You probably ended up here either because you spend too much time writing blog posts (and feel overwhelmed) or because you would like to save as much time as possible while still not sacrificing the quality of the content. And I get that.
I know, writing for a blog – and doing it very often like 3 times a week – is though itself. I’ve been there. And I guess you’re also pretty busy. Maybe you have another job, or you go to college, or you have kids. We all have our own stuff to do.
And I think that creating good content doesn’t necessarily mean spending a lot of time doing so. The time spent creating is not always directly proportional to the quality of the content. Planning can have a bigger impact than you might think.
Since the very first moment I created – and started using – this step-by-step guide (and checklist), my productivity skyrocketed by 500%! And I’ve also been able to experience super productive weeks where I wrote 10 blog posts in advance for the weeks to come.
(I didn’t even think it was possible to do so!)
This is why I decided to write a very step-by-step complete guide on how to write – and edit and publish – a blog post in 1 hour only. Just think of it for a moment. In only three hours per week, you’ll have published 3 blog posts. Which is great, btw. Be proud of yourself if you do so.
I don’t want to bore you any longer with this intro, so let’s dive right into the hot part!
Here is your step-by-step guide on how to write, edit and publish a blog post in 1 hour only (Yes, SEO included)!
FIRST STEP: WRITING [ ESTIMATED TIME: 30 M]
- GET INSPIRED
And if you don’t have one, why you haven’t searched for it yet? What are you waiting for? Hurry up, go on Pinterest and find a blog for your niche that inspires you. You can do this basically every time you need ideas to write blog posts.
I suggest separating this first phase from the actual writing part and doing it a few days before – or every time you have 5 minutes of free time.
- 25 M FREE WRITING
This doesn’t always come easy at first, but will definitely change the way you look at writing (if you want to deepen this technique, read “How to write every day” )
You just basically set a timer and write whatever comes to your mind for 25 minutes. This will change your life, I swear.
You don’t have to care about the grammar errors or the length of the phrase, or the number of adverbs in each paragraph. You’re gonna worry about those during the editing part, but for now, just write. Even if it sucks. Keep going.
This is the real challenge: accepting the “wrong” in your writing. We sometimes want it to come out all perfect the first time. But that’s just insane. It’s just not how it works.
The ultimate goal of all this is to “put it all out” in the least amount of time possible.
Do NOT start thinking:
“What a dumb thing I just wrote!”
Keep writing and something good will come. Think of it as some type of stream of consciousness with a theme.
BONUS TIP 1: Since I tend to “overwrite” a section of the blog post over the other I set some “mini” timers for each section so I can keep myself on track. Also, I suggest you increase your typing speed using some tools, like Typing Master or Key hero.
BONUS TIP 2: If you’re planning on writing more than one blog post on the same topic, write them during the same day. This will not just save you time during the research, but will also make sure your focus lasts longer since your brain doesn’t have to spend energies on switching from one topic to another.
Related post: Stop procrastinating now! 7 ideas
An ideal blog post structure should be something like:
- Introduction to the blog topic
What does your audience know about this topic? What will they know after reading this blog post? You can also talk about yourself and your own experiences here. Sometimes anecdotes and fun facts are what keeps the reader interested.
- The actual content
It depends on the type of blog post you’re writing. Just keep your content organized and visually appealing. Divide it into sections and use gifs or images to keep your text blocks split. Your readers can get discouraged after seeing a full, compact block of text and might not even bother reading.
- Conclusion (optional)
I don’t always write a conclusion for my blog posts. My general rule is: if I have to force it, I don’t write it. It’s just not the most necessary part of the article.
- DISCUSSION PROMPT
This part consists of some questions you ask your audience that are somehow relevant to what you’ve been writing about. You can skip the conclusion, but never and I repeat NEVER skip the discussion prompt. This is what really keeps your audience engaged, creating a deeper connection between the two parts. I like thinking that a blog post is something really close to a conversation: you’re writing because you’re expecting some kind of reply from the other side. You’re talking to real people with real problems, and you want to be as useful as possible for them, so NEVER skip on this part.
LAST TIP: I don’t want to tell you how much you should write because it really depends on your writing style. You might feel more comfortable writing 3000 words or 500. It’s really up to you, there’s no one-size-fits-all.
Speaking from my experience, I tend to write A LOT during my brainstorming phase, while being more strict during the editing phase. I think you just need to find your balance, and this is something that comes with “doing” more than with “planning”. So just go ahead and start trying!
EDITING [ESTIMATED TIME: 15 M]
To be honest, I’m still trying to improve the length of my editing process. And not because writing and publish a full blog post in 1 hour isn’t fast enough for me – actually it saved me sooo much time I couldn’t even count it – but because I tend to be a perfectionist, and this involved being too hard with myself.
But anyway, a great tip I could give you for the editing process – and this is a life-changing one is to use both an automatic spell and readability checks. Since I started using Grammarly(for my grammar) and Hemingway Editor (for the readability), I found peace of mind. I think they both have a paid version, but even just the free ones work GREAT for me. These two alone saved me tons of hours reading and rereading millions of times my blog posts – as I said, I tend to be too much of a perfectionist!
- CHOOSE A GREAT TITLE
Ok, maybe this is just me, but I choose the title of the article as my last editing step. I don’t know, it just works easier for me, because I know exactly what I wrote in the blog post (I tend to constantly change the theme of my blog posts, which is one of my worst perfectionist habits). Many blogging posts I read when I was starting blogging suggested to choose it at the beginning, even before starting to write, and that’s what I used to do, just to see how much it didn’t work for me.
I think in the end you just need to try and see what works best for YOU.
With that being said, my favorite tool to write the best headline for my blog posts is Coschedule.
SEO [ESTIMATED TIME: 10 M]
- FORMAT TEXT
This phase basically consists of curating the font and the text structure of the blog post. Again, try to make it look as appealing as you can. This process should take no more than 5 minutes.
- TAGS + CATEGORIES
I recommend not using more than 4 tags per blog posts. They don’t really have much SEO relevance, their main goal is to help you keep topics organized and easy to find on your blog. Then decide what’s the category of the blog post. And that’s it.
- ADD DEEP LINKS TO RELEVANT PAST POSTS + AFFILIATE LINKS (AND AFFILIATE DISCLAIMER!)
- MAKE SURE IT’S SEO FRIENDLY
This part includes adding a post meta description, good keywords and so on.
You can set all that – and much more – simply using the Yoast plugin on WordPress.
- CHOOSE IMAGES/GIFS (+ FEATURED IMAGE)
Unless you take the pictures you post on your blog, they need to be copyright-free (to avoid legal problems). There are many websites where you can buy them, but there are also some where you can find copyright-free pictures for no cost at all – and no attribution is required!
- IMAGE OPTIMIZATION WITH TINYPNG
Before uploading your images to WordPress, make sure they’re optimized. TinyPNG reduces your images size so that your website runs more smoothly.
This will ensure your website doesn’t collapse in the future for the excessive amount of content.
- ADD ALT TEXT + DESCRIPTION + CAPTION TO THE IMAGES AND UPLOAD THEM TO YOUR BLOG POST
Adding an alt text and a description to your blog posts’ images means making your images easier to find on Pinterest (and you definitely want to be found, don’t you?).
So this is a highly suggested step.
HIT PUBLISH/SCHEDULE [APPROXIMATED TIME: 5 M]
Ok, now you’re done. The hard part is done. The very last step is to decide whether you want to schedule your blog post or post it right away. And that’s it.
Congratulations!!! Your content is officially out there in the wild blogging world!
You just made it! You wrote and published an entire blog post in only 1 hour!
Please take a moment to celebrate yourself. You deserve it!
How much does it take you on average to write a good blog post? Did you find this system – and checklist – useful or not? Let me know your blogging experiences in the comments section below!