The actual “uploading” process is now automated thanks to our online form. However, the format and quality of articles vary widely as content comes in, so there is a need to make the basic structure consistent and coherent or in some cases to request amendments from the author.
Whenever you request a resubmission, delete the article completely.
We also need to add categories, tags, SEO information and a fact-checking file to each. Here are the basic steps to uploading articles so that editors can seamlessly begin working on the more in-depth content editing.
- Login to the blog and navigate to the Drafts category of Posts. Begin with the oldest articles first.
- Ctrl+F / Cmd+F and search the article for instances of the SEO key phrase. If there is clearly not enough, or it hasn’t been specified, this on its own can often be grounds for requesting a resubmission.
- Highlight the fact-checking file and cut it, then scroll to the bottom of the page and paste it into an editorial comment. Make sure there are at least three reputable sources used here.
- Have a very quick scan through the content as you separate out the paragraphs. Is it at least 500 words? Don’t worry about correcting mistakes at this stage, but if there is anything you notice that warrants more work from the author, note it in an email and delete the article.
- Add a title and slug, keeping in mind the SEO key phrase. Add categories (shorter, more general related keywords) and tags (unique phrases specific to the subject, proper nouns, concepts). All tags should be written in title case and the SEO key phrase should be the first tag you add.
- Find a suitable paragraph or sentence that contains the SEO key phrase and captures the key idea of the article, and copy/paste it into the ‘Meta description’. To find this, scroll to the Yoast section of the page and click ‘Edit snippet’. If no existing sentence works, write your own or combine content from the article to make it work. Remember this will appear in Google search results for all time!
- Enter the SEO key phrase into the ‘Focus keyword’ field. Once you’ve done this, the Analysis section will populate with any notifications of missing SEO elements. The overall score in the ‘Publish’ box can either be ‘Good’, or ‘OK’. We don’t aim for perfect scores, but if there three or more ‘Problems’ identified, see what you can do to correct for them.
- Save the article as ‘SEO Complete’.
- Add your name, date and the location (Blog or Mag) to the News Team & Assignment Desk.
Moving to the Magazine
Some articles are more suited to the Magazine than to the Blog. Anything that relates to Congress, from bills to Member spotlights, any first-hand or interview-based articles and any celebrity articles should automatically go to the Magazine.
Otherwise, use your discretion to identify articles that are particularly in-depth on an issue, or especially well-written.
The uploading process is virtually the same, except that you will create a new post and copy/paste the entire content of the blog version. Specify the author using the dropdown menu at the bottom of the page, and then save the article as a draft so that editorial comments become available.