Tricks to make Blogging….Better

I’ve been meaning to share these HTML tricks and website shout outs with you for some time:

1.  When I was with Blogger I was able to easily enter links to my sidebar with their HTML wizard.  However, when I moved to WordPress I suddenly had to use real HTML code to link up information I wanted displayed as a widget in my sidebar.  This information can be helpful in Blogger, but is essential to me in WordPress.

Say you have a giveaway coming up and you want to link to your giveaway in your sidebar.  You would like the words “Memory Mixer software and album $75” to be displayed with a link to the giveaway post when they click on the words.   Here’s how you enter the HTML in the text editor:

<a href=”http://sevenclowncircus.com/2010/02/memory-mixer-giveaway-75-00.html“> Memory Mixer software and album $75 </a>
The information in red is the URL of location of the information that  you want linkedThe information in blue is the wording you want displayed.

Make sense?

2.  Another handy dandy trick I learned is how to enter an image link that will open in a new window rather than directing away from the page the houses the link.  Here’s an example:

target=”_blank”><img
border= “0″ src=”http://sevenclowncircus.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/sevenclownbutton.jpg” alt=”Seven Clown Circus” /></a>
It’s a little more confusing than the other two samples, but it does come in handy!

3.  Here’s how to leave a link in a comment with only the highlighted text showing up, NOT the entire URL:

Use this code: <a href=”http://www.sevenclowncircus.com/“>Seven Clown Circus</a>

Look familiar?  Yep, same exact code as the first example.  You’ll want to change the URL and title to reflect the destination you want the link to go to.

4. Have you ever nested?  This kind, I mean?

If you put your HTML code in between those center brackets it’ll center your image.

<center><a href=”page you want to link to“><src=”image you want to link to “/></a></center>

5. Lastly,  a few sites and a plug in that I’m loving:

Bit.ly , ClixTrac and Pretty Link:

The sites are free and will shorten your URL and track the clicks.  ClixTrac does what Bit.ly does, but with more features.  ClixTrac offers a “free banner and link tracking service that allows you to keep track of how many times your advertisements and links are being viewed”.

I usually use Bit.ly for Twitter (I always need  to shorten my URL’s so that I can say more in my Tweet instead of having all the characters allotted in my Tweet used up in a lengthy URL) and ClixTrac for my advertising.

For example, I sell ad space on my blog.  It’s a great way for advertisers to get their name out there, and it’s a great way for me to make a few extra bucks to roll back into my blog for make-overs, giveaways, and the like.  Now I can track exactly how many clicks to an advertisers site originate from my site by using the ClixTrac code to direct viewers to the site rather than the actual URL.  And, I can group the advertisers into a “family” to easily see the combined clicks.

I’m totally excited about this plug in that I just heard about.  It’s called  Pretty Link.   “You can now shorten links using your own domain name (as opposed to using tinyurl.com, bit.ly, or any other link shrinking service)! In addition to creating clean links, Pretty Link tracks each hit on your URL and provides a full, detailed report of where the hit came from, the browser, os and host”.

Thanks to Shauna (Custom Blog Designs by Shauna), Kathy (Mama Kat’s Losin It), Lolli (Better in Bulk), Carissa (Good N Crazy), Beth (The Confused Homemaker), and  Sharon (Good, True and Beautiful) for sharing these tips with me.

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    Good tips! I could have used these when I was struggling to figure out how to link those first weeks. Another good one for shortening urls for Twitter is Prettylink, it’s a Plugin for WordPress & you can track your views. I was having trouble getting Twitterfeed to automatically pull my feed regularly & so I tried this, it’s kinda cool & you can block out crawlers/bots to see how many real views Twitter gives you.

  2. 2

    Liz Burgess says

    Thanks for all the great info. Right now, my head is spinning and I understand about 2% of everything you’ve covered. BUT, I will copy this post and put it in my “Blog Tips for This Dummy” folder for future reference. Thanks for taking the time!

  3. 22

    says

    Good Stuff Angie! One more tip that I was glad to learn…

    If you want to center something (like an image or text in your sidebar) put the code inside (or nested) into these characters…

    XXXXXX

    where the XXX represent your code. So using your example above, it would look like this:

    Memory Mixer software and album $75

    Makes things look prettier!

  4. 41

    says

    Great tips! Okay, now how do I get advertisers to buy some ad space on my bitty littly bloggy so I can use one of these tips???

  5. 60

    says

    You’re too smart for me. You’re too professional for me. Why are we friends? Other than the fact that I hurled myself into your arms the first time we met in person, or the knowledge that I would kill a small dog to have your glorious hair?

    I’m getting kinda personal up in here.
    I just love you. And your really smart, intelligent self.

  6. 76

    says

    Thanks! I was just thinking last night that life would be a whole lot easier if I knew html. I think I’m going to try harder.

  7. 77

    says

    Great tips! A lot of bloggers, myself included are not that familiar with HTML. Thanks for sharing this!

    Also, I would like to thank you for stopping by Healthy Moms and leaving us a comment.

    Have a terrific Tuesday!

  8. 111

    says

    I have mine on my sidebar and it says that the link appears to be broken?
    I am on blogger, is it the same hotmail, an I id it using add a gadget. I don’t know what the heck I am doing wrong;{

  9. 113

    says

    Awesome, I am still on Blogger but these are still helpful because I have issues with Blogger and formatting all the time. Plus it’s always good to know a few tricks. I’ve long wondered how you get a link to be a pop up window. Thanks!

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