Category Archives: Tutorials

Understanding Google Analyitcs for Bloggers

How to Blog: Understanding Google Analytics

How to Blog 12 easy to follow lessons and tutorails from A Royal Daughter

Understanding Google Analytics

Over the past two weeks we’ve talked about discovering and embracing our purpose in blogging, intentional personal branding, writing a mission statement for our blogs, how to create a custom font-only logo for free, and how to start a blog on Blogger and on WordPress. We also discussed finding your voice in blogging. It’s been a bit of a whirl-wind, and you guys have offered incredible feedback and insight into your own blogging experiences!

Today we’re going to tackle tracking our statistics. Those of you who have followed me for a while now know I often wrestle with tracking my blog statistics, specifically numbers. As I’ve mentioned before, it is easy for me to almost idolize numbers, specifically pageviews and subscribers. If you haven’t read it already, please take time to read this post about why our goals should never be solely based on numbers.

I use two different programs to track my blog statistics: Google Analytics and Stat Tracker. I use StatTracker primarily for verifying Google Analytics. They e-mail a report once a week with basic statistical data. I do like that I can save that data to review several months down the road if I want to.

Why track statistics?

  • To measure your blog’s growth over time
  • To track referrals + determine if sponsor investments have paid off
  • To determine your most popular content (what do your readers like?)
  • To determine which social media platforms refer the most traffic
  • To help you plan future blog posts so that they will be well-received
  • To help you determine the future direction of your blog.

Understanding Google Analytics

To learn how to install Google Analytics on Blogger, please read this post. You can download the Google Analytics plugin for WordPress here.

Lets start by talking about the basic reports, and what they mean. Here’s a screenshot of my dashboard.

Understanding Google Analytics

Unique Visitors: the number of unique, individual readers who visit your blog.

Pageviews: the total number of times your blog has been viewed.

Visits: represent the number of individual sessions initiated by all the visitors to your site, and thus will almost always be higher than Unique Visitors.

Bounce Rate: measures how many people click through to another page on your blog leaving your blog. The lower the bounce rate, the more people are clicking through to another page on your blog.

Time spent on site: the average amount of time each reader spends on your blog.

Pages/Visits: tracks the average number of pages a visitor views each time they visit.

So what do we know about my readers based on that screenshot? Well, we know they spend a long time on my blog – almost eight minutes! And we know they keep coming back, nearly 70% of all of my traffic is returning visitors. Those are two good things, right? But we also know that my bounce rate is kind of high, so my readers view my latest post and then close the browser without clicking through to another post. Can you see how this is all great information to have?

Tracking Statistics

For those of us who pursue blogging as more than just a hobby, tracking data about our blog traffic serves as one way to measure our growth and evaluate the effectiveness and success of our hard work and financial investment.

Measuring blog growth with Google Analytics

One of the benefits of Google Analytics is being able specify a period of time for which you would like to view your statistics. If you’re wanting to track your blog’s growth over time (I’d recommend over a 3, 6, and 12 month period) you are able to compare pageviews and unique visitors by specifying your desired dates.

Date Range on Google Analytics Jan-Mar

Date Range on Google Analytics Apr-Jun

Tracking referrals

If you are investing income into advertising your blog, I strongly recommend closely tracking your referrals.

Using Google Analytics as a Blogger

I’m a bit of a strategizing nerd, so when I advertise A Royal Daughter I track the number of referrals I receive from each blog I sponsor, as well as the percentage of increase in social media referrals I received during each sponsorship. I then compare the growth to the cost of the sponsor spot, and I am able to determine if the sponsorship paid off or not.

Tracking referrals will also help you determine which social media platforms direct the most traffic to your blog. While this doesn’t give you that much concrete information, it may reflect the effectiveness of your own efforts on social media, as well as where your online community is most actively involved.

For example, for many months Twitter was my strongest social media referrer, which makes complete sense to me because I am most active on Twitter. But recently some of my posts have been shared over and over again on Facebook, resulting in Facebook being my top social media referrer for the past couple of months. This tells me that many of my newer readers are most active of Facebook, and challenges me to strengthen my community on Facebook.

Understanding Google Analyitcs for Bloggers

Determining Popular Content + Planning Future Content

To determine your most popular content you’ll want to look at your direct traffic sources.

Understanding Google Analytics via A Royal Daughter

I definitely have a wide variety of popular posts, don’t I? The Blogger vs. WordPress and Pinterest verification posts generate a huge percentage of my search engine traffic. And four out of ten of my top posts are related to infertility and miscarriage.

Identifying where your blog traffic lands will help you determine:

  • Which blog posts are ranking well for Search Engine Optimization
  • Which blog posts are most popular with your readers

Once I determine my most popular posts, I review them and do my best to evaluate their success. Why were they popular? Did they resonate with my target audience? Was the SEO off the charts? Did it step on toes and cause controversy? Was it well-written, unique story-telling, or a detailed tutorial that answered a tricky question?

I also evaluate whether the post can be recreated. Obviously I’m not going to try to rewrite the exact same story, that would result in a fairly boring blog! But perhaps a new story can be written in a similar manner, or a tutorial was well received because of the screenshots. What is it about the post that can be replicated in one way or another?

As I mentioned yesterday, on some level we as bloggers are not only writing for ourselves, we’re writing for our audience. And identifying what is well-received by your audience can help you plan and schedule future content.

Key Word Search

Taking a look at your organic searches will also help you determine how people are finding your blog.

Organic Searches Google Analytics

Note: (not provided) occurs when someone who is signed into Google (i.e. with blogger, gmail, youtube, G+, etc.) and does a search. Google does not report the keyword searched when the searcher is logged into Google.

Like I said, most of my search traffic comes from people searching Blogger vs. WordPress.

These are the most basic reports, but Google Analytics is highly customizable. Danielle at Framed Frosting recently shared a great tutorial on how to customize campaigns for tracking sponsorship referrals.

Resources and Engage

Google Analytics Deciphered
5 Tips to use Google Analytics More Effectively
50 Resources for Getting the Most out of Google Analytics
Time Saving Google Analytics Reports
5 Goals Every Blogger Should Set up in Google Analytics
5 Traffic Sources You Should See in Google Analytics
Introduction to Using Google Analytics

Do you track your statistics?

What is the number one thing you do with the information you receive?

How does it help you plan for future growth?

 

How to start a blog on Wordpress

How to Blog: How to Start a Blog on WordPress

How to Blog 12 easy to follow lessons and tutorails from A Royal DaughterHow to Start a Blog on WordPress

Catch up on this series by setting your very first blog goals, planning your personal brandingwriting a mission statement, and creating your custom logo. If you’re looking for how to set up a blog on Blogger, you can find out how here.

Before you invest in WordPress, please read this post comparing Blogger vs. WordPressWhile I personally love WordPress, I know it isn’t for everyone, and I want you to make the most informed and best decision for you! Here’s a quick pros + cons of blogging on self-hosted WordPress.

Pros:

  • Content ownership: you own your content, the copyrights to your content, and the ability to decide what appears on your blog.
  • Optimized SEO: WordPress themes (Especially Genesis and Thesis) have built-in search engine optimization, allowing you to write, evaluate, and edit your posts before you ever hit publish. (FYI: my pageviews more than quadrupled within 3 months of moving to WordPress, and google searches continue to make up about 50% of my traffic!
  • Enhanced ability to set up an online marketplace, or other website qualities.

Cons:

  • Cost prohibitive. I’ll go into my own personal cost to move ARD to WordPress below, but juts know that using the WordPress platform is an investment.
  • Limited design ability. Customizing a WordPress theme is not nearly as intuitive as it is on Blogger, and there aren’t quite as many tutorials out there to help you through the process. However, WordPress has oodles of helpful forums for troubleshooting design problems.
Note: this post contains affiliate links. That means if you make a purchase using one of my links, I receive a small commission for referring you. Affiliate income goes directly to our make-a-baby fund, my husband and I really appreciate it when you shop through A Royal Daughter!

Cost of Starting a blog on WordPress

There are cheap-enough ways to launch a blog on WordPress, since there are plenty of free WordPress themes to choose from. The biggest cost upfront is the monthly hosting costs.

Many of you asked what I spent on ARD when I switched from Blogger to WordPress.

  • Hosting: I chose a 3 year plan to host aroyaldaughter.com with BlueHost. That brought the cost down to about $4 a month, but I had to pay it all up front. Total cost: $145.
  • I purchased the Genesis Framework because I had heard so many great things about it. Total cost: $60.
  • I also purchased the Pure Elegance child theme, which I then customized. Total cost: $20.
  • Total cost to launch my blog on WordPress, for the next three years: $225. That’s roughly $75 per year. Not a bad investment, right? For me, it was totally worth it.

How to start a blog on WordPress

I’m going to show you how to set up a WordPress blog on Bluehost. You will need to have an account with Bluehost, and as you progress, they will prompt you to create an account with WordPress.

1. Once you have purchased your domain + hosting, log into your hosting server and click on the CPanel (control panel). Under Website Builders, click on “WordPress.”

How to Start a Blog on WordPress

2. You will be prompted to install WordPress on your domain. Click “Start.”

How to Start a Blog on WordPress1

3. Select the domain to which you wish to install WordPress.

How to Start a Blog on WordPress2

It will tell you something is already there – just keep clicking through to install WordPress. You will be prompted to create an account with WordPress, including the e-mail + password that will be associated with your account. You can use the automatically populated information, or select your own.

How to set up a blog on WordPress with Bluehost

4. Once WordPress is uploaded to your hosting site, you can access the WordPress dashboard by logging in at yourwebsite.com/wp-admin/ where you will sign in with the information you selected while in your hosting company’s control panel.

At this point you should have already purchased your theme + child theme. I will be demonstrating with Genesis + the Runway child theme.

Click on Appearance > Themes

How to Install Genesis on WordPress

Click Install Themes and then select “upload.”

How to install Genesis on WordPress1

Locate the (zipped) Genesis file that you previously downloaded when you purchased the theme, select it, and upload. Once it has uploaded, click “activate.”

How to install Genesis on WordPress2

To install the child theme, repeat the process (Install Theme > Upload) and select the child theme (in this case, Runway), and click Install Now. You will have to activate the child theme, and at this point your blog is officially launched!

How to start a blog using Genesis and a Child theme

How to Customize a Genesis Child Theme

Customizing a child theme (especially something basic like Runway) is fairly simple, but unless you’re ultra CSS-savvy, you are limited in what customizations you can make.

This tutorial assumes you have already created a custom logo for your blog.

1. Log into your dashboard, and click on Appearance > Header. This page will tell you the required dimensions for your website/blog header. In this case it is 1152 X 100 px.

How to Customize a Genesis Child Theme

2. Before you save your new header, be sure to unclick “show header text with image.”

How to Customize a Genesis Child Theme1

3. You’ll also need to click on Appearance > Themes > Customize, and delete Site Tagline (but leave the Site Title).

How to Customize a Gensis Child Theme

4. Okay, are you ready to do a teensy bit of CSS adjustment? I hope so, because there is one last step we have to do to get your custom header finished up.

Click on Appearance > Editor > Stylesheet

How to Customize Runway Child Theme

5. Search for the following code:

#title {
font-family: ‘Fjalla One’;
font-size: 58px;
font-size: 3.625rem;
letter-spacing: 5px;
margin: 40px 0 8px;
margin: 2.5rem 0 0.5rem;
}

and delete everything within the {  }.

6. Search for the following code:

#title a{
color: #000;
}

and replace “#ooo” with “transparent”

How to customize Runway Child Theme1

Save your changes, and now your new WordPress blog has a customized logo! Congratulations, you’ve just launched your custom, self-hosted blog on WordPress!

How to start a blog on WordPress

Resources + Engage

Blogger to WordPress Transfer

How to Start a Blog (or Website)

Migrate from Blogger to WordPress

How to Create a Blog with WordPress 

Free WordPress Themes

If you’re on WordPress, what is your #1 favorite plugin?

If you’re not on WordPress, why are you considering WordPress as a blogging platform?

 

How to Blog: How to Start a Blog on Blogger

How to Blog 12 easy to follow lessons and tutorails from A Royal DaughterHow to Blog: How to start a blog on blogger

So you’re thinking about starting a blog. You’ve thought long and hard about your purpose and you’ve spent time setting your very first blog goals, planning your personal branding, writing a mission statement, and creating your custom logo. It’s time to get your blog set up!

Before you learn how to start a blog on Blogger, it is a good idea to research the difference between Blogger and WordPressIn case you haven’t done the research, here’s a quick pros + cons of setting up a blog on Blogger.

Pros:

  • It’s free. Unless you purchase your own domain (scroll down for more information) there are absolutely no start up costs associated with blogging on blogger.
  • Third party advertising is allowed. This means if you ever wish to monetize your blog you can set up advertisements on your blog.
  • User-friendly. Creating your design on Blogger is fairly intuitive, and there are tons of resources out there to help you with a design.

Cons:

  • Google technically owns your content. You can read more about that in Content Ownership.
  • Creating strong SEO (search engine optimizations) is more difficult on Blogger
  • Limited design options. If you want to setup an online marketplace, or run your blog more like a website, there are limited options for creating that kind of site on Blogger.

If you decide to go with WordPress, check back later this week, I’ll be walking you through setting up a blog on WordPress.

How to Start a Blog on Blogger

In the interest of full disclosure, some links included in the post are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase through one of my links, I earn a small commission for referring you. Income earned through affiliate partnerships goes to our make-a-baby fund, we really appreciate it when you shop through ARD!

1. Set up an account with blogger.com

2. Log into the dashboard and click “new blog”

How to start a blog on blogger

  • Under “title” enter the name of your blog. Example: Best Blogging Resources.
  • Under address enter the url (it will be followed by .blogpsot.com) that you wish to use. Blogger will automatically tell you if the url is available or not.
  • Click on “create blog” and you’ve just launched your new blog!

But let’s not leave it there, let’s customize it a bit, okay?

How to set up a custom domain on Blogger

1. Log into your dashboard and select “settings”

2. Under Publishing, click on add custom domain.

How to set up set up a custom domain on Blogger

In the past Blogger had a super easy way to integrate a custom domain purchased through GoDaddy, but that service is no longer available and you now have to manually verify ownership of your domain.

In this example, I purchased the domain from GoDaddy, and I’ve also purchased domains through BlueHost. I personally prefer BlueHost, but because of GoDaddy’s long-standing relationship with blogger, I went ahead and used their service because I was a little more familiar with their dashboard.

3. Click “Add Custom Domain” and enter the url of the custom domain you purchased.

How to set up set up a custom domain on Blogger2

If you click on settings instructions you will see something that looks like this:

How to set up set up a custom domain on Blogger1

Choose “top-level domain” and read through those instructions. They might seem confusing, but just familiarize yourself with those steps, then come back to where you’ll input your custom domain, and click “save.”

4. When you click “save” Blogger will prompt you to verify your ownership of the domain. It will give you the codes you need to plug in to your domain dashboard.

How to set up a custom domain for Blogger

5. Log into GoDaddy (or wherever you purchased your domain!) and click view your domains. Select your domain and click “launch.”

How to Claim DNS on GoDaddy

Click on DNS Zone File, then select “edit”

How to Set up a custom domain for Blogger through Godaddy

Click “Quick Add” and enter the code provided in Blogger.

How to claim DNS in GoDaddy for Blogger1

  • In the left column enter the url of your custom domain, and in the right column enter ghs.google.com.
  • Add a second line and in the left column enter the code short code provided by Blogger, and in the right column enter the long code provided by Blogger. 

Be sure to save your changes. It will take up to 48 hours for GoDaddy and Blogger to communicate the changes to each other, so if it doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry! Just be patient, and check back every few hours to see if it has redirected.

How to Add a Custom Header

Last week we created a custom font-only logo using paint.net. Here’s how you’ll install that logo.

1. Log into your dashboard and click on “layout”

2. Under the header gadget, click “edit”

How to Add a Custom Header to Blogger

Upload your header, select “instead of title and description” and click “save”

How to Add a custom Header in Blogger

If the header doesn’t look centered, you can use this tutorial to center it.

Top 5 Blog Design Tips:

1. Keep it simple. If you’re just starting out and you’re not comfortable making many changes to your design, keep it as simple as you can: white background, dark font sized at 12 or 14 pt, and very few gadgets.

2. Limit the sidebar to only one. We read left to right, and keeping the distractions to a minimum, and on one side of your content, will allow your readers to focus on the main event: your writing. My personal preference is a sidebar to the right of the content, but everyone has their own preferences!

3. Big pictures. When you upload your pictures don’t shrink them down too small. The general rule is that pictures should be sized at least 600 pixels or wider.

4. Justify your text left. Again, we read left to right, and centered text is straining to the eyes. Imagine trying to read a magazine or newspaper article that had centered font! Your eyes would be strained from focusing and refocusing. Justify text to the left for optimum readability.

5. Love your design. Remember, you’re branding yourself! Use colors, fonts, and graphics that represent who you are behind the computer screen, and embrace it! Eventually you’ll want to use your brand across all social media platforms, business cards, and maybe even business letterhead. Don’t settle for a logo, work with it until you have something you absolutely love!

Start a Blog on Blogger

Resources + Engage

Looking for more tutorials on how to customize your design on Blogger? Here are some great resources:

Hopefully my tutorials will be helpful!

The Cutest Blog on the Block

Designer Blogs

Design It Love It

What kind of tutorials would you like to see in the future?

Do you have your own domain? Will you keep it when it is time to renew?

If you chose to blog on Blogger, what was the deciding factor for you?

 

 

From Idea to eBook Online Course

How To Blog: Clean, Simple, and Free Blog Design

How to Blog 12 easy to follow lessons and tutorails from A Royal DaughterHow to Blog:
Clean, Simple, and Free Blog Design

Now that you’ve thought about your purpose, planned out your blog brand, and written a mission statement, it’s time to get down to the actual design!

If you have the financial resources to invest in a professional blog design, I highly recommend it. Not only will a designer be able to create a custom and elaborate design, but it will save you lots of frustration!

Next week I will take you step-by-step through starting a blog on Blogger, and starting a blog on WordPress. But before we tackle those two monsters, you need to know how to create your own simple, font-only logo.

There are three free alternatives to photoshop:

PicMonkey

PicMonkey is a free web-based image editing service. I’m a huge fan of PicMonkey for photo editing, but I’ve never really used it for blog design. You can read this tutorial on how to create a blog header using PicMonkey.

Gimp

I admit I know nothing about Gimp. Okay, I know one thing: it is an open-source version of photoshop. I’ve never used it, so I can’t speak to how intuitive it is, but I’ve read great things about it. Here’s a tutorial for creating a blog header in Gimp.

Paint.net

Goodness I love Paint.net. Before I acquired photoshop I used Paint.net probably every day. From photo editing to typography projects, Paint.net is super user-friendly. It’s not great at designing graphics, it can’t hold a candle to adobe’s illustrator or photoshop, but for basic projects it’s a handy little program to have. You can download it here.

How to Create Font-Only logo using Paint.net

Step One:

Download Paint.net and follow your computer’s instructions to install it.

Step Two:

Open Paint.net on your computer and create a new document

Create your own blog design for free

I recommend a narrow header for three reasons:

  • If the header is too tall it will be the only thing visible when your page first loads. Imagine going Old Navy’s website and your entire screen is filled with their logo. 
  • A smaller logo will take less time to load. Nobody wants to hang around a website waiting for the page to load, only to find that what you went there to view (i.e. content) isn’t even visible when the page first loads!
  •  Mobile viewers will have an easier time viewing your logo if it isn’t too tall.

Step 3:

Before you begin playing around with fonts and colors, be sure to add a new layer to your document. Never add design elements to your background layer. Ever.

Using Layers in paint net

If I know I’m going to be working with a lot of layers I will take time to rename each layer as I create it. If it’s only a few layers I skip that step and move on to…

Step Four: (optional)

If you selected a color palette on Design Seeds you can use Paint.net to pick up those colors.

On Design Seed’s website, right click on the image of your choice and select “copy image.”

Create a new document in Paint.net and paste the Design Seeds image.

Using the color picker, pick up the color you wish to use.

Free Blog Designthis color palette available here

Step Five:

Now you’re ready to get started playing around with fonts. Just so you know, if you install a new font while Paint.net is open, there’s no need to close the program and reopen it, it will automatically update the program. Aimee has a great tip about pairing fonts here.

Free Fonts

century gothic | learning curve | little days |amerytype bold |halo handletter | frenchy | champagne & limousines |ck cursive | lavendaria | sudestada

 

Creating a Custom Blog Logofor this example I used frenchy + learning curve

Step Six:

It’s time to save your new logo! Before you do, delete the white background layer so that you have a transparent logo design. You may not need it in the future, but just in case you do need it you may as well save it now. Then save your image as a .png file.

Creating a Transparent background Header in blogger

And you’ve just created your own custom, font-only logo! Next week I’ll show you how to install it on your new blog!

Resources + Engange

Gimp.org

Paint.net

PicMonkey

5 Easy ways to Create a Custom Logo

Making an Easy Custom Header with PicMonkey

Font inspiration on Pinterest

What is your favorite font? | Have you ever used image editing software? Which ones? | What is your biggest challenge in creating your own logo?

Influence Network Class//A Recap

Technical issues are fun, aren’t they?

Thankfully grace reigns in the Influence Network. The class participants were incredibly gracious and patient, and they didn’t seem to mind that the video didn’t work.

Although the video did work long enough for them to see my red lips. My choice of lipstick was quite a hot topic!

Red Lipstick Revlon

 Not only did I get tons of compliments {thanks ladies!} I was also asked to share what brand/color I was wearing. You know I aim to please, right?

Revlon Cherry Blossom LipstickRevlon Super Lustrous in Cherry Blossom //You’re welcome.

In spite of the technical difficulties, I think the class went fairly well. The class, in it’s entirety, will be available in the Influence Network Shop soon, so if you missed it you can get access all the information there.

For those of you who could not attend the class, here’s a little something to help you get started tracking your blog statistics and and site data:

Month to Month Tracking Blog Statistics Jan-June
download the Month to Month Blog Stats Tracking form here (two pages) 

There were some great questions (aside from the color of my lipstick!) and I’ll be addressing those in upcoming tutorials.

So here’s my question for you: What’s your biggest challenge in analytics\\motivation\\strategy\\life when it comes to tracking your blog statistics? I struggle daily with balancing how important, and yet how unimportant numberes are. I try to maintain an appropriate balance, but it is hard!

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More in this series:

How to Grow Your Blog
Understanding SEO
Influential Women
Blogging Goals

how-to-overcome-writers-block

How to Overcome Writer’s Block

I sit at my computer, fingers at the ready, a cup of mojo – liquid fuel – beside me, and the glow of a computer screen shining back at me. There are words in my head. Words in my heart. And the screen in front of me is blank, just waiting for the click, click, click of the keyboard to fill an empty screen with something beautiful, like brush strokes on an empty canvas.

But sometimes words fail.

And it is in those moments of quiet – quiet wrestling for the right words, quiet wondering why I can’t find the right words, quiet frustration over the wrestling and the wondering – I find myself wondering how to overcome writer’s block.

After three days of worrying, wading through frustration and a little bit of anxiety, I finally decided to be proactive in finding a way to overcome writer’s block.

how-to-overcome-writers-block

1. Step away from writing.

I am learning to embrace those days when words don’t come. As a blogger, I feel a deep self-imposed pressure to post every day, which often results in wondering how in the world I’m going to come up with enough content to share with you. When the words don’t come, and I’m facing that question of how to overcome writer’s block, stepping away from writing and allowing myself to be distracted helps me refocus and think about something besides writing. And in those moments that seem so separate from writing, my mind comes alive with inspiration for another day. Words and topics and dreams to share with you…someday.

2. Read past favorites.

Reading some of my favorite blog posts helps me refocus. When I look back and read my posts about Connections NOT Numbers, I remember that it’s not about pageviews and retweets. It’s about being authentic so that you will want to be a part of the Royal Daughter community.

Reading my posts about Winning and Losing and How to GrowYour Blog I remember that I’d rather be committed to posting quality content instead of giving into the temptation to post “fluff” posts just so I can check something off of my to-do list.

When I read my thoughts On My Space or when I first shared My Story about infertility I realize that ultimately I am writing a unique, grace-filled story that only I can write. So when words don’t come, that’s okay because the story is being written.

3.  Create something.

I’m really not a creative. I’m not an artist. I’m the type of person that creates something with blood, sweat, and tears. And I don’t mean happy tears. Growing up I’d have never guessed that I’d find a sweet solace in creating in the kitchen. Quite honestly a year ago I’d have never guessed that I’d enjoy creating in the kitchen. But now that we’re immersed in a gluten-free diet, I often enjoy the challenge of recreating our favorite meals with a gluten-free spin.

Allowing my creative juices to flow outside of writing somehow recharges me so that the next time I sit down at the computer I feel a renewed sense of creative vitality.

4. Unplug.

I spent most of Saturday, Sunday, and Monday unplugged from the internet. Sure, I checked facebook and twitter every now and then. But for the most part I insulated myself from social media + blogging. I was intentional not to read other blog posts. Why? Because I did not want to be tempted to feel the “pressure to perform” by comparing myself (i.e. lack of blogging) to all of the other beautifully written blog posts that I knew would be shared via social media.

Being unplugged from social media also allowed me to simply live. To enjoy the beautiful weather we’re having. To cuddle my husband (and enjoy a very spontaneous date night), to keep my house relatively clean. To be present and intentional in my fellowship with the Lord. It wasn’t a completely internet-free weekend, but it was refreshing.

5. Revisit your passions.

Over the past few days I spent several hours thinking about and planning for the future of A Royal Daughter. I spent time writing out a handful of topics about which I am very passionate, then I narrowed those down into themes and planned out how I can share those in an inspiring, life-giving way here on my blog. Revisiting my passions helped me narrow my focus so that I am able to filter out those topic ideas which do not fit with my blog’s vision or the direction in which my blog is headed.

I also spent time praying for my blog, asking for wisdom and direction and blessing for A Royal Daughter.

What do you do when you’re faced with the challenge of how to overcome writer’s block? Some of you chimed in on facebook with great ideas and sweet encouragement. What about you? Do you feel the pressure to perform as a blogger? How do you overcome it? How do you overcome writer’s block?

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Authors, Share Your Book with Millions of Readers

How to Verify Pinterest - Blogger

How to Verify Your Pinterest Account

Last fall Pinterest launched a new profile feature: verifying your pinterest account. Today I’m going to show you How to Verify Your Pinterest Account. I’ll walk you through verifying your Pinterest account for those of you who use Blogger, then I’ll show you WordPress users how to do it.

But first, why should you verify your pinterest account?

Verifying your Pinterest account allows your website url to be visible right there on your profile page, similar to your Twitter or Facebook page. This means that when someone happens across your Pinterest profile they’ll see your  blog or website name right there next to your picture. And that’s a super good thing for social networking + continuity in branding.

How to Verify Your Pinterest Account – Blogger

How to Verify Pinterest - Blogger

Since you’re going to be editing your blog’s HTML, please take take time to Backup Your Blog.

(Special thanks to my bloggy BFF, Tricia, for letting me use her Pinterest account to show you how to verify your pinterest account.)

1. Log into your Pinterest account and select settings.

How to Verify Pinterest in Blogger

2. Under website add your website or blog url and select verify.

How to Verify Pinterest on blogger

3.  Select verify with meta tag and copy provided code. That code is specialized to your Pinterest account.

How to Verify Pinterest on Blogger blog

4. Log in to your Blogger dashboard, select template and then select edit html. You will be given a warning about altering the HTML code, go ahead and select okay. 

How to verify Pinterest in Blogger blog

5. Using ctrl f, search the following tag: <head>, and paste the customized meta tag code below <head>. Don’t forget to save your changes!

How to Verify Pinterest on blogspot

6. Go back to your Pinterest account, select settings, and the select click here to verify.

How to verify pinterest in blogspot

7. Do a little happy dance because you just did a little HTML coding in six easy steps!

How to Verify Pinterest Blogger

How to Verify Your Pinterest Account – WordPress

How to Verify Pinterest - WordPress

1. Log in to Pinterest account. (Before your account is verified you can see that your website is designated by the world image.) Select settings.

How to Verify Pinterest on WordPress Blog

2. Basically repeat the instructions listed in Step 2 above, except be sure to  select download the HTML verification file. This file will be customized to your Pinterest account.

3. Log in to your hosting site. I use Bluehost, and highly recommend them.

How to Verify Pinterest in WordPress

4. On your Cpanel (control panel) select File Manager

How to Verify Pinterest Account on WordPress

5. Under public_html select upload.

How to Verify Pinterest in WordPress Blog6. Select Choose File, then select the saved file that you just downloaded from Pinterest.

How to Verify Pinterest WordPress7. The file manager will prompt you to choose from four different options to upload, select web root.

HOw to verify Pinterest on a WordPress Blog

8. Head on over back to Pinterest and under settings select click here to complete the process.

How to Verify Pinterest WordPress Blog

9. Do a little happy dance because YOU (yes you!) just did some super minor, but very important editing to you WordPress coding. You rock.

How to Verify Pinterest WordPress1

I hope this was helpful for you. If it was, please let me know!

More in this series:

How to Backup Your Blog
How to Name Pictures for Better SEO
Blogger vs WordPress: Understanding SEO
How to Add a Pin It Button to Your Blog Posts.

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