5 Content Tips for Fresh Start in 2020

Last week, we highlighted tips for refreshing your site design. Here are five more ways, focused on your site’s text, to give your online home a makeover.

Revisit your site title and tagline

There are interesting stories behind people’s site titles. Your own site name may be inspired by a favorite quote, a clever play on words, or simply your name.

Your site title is not your site’s URL or web address. You can tweak it as often as you want — it’s separate from your domain name, which, on the other hand, cannot be changed.

It may not be appropriate for you to change your site title — if it’s the name of your business, for example — but if you have a personal site, you have more flexibility. Your site title should reflect you and your journey, or your brand and its mission, and if either have evolved, it may make sense to update it.

Also, if your site’s content has changed over the years, be sure your tagline is up to date. Your tagline is a phrase that describes what your site is about, and is often displayed underneath your site title in the header area (but might be placed elsewhere depending on your current theme). Our pro tip? Keep it short and snappy.

Update your site title and tagline in My Site → Settings → General → Site Profile.

Relabel and reorganize your menu tabs

A bit of digital housekeeping goes a long way. One way to quickly freshen up your site is to update your menu. Be sure your menu tabs reflect the content that’s most important to you: if you want people to visit your About, Contact, and Store pages, make sure they’re visible at all times, rather than nested in a drop-down menu. And if you have outdated pages, update them or hide them from your menu.

Get creative and rename common menu items. If you brew beer, replace “Bio” with “The Brewer Behind the Blog.” Or if you have a thru-hiking journal, swap “Contact Me” with “Send Me a Package.” Update your menu labels with terms or phrases related to what you post about.

Manage your menu in My Site → Customize → Menus, click the down-facing arrows, and look for the Navigation Label fields.

Tidy up your categories

Now’s the time to clean up your categories. Do you have posts labeled with Uncategorized? By default, every post you write is added to this built-in category. But you can edit this category name to something else, as well as add new categories or manage existing ones.

Find your categories in My Site → Settings → Writing → Categories, then click on the three dots next to Uncategorized to rename it. Manage your other categories here, too, which then makes it easier to create category pages to add to your freshly updated menu.

Audit your sidebar and footer

January is the perfect time to do a sweep of your sidebar and footer areas for any cobwebs. Are there dead links to blogs that no longer exist? Social media icons to services you no longer use? A broken Instagram feed of your previous username?

Delete outdated widgets. Update your widget titles. Add a new text or custom HTML widget with a note for 2020 that welcomes new readers, or an abridged, front-page version of your About page.

Manage all of your widgets in My Site → Customize → Widgets.

Review all of your pages

Your readers and customers expect all of your site content to be up-to-date, so audit existing pages and make edits as necessary. Get inspired by these About pages, then revisit and refine your own.

Or add new pages that promote your best work. Take a peek at your stats, especially your most popular posts and pages, and use the data to create a Best Of page. (Alternatively, compile a list of personal favorites — the content doesn’t have to be the most-clicked!) Also consider a Press or Awards page and showcase work that’s been highlighted in other publications or blogs.

Manage your site’s pages in My Site → Site Pages.

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January 20, 2020Design, Inspiration, Writing, , , ,