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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Organizing Your Blog 203 - Closet Blogs

Your blog is up and running, and you've got 30... maybe 40 posts.  How do you organize it all so people can find the articles they're looking for?

You might say: Oh, let's organize it like a closet.  But let's be honest.  If your closet is like mine it's a big jumble of clothes on the shelf, the hangers have been ignored, and I have no method of organizing it all to find what I want to wear.  Somehow this just doesn't seem like an appealing way to run a blog.

So let's look at our blogs for a moment in relation to a closet.  Like a closet a blog is a place you can store (or display) your posts for whoever wants to pass by and open the door.  We don't want them to open the door and see a big mess however.  Even using hangers it might be hard to distinguish a pattern of where things go.  We can try color coding our clothes and hanging them up, but it still looks a little messy.  Blogs are like this too.  You can code your posts by turning them into series, but if they're all to be found in the archive or by just going from page 1 to page 100 at the bottom of the page, it's still going to be difficult for people to find exactly what they want.

Luckily for us Blogger has given us a way to organize our posts just like we might buy a storage unit with drawers to go inside our closet.  We can put one type of thing in each drawer, and then label the drawers.  Things are tucked away then, the closet looks cleaner, and we know exactly where to find everything we need. Ta da, welcome to the feature of adding pages to your blog.

Our post HERE will get you started on making pages, but lets talk about benefits of using them for a moment first.

Take a look at the tabs at the top of this blog and you'll see that we've got six distinct pages (drawers) for different types of posts.  Now when people come to Hot Shot Blogger, instead of having to try to sift through every post we've ever written, they can open up the right page and browse through only the topics that are of interest to them.

We've done this by creating pages, and then linking to specific posts written in each category.  Having a blog organized in this way allows the landing page (Home page) to be used in a different manner than simply displaying a jumble of posts.  You can add a content slider, or feature only your best articles on the front page. It leaves room to run promotions for your followers, or dress up the blog with a well crafted image or description.

Use a critical eye (or borrow a pair from a friend) and go over your blog to see where you can organize and tuck things neatly into pages.  This will add to ease of use, and will add to the enjoyment of users, who may now return because the blog looks more professional and usability has gone up.

Be sure to check out our other great posts on building your blog!


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