Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

This post may contain affiliate links.  I may be compensated for any purchases you make by clicking on the link.  I was sent a free Chococurb Classic Subscription Box in exchange for my honest review of this product.  All opinions are my own. I am not a food or nutrition expert. If you have certain allergies to food products, it is your responsibility to review all nutritional information prior to purchasing or consuming these products. 

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Subscription Box:  Chococurb Classic

Cost: $35 a month plus free shipping.

Coupon: 10% off with code GOASK 

Product Contents: 5 to 7 gourmet, premium chocolate items each month.

This product ships only to the United States.

Registration Process: It is a very easy process to set up your first Chococurb subscription box at www.chococurb.com. The homepage has a blue “Get Started” button. Clicking on this button sends you to the next page to complete your chocolate profile. The chocolate profile allows you to tell Chococurb what your preferences are so that your Chococurb Subscription Box can be customized.

The first step in completing your chocolate profile is to tell Chococurb why you are signing up for their service. Basically, there are three options:

  • One for those who want to upgrade their chocolate game.
  • Two for those who just love chocolate and want to learn more about it.
  • Three is for those who crave chocolate but don’t want to have to go to the store just to get it.

The second step in completing your chocolate profile is to tell Chococurb what your chocolate IQ is. You can choose from beginner, intermediate, advanced, or expert.

The third step is really getting into the fun part of setting up your subscription box. Here is where you tell Chococurb exactly what kind of chocolate you like. You can choose from milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or white chocolate. You then tell Chococurb what you want to put in your dream box. The options here include:

  • chocolate with alcohol
  • chocolate with caramel
  • chocolate with coffee
  • chocolate with fruit
  • chocolate with nuts
  • chocolate with spices
  • chocolate with tea
  • pure chocolate

Once you have completed your chocolate profile, you will be asked to enter in your first name, last name, email address, password, birthday, and an option to tell Chococurb how you heard about them. Pretty please….tell them you heard about them at Go Ask Your Daddy!

Once you hit the blue sign-up button, you are taken to the subscription page.  Here, you have two choices to choose from. The first choice is the Chococurb Mini Box, which comes with a personalized assortment of three gourmet, premium chocolate items each month. This choice starts at just $20 per month. The box I received, and will be reviewing today, is the Chococurb Classic Box. If you’re interested in ordering the Classic Box, select the blue choose button to proceed to check out.

You are presented with three different subscription choices:

  1. One month
  2. Three months
  3. Six months

Once you have selected your subscription, enter in your shipping address. If you have a promo code, which you do at the top of this review, enter it in the box and hit the blue apply button. You’ll then be given your subtotal and the total for your purchase.

Once you’ve entered in your shipping and billing information, you will then complete your purchase. From here on out, you will wait less than a week for your first personalized subscription box to arrive in the mail.

What came in my box:

I received 5 pieces of chocolate in the complementary subscription box that Chococurb sent me for review purposes:

  • Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate
  • Fran’s Macadamia Gold Bar
  • Pitch Dark Pinot Noir Salt & Chocolate
  • Amedi Toscano Blond
  • Theo Cinnamon Horchada

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate 

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Ingredients: Organic Cacao & Organic Cane Sugar

Weight: 2 oz (57g)

Value: $8.50

Taste Test Results: This one was my favorite of the 5 pieces because I enjoy very sweet chocolates with mixed in cherry flavors.


Fran’s Macadamia Gold Bar

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Ingredients: Caramel and macadamia nuts covered in dark chocolate

Weight: 1.5 oz (42g)

Value:  $5

Taste Test Results: Not my overall favorite, but is one that tasted great and left me wanting for more. I normally like my chocolate without nuts, but this one is one I’d buy more of because it was the perfect mixture.


Pitch Dark Pinot Noir Salt & Chocolate

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Ingredients: Cacao, cane sugar, cocoa butter, Jacobsen Pinot Noir Sea Salt

Weight: 1.86 oz (52.7g)

Value: $8.00

Taste Test Results: I’ve never been a fan of salty chocolate, and it remains true with this one. It just didn’t have the flavor I’d expect from a piece of chocolate I’m known to buy.


Amedi Toscano Blond

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

 

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Ingredients: Cocoa mass, cane sugar, cocoa butter, dried fruit (10% peach, apricot), vanilla. Cocoa min. 63%. May contain traces of hazelnut, almond, pistachio, walnut, milk.

Weight: 50g

Value: $7.83

Taste Test Results: Absolutely perfect chocolate! I don’t normally associate fine chocolate coming from Italy, at least chocolate I’ve had in the past, but this one surprised me!  I would order this one again!


Theo Cinnamon Horchada

Chococurb Classic Subscription Box Review and Coupon

Ingredients: Cane Sugar+, Cocoa Beans+, Cocoa Butter+, Milk Powder, Crisped Brown Rice*, Crisped Quinoa+, Cinnamon+, Ground Vanilla Bean*+. CONTAINS: MILK
*Organic +Fair Trade Contains 79% FT Ingredients. Allergen Information: Manufactured on shared equipment with products containing eggs, wheat, peanuts and tree nuts.

Weight: 1.9 oz (53g)

Value: $3.00

Taste Test Results: Chocolate mixed with cinnamon and quinoa? Definitely a first for me, but surprisingly, was one of my favorite! Very tasty!


Overall Review: This is the very first chocolate subscription box I have tried, and honestly, I’m not one to pay $35 per month just for chocolate. I will say, though, that if you are a true chocolate connoisseur, Chococurb hits the sweet spot in terms of quality. These chocolates measure up to par with chocolates I had while traveling in Germany. I like that there are two boxes.  If the Classic box is a little out of your budget, the Mini box surely can satisfy both your sweet tooth and your wallet.  If you haven’t already, give Chococurb a try today with an exclusive 10% off coupon code for Go Ask Your Daddy readers – GOASK.

Check out all of my reviews here!

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

I can’t believe it’s almost Mother’s Day! Winter has flown by and now spring is in full bloom. You still have plenty of time to find the perfect Mother’s Day gift. If you are like me, coming up with a great gift idea every year can be a challenge.  Here are some great gift ideas surely to put a smile on mom’s face!

Flowers

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

There are always great deals on flowers for Mother’s Day. You can never go wrong with a beautiful bouquet of roses, lilies, or tulips. Many of the main stream florists will put out coupon codes especially for Mother’s Day. Search the web for the flower special for Mother’s Day and you’re sure to find great discounts. You can also never go wrong with a local florist. If you have a trusted shop you’ve used in the past, call them and ask if there is a repeat customer discount, or any other special discount available for Mother’s Day.

Breakfast in Bed

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

What mom doesn’t like to have breakfast in bed?  This is a very simple way to show mom how much you appreciate all that she does for the family. Have your dad help you make a simple breakfast items such as pancakes, eggs, sausage, bacon, and orange juice.

The most important thing about this gift is to not let mom do any of the work. If you are the husband, make this the first thing she sees in the morning. By now, hopefully you know what she likes and what she doesn’t like. Make the start of her day relaxing, tasting, and special! Men, you will have to wake up early to accomplish this. Take the time and make an effort to make this gift extra special for her!

A Spa Day

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

We have several local spas in the Dayton area that are top notch. They often provide special services for moms around the Mother’s Day holiday. All it takes is a phone call or a visit to local spas to find out what deals they have. I recommend scheduling her a massage and a pedicure. This is a gift that Mom will surely love and can use anytime she’s ready. Plus, it gives her time to herself to relax without the husband or kids for a while!

I’ve given my wife a spa day gift before, and it’s always been one of those gifts she almost always immediately uses. Be creative with the services you choose for her. Don’t be afraid to call and ask about the spa’s most popular services. Many spas offer monthly or annual memberships. This is a great opportunity to schedule these appointments for her ahead of time and all she has to do is show up. Great, huh?

Maid Service

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

OK, this may be one of the more expensive gifts to get mom for Mother’s Day, but can truly be something that she really enjoys. No mom will tell you she would not enjoy having a maid service come do a full cleaning of the house. Prices for maid services will depend on the size of your house, and the level of detail work you would like to have done. One good idea for this gift is to make it a surprise. Schedule the cleaning for a time when you know she’ll be out of the house, and when she returns home she’ll come home to a clean house. An instant Mother’s Day success!

One piece of advice for you if you do choose to hire a maid service to surprise your wife or mom is to call several companies to get comparative rates. Some companies book out well in advance, so know what you want and when you want it weeks before Mother’s Day. Some companies also only stay for a minimum. Decide what you want cleaned (I suggest the dirtiest spots in the house (kitchen, living room, bathrooms, KIDS’ ROOMS!)

Kids can contribute too!

It’s very important for dads to include the kids in with gift-giving on Mother’s Day. It’s easy to factor them out of the decision since they don’t usually have a lot of money saved for a gift. Gifts from kids can be personally-made free gifts that mom will love.

With the vast variety of social media networks out there, there are even more and more opportunities to give mom an electronic gift. There’s a great Mother’s Day song on Youtube that moms will surely love. Dads, help your kids craft a special email that falls into mom’s email box on Mother’s Day. When she watches the video, she’s sure to have a melted heart and a giant grin on her face.

Pinterest also has such a great selection of ideas. Simply perform a search for Mother’s Day gift ideas for kids, and you’ll be presented with more than you could possibly imagine. The key is to let your kids do the work and let them present it to mom on Mother’s Day. My mom always told me that the gift she loves the most were the gifts that my brother and I made for her. We don’t have to spend a lot of money to show mom how much we appreciate her. Just kids make from the heart are the ones that mom will treasure for years and years to come.

Don’t procrastinate

Great Mothers Day Gift Ideas

If you’re like any man, the tendency is there to procrastinate. The key to finding great gifts at a great price is to continue searching for the best coupon codes and the best services weeks before Mother’s Day. A lot of merchants put out their Mother’s Day products at least a month in advance. Do your research, decide what gift are going to buy, and don’t wait until the last minute.

Speak back

Are you a mother? What have been your favorite Mother’s Day gift? What ideas do you have that you could share with the readers today? Let us know in the comments below. I look forward to reading what you have to say!

How to Start a Blog in 2017

How to Start a Blog in 2017

This post contains affiliate links, which means I’ll make a little bit of pocket change to keep this blog up and running when you make a purchase through them.  Thanks as always for your support!

Crazy 8 Sale On Now!

There are millions upon millions of blogs in the world. If you’ve finally decided to take the opportunity to earn some extra income by blogging, this is the post for you. My goal today is to explain the critical steps necessary to getting off to a strong start in the blogging world

I’m relatively new to the blogging world. I didn’t start until late 2015. At that time, my blog wasn’t about making money, but more about documenting my experiences as a dad of 4 kids. As I slowly got acquainted to the blogging world, I quickly began to realize that I needed to do more than just write.

Why Start A Blog in 2017?

There are many reasons you would want to start a blog. Here are a few of those:

  • Make money – Most people start a blog as a way to earn a full-time income, or to supplement existing income.  Blogging has a very low startup cost and the level of knowledge needed to succeed is relatively low. This doesn’t mean that it’s going to be easy. Running a blog is hard work and takes a lot of time and effort.
  • Promote your business – If you already have a business, starting a blog is a great way to promote the business and connect with your clients.
  • Connect with others – Blogging is a fantastic way to build common ground, touch lives, and form communities of like-minded individuals. I can’t tell you how valuable the new connections I’ve made are to the success of my blog.

Steps to get up and running today

Here are the main topics we’ll touch on today.  After reading these steps, you should be able to have your blog up and running within minutes.

  1. Determine your subject matter
  2. Decide on a platform
  3. Choose a web hosting provider
  4. Find a creative domain name
  5. Choose a theme
  6. Write your first post
  7. Share your posts
  8. Incorporate affiliate links
  9. Continuously improve

Determine your subject matter

The very first step in starting a blog is figuring out what you are going to write about.  I don’t care if you are the most popular person in the world, if you write about lame and boring topics, no one is going to waste time reading what you have to say. You must choose what you are going to focus on before you move any further in the process, because the theme and domain name of your blog will depend on this. My blog, Go Ask Your Daddy, focuses on several topics that I know a lot about – blogging tools and tips, parenting tips from a dad’s perspective, and the Catholic faith.

You need to do a lot of research before you decide on your niche. Find out what subject matter does well. Know your audience – who are you talking to?  My blog caters to several types of audiences. For the blogging tips, it caters to just about anyone curious about starting and promoting a blog.  I’ve found that mostly women between the ages of 25-35 are interested in what I have to say on parenting topics. The key to succeeding in your niche is knowing who you are gearing your content to, and catering your posts to them.

Decide on a blogging platform

Okay, so you’ve chosen your niche.  Great!  The next step is determining how you are going to produce your content. There are several options available to choose from, so do your research ahead of time and choose the one that suits your needs the most. Watch out for the free services. Yes, they are free, which is good for some things, but let me tell you from experience, free is not always the best route to go. If you are looking to make a name for yourself and rise among the professional bloggers, free is the wrong way to go. WordPress does offer a free version, but as I’ve said before in previous posts, you don’t want to use a domain name that’s obviously free.

I use WordPress, have used WordPress for 2 years, and don’t plan on using anything but WordPress in the future. WordPress is the industry standard for blogging. It has a little bit of a learning curve, but is very effective in doing everything you need to do to run a successful blog. You’ll see two types of WordPress sites out there today. WordPress.com and WordPress.org.  Wordpress.com is not a self-hosted option, which means you are limited in what you can do and the income you can earn. WordPress.org means you are self-hosted and can do more in terms of options and income. Choose wisely!

Choose a web hosting provider

One of the most critical decisions you need to make when starting a blog is in choosing a web hosting provider. A web hosting company provides you with the online space to publish your blog. You will store all of your online files through your hosting company.

There are many, many providers out there.  If you don’t do research on anything else I tell you today, do your research on web hosting companies. Your hosting plan can make or break your blog very easily. If you have a hosting provider that is notoriously slow and/or down, your blog will suffer.

I started my blog using Bluehost. I found them to be very reliable and also found a lot of my blogging friends used them as well. They have good options, fast and reliable speed, and their customer support is top-notch. When my year was up with them, I was angered to see a major increase in the cost of my hosting, which caused me to have to go to another provider – eHost. I hadn’t heard too much about eHost, so I was initially skeptical about switching to them.  eHost has been very stable and their range of options are wide. The only complaint I have after the last few months is that their technical support responses have been slow by email. I recommend using their live chat vs sending them an email.

Find a creative domain name

Most of the time, you can choose your domain name at the same time you are signing up for web hosting, but this isn’t always the case. If you find a cheaper price elsewhere, but want to host it with another company, you can, but I find it easier to do everything with a one-stop shop. Your domain name is the web address people will type in to find your blog. Mine is www.goaskyourdaddy.com.

Be creative when you are choosing a domain name. Some bloggers go with their actual name, while others use a creative name. I chose www.goaskyourdaddy.com because I knew people would know I’m a daddy blogger, and it’s easy to remember. Make sure you select a domain name that relates to your niche. It’s going to go EVERYWHERE  – in email signatures, in Facebook groups, on media kits and business cards, etc. Choose wisely!

Choose a theme

Since I use WordPress, I have access to THOUSANDS of creative themes for my blog. WordPress makes it easy to browse for themes inside of the dashboard. What I like most about it is that you can filter down to the features you want the theme to have. This saves a lot of time browsing through themes that don’t meet your needs.  Right now, I’m using the light version of my theme, but plan on upgrading to the pro soon. Your theme should reflect your blog’s niche.  There are some themes that are too noisy in terms of color and features – steer clear of these. Make sure your theme provides you with all the tools you need to set your blog up to your expectations. Most of the time, you’ll have to invest a little money here. It’s money well-spent!

Write your first post

Now that your blog is ready to go, it’s time to write your first post. I do want to admit that my very first post sucked badly. This is because I had no clue in how to structure a blog post. Now that I’ve done my research on the best ways to structure blog posts, readers have given me positive feedback. My trick in structuring my blog posts is by using an outline. An outline allows you time to think about where you want to place your headers and links, and gives you time to analyze the structure before you write it down. Outlines do take a little extra time, but in my opinion are worth every second because it makes the post much easier to read and follow.

In WordPress, you have the option to save as a draft, which is a great feature if you like to write in pieces and then come back to finish up. There are several other options you’ll want to pay attention to as you are creating your post.

  • Categories – Categories are like the table of contents in a book. Let’s use my site for an example of how categories work. Look to the right of this post into my sidebar. You’ll see a drop down menu called “Categories.” Let’s say you want to see every post I’ve written about sports. I created a “Sports” category and selected it every time I wrote a sports-related blog post. If you select “Sports” from the Category menu, you’ll be presented with any post I’ve written about Sports. Go ahead and try it, but come back to this post!
  • Tags – Tags are more like an index than a table of contents. Tags are keywords that tell the reader what the post is about. Go ahead and scroll to the bottom of this post. You’ll see I’ve included several tags that tie to the subject matter of this post. Tags are also a good way to group related posts. Think of them as being just like hashtags on Twitter. If you click on a hashtag in Twitter, you’ll be presented with any posts that include that tag. It’s a great way to read related content.
  • Featured Image – The featured image is the image that will show up at the top of your blog post.  Look at the top of this post. Do you see the very cool image I’ve created for this post?  That’s the featured image.  Whenever you share your post, unless you’ve told WordPress to use a different image, by default, it will use the featured image. I use a creative featured image for every blog post.
  • Sharing –  Under the featured image is an option to select which social media sites you want to share the post to once you’ve hit publish. While you can connect to any service you want, I usually share to the big boys – Facebook and Twitter.
  • Post format – I don’t mess with this feature very much, but can be useful depending on the type of post you are writing. If you are only posting an image or a video, this feature will format the post to that particular medium. Since I primarily post in regular text and images, I leave this setting at “Standard.”

Share your posts

You’ve spent hours writing and perfecting your post before publishing it. The next step is critical in getting readers to it. I always share my posts through a variety of mediums: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Flipboard, etc. I take the extra steps in sharing my new post inside the many Facebook groups in which I participate.

Incorporate affiliate links

If you are looking to make income with your blog, and don’t want to rely on Google Adsense, affiliate links are fantastic income producers. If you find the opportunity to incorporate an affiliate link to promote a product that relates to your post, do it. I wrote a very informative post on how to make the most of affiliate links. I recommend checking it out, as well as my post on how to make passive income with affiliate marketing.

I’m a big supporter of ShareASale. They are one of the best networks out there with thousands of approved merchants. I wrote a review of ShareASale earlier this year so if you are trying to decide whether or not to check them out, read the review to help make that decision.

Continuously improve

I hope you’ve found this post helpful.  One more piece of I advice I have for you is to always be willing to change things up and find ways to improve.  Stay updated on the latest blogging trends and always look for ways to stick out above the competition. There are so many ways to get your content out there. I’m currently writing an Ebook composed of all of my blogging posts.  This post will be in it as well. The Ebook will allow me to share my content even more.

If you have any questions about how to start a blog (that I didn’t answer today), feel free to email me at jeremy@goaskyourdaddy.com.

5 Reasons Why No One Cares About Your Blog

Hey gang! Are you one of those bloggers struggling to get comments, likes, and shares on your shiny new blog post? Are you getting frustrated at the end of the month to see that you’ve actually LOST followers? For many bloggers, the only sound in the world they hear after posting what they think is the best blog post they’ve ever written is the sound of chirping crickets.  Sound like you? If so, this post is perfect for you!

Today, I’m going to talk about 5 reasons why this is happening and give you the tools you need to overcome this.

1 – You’re spitting out garbage

Producing high-quality content is CRITICAL in drawing in and maintaining readers. If you are posting just to post, it’s not going to get you anywhere. I don’t post a blog post unless I know that the content I’m writing solves a reader’s problem or provides guidance on an important topic.  The post I’m writing today helps solve a problem. You may think it’s fun to write about a random activity you did during the day, but to 99% of the rest of the world, it’s just not that interesting. Sorry to inform you, but it’s true.

Too many blogs I follow today seem to post 2-3 times a day with random, unimportant information. I usually just hit the delete button because I just am not interested in reading random gobbldy-gook.

Before you publish your next blog post, ask yourself these questions:

  1. What do I plan to accomplish with this blog post?
  2. Am I providing solutions to common problems that my readers experience?
  3. Is this information relevant to my readers?

If you can’t answer these questions with valid answers, chances are your post will not get many eyes on it. Think twice before posting it. Find ways to make that post interesting, useful, and valuable. If you can’t find ways, scrap it!

2 – Your site is hard to follow

Blog design and structure is so important in bringing in and retaining readers. If your site is covered with pop up ads and useless buttons all over the place, it’s going to make it very difficult to navigate and follow.  Limit your WordPress widgets! The more widgets you have, the slower your site will be.

When a visitor comes to your site, you have less than several seconds to impress (or detract) them. Make the most of the space you have to only include vital information about you, your blog, your social media contact information, and how to subscribe.

Your blog’s sidebar can be a very tempting place to throw in all of those “award” buttons you’ve collected, or all of your social media feeds. Keep in mind, though, while it’s not always a bad thing to have a full sidebar, each of those things you add to your sidebar contribute to the overall loading time of your site.  Not only that, but it also can make your site look cluttered. I recently removed all of my social media feeds from my sidebar. If someone wants to see my Twitter feed, they can follow me and view it on Twitter itself. Why waste valuable space on the sidebar?

3 – You’re posting too much

Yes, there is such thing as posting too many blog posts.  Unless you have groundbreaking news or information to share with your writers, don’t overwhelm their inbox with 10 posts a day. My personal goal is no more than 3 posts per week.  I spend the rest of my time participating in my Facebook groups, my Pinterest group boards, and engaging with other bloggers.

The reason I spend so much of my time engaging with others is that your readers need to see that you are a genuine person, full of valuable ideas and information to share, and not just another one of the million plus bloggers trying to earn a quick buck.

Set a schedule for when and what you are going to post. Stick to it. There are going to be times when it’s ok to ignore that rule. As I’ve increased my following and influence in the blogging world, I get more opportunities to review products and host giveaways. Since those come in unannounced most of the time, I usually prioritize them and post them right away.  But, in general, never bombard your readers with tons of worthless blog posts unless you have a damn good reason!

4 – You’re not promoting enough

No one will read your posts if they don’t know about it.  Utilize your social media channels to promote your valuable content. Use keywords and the right hashtags to make your posts fall under more eyes. Make SEO research part of your posting process.

There are many good tools to help you share your content. I personally use Hootsuite to schedule blog posts to Facebook and Twitter. I also recommend trying out Tailwind and Boardbooster for your Pinterest account.  While there are fees tied to all of these, sometimes you’ve got to put a little money into it to get a good rate of return.

The bottom line is – just hitting the publish button isn’t enough. No one will see your post unless they have subscribed to your blog. Your key is to draw in NEW readers while retaining CURRENT readers. Here’s how I share each and every post I publish:

5 – You don’t own a domain name

How many times have you seen someone with a blogname.wordpress.com URL and thought to yourself – FREE blog? NOT having a customized domain name that truly reflects your blog topics is a big turnoff! Spend the less than $10 per year it takes to own your own domain and self-host your blog. When I see someone’s blog URL isn’t customized, I move on and don’t value the information they’re sharing.  I’m 99% sure other serious bloggers do the same.

Time to get to work!

If any of the above applies to you, it’s time to get to work. Procrastinating on making these changes only continues to hurt you. Spend the time and money it takes to get a good blog moving in the direction of a great blog. If you identify with making any of these mistakes, the time is now to improve!

There are resources out there to help. I recommend my Blogging Tools and Tips Pinterest group board as a good place to start. There are over 2,000 pins strictly about blogging from seasoned professionals on this board.  Sort through them and see if any of them strike a chord with you. I’ve found unending value from reading how others do things and applying what I’ve learned to my own site.

Join my Blogger Share and Promo Facebook group.  We are all about sharing content, providing advice, and helping each other’s blogs grow.

Until next time!

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

Hey, you know the deal, I gotta tell you that this post contains affiliate links. 

I haven’t been a blogger for long – just over 1 year to be exact. In that time I’ve learned a lot of what to do and what NOT to do. There are 8 specific steps you can take today to make your blog’s traffic increase light-years ahead of where it is today. I’m really excited to share these 8 steps with you today in hopes that you will experience the same success that I have.

Increase Word Length

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

It’s been proven that Google, as well as the other search engines out there, love longer posts. But, you shouldn’t just focus on hitting 1,000 words per post.  If your content doesn’t help anyone solve a problem, or provide a wealth of knowledge, what good is word count? Specific examples and specific directions lead to more blog engagement.

I challenged myself as a part of my New Year’s resolutions to write posts with a minimum of 800 words.  The posts where I’ve hit or exceeded this target have seen higher engagement and page views. Rather than throwing together 2-3 500 word blog posts per week, I reduced my blog posts to 1-2 longer-crafted posts focused on real engagement.

When I reviewed my older blog posts, I quickly came to notice that the shorter blog posts still did ok, but they weren’t ground-breaking. I was lucky to get 10 views on them.  Occasionally, they would see higher views, but not to the extent that my longer posts get.

Make the Sharing Process a No-Brainer

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

Have you ever been to another blog post and tried to figure out where the share bar was? You read some super cool content, but now have no easy way to share it. Bummer, right? It is YOUR job as the author to make it a breeze to share content across multiple mediums.

Since I use WordPress to run my blog, I rely on Shareaholic buttons.  Shareaholic is a simple WordPress plugin that makes sharing content across dozens of social media accounts so easy. I use the float buttons on the left side of my blog and make it easy for readers to click and share. It shouldn’t be harder than that.  If readers are having to scroll to find your share buttons, click on a drop down menu, or even go to another page, you’re set up to fail. MAKE IT SIMPLE!!

Focus on Pinterest

Pinterest is by far my most engaging social media account.  Not only do I share a lot of other content across multiple boards, but every time I create a blog post, I’m posting it to one or more Pinterest boards.

Join group boards and become a collaborator on boards that fit your niche. You’ll find that repins will easily quadruple with the use of automatic scheduling apps such as Tailwind or Boardbooster. Yes, there is a fee to use these services, but it’s worth it in the end. For a small price, you can dramatically blast traffic well beyond where you ever thought was possible.

I spent all of February doing nothing but reworking all of my images to be friendly for Pinterest. I had hundreds of blog posts – but all of them got worked over again. Making your images Pinterest friendly is key to seeing higher engagement and repins.

Oh yeah, and please don’t set up a Pinterest account without creating matching cover photos for all of your boards. It’s worth it!  It makes your account look professional, clean, and consistent. Do it. No matter how much time it may take.

Content is Key

No matter what else you do to your blog –  whether it be a new theme, shiny banner ads, or slick widgets running down the sidebar, no one is going to give a rat’s ass about your blog unless you write useful and helpful content. This is why it’s so important to pick your niche right away and go with it. Writing on a slew of various topics and not keying in on your niche will set you up for a very useless blog. As a matter of fact, there are a few blogs I’ve unsubscribed from over the past few weeks for that reason. Some bloggers are just spitting out crap every day just to post. I guess that’s OK if you aren’t trying to build a brand.  Quality vs quantity is ALWAYS better!

So, I’m going to give you a challenge for reworking your content. Go back through each post and find at least 2 more ways to present the content. Did you know that some blog posts can easily become videos or slide shows?  Creating your content in more than one medium GREATLY increases the opportunity to increase views. Try it!

Cut out Crap

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

We all have crap on our blogs that we know isn’t the best content.  If you are unable to find use for it, or rework it into valuable content, hit the DELETE button immediately. I went through every single blog post over the course of 30 days, and deleted the crap off of my blog. You want to put your best foot forward every time you create a post.

I had a weekly linky party that wasn’t getting much attention, but took a lot of time to manage and schedule. I cut it out of my regular posts and opened up more time to try newer and better things. Of course, what works for me may not work for you. If something is drawing in a ton of views, by all means don’t cut it out. Be smart about it!

Reviews and Giveaways

8 Things You Can Do to Quadruple Blog Traffic

I’ve hosted a few giveaways, and I can tell you there is a lot of interest in FREE STUFF! If you don’t have a product of your own to offer, don’t cry. I’ve reached out to multiple companies to request free stuff for the purpose of an honest review and giveaway. Sometimes the company may not respond, sometimes they may say no, but most of the time you’ll get some sort of sample.

When I wrote my latest review of Candy Club, I emailed my affiliate marketing contact to ask for a free box of candy to review. They gave me what I asked for, and as a result, I was able to draw in a lot of attention to that blog post.  And, the candy was absolutely delicious too!

Product reviews should be written in such a way that readers feel your honesty. Just because you get a free product to review doesn’t mean you have to be 100% positive about it. There are going to be times when you get a really crappy product to review. It is your responsibility to share your experiences and opinions with your readers. If you give them fluff on every review, they will move on to another review. Be honest, be candid, and be detailed!

Network

I can’t tell you how much impact being a part of Facebook groups and Pinterest boards has been in growing my network of blogging friends and boosting my traffic. One of the best ways to get your name out there is to respond to comments, form friendships with niche bloggers, and be a friend to all of those on their blogging journey as well.

I run my own Facebook group, Blogger Share and Promo Group.  As I have transitioned to more of a blogger about blogging vs a blogger about parenting and sports, I’ve been able to join specific groups of like-minded bloggers to share content and swap advice.  The information I have gained from these groups is so valuable!  By the way, it’s a small group right now, but I’m always welcome to adding new members.

Remember when I was talking about Pinterest above? Well, I also have a group board called Blogging Tools and Tips.  I’ve grown from a few pins to over 2,200 pins with over 40 collaborators. Make it a point to always follow every member of your groups and to welcome them. Be the one that opens up that first line of communication. The more ideas that are shared, the better we will all become at blogging. Make it intentional!  And, who doesn’t like their content to be shared?

Don’t Ignore Your Email List

Uh oh, I may be guilty of this one. I haven’t done much with my email list yet. I have about 60 subscribers, but right now they only get emails when I post something on my blog. I think I’m hesitant to do much more than that just because I haven’t had much experience using subscription services. I signed up for MailChimp and have a simple subscription form on my sidebar, but my goal is to really use my email list to drive affiliate sales and grow my following.

Hit the Ground Running!

I hope these tips are beneficial to you.  They have been so incredibly important to me as I have grown my following.  If you ever have any questions on any of the tips above, please email me at jeremy@goaskyourdaddy.com.  I hope you continue to succeed in your quest to high traffic!

How to Keep Calm When Money's Running Low

How to Keep Calm When Money’s Running Low

This post contains affiliate links. Go Ask Your Daddy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Amazon, the Amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and the AmazonSupply logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.

 

Why Trust National Debt Relief

There’s no doubt about it – money issues are stressful for anyone. Whether you are single, or you have a large family, when the cash stops flowing and the bills pile up, no one is feeling at ease. But, it doesn’t have to always be a stressful time. There are ways to manage income and expenses to keep everyone calm and to get back on track.

Let’s begin…

Make A List

What do you bring in?  What do you owe? Write down everything so that you can look at everything flowing in and out of your household each month. I recommend Quicken to track everything. If you are familiar with using Quicken, it is so easy to import your bank account and categorize everything so that you won’t miss anything.

Make a list of everyone’s net income.  Net income is after everything comes out of your paycheck. Then, make a list of every regular monthly expense.  Try to be exact. You’ll want to capture utilities, mortgages, insurance, tuition, credit cards, student loans, etc. No expense should stay off the list unless you’v eliminated it.

Cut Out Unnecessary Expenses

Cutting expenses is easier than you might think.  Just today, I cut my Dish Network bill from $129 per month to $75 by adjusting my programming package.  I then saved $40 with AT&T by calling their Customer Loyalty department and negotiated my internet from $80 per month down to $40.

Other ways to cut expenses include calling your utilities (water, trash, sewer, electric, gas) and setting your accounts up on budget billing.  Budget billing averages out your last 12 months of usage and creates a steady monthly payment.  This means no surprises come bill time.

Analyze how often you dine out. Do you eat out at restaurants 2-3 times a week? Cut it down to 1, or even 0. Make eating out a luxury or a reward for a special accomplishment.

Look at what you spend at the grocery store.  Buying store brands, using coupons, and only buying what you need will help make a huge dent in your grocery bill. Never go to the grocery store hungry. I’ve made that mistake way too many times.

Analyze Your Paycheck

Another great place to save money is by looking at your paycheck. Do you have the right amount of taxes withheld? Visit www.irs.gov for advice on how to calculate how many exemptions you qualify for, and adjust your paycheck accordingly.

Do you have other items coming out of your paycheck that aren’t necessary? Although putting back money into a 401K is always a great idea, most employers allow you to adjust your contribution level at any time. May temporary adjustments to this level to adjust your paycheck in a positive direction.

Call a Credit Counseling Agency

A great place for anyone to go for credit counseling advice is with certified credit counseling agencies. If you are drowning in credit card, agencies such as National Debt Relief are equipped with many different debt management plan options. Here is the link to fill out the debt relief application.

Be cautious with the agencies you choose from, as many work for credit card companies and not for the consumer. Many agencies charge a fee to participate in plans, so make sure you aren’t hurting yourself instead of helping yourself. Most agencies will work with creditors to lower interest rates and reduce minimum payments to help you get caught up and pay off debt.

Don’t Fight About Finances

The number one problem in any household usually has to do with money issues. Fighting and blaming do no good. If you follow my recommendations above, you can alleviate pain and stress caused by financial disorder.  Keep a cool head and remember that you control the outcome.

There are going to be unavoidable times when couples disagree with finances. Marital counseling, as well as financial counseling, can both be positives in the midst of disaster. Never be afraid to admit when you need the help of outside parties.

Don’t Procrastinate

The last thing you want to do when you are experiencing debt problems is to procrastinate. Not only can late payments impact your credit rating, waiting to seek help only causes the debt and late fees to mount. Take action as soon as you know you are starting to have problems.  The earlier you start seeking help, the more likely you can obtain the help that you need.

Consider Legal Help

Many people simply dig themselves in too big of a hole to be able to dig out without help. There is no shame in consulting with a bankruptcy attorney.  Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies, while they can be embarrassing, do work if all of the steps are followed.  While you will take years of a credit hit, sometimes its the only way to get completely out of debt.

When you file for bankruptcy, you are required to complete a credit counseling class before you are allowed to proceed.  Pay attention in these courses and make all efforts to follow the steps after the bankruptcy is over.

Bankruptcy may not be the right course of action for everyone, and I’m not an attorney, so seek professional help from a licensed attorney for assistance with your specific needs.

Over to You…

What ways have you found to help out your household in times of financial crisis? Share in the comments below.

Less Stress and Less debt is only 30 seconds away

America's Pastime is Back

America’s Pastime is Back

This post contains affiliate links

Team USA 2017 World Baseball Classic Champions

It’s that glorious time of year when America’s pastime returns for a brand new season. Ever since I was a tiny baby, I grew up learning about the game of baseball. I can remember my younger brother and I spending hours in our front yard (back yard if it was an away game) pretending to be stars from the Atlanta Braves.  We would pretend that the leaves hanging in the trees were the fans, and the large ditch at the front of our property was the home run area.

It seems just like yesterday that I took our old Snapper riding mower and mowed a baseball diamond in our yard. I’m not really sure if my mom and dad appreciated me doing that. My brother and I loved the game of baseball, and we shared our passion together almost every day in the summer.

My parents got me involved in baseball from the time I could swing a bat. I remember playing catcher on my t-ball team, and eventually, when I moved up to kid pitch, because infatuated with pitching. It was so enjoyable to go to the ballpark on Saturday mornings for games. I couldn’t wait for the game to start.  Everything throughout the week seemed to move slowly, until it was finally game day.

There is no greater feeling than cracking a triple with the bases loaded, or making a fabulous diving catch to save a run from scoring. I experienced it all.  Good winning seasons, bad losing seasons, and everything in between. I didn’t care if we won or lost, I just wanted to suit up and play the game.

I grew up in north Georgia, so naturally everyone in my hometown supported the Atlanta Braves. If you are about as old as me, or a little older, you probably remember how terrible many of the Braves’ seasons were.  It was horrific to go to Fulton County Stadium only to find less than 5,000 fans at a game. We had years and years of misery.

The 1990s were the absolute best time to watch the Braves. From the now very famous Sid Bream slide into home to the World Series title in 1995, the Atlanta Braves experienced more success than any other Major League Baseball team. The Braves were famous for star pitching – pitchers such as Tom Glavine, John Smoltz, and Greg Maddux should be familiar names in any sports household.

When I moved to Ohio in 2004, I went to my first Cincinnati Reds game. I immediately fell in love with the city of Cincinnati, Great American Ballpark, and the Reds organization. I didn’t know too much about the Reds, except for the Big Red Machine.  After years of terrible baseball, they finally started producing winning seasons. I was able to attend several division-clinching games – one was a walk-off home run.

Although I’m a Reds fan now, there’s always a special place in my heart for the team that got me loving baseball. Anytime I watch the Reds and Braves play, it’s always a joy to think back on my childhood.

This weekend marks a brand new season. What’s NOT to love about everything the game of baseball has to offer?  The crowds, the crack of the bat, the strategy, and the push through a 162-game season, all make baseball a unique sport from all the others. Some people complain that the game takes too long. I never thought one second about the length of games when I was growing up. Escaping to a MLB baseball game for 3-4 hours was all I ever wanted to do. I never thought things would change to make the game faster. I truly hope that the league keeps those traditions alive that make the game so great.

As a daddy, I am so lucky to be so close to a Major League ballpark, as well as a minor league team right here in our hometown. Instilling a love for baseball into my kids’ lives is a real treat for me. When I see them step up to the plate, they remind me of myself.  The smiles on their faces when they get a hit, or throw a runner out, makes it all worthwhile.

No matter what sport(s) your kids end up playing and loving, be a parent that is present in their games. Support their development, encourage them when they are down, and always keep your eyes on them during the game – PUT YOUR PHONE DOWN!  Kids want to see engaged parents who applaud and shout for joy – not face down in a phone. Make it a rule for everyone in the family – and stick to it!

Major League Baseball is Back

Major League Baseball is Back

Major League Baseball is Back

Major League Baseball is Back

What do you love most about baseball? Did you grow up playing the game?

 

Go Ask Your Daddy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Amazon, the Amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and the AmazonSupply logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.

How I Made $618.10 With My Blog in March 2017 [Income Report]

How I Made $265.84 With My Blog in March 2017 [Income Report]

This post contains affiliate links

Gymboree Sale On Now!

Once a month I publish the income and expenses for running Go Ask Your Daddy. I hope you enjoy reading my blog month-to-month and share the excitement as I turn my blog into a business.  Did you miss my February report?  Check it out here.

March 2017 Blog Stats

Top 5 viewed blog posts of the month:

Highest referrring social media outlet:  Facebook – 957 views

Link clicks:  ShareASale.com – 42 clicks

Total unique visitors: 2,223 (+765 from February)

Total page views: 3,737 (+774 from February)

Total likes: 3 (-1 from February)

Total comments: 35 (-7 from February)

Total Facebook Likes: 1,427 (+ 109 from February)

Total Instagram Followers: 1,694 (-6 from February)

Total Twitter Followers: 1,775 (+175 from February)

Total Pinterest Followers: 7,152 (+689 from February)

Total Google+ Followers: 38 (-1 from February)

Blogger Share and Promo Group Members: 93 (+ 20 from February)

Blogging Tools and Tips Pinterest Group Board Collaborators: 42 (+3 from February)

Total Income for March 2017:

  • Adsense: $2.81 (-$.74 from February)
  • Sponsored Posts: $278.24 (-$351.52 from February)

Total: $281.05 

Total Expenses for March 2017:

  • Photoshop: $10.71
  • ManageWP: $4.50

Total: $15.21

Total Profit: $265.84

Making the Most Of Affiliate Links

Making the Most Of Affiliate Links

This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated for purchases you make through them. 

Over the past few weeks, I’ve written several posts about affiliate marketing. Today, let’s talk about how to really make the most of the time and effort spent on affiliate links. Many bloggers fail to make any money off of affiliate marketing, but there are ways to maximize the opportunity.

Affiliate Marketing Definition

You see the term all the time, but what is it?  Basically, affiliate marketing, also known as affiliate advertising,  is the promotion of products and services in exchange for a commission. As an affiliate marketer, your goal is to push traffic in direction of a merchant’s website.  You earn commission whenever someone makes a purchase through the affiliate link on your site.  The amount of commission varies depending on which program you join.

How do Affiliate Links Work?

Each time you use an affiliate link inside a blog or social media post, there is a tracking cookie that is stored in the user’s browser to track sales. Merchant program their cookies to track a user’s purchase activity for different lengths of time.  For example, I may have a link with Candy Club that tracks a user’s activity for 30 days, while Cricut may track for 45. It all depends on the merchant. This information is disclosed to you up front when you apply to a specific affiliate’s program.

Driving Traffic to Merchants

The key to driving traffic to your affiliate merchants is by producing quality content. Writing quality blog posts, along with dropping in an affiliate link if there’s a product or service that relates to your post, will show your readers you are truly supporting what you write, and will prevent readers from thinking that all you are trying to do is sell something. Once you stop writing genuinely, you will lose credibility, and your subscribers won’t be far behind.

Ways to Share Affiliate Links

There are so many creative ways to share affiliate links.  Just because you are sharing them on your site doesn’t mean anyone is going to click on them and buy them. Here are several ways to creatively and effectively include affiliate links into your blog posts.

  • Banner Ads:  Banner ads are easy affiliate links to include on your blog. Simply paste the html code into your post and you’ve got a nice visual creative linked directly to your affiliate’s product. I usually use banner ads in addition to regular text links in my blog posts.
  • Tutorial posts:  Find products you want to promote, then write a post showing your users step-by-step instructions on how to use that product.
  • Persuasive posts:  Write a post comparing several products, persuading your readers to choose your affiliate’s products over a competitor product.
  • Product reviews:  Product reviews are one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to affiliate products. I wrote a review about Candy Club last week, and have already seen income from that post.  The key to product reviews is to only review products you would (and do) actually use. Readers can spot a fake a mile away. Again, the key is to be genuine about what you post.
  • Social Media: Social media is a great way to share affiliate links.  Most of the sales I have made have come from clicks originated from my social media posts.

Becoming an Affiliate

There are many different affiliate programs out there.  Here’s a list of popular ones:

When you log on to ShareASale or any other affiliate network, you get to see a grand list of all of the merchants that have signed up to participate in that network’s affiliate marketing program. Each merchant will set its own terms, conditions, and commission rates. It is your responsibility as an affiliate to read the fine print before you sign up for any program.

Once you have signed up for a program and the merchant has approved you, you now have access to all of that merchant’s coupons, discounts, banners, text links, and datafeed files. How you promote these links is totally up to you, but there are some guidelines set by the FTC that you must follow:

Disclosing Affiliate Links on Your Blog

The FTC requires bloggers promoting affiliate links to disclose this relationship to its readers. What does that mean?  Let’s explore in depth:

You’ve most likely been in a situation where you’ve had to sign a legal document.  A good example of this is when you buy a home. The seller is required to disclose certain conditions by law to you as the buyer so that you can make an educated decision.  It’s the same concept with disclosing affiliate links. Because we are making a commission off of a reader’s purchase through those links, we have to tell our readers this information so that they know. Consider it the “fine print” of your blog post.

The FTC’s purpose in requiring this disclosure is to continue to protect consumers when making online purchases. Consumers have the right to understand what they are buying.  It’s a good thing. If I were buying a car, I’d want the dealer to tell me if the car I’m buying has ever been in an accident.  If they didn’t tell me, I wouldn’t be able to make the best educated decision because I’m being left in the dark about the condition of the car.

Bottom line:  Always, always, always include a clear disclosure in every post that contains affiliate links or banners.  Don’t link to a separate disclosure page on your blog, don’t put it within the body of the post, and definitely don’t put it at the bottom of the post. None of these methods are acceptable.  While you can have a separate disclosure page for your blog, it is not sufficient for the FTC. You must disclose affiliate links BEFORE the first link appears on your post. If you haven’t been disclosing, go back to old posts and add it. The FTC can fine you for violating this rule. Don’t take that risk!

Being Genuine Is The Key

Over everything you do to promote affiliate links, being genuine is the absolute best way of all to gain your readers’ trust in a product. I make it a practice of only recommending products I believe in and would/do use myself. Don’t waste your time just trying to make a quick buck by throwing up any affiliate links.  If you promote high-quality products and services you find useful, chances are, your rate of return will be much greater.

Some of the affiliate products I love and recommend you join include:

Over to You

How have you succeeded with affiliate links?  Was this post helpful in your quest to earning affiliate income?

Candy Club Subscription Box Review

Please note: This post contains affiliate links. I received a free box of Candy Club candy in response to my review of this product. All opinions are my own. 

I’ve had the awesome opportunity several times over the last year to review the craze that is the subscription box. I’ve received the SWEETEST subscription box of them all today, and boy am I excited to share this review with you!

Today, I’m reviewing Candy Club. Candy Club is a monthly subscription box service that delivers 2-3 lbs of delicious premium candies right to your mailbox. They select and deliver the most delicious candies from all over the world.  You have the option of either letting Candy Club automatically select which candies you receive, or you can customize your own box.  I chose to customize my own box.

 

Candy Club Subscription Box Review

How it works

Candy Club, like other subscription boxes, gives you several plan options to choose from when you go to their website (www.candyclub.com).  Their 3-step process makes it very easy to get your very own candy on its way to your mailbox.

First, choose the plan that you want. You can choose from the month-to-month plan ($27.99 + shipping), the 6-month plan ($22.99 + shipping), or the 12-month plan ($19.99 + shipping), but you can cancel at any time. For the purpose of reviewing this product, Candy Club offered me the one-time option at no cost.

Second, take the candy quiz.  Of all the quizzes I ever took in high school and college, this, by far, is the SWEETEST quiz I’ve ever taken.  All you have to do is answer a few basic questions about your preferred types of candies, and Candy Club assembles your candies for you. How cool is that? There is an option to add on additional candies (for an additional fee) if you’d like. I did not do that for this review.  Once you’ve taken the quiz and Candy Club has assembled your candies, you then have the option to swap out candies if you don’t like some of the selections it has made for you.

The third step is to simply ENJOY YOUR CANDY! My family helped me with the taste testing of my candy box last night. I ordered the Fini Assorted Jellies, the Fini Sour Filled Watermelon Bricks, and the Albanese Tuxedo Almonds.

Candy Club Subscription Box Review

Candy Club Subscription Box Review

Candy Club Subscription Box Review

My Personal Opinion

I LOVE Candy Club!  The opportunity to get wonderful, delicious, premium candies delivered to your doorstep each month is such a great idea!  I can really tell the difference in the freshness of Candy Club’s candy versus the candy available in most stores today.

In being completely honest with you all, I believe the prices are a little on the high side, but are not unreasonable because you always get what you pay for, and you are definitely getting high-quality, deliciously-tasting candy from Candy Club!

I didn’t have a bad-tasting candy in any of the 3 jars I received.  My favorite?  The Fini Sour Filled Watermelon Bricks!  I’ve always been a lover of sour candies, and these really hit the spot.  In fact, I’ve eaten half the jar while typing up this review.  I just couldn’t put them down!

The Candy Club Subscription Box is a wonderful gift for any occasion.  Who hates candy, right?! With their range of plan options, you are sure to find the option that fits your needs very quickly.

Here are a few of the great deals Candy Club is offering right now.  Be sure to use the links below so that the deal can be applied to your order:

Click here: 50% off Plus Free Shipping on the World’s Best Candy!!

Click here: $10 off Your First Order

How to Write a Stellar About Me Page for Your Blog

How to Write a Stellar About Me Page for Your Blog

This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

One of the most viewed pages on your blog will be your “About Me” page.  As your following and readership grows, so will the number of people who want to know the super-cool mastermind behind the blog!  It’s very important as a blogger to engage your readers and help them truly care about you.  If they don’t care about you, they won’t care about what you have to say or offer.

Your “About Me” page is the most important page on your blog. Not only does it do the job of introducing you to the world, but it is key in providing vital information about what you can offer to your readers and why they should stay around and click (and hopefully subscribe!).  Get your “About Me” page wrong, and you can be sure to drive AWAY traffic to other sites instead of retaining that traffic.

Today’s post is all about setting your “About Me” page up for success. While I don’t believe it will ever get up to a perfectionist level, there are things that can be done to it to make it ASTONISHING and WONDERFUL!  So, let’s talk about what you should and should not include on your “About Me” page.  While there is no one-size-meets-all formula to creating a stellar “About Me” page, there is information that you should include without a doubt.

Your Bio

Who are you? How did you get to where you are today? Share your goals and values.  Let your readers see the real you. Being yourself is key to gaining your readers’ trust and confidence that by reading what you have to say, they can find value.

Talk about the parts of you that make you a unique blogger. You don’t have to give a chronological explanation of everything you’ve gone through in your life, but do include those skills, experiences, and successes that make you an expert in your niche.

Include a Photo

While you may already have your photo in a sidebar, you should also include another photo on your “About Me” page. By all means, do NOT include a photo that would embarrass you, your family, or your readers. Make sure you are dressed professionally/appropriately for your blog’s niche. If you’re offering professional services, don’t show up in shorts and a t-shirt. Wear a suit.  Get the point?

Describe your blog content

So now that we know about YOU as an individual, we want to know what your blog is about, and why we should spend our valuable time on YOUR page vs the millions of other pages out there. Draw us in to what makes your content special, valuable, and time-worthy. If you haven’t figured it out yet, this page needs to SHINE!

Show how you can help your readers

Your readers may have landed on your site because they did a search for specific information. This is your opportunity to clearly explain what you can do for them to help them meet their needs.  As a parenting blogger, I try to provide valuable information to new parents or those who are seeking new ways of doing things. By providing new perspectives and ideas, we can draw our readers in for wanting more. Don’t just recycle information most people have heard before. Create new, exhilarating content that your readers will remember, love, and share with others!

Provide examples of how you have helped others

Above we talked about the importance of telling your readers how you can help them. Now’s your chance to talk about your success stories! Do you have a portfolio or project? Share it! Provide specific examples, numbers, data, and photos. This lets your readers see tangible results they can expect from you as well.  Walk the walk if you are going to talk the talk!

Your contact information

This may seem dumb and/or obvious, but don’t forget to include the best ways to contact you for more information. I’m not saying you have to include every single social media account URL.  The best way to provide contact information is through a separate “Contact Me” link. Check out my contact page as an example.  I have a simple contact form as well as my social media account links.

Recent/Popular Posts

Never miss an opportunity to show off your best work. Create a list (3-5) linking to your highest performing posts. Show your readers what they have to look forward to by subscribing to your blog.

Now what?

You’ve followed my suggestions above and put together a stellar “About Me” page. Now what? Continue to update it. Don’t let it sit unedited. Update your information as you grow as a writer, and as your readers’ needs change. Refresh the popular/recent post links and look for opportunities to update your photo.

Share with me!

What’s on YOURAbout Me” page?  Do you have more ideas for a stellar “About Me” page? Share in the comments below!

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links
Save 10-20% on select Majestic Cool Base and Flex Base jerseys + Free Shipping on Orders over $50 at MLBShop.com through 3/17

Have you ever wondered how all of these other bloggers are becoming so successful with affiliate marketing? If so, this is the post for you. Affiliate marketing can seem so overwhelming at times, but it doesn’t have to be.  I’ve put together a detailed guide on how to sign up with ShareASale so that you too can be on your way to success.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

To keep it simple, affiliate marketing is when bloggers like you or me sign up to promote a merchant’s products and services in exchange for a commission.  When I place a merchant’s links within my blog post (or use banner ads), I get commission when a reader clicks on the link and that click leads to a purchase.

There are all kinds of merchants available for promotion. The good thing is that there are so many merchants that we have the ability to only sign up for programs that interest us.  As a daddy blogger, I look for merchants that sell products related to my niche.  I never promote or recommend products I don’t believe in or use.

Why Would I Want To Spend Time On This?

Affiliate marketing allows bloggers and site owners to earn income based on their sales performance with their merchants. While starting off can be a little slow before you start seeing income roll in, it’s a great method to earn extra passive income.

I won’t lie to you today about the work needed to succeed in affiliate marketing. It takes a lot of time to craft blog posts in such a way to make your readers not feel like you are just trying to sell them something. Trust me, the first time they feel that way, it’ll be the last time they visit your site.

Hopefully, you started blogging because you are passionate about something. You want to share that passion with others. From time to time, you have products or services to recommend your readers that will be a value for them.  This is where affiliate marketing is at its best. By blending in the links with your blog posts, you can make your readers feel like you are truly offering a product or service to them that will better their lives.

Throwing up banner ads like there is no tomorrow, or putting a million affiliate links all over a blog post may eventually lead to sales, but it won’t lead to reader loyalty. Be smart about when and where you place the links.

I didn’t receive my first commission until November of 2016.  I spent months perfecting the best ways to introduce those products to my readers. I will say that persistence pays off with affiliate marketing – just like anything else in life.

How Do I Join An Affiliate Marketing Program?

Joining affiliate marketing programs is easy.  The first step is to choose which affiliate marketing site you want to use. You don’t have to narrow it down to just one, but for the purpose of this post, I’m going to talk about ShareASale’s Affiliate Marketing Program (see my recent review of ShareASale).  

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Once you have signed up to be an affiliate with ShareASale (join here using my referral link), you can select from thousands of merchants and apply with the click of a button. Most of the merchants manually review applications and usually respond within a few days. Some of them automatically approve you. Aside from a few occasions, you should receive approval for every program for which you apply. Don’t be surprised, or discouraged, though, if you do get declined from a program. Many programs have minimum guidelines you have to meet for them to accept you, but these are few and far between.

In ShareASale, click on the Merchants tab and then Search For Merchants

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

The Merchant Search will allow you to search for merchants based on popularity, age, sales volume, etc.  You can either type in a keyword into the search field, or click on any of the links.  I like to look at the Top 100 PowerRank on occasion and see if any of those high performers fit my blog’s niche.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

I performed a search for Major League Baseball because opening day is a few weeks away and I wanted to see if there were any affiliate programs with great deals on merchandise to coincide with opening day.  When I hit search, I get a list of 41 affiliate programs associated with Major League Baseball.  The list tells me if the merchant is in the Top 100 PowerRank, when they were activated on ShareASale, their merchant ID, commission structure, and more details about the program.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

I’m interested in joining MLBShop.com’s affiliate program, so I clicked on the link to the left that takes me to their program’s affiliate application.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

A pop-up box will appear with the merchant’s affiliate program agreement. READ THIS!  It is important information you will need to know in order to remain an active affiliate for this merchant’s program.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Once you’ve read the program agreement, you will need to click the radio button that confirms you agree to the merchant’s agreement and then hit Join This Program. This particular merchant also requires that I agree to release my email and phone number as a part of the program application.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Once you have submitted your information, you will get another pop-up that tells you your current approval status.  Most of the time, it will say Pending.  If an affiliate automatically approves you, it’ll say Approved in green.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Once a merchant has approved you as an affiliate, you get access to promotional tools you can use to promote the merchant’s products in your blog posts, social media, or email campaigns. Promotional tools include banners, coupons, or promo codes. Adding links is as easy as copying the special tracking URL assigned to you and pasting them into your blog post.

Let’s take a look at one of my existing merchants that I promote – NFLShop.com.  I really love this particular merchant’s program because they almost always have great deals and coupons to offer readers.

Once I’ve opened up the program from my dashboard, I see several tabs across the top of the page – Text Links, Banners, Deals/Coupons, Datafeed Products, Product Showcase, Make-A-Page, and Create Custom Link.  Not all merchants will have the same tabs at the top.  It all depends on what they have chosen to offer to their affiliates.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Text links

This is the tab the site defaults to when you open up the merchant in your dashboard. It is just what it says. As you can see, I get the text link’s individual ID, the description of the text link, its category, a preview of what the link will say, when it was modified, and a link to get the html code.As I look through the list, I try to find a link that fits within the blog post I’m writing. For this example, let’s say I am writing a post about Eddie Lacy. He’s been in the news lately so I want to talk about it with my readers.  I see that NFLShop.com has a 2017 NFL Free Agent Class Seattle Seahawks Nike Game Jersey.  You can either do what I just did – add the link to custom text, or use the html link and plug it into your html editor in your blogging platform (for me, that’s WordPress) to have the link automatically show up.  You can do it either way. I love this because it allows me to be creative in how I promote this product to my readers.

The custom link that I copied and pasted as a hyperlink inside my custom text is the link that will record any clicks, and more importantly, sales, that have been generated by readers who have clicked them. This is why it’s very important you copy and paste EXACTLY how they appear on the merchant’s site. You don’t want to lose any potential sales!  Here’s what the actual hyperlink looks like when you copy it from the merchant’s page. Don’t ever paste this link by itself in a blog post. It looks unprofessional.  Always, always, always embed the URL inside custom text!

http://www.shareasale.com/r.cfm?B=983219&U=1350177&M=52555&urllink=

When you click on Get HTML Code, you’ll open up both links. If you are familiar with HTML code (you really don’t need to know much more about it other than how to copy and paste it into WordPress), choose the first code in the top box.  Note: If you want to add your ShareASale hyperlink to custom text, this is NOT the code to use for that. The key to knowing whether or not it’s a hyperlink is to look to see if there is http:// in front of it.  Notice how the first code starts with “<a href=.”  This will let you know that it’s html code and you should copy and paste it into the html editor of your blogging platform.  I did NOT choose this option. I chose the 2nd option, which is the hyperlink version I showed you above.

How to Skyrocket Passive Income Through Affiliate Marketing

Banners

Banners are good visuals to use in addition to text links. I like to put some of my affiliate banners in my blog’s sidebar, and if a banner corresponds to a blog post I’ve written, I’ll stick a banner either at the top, middle, or bottom of my post to draw my readers’ eyes to it.  Banners work the same way as text links, in that you have to copy and paste the code into your html editor to get them to appear on your site. NFLShop.com has 302 banners available for me to choose from. Left-click on the banner that you want and it’ll take you to the same code as before. So easy!

Deals/Coupons

Some merchants offer deals/coupons to their customers, while others do not. As we can see from our tabs, there are 8 current deals/coupons offered by NFLShop.com.  When we click on this tab, it takes you to the detail list. It’s important, above all, to look at the start and end times of the coupon.  We definitely do not want to offer our readers a coupon that has expired!  We see that this merchant has some that never end, and some that have an expiration date. These links work almost exactly like our text and banner links work.  I like to offer these coupons to my social media followers a lot of times, so I’ll customize my message about the coupon and then provide them with the tracking link they click on to get the deal.  You can also use custom text inside your blog posts and embed the tracking link as a hyperlink behind the text.  Again, make sure you copy and paste the code exactly as it appears.

Datafeed Products

Whoa! There are 86,992 data feed products for NFLShop.com. What in the world is this? And do you need to be concerned with it?  Data feeds are files provided by your merchant to help you better promote and sell their products.  (IMPORTANT!).  We all want our content to show up at the top of search engine results, right?  Well, data feeds are there for that purpose. Data feed files are changed over into individual products which contain descriptions about those products, links for the images, visitor links, pricing, etc.  What does this mean for you and me?  We will take this information and build individual web pages for these products, or even combine them all into each page.  We want to use data feed products if they are available because they will help give our site more search engine exposure.

Product Showcase

The next tab over is the Product Showcase tab. Product Showcases are dynamic creative that show product results for a search term or category. Whenever a search is performed, it provides real-time results and will differ each time the creative is viewed. ShareASale allows you to create a showcase either for a single merchant, a group of merchants, or for all of your merchants.  I haven’t really played around with this feature yet, as I almost always use the links within my blog post to refer readers to products that may interest them. But, this feature is there, and may be worth checking out.

Make-A-Page

Make-A-Page is a feature that allows you the ability to easily find relevant products and create pages for them. You can either search by keyword, or select from the category list.

Create Custom Link

If you want to create a custom link for a product, ShareASale gives you a tool that allows you to do just that. Again, I just use the URLs provided in the text/banner tabs, but if you want to create your own you can do that as well with this feature

Tracking Your Activity

Now that we have a good idea of some of the tools merchants can provide you to promote their products, how do we know when someone has clicked on one of our links?  And, how do we know if that click led to a sale?

ShareASale’s Reports tab at the top left corner of your dashboard is the place to go to get your individualized stats. Let’s take a look at what it has to offer.

If I hover my mouse over Reports, it’ll give me a lot of options to choose from:

Activity details

This report tells you your sales history.  You can filter down to a certain time period, or view all transactions.  You can also drill down to a specific merchant, transactions, paid date, etc.  I like this page because it tells me when a link or banner was clicked, what the total sale amount was, and what my commission was.

Merchant Timespan

If I want to see my commission totals for a specific merchant, or all merchants, within a specific time frame, I can do that with this report.

Today At A Glance

I check this report daily, sometimes hourly, if I’ve pushed posts out with affiliate links recently.  It tells me if there have been any clicks on those links, who the merchant was, my status with the merchant (approved), any commission that I may have earned from that click, unique and raw hits, sales, manual credits, conversions, reversals, and earnings per click.

Traffic Report

This report is useful if I want to see my traffic levels for my merchants. Again, I can filter down to a time frame, individual or all merchants, and sort by several categories. I usually sort by Unique Hits, then high to low. This tells me which of my merchants get the most traffic, which is useful because I can focus on them more to try to drive in more sales.

Download CSV

If you want to download your transactions to a .csv file, you can do that with this feature.

Payment Summary

Shows any recent payments that ShareASale has made to you.  In your account settings, you have the option to set a payment trigger. I chose $50. Whenever my commissions reach at least $50, it’ll automatically perform an ACH Direct Deposit to my bank account.  Go to your account settings to adjust the trigger level and method of deposit.

Merchant Status

I love this report because it gives you a run-down of your merchant status.  This report gives me the option to quit a program, tells me what status I’m in (Approved, Declined, etc), my commission totals, hits totals, sales totals, conversions, EPCs, merchant info, links to contact that merchant, and a link that takes me to get links or banners for that merchant.

More…

I won’t go into detail about the More section, but it does have additional reports you can run to help you with your affiliate marketing.

How to Make the Most Out of ShareASale

It’s easy to drop in a few links, promote links through social media, and add a few banner ads to your site, but there’s a lot more to it than this. Don’t sell yourself short by promoting products you don’t believe in just to make a few bucks. Focus on promoting only those products you use.

Be creative!  Don’t be afraid to try new promotional methods. For example, I will be making a video tutorial of this blog post in the near future.  I can add these links to YouTube to drive traffic to my merchants.

The amount of income is only limited to the amount of time and effort you set aside for it. It may seem like a long shot to hit in the thousands per month, but it can be done.

FTC Requirement: Disclosing Affiliate Links

Before you hit the publish button on that fancy new blog post with shiny affiliate links, you have to clearly disclose that there are affiliate links on your blog.  Put your affiliate disclosure at the top of your blog post before the first affiliate link appears. If you are sharing your affiliate links on social media, such as Facebook or Twitter, you can disclose them by stating #ad or #aff. I’ve also seen bloggers write “Disclosure: Affiliate links.”  As long as you clearly disclose the presence of affiliate links, you’ll be compliant with the FTC.

Here is how I disclose affiliate links on my blog:

This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links

Some Amazing Programs You Need To Join

I’m very happy to share with you some of the programs I’ve joined and their commission structure. Please note that merchants change their commission structure on occasion, so be sure to review each merchant’s full profile on ShareASale. ShareASale is also very good about emailing you about commission changes as well.

Blurb – Make your own professional-quality books, magazines, or eBooks. They offer 15% commission per sale and a 120 Day Tracking Cookie.

Book Outlet – Book Outlet has been in business for over 10 years selling books all over the world.  Books are offered at 50-90% off the list price. Book Outlet offers 10% commission, a 45-day cookie, seasonal and monthly promotions, performance incentives, full data feed, and dedicated program management

Candy ClubCandy Club is one of my newer merchants, but offers a monthly subscription service to deliver the freshest candies right to your door. They offer $20.50 commission on all 1, 6 and 12 month subscription sales, $30.00 commission on all 6 and 12 month prepaid subscription sales, one free Candy Club package to review on your blog/site upon request, and a bonus commission structure based on your performance.

Canva Press – Provides canvas prints, photo paper prints, and wall murals customized for each customer. They offer commissions between 10-14%,  a 30 day tracking cookie, discount and dollar off coupons, an auto-deposit feature, and dedicated program management.

Corner Stork Baby Gifts – Affordably-priced baby gift company founded by moms from Atlanta who seem to get invited to a baby shower or birthday party every week. Corner Stork offers the best of bath toys to room decor, personalized gifts to clothing, etc. They also price-match! The offer sales commissions of 10%.

CellSavers – CellSavers is a convenient device repair service.  Their technicians can meet you at your preferred location and time to repair damaged cell phones.  All repairs come with a lifetime warranty and high rated customer service. See my earlier blog post about CellSavers. CellSavers offers a $10.00 commission per lead, a 15 day cookie, $10 affiliate referrals, award-winning affiliate marketing management service, and monthly newsletters with updates on promotions, contests and sales opportunities.

Cricut – Cricut.com offers Cricut® machines, 50,000+ images to cut, and project supplies ranging from cardstock to iron-on film—plus inspiration, ideas, and a creative community!  The Cricut Explore™ machine lets anyone create amazing DIY projects. With world-leading technology, we make it easy for novices and professionals alike to make something they can feel proud of. Cricut offers a 12% base commission and 15% commission on orders $100+, a 45 day cookie, $10 affiliate referrals, award-winning affiliate management team from Acceleration Partners, and weekly newsletters with promotions, incentives, and the latest offers designed to help affiliates earn higher commissions.

Dancewear Solutions – Dancewear Solutions offers a large selection of the latest dancewear, dance shoes, leotards, dance shorts, tights and dance accessories. They carry most of the major dance brands such as Balera, Bloch, Capezio, Danskin, Sansha, Urban Groove and more. Dancewear Solutions offers a 6% commission rate and their average sale is $70.

Gymboree, Crazy 8, Janie and Jack – Gymboree’s clothing and accessories are created to celebrate kids being kids in unique, head-to-toe looks. Gymboree clothing is designed with colorful, high-quality fabrics and detailed touches throughout. Crazy 8 offers fashionable outfits at a great value for girls and boys, sizes 3M to 14. Janie and Jack offers classic children’s clothing rich in fabric, design and detail for girls and boys up to size 12 online. Heirloom-quality looks feature finely-crafted details such as hand-embroidery, hand-smocking and special prints. They offer 8% commission, a 30 day cookie, product datafeeds for both Gymboree and Crazy 8 that are both updated daily, and regular newsletters with updates on promotions, contests, and sales opportunities

Little Passports – Little Passports delivers a travel adventure right to your door! Choose from the Early Explorers (ages 3-5), the World Edition (ages 6-10), or the USA Edition (ages 7-12). Each subscription will have your child rushing to the mailbox, waiting for packages highlighting a new global destination or US state. They’ll receive letters, souvenirs, pop-out models, activities, stickers and more. Inspire a life-long interest in travel, language and world cultures with Little Passports! Little Passports offers $15 PER SALE commission rate on all monthly payment and 12 month plans. as well as $8 PER SALE commission rate on all 3 month and 6 month plans, a 90 day cookie for conversion tracking, regular newsletters with promotions, incentives and content, and a dedicated affiliate team.

NFLShop.com – NFLShop.com is the official online store of the National Football League and offers the biggest selection of officially licensed NFL apparel and merchandise online. They offer up commissions of up to 6% of sales, a 7 day cookie, 50,000+ product datafeed, top name brand products including Nike, New Era, Mitchell & Ness Cutter and Buck and more + authentic collectibles from Fanatics Authentic, great tools for bloggers and social media affiliates, great selection of text links and banner ads as well as “build your own” capability using Product Showcases, Make A Page and Custom Link builder, and dedicated management by Wade Tonkin.

 

How to Revitalize Old Blog Posts

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive compensation for any items you purchase. Read my full disclosure here.

Are you struggling to come up with new, high-quality content?  Do you have writer’s block? Guess what?  You already have content on your blog just begging for your attention.  Today’s post is all about showing some love to our old blog posts by revitalizing them.

I don’t know about you, but old posts seem to still get some hits on my blog. That got me to thinking – what if that content is outdated?  What if my writing wasn’t that good?  What can I do to improve them?  I think it’s easy for us as bloggers to forget about our old blog posts because we want to continue to pump out new content. One forgotten blogging strategy is to keep content updated.

Reasons why you should start doing this TODAY:

You’ve learned new things

I’ve been blogging since 2015, and I’m pretty sure that I knew how to write well back then, but that’s about all I could do.  I didn’t understand how to include keywords for SEO, proper placement of affiliate links, or including links to other content to keep readers on my site much longer than a few seconds.  I can definitely tell you it’s frustrating to spend a lot of time perfecting a blog post to not get many views or shares.

The good thing about blogging is this:  The more you do it, the better you get at it. I’m sure I have plenty of old posts that were good ideas, but were terribly written. It’s time to update them!  And, not only will I update these posts because I care about the content on my blog, but I will also share them again.  Who knows, maybe they will go viral! Learning as you go is good for new posts, but this education can definitely apply to the oldies on your site as well!

You have more followers

We all probably don’t have the same number of followers we did 2 years ago – at least I hope not! Hopefully, your following has continued to grow.  If it’s not, then you aren’t really succeeding as a blogger.

New followers usually read your most recent content, and probably don’t have your site’s archives memorized like you do. So, you need to continue to direct them to these older posts by linking within newer posts and by setting up a sharing schedule on social media (I use Hootsuite). Chances are, your original followers fell head over heels for your old stuff – so, let your new followers experience the same thing!

You’ve experienced more

If you started blogging 5 years ago, chances are you’ve traveled to new places, met new people, learned new things, and made more memories. If you wrote a post about traveling to London years ago and you went again a few weeks ago, why not update the original post to include the new experiences you learned from your most recent trip?  By doing this, you are showing your followers not only do you care about your older content, but you continue to travel and learn new things.

When you experience more, you have more to say. Find opportunities with your old blog posts to update the information you originally shared and add new content that your readers are sure to love!

Keep your readers engaged

Updating old blog posts brings back memories of the first time a reader reads a memorable post. If you bring up new perspectives, ideas, links, and suggestions, you’ll keep your readers interested in what you have to say next.  Revitalizing old blog posts is a great way to put a new spin on an old topic to draw readers back in to your site.  It doesn’t matter how old the post is – 100 years or 100 days – do it to all of them!

Ready to get started?  Here’s how to do it!

Make a list of all the posts you want to update

The first place to start is by scouring your blog for those posts that you want to update. This may take a few hours up to a few days, even weeks, but is worth it!  It all depends on how many posts you have made, and how many are worthy to be updated.

Do you have posts that fit within the current season? For example, if I wrote a piece about Black Friday, which I did, chances are I’ll get more shares if I update it right before the holidays start.

Focus on posts with high views

If you use WordPress like I do, you have a nifty feature that tells you exactly which posts have had the highest number of views. Focus on these!  The reason they got high views is because you gave your readers something they were interested in.

One of my most-viewed blog posts is 100 Blog Post Ideas. Chances are, I can update this post to 500 Blog Post Ideas!  Surely I’ve come up with more interesting ideas since I originally wrote this post. It’s a useful post for bloggers to read to PROVIDE VALUE to them. Updating this post only makes sense!

Clean up the post

Go back through your post – word for word.  You are looking for grammar errors and sentence structure. Shorten paragraphs that exceed five sentences and eliminate repetitive phrases. I like to use the newer version of Microsoft Word for this. It searches for repetitive phrases and suggests a better way to say them.  It also keys you in on those phrases and teaches you to modify your craft. I tend to say “all of” a lot.  I would have never picked up on that had I not closely monitored my grammar and sentence structure.

Verify links still work

Chances are you probably have a few broken links within your blog. Broken links are a good way to prevent traffic from staying on your site. If your readers don’t find what they are looking for, or the content is missing, they’ll move on to the next site. Don’t be that victim!

I recommend a site called: Brokenlinkcheck.com to review all of your links.  It may scare you to do this, but YOU NEED TO KNOW!  Fix these links immediately, or delete them!  I ran my site through it today and I had 143 broken links!  I couldn’t believe it, but now I have a list to go through to clean them up!

Use Yoast SEO

I’ve used Yoast ever since I started blogging.  Yoast SEO is a WordPress plugin that helps you optimize every aspect of your posts to position it to be as SEO-friendly as possible.  It’s a free plugin (with optional premium features).  If you aren’t using it today, why not?  Take every advantage to update old posts to fit the mold of the rest of your site.

Update the content

Did you write a recipe post 5 years ago?  Did you modify it a month ago to make it better?  Update the original post with the new content and indicate at the top of your post the date that you updated it. Show your readers you are continually trying to improve what you’ve already written. There’s no better way than to update the content to match your new knowledge.

Recreate the post in a different medium

Most of us write posts only as a regular post seen on our blog, but how many times have we thought about creating it again in a different medium? What do I mean by this? Take my post, How to Make A Spectacular Media Kit. It’s a GREAT candidate to convert to PowerPoint!  Did you know that you can move your blog posts into a PowerPoint format and share on SlideShare?

Not only can you recreate your posts into PowerPoint, but you can also make one giant eBook of all of your blog posts.  I’m doing that right now with all of the posts I’ve written about blogging. Creating an eBook is a fantastic way to share your content as well as offer an incentive for readers to sign up for your mailing list.

Another medium many bloggers forget about is infographics.  Does your post contain a lot of stats or steps?  Create a free infographic to go along with the original post.

Remove bad posts

As much as we would hate to admit it, we have all probably created posts in the past that we hate. Why leave them on the site?  If you can’t figure out a way to revitalize and repurpose them, it’s time to hit the delete button.  My suggestion is to copy/paste the post into Word in case you want to revisit the post later down the road.  If you are in WordPress, you can always revert the post back to a draft status.

Optimize images for Pinterest

Make sure that every image on your site is optimized for Pinterest. Remove images of low quality.  Pin these images to the many group boards you have joined (I hope you have!  Pinterest is awesome for traffic!)  Research shows images with red colors do better than any other color.  I really don’t know why (maybe this is a good topic for a future post!).

I love Pinterest because not only does it provide valuable content to me personally, but it’s such a great platform for sharing blog posts.  I have created my own Pinterest Board for all of my blog posts. It’s a great way to share content even more.

Link to your other posts

There’s no better way to keep readers interested and engaged on your blog than to link to your other posts. Chances are, you’ve written similar or relevant posts that would be perfect links in your old content.  I’ve linked to my older content in this very post.  Did you notice?

Increase word count

It has been proven that search engines love to find web pages that are rich in detail. If you have any posts that are less than 1,000 words, consider reworking those posts to increase the word count. While it may not be possible in all situations, making sure the word count works in your favor is a great way to keep the post rising up in the search results.

Share it again

As I mentioned earlier in this post, I use Hootsuite to auto-schedule my already-published posts. Make sure you are doing this regularly.  Don’t let the fact that your posts are years old detract you from sharing them again.  If readers found them useful back then, and you’ve followed my steps in this post, the age really won’t matter.  I focus on the major social media networks – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram.  Another good idea is to write a new list post sharing the newly updated posts with your readers.

Ask your readers for feedback

What better way to find posts that need updated than to survey your readers?  Share a post to your email list and invite feedback on how the post can be improved? Your readers know what they are looking for, so use that to your advantage. Make it clear that you welcome positive or negative feedback.  Oh, and make sure you SHARE the updated post and give credit to the readers that provided the suggestions!

Insert affiliate links

By now, I hope you have joined some of the great affiliate programs out there to help you earn extra income as a blogger.  Most bloggers just focus on the new posts and find ways to insert affiliate links whenever appropriate.  You would be surprised how many of your old posts can give you that very same opportunity.  Scour your old blog posts and find ways to incorporate the affiliate links.

If you aren’t participating in affiliate marketing today, why not?  I highly recommend ShareASale. I actually wrote a recent review of ShareASale so check it out today if you are interested in joining. Joining is FREE and there are thousands of merchants to choose from when deciding which brands to promote.

Be careful which merchants you choose to work with if you do go the route of affiliate programs. Some of them have very strict rules about how they want you to promote their products.

Lather, rinse, repeat

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post (and other posts on my blog for that matter!). No matter how old your blog is, never stop updating your content. It’s a process that’ll continue for the life of your blog. Trust me, you will reap the benefits of a well-maintained site.

It’s time for ME to live up to the advice I’ve given you today to go update my old posts. Stay tuned for a grand list of everything I updated.  I look forward to seeing what YOU have done in the past with your old posts. Share in the comments!

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Quick, affordable &amp; certified cell phone repair service at your door. Schedule now!
It’s no question that iPhones are very popular phones.  In fact, I have been an iPhone user for years. While these phones are extremely well-manufactured pieces of technology, they are prone to screen cracks and faulty headphone plugs. Even if you have the extended coverage through your cellular service provider, repair costs for these phones can easily skyrocket. I’ve heard so many horror stories about how expensive it is to repair the screen, or how time-consuming it is just to get it in to the service tech’s hands.

My oldest son is about to get his first phone.  While he is excited about it, I have my worries about how long the phone will actually stay in its original condition. If past behavior continues, I can expect him to handle the phone like it’s a play toy. I’ve seen other electronic gadgets he’s had in the past get destroyed or damaged. While all of the protective cases and screen covers can only do so much, I know that damage is still inevitable with a phone. I’ve had to replace my iPhone before, and the process was expensive. $99 deductible? No thanks…

I am excited to announce that I have partnered with CellSavers. This means I’ll be able to pass on their deals and specials to all of you!  CellSavers can help you repair that pesky broken screen or faulty headphone plug.  One of the great things about CellSavers is that they can meet you at your desired location and time to make the necessary repairs.  How cool is that?  So no going to the Apple Store, no shipping your phone off for weeks, no expensive deductibles to replace the damaged phone!  They come to you!  How cool is that? I wish they had been around sooner!

Quick, affordable & certified cell phone repair service at your door from CellSavers! Schedule your repair now!

Here’s an idea of all the issues CellSavers’ techs can fix:

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CellSavers makes it quick and easy! In just 4 simple steps they can get their device up and running!

  1. Tell CellSavers which device needs repair.
  2. Describe the issue.
  3. Tell CellSavers where to meet you.
  4. Done! CellSavers technicians will meet you anywhere in an average of 60 minutes!

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Best Nest Wellness Healthy Mama Giveaway

Best Nest Wellness Healthy Mama Giveaway

I’m partnering with Best Nest Wellness in hosting a fantastic giveaway for moms worth over $1200. The prizes include products from their company as wells as many others. The grand prize winner could be you! The contest will open on March 15 and the drawing will be held on April 1.

About Best Nest Wellness

Founded by a doctor mom, Best Nest Wellness aims to bring more delight to your every day by creating something that’s better for all families, everywhere. Their products are based on the latest medical advancements coupled with the wisdom of nature.

They believe that every single person on this planet – regardless of sex, race, orientation, economic status, or ability – is pure potential.  As part of their commitment to that belief, they are proud to give a portion of their proceeds to Orion’s Friends, a group of non-profit organizations dedicated to helping people with Down Syndrome.

Best Nest Wellness makes high-quality multivitamins and other supplements that are powerful and pure – all products contain both methylfolate and methylcobalamin. 

Due to an overwhelming response from customers (they have over 1000+ great reviews on Amazon), they were back ordered for months after they launched! They continue to have their best sellers in high demand.

How to enter the giveaway:

Click the image below to go to the entry form