Must-haves for all bloggers and steps to take from the get go!
“Success is normally found in a pile of mistakes” -Tim Fargo
“Your email list is going to be your highest converting traffic channel.” -Neil Patel
“What you do after you create your content is what truly counts.” -Gary Vaynerchuk
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” -Albert Einstein
I know that when you first get started blogging, it can feel very overwhelming. So many options, so many opinions. I will give it to you straight. I am about to tell you what works for me, but I am a strong believer in finding what works for you when it comes to blogging. A lot of things depend on your niche, some are just personal preference, and some depends on what you want from your blog. Do you want to monetize? Is this just a hobby or do you want to make it into something more than that? Is it just for fun or is it fun but also a dream of yours?
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Must-haves for all Bloggers
- Social Sharing Buttons- These are super important to have on your blog. This is how people can share your posts on social media. You want them to be able to pass along your posts. Get your work out there! Social media really does drive traffic to your blog.
- Popups- So important when it comes to building your email list (more on this later.)
- Analytics- Very important. Google Analytics is free.
- Yoast- help make SEO a lot easier.
Build Your Email List From Day One
I am honestly kicking myself for this one. I wish that I had utilized an email subscribe popup when I FIRST started my blog. However, I just assumed people would “follow” me and that would be good enough. Sadly that was not the case. You aren’t given their email when they follow you. So after 5 months of blogging, over 200 followers, I only have 37 email subscribers. 😦 I started using MailChimp. I love it. So easy to use. So many templates. I started doing a weekly newsletter and it has helped increase my daily views, so I know without a doubt that if I had a larger email list that it would only be even better. So I urge you to start that NOW. Having somewhere for readers to signup for your newsletter is crucial to gaining traffic for your blog.
Join Groups You Can Trust And Feel Comfortable In
Facebook has been great for me when it comes to making sincere connections. I have lost count on how many times the people in these groups have helped to bail me out of a blogging issue or inspire me to keep going. Believe it or not, at least for me, sometimes this blogging journey can feel a bit lonely. It is always nice to be able to have a group of people that you can reach out to and be reminded that you aren’t alone.
Proper Use Of Pictures Is A Must
You can only use pictures on your site of the following types:
- Your own personal photographs.
- Any images you have paid for (as long as you paid for the right use) Pay close attention to their terms and double check whether you need to give credit.
- Any images that are available on a copyright free website. I like to use Unsplash and Pexels.
- Pictures where you have gotten direct permission from the owner.
Canva is a great tool that allows you to design anything and publish straight from their site. It comes with thousands of templates that can be customized to fit your needs and personal style. It is great for Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook images for posting. Creating a Canva account is free and there’s no need to pay for its essential features. The free option still allows you to make beautiful designs and publish them. Canva has apps available on iPhones, Ipads, and Androids.
I highly recommend Tailwind, especially if you want to up your Pinterest game (Instagram too). Tailwind allows you to schedule multiple posts for Pinterest and Instagram, months in advance. You can even set it up to pin to multiple boards and track activity and trends and offers analytics to help you monitor your Instagram and Pinterest followers, brand mentions, likes, repins, boards, etc… However, they do offer a free trial and then it is $15.00 a month for the Plus Plan.
I know that some people are really on a tight budget, which I completely understand, but I can say that I have noticed an increase in my monthly viewers and blog traffic from Pinterest and Instagram. I went from 2 monthly viewers to 131,000 viewers in a little over 2 months. Now I am not going to blindly give all that credit to Tailwind because I re-worked all my pins and worked really hard on the pin descriptions. But Tailwind is a great asset for me.
I am a visual person. It helps me tremendously to see step-by-step what is needed to be done for each post, from writing to pining to socializing and everything in between. I love the feeling of accomplishment that I get each time I get to mark something off my list.
These are my must-have for bloggers. Do you have any must-haves? Any tricks up your sleeve? I would love to hear. The truth is I am still learning. I believe that blogging can be a learn as you go scenario. Don’t be afraid to try new things. If it works, great! If it doesn’t, pick up the pieces and try something different. Find what works best for you and run with it.
Want some more help with blogging? Here is a post on Pinterest for beginners.
“But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31