We’ve got an awesome guest post for you today from Stephanie of Jornie.com She’s sharing a neat way to make round-up posts look more professional. We’ve often talked about not making posts too long (300-1000 words MAX), so sometimes it’s best to break things up into a series. Today, Stephanie is sharing a way to do the coding to make it look more professional and even bring in more page views!
This is one of the biggest problems for most of us starting out. We do the social networking, we do the Linky parties, we make our images look good on Pinterest, etc… But we’re still getting less pageviews than we want. So how can you boost your stats and not spend a ton of time doing it?
Make awesome roundups out of your posts, and link your series.
Think of posts you see on many popular media blogs with something like “10 top tips.” They don’t have all those tips on one page–you have to click “next” or something similar to see each one. This was revolutionary for me… Each “next” is a pageview!
But how do you set this up? It’s quite simple, really. For each roundup post, you simply do a group of posts, and at the bottom of each post, make a link that says “previous” and a link that says “next,” each pointing to the corresponding post that should be before or after… i.e.:
<< Previous | Next >>
Also add a picture, link and description for each post in your roundup on the first page, so it’s easy for others to navigate to the posts they’re interested in (and Google doesn’t punish you for not having enough text content for good SEO). One example of this is in my Extreme Saving series (Part 1 / Part 2).
When you are doing a series, update previous posts with links as you post new ones… i.e.:
<< Last week’s post | Next week’s post >>
Tip: If you want to bulk-post a series but don’t want all of the posts to show up on the main page (or be sent out as an email to your subscribers!), backdate the publish date a couple weeks in the past on all posts except for the first one. This option is found right in the Save Draft/Publish area on the Edit Post screen of WordPress (same part you change in order to schedule posts in the future–just do it in reverse).
If you know a little html and want to get fancy with the styling, you can make the links actually look like buttons. You just add an extra button class to the CSS that you call with each of the links. Here’s an example of what I used with my 5-Minute Laundry Detergent post…
Add this to the CSS of your self-hosted WordPress.org blog by going to Appearance > Edit CSS:
Just paste it in the box (replacing any placeholder text that might be in there if you’ve never edited this area before) and click “Save Stylesheet.” It won’t overwrite any of the main theme files, and will only be visible when you call it, within a post or elsewhere–which I’ll show you how to do next.
If you’re curious what all that code does, I’ll give a brief explanation. a.bottom-boxlink creates a class for links (a) titled “bottom-boxlink.” It adds some attributes like padding (which adds space between the text and the edge of the button), border-radius (which gives it rounded edges), background-color (this one is turquoise, but you can find other color codes here), and text color (this one is white, but you can sub “black” or a color code here also). The next part, a.bottom-boxlink:hover, tells the button to change a bit when you hover over it with the mouse. In this instance, it changes the background to a slightly lighter color of turquoise, but keeps the text white.
Add this class to your link (in between the < and > in the html view):
So the end result of the bottom links looks something like this:
(Again, this is an excerpt from the code at the bottom of one of my actual posts.)
There you go! The button styling will work anywhere else on your site as well, so if you want to make any other buttons that look like that, just format the link in the same way (by adding the class). Again, you can change the colors of the buttons, delete the border-radius property if you don’t want rounded edges, or make any number of tweaks so they look just right on your blog/site. If you need more help with html, w3schools.com is a really great resource.
Cheers to more pageviews and fancy round up buttons!