I have great clients because they’re always teaching me. I don’t know if all of these ideas came from clients but I felt they’d be helpful to a lot of other WordPress bloggers. Here are a few WordPress blogging mistakes to avoid, that I’d like to share with you:
- Don’t forget to insert a read more tag around 75 – 100 words (immediately after about two long sentences or two short paragraphs) from the beginning. The effects of this are not seen when someone goes directly to a single post, but when landing on the main blog page where there’s a list of posts, a visitor only sees the teaser for each post. In this way your analytics get more discreet statistics about where visitors come from and land for each post. Without this you can’t tell which individual post is trending or is more popular that the rest.
- Be mindful to use the ‘Paste as text’ button, whenever pasting text from somewhere or something else. Both Google Docs and MSWord carry their formatting into what you’re editing. Use ‘Paste as text’ to avoid the unintentional insertion of font declarations which do not follow your website’s style. This ‘carry-over’ also creates an inconsistent appearance for your website’s text, especially when viewed on smaller devices. For your visitors, the effect can be visually jarring. These stray font calls may also call for the ‘fetching’ of fonts not already present. This can extend page/post load time and slow your website down.
- Use HTML structure the way it is intended. An HTML document (page/post/etc) intentionally has a hierarchical structure. As a general rule, every HTML document should have one level one heading, which may be followed by level two, three, four and more… But note that headings (
<h2>, etc.) are intended for structuring a document. When the search engines look at your
<h3>heading, they will interpret it as a level three (hierarchical) heading nested below a level two (hierarchical) heading which is also below the ONLY level one (hierarchical) heading. If this is not the case, the hierarchy is poorly interpreted and may be ignored. That means loss of SEO juice.
- Don’t make everything an
<h1>heading. On any given post/page there must only be, one level-one heading. It’s the title of the document. When you give a title to a page/post, WordPress uses that as the
<h1>automatically. Because of this, it’s not recommended to add another
<h1>in the content of the page or post.
If used correctly, the heading levels you apply also help with SEO. The words in an
<h1>are given the most ‘juice’ followed by the
<h3>and so on. I don’t recommend that you use a heading format on a call-to-action or anywhere else the intended text is not explicitly part of the hierarchical structure of your HTML document.
- Poor spelling or poor word choice is annoying to many and reflects a low regard for the reader. Please note that there is a Proofread Writing Tool that’s part of WordPress. Go to your edit screen and in the edit menu look for the Tools > Proofread Writing where WordPress will temporarily markup your content with suggestions to improve the writing. Just right click the red underscore marked wording and a suggestions dialog will pop-up. Keep in mind that this is only a guide to help you. It is not always going to offer the best suggestions for the writing you’re working on. Try to make sure your grammar is the best you can give your audience.
- Avoid overusing any style. Example: A sale page where most if not all of the text is bold, italic and large. Try to limit the use of style to emphasize a specific point. If you emphasize everything then nothing is emphasized, while just making it harder to read.
- If you’re supposed to be the author of a post, then claim it. Otherwise, please set the author correctly. Is something is preventing you from changing this? Then, please contact your website admin so they can fix it for you.
One Additional Helpful Tip:
- There may be some styling items specific to your WordPress website that are available in the editor. Talk to your web designer/developer to find out what these special styles are and how to apply them. Normally, to use them, select the text you wish to apply the style to. Then in the editor menu bar (after View and before Table) you’ll see a Format pull-down. Pull the menu down and click on the desired special style.
If you have any questions or I’ve used too much geek-speak, please don’t hesitate to contact me so I can address your questions and concerns.