By Starr Durrant
Whether you are a new blogger or a seasoned pro sharing your creative projects, these tools and tips will work for you! When I started blogging two years ago, I had no idea there were so many amazing useful and user-friendly ways to enhance the quality, content and exposure of my blog. Looking back, I sure would have appreciated finding a link to all these great resources in one place so with this in mind; I’ve put together a list of my favs to share with you.
Headline Analyzer & Title Generators
CoShedule offers a free blog post headline analyzer that will score your overall headline quality and rate its ability to result in social shares, increased traffic, and SEO value. It is so simple to use and gives you a lot of feedback. You just enter your blog title in the box, click on ‘Analyze Now’ and your blog title rating and feedback displays. You can adjust or change the title and continue to do so until you enter a title with a high score. Portent Title Maker is also a great free online tool. You simply type in your topic key words and it suggests a title with a breakdown of what to consider and why.
Pinterest Group Pages
PinGroupie is a great site if you want a listing of all the groups where multiple people share pins. You just enter your search word, like Crafts, and it provide you a lengthy lists of groups to check out and or join. When you join (you typically have to follow their page and then message them with your interest or request to join) you can then add your pins to their board or page and increase your blog exposure via their followers but remember to pin and share other projects in return!
If you struggle with grammar this is a great site. Correctica offers an easy to use tool that catches what spell checkers, grammar checkers, and human editors can miss. Correctica looks for errors in your web posts, emails, blog posts, resumé, online profiles, Word and PDF documents. You can try it by entering your URL and getting a summary of errors in under 2 minutes and if you feel it is something you can benefit from there is a small monthly fee to sign-up.
Inlinkz is an easy and fun way to network with other crafters. You can host a link party on your blog and website and invite others to submit a link to their project which displays as a gallery on your site. The benefits of this are increased traffic to your site because ideally the individuals who have submitted projects are helping to promote it. You can host challenges, have voting and announce winners! There is a nominal fee for service but you can try it for free to see if it works for you. For an example of what a link party looks like here are a few of the linked parties I’ve participated in: La Cartera Holiday Craft Favorites – Week #6 – Christmas Cupcake Toppers Twelve on Main The Christmas Link Up and Remodelaholic Great Organizing and Decor Projects Re-purposed Solutions That Keep Your Accessories Organized
Tracking Pins on Pinterest
WIf you want to know which of your pictures people are pinning copy and paste the following URL. NOTE that you have to add your own website or blog URL minus the http or www after the slash
http://pinterest.com/source/ADD Your Website 0r blog URL here without the http or www
Content Suggestions & Trends
BuzzSumo is designed to find the most shared content across social networks. You enter your topic of interest and will immediately be provided with a listing of content that is popular or trending. You can filter by day, week, month or year as well by language, country or content type. This is an excellent tool to research terms or topics that are likely to be of current interest when you are selecting your content topics. Google Trends is also a tool that is free and allows you to enter your topic to identify related trends. For instance when I entered ‘crafts’, I found that ‘crafts for kids’ was the most popular related term.
Having an About Me page is really important. You will be surprised how many people check out who you are and what you do. It’s always a good idea to give your readers a sense of what interests or motivates you to be creative and don’t forget to keep a list of where your work or projects have been posted or featured. This is a great way to highlight your success and also is a way to direct your visitors to the sites that accepted or published your projects.
Taking Quality Photo’s For Your Blog
If you are doing your own photo’s there are many articles and resources available online like Video2Brain’s “The Art of Craft Photography Show Your Work in the Best Light” that have some excellent tips. You may also want to invest in a mini photo studio like Optex Photo Studio Lighting Kit – OSLKIT which are great for smaller craft items.
Have you noticed on Pinterest how some people will post 3 – 5 pictures vertically? Vertical pins attract more attention and get pinned more often so this is something I have yet to try but it’s a definite on my to do list! If you’re interested visit Thinking Outside The SANDBOX “How To Create Vertical Pin for Pinterest” for step by step directions on how to do this using PicMonkey.
Free Photo Stock
There are so many free photo stock sites available out there where you can access professional quality pictures without the royalty costs. The picture at the top of this blog is from freedigitalphotos.net , I find they have a good selection and it is very easy to use. Remember to read the agreements and include a reference to the site the photo originated from when you use it.
Managing You Unfollows On Twitter
ManageFlitter.makes it easy to see who isn’t following you and who isn’t actively tweeting and with a simple click you can unfollow them. Basic use is free with upgrade options. You sign up and you can go daily to access a list and with a single click, you can unfollow up to 100 unfollowers a day with a free account.
ALSO SEE – Where to Share & Promote Your DIY, Crafts and Handmade Items.
Wishing You Success!