Since I’ve been blogging for over three years, I’ve pretty much seen it all. I’ve seen bloggers come and go and switch their niche. I’ve seen blogs rebrand (myself included) and have learned from a lot of mistakes along the way. I have people ask me questions on how to start a successful blog all of the time, almost daily. So ask and you shall receive! Today, I want to share some of the techniques that have worked for me over the years. Disclaimer: these are things that have worked for me, however I am not guranteeing these are ways to have a successful blog. Just what has worked for me 🙂
Here are what I believe are 6 tips for a successful blog:
1. A custom design. If you’re on a standard WordPress or Blogger template, you need to upgrade. There are a lot of affordable options out there and I’ve always had such a great experience working with blog designers. My go-to girl is Marquis Clarke from Clarke Creative Design, and she has always done a great job bringing my vision to life. If you’re not ready to invest quite yet, check out Etsy or Creative Market. Those require installation and since I’m technologically challenged, those were never an option for me. But if you are, go for it!
2. Read other blogs. Of course writing your own blog is a big part of blogging, but so is supporting other bloggers. Reading other blogs has a few different benefits. 1) You’re supporting your community 2) You’re creating a “tribe” (I’ll get to that later) and 3) You’re getting your name out there. Make an effort to read 10-15 blogs a day and COMMENT on them. Not only will this make the blogger feel good, but they will be able to come back and visit your blog as well.
3. Find your tribe. Since I’ve been blogging for over 3 years, I’ve “met” a ton of bloggers over time. I’ve made some really great friendships that have actually transferred to “real life”. Not only is it great to get to meet other women who you share common interests with, but it’s great to have them by your side in blogland. Collaborations, guest posting, sharing tips and tricks, etc. Once you’ve established a group of friends, it becomes easier to network yourself by helping them do the same. Side note: don’t be cliquey. Of course you’re going to naturally click with some women over others, but if someone comes to you asking for help or advice, be kind. You never know what that person can do for you down the road.
4. Be consistent. I post every weekday, Monday-Friday. My readers know they will always find a new post if they go to my blog M-F. This doesn’t mean you have to do that, but try to be consistent with a schedule. Maybe you post MWF or TR. Or maybe you just post on weekends. Up to you! But if people don’t know when you’re going to post, they won’t know to check. I have a handful of blogs that I read every single day and I know they don’t post on the weekends. Finding a rhythm will not only help your readers know when you’re posting, but it will keep you organized and on a schedule.
5. Provide quality content. No one wants to waste their time reading garbage. If you have nothing to say or it feels forced, don’t write. Blogging is supposed to be fun and trust me, I know that it can sometimes turn more into a job when you’re doing sponsored posts and have deadlines. But only publish content that you would want to read. People will stop visiting your blog if you are just rambling about nothing just for the sheer purpose of having a post up that day.
6. Solve a problem. People look to bloggers because they want an answer. Maybe they want to know how to wear a plaid shirt. Or maybe they want to know they’re not the only mom who loses her mind on a daily basis. Maybe they need a recipe for Christmas dinner or maybe they just want to read because they connect with you as a person. Why do you read blogs? Why do you read the specific blogs you do? Keep that in mind and give your readers what they want!
There’s no rhyme or reason when it comes to blogging. These are just the things that I’ve picked up over the past few years and what have helped me grow along the way. Like I said, I’m still learning something new everyday. If I knew everything there was to know about blogging (which is impossible), it would mean I wasn’t living up to my potential. There is ALWAYS something to learn. Blogging has become mainstream over the past few years and so many people are starting one. But there’s room for everyone, because we’re all different and have something to offer. Just be yourself and stay true to you. The success will come on it’s own 🙂
What have you done while blogging that’s helped you to be successful? What tips do you have?