Blogging, the act of posting regular updates about a particular topic on a website, is one of the most popular methods of publishing on the internet. By looking at some of the statistics from the
largest blogging platforms, we know that there are at least 250 million blogs on the internet today. These range from
teenagers ranting about video games in their bedrooms to massive, multi-author sites like Boing Boing or even a site like Huffington Post which demonstrates the blurry lines between a blog and an online newspaper. When it comes to building a blog on your Jimdo
website, you’re probably looking for something squarely in the middle of those examples.
Rather than writing a post explaining why you should start a blog on your site, I’d rather give you some practical advice and some practices for how to set up your blog
. However, just to cover the point, remember that nothing can help your search engine rankings more than providing regularly updated, relevant content on a
particular topic. This topic could be your business itself, your general industry, or even your local region. Placing a blog on your website gives you an easy-to-update option for powering fresh
content on your site.
Creating a blog in Jimdo has two major topics that I’d like to discuss: how to create blog posts themselves and how to make those posts really great. In Part 2 of this article
, I’ll dive into how to promote and link to your blog posts on your website.
Getting started with a blog post
The first step to starting a blog on your Jimdo website is to activate the feature. After logging into your site, click on the Blog
icon in the Site Admin
the right of the screen. This is where you will see your list of published blog posts and drafts. If you’ve never used the blog before, you will first need to press the Activate now
button. Next, you will be prompted to write your first post. Click that link.
When you create a new blog post, the screen looks very similar to when you create a new page of your website. However there are a few differences and settings that are unique to blog posts. These
will be open when you create the post, but you can always return to your blog post and click on the blog title to make changes to these settings.
Blog post title
This is obviously the title of the blog post. It will appear at the top of the blog post, in any automatic links to the blog post (more on that later), and in the actual URL of the blogpost.
The title you choose will have a big influence on the eventual search engine ranking of
your post, so pick carefully and try to incorporate some relevant keywords. You can
update the title at any time, however, the URL will always be set to the original title you post, so think carefully. If you find you need to change the URL later, you’ll need to delete the
post and make a new one with the correct title, which is pretty easy using the "copy blog post" option.
By default, all new posts are in draft mode. This means that the eyeball icon with the slash through it is activated and that no one can see it publicly yet. When you're ready to make the
post visible to the world, click the eyeball icon.
Jimdo comments are activated by default. If you would like more advanced commenting features, you can deactivate the Jimdo comments by clicking the “talk bubble” icon and use a third-party
commenting system like Disqus or Facebook commenting. Both of those options provide better user logins
and make it easier to have back and forth discussions with your readers.
Date and Time
These fields allow you to set the displayed posting time and date for your post. If you do not set anything, it will default to the current date. The date information will also be used in the
URL string for your blog post (the address of the page). You can update this after publishing, but the URL string will not change after the initial posting unless you make a copy of the post
and then publish that one with the new date.
Tags come into play with your display options. A best practice would be to set at least two tags for each post. The first one should be a category for that post. You’ll be able to use this to
make category blog pages if you like (again, more on this later). The second tag that I’d recommend is a single tag that combines the month and year (i.e. July2015). Then, you can easily build your own blog archives using these tags. On important note about
tags is that each word will be a separate tag, so if you want to have multiple words, you should smush them together or separate them with hyphens.
Building great blog posts
Once you’ve got all your settings entered, it is time to build out your blog post. One of the great things about Jimdo is that our system provides the same tools for building blog posts that you get
to use in building pages for your website—element by element
When creating your actual posts, mix up the types of ways that you display your content by adding headings, lists, columns, photos, videos, and galleries. Remember to keep the text scannable
. Your readers will appreciate the richer experience and will be more
likely to want to come back and read more posts in the future.
Essentially, each blog post itself should act like a landing page and should have a specific point that you are communicating. It could be to promote a new product or something as simple as giving a
recap of an event.
Just One Way Ticket
for sharing buttons and also created an
author block that she puts at the bottom of each blog post. This is simply a Columns element with an Photo element in one column, and a heading, and two text elements in the other. Below that she
also posts a Columns element with two Photo elements that link to some other blog posts that she thinks would complement the topic of the current post. Sabrina has added some extra CSS to her
headings and the top Columns element to give them a gray background.
Try to work in a call-to-action by encouraging your readers to subscribe to your blog or newsletter, share your post with their friends, or to leave a comment to further discuss your topic.
Subscribe We recommend using Mailchimp to create email newsletters. They have a great customizable widget that you can add to a permanent place on your website, or you
can embed the sign-up widget right into your blog post.
Your Jimdo blog also has a built-in RSS feed. What is RSS? Basically it is a way to get information from
all the websites you regularly check to be sent to you in one centralized location instead of having to go out to all the sites you frequent every day. I am an avid RSS user to this day and
currently using a free, mulit-platform tool called Feedly to manage this for me.
The RSS feed for your website will be this link: http://yoursite.jimdo.com/rss/blog. You can make a text hyperlink that says “Subscribe” and links to that external link, or
you can download an RSS icon from the web, upload it to Jimdo
as an image and then link the image to your RSS address.
Comment Blog posts have long been the launchpads for online conversation. After you put your spin on a topic out into the world, it is great to hear back from your readers to
get feedback, agreement, or dissent. You can then use these interactions to further educate or you can find inspiration for future blog post topics.
Jimdo has a basic built-in commenting system already included with each blog post. If you would like to expand your blog’s commenting capabilities to include threaded responses, avatars, and
more, you can follow these tutorials to use the Facebook or
Disqus commenting system instead.
Publishing your post and making more
Once you have your blog post just the way you want it, it is time to share it with the world by changing it from draft to public. To do this, go click on the headline at the top of your blog post to
access the blog settings. You just need to click the eyeball icon and your post will be live for the world to visit. You can set the date and time that will be displayed and associated with the post,
but there is no way to schedule the post to go live at a time in the future. You will need to manually make the blog public at the time you want by pressing the Public button and then saving the
After spending the time to get one blog post set up just perfectly, wouldn’t it be great if you could re-purpose all that hard work? Well, I’m happy to tell you that there is! Click on the blog link
in the Site Admin to see your list of blog posts, and you can also click the Copy link next to your first post to duplicate it.
I recommend creating all your new blog posts this way so that you will be able to keep your blog posts consistent with the same format. There is no need to reinvent the wheel if you made an author
block or inserted sharing buttons.
At this point, you should be able to activate the blog on your Jimdo website and start writing some really great blog posts. Don’t forget to engage your readers and encourage them to comment and
share your message.
As soon as you published your first blog post by making it go public, a new element is added to the home page of your website. This is a Blog Display element
. You can move it to a different page, change the settings, or delete it if you don’t want it to
appear there. In Part 2 of this article, we’ll talk more about the blog display
and all the ways we can promote
your blog posts on your Jimdo website to make sure everyone can find your new feed of masterpieces!