We are truckin’ through a TON of changes here at CMB with our 31 Days to a More Reader-Friendly Blog series. Are you making some big changes to your blog? We pray we aren’t putting too much on your radar at one time! Yet, we also pray we are giving you the tools and tips necessary to take your blog to the next level.
If you are like me, when you first started (or maybe you are just starting out and you’ll see what I am saying), you created a category for everything! It was too hard to find broad categories to fit all of your post ideas. It was too limiting to only have a few options for your readers! What if they want to see your post on gardening? If you don’t have a category on the side with gardening, how on earth will they ever find your post!!
They will. You know why? You will place that category within a parent category. You will keep it more organized for your readers (so they don’t feel overwhelmed by the selection) and it will be easier to make sure you are writing to your mission!
How to organize your blog categories for a more reader-friendly blog
1. Come up with 3-5 broad topics that take your mission statement from thought to action. How are you fulfilling your mission? At CMB, here is our mission statement:
At Christian Mommy Blogger it is our deepest desire to educate, encourage and energize your eMinistry. We long to strengthen you in the Lord and help you find your voice so you can better sing His praises.
We took that statement and said to ourselves: “Selves, every post that we write needs to fall under this mission statement. So we need to make sure every post either educates, encourages, or energizes our readers in their eMinistry.”
Yes, we occasionally have a post that doesn’t fall there for the long term (giveaways, random little updates or changes to our blog), but our priority when writing is to fill one of those.
2. Come up with 3-5 sub-categories that allow your readers to focus in on a theme. Your readers may want more detailed selections. And you want more power to categorize your blog for easy reference and searching. But by doing this, you are again making sure every topic furthers your mission. As your blog expands, these may expand as well. I would hesitate to let it get too big. That can get confusing!
Here is how we did it for ours:
3. Stick to it! Don’t try to create a new category every time you write. If you find it doesn’t fall under your 3 main categories, ask yourself if it really fulfills your mission? Or perhaps you need to revisit your mission?
4. Display them! If your readers can’t see your categories, they won’t know where to start reading! We display ours in our menu bar and our sidebar. You pick! Just take the time to make them pretty if you stick them in the sidebar so people don’t glaze over them (that tends to happen with sidebar stuff!)
Are your categories in good shape or totally out of control?