Stop! Check These Seven Things before Hitting Publish

By Antonio Tooley

You wrote an awesome post and you’re about publish it.

You’re aware of the importance of the editing process, so you made sure to read that piece, correct some misspellings, and improve the structure of a few sentences.

Was that enough?

Wait! There is no need to rush!

You spent all that time in research and writing, so it would be silly to skip the final stage of the process and publish an imperfect post.

Here are seven things you should check before hitting the publish button.

Before You Publish, Check the Tags

Tags help your visitors find the post they are looking for when they search on your site.

Plus, these words and phrases at the end of the post will enable the readers to find more information in the same category.

That’s a really great strategy that keeps them a little longer on your site.

Have you seen those blogs with generic tags such as marketing or life?

That’s not what you should do.

The tags should be more specific, because they serve to classify the post in a certain category on your blog.

Sherice Jacob, a blogger for Kissmetrics, shared a nice tip,

Tags are a great way to organize the content of your post in such a way that visitors can easily read more on the topics that interest them.

Keep in mind, tags are not the same as keywords, so putting in something such as “dog, dogs, puppy, puppies, training” on your dog training site won’t really help.

Instead, you’ll want to create broad set of tags that, like categories, can be used for several articles, such as ”dog training,” “puppy training,” “training tools,” and so forth.

The Title

It’s important to rework the title before publishing the piece.

Andrew Stevens, content manager at EduGeeksClub, recommends bloggers always edit the working version of the title, because it no longer represents the essence of the piece.

We all get carried away when writing blog post. Even when we stick to an outline, we get new ideas while writing, so the piece can easily go into an unexpected direction. Don’t bother thinking of the perfect title before you start writing the post. Have a working title, and then rephrase it or think of something completely different after you finish the piece. You know, just like filmmakers do.

The Big Picture

What was the point of this article?

Did you preserve it?

If the big picture is blurry, maybe you need to add more information or cut out excessive sentences and paragraphs.

Make sure your readers can understand the point as soon as they start reading the post.

The Rambling

You got a bit too energized by that last cup of coffee, so did a part of your post turn out to be a stream of semi-conscious ramblings?

That won’t work for your readers.

Check the post and cut out the rambling!

Stick to the essential information and tips your readers are interested in.

The Flow

The content may flow perfectly in your own head, but is it really as clear as you perceive it?

Do you assume your audience has previous knowledge of certain terms, so you went directly onto the specific?

That’s not okay.

Give yourself some time away from the post, and then return to it from a reader’s point-of-view.

Assume you don’t know anything about the topic, and fill in the gaps where necessary.

The Facts

If you want to be a successful blogger, you have to tell the truth.

Your readers will check the information you rely on, so you’d better make sure it’s supported by facts.

If you notice you’ve exaggerated some events or you presented sources from unreliable resources as facts, you need to edit those parts before publication.

Take those pro- and anti-vax blogs as an example: They inflate the information so much that it sounds ridiculous when you read it.

You want to avoid that impression.

Double-check the facts!

The Call-to-Action

Does the conclusion of your post tell the reader what to do next?

You mustn’t leave them hanging!

After reading the content, they should have an idea of the action they are supposed to take, so clarify that for them through the call-to-action.

The editing stage gives you a chance to fix all weak points in the post and make it just perfect for the target audience, before hitting publish.

Don’t skip it!

What else do you do before you hit publish on a blog post?

Antonio Tooley

Antonio is a blogger and a consultant who provides writing assistance to job seekers. He loves writing about marketing, education and productivity. He's also crazy about riding his bike and bumping into new people (when he's on foot). He will be happy to meet you on Facebook and Twitter.

View all posts by Antonio Tooley