Polish your post and
Can you believe you made it to Day #6?! It's almost time to publish the post you've been working on for the last week.
But before we do that, I want to make sure you're all set up, and you don't have any regrets after you've pushed "Publish".
Checklist: What you need to do BEFORE you publish your blog post
✅ Your canonical tag — Your canonical tag tells Google who the original source of a piece of content is. Especially if you want to syndicate content on other platforms like ThePracticalDev or Medium, you NEED to get this set up. You don't want them to outrank you in search, when your actual blog is where you collect email subscribers. It takes two minutes to set up for a developer, so learn about the canonical tag here.
✅ Google Analytics — I know not everyone loves Google Analytics, but it is a really powerful tool to understand better which content is popular and what distribution channels are working. You can choose a different Analytics tool, I won't judge. But get analytics set up because it can motivate you to keep going.
✅ Google Search Console — What you might not know is that Google Analytics does NOT tell you which search queries people type in Google that lead to your blog. Google Search Console does that (and much more). Do not wait, set up Google Search Console ASAP. As far as I know, you do not need to use Google Analytics in order to use Search Console.
✅ Your email list — Make sure your email list is set up and you have a form embedded on your blog post. Ideally include the form at least once BEFORE the end, and at the end. A good spot is to place it after you think someone has gotten value from the content. Again, here's my link to get set up on ConvertKit: https://bit.ly/bfd-convertkit
✅ Spellcheck and grammar check! — For the few vim-users in the list, you can use :set spell to run the spellchecker. For everyone else, I'm sure there is a VS Code plugin for that, or you can paste your content into a Google Doc and use Grammarly.
✅ Revisit your title again — Make sure the title is excellent! Feel free to ask me for feedback if you're not sure or feel like you're out of ideas (just hit "Reply" on this email). The title can really be make-or-break for an article.
✅ Ask a friend for feedback — I always ask for feedback before sharing content on my personal blog. Not just to catch errors, but to make sure my arguments sound coherent and don't have confusing wording left over.
Lastly, I always recommend "sleeping on" a piece of content before publishing. It can be so easy to rush through it and miss mistakes, points of clarification, or think of that killer title…afterwards.
So do that polishing, ask a trusted friend for feedback, and really ruminate on your title
Tomorrow, we go to prod.
P.S. Please send me a link to your drafts! I'd love to read them. Just hit "Reply" to this email and share the link and whatever's on your mind.