Does Your Blog’s About Page Answer These 7 Questions?

Does Your Blog’s About Page Answer These 7 Questions?

Bloggers who are just starting out tend to either write one of these About Pages hastily or outright forget them entirely. Some of the reasons I’ve seen include this type of thinking:

“Readers are smart! They can figure out what kind of person I am by reading all of my posts if they want to.”

The problem with that line of logic? You run the risk of readers not caring or not interested in you long enough to read your posts in the first place. Having an informative about page can go a long way. It gives you a chance to be transparent about your intentions and let your players know a little more about you.

Who are you?

Include the online handle you’d like to be addressed by. Unless your name is actually admin, you’ll want to reflect an identity that you wish to use. Some people like to use their real names. If you’re a gamer (and I bet you are), add a little information on the games you play and the classes or roles that you stick with. If you’re a part of a guild, tell us a little bit about them.

What’s your gender?

Now before you pounce on me, I’m not saying that it’s significant. Being a dude or a woman isn’t going to affect your blogging skill. But, I’ve been burned before in the past because I used the wrong noun when I’ve linked to or wrote about other bloggers. You can ask Cynwise and Lilpeanut. Otherwise, you may end up being referred to as an it!

Have any social media pages?

If you use Twitter or have a Facebook page for your blog, consider including those. Other solid choices could be your Pinterest, Google+, or your stream page (Own3d or Twitch, for example).

What is your blog about?

Lay out your primary focus. It’s not a problem to deviate once in a while and add a personal post or two that isn’t related to your main niche. But if you have a home and garden blog, I expect to see more posts about that instead of fashion related topics. You don’t necessarily have to restrict yourself. But if your best friend asks you what your blog is about and you can’t explain to them in 10 seconds, then you might want to refine that some.

Why should we read it?

It’s a similar thought process to the above question. You can say you write for entertainment. You can say you write to teach others. It can be as something simple as offering your personal insight or perspective about a game or something structured like full guides and tutorials on accomplishing a specific goal.

What are your interests?

Add a bit of personality! If you’re comfortable with it, share a few interesting things about yourself. It’s cool to find out that both you and a blogger share an interest and a similar past time. Do you play Magic? Do you watch Community? Own a Mac? You get the idea.

Do you have a picture?

For privacy reasons, I don’t suggest sharing your own photo unless you’re really comfortable with the idea. But since you’re on this blog with an interest in blogging, I’m going to make the presumption that you’re interested in some form of gaming. Consider using a digital avatar of your main character in your game in a wicked pose. It’s not a necessity, but don’t underestimate the little things.

Going to cap off the post with a few examples of excellent About pages.

Examples

forthelore

 

healbot

 

bossypally

 

pon-about

 

about-jared

WordPress Plugins for your World of Warcraft blog

WordPress Plugins for your World of Warcraft blog

If you’re running a WordPress installation of a World of Warcraft blog (which you should, since WordPress is a beast), you might be looking for different ways to customize it. The WordPress repository has thousands of plugins and it’ll take a long time to sort through and figure out what you would benefit from. With that in mind, I wanted to recommend my own list of plugins for any aspiring bloggers looking to make life easy for themselves.

Security Plugins

Take it from a blogger who has been hacked. Never skimp on security.

Akismet: Best anti-spam protection you can get for your blog. You might think to yourself that your blog will never get spam, but as your audience grows and your popularity increases, so will your spam.

Login Lockdown: This plugin limits the amount of failed logins from any range of IPs. If someone can’t login after say… 5 attempts, it automatically prevents any further attempts. You better make sure you get your login right the first time!

WP Bans: Tired of trolls? You can whip out bans based on IP, range, host name, user agent, and referring URLs.

SEO Plugins

All in One SEO Pack: Whenever you write a post, it’ll optimize your titles for search engines and create META tags automatically. You can use it right after it’s installed without having to configure anything. But, you do have the option to override certain aspects. People keep asking me how do I get people to find my blog? This is one solution.

WordPress SEO by Yoast: Another excellent SEO alternative.

Advertising Plugins

AdRotate: Should you feel the need to run advertisements on your blog to help support your expenses, I highly recommend using AdRotate. It’s extremely convenient and easy to use.

Mobile Plugins

WPtouch: Formats your site with a mobile theme for visitors using touch-based smartphones.

Mobilepress: If you really want to make sure your site works on all mobile platforms, look into Mobilepress.

Utility Plugins

Jetpack: Adds various additional features to your blog. If nothing else, get it for the After the Deadline aspect which checks your style, grammar and spelling before you hit the publish button and prevents it from going live until you’re happy with it.

Broken Link Checker: As you add more and more links to your blog (you are linking to other posts and blogs right?), you’ll notice that sooner or later, blogs will die out or their URLs change. This plugin helps you by constantly scanning your blog for broken links. I wish I had this earlier. I have over 2000 broken links throughout my entire site somewhere.

Livefyre Realtime Comments: Completely overrides your comment system and uses theirs instead. If anyone tweets about your post or mentions it on Facebook or something, those conversations will show up here. Even does it in real time. Tr

Smart YouTube Pro: Allows you to embed videos and galleries from YouTube, Vimeo, and others more conveniently.

W3 Total Cache: Big time performance increasing plugin. The more you write, the more readers you get. Eventually your blog’s going to slow down a little. There were days were my site was sluggish before I switched to W3 Total Cache.

WP Maintenance mode: Throws up an emergency splash page in the event your blog needs to get taken down temporarily. Very handy for any upgrades or theme changes.

WP Polls: If you ever need to poll the audience, you can use this to help.

WordPress Popular Posts: Your blog posts are often timeless. Sure you’ll be writing patch specific or instance specific content. But every once in a while, you’ll write content that’s relevant no matter what expansion it is. Don’t bury it. Have a sidebar widget rotate through previously popular posts.

WordPress Editorial Calendar: Great scheduling and planning plugin for any serious power blogger. Use it to track and schedule posts throughout the week.

Are you a WordPress user yourself? What plugins would you recommend for newer bloggers?

WordPress Slowly Becoming the WoW Blogging Platform of Choice

Renowned WoW Blogger BigRedKitty has migrated from his home on Blogspot to his own domain. A quick examination of his footer reveals that he too has switched over to the WordPress platform.

Earlier in the week, Gwaendar (of Altitis) switched from Blogger to WordPress. Not far behind him Before that, Ess also moved to WordPress.

From the list of Blogs I follow on Google Reader:

Blogger

WordPress

Blogspot Bloggers: 15 14
Wordpress Bloggers: 15 16

Conclusion: Both platforms perform as intended, but we’ve seen evidence of people switching from Blogger to WordPress. I have yet to encounter a WoW Blogger switching from WordPress to Blogger. Of course, there must be countless of WoW Blogs that have escaped under my radar so those numbers up there could very well be skewed in either direction.

So to all of you young Blogglings out there, I suggest saving yourself a day’s worth of effort and just using WordPress initially instead of signing up for Blogger and then switching to WordPress =).