I’ve been blogging for over 6 years now and working as a blog designer for over 5. From all the time in the blogging world, I can tell you there are certain features that every single blog should have, no matter your niche, newbie blogger or experienced bloggers. Having these next 5 features will help you grow your blog and better connect with your readers!
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Fact: Your blog’s about page will be one of the most visited pages on your blog. Why is that? Because people want to know who you are and what your blog is all about.
Each About page should have at least three basic elements –
- Your Intro / Bio Text: Introduce yourself! People want to know who you are and any interesting bits about you. Here’s the place to add a little personality and make a personal connection.
- Your Photo: Humans are visual beings and as such we like to see the faces behind the blog! This will help you make that personal connection and will let readers know you’re a real actual person writing on your blog.
- Your Blog’s Purpose: The About page is also the place to let readers know, specially new readers, what your blog is all about. What do you share about most often? Why did you start your blog? What keeps you going? Give readers a taste of what they can expect as they follow your blog.
I’ve made sure to include each of these elements on my About page and I can tell there’s been a difference in the people that subscribe to my blog + reach out!
The second page you set up, immediately after your about page, should be your contact page. It truly doesn’t have to be anything fancy but you need to provide a way for people to reach you.
There are number of reasons people might be trying to reach you including but not limited to monetization opportunities, guest posting opportunities, and letting you know your blog rocks.
Every single one of those messages has come through my contact page and then some. At the bare minimum you should list your blog email address but I also recommend using a form.
Social Media Links / Follow Buttons
This is related to the previous point. Readers will want to keep in touch or at the very least make sure they aren’t missing new posts.
Make sure you have links to your social media profiles easily accessible on your blog – sidebar, footer, and/or header are all great places to include them.
Also consider including links to your RSS Feed or RSS Feed aggregators like Bloglovin’ or Feedly where people can follow your blog and receive your latest post.
I use Simple Social Icons to add my social media links on my sidebar + footer5 Things Every Blog Should Have. Find out what are those must-have features for every blogClick To Tweet
Following the theme of readers staying in touch with you, having an email opt-in is almost a non-negotiable. Why? Social media and RSS feed aggregates like Bloglovin’ are out of your control. You don’t make the rules, things are always changing. You can lose touch with your followers overnight with one algorithm change.
Getting a reader’s email address is the equivalent of being invited into their home – inboxes are our online homes and the best way to keep in touch with your readers.
The best thing is, it doesn’t have to fancy and your newsletter can be super low maintenance if you keep it as an RSS Feed campaign in the beginning. The important thing is to start collecting those email addresses early and to be consistent in sending emails (at least once a month).
Social Media Sharing Buttons
Last, but definitely not least, all blogs should have social media sharing buttons on their blog posts. I see this happening all the time on blogging group – enter newish blogger, wondering why her traffic is so low… she shares and shares and nothing. I go to their blog and… no social media sharing buttons.
Why is that wrong? You’re only one person, just you, with 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week. There’s only so much sharing you can do in that time. The easiest way to leverage social media is by making easy for others to share your content.
And the thing is people will only share you content if you make easy for them to do so. So add those social media sharing buttons! Every single blog post should have them for at least each of the 3 social media platforms – Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.
I use the plugin Social Warfare for my social share buttons