Around this time of year, traffic on my blog starts to dip downward. It doesn't completely bottom out, but a quick glance at my Google Analytics tells me that most people are not hanging out on fashion blogs right now. While that may seem a little disappointing at first, it's actually a good thing. One, it gives you the chance to a take guilt-free break from writing new content for your site, and two, it lets you catch up on a few things in the back-end of your blog that you may have been putting off…intentionally or not. Low traffic periods are the perfect time to make adjustments to your blog. Here are a few projects you can work on during the holidays, if you're so inclined.
- Improve your site's SEO. When I started blogging, I didn't know the first thing about SEO, and it still shows in some of my older posts. If, like me, you learned about search engine optimization on the fly, the holiday downtime is a great opportunity to go back and make some of those older posts more search engine friendly. Whether it's adjusting your title, excerpt, or category, many of your posts can likely be improved in some way.
- Fix broken links. Even if you're really meticulous about links, there's a good chance you still have some broken ones on your blog. That's not necessarily your fault, especially if you link out to retailers; stores change their links all the time. However, broken links can adversely affect your website rankings (not to mention frustrate your readers), so it's good idea to keep your link profile as clean as possible. Spend some time checking out old posts for bad links and deleting or redirecting as necessary.
- Update your affiliate links. Some of this updating will fall under point 2 (for example, if you deep-linked to an item that's no longer available, then that link should be updated), but you'll also want to look over your affiliate links if you've joined a new program recently. Many bloggers will talk about a store or brand for months or even years before making the decision to become an affiliate partner. If that describes you, you may want to spend some time in your blog archives updating those older posts with your new affiliate link.
- Reinforce your site security. This probably should have been #1, but I'm writing this post in a haze of Christmas egg nog, so please do forgive me. The holidays are a great time to make your site more secure. Check all your plug-ins for the most recent updates. Change your passwords. Install a security plug-in if you haven't already. Make a site backup. We all know how important this stuff is, but sometimes it gets shuffled around on the to-do list without ever actually getting done. Take the time to handle it right now.
- Review your blog policies. Whether that's your advertising policy, affiliate policy, comment policy, or what have you, the end of the year is a perfect time to make policy changes for the new year. If there's something you've been wanting to do differently, kick off 2014 on the right foot by making those changes now.
What kind of tweaks do you make on your blog during downtime? Any suggestions for your fellow IFB-ers? Please share in the comments!
[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]