11 Helpful Tips for Starting and Building a Blog
Over the past year I have learnt so much about blogging and I am still learning about different areas, but I thought I would share with you my tips on how to start a blog and build it into something successful!
- Choose a topic- Find something that you are really passionate about, you don’t necessarily have to be an expert in that area, but you do need to be able to write a lot about it on a regular basis.
- Pick a name- Create a name that isn’t too long so that it is easy to remember but gives an idea of your blog’s topic.
- Cross-check it- I would recommend that you do this to ensure that the name doesn’t already exist; there are several websites that you can check for the same social networks and URLS for example Knowem.com.
- Resister a domain name- You don’t have to have a domain name, most free blogger platforms will create your domain for free but it will be www.(yourblogname).(theirwebsite).com. So having your own domain is better for your blog.
- Choose a platform which is suited to you; including skills, needs and budget- You need to decide what you want your blog to look like before you choose a platform. I use WordPress.
If you are just starting out I would recommend that you use WordPress.com because it’s a free blogger platform that is easy to use and set up. The URL would be: www.(yourblogname).wordpress.com however you can upgrade to include your own domain. If you already have a domain name and hosting, I would recommend using WordPress.org. You are responsible for everything and is mainly only used for more experienced bloggers.
There are plenty of hosting sites that support WordPress, I use TSO Host and find them very useful, they were able to guide me through anything I needed when I was first starting out. If I have a problem now I just email them and they reply within the same day. I can give you a 10% discount code of hosting if you use my code: itsagirlthingb1 at the checkout. You can get WordPress hosting on TSO Host for as little as £1.25pm.
At the top of your blog you need to include everything that you want people to see, for example, Blog name and tagline, links to social media accounts; you can use plugins for this. RSS and newspaper subscription options. Contact pages, categories. You can add these in a side bar too if your layout allows you to do so.
6. Find your own style- Find what you enjoy, or what your best at for example, product reviews or providing tutorials.
7.Create good content- Create your own content, be unique. When I first started I looked at other bloggers to get some inspiration from them.. but do not copy because your website will get penalised for it.
8.Before publishing- Spell Check and make sure you have relevant images to the topic that you are writing about.
9. Set your own schedule- Find a time when you are free to write a couple of posts and schedule them throughout the month. Work out when you could sit down to write down a blog post and create a schedule around this.
10. Tools and Resources- Use apps to schedule posts on Twitter,I found Tweet Deck really useful to manage my Twitter account. Use CoSchdeule to schedule your WordPress calendar and find a backup plugin for your website to make sure that your posts don’t all disappear!
11. Networking- Connect with other bloggers on social media and commenting on their blog posts. You can attend blogger conferences and events to meet brands and other bloggers. You can also join several blogging groups on Facebook.
11. Learn the basics-
- HTML & CCS- Knowing how to make simple changes to you website can improve your website dramatically.
- Design- There are lots of different options in WordPress where you can use ready-made design options to make your blog better.
- SEO- Following simple SEO tips can increase the amount of traffic you receive from google.
- Backing up- You should make up regally to prevent you from loosing any of your posts.