I’ve seen a lot of advice articles and posts with tips on starting a site or a blog and they’re mostly all helpful, though they get a bit redundant. I probably will offer a lot of the same points, though these are all based 100% on my own personal experience. Hope it helps.
1. Know What You Want To Do
What I mean by this is at least have the basic design, tone, and personality decided on. With the design, based on whether you’re paying someone to put together your site for you (In which I’d strongly recommend already knowing what you want unless you want to keep paying someone to change up your site which can get expensive, trust me, I’m a computer science major), or you’re starting off with a free design, it’s good to have a general idea of what you want. The appeal of your site is one of the first things, if not the very first thing, people pay attention to when they visit. So, make sure it represents you well and authentically.
Same goes for the tone/personality of your site. What kind of posts will you be making? If it’s all book-related, will you include reviews, hauls, author interviews, etc.? You can always go with the flow on what specifically you want to post, though make sure you know it’s a reading/book blog you want to start before going about it. Kinda frustrating to buy your site domain as “books, books & more books” and then decide you want to write about shoes or something, ya know?
The world is at our fingertips in this day and age. If you aren’t knowledgable about something, google it, watch YouTube videos from people who know they’re stuff, get inspired by other blogs, sites, and channels. Anyone can basically start a free blog, though there are a bunch that go dark after about 3 months or so because people realize that it’s more work than it seems to keep up with. I’d suggest figuring out a basic post schedule from the get-go too. Are you planning to post daily, weekly, twice a week? You get the gist.
3. Don’t Try To Be Anyone You’re Not
With anything you do, and with most professions, everyone offers this same advice: be yourself. It may be cheesy, though it is a good tip. No matter what you’re doing, if you’re not authentic and 100% who you are, what’s the point of doing…whatever you’re doing? Especially with a blog, people aren’t obligated to have one. It’s something that 90% start up simply because they want to, for their business, things like that. Plus, if you start out one way and then go-a-changin on folks, people will notice. Even online and through posts. And no one wants to follow a blog by someone who is full of fakery and who just posts about things because they want to get 2925977 likes, shares, and comments. So, be yourself. Don’t be that person that needs to be validated by how many followers you have or if someone unsubscribes from your blog, it ruins your day. Know who you are and all the awesome things you bring to the table. The right people will follow your blog and the one’s who don’t like your posts, won’t. Just let them be on their way and keep doin’ your thing.
4. Make Use of Tags, Categories, and Your Featured Image
The main things that make people click on a post are the featured image and the title. Try not to have extremely long titles because the average person will be like “This is too long, why is it so long?” and probably not click on it. Try to just keep it to the point. With tags and categories, make sure not to forget about them. They help people find your posts and they’re also just good for blog organization. If anything, be sure to make use of tags. Every keyword that is related to whatever your post is about, add it as a tag. Making your own featured images is a good way for your blog to show up in search engine results via Google, Bing, etc. I use Pixabay (free image site) to find a picture that relates to my particular post, and then add my site name at the bottom. You don’t have to do this every time for your featured image, though it’s a good option to utilize.
I hope this helped! I’m not really an expert at blogging, though I have been doing it on and off for a few years now and have learned quite a bit. What other tips would you have for those that want to start up their own blog?
image via Pinterest