When you set out to create your very own blog, you’re naturally hopeful that you’ll have many readers and visitors to your website. Achieving this, however, is not something that happens overnight. You’ll have to put in the hard work needed to attend to the details of your blog site design, as well as filling your blog with substantial content.
Here are a few practical tips you can follow in order to start a blog that many readers will cherish:
Design your website to be sleek and efficient
Just like when business owners are designing their physical stores, you have to put effort into making sure that your blog is attractive and efficient. Business experts claim that you only successfully make a good first impression in the first few seconds of your meeting with someone. It is the same with blogs. You have to impress your potential readers from the very beginning of their visit.
Having your blog homepage cluttered with too many links, photos, and ads will project a very unprofessional image for you. Seeing an overly busy blog site will make your readers move on to the next blog. To guide you, revisit several blogs that you enjoy reading or looking at. Observe what colors and graphics they use to complement their content. Note the format they follow for their tabs and sidebars. Identify the specific details that you see in these blogs that you appreciate.
After making notes on the blogs that you personally love, see what pointers you can apply in designing and starting a blog. If you want, you may even reach out to the blog owner and ask for tips. Share your initial design and layout ideas, and get a successful blog owner’s opinion of your ideas.
Another tip to make your readers love their visit to your page is to ensure that your blog can be read from all types of devices. In this age of portable devices, it’s a fact that a big chunk of online traffic is through mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Recognizing this trend, you have to cater to all types of devices, making sure that your website adjusts to any screen size of the device being used, and that it’s compatible both with desktop devices as well as touchscreen interfaces.
Make it a priority to clean up your sidebars. Sidebar use should be efficient and concise, such as a helpful highway road sign. You don’t have to hang all your credentials and achievements on the sidebar. Instead, you can simply put short links that direct your readers to different parts of your website, keeping the surface clean and helping the readers focus on what’s important: your main content.
Choose a topic that you love to talk about and are familiar with
Picking a topic that you’re familiar with will greatly boost the chances of success for your blog. You’re more likely to write passionately about a subject that’s important to you, on top of the stock knowledge that you already have on it. When you follow this guideline, it’ll require you less effort to push yourself to write articles about something that fascinates you, and this will usually be reflected on the quality of the content that you’ll publish. Your potential readers may feel this passion emanating from your work. They’ll be encouraged to subscribe and read more of your content regularly.
A common mistake for new bloggers is to pick a popular subject currently, and work from there. The major risk in doing this is that you may run out of ideas, losing traction and consistency. It would take much more effort for someone to write articles about a subject they don’t personally like. This may also be evident in the quality and enthusiasm in the content you’ll be publishing regularly.
When writing about a subject that you like, you’ll always be thinking about it throughout the day. You may get ideas for articles without forcing yourself to produce new content. It’d also be easier for you to interact with readers when you’re familiar and comfortable with your topic. Active and spontaneous interactions with your readers will make them feel welcome, making them love your blog enough to stay and digest more content.
Prioritize quality over quantity
Once you’ve identified the subject or focus of your blog, line up the different ideas that you want to cover in your articles. Rather than churning out content very fast, focus on producing articles that are well-thought out, clearly outlined, and well-written. Even if it means that you’re only releasing a blog once a week or every two weeks, readers will actually appreciate reading blog posts that are meaningful and actually bring forth new knowledge to the table. Excellent content will drive more steady traffic to your blog. More importantly, you’ll be regarded as a trusted expert in your field.
Make your format scan-friendly
Most online readers are in for just a quick digest of information and do not have the time to go through blog posts word per word. The common way of going through online content is for the readers to quickly scan through the topic, gathering only the important points. As such, you have to make your format friendly for this type of reading.
Be sure to use subheaders to bring up key points of the article, keep your paragraphs concise and crisp, and break up your content by using graphics, pictures, and bullet points. You can take inspiration from lifestyle magazines instead of newspaper broadsheets. You want to quickly grab the reader’s attention and keep them hooked.
Find a gap in the market
When deciding on what topic to write about, you may feel intimidated by the thousands of blogs online that cater to the same interests that you have. You may think that the market is already saturated with like-minded individuals, and you will just get lost in a sea of blogs on the same topic. Here comes an interesting fact: it is highly improbable for all these writers to have tackled all the specific issues for your chosen topic.
For instance, there are literally thousands of blogs on guitar playing, but you can find subtopics that cater to classical guitar, proper care for classical guitars, and even more detailed blogs that publish reviews on classical guitar strings!
You’ll always find gaps in the market that you can utilize to start your blog, and addressing these gaps will attract more subscribers who will love your specific topics. A good example of underutilized topics is the “beginner” segment, where you detail what should be known by newcomers to a certain hobby. Lots of posts are out there about advanced and in-depth techniques, but not a lot of writers dedicate their attention to newcomers to their craft. Catering to these beginners can cultivate a good relationship with new readers and may make them love your blog and share your topics to others in social media.
Take care of how you write your “About” page
In working on your blog content, prioritize crafting the writeup on your “About” page. You have to pay attention to doing this well from the very start of your blog. If you want to be loved by readers, they have to know more about you and they have to trust you. For starters, upload a realistic but pleasant photo of yourself. Let others connect to your persona.
Next, tell a short story about yourself. Tell your readers about what you enjoy doing, what you advocate for, and what kind of work you do. Be the blog writer that your target market can easily relate to and keep coming back to.
Again, visit your favorite blogs. How do your favorite writers describe themselves? What information do they have that you can include in your own “About” details? Studying the blogs you love can give you ideas into how you can become a lovable online character as well.
Practice intellectual honesty when you’re writing your blog content
Readers are attracted to and follow truthful writers. This applies to the content you put out there as well as to the integrity you follow if ever you’ll tap into material produced by other writers. For starters, make sure to ask for permission if you plan to use another blog’s photo or quote. Don’t simply cite the source you got the visual from. This may still be considered plagiarism, albeit accidental. Wait for the owner of that photograph to give you their permission.
Practicing intellectual honesty will, in time, contribute to your garnering a steady readership. This is so because readers already know they can trust you to produce content that’s truthful.
If you want a blog that people will resonate with and love, start by finding your passion. Just like with any major undertaking in life, identifying what you’re passionate about is a critical factor to your succeeding and lasting in the blogging world.
The passion that you put into your work will be reflected in the quality of the content that you publish. Writers who are passionate about their subject produce articles that feel more personal. These articles speak of an attachment the writer has to what they’re doing. This, in turn, will be felt by the readers. In a very natural way, make your readers fall in love with the work you put up on your blog.