There are many blogs created everyday. WordPress alone has 73 million registered blogs and growing. We both find blogging fun and a great way to express our thoughts and opinions about certain subjects. We both have been blogging for several years now and we see ourselves blogging for as long as our audience enjoys what we have to share.
During our time as bloggers, we have often seen some people find blogging a frustrating experience and ask what they must do to get people to read their blog and how they can be successful bloggers? Blogging takes a lot of work and planning. No success comes overnight. Experience and a lot of observation and conversation must be taken into consideration before you even start your first blog post. Here are 10 essential ingredients we hope will help guide you on your blogging adventure.
1. Create killer content – No matter how beautiful your blog is, if your content is boring or sub par, no one will come back or even read the rest of your articles. Quality content is crucial to the success of any blog. Write about subjects you are passionate and knowledgeable about. That way ideas will flow easily. Most people just and try to copy styles of the successful blogs without making the effort to come up with their own original ideas. If you only copy styles to get attention, you will eventually run out of ideas.
2. Design must be appropriate with your theme – Setting up your blog properly in the beginning is important. Think of your readers and design your blog appropriately. Some people complicate the design of their blog because they have seen somebody else use a particular design. You can use other blogs as your inspiration, but make sure when you design your blog, you create a pleasing user experience for your reader.
3. Balance copy with images – We always believe that there should be balance between copy and images. Break-up long sections of text with images especially if your blog is text heavy. Be sure to make sure that the image you select is appropriate with the subject you are writing about. There should be a natural flow. Consider the symmetry of how the entire post looks.
4. Check your grammar and spelling – In our article The 8 Steps To Follow Before You Publish Your Next Blog Post, we emphasized the importance of checking your spelling and grammar. People won’t be enticed to read your articles if they are poorly written. No matter how good your idea is, if it is not presented properly then it is a waste of time for you and your readers. Have your readers in mind, respect their time and make it worth their while to keep coming back to your site.
5. Make your articles searchable – Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in search engines. You can easily do this by making sure that you use proper tags. Some people are lazy in not tagging their articles with keywords appropriate for their particular blog post. Some overdo it. The key here is balance. Another way to help your articles become searchable is by making sure you have awesome content. When your content is useful and shareable, people will not have any qualms about sharing it.
6. Take time to write descriptive titles for your blog posts – We cannot emphasize enough how important it is for you to take time in composing a descriptive and inviting title for your articles. Remember the title of your blog post will be the first thing people see. The title should summarize in 8 to 10 words the essence of your post.
7. Give proper credit where credit is due – We are lucky that we are able to produce the images ourselves that we use for our blog. The images are either photos we have taken or images we have designed. On the other hand, for those of you who are planning to use images that you found on the internet, it is always best practice to ask permission or give credit to the owner of that particular image or photo before including it in your post.
8. Make sure your links are working properly - When you refer to a particular idea or content from another website, it is common practice to link to it. Make sure that when you do add a link to your posts, the link actually works. Also, make sure the link opens to a new browser window or tab. This keeps people from automatically leaving your site when navigating to another page linked in your post.
9. Make it easy for your readers to engage with you – The best way to get feedback from your readers is to enable them to share their opinions with you. The only way to do that is by making it easy for them to comment. Some people add captcha for moderation, but this will tend to frustrate your reader and make commenting a tedious process. One of the best things you can do is add plugins to your site to prevent spam comments.
10. Have a proper bio available – It is always good practice to add an author’s bio box so people to get to know who you are. Make sure to include what you like, your interests and your experience in your main areas of knowledge in your bio write-up. Add the social sites you are active in if you like so that your readers can connect with you beyond your blog.
There you go, our 10 essential ingredients to consider. Did we miss anything? Please share your ideas with us here by leaving us a comment. We would love to hear your views.