The long awaited blogging 101 series is finally here! This is the first of many posts giving tips and tricks I have learnt since I started blogging. Looking at my older posts, I have noticed how much my blog has grown since I started two years ago. One thing I will say is that once you start blogging you will subconsciously learn new skills and improve the ones you already have. Blogging is a way to connect with people who have the same interests as you while showcasing your creativity in your little space on the internet.
1. Know why you want to start a blog
Some people decide they want to start a blog but have no idea what to blog about. Find out what your passion is and roll with it. Your passion for your niche will shine through in your blog posts. There will always be someone somewhere in the world that is interested in what you want to say.
2. Choosing a blog name
Choosing the name for my blog was probably one of the hardest things I ever had to do. It may sound like a simple task but it will set the tone of your blog. Lord knows I went through a range of stupid names. Just a little tip…run your blog name by a few friends or family before you make it official. It will save you a lot of regret in the future. Your blog is an extension of you so find a unique name that screams you! It is the name your readers will associate you with and if you hope to work with brands in the future, it is better to have a blog name you can use professionally.
3. Choose a blogging platform
There are various blogging platforms but the main ones are Blogger and WordPress. Personally, I chose WordPress because it was easy to set up and allowed me to choose from a range of different themes. When I first started blogging I was not sure whether I would stick with it so decided to get a free WordPress blog. I only recently upgraded to the paid domain version. When deciding what blogging platform to use there are a few factors you should consider; how much control you want over your blog? Do you want to set everything up yourself? Do you want a self-hosted website? Are there any fees involved? What can the blogging platform offer in terms of aesthetics for your blog? These are just a few things to think about initially and will save you a lot of time in the long run if you do decide you want to make drastic changes to your blog.
4. Pick a layout
The layout of your blog will depend on the content you want to put on it for example, if you wanted to showcase your photography a visual layout would draw the reader’s attention to it. However, if you wanted to showcase your writing skills you may want to use a one or two column layout depending on your preference. One rule I like to use for layouts is keep it simple. If your blog looks too cluttered it is visually unappealing. Lastly, I would recommend not having background music play automatically as someone clicks on your site for several reasons. One being that it is annoying especially if you are in a quiet place such as a library or you are at work.
5. Be yourself
Authenticity is the key to successful blogging. When you start to stray from the topics you are passionate about blogging becomes a chore. As you post more and your blog grows your readers will get to know you and value your opinion. Honesty is the best policy!