How to Start a Successful Blog: Experts Share Their Secrets
By Pete Seeling
Weblogging, which we have since shortened to blogging, is a phenomenon that has its roots in the late 1990s. Today, blogging is so popular that blog services like WordPress account for that a sizeable portion of the internet. As a matter of fact, users create more than 60 million new blogs monthly.
Starting a successful blog will take perseverance and dedication. Your blogging efforts may not help you attain the success of the top six percent of bloggers. These individuals actually make more than 60,000 dollars a year on their blogs, but as long as you put a modicum of effort into your site, you’ll reap some great rewards. Another great thing about earning money through blogs is most people own the tools needed to get started.
Signs of a Successful Blog
There are a plethora of key indicators that can include, high subscriber count, return visits, and shared content. Let’s take a look at each so that we can understand some of the steps to take that go into successful blogging. I think it’s important to note that blogging isn’t an exact science, so while many blogs have these indicators, they aren’t the be–all and end–all requirements for how to be a successful blogger but they will put you on the right track:
• High Subscriber Count: This ensures that your content is being viewed by your audience.
• Return Visits: This is dictated by providing content that is engaging enough to warrant interest in your readers. Consistently using easy to read content that promotes though is really important for building a returning subscriber base.
• Shared Content: This is a great way to build your subscribers. If a user likes your post, it should be shareable so that you can bring in new users.
How to Create a Successful Blog: Getting Started
How to start a successful blog? The first things that you’ll need to identify when learning how to become a successful blogger are your goals. Are you blogging to make an income? Do you just want to establish yourself as an expert? What type of audience are you courting? Each of these questions will dictate your successful blogging experience, so establish your goals carefully.
Find Your Topic or Niche
The next step will be identifying a niche. This is one of the most important steps of how to make a successful blog. A niche that is too small or too competitive will be a waste all your future work. All successful bloggers have a niche that a large audience can identify with. Are you an excellent knitter? Then, you try starting a successful blog for knitting recipes. Do you enjoy talking about the fall season’s top new shows? Then, you can create an entertainment blog with show reviews. Establishing a niche is one of the most important facets of blog creation, so once again, choose wisely.
Also, remember that blogging is very popular. You’ll never create a 100 percent fresh page, but identifying a new twist on an old niche can really help bring you more readers. Don’t want to just create another plain old knitting site? Try something to shake up the paradigm a bit; maybe create a knitting blog for fans of a particular style of knitting.
Pick a Blogging Platform
Many people have no idea about how to make a successful blog from scratch, so blogging platforms will help do a lot of the technical work for you. There are several blog platforms to choose from. Many users will tell you to go for WordPress, but there are other competing platforms to choose from that will work just as well.
There is one outstanding caveat about picking a platform; if you want to have great success, you’ll also need a host. With a hosting platform you can host your WordPress or other type of blog without the need of incorporating the platform’s name into your URL. With a host, your site won’t have to be xxx.Wordpress.com, instead it’ll be able to have a unique URL.
Pick Your Plugins
Many blogging platforms have a myriad of different plugins that will let your directly affect the functionality of your blogging site. WordPress uses plugins for design, user experience, and backend support. For example, if you want to ensure that your pages are readable, you can use a plugin like Hemingway.
If you are simply looking for a great site theme, there are tons of plugins on the market that’ll make you look like a design whiz. You can even create Search Engine Optimization (SEO)-friendly posts by using applications like Yoast.
Find Your Audience
Ideally, your audience will identify because they share an interest in your niche. When this is not the case, you can always tailor your content to reach out to specific groups. Some ways you can tailor your content is by picking your target audience based on:
• Political Leanings
• Education Level
• Where They Are Located
• Whether Your Audience is Single or Married
• Special interests
This type of demographical targeting will help you laser refine your content, so that you’ll know how to be a successful blogger for your visitors. This way, those in the groups that you select will find your content engaging, and most importantly, synchronized with their experience.
Keep Up With Posting
Learning how to create a successful blog isn’t the end of your journey. You’ll have to consistently keep up posts and develop new ways to bring readers back in order to keep them engaged. Nothing turns off loyal readers more than stale content that doesn’t get updated frequently. Many blog readers turn to their favorite blogs before and after work, so if you don’t have engaging material during these times, you’ll start to bleed readers.
Embrace Social Media and Newsletters
Social news feeds are great places for your blog content to appear. Always have a “like” and “share” option on your blog posts. This way, loyal readers can take your insightful posts to their Facebook pages where their friends can also like and share your original content.
In addition to this, using a newsletter program like MailChimp is a great way to remind your readers about the content on your site. I find that forming a mailing list that pushes your content into your reader’s email inboxes is more than half the battle when trying to garner repeat views.
Once you’ve done the above steps, you’re on the path to a learning how to become a successful blogger. These types of endeavors take a lot of work, so the more effort you put into your brand new blog, the more success you will be able to experience. Check out our in depth guide on how to start a blog for a more detailed look at all the steps or our quick start guide on how to setup your blog quickly Now that you have an idea about what you’ll need to do, go out and blog!
We hope you found value in this post about how to start a successful blog. Please post any questions in the comments below. We love to share our knowledge about how to make a blog successful. This is what we do for a living and love to help out new bloggers on their journey to success.
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