Basics for blogging
You have a blog now. Great! What do you do now? This article will walk you through the steps for creating a blog. We will show you some key features for styling your blog and discuss some things to keep in mind when creating a blog post.
Accessing the blog editor
You can find your blog in your backend. Click 'Frontend Blog' from the navigation pain on the left. From there, you will see your existing posts and a button for creating a new post, conveniently labeled, 'Add New Post.' Click that and you should see this:
Getting to know the editor
The editor is composed of 4 basic functions:
- Blog title input
- Content input
- Featured post toggle
- Image upload button
Here's that same screen shot annotated.
Lets jump first to the most non-self-explanatory feature. The Featured Toggle allows you to mark a post as one that should be on your home page no matter how many blog posts you have posted.
You get to have 3 posts on your home page at any one time. By marking something as 'Starred' or featured, that post skips to the head of line no matter what.
What happens if you mark more than 3 posts as featured? Good question. The system then uses the most recent 3 posts.
How do I find all of my blog posts?
Another good question. Your blog is available at your homepage link/blog. So for Wine & Design Durham, it would be wineanddesign.com/durham/blog
From this page, you can select any post and see what it looks like. Of course you can also see your posts in the backend, but you won't see how they look published there.
Pro-Tip: Get the link and share it
You should publicize your blog. An easy way to do this is to link it in your social media posts. Simply go to your blog page, click on an article and copy the URL. You can then add it to any social media post to drive traffic to that blog post.
Lets talk content
So now lets jump into the mechanics of creating a blog post. There are 3 main content types: 1) the title; 2) the body/content and 3) the image.
Your blog title is important. It signals to the customer what your post is about. It is also the big bold text that is displayed on your homepage. So, name it carefully. One thing to avoid is an overly long, descriptive title. Try to make the title catchy and attention grabbing. Think Buzz Feed. They are good at this.
Your content is the meat of your article. Here you will communicate everything you want in your post. A key thing to note here, is that it works like any other text editor. You type in text and can style it using the tools in the editor.
Lets define some terms in the image above:
- Font Styles - these are things like bold, italic, underlined
- Heading styles - these are pre-defined formats for text, like Heading 1 (biggest), Heading 2 (big), Heading 3 (medium), Heading 4 (Smaller), etc. You use these to quickly differentiate the headings of a paragraph. This post uses them. Can you tell where?
- Size and font - this is the style for the selected text or the text you are about to type.
- Lists - list are bulletted or numbered lists. Like this one for instance.
- Links - this is the button that informs the editor to make a link composed of the selected text, like this. Simply select the text to use as the link and copy the URL into the URL field.
What about images?
We didn't discuss these. If you notice, there is an image button (its next to the flag icon) in the editor. This can be used for inline (i.e. in your content) images but requires the image to exist online somewhere and that you know the URL. This is an advanced feature.
For general purpose use, we have added the image upload button. You can upload a single image that is featured in the post. It will appear prominently on both your homepage and at the top of the post. Its like the Hero image from your homepage.
Save and Publish
Once you are happy with your post, simply click 'Save changes' at the bottom of the editor and your post will be published immediately. Easy.
I've just walked you through a simple post. Most blog posts should be simple and straight forward. They are used as a conversation with your audience. However, you can do a lot with blog posts. Check out our other article on advertising Art Buzz Kids Camps as one example.