Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Work Your Blog Wednesday: User-Friendly Labels

Today's tutorial is super simple-- no code needed! It's something I wish I had spent more time working on as a new blogger. Using specific, consistent labels is a great way to help readers navigate your blog. I actually think the label widget is much more important than the archive widget most of us use already.

Here's why. Take a look up at the top of my page underneath my header. Do you see my "Seasonal" page? I've spent some time working with the labels on my blog to make them align with the seasons. Now readers can easily look for ideas by topic, like Back to School which is hot right now.

As I was doing this, I found that I had several labels for the same top. For example, I had "reading" and "reading workshop" for the same type of posts. This is where I wished I had been more consistent as a new blogger by deciding exactly what my important labels would be and then using them consistently. Going back to clean them up wasn't difficult, but it was time-consuming.

Once you've decided on your labels, you can use Blogger's simple "page" widget to link up the most common/popular topics under your header by label. The rest of your labels can go in your sidebar, near your blog archive. Here's another tip you might not realize though... you can customize which labels show up. I use a lot of labels for key word searches, but I don't need ALL of those cluttering up my sidebar. So, I went into my labels widget and selected my more common labels for my sidebar. Just click on your labels wrench/edit gadget and look for "selected labels" under your title.

Once you click "edit" you can check off the labels you want to actually show on your blog. The other labels you don't select won't disappear, they'll just be hidden from the sidebar.

You can periodically go back and update your labels as the content of your blog grows. I had to go back and add "Work Your Blog Wednesday" into my sidebar. 

Summer is winding down, but I still have a few more tips in store for you. Until then, you can visit my You Tube channel for several more blogger tutorials.

I also have a pin board with tips, tutorials, and resources just for teacher bloggers and sellers.

If you're looking for a complete blog design, I do that too over at Design by Christi.

Is there something you'd like to see on an upcoming Work Your Blog Wednesday? Do you have a question about today's tutorial? If so, you can leave it in the comments here. I won't be answering them by email this week. Thanks!



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8 comments:

  1. Great blogger information! Love this! I need to do more with labels... I'm going to bookmark this post so I don't forget your tips! :)

    ~Leslie
    http://thetallytales.blogspot.com

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  2. Your Wednesdays are always very helpful. Thank you.
    -Lisa
    Grade 4 Buzz

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  3. Thanks for this! I've been meaning to go through and weed out some of my tabs, but I know it's going to be a monster project... this will be a way to clean up my sidebar without having to go back and retag every post right now! Woohoo! :)

    Jenny
    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

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  4. Ugh, I knew those were for something! I don't think I created one tag out of my 70 posts...lol I have a lot to do now! Thanks for the tutorial!
    Theresa
    Pinkadots Elementary

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  5. I always did the labels since I had no idea that you could search by archive. Luckily, I'm pretty OCD, so my labeling was consistent. Moved some of my more popular ones to their own pages. Thanks for the tip!

    Diane
    Fifth in the Middle

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  6. Thank you for the amazing blog help! I'm new to this and I've used your blog over and over for assistance!
    You are awesome!
    gretchen @ sweetsweetsecondgrade.blogspot.com

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  7. Thanks for the great tip! As someone who is just really starting to blog more consistently this is a great tip!

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  8. Thank you! Great tip, as usual! I went back and tried to get rid of some of my superfluous labels about a month ago, but I didn't know all this! :)

    -Gayla
    Teach On.

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