Starting a blog is an exciting journey. You might have ideas about your niche, and you are about to get started on creating your website and choosing a website host. Here are some things to consider as you begin your blogging journey.
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16 things to consider/need when you start Blogging
1. Your patience
When you first start your blog, patience is something that you will definitely need. You may come across other more established blogs that have a lot of engagement and popularity. Also, if that blogger makes their monthly profits public and you see they are doing extremely well, you may feel like you're far behind and then try to rush the process. When you begin blogging, remember to pace yourself and take your time. Rushing can create a lot of frustration. Frustration isn’t something you want on your journey as a blogger.
2. Your creativity
Only you can be you. When you create your website, you want to make sure you are not duplicating someone else’s style. Copying someone’s style and website idea will help the other person and not yourself. If you are looking at another blogger's work. Look for what works and use your creativity to make it better or create something new. Do not copy another blogger's work. That’s a no go.
3. A brand
One of the things that separate us all as bloggers is our brand. Your brand may include a slogan and logo or just a slogan. One thing to keep in mind that some may forget. You brand is not about you. Your brand is about serving and helping and not just about you. If your brand is about targeting a specific problem, don’t forget to provide solutions for that problem.
4. Homepage (Domain)(Host)
Your blog needs a homepage. There are various website hosting platforms like www.godaddy.com, www.wix.com, www.squarespace.com, www.wordpress.com and a few more. You will have to pay for a domain name as well as the ability to host your website on one of the platforms mentioned above. A lot of bloggers use WordPress and Bluehost for their blogs. I preferred wix because of the flexibility I had to change things around on my website. When you are ready to get a website, host and build a homepage, choose a platform that you are comfortable with. Also reach out to other bloggers and get some feedback on the pros and cons.
5. A purpose
You NEED a purpose for your blog. If your blog doesn’t have a purpose and isn’t serving any needs, it will be very difficult for your blog to be successful. Before you create a website make sure that you know the purpose of your blog and who your target audience is.
6. Social Media widgets
Social media is a great way to drive traffic to your blog. Also, if you’re looking to increase your engagement and following on social media, placing social media widgets on your website can help. Pinterest is one of the best gems for bloggers. Facebook makes it easy to share posts and Instagram makes it easy to generate a large following. It is very important to learn how you will use social media to increase your reach.
Offering a freebie is a great way to attract and show appreciation for your subscribers. Make sure that the freebies are actually helpful. One way that you can create a freebie is using creating an eBook. eBooks are a great way to compile information and share it in a downloadable PDF format. Freebies are a great way to keep subscribers engaged.
8. Professional photos
This is more important than you think. Professional photos make your website standout. Taking a picture with a phone and posting it is not the way you want to do it. Trust me on that. The pictures you place on the “About Me” section of your website should be a clear and professional picture of you. If you are using pictures of yourself all over your blog, make sure that those pictures are professional pictures that are sharp and clear.
9. Contact page and Subscription bar
A contact page/section is very important because this is the place where people can go to contact you. Also, when someone finds your page on the internet or even on social media, you want to make sure that you have a place for readers to subscribe. Over time you will be able to build an email list of subscribers and followers that can be very instrumental in marketing your brand/blog 😊.
10. Website Email Address
When you create a blog, I recommend not using a Gmail account to email your subscribers for your blog. Some web hosting platforms have an option for you to create an email address that is linked to your blog. This email address will have an ending that is tied to the name of your blog. For example, if your blog is called Happy Life, your email can be JohnSmith@HappyLife.com instead of JohnSmith@gmail.com. It’s a great way to distinguish yourself and have others take your brand more seriously. *I learned my lesson about using a Gmail email account very quickly. I’ve been told that when you use a gmail or other popular email platform (Yahoo, hotmail, etc.) as your business email, people might think you are spamming them, or your email may go to their junk mail.
11. Call to actions
THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT. If you aren’t actively asking readers to subscribe, they most likely won’t. If you aren’t reminding readers that they can share your post, they probably will not. If you didn’t ask readers to follow you on social media, the readers most likely won’t follow you. If you don’t ask your reader to share and comment on your blog, they may not do it. Call to actions are a great way to engage your audience and make them feel that they are part of the conversation.
12. Email list
Email lists help in so many ways. I am an author so when my books were being published, I made sure to keep my subscribers up to date on my release date. Also, in the future, if there is a course that I would like to share with my subscribers, I can share that information through my email list. Email lists are developed over time and it takes marketing to grow the number of contacts on that list.
SEO is the heartbeat of anything on the internet. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Every platform that has a web address has a unique SEO, and it can take some time to learn and develop. When you understand how SEO works it will make marketing your blog on the web and social media a lot easier.
14. Clarity and conciseness
Your blogs should be clear and concise. Do your best to make sure that your grammar and punctuations are accurate. We are not perfect but making sure that you have complete sentences and good punctuation is important. Also make sure that your topics are relevant and you keep your content focused on the subject matter. If you’re like me and write a lot, sometimes we can go off on a tangent. My writing has gotten better with more experience and by having someone read over my work.
15. Working Links and Security
Having the security feature enabled on your website is very important. You want to make sure that you’re protecting your website data and your hard work. Check with your website host to see what security options they have for your blog. It is extremely important, especially in this day and age of data breaches. When you are using links don’t forget to test them to make sure that they work. It can be frustrating for your readers when they click on the link and it does not work.
16. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is the most popular way to monetize your blog. When I first started, I was very confused about affiliate marketing. I bought a course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing and I learned A LOT. There was information on the do’s and don'ts of affiliate marketing and what to expect when you work with an affiliate program. I highly recommend this course to everyone who is starting out with a blog and also bloggers who are still just placing ads on their blog and haven’t been getting any conversions. Here’s a link to this amazing course. Click Here.
BONUS: Networking and Guest Post
Networking is a great way for you to make friends and learn on your journey as a blogger. Guest posts are a great way to add value to your blog. Guest posts can create a lot of engagement on your blog and help generate awesome conversions. Networking is another thing that I love about being a blogger and writer. There’s so much valuable information to learn.
Thank you for reading my post “Interested in starting a Blog? Here’s 16 things to consider when you get started.” I hope that this list will help you as you start your journey as a blogger. One of the things I struggled with when I started my blog was comparing myself with other bloggers' progress. Comparison is a huge joy killer. Blogging is so much fun when you enjoy the process and watch your growth. What are some questions or concerns that you have about blogging? Where are you in your process? Please feel free and comment below. If you are new to Millennial Oaks, please feel free to subscribe.