Blog Housekeping: 5 Ways to Clean Up Your Blog

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image from DanBrady

You clean your house, your car, even your purse. But what about your blog?

Depending on the size of your blog and how long you've been at it, your archives and categories could do for a little impromptu cleaning session. Even a blogger with the best intentions will procrastinate when it comes time for blogging maintenance, but it is definitely a task you have to tackle soon. Imagine all the untagged or miscategorized posts that are floating around on your blog. How will any of your viewers get to that one must-read post if they can't find it? A quick clean-up session will give your readers more access to your content and will lead to an increased amount of traffic. Plus, all those dead links just leave blog readers frustrated!

Conducting blog housekeeping might seem slightly painful but with planning and time, you can easily tackle this blogging project.

Here are 5 easy tips to help you clean out your blog:

1. Get your blogging archives up-to-date. The easiest way to clean house is to pay attention to your archives. Organize them by year/month and you have just given your readers an easy way to follow your posts throughout the year. For WordPress users, you can use various plugins including the Simply Yearly archive plugin or the Clean Archives Reloaded which will automatically sort and catalog your posts according to date/time.

2. Tag your posts with traffic-friendly keywords. What's the easiest way to drive more traffic to your archives? Use the best keywords as your tags! By doing this, search engines will direct traffic to your posts because of those popular keywords. To figure out which keywords to use, try Google Insight which allows you to find the most-searched keywords for your blog post's topic.

3. Clean Out Your Blogroll. Yes, it's sad to weed out the dead links (RIP Blogs!) but those dead links are just annoying. Plus, they are taking up precious space on your blog. Make it a habit to check your blogroll every month and add new favorite blogs to increase traffic and build relationships with other bloggers.

4. Edit your Categories. Does our category menu look like a never-ending list of random words and tags? It's time to combine your categories and weed out the unnecessary ones. I recommend this Bulk Category cleaner which allows you to create new categories, delete old ones, and combine smaller ones. By categorizing your posts appropriately, your readers will be able to find relevant information that they didn't intentionally search for but are happy to have found.

5. Find and delete old links. It's inevitable- you will find dead links on your blog at some point. Yes, it's obnoxious but there is an easy way to trouble-shoot that issue: find a plugin. You knew I was going to say that, right? WordPress (aka my heaven) has a substantial amount of plugins that make it easy for you to do site maintenance. For instance, this dead link finding plugin will sort through your posts and notify you if there are dead links. Unfortunately, there isn't a simple tool that Blogger users can use. But don't let that detract you!

Now you've got the basic rundown of how to clean up your blog. That wasn't too hard, was it? If you have any questions or concerns, leave them in the comments section! Or if you know of a handy plugin that can help with any of the housekeeping issues mentioned up, do share!

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26 Responses

  1. Ashe

    Much needed, Amanda! It’s been feeling like Spring in New Orleans for ages, so perhaps a little blog Spring cleaning is in order…

    Reply
  2. Nnenna

    I definitely need to weed out all the old/dead links- I’ve been putting it off for far too long! And my categories could probably use some sprucing up too! Love WordPress plugins- they make life so much easier 🙂

    Reply
  3. Raachael

    This is amazing!

    I have been putting off these types of maintenance tasks forever because it sounded so overwhelming. I had no idea there were so many plugins that would make it easier.

    The other maintence thing I should do more often is emptying my spam filter. So much spam!

    Thanks!

    Reply
  4. Rachael

    Thank you so much! I have been putting off these types of maintenance tasks forever because it sounded so overwhelming. I had no idea there were so many great plugins to help!

    The other thing I need to do more often is emptying my spam filter. So much spam!

    Thanks!

    Reply
  5. spery

    I do some blog cleaning usually when I’m sick at home. It’s good to take care of him changing plugins, looking at stats, fixing some broken links.

    Reply
  6. MJ

    This is great advice! Especially the one about going back and tagging those old blog posts with your best keywords. Excellent!

    Reply
  7. Samar

    Oh my so much work but it has to be done! At the end of the day I can see this kind of thing not only leading to more traffic but keeping people around when they know your blog is dependable and easy to read.

    Reply
  8. Moe

    The broken link plug in is one of my favorites. It really helps me keep on top of them, it works for blog links and comments too.

    Reply
  9. Amy Tee

    I am new to the wonderful world of blogging, and these are some handy tips that I can start employing now! So thank you!

    Reply
  10. Miss ED

    Fantastic, I was literally agonizing over category compression a few days ago, and threw my hands up in frustration after an hour (I’ve got roughly two years worth of posts to sort through!) and the dead link finder is very clutch, thanks for sharing 🙂

    Reply
  11. Kate

    Great post, lots of useful information here! My blog is super new, but this gives me a couple good ideas to put in place now, and stuff to keep in mind for the future. 🙂

    Reply
  12. Crystin

    Spring Cleaning! I really don’t feel like doing this, but some of your points are ones that I definitely need to get on.

    Reply
  13. Monica // crossthat

    Great post! These things are so obvious but bloggers often just over look them. Cheers to the plugins you’ve poasted. It’s made spring cleaning a whole lot easier.

    Reply
  14. Angie

    this was really helpful! i hardly ever think about maintenance and keeping things updated but it’s essential to keep the blog growing! thank you 🙂

    Reply
  15. Michael Pollock

    Some excellent points and tips raised here. I know that I myself am guilty of letting my blog go – who has the time anymore – but you have awoken in me the realisation that maintaining a blog is just as important as actually having one. So, I pledge to go through my blog over the weekend and give it a much needed clean up!

    Reply
  16. Michael Woodham

    Gosh, this is something that I am definitely guilty of! I think it comes down to having such a busy lifestyle and having people whom you can delegate these sorts of tasks to – at the end of the day, it will never be done as well if you had done it yourself. Thanks for sharing, it’s time we sat up and took notice.

    Reply