A successful blogger is always looking at other blogs to decide which blogs are worth linking to and just to get new ideas.
This second checklist: Checklist for Linking to Quality Blogs serves both of those purposes. It differs from the original Blog Review Checklist in the point of view and in the way the questions are worded. The values in this checklist are approached from a readers’ point of view. I hope you find it helpful for defining quality blogs around the Internet.
1. Audience: What words would you use to describe the blog? What do you find most engaging about this site?
2. Purpose: What is the purpose of this blog? Is the purpose stated plainly where you can see it? How well does the blog meet that purpose?
3. Content: How well does the content support the purpose? Is the content quality, relevant, readable, interesting, accurate, entertaining, and appropriate for the audience?
4. Design: How well does the look of the blog communicate the kind of blog it is? Is navigation easy and intuitive? Do items flow naturally from the first to the next? Do the color palette, image, and type choices support the content or call attention away from it?
5. Posts: Are the posts on a consistent schedule? Do they offer variety and interest within the blog’s purpose and theme?
6. Comments: Does the blog writer read and respond to comments to form a sense of community? Do you get a sense of community at this blog?
7. Technical Issues: Did the blog load fast in your browser? Was the experience more confusing or fun?
8. Writing: Is the writing clear and respectful of readers? Does the writing voice let readers know who the writer really is? Is the blog essentially free of errors in grammar, usage, spelling, and punctuation?
9. Organization: Are there categories to draw you into the backlist? Is there an archive feature of “Golden Oldie”? that you would have interest in exploring? Are the Categories named things that you can understand?
10. Marketing: How would you promote this blog, if it were yours?
11. Persuading the Writer: If you are thinking of asking to link with this blog, what do you know about the blogger? What does your content bring that will add value to this blog? How might you persuade the blogger that your blog will enhance his or her readers’ experience? Find three specific links that show how your quality content ties relevantly to this blog’s content. Use this information to write a compelling argument for making a link.
Do you go through this list with every blog that you visit? Of course not. Use this list when you’re on reconnaissance, when you’re looking for quality homes for your links inside your niche or creative ideas outside your niche.
Follow this checklist with sincerity and you’ll not only get great links and ideas, your reputation will grow to be one of someone who cares about quality and long-lasting relationships.
–ME “Liz” Strauss