how to grow your blog | tips and tricks for growing your blogWednesday, November 11, 2015
Multiple times during the past few months I have gotten emails from other bloggers, or people who are looking to get into blogging, asking for any advice I may have about starting and growing a blog. Honestly, I'm always flattered that someone would ask me for advice on blogging. I feel like I have learned a lot, but that I still have so much to learn! (Although, I feel like there will always be something new to learn since it's the internet haha.) I had a document typed up on my computer that I sent to anyone who asked, and I decided I might as well put my thoughts out there so that they could hopefully help other people. I hope these tips help you and that you learn something new!
1. Network- As with any job, networking will help you get ahead. The blogging network is amazing and it really makes blogging more fun when you have people who you interact with on a daily basis. Leave meaningful comments on other blogs and respond to comments on yours. I always try to respond back to someones comment by visiting and commenting on their blog. Unless, of course, the person is not a blogger and then I will comment to them. I feel like it creates more of a sense of community when I do that rather than just commenting "Thanks!". Although I certainly think that is better than nothing! (Some people do both and that is incredibly impressive haha!) I am not perfect and do not get to this every single day, but I do try. I like to think that nobody would comment on my blog twice without me replying somehow. Think about it. If you are leaving a comment on a blog, you most likely want a response to your comment. Don't "leave those people hanging".
2. Stick to a schedule- This tip goes around constantly and for good reason. Your readers need to know when they can expect you to post. Whether you post 5 days a week, 3 days a week, or just once, set a schedule and stick to it. I use bloglovin', so anytime someone updates I get a notification. However, I have so many friends who just have a "Favorites" folder in their browser that has the links to their blogs. They go through the list every day to see posts. You don't want someone to stop coming to your blog, just because they don't know when to look! Of course things happen, but for the most part you really should try to stick to a schedule. I personally have stopped reading blogs, because I felt like they were never updated. It made it hard to establish a "connection" to them as a reader and I never knew when I could expect new content. Sticking to a schedule lets your readers know when to come to your blog and how often.
3. Always put out content you're proud of- This stems off of tip number 2, but you should always put content out there that you are proud of. When I first started blogging, I posted 5 days a week. I felt so much pressure to always post 5 days. Because of that, I would put out content just to have a post up... even if I wasn't proud of it. Eventually I backed down to just 3 days a week so that I could always put out something that I was happy to share. You may think it is better to throw something together than not post, but it really isn't. With the internet, every single post on your blog could be the first time someone is on your blog. Pinterest, google searches, other people sharing your posts, etc. could all make that post from 3 years ago the first thing someone reads from your site. Make it good content and they'll want to stay! Find a schedule that works for you, that you know you will be able to stick to, and create quality content. I like to think that quality over quantity is a great statement here. I would rather have 3 posts up every week that I am happy to share than 3 posts I love and 2 that are just so-so.
4. Update old posts- As I mentioned above, the internet can lead someone back to a post from years ago. I like to pay attention to what posts are popular in my statistics. If any of them are more then 6 months old, I will go back through them to update them. This can be things like adding links to a post, naming pictures, re-pinning from them, etc. I recently just went through and updated all my travel posts to include links and a pinnable image. When I first wrote them, I would name something we did, but not link to it. If you are reading a travel post about things to do somewhere, you probably are going to want to be able to click to view more, right?! Now if you go back and read, you can easily click into attractions, restaurants, hotels, etc. It is much more user friendly now.
5. Share your posts- Any post that is shared on social media is guaranteed to have more traffic than one that is not. Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc. can all drive traffic to your site. Share your post on all relevant sites. Also, go back and re-share. I am not the best at this, it is something I am trying to get better at. I will post on my Pinterest boards a pin from that day's post. I used to do all pictures at one time, but then I realized that very few people will see them that way. Rather than a variety of people possibly seeing them, a few people will just see all 6-7 pictures. Now I will go back a few hours later, or the next day, and add more pins from that post. Another thing I do, is try to pin to my boards and to a group board. Doing this has really expanded the traffic to my blog. I used to think sharing just meant sharing my post once. However, you will really benefit if you share multiple times and also share other people's content as well. (This goes back to point number one about networking! ;))
There are my top five tips for growing a blog. I kept it down to five because as you can tell this post is very long already haha. However, if you want me to do more posts around this please let me know! I do not feel like I know everything, but I am happy to share what I have learned along the way.
Have any tips of your own? Feel free to share them in the comments!
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