This post was adapted from a post on my old blog in 2016.
I’ve been blogging for about a year now, and what a year it’s been! I started off 2017 with a brand new website, the very one you’re reading right now. It was time for a change and time for me to make a larger commitment to blogging. I have compiled some of the things I didn’t know about blogging, and some tips for any new and budding blogger’s out there!
1. There are a lot more blogs out there than I thought!
I knew blogging was a thing, and I had a few blogs I read constantly, but I had no idea just how many people were blogging out there! There are so so many, and I’ve expanded the amount of blogs I actually read by hundreds at this stage. There’s a huge community of blogs out there to explore and I barely knew about it! My most important tip is to read as many of them as you can, there is so much interesting content out there, plus it doesn’t ever hurt to show some love to your fellow bloggers out there!
2. Writing blog posts takes ages
There’s so much that goes into writing blog posts! When I get into writing mode I could spend hours writing a post. I like to draft a post, then change it up a little and then post it! But there’s so much more that goes with the writing..
3. A good blog post needs a good design!
After you’ve written the blog post you then need to create the visual work to go with it! This can be a task bloggers really love or really hate. Apparently, blog posts that do well always have nice visual images to go with them so that was something I really wanted to take on, but I had no idea just how much work goes into it. Photos need to be taken, edited and then the text bits have to go over that – and it takes forever to come up with a style you can use time and time again. I’m still struggling.
4. Making money is hard to do
Making money has never been a top priority for my blog – but if I was going to go down that route it all seems so complicated! One way a lot of people do this by displaying ads to their sites, but I personally don’t want ads on my blog and I’ll try to keep them away as much as I can! That doesn’t mean I have problem with blogs that show ads by the way, I really don’t I just don’t want to show them on mine at the moment!
There are other ways of making money too, like through sponsored posts and things like that but most of the opportunities I’ve come across have worked on a ‘gifting’ basis with no financial award.
5. There’s this thing called ‘coding’
Scariest word in the blogging dictionary, in my opinion. I had absolutely no clue what this was when I started blogging but I started needing to use it when I started adding widgets to my blog and customising my themes even more. It’s so confusing!!! Luckily there are tonnes of tutorials and help out there for when I need to use it! I sometimes try to figure things out myself before I turn to tutorials and sometimes I actually manage a win. It’s rare but lovely.
6. People like to steal your stuff
If you’ve been reading my blog a while you’ll have seen I wrote a post about having content stolen. I was quite naive in thinking that my blog was so small no one would bother directly copying me, but it’s something that’s sometimes impossible to avoid.
You can protect your blog against theft by not allowing users to save pictures from your site and by putting the all rights reserved mark on your blog, however that won’t be able to protect you against the ‘almost’ stealing that goes on. And remember, taking inspiration from someone and copying their work are completely different so feel free to take inspiration from me any time!
7. Sometimes having friends who blog is a bad thing
I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t it better to have a support network that know your struggle as a blogger? Yeah of course it is, but what happens when your ‘so called friend’ starts a blog just to compete with yours? I thought it was all innocent stuff, my best friend blogs too and we never have a struggle! But in this case, any good advice I tried to give was met with snide comments and in an even weirder turn of events I was asked not to mention a conversation we had had where I literally said ‘I didn’t agree’ with her opinion, I gave no indication as to who they are or anything – it was completely unreasonable! Of course I defended my blog. So yeah sometimes it does go sour, I’ve been a bit vague about everything but don’t worry the story is ongoing, there probably will be updates.
8. A lot of things contribute to where your blog lies in Search Rankings
I’m going to do a post about SEO soon so I won’t go into too much detail now, but there are a lot of steps to go through with every single blog post to ‘optimise’ where it ranks in search engines, I find this whole aspect of blogging really complicated but I’m planning on making it easy as pie to explain! I’ll post the link to it here as soon as I post it!
9. Blogging can get real expensive real quick
As you may have read early 2017 I bought my blog officially! I decided to self host with WordPress and buy a nice new shiny domain for myself. Unfortunately however, buying and self hosting your own blog costs quite a bit of money, so you need to make sure you’re fully committed before investing. However, your own website will make you seem a lot more professional and give your readers a more user-friendly experience. If you’re a complete newbie, why not try a hosted blog on WordPress.com or Blogger first and if it’s working out then make the move up to self – hosted.
If you live in Ireland I really recommend using Hosting Ireland as your host as I find it so easy to use and the customer support are really efficient at getting back to you (I had a reply back on a Sunday evening!). I’m not affiliated with Hosting Ireland in any way I just found it so easy to get set up on my own and I’m not a web designer in the slightest!
10. Blogging is one of the best thing you will ever do!
I didn’t think I would make such a good go of blogging like I’ve done this time round (after the many failed attempts since I was like 15 ew the bad memories). I think blogging has given me a lot of confidence to do things I never would have dreamed of, and I recommend it to everyone! Start one, about anything and stick with it no matter how tough it is.
If you have any thoughts on what I wrote, put them below in the comments!
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