6 Important Things to know before creating a Blog. Blogging is fun and has potential to provide income. Let’s get your blog off to a great start!
Why we started Homemade Food Junkie:
One day while I was making dinner, out of the clear blue sky, Kayti says “Mom you should write a food blog.” “A what?” I answered. That’s how much I knew about creating a food blog. Kayti knew what they were, and Google told us enough to get started.
We didn’t want to put a lot of money into it at first. BIG mistake! If we only knew then what we know now. That’s why we started this series on blogging. There is a lot to learn!
We started a garden/food/ DIY blog because that is who we are. It’s what we do and how we live every day. Kayti convinced me we could find an audience. We have! We love and appreciate you reading, cooking, and gardening right along with us!
Our goal for Homemade Food Junkie blog is to provide income for Dave and I to retire on 🙂 So far, after two years we have had many false starts, made lots of costly mistakes, Gained, lost, and gained back, huge amounts of traffic. And we still blog! We learned from the school of hard knocks. We are still learning that way. But it’s getting better and finally, we can see this blogging business has a future. We will meet our goals! Eventually.
What is Blogging?
Blogging is sharing your interests, hobbies, philosophies, talents…., anything basically, that you want to write about. Wanna rant? Lots of people do that on free blogging platforms.
6 Important Things to know before creating a Blog:
We made SO many mistakes we could have avoided if we had had better skills and information when we started. As most bloggers do; we have learned from the school of hard Internet Knocks. If you have questions, we will do our best to answer or we will point you in the right direction. Let us know what we can do to help you out in the comment section.
ASK YOURSELF THESE QUESTIONS:
1) What is My Blogging Goal?
You can enjoy blogging at whatever skill level and traffic amount you have as long as you are content with that. Blogging is a natural fit for people who enjoy writing, teaching or sharing their skills and thoughts online. Begin your blog on any platform you find easy to use. Putter around and write a post occasionally for your personal pleasure. An audience will find you and off you go!
No pressure to create a big following…
UNLESS you plan to monetize and create a business!
Blogging as a business is deceptively easy to get into. Many people have jumped onto blogging platforms and started posting. BUT, this business is just like all other small businesses. It takes a long time to develop. Huge amounts of time investment every day; and some money needs to be committed up front. That commitment needs to continue.
Most bloggers give up after a year or so. That’s no surprise. About 90 percent of all small businesses fail in the first five years. Small business people tread a narrow, uphill path filled with pitfalls. It’s easy to get discouraged.
Some bloggers have talents they bring to blogging which step them forward on the timeline. If you are a coder, professional photographer, marketer, social network star, have a career in finance, a hot blogging niche, or plan to set up your blog to promote a well-established career. These all give you a huge step up on the learning curve ladder.
We had NONE of those talents. We began Homemade Food Junkie, as many people do, with no idea about blogging or what it took to make it a successful business. There is a LOT of learning required for newbies like we were. Don’t give up! Get better information, hire help if you need it. Start learning! Blogging is a great way to eventually earn a stay at home living with various income stream possibilities!
2) How Much of a Commitment Will I Make?
Now-a-Days bloggers need to be Jacks of All trades. Stellar Content and trustworthy websites is all Google cares about. That’s all google SHOULD care about! We need to deliver if we want to be found. Expect your first several months, or even the first year to be about learning how to create good content in your posts that people will be searching for.
Learn to write well. learn to write for SEO. Learn to photograph like a pro! Take classes and invest in decent equipment for your business! Learn all the major social networks and Learn how to use them to promote your content online. And then there is the technical and business side to building and keeping up a blog. You may need to hire good techie help. I wish we had!
If you aren’t passionate about your subject matter, you will burn out quickly. It’s not an easy road, and it’s even harder if you don’t love what you are blogging about. Fortunately, we really like good food, DIY, and gardening, Blogging, for us, remains a fun hobby and we have met many MANY wonderful bloggers out there in bogland. They will help and support you 🙂
3) What blogging platform Should I use?
For monetization of your blog; Wordpress.org is the easiest to use. Along with a blog platform you will need a Web hosting service and You need to name your blog and buy a domain for it. We use WPOPT.com for our web server and GoDaddy holds our Domain.
One of the first mistakes that we made was starting our blog on Blogspot.com. We could not own our own content, create a revenue stream from ads, or feel secure in our long-term business ownership on this platform. Next, we tried Weebly…same problem. We finally switched over to a WordPress.org platform when our blog was already 6 months old. Our traffic went back down to zero. We didn’t migrate the posts over correctly. We essentially had to start over again. Don’t make the same mistake we did, choose your platform wisely and hire whatever help you need to get the blog set up right!
When we started the blog, we were very excited if we got 30 page views in an entire day. Since there isn’t a degree in blogging, you will be giving yourself a crash course in the blogging world with you as both the professor and the student. There is help out there from other bloggers and websites. Food Bloggers Central is a great place to start!
4) How Fast Do I Need Income?
The very first year that the blog was up we earned just over $600. That’s roughly $1.64 per day. Not exactly a stellar income. We recommend you keep your day job! After you work your day job, you will be working at least 4-8 hours per day on your new blog to get it off the ground. This is not a get rich quick scheme. Blogging is very hard and time-consuming. Think of your blog like any small business. Small businesses usually take 5 years of Incredible time and energy commitment before they start earning any sufficient income. Blogging is like that! You need to be passionate, smart and determined!
5) What is SEO and Why Do I need to Learn it?
Search Engine Optimization is optimizing your post to be as searchable as possible by the internet search engines. This allows the search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing to be able to find your posts and send traffic to your blog. SEO is a constantly changing world. The search engines change their SEO requirements as technology changes and advances. You must keep up with current SEO requirements in order to build and retain search engine traffic. Learn what SEO is as quickly as possible. Make your blog and your posts SEO friendly to gain rank and traffic.
6) Do I Really Need A Social Network?
YES! Social networks will be your main traffic drivers for the first several years. Get accounts with your blog profile on each of these platforms and begin building your brand immediately.
NOTE: Not all social networks will drive traffic consistently to your blog. The main point here is to build your BRAND online. This eventually builds your trust factor on search engines. Potential sponsors love a huge social network following. Get started!
I hope you found 6 Important Things to know before creating a Blog valuable. Keep checking back for more posts in this series on getting a blog up and running. We love blogging and want to support you. Happy Blogging!