There are so many bloggers out there and even more pieces of blogging advice. Sometimes it feels like I can’t scroll through Pinterest without seeing post after post with blogging tips. Because of all the information out there, it can be difficult to separate the helpful for the spammy comments out there. In order to help you actually improve as a blogger, I’m sharing the 6 best pieces of blogging advice that I’ve ever received over the course of the 3-4 years that I’ve been blogging.
Don’t compare yourself to others – This is a good piece of advice for everyone, but it’s especially important for bloggers. Every single blog is different, as is every niche, and while it seems like it’s a too-talked about golden nugget, it really is good advice. No one else out there has your voice, and if it seems like they do, either you or them are faking it. So don’t write a certain way because you think that’s what people want to read. You’ll burn out quickly by trying to be someone you’re not, and you won’t have fun doing it. And you don’t stay blogging for years if it isn’t fun at least part of the time!
Write about what interests you, not necessarily what you think would interest your audience – Similar to the previous point, you won’t be able to stay blogging for years if you don’t write about what’s interesting to you. But if you want your blog to grow (like, really grow), you do need to walk the fine line of writing about what interests you in a way that it can help and/or interest your audience. This is why I keep a running list of post ideas in Evernote so that I can find a topic that I’m interested in and I can write it in a way that helps my audience.
It might take longer for you to get the level of success that other bloggers do – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: every single blogger and blog is different, and everyone has skills different from others. You can use all of the skills and tools that others do and it can still take longer for you to succeed than they did.
Get your own domain and switch to WordPress – I bought my own domain within the first couple of months of regular blog posting, but I didn’t switch to self-hosted WordPress until 2.5 years later and I wish I switched sooner. The biggest parts of it that I love are the facts that I now own all of my content (Google technically owned it when I was on Blogger) and plugins have completely revamped how I blog. It was so, so worth it.
Write a lot – The meaning of this phrase depends on the person, but the gist of it is the same. Longer posts tend to have higher success with readers so long as its helpful, but it doesn’t make sense to do so unless there is a point. At the same time, if you have long posts, you’re probably not going to have the energy to write long posts multiple times a week. I made the choice to write 2-3 points a week (aiming for 3 obviously) and they’re between 500 and 2,000 words. The exact length depends on the topic and the emphasis of the post, namely that if it’s a picture-heavy post I probably won’t write as much..
Brand yourself and your blog – There are a lot of pros to branding your blog, like you and your work will be visable across the Internet and it will help your readers know who you are. I’m not the best at explaining why this is necessary, though, so hopefully these will help: How To Brand Yourself without Spending Monday and Why You Need a Brand To Be a Successful Blogger.
Use nofollow links and include a disclaimer – I can’t emphasize this enough and I wished that I had listened to this sooner: you need nofollow links. Basically, this piece of advice boils down to you need to state when you can make money from a post, whether it’s affiliate links or a sponsored post or anything in between. I already included disclaimers, but I wasn’t using nofollow links and Google eventually stopped showing my posts in search engine results because I wasn’t using them.
What is the best piece of blogging advice that you’ve received?