Advice For New Blogger Continued
A while ago I wrote a post with advice for new bloggers and that post was strictly to help them stay careful, safe and to better understand blogging. You can read that post by clicking here.
I think when it comes to blogging there are some things you can only pick up on once you have been blogging for a while and since I have been picking up on some stuff over the years I like sharing it with everyone- especially newer bloggers.
A lot of times people seem to have this notion that doing stuff on the internet is easier than traditional work or that it’s a way to get rich quick. Although this is the case for very few people, the majority of people take a lot longer and have to work incredibly hard to grow their platform and actually do this full time.
Today, I decided to share some do’s and don’t’s for new bloggers because as I mentioned there are some things that you do not really pick up until you have been blogging for a while. These are some things that will help you grow your blog, increase your following and traffic and also in general just make your whole blogging experience better- at least I hope it will!
I think if you pick up one thing from this post let it be this- be active as much as you possibly can. Let me explain it a little better. There are two ways you can and in my opinion should be active on WordPress if you are trying to grow your blog.
The first way you need to be active is on your own blog. Make sure you are posting on a regular and scheduled basis. By regular and scheduled I don’t mean you have to post everyday although daily posting does have it’s benefits. What I mean is post as often as you can- maybe everyday, maybe every other day, maybe once a week or even once a month- just make sure you post it at the same time every day/week/month.
A lot of your followers probably follow multiple people and let’s be honest if you post at random times they are likely not going to see all your posts and most people will not go out of their way to see if you have posted something new recently. Therefore, posting at the same time or at least having some kind of schedule for each post makes a huge difference- it does not get you random followers/readers but rather loyal followers/readers. To find out how to schedule your post for maximum followers and traffic click here.
The next way to stay active is to be active on other blogs. I say this on almost every blogging advice post I make but blogging is a two way street and WordPress is a community that thrives on the support of one another. If you do not support other blogs you can not expect them to support you in the long run. I’m not saying comment on every single post ever created but notice who comments on your blog posts regularly and comment on theirs as well. Like the posts of other people. Most importantly, like and comment on posts that don’t already follow you as well- try to visit at least 5-20 new blogs a day depending on how much time you have.
I sort of can’t believe I need to specifically mention this but to be honest I have gotten so much hate this year that I just wanted to talk about this a little. Just to put it in a short and simple way- if you don’t have anything nice to say than don’t say anything. There are thousands of blogs out there so if you come across one that you don’t like/agree with than simply don’t like the post, don’t follow the blog and if you are so offended by the content block them.
Leaving hate effects people a lot more than some people realise and just going by my personal experience I just want to say you never know what is going on with the person in real life, how they are feeling, whether they suffer from certain mental health problems etc and your comment may truly effect them and their well being.
There is nothing wrong with leaving feedback- just remember to do it in a positive way without personally attacking the person. I would also recommend not doing it in the comments section as this can feel like an attack- instead reach out personally via email or social media. And please remember to be kind to one another.
Research Research RESEARCH
One thing I have picked up as a history major is to always do your research because research is the only way to truly learn.There is so much work that goes into creating a blog and so much more work that goes into actually running it.
One of the things I regret most when it comes to blogging is not doing enough research early on because now I have to keep going back and changing things which is extremely time consuming and frustrating. I also did not take advantage of the features that WordPress offers and I so wish I had.
But don’t be like me- do your research, figure out how to use everything, how to make your posts SEO friendly etc and most importantly make sure you have a plan for what you want your blog to become in two years time so that you’re not just putting out random posts for the sake of it but rather are working towards a goal. If you are just blogging to put out random posts than definitely go for it but if you want your blog to have a direction you may want to think ahead.
Make The Most Of Everything
Seriously, make the most of EVERYTHING. WordPress offers so many amazing features even on the free plan and you should definitely take advantage of everything it offers. This is where the research part comes in again- know exactly what you are being offered so that you can take advantage of it and use it to grow your blog. If you use your features correctly your blog will grow so much faster.
Another things I would recommend making the most of is the WP community. We are so lucky to have a much more positive, interactive and genuine community compared to a lot of platforms and don’t let that go to waste. Interact with others, get to know fellow bloggers, talk to new people and make the most of your blogging experience.
Take Your Time
Blogging is not a race or a make money quick scheme. I know it sounds a little corny but when it comes to blogging it’s more about the journey than the final destination. It takes time to grow your blog, to get to where you want to be when it comes to your followers and traffic count. It’s a lot of hard work and it takes a lot of patience, dedication, planning and enthusiasm however at least in my opinion it is so worth the hard work.
I think a lot of people kind of think when they start out that they are going to grow immediately without having to put too much work into it. That they will instantly get at least a few hundred views and followers. I myself am guilty of believing my blog would grow faster than it did. But I quickly learnt that it does not work like that. You need to put out quality content, be active and work really hard.
Leave Spam Comments
The reason I mentioned this first is because it seems like over the last few months there has been a large rise in the amount of spam comments that bloggers are leaving. I don’t know if it is just my blog but I do not remember getting these many spam like comments on my posts before.
There are a number of spam comments. Firstly, there the obvious spam that is not from another blogger but just left by random people on the internet. Immediately delete these and do not click on the links they leave as some of them are viruses.
The next kind of spam is something that annoys me the most. The blogger will leave a comment while completely ignoring your post and will pretty much advertise their blog on your comments section. Unfortunately, I can’t find one of the screenshots I had taken but this person pretty much ignored my post and commented something along the lines of “Hi, I have a blog about blah blah blah please go check it out” and left a link to their blog.
Another things people will do is leave a very generic “Nice post. Go check out my blog.”, “Great post. Go follow, like and comment on my blog.” or something very similar to those two. The last thing I wanted to mention is probably the most shady spam comment. They basically leave a comment and sign their name (which there is nothing wrong with- the next part is the problem) and in this name they leave a do-follow or no-follow link. People basically use your posts to get free backlinks when if done in an ethical way they would be paying you between $5-$100.
My point is, don’t leave spam comments. One, because people are not stupid and know exactly what you’re doing- they may be polite to you but they know. Two, it’s just a mean thing to do because everyone I know puts a lot of work into their posts and to completely disregard their posts and instead try to get backlinks for your blog is just an awful thing to do. Three, it’s annoying and people will block you which means you will probably be losing more traffic and followers than you are getting. Four, leaving a genuine comment goes a long way. Instead of wasting time with spam comments why not just leave a genuine comment because most people are likely to respond and go over to your blog if they enjoyed talking to you.
Unfortunately, there are bullies everywhere and although I would argue that the majority of the people on WordPress are friendly and lovely people in general there are still some that are not. I remember reading a post a while ago where someone actually told the blogger that they were “selfish” for not supporting someones blog that supported their blog.
Yes, WordPress is a two way street but that does not mean that people have to support other people no matter what. Most of us have lives outside of WP and have things to do other than blogging and it’s just not possible to read every single post of every single person who likes and comments on your blog.
The lesson here is that don’t emotionally blackmail people or bully people into supporting your blog. If they want to support it they will and if they don’t want to they have every right not to. Also don’t support other people hoping for something in return- support others because you genuinely like their content.
Stop Being Passionate
It’s hard to come up with new ideas for posts all the time and writers block is quite common. A lot of people feel exhausted after a few weeks of regular blogging because like I said it can be very hard work. If you feel like you are running out of ideas for blogging than take a break. Don’t force it. Write when you are truly passionate and write about what you love because it honestly makes a huge difference and your readers will be able to tell the difference.
I wanted to end this post by saying DON’T GIVE UP! It takes time so be passionate and keep working hard. I know at times you will feel like what’s the point maybe I should just stop blogging but don’t. It’s so important to stay passionate because over time your blog will grow and eventually you will reach your goals!
I want to apologise for the longer post- I actually got rid of a bunch of stuff while editing but it still ended up being a bit longer than usual but I just had a lot to say and I didn’t want to write a two part post of Do’s and Don’t’s separately.
What is one piece of advice you would give to new bloggers? Have you ever received spam comments and if you have how do you deal with them? Have you noticed an increase in spam like comments? Are you a new blogger or an older blogger? What is one thing you would recommend that bloggers never do? Have you ever received hate comments and if so how did you deal with them?
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