As per my last entry, thumb I decided to take a step back from posting content to work on building up a bank of posts in an effort to make posts more consistent. Since content was getting built behind the scenes, find I focused on ways I could make little technical upgrades to improve maintenance and design. Things I added in this month were Google Analytics, see a contact form, social share buttons and attempted to add a blogroll.
A few posts from the ““Tech Tips”section of AmpleFound that helped me get started in these ventures were:
Even though my blog still gets pretty minimal visits, I thought it would still be a good idea to set up a Google Analytics account for my site. I think this comes from a mentality of: “Well what if I make it big someday and traffic is through the roof and I’m making thousands on advertising?!”. Huge aspirations aside, I think this will be especially handy in a few months and I’m interested in seeing some historical data such as popular posts and traffic patterns.
Blogger has a very basic “stats’ section on the home dashboard that looks like this:
For a newbie blog, I love this and I think it’s awesome that Blogger provides this for free within their platform. However, going back to the “What if I make it big?” mentality, I think having a Google Analytics account will be useful because of the wide breadth of
information you’ll be able to capture in the long haul.
So the next thing that I decided to explore on the backend was adding what are called “gadgets” Blogger. I first went to “Contact Me” but decided to forego due to the $47.00 investment. Blogger happens to have a free Contact Form gadget, however it doesn’t include a CAPTCHA feature and it’s pretty ugly looking. For now, it will suffice in making my blog look somewhat more legitimate.
Another thing that I added was a some social buttons. The post, “How to Add Social Share Buttons to Your Blog” that Nico wrote was a perfect walk through. The Share This site is also very clear on how to add the code based on what blogging platform you use. I went through and tested out various styles and buttons that I would want to include and then voila! But ouch on no social love yet…
The last thing I decided to implement on my blog was a blogroll of other pages that I draw inspiration from not only food-wise, but also content and design-wise. However, this became one of the more frustrating tweaks I implemented. I rounded up a list of about 10 blogs and tried to add them to my blogroll to no avail. The Blogger gadget would only
upload one name or none at all. After spending about 30 minutes playing with it, I think I’ll be looking for an outside code to help me with this.
What I really want to know is how do I go from my plain Jane blog to something as sophisticated as this? So far the little tweaks I’ve made are small potatoes in the grand scheme of things. But these smaller steps have inspired me to do some digging on my own to see what kind of other options are out there to give my blog a little more sparkle and shine.
Goals of the Month:
– Upload 4 new posts
– Add 5 more recipes to the bank
– Explore at least 2 new design layouts
– Find a code for a blogroll