First and foremost, I want to thank all of my followers – on Google Friend Connect (GFC), Twitter, and Facebook. A special shout out to my GFC followers for your loyal support and helping me get to over 1,000!
As I write this, I am looking at the beautiful faces of my 1,009 Google Friend Connect followers. I know that not every one reads this blog every day, but I am thankful for the returning visits from followers and RSS subscribers who do take the time to visit me on a daily basis.
A majority of my followers are mom bloggers. Only about 34 percent of my traffic is from Google and other search engines. I rely on the continued support of my followers to have the courage and energy to blog every day. So thank you everyone!
Several weeks ago, a reader commented and asked if I would share blogging tips on how I’ve made my blog so successful. Let me preface by saying that I am not that successful. Not monetary-wise. But I want to share my personal blogging tips to help other newbie mom bloggers out there.
Here are my Top 7 Blogging Tips for the Newbie Mom Blogger:
Be Passionate about Your Subject
Blogging is a fun and exciting experience . . . if you are passionate about the topic you’re writing. If you aren’t interested in your blogging niche, it’s going to show through in your writing. (And you will be unhappy as a blogger, too.)
People are pretty smart when it comes passionate blog posts versus ones that have no substance. Passion will carry you through and motivate you to continue blogging. Because blogging is an unpaid activity – for most newbie bloggers – why would you spend time writing for free if you aren’t interested in the topic?
Since my blog is focused on educating mothers and women about pregnancy and women’s health topics, I have to be extremely interested in my topic. And I love writing about PMS, Pregnancy, and Babies. That’s how I am able to come up with new topics to write about each and every day. Passion is what carries me through – even though I don’t make any money blogging yet. Occasionally, when someone clicks a Google ad, I make a $1. This blog is not yet a huge monetization machine. I have hope that it will one day.
Write and Post New Content Regularly
If you want to increase traffic to your site, you have to add regular content to your blog. Not only will publishing new posts on a regular basis increase the number of pages on your blog, which gives it more strength and Google juice, but new content offers your followers something new to read. Common sense, right?
You should set a regular blogging schedule and stick to it. This can turn readers into loyal followers, who will come back and visit your blog religiously. When you stick to a firm blogging schedule, your regular readers get used to that schedule. They will visit your blog on the days they expect a new post.
You don’t have to write every day, but it should be regular and consistent. You could publish three times a week, or perhaps just weekly. But you need to stick to a schedule. If you are sloppy about your scheduled posting times, regular visitors will get disappointed. Gradually, they may stop coming. This can lead to a decline in traffic – which is what you want to avoid.
I try my hardest to provide my readers with new content every day. On the weekends, I do occasionally falter. But after working a 50-hour work week (for my full-time job), and blogging at night, I do need a break on Saturday and Sundays. However, most days, I write my blog posts beforehand and schedule them to be published at 7:00 a.m.
Like I said, I do falter. There are some weeknights when I am so exhausted from the day’s writing work (I’m a professional health writer full-time) that my brain does not work, so I miss an occasional post.
Don’t Obsess Over the Numbers
When you’re a newbie blogger, it’s tough avoiding the numbers. Your daily blogging rounds often include checking your traffic stats – how many people visited you, where they came from, what keywords, etc. – and seeing how many followers you have now.
Checking the numbers of Google Friend Connect followers and RSS followers can become an obsessive habit. You want new followers, more followers. And you get frustrated when the number is stagnant and doesn’t increase. Then, you get depressed. Why doesn’t anyone like me?
What’s truly heartbreaking is seeing the numbers drop. You might have 150 followers one day, and the next morning, there are only 149. One person unfollowed you – HEARTBREAK!
You are an experienced blogger – a blogger who is moving up the ladder – when you stop caring about your numbers. You don’t obsessively check your stats every two hours. Maybe you check once a week, or twice a week but you don’t linger, and you don’t obsess.
When you don’t obsess over the numbers, you will be much happier. This is the one blogging tip that will free you.
I don’t check my numbers anymore. Once a week, I do check to see what my total follower count, and what my average traffic is, but it doesn’t plague me like it used to. I’ve let go.
My time is better used in researching and writing quality content for the blog. Obsessing was just a time-waster. There was nothing I could do about one lost GFC follower. And when my traffic was only at 200 visits a day, what could I do? Weep? Letting go and not caring about the numbers freed me.
Socialize and Interact with Other Mom Bloggers
One of the blogging tips that has led to my success is interacting and socializing with other mom bloggers. I’m a member of Mom Bloggers Club, Social Moms, and Bloggy Moms. In each of these social networking sites for mom bloggers, I regularly interact with other members. I belong to “You Follow Me, I Follow You” type of groups. I visit other blogs and comment on their posts.
Socializing and visiting other people’s blogs is time-consuming, but you must do it. A blog cannot be successful if no one knows you’re out there. Comment, comment, comment!
Bloggers love personal comments about what they’ve written about. It makes them feel special and loved. They are more willing to reciprocate and follow you back if you write a thoughtful comment about what they’ve posted. ALWAYS leave your link after your name. People need to know where to find you.
Blog hops are another useful way to get followers. Blog hops are lists of blogs to visit. You “link up” (add your link to the list), and then visit other blogs that you are interested in following. When you follow someone, always comment and let them know. Google Friend Connect does not automatically notify them when you’ve joined the site. You must let them know that you’re a new follower.
Reader-Friendly Blog Design
You’re probably not a graphic designer, but you need to make your blog easy to read and navigate. Some people will immediately click off if you have too many flashy, hard-to-read elements on your blog. A clean blog design is best.
Creative fonts are pretty, and they’re great for headers and titles, but don’t use them as the main font in your text. They are hard to read. Most people skim, and they won’t take the time to attempt to read a hard font. Use fonts that are easy on the eyes, like Helvetica, Arial, Times Roman, etc.
If you can, avoid too many graphics. It increases the load time of your blog. People are impatient.
You should also keep the background of your blog simple. Busy backgrounds distract the reader from your content. The eye goes to the creative wallpaper-looking background and not on the information that you’re providing.
You may have to sacrifice creativity to get more traffic. I don’t want to take away from the design you have in mind, but my blogging tip is for you to design a blog that is easy to navigate and easy to read. The text should be the main attraction.
Guest Post and Offer Guest Post Opportunities
You may have noticed that I have guest bloggers who write for me. My guest bloggers make it easier for me to keep this blog updated every day, and they offer valuable information to my readers.
Guest posting is something that all newbie bloggers should consider. It may sound like a big waste of time, but it’s truly not. Writing a guest post on a blog that is similar to your blog topic introduces you to new readers. If people enjoy your guest post, they will often click and go to your site.
Another perk of guest posting – you get a link back to your site. One of the ways Google ranks you is by looking at how many other sites have linked to you. So the more guest posting you do, the higher you will rank in Google.
I offer guest posting opportunities to anyone who is interested. It’s an awesome way for me to get more content for my blog, and makes it easier for me to run this website every day. My life is easier, and I get to introduce my readers to awesome blogs.
(If you’d like to guest blog for me, please contact me a firstname.lastname@example.org). Look forward to hearing from you!)
Patience, Patience, Patience
Patience is a virtue, and you must have patience to be a successful blogger. Don’t expect to be an instant viral hit immediately. And don’t expect the money to flow in just because you’re now a blogger. It takes time to build an audience and to find loyal readers.
As long as you continue to write and post new content on a regular basis, interact with other bloggers, and you are passionate about what you write, you will eventually be successful.
Rome wasn’t build in a day, and don’t expect for your blog to take off anytime soon. It might take months, or a year before your efforts take off. Just have patience. Know that successful will come eventually.
You should blog because you love it. Not for any other reason. Success will come if you keep trying. Don’t give up. Don’t be impatient.
I hope that some of these blogging tips help you on your journey to become a better, stronger mom blogger!