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blog management

67 evergreen blog post ideas for lifestyle bloggers

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evergreen blog post ideas

What is an “evergreen” post? It’s exactly what it sounds like – it’s not necessarily time sensitive, and it can be a great way to blog about topics you don’t normally touch on, or just share more about yourself with your readers. I actually have a bunch of these already written and just ready to fill in on a hole in my content calendar if needed. Since they’re timeless, you could batch write several anytime throughout the year! Here are 67 ideas (with a link to 36 more.)

  1. How you organize your blog
  2. Giveaways: host a giveaway for one of your favorite apps or products
  3. Biggest fears
  4. Beauty product dupes
  5. Your favorite sports teams
  6. What’s your favorite place to shop?
  7. Link roundup: share your favorite websites and blogs
  8. How to boost blog traffic
  9. Favorite food or restaurant
  10. Handwriting post: handwrite a post for visitors to read, or just show us your writing
  11. Travel journal for a trip you’ve been on
  12. Nighttime routine
  13. Gift guide for ___: share your favorite gift ideas for friends and family
  14. Holiday posts: donut day, pancake day… every day is a holiday, so if there’s a hole in your content calendar, fill it with a holiday post!
  15. Your five favorite quotes & phone background photos for visitors to download
  16. Weekend recap with photos: show your readers what you did this weekend!
  17. What’s in my bag?
  18. Take the Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory test: do you agree with your results?
  19. Share your weekly workout routine
  20. Favorite apps on your phone
  21. Haul posts: did you get some great scores? Share them with your readers!
  22. Must-read blogs
  23. Share your favorite childhood recipe
  24. Favorite podcasts
  25. Walk through your bullet journal/planner
  26. Product empties and products you can’t live without
  27. How to pass time when you’re bored
  28. Favorite things: pick a topic, and write about it!
  29. Blog resources: where do you find things for your blog like photos, fonts, or plugins?
  30. Story of a selfie
  31. If you could move anywhere, where would you go?
  32. Favorite bands
  33. What product do you wish you had invented?
  34. Intro to your favorite thing – do you love a TV show or movie series? Write a primer for newbies!
  35. Your favorite fonts & include download links
  36. Share your annual goals – this can help keep you accountable and motivated!
  37. Your idea of the perfect day
  38. How to create content readers love
  39. Playlists: share your favorite playlists for working, working out, or anything else!
  40. Product reviews
  41. DIY post: teach your readers how to do something you’ve recently tackled!
  42. Post your vision board and explain what it means for your readers
  43. What is your proudest moment?
  44. Home tour: include photos and links to where you purchased your favorite pieces
  45. Tattoo stories: what do they mean, where did you get them, did it hurt?
  46. Favorite beer/wine
  47. If you had a TV show, what would it be like?
  48. Share your best productivity tips
  49. How to save money on ___: what unique things have you found savings for that other people can benefit from?
  50. What was your favorite road trip?
  51. Book club: review recent reads and make recommendations!
  52. What is your love language?
  53. Blog post ideas post ūüėČ
  54. What’s your morning routine?
  55. How to start a blog
  56. Share your favorite food trend
  57. Favorite vloggers
  58. Guide to your city: share hidden gems that won’t turn up on a Google search…¬†until you write the post!
  59. Things you don’t know about me
  60. Guilty pleasures
  61. Write a letter to yourself
  62. Update a version of an old post
  63. How to use ___ plugin
  64. What’s in your gym bag?
  65. How do you pack for a weekend trip?
  66. A day in the life
  67. Your dream job

Still need more ideas? Check out Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator!

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July 19, 2017
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50+ free stock photo websites for your blog or business

Posted in Blogging by

stock photo websites

My last post on places to find gorgeous stock photos for free was really successful, so it’s clear that there’s a demand for these kind of resources! I’m back today not only with more websites to try out, but also a freebie that will share even more places to find free stock photos. Here are some of my favorite new discoveries!

And if these aren’t enough, check out these other photo and graphic resources:

Gold & Berry: The aesthetic she has is gorgeous, and I love the glittery gold features she includes. She also includes a .psd file with drag and drop assets, so you can customize the look of the photo!

A Prettier Web: That ban.do planner from last year is super cute, so I’m glad that it gets featured in so many stock photo collections! This one is no different. Perfect for entrepreneurs or bloggers, this pack features photos that are great for different types of posts or products.

50 free stock photo website resources

Shafaq Omair: Similar to Gold & Berry, Shafaq’s photos focus heavily on the black and gold, which is such a nice combo. Her photos are also really feminine, which make them perfect for female entrepreneurs. As soon as you sign up for the mailing list, you’ll have access to the library, which contains many different photo packs.

Ashley Creates Things: It looks like Ashley is no longer an active blogger, but her pretty stock photos are still accessible. Several different options would be great for a wide variety of businesses, from home design to getting beach ready!

The Pattern Library: It’s not a stock photo website in the strictest sense, but they provide patterns that can be used as backgrounds for websites or even in marketing graphics! Or just scroll through their library – it’s surprisingly relaxing to watch the images fly by.

Like these? Sign up for the mailing list to access the full list of more than 50 free stock photo resources (that’s¬†hundreds of free images for your website!

July 5, 2017
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what’s wrong with your blog

Posted in Blogging by
This post contains affiliate links.

what's wrong with your blog

You’ve been focusing hard on your blog – picking a theme that puts the focus on your content and creating great, engaging posts that benefit your readers. So why aren’t you getting the traffic, engagement, or brand partnerships that you’ve been working for? Sometimes you can have the best content in the world, but have some other issues going on with your blog or website. In my day job, I often review and audit websites and offer tips and tricks for the owner to improve the site going forward. These are some of the most common issues I see when looking at other websites!

You’re Not Self-Hosted: This is the number one mistake anyone could ever make, especially new bloggers. I get it – it can be hard to shell out the money for hosting and a domain name, but without your own domain name, you won’t ever look professional. Consider a brand or potential sponsor getting a request to sponsor “yourblog.blogspot.com” – this could lead readers to think that the brand is associated with Blogspot, rather than your particular website. And if you do find a partner with a URL like that, readers might not remember what your website is going forward – they might only remember the top-level domain, which will make it harder to find you again. It doesn’t even have to be very expensive – my hosting and domain names are less than $100 per year. If you’re looking to make the move to self-hosted and start to increase your traffic and monetization, check out BigScoots – they’re my favorite!

You’re Using Comic Sans: Poor old Comic Sans takes the fall, but there are a¬†lot of terrible fonts that are sorely overused in design and blogging. Papyrus, Bleeding Cowboys, Stencil… the list goes on, and you can probably think of a few others. There’s a reason these fonts regularly get listed on “do not use” lists – they’re unprofessional and dated, and when used on your blog or website, that’s the message they convey. If you’re using these fonts, consider browsing some alternatives. Google Fonts is super easy to integrate into a WordPress blog, and DaFont has a huge library of free fonts to check out – Pinterest is also a good place to look for free fonts to use!

You Don’t Interact With Readers On Social Media or In Comments: Creating a loyal audience is important when growing your blog, but you can’t build a relationship based on one-way communication. If visitors are commenting on your posts, be sure to reply – maybe they’re sharing more valuable tips you can benefit from, or have questions about a point in your post. If you’re struggling to get comments, consider including a question at the end of your posts as a call to action. Check your notifications on social media regularly – engage with your followers by posting content they’ll benefit from, and reply to their posts! Twitter is especially fun to interact on – it’s easy to find other people with your interests.

Your Bio Sucks: Admittedly, the bio page is a delicate balance, so it can be tough to get “right”. Without drawing on your entire life story, you want readers to be able to quickly get an idea of who you are and what you’re like. I’ve seen bios that detail each year of someone’s school life, pages that include little substance or are written in a way that doesn’t connect, or worst of all – blogs without any sort of “about” page. Your readers want to quickly get your backstory – especially new readers who might be jumping into your blog without any context. If you aren’t feeling very inspired, this is a great post on how to improve your biography, or look at this post with some of my favorite examples!

Your Layout Is Bad: If you’re using the WordPress default layout, it might make you look a bit amateur – you don’t have to spend a ton (or any!) on a theme for your blog for it to look great. I’ve gotten my last two themes on Etsy for super reasonable prices, and many designers even offer installation, if you’re a total newbie. There are tons of resources for free themes, like these for WordPress and Blogger. Be sure that it’s mobile responsive, though – almost 60% of all traffic online now is on a mobile device. Themes that aren’t responsive won’t display well for visitors on phones or tablets, and they might not be able to read any of your content. If you lose them, you might not get them back!

You Have Pop-Ups: Repeat after me: I will not use pop-ups on my website. There’s nothing worse for me than visiting a website and having to close an opt-in or call to action (and it’s even worse when something pops up on every page.) Instead, consider adding your mailing list signup to the top of your content or sidebar areas, or adding a call to action as a header image. I’ve always found it to be a bit presumptive to ask someone to subscribe to you before they’ve even had a chance to check out your content! Some pop-up widgets aren’t responsive either, meaning they can’t be closed or minimized by mobile visitors. If you have to use a pop-up, be sure to test out to make sure it can be closed on a mobile device. Google is actually starting to penalize websites that use pop-ups, so be sure you’re working within their guidelines if you¬†do choose to use these.

There’s No Mailing List: When your visitors do click through to read your great posts, they’ll want to subscribe to get emails from you. If you don’t have a mailing list yet, there’s no better time than now to start! ConvertKit is really popular with bloggers and entrepreneurs to manage mailing lists, but the old standby MailChimp is great for beginners (and free for up to 2,000 subscribers!)

Your Site Isn’t Secure: A few months ago, Google and other search engines started penalizing websites that aren’t using a secure SSL certificate. Basically, SSL is a setting that provides extra security for your visitors – it lets browsers connect securely to different websites. In addition to being penalized in search results, Google Chrome (the most popular web browser) will display a message to visitors that your site is not secure if you don’t have an SSL certificate. This can definitely scare away visitors who think your site may be hosting malware or other material harmful to their computers. It’s typically pretty easy to turn it on – I just emailed the guys at BigScoots, and they issued the SSL certificate right away for no extra cost. Your host can help you out more with this.¬†You can learn more about encryption here!

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June 28, 2017
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6 blog management skills to put on your resume

Posted in Blogging, Career by
This post contains affiliate links.

blog management skills to add to your resume

You might think that blogging is a fun hobby, and it is! But it’s also a great way to build marketable skills for your resume. As a blogger, you’re not only a writer, but also a marketer, designer, editor, and creative director. Depending on your niche, you’re also developing valuable sales skills as well. That’s nothing to shake a stick at! For years I wrestled with including my blog on my resume or professional portfolio at all, but I’ve been doing this for five years and have become an expert in many things I’ve never had the opportunity to explore in my day jobs. It’s important for prospective new employers to have a view of all of your skills – and if they check out your blog, they’ll even get to know more about you! Here are just six of the blogging skills you can add to your resume today.

Looking to start your blog, or looking for a great new host? I love BigScoots – save on hosting with my discount code 8S01R8QFCE76 and affiliate link!

Marketing: You oversee the social media marketing plan for your blog – what tools do you use? Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and your blogging platform should all be listed on your resume or portfolio. Much like your media kit,¬†you could also add in your social stats. Google Analytics and any other tools you use can be added here as well. Any advertising you do with other bloggers (or even in Facebook groups) are also really great to add. You’re also focused on writing posts with great SEO, which companies will find attractive (and add value with highlighting your Pinterest SEO skills as well.) Email marketing tools are popular in all industries as well, so if you’ve tried a couple out, be sure to outline that!

Community Building: While having a huge number of followers (probably) feels really great, building a dedicated audience interested in what you have to say is even better. Being able to show employers that you can engage readers and customers displays that you can create worthwhile content that adds value to their existing brand.

Brand Partnerships: Speaking of brands, partnerships and sponsors are definitely worthy of your resume. Showing that you have partnered successfully with brands or companies is impressive, especially if you’ve collaborated with them multiple times. It also shows that you excel at the “cold call” approach since it’s rare for brands to reach out to bloggers directly. This is a really valuable skill, especially once you’ve mastered it!

Graphic Design/Photography: Even if you’re just shooting snaps on your iPhone or editing graphics in Canva or phone apps, there’s a lot of design work that goes into blog planning. Finding stock photography, choosing fonts and colors, and even selecting a layout or theme for your blog helps to enhance your design skills every day. I even know some bloggers who had no design skills when they started, and now they side hustle creating graphics for other bloggers or brands. It’s helped me tremendously – the other day I got a glance of my first media kit and just wanted to shudder!

Chief Creative: What post goes where? What kinds of brands will you work with? What’s the color scheme, layout, and font pairings? You’re in charge of all the artistic decisions as well. Using HTML and CSS, even if it’s basic, is definitely worth adding this to your resume. It comes in handy if you’re writing or formatting blog posts or email marketing newsletters (and even on social media.) Mapping out your content calendar shows your skills at pre-planning, which will set you apart in a world full of procrastinators!

Copywriting: In blogging, we’re responsible for a pretty wide variety of copy. From blog posts to social media blurbs and newsletters, they each beg for their own tone. Running your own blog (and marketing) helps you exercise this muscle outside the workplace, and bring in the skills to apply to your new position.

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June 14, 2017
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tools for bloggers for your best writing ever

Posted in Blogging by
This post contains affiliate links from Grammarly.

best writing ever

So you’ve worked hard on filling up your content calendar and now you’re writing your posts. You want to make sure that you’re not using “filler” content – higher quality posts will help you get more traffic and build a dedicated base of readers. (Plus, high-quality blogs will attract more brands and sponsors!) These are some of my favorite tools for bloggers that can help ensure you’re putting your best writing forward.

Hemingway: Hemingway is an editor that you can paste your writing into and it will grade it (their recommendation is to write for a ninth grade reading level), offer feedback for hard to read passages and more. You can even write full posts in Hemingway now (including formatting, for easy pasting into your post) and download a desktop app if you prefer to work in a window without website distractions. Readable is a similar service and can grade URLs as well, but their free version only lets you grade a few links at a time.

Grammarly: I’ve posted before about how much I love Grammarly (including screencasts of it in action!) and it continues to be one of my writing must-haves. Since it works in real-time, it really serves my internal editor and helps me make sure I’m not missing any misspellings or errant commas. I highly, highly recommend checking Grammarly out because it’s the number one thing that has helped my writing out more than any other app or service.

Thesaurus: Grab a desktop copy from Amazon or use thesaurus.com – this is one of the most relied upon tools in my kit. Especially when I’m writing a series or very focused post, I might find myself repeating the same word over and over. A thesaurus helps me mix it up and adds variety to my writing!

Byword: A full-screen program for writing, Byword is great for those who get easily distracted when writing in web-based apps. It’s downloadable for¬†Mac and Apple mobile devices, and I love its simplicity. It also lets you export formatted text to PDF, rich text, or HTML for Blogger, WordPress, and other blogging platforms. If you don’t have a Mac or prefer a web-based editor, sign up to find out with Quabel Writer launches. Or for a more extreme option, try BlindWriter – it lets you set a time limit, then blurs out your¬†composition until the¬†time is up. If you’re a merciless editor (like me,) this is a great way to start exercising editing¬†after writing.

Rough Drafts: While blogging shouldn’t bring back nightmares of homework assignments from school, writing drafts of your posts before scheduling them can help you make sure you’re putting the best content forward. I really like Krista’s five question method and printable¬†– her questions help you really focus on your content.

BlaBlaMeter: If you’ve ever wondered¬†about “junky” words in your writing, BlaBlaMeter is a great judge. Paste in your text and it will grade the quality of your writing – if you’re using all the other tools, your writing is probably checking out pretty well here!

Other Bloggers: There’s no substitute for another pair of eyes. Facebook Groups can be a great resource – many of them have weekly schedules, and some of them (like Rock Your Blog & Biz) even have feedback days scheduled in.¬†Check out a subreddit like r/blogging¬†if you’re more comfortable there. Use these opportunities to solicit advice from readers – they might have some advice you’d never have thought of!

Do you use any of these tools for bloggers? Did I miss out on any that you swear by?

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May 24, 2017
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