How to get blogging right
We all have opinions. There’s a pretty well-known saying alluding to that fact. Blogging has made it easier than ever before to share your opinions, thoughts, and ideas in the digital sphere – although it doesn’t necessarily mean anyone is listening.
There are approximately 600 million blogs online today. Some have become people’s livings, enabling them to hand out advice on and insight into a huge range of topics. Starting your own blog doesn’t have to be a commercial pursuit, but the minimum you’re looking for is unique impressions and active engagement from your audience. But getting a blog right is more than just producing great content. In fact, that part should be the most fun, since your passions and interests can be poured into your writing and media. Getting blogging right is tied far more to how you present, where you present, and what you’re doing to help people see your work.
Home is where the site is
Your website, it goes without saying, is effectively the vehicle for your blog. A poorly-presented website means more than simply not being aesthetically pleasing. It can mean being difficult to navigate or hard to find. A blog hosting should offer you decent customer service and fair pricing. From there, you’ll want to find an intuitive website builder to create a stellar blogging homepage and wider site. There are some free tools and some premium site-builders available. You don’t have to spend money, but don’t be afraid to invest a little resource into creating a really striking and useful website. The care and attention you’re going to put into the content you produce deserves a home that really allows it to speak for itself, and where it won’t lose impact on a poor or unenjoyable user experience.
Visibility is key
Visibility has two meanings to a blogger. Firstly, there’s the external visibility of your blog to your audience. We’ll start there. Being featured and providing backlinks to your blog will do your ranking a world of good, but it’s the plugins that truly get you where you want to go. Installing Google Analytics is really easy to do and offers you a huge amount of insight into the traffic on your site. Think of it as showing you the fish you’re catching at any one time, and you’ll be able to build smarter audience profiles from there. When are people visiting? How are they arriving on your site? Is there a certain page or area that sees the most drop-off? GA will help you tighten up your blog in ways you simply can’t see without it.
SEO search tools are next on your list. SEO (search engine optimization) is how you’ll be able to make your site more likely to be found in searches. Try and look for tools that allow you to do research into keywords on certain subjects and analyze your site for gaps in your SEO strategy that you could easily fill. With this done, you’ll be able to not only understand what ‘fish’ you’re catching, but what they look like, and how to catch the mass of others you aren’t managing to catch just yet!
Get to work
We’ve brushed over the actual production of content thus far. While it should be fun, it might be a little naive to say it’s easy as a result. Being original and adding value are difficult things to do for anyone new to blogging. Some people take some time to find their niche and ideal audience. Don’t be afraid of that creative process. Take some time to really get a feel for what you want to write and the sorts of things you’d like to read. A few practice blogs, shared with family or friends might be a little more intimidating than publishing to an anonymous internet audience, but it’s a good way to get more honest feedback on messages that might seem obvious to you, but less so to others. In addition, broaden your horizons beyond just the words.
Pictures, videos, and graphics, so long as you’re able to republish them without breaching any copyright, will add some variation and detail to your work. It’s a proven statistic that moving imagery performs far better than plain, old words on social media – if it’s something that you feel makes sense to include, again, don’t be afraid to experiment with a few different formats as you learn.
People get a huge amount of enjoyment out of blogging. For some, it’s an income source, others simply are glad to have an outlet. Others might be sharing radical, new ideas about the way the world works, or the things they think could work better. Being a part of that is naturally appealing to many of us. Looking at some of the bloggers you respect and how they work will help you in translating your own ideas onto the digital page. Maybe the biggest piece of advice we can give, though, is that the internet is a big place full of billions – literally – of different opinions to yours. It takes guts to be vulnerable and publish your thoughts online, too. For that reason, remember that your blogging journey should always, no matter how popular it might get, be something you enjoy doing and that benefits you. After all, if it isn’t any fun, what’s the point?