For Sexy Wednesday, I’m giving you a tour of my blog’s sidebar. Why? The sidebar of your content is very important real estate for you to take into consideration. It could be keeping readers around forever and it could be sending them away never to be seen again. Which one is your sidebar doing? Take a look at mine to see how you might be able to prioritize and clean up your sidebar to work harder for you.
Watch Analyzing Your Blog’s Sidebar:
1. Email opt in form should be at the TOP!
Your readers should not have to search to stay updated with you. Prominently place the form and offer something for those who aren’t sure they want to join. I give away a free Twitter guide to anyone who joins my list.
2. Try to avoid outgoing links as much as possible
Unless it’s a part of your business plan with ads and sponsors or you have something happening off your site that you’re really passionate about, try to not link to websites outside of yours.
3. Social links don’t have to send people away
You’ll notice readers can engage me on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter all without ever leaving my site. The funcationality of the widgets these sites offer allow new followers without having to go directly to the site. Very blogger friendly!
4. Show off your bragging rights
Talk about how you’ve been appreciated by other big brands. But make sure you link to a press page with more information instead of immediately linking away. It might be impressive enough to see the names and mkae them want to surf around for more.
5. Definitely link to your products and services
This is a great space to lead your visitors to how they can support your business or hire you if they want. It’s not the first thing they need to see but it should still be prominently placed.
6. Limit what’s in the sidebar
Talk with users about things they’re looking for and functionality they would like to see. Other than that, don’t overload your sidebar with any and everything. It’s not worth all the distractions for what you want your customers to do.