It's funny to think that blog organizing wasn't even a thing a few years ago.
But just like anything else, when you load it up with too much information it can start to get cluttered.
So, whether you are a new blogger or have been at it for awhile, it is important to understand how to organize your blog.
When you set up your blog structure, you need to make it friendly for both your real readers and the search engines.
Here are some blog organizing tips that you can follow.
How to Organize Your Blog - Understanding the Basics
When your blog content starts getting disorganized, it is really tempting to start creating categories to compartmentalize the different topics that you write about.
Before you know know, you end up with tons of categories - many that only have a handful of posts or categories that are duplicates of other categories.
This can be confusing to you, your readers, and the search engines.
There are many ways to organize your blog, but I like to start with an understanding of how the search engines see a website.
A search engine is essentially a computer that wants an easy to follow structure.
Related Article: 8 Free Blog Resources You Can Download Right Now
Your Homepage Carries the Most Weight
For search engines, your homepage carries the most weight.
When a search engine spider lands on your homepage, it starts to crawl your site.
This means that it starts to read what it sees. As it lands on links, it follows those links to other pages on your site. And from those pages, it continues on.
This is why you want to link to your most important pages from your homepage.
You also want to link to your main categories from your homepage. For this purpose categories can be your actual category pages or hub type pages that you created that will then link to subpages, subcategories or posts in that category.
Think of it like a pyramid with your homepage at the top. You can visually see this structure if you download the free Blog Structure Blueprint.
Connect all Your Posts
Every single one of your posts should connect into this structure somewhere.
The idea is that a search engine spider should be able to find all your posts by following the links starting on your homepage.
Remember that the links on your homepage don't all have to be to category pages. You can create what I refer to as hub pages - which is basically a summary page that links to a bunch of posts around a single topic.
You can link to this hub page from your sidebar or footer as well.
Related Article: Search Engine Optimization Basics - How Does SEO work?
Pick Your Main Categories
Now that you understand how the search engines crawl your site, you can start to create your top level categories.
I like to put these categories in my menu bar, so that they are easy to navigate (for both people and search engines).
The links actually go directly to my category pages or to a hub page.
Whereas my Get Organized menu item links directly to a category page.
These main categories should help your reader navigate to the different topics you blog about on a high level.
Limit Your Sub-Categories
Sub-categories are usually where bloggers get tripped up.
Identify a handful of subcategories for each of your main blog categories.
Think of these subcategories as a collection of posts that you might want to link to in a future post or refer to in a social share.
This article on the Elegant Themes blog has a nice discussion of WordPress categories and subcategories.
The next level within your categories, and thus your first line of subcategories, will be aimed at a niche. For instance, if your parent category is ‘USA’ and your first subcategory is ‘New York’, the market you’re trying to reach will immediately become much smaller.
Ninja Tip: Think Like A Marketer
Typically when we set up categories and subcategories for our blog we tend to think like an end user.
I divided my Recipes category up based on this principle. And it works for this category.
But, if your goal is to make money blogging, then you need to think like a marketer when it comes to how to organize your blog.
What is your end goal? What do you want your reader to do?
In the example from the Elegant Themes blog - they are probably trying to market to a group of people that want to visit New York City as well as other locations.
As the reader drills down into the content, they start with United States and end up on a New York category. All the articles in the New York category are likely aimed at selling products and services that appeal to tourists in NYC.
... whether you are a new blogger or have been at it for awhile, it is important to understand how to organize your blog.
Watch Out For This
When you change your categories and subcategories in WordPress, it does have a ripple effect.
Essentially, you will be changing the permalinks for your category pages which can affect your search rankings.
You may want to look into creating redirects from your old category pages using the Yoast SEO plugin, or talk to a WordPress expert to help you.
Did You Organize Your Blog Recently?
Share your tips in the comments below.
If you are looking for help on how to organize your blog - download the free Blog Structure Blueprint - it is a huge help.
And remember, stick to a few categories and subcategories. Make sure to also have a plan before you start making changes.
Finally, think like a marketer to drive your readers deeper into your own sales funnel.
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