How to Holiday-Proof Your Blog
We all need to take a break every once in a while. However, for bloggers the holiday season can create a dilemma.
Blogs require maintenance, interaction and regular updates to prevent things from getting static – so leaving them hanging for a number of weeks is enough to get many us feeling sweaty.
So, how can you holiday proof your blog when you jet off? There are a number of options ranging from completely taking a break to posting regularly while you’re away. We consider the pros and cons of each and throw in some extra tips for good measure (because we’re nice like that).
Take a Break
I can feel your open-mouthed horror at this option – but taking a few weeks holiday from blogging isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Get a fresh perspective – taking a blogging holiday can be the perfect chance to get some distance, relax and come back with a fresh perspective. We’ve all experienced writers block and the struggle to come up with regular new posts – having some time off can re-inspire you until you’re filled to bursting with amazing ideas.
Quality not quantity – if you schedule posts for while you’re away, you run the risk that they will no longer be relevant by the time they go up – particularly if the subject you blog about is fast-moving. It will also limit what you can write about, counting out news pieces or commentary.
Loss of engagement – taking a break means that your blog will have a tumble weed blowing across it, and you won’t be able to respond to comments or get involved in discussions in your sphere of interest. This may mean that you won’t gain as many readers during the period as you would have otherwise and some readers (who can’t have been that interested anyway) may wander off to pastures new. In general though, a few weeks away shouldn’t make a huge difference.
Extra tip – Make sure you post a message on your blog letting your readers know that you’re taking a short break and when you’ll be back. If you regularly receive emails from readers, an automatic ‘out of office’ reply is also a good idea.
Scheduling content is a good option if you want to know that your blog is merrily ticking over, whilst still being able to relax and enjoy your holiday.
Source guest posts – if you don’t have time to write extra posts before you leave, sourcing guest posts to schedule can be a good option. Try reaching out to bloggers in your niche who you’ve previously connected with, or who’s writing style you particularly like. Many bloggers accept guest posts from other bloggers and, if it’s done well, it’s a great way to build connections.
Produce extra content – if you don’t like the idea of accepting guest posts and have the time in the run up to your holiday, plan and write some extra content to schedule while you’re away.
Schedule your posts to be published – WordPress and Blogger both have built in features which allow you to schedule posts in advance, so that they’ll automatically be published while you’re away.
Regular updates – your blog will be updated while you’re on holiday, giving your readers plenty to keep them busy until you get back.
Content may not be as relevant – as previously mentioned, the downside of scheduling content is that it may not be as relevant and on topic.
Extra tip – services like IFTT (If This Then That) can allow you to continue to promote your posts via social media. You can set it so that if a post goes live then a link is automatically posted to Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest, for example.
Blogging While You’re Away
If you’re a blog-o-holic who can’t face being parted from your blog while on holiday then you can continue to create posts whilst you’re away.
Content ideas – a holiday is the perfect source of fantastic content ideas – you can blog about the exciting things you’re getting up to day-to-day and post your holiday snaps.
Keep your blog fresh – this method will keep your blog updated with fresh, relevant and timely content.
Stop you relaxing – blogging on-the-go could stop you from relaxing and taking a well-earned break.
You’ll add to your packing – depending on your destination, taking a laptop or tablet with you could be heavy and impractical.
Extra tip – decide on a specific time frame to blog, such as 15 minutes at the end of each day. This will stop blogging from taking over and preventing you from getting the most out of your holiday.
Do you have any more tips on how to holiday proof your blog? Let us know in the comments.
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