said 8 months, 1 week ago:
Thanks @ahmedsafwan for submitting your blog http://tostartblogging.com for review on SME. I hope you find my various notes helpful!
One of the top tips for making money with a blog is building a list, and it looks like you have that goal front and center on your home page. I bet it is converting well!
The logo seems like its three seperate pieces. I actually just like the To Start Blogging without the T or the checkbox line, but that’s just personal opinion. It seems to conflict with the large clean header of the mailing list.
As far as colors go, I think you might want to consider changing the color of the active links. My eyesight is a bit strained after spending a day on the computer, and the green background with white text is harder to read. And there are a few spots where the text is still black for some reason, so it makes it nearly impossible.
On the Hire Me page, I feel like the font has changed – the text on the blog posts is much easier to read and is spaced better than on the Hire Me page. There doesn’t seem to be any spacing between paragraphcs under the Ghostwriting Services but there is under Other Writing Services. This is where a good majority of your income will come from, so I would definitely get that evened out. Also, if you shoot me an email, there are a few parts I’d like to edit in the text here that may help.
There is a little popup box in the bottom left that comes up with Your HTML Content goes here. Not sure if you were installing a new plugin while I was browsing, but if not, it may need a setting or two adjusted.
Lastly, the opt-in box on your eBook page has a lot of blank space between the text and the form. I think an image might not be dispalying correctly. On a conversion note, I would move the thank you section below the opt-in box. While I love seeing my link up there, that section might distract someone to leave your site before they opt-in. I definitely appreciate the mention though!
Socailly, I like what I see. You’re using the offical follow buttons / boxes on your sidebar and you have social sharing buttons at the top of the posts. The retweet button at the top is using your username in the tweet, but the one at the bottom isn’t – not sure if that is solveable or not, but if you can get it to include your username in the tweets, that woudl be good. Or just use the same set of buttons at the top and the bottom.
Looks like you have the SEO Scribe plugin working for your homepage and blog posts. Definitely apply a strong SEO title and meta description for your Hire Me page so it can come up in search better. Maybe include some keywords like freelance writer, ghostwriter, etc. in the SEO details for that page.
Love the length of your blog post content! It’s always best to have less frequent but quality content vs. more frequent but less quality. Definitely keep that up!
Notes from the Audience
Now I invite everyone here on the SME forums to add your suggestions (or feel free to agree / disagree with mine). Please add constructive feedback and suggestions. This series is to help people improve their blogs, not to have their blogs roasted Comedy Central style.