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Review Submission Checklist

Please review this checklist before submitting articles until you've familiarized yourself with the process. Leaving certain fields blank is not acceptable. If you have any questions, ask prior to submission. All of this info can be found in the pages listed in Information for Members (Required) below.

 

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Submitting Your Review

Categories, Tags, SEO, etc.

Categories
Tags
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Excerpt
Multiple Platforms
After Submission

After typing up your review and adding any images you’d like, there are a few final things that we would like for you to do before submitting your review for approval.  If you’re unable to finish your review in one sitting, you can click on the “Save Draft” button (located in the right sidebar) and pick up right where you left off whenever your schedule permits.  Once you’re ready for us to publish your article, please take the time to follow a few simple steps before clicking “Submit for Approval” or “Save as Pending.”

Feature this Post

Please leave this box unchecked. We will decide which articles are featured and when.

Also, before you begin, take note of the “Feature this Post” check box near the upper right of the page (pictured to the right).  By default, this box is unchecked.  Please do not check this box.  The administrators will determine what posts are featured and when they are featured.

Categories

First, we’d like for you to check mark the categories applicable to your article.  This is mostly used by the administrators to accurately sort and organize reviews.  When writing a game review please select only the platform applicable to your review.  If you’re reviewing a PC game, you only need to check “PC / Mac.”  If reviewing a Super Nintendo game, it is only necessary to check the “SNES” option. See Figure 1.

Submitting Your Review Figure 1 right and wrong

Figure 1

DO NOT SELECT MORE THAN ONE PLATFORM. See Figure 1.

When dealing with the genres, you may check any boxes for genres that you have listed at the beginning of your article.  DO NOT check genres which you have not listed, but feel free to list genres in your header that we don’t have categories for.  We realize that as of yet we do not have every conceivable genre listed, so go ahead and list it so that we can reclassify them at a later date.

When writing a hardware review or other article, you will only need to select “Hardware Reviews” or “List.”  Even if you’re doing a hardware review of, say, the DualShock 3 YOU DO NOT need to check PS3 as well.  I understand that several of you may review hardware and think it’s appropriate to check another box (or a similar situation) but THIS IS INCORRECT. Just the one (1) category check box will do.

You will only need to check the lowest sub-category (see figure 1). For example, if you are reviewing a game for the PlayStation 4, you do not need to check the PS4 box AND the SONY box as PS4 is a sub-category of Sony. So only PS4 needs to be checked.

To summarize, you played a game; it was on a platform; CHECK ONLY THAT PLATFORM (see “multiple platforms” below). You’re reviewing a piece of hardware, CHECK ONLY HARDWARE REVIEWS. And so forth. Some articles may at times contain helpful information that we’d like to showcase, even if it isn’t strictly news. WE will make the distinction to stick it under “news.”

Tags

In the right sidebar below “categories” and above “featured image,” you’ll also notice an option to add “tags.” These tags assist both search engines and site users with finding specific content.  Think about a few things you might type in a search engine if you were searching for a game. Note that people often will misspell the title of game accidentally when they search for something. For example, Mortal Kombat could easily be spelled “Mortal Combat” or “Mortle Kombat,” and if we cover the correct and incorrect spellings, we increase of chances of visibility! Keep in mind that your editor will likely always think up more tag ideas and could send your review back for revision solely to add more tags. Please take the time to cover more bases. Say you are playing Mortal Kombat II for the Sega Genesis, below are some examples for this.

ALWAYS IN LOWERCASE, No matter what:

  • mortal kombat 2
  • mortal kombat ii
  • mk2
  • mkii
  • mk2 genesis
  • mkii genesis
  • mortal kombat sega
  • mortal kombat two
  • mortal kombat review
  • mortal kombat ii review
  • mortal kombat 2 for genesis
  • review of mortal kombat 2
  • mortle kombat 2
  • mortle kombat ii
  • mortal combat 2
  • mortal combat ii

And many more. These are just a few examples. Get creative! What will NOT help are things like “game” and “fighting” and “fun game” and such. These are TOO vague to make us stand out in any search engine. See figure 2.  Furthermore, keep in mind that “tags” should be treated as synonymous with “search terms.”  This is not the are to type any an all words remotely associated with the topic.  For example, the single word “mortal” is not an acceptable tag for Mortal Kombat II.  When typing in tags, ask yourself the question, “would someone looking for a review or information on this game type in this exact combination of words?”  Clearly someone searching for a review of the Genesis version of MK 2 will not simply type “mortal” in a search engine and expect appropriate results.

Figure 2

Figure 2

SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Below the area in which you type your articles, you’ll notice our SEO plugin at work.  By default it will be on the “General” tab, and this area is the only area which you’ll need to add anything.  It isn’t nearly as complicated as it looks and it goes a long way in helping to get our content out there and on search engines.

FOCUS KEYWORD* (see figure 3.1)

For Focus Keyword* all you need to do is type in the name of the game you’re reviewing in all lowercase letters.  Don’t worry about the platform here, just type the name of the game in its most common yet unabbreviated form, typically echoing your title less the dash and platform. The more generic the better, but only to an extent. If you are reviewing Super Mario Bros 3 for the NES, here are examples of good and bad uses:

Good: super mario bros 3

Bad: super mario, mario 3, mario bros, mario games, super mario bros 3 nes, super mario bros 3 review, etc.

The reason these won’t work is due to the fact that it is very unlikely that you typed “mario games” within your article, your title, your URL, your meta description field, and your SEO title field. More on these below, but the idea is to get your keyword to match up within the multiple fields just described. Once you have saved your draft or submitted for approval, you will notice a red, orange, yellow, or green dot in the right sidebar. The idea is to get it into the green.  If it’s graybe sure you’ve saved or submitted the article and refresh.  If the dot is bluethen inappropriate settings have been modified and you should contact an editor or administrator.

Submitting Your Review Figure 1

Figure 3

SEO Title* (see figure 3.2)

In the SEO Title field,* you’ll notice that “- Nerd Bacon Reviews” has already been inserted by default.  In this area, you should type exactly what you’ve used in the title bar – “Game Title – Platform” and follow it with “- Nerd Bacon Reviews.”  Notice that this has recently changed from previous procedure.  Don’t blame us, it happened in a software update! Despite not showing the maximum allowable characters, it is limited. It will warn you if you are over.

Submitting Your Review Figure 1

Figure 3

Meta Description* (see figure 3.3)

We do want a short description typed in the Meta Description box.*  Make sure to include your game title here as well.  Don’t know what to say?  Let’s say I just finished playing Injustice for the PlayStation 4 and gave it a great score, praising it as one of the best fighting games I’d ever played.  Here’s what I might type:

Nerd Bacon co-founder The Cubist touts Injustice: Gods Among Us for the PlayStation 4 (PS4) as one of the greatest fighting games of all time!

A couple of things to remember: always type out the full game name, like how I added “gods among us.”  Mentioning your alias alongside “nerd bacon” helps draw recognition to the site as a whole.  This Meta Description is what will appear below the linked title when your review pops up in a search engine, so be sure to convey as much important information as you can.  You’ve got exactly 156 characters to mention game, platform, Nerd Bacon, and hook readers into reading your review.

*Note that the SEO title field and Meta Description field do not require your letters to be lowercased. ONLY the Focus Keyword should be in all lowercase letters.

Submitting Your Review Figure 1

Figure 3

Excerpt

The excerpt box is used to tell the website what to display when only a portion of the article is shown, most notably in the slideshow on the homepage and in the listing of recent posts that appear underneath it.  As you scroll down beneath the area where you’re typing your article, you should see a box labeled “Excerpt.”  (If you don’t, keep reading.)

Excerpt Box

After scrolling down beneath the editing error, you should see a box like this.

If you see only a bar that reads “Excerpt” but no text area (like the image below), click on the triangle on the far right.

Excerpt Box, Closed

To open the text area, click the triangle circled in blue.

If you don’t see the “Excerpt” box at all, scroll up to the very top of the page and look to the upper right for a tab labeled “Screen Options.”

Screen Options

If an “Excerpt” box isn’t present on your page, locate this tab on the upper right side of the page.

Once you click on “Screen Options,” you’ll see several different checkboxes.  To keep things simple, it’s probably best to leave everything alone except for the box adjacent to “Excerpt.”  Make sure this box is checked!  If the “Excerpt” box doesn’t appear immediately (although it usually will), make sure that your work is saved and reload the page.

Screen Options

Your “Screen Options” will probably contain fewer boxes than this one; just be sure to find “Excerpt” and check the box (circled in blue).

Once you have your excerpt box visible, take a couple of moments to write up a unique and original summary of your review.  Keep in mind that this is what readers viewing the homepage will see both in the slideshow and in the blocks showcasing our most recent publications.  There’s no real limit to how much text you can include, though try to remember this is a summary only.  In a pinch, you can copy the text from your Meta Description, described in the preceding SEO section.

Multiple Platforms

How do I handle a game that has been released on multiple platforms?

I know that the PS3 and Xbox 360 share many of the same titles, but please don’t check both unless you’ve played both and your review reflects any possible differences. Or you can split it into 2 reviews and cross-link them, that’s fine also and is the preferred method. Here at Nerd Bacon, we want to be as accurate as possible; there are entire E-WARS about the performance of the 360 vs PS3 and we would like to embrace these differences. PLEASE ONLY SPECIFY THE PLATFORM FOR WHICH YOU’VE PLAYED THE GAME. There’s no need to list every platform that a game was released for, just list the one YOU played it for, and ONLY check that box. If you’re using an emulator for old games, DO NOT simply say “Genesis and SNES” because sometimes there were HUGE differences between games of the same titles released for these consoles. Where did your ROM come from? The SNES section? Then label it as SNES and mention that you’ve used an emulator.

A good time to categorize a review for more than one platform is if you’re a gamer who has had extensive experience with both versions and would like to point out any differences. In fact, a comparison article detailing the differences of system performance and/or developer competency on two same-named titles would be awesome. A review explicitly stating that it is going to cover multiple versions is fine and welcomed.

After Submission

Finally, when you’ve submitted a review for approval CLICK ON ANOTHER LINK; DO NOT LET YOUR BROWSER IDLE ON YOUR “FINISHED” ARTICLE. Sometimes it gets stuck saying that the author is still editing when I know this can’t be the case; for example once one was labeled as being edited for 27 consecutive hours even after it was submitted for approval. Even if it is submitted for approval but I see that you’re editing, I will NOT publish it. If I access the article while you’re editing it will immediately lock you out and may disregard changes. Of course I have no idea if you really are sitting there for 14 hours or not, so I leave it alone just in case. You are free to go in and make changes to a review you have submitted for approval but has not yet been published, just make sure that there’s no way that your browser thinks you’re on the same page. Click Profile or use the dashboard to visit the site, anything, but GET OFF THAT PAGE BEFORE CLOSING THE WINDOW.

Please be cognizant of all above information and the information contained in all the pages above “Submitting Your Review” in the right sidebar before clicking the “Submit for Approval” button.

If this is your first time, please read through the required reading IN ORDER.

Featured Images Editorial Process

Required Information for Members HUB

  1. Getting Started at Nerd Bacon
  2. Your First Review
  3. Review Content
  4. Formatting Your Review
  5. Rating Games at Nerd Bacon
  6. Featured Images (For Articles)
  7. Submitting Your Review/Article
  8. Editorial Review
  9. Requirements
  10. Author Status
  11. Other Articles
  12. Tech Support and WordPress Issues
  13. Exceptions
  14. Termination Policy and Procedure

Extra Information for Members (Optional)

Review Structure – (What’s in a review?)

Common Mistakes

Tips for Writing Better Reviews

Watermarking Your Original Images

Featured Posts / Homepage Slideshow

Custom Sidebar Menus

Bacon Badges

 

Patrick, aka The Cubist: TheCubist@NerdBacon.com
Owner/Operator

David, aka Nerdberry: Nerdberry@NerdBacon.com
Owner/Operator

 

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