I started both of my blogs in November of 2020. I have already learned a lot since then and wanted to document it so that others can learn what I have learned. Hopefully these Blogging 101 tips will help streamline and leapfrog your blogs, giving you a little advantage over the competition.
1. Patience Is key
Patience is key is my first blogging 101 tip and it is very important. It is very easy when starting a new blog to lose patience. Most bloggers are all about the numbers. I believe most people are anxious and looking for quick results when it comes to traffic and Sales.
Most Bloggers end up quitting within the first six months because they don’t see any results. Traffic takes time. It will take at least three to six months to see any sort of traffic start to come in and even then it will be very small amounts of traffic.
This initial waiting period is referred to as the “Google Sandbox.”
Google wants to make sure that your site is going to be producing good content on a consistent basis before it starts to rank your site well.
It normally takes around 8 months to a year for a blog article to hit its peak in traffic.
Stay patient and the traffic will eventually come. Just keep writing solid content that is helpful to the reader. This leads me right into the next point.
2. Write Helpful Content
Number two on the list of blogging 101 tips is to write helpful content. A lot of bloggers in the beginning are so focused on writing blog articles for the search engines that they forget to write for the actual reader. Don’t get caught up in the spiral of SEO. Of course you want to optimize your post.
But your first priority should be to write engaging and helpful content that will directly answer the question that the reader is asking.
Do it in an informative way that gives them solid information that they can actually use.
Google’s algorithm will detect your articles helpfulness and should give priority to it based on those factors combined with the normal SEO attributes.
So keep that in mind when you are writing your next article. Ask yourself: How can I write this article in the most helpful way possible to the reader?
3. Target Snippets
Blogging 101 tip number three is a fairly recent one that I learned. If you haven’t noticed already, snippets are becoming more and more popular in the search engines, especially Google.
A snippet is the little snippet of text, usually around a paragraph long, that directly answers the users question without them even having to click through to the web page.
The bad news: Unfortunately this means less people will need to actually click the link to visit the web page for the answer. However, this normally pertains to questions that have a short answer. More in depth topics will still require click through and reading of the full article for details.
The good news: Fortunately this means that you can take advantage of this new style of “snippet” and craft your blog articles in a way that makes them appealing to Google.
To target “snippets” simply answer the question in your article with a direct and to the point answer in the second paragraph of your article. Bold the text of the whole paragraph.
This tells the search engine that the bold paragraph at the top of your article, is the answer to the question.
This method should help improve your SEO and hopefully allow you to surpass some of the competition who maybe aren’t taking advantage of snippets on their pages.
4. Focus on Pinterest for Social Media Traffic
Blogging 101 tip number four is crucial for traffic development. Don’t spread yourself thin by trying to focus your energy on too many different social media platforms. Focus most of your social media efforts on Pinterest.
Pinterest is a huge traffic driver for blogs and worth spending some time on. Posts on social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are fleeting and are almost immediately replaced with new posts. In the long run, they will not send a significant amount of traffic in most cases.
However, they can be good for building your brand awareness so I am not saying abandon them completely. Just don’t focus a lot of your time and energy on them.
You are much better served spending your time writing good quality content and building your Pinterest traffic.
Pinterest on the other hand keeps sending traffic long after you post a pin on their platform. I have heard about several bloggers who get the majority of their blog traffic from Pinterest.
To save you time and simplify things, you can use a scheduler like the Tailwind App to schedule all of your pins ahead of time. I have learned that around 20 pins a day is the sweet spot with an 80/20 ratio. This means posting 16 of your own pins and 4 of other peoples pins daily.
5. Use a plugin for Google Analytics
I learned blogging 101 tip number five the hard way. I should have know this from the start but I made the mistake of constantly having to update my Google Analytics code every time I updated my WordPress theme which was a lot.
For a long time I just didn’t really think about it and would manually go into my header.php file and add that little snippet of code for Google Analytics right after the first tag.
I finally got sick of adding it and did a search for “Google Analytics” plugins. Now I am using GA Google Analytics plugin by Perishable Press.
Now I don’t have to worry about constantly updating that code every time there is a new WordPress theme update. I can just set it and forget it. This will save you precious time in your blogging journey!
6. Use images to spice up your blog posts
Blogging 101 tip number six is to use images to spice up your blog posts. When I first started my two blogs in November and up until recently, I was only using a featured image in most of my blog articles.
I have recently changed my approach and am now trying to include some stimulating visuals in the form of images and screenshots to improve the reader experience.
This is important because people love to see pictures throughout a post instead of just long blocks of boring text.
Remember tip #2. You want your content to be helpful to the user. This means you should include any type of helpful images that you can to better explain the point you are trying to get across.
Tips for blog post images:
- Use a high quality featured image and at least 3 or 4 nice images throughout your post.
- Try to have a new image appear before the previous image disappears while scrolling down.
- Use charts and graphs to display statistical data.
- Use screenshots to visually describe a step by step process.
- Create and display an infographic for statistical data and for traffic purposes.
I plan on going back to update most of my previous blog posts with more images for a more visual experience in my articles. I have already updated a few. This leads me to the next tip.
7. Update old blog posts
Number seven on the list of blogging 101 tips is to update old blog posts. I have learned that it is very important to go back and update your old blog posts.
At some point, you should take a break from writing new content to go back and update your older articles.
Search engines love to see that you are keeping things fresh and up-to-date.
Since it takes around 6 months for your articles to get indexed nicely into the search engines, this is a good time to go ahead and update your old blog posts.
Keep things relevant and add some more text and images if you can to spruce up your posts. You can also update any posts with the previous year in the title, like “2020.”
If you article was reviewing certain products and there is a new product that should be on the list, go ahead and add it. Your readers will appreciate this as well!
8. Don’t spend too much time renovating your blog
Blogging 101 tip number eight will save you a lot of time. A lot of bloggers spend too much time trying to get their blog design perfect. Do not spend too much time doing this. Having the perfect design is not going to matter in the beginning because hardly anyone will be seeing your blog for a while starting out.
I recommend spending one day getting your blog up and running. Then you should completely focus on writing solid content and as many articles as you can pump out. That being said, don’t rush your articles. Instead focus on writing quality long form “helpful” content that will add value to your readers.
Quick tips for setting up your blog in one day:
Like I said, try to get everything up and running in one day so that you can start writing as soon as possible. You will have plenty of time to tweak things along the way. The quicker you get the content written, the faster it will eventually show up in the search engines.
9. Use Youtube to build your brand and traffic
Blogging 101 tip number nine is to use Youtube to build your brand and traffic. Youtube is extremely popular in this day and age. It is a great way to build your brand’s presence and get some good quality traffic in return.
The best way for bloggers to do this is by converting their blog posts into videos that they can upload to Youtube. This is perfect if you don’t have the time to make more personal videos and edit them etc.
There is a program online called Vidnami that makes it very easy to turn your past blog posts into an engaging and professional Youtube video.
It features a simple copy and paste platform that leads you through each step in making your video.
The program works like this in a nutshell:
- You copy the text from your entire blog post
- Paste it into the Vidnami program
- It will convert all of your text into separate picture and video clips
- It also adds the text from your blog in snippets to your clips
- You can adjust each clip and change the pictures or videos if need be
- Add a voice over or automated voice to your video
- Save it to your computer to upload later on Youtube
This is a great way to get the most from all of your blog posts. Eventually you can make some nice income off of your Youtube channel as well.
10. Have fun blogging
Blogging 101 tip number ten is probably my favorite. Being a successful blogger will be a long hard journey and you will need a lot of patience to get there. This means that you should definitely have some fun along the way!
Blog about something you really enjoy sharing with others. Your passion for the topic will shine through to your readers.
Think of some fun ways to express your ideas. Blogging is the perfect platform to be creative.
Connect with other bloggers and share your experiences with one another. Chances are there is someone else who is just as passionate about your niche.
Networking is a great way to build relationships in the blogging world. This of course is also a wonderful way to get some much needed backlinks to your new blog.
I hope that these Blogging 101 tips have given you some insight into my experience and the blogging world. Please take these tips and implement them into your own blog.
There is definitely a lot of money to be made with your own blog if you put into effect the right strategy and focus on writing top notch quality content. Just don’t get discouraged when you don’t see any traffic for a long period.
If you need some inspiration and want to know exactly what is possible when it comes to income from a good niche blog, check out my article “How Much Do Bloggers Earn – 2021 Income Reports.”
Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think!
Are you a beginner blogger? What have you learned since you started your first blog? Let me know! I would love to hear about it!