Hundreds of thousands of blogs are started each year. Everyone has their own reasons for blogging, but the one common link between them all is the desire to inform their readers. Whether it's a mother blogging about her family or a company blogging about its products, the main reason for blogging is to get the information out there for others to see.
Categories help readers find certain subject matter on your blog. They are broad, general subjects that many posts go into. Using the pellet gun example, you might categorize this post under "Guns." Other posts related to guns would also be listed in this category no matter what type of gun you are writing about. When someone comes to your blog and wants to know more about guns, they can search in the "gun" category and find every single post you've written and labeled "Guns."
Tags are a more specific way for bloggers to categorize their posts. Tags are specific words related directly to the subject matter of the post. If someone only wants to know about pellet guns and searches for that specific phrase, they will only see posts specifically tagged with "pellet guns." Tagging a blog post also helps with search engine optimization to bring in more traffic to your blog. When someone searches for the term "pellet guns" on the web, your post will show up somewhere in the results.
Not all blogging platforms are created equal. Some do not include the use of categories and some have both categories and tags. Many bloggers use both interchageably, but there is a difference between the two. Michael Martine explains it best in a post he wrote a few years ago.
"Categories only live in one place, but tags can repeat themselves and live in many places at once. Categories are like big buckets to divide the information itself, but tags are ways of labeling and identifying characteristics about the information."
Through the use of categories and tags, you can make searching and reading easier for your visitors and help yourself gain more traffic. Use them consistently, and include a tag cloud in your sidebar, for a professional looking blog that people will return to time and time again.
- Register for an account and enter your blog information.
- Begin visiting other blogs. In order to move your blog up in the listing, you must visit 30 other blogs a day. LinkReferral keeps track.
- Review 5 blogs a day to move even further up in the list.
- Post once daily in the forum.
- Favorite one blog a day you find interesting.
by Live, Laugh, Blog | 8/14/2012 01:22:00 PM in | 0 comments
|Photo courtesy of MikeBlogs via flickr|
A few weeks or maybe it's months later, you get a notification that the photo you used belongs to someone else and they order you to take it down. You've unknowingly used a photo copyrighted by someone else and they aren't happy about it. If you're lucky, you'll be asked to take it down and that will be the end of it. If you're not so lucky, the owner will sue you and you'll have to go through a court battle and probably pay for using the photo.
Copyright infringement is raging out of control on the Internet these days. It's difficult to tell which photos are copyrighted and which aren't, but that's no excuse in the eyes of the law. In an effort to stop copyright problems, Google announced last week that they will begin punishing sites who blatantly use copyrighted material. What this means is, if you are notified repeatedly to remove copyrighted material from your site, Google will punish you by lowering your rank in their index, or even worse, remove your site from their index altogether.
When looking for images for your posts, use sites like Creative Commons because they specialize in photos that do not contain copyright. Be sure to read the rules for using the photos because the owner may require that you give credit to him when you post the photo. If you don't know if a photo is copyrighted, it's best to pass it over and find one that you're certain is free to use. When it comes to using someone else's work, it's better safe than sorry.
The blogosphere is a huge place full of people and blogs connecting and interacting with one another for one common purpose: to gain more readers. After all, what's the point of writing a blog if no one reads it, right? You may have started your blog because you just wanted a place to share pictures and funny things that happen in your daily life, or maybe you started it to promote your business or beliefs. Whatever the reason, it is important to engage with other bloggers in order to gain new readers. You have to give a little to gain a little.