20 Top Tips That Beginner Bloggers NEED To Hear
Being A New Blogger – It’s Stressful, Overwhelming + Kinda Scary!
You’re stepping out into the world, running your own website, and changing the face of the Internet. Every single blogger has a unique angle and their own spin to put on every topic out there! But being a beginner blogger can feel like jumping in the deep end.
There are literally millions of blog posts claiming to help you start a successful blog, reach your dreams of running a business from home and make more money than you ever would in a day job.
And whilst all of that is totally possible, blogging isn’t a get rich quick scheme. I’ve been blogging for just over a year, and I don’t earn a full-time income. I’ve still gotta work a day job!
It’s my dream to increase my income to the point where I can work from home full-time. However I also want to make sure that I’m stable to do that.
BONUS TIP: Do not rush into quitting your day job or study to blog before you’re earning a regular income and know that you can sustain it!
There’s SO Many Beginner Blogger Tips I Can Share
Learning is a constant when you’re a blogger!
There are so many things that I’ve learnt that work and don’t work since I started All In My Head, and I want to share these with you, in the hopes you can stress a little less, and feel a little more confident.
I reach thousands of people every month with my blog, have hundreds of subscribers, sell copies of my e-book, sell affiliate products and am loving every minute of my journey! I want to share my top tips with you to help you take your blog to the next level, improve your stats and start heading towards your blogging goals.
*This post may contain affiliate links. This means I may earn a small commission from any purchases made, at no extra cost to you. All products/services are recommended because I love + use them myself! Check out my legal notices page for more info*
1. Step Away From The Free Blog Sites
The first step is a big one! If you want to start a successful blog and make an income from it, then you’re going to need a professional starting point.
Whilst you can use free sites like WordPress.com and Blogger to start your blog, you will struggle to monetise your site using them. You don’t get the flexibility of hosting your own website, and you won’t be able to use ads and some other monetisation methods on a free site.
I advise using SiteGround to host your blog. They provide really affordable plans and you get great support and a free SSL certificate (which gives your site https://). Your blog will be super speedy, secure and professional!
To get started, simply go to the SiteGround website, choose a plan and set up an account. Then you just need to decide on your domain name or transfer your current one across and then download WordPress.
You can be up and running in less than half an hour, and if anything tech-related confuses you, their guys are there to help. You’ll have a professional website that’s fully customisable with themes – it’s the foundation to a proper online biz!
I’ve used SiteGround to host my blog for the past 6 months and I’ve been so happy with the service. Having a speedy load time for your site also helps with SEO, so there’s a boost there too!
Having a professional blog that you are the certified owner of is such a great feeling, and will be vital as you go through the different stages with your blog.
2. Choose Your Niche At The Start And Stick With It!
It’s really quite important to settle on an area of expertise before you get started writing and sharing blog posts.
Once readers start coming to your blog, they will expect you to continue to write about similar things. If you completely change it up, you might lose that audience you’ve built up, and confuse people!When it comes to writing a successful blog, you have to write for your readers, not for yourself. #bloggingtips #newblogger Click To Tweet
It is much easier to build and keep an audience if you focus on what topic and keep writing about that.
Make sure it’s something you’re passionate about and can see yourself writing about it in 2, 5 and even 10 years time! It’s going to be difficult to stay motivated if you don’t love your topic.
Whilst you don’t have to literally write about one topic for the rest of your blogging career, it’s important to narrow down your focus. Staying within the same area will ensure your readers respect you as an authority in your field.
3. Design Your Blog With Love + Care
Your blog is like a portfolio, and showcases your skills. If you love to write, and maybe want to write for a living, then you need to package this up in the best way possible.
Your website is a huge reflection of you – the care you take in creating it will definitely show.
Take the time to choose a premium theme that will make your blog and business look professional and interesting – Creative Market is a great place to start if you’re not sure where to get one from.
Spend time learning how to dress up your content so that it shines!
It’s really important to choose the design of your blog carefully, and make sure that you are showcasing your talents in the most appealing way possible.
Whether we like it or not, we are judged on how things look – and when it comes to your blog you need to make sure you’re giving off the best impression.
4. Concentrate On Your Blog Post Titles
When it comes to starting to write your blog posts, it’s sometimes difficult to write the title, and you might end up scrimping your time spent on it.
This isn’t a good move!
Taking the time to write compelling, interesting blog post titles is NOT a waste of your time. It’s the biggest thing that encourages readers to actually click on to your blog.
Remember, most of the time, people come to your blog from some kind of external source. Whether it’s social media, search engine results or from your emails – they are clicking because the title gives them something they are looking for.
You need to make people want to know what’s being shared inside, without giving away the punchline. For example, with this post, the title is 20 Top Tips That Beginner Bloggers Need To Know. This grabs beginner bloggers’ interest and makes them want to know what they need to know!
You could also directly ask a question with your blog title, something like “Do you want to know the best tips for a new blogger?”.
Either way, you’re encouraging the reader in. You’re making them desire the outcome, which is the focus of your content.
Other Things To Consider With A Blog Title
- Ensure that people can’t ignore the post, by giving them a lead. You want to show that inside the post is information that they just cannot pass by!
- Use different types of posts through out your blog. You could use “How To” posts, or lists of things like this one. Mix it up to make sure that you’re appealing to all kinds of people.
- Use language that people cannot ignore! Things like “Must See” and words like “incredible” and “amazing” all draw people in and make them want to click through.
5. Lay Your Blog Posts Out In An Appealing Way
Once you’ve written a kick arse title, you’re going to want to think about how you lay out your content.
Writing blog posts is totally different to any other kind of writing that you may have learnt at school. And the way that you need to package your information is constantly changing.
When laying out your blog post, you’re going to need to make sure that the information is spread out. Don’t bunch everything up into one huge paragraph – this makes the blog post uninteresting to read and puts people off!
Use headers, bullet points, bold or italic font, and other kinds of formatting to break things up. You can also use things such as photos, graphs, infographics and videos to avoid being boring with your articles.
Remember that in this day and age, people are used to getting their content fast, and without excess baggage. Make things as easy as possible for your readers and they will thank you for it!
6. Grab The Social Media Handles That Relate To Your Domain Name FAST
As mentioned in point one, you need to get your domain name. When doing this, it’s a good idea to check that the biggest social media platforms have that name available for you to take too!
You can use this amazing site called Namecheckr that basically checks whether the availability of social media handles.
When you decide on a domain name, simply put that name into the website and it will show whether related names are available.
It takes all the stress out!
Getting the social media handles that relate to your domain name is actually really important and makes a professional and cohesive brand.
7. Don’t Stress About Perfection + Comparing Yourself To Others
When you first start blogging, it can be really easy to get wrapped up in trying to be perfect.
Being the “perfect blogger” can seem like a goal that you can’t wait to achieve. You look at all the other bloggers on social media and see all their success and the style of their content.
It can be really hard to stop yourself from getting sucked in to all that.
However, there is literally no point in comparing yourself to other bloggers!
Your blog is completely yours, and you’ve built it up from the bottom. Everything that you’re creating is unique and you should be so proud of that fact.
Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing – just focus on being the best you can be. People prefer reading content from people who do their own thing. It’s more interesting and varied that way.
Plus, it’s much better for your own mindset if you concentrate on your own skills, and the work you are doing. Practice being content with your own journey, and you’ll find that you’re much happier that way.
8. Interlink Your Blog Posts – EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.
Once you’ve written your blog post, take the time to go back through your article and check for opportunities to link to other posts you’ve written.
There’s a couple of reasons why this is helpful.
- It helps your readers get around your blog. When someone finishes reading one of your blog posts, if they’ve enjoyed it they will want to read something else! Make sure that you make this easy for them by leaving links to blog posts in relevant places.
- It encourages people to stick around. Not only does it help when people do want to read another post, but it actually encourages them to do so. Use a call to action such as – “Read this blog post next, on how to..” and your readers will be compelled to read on.
- It’s great for your blog’s SEO. By linking relevant posts together, it helps boost your blog’s search engine optimisation. Search engines get to see that your posts link to related content and this boosts their chances of being shown to the right people.
Even if you’ve already got lots of posts written but haven’t done this yet, go back through today and just add some related links in.
9. Don’t Take Every Opportunity Just Because It’s There
Blogging can bring lots of different opportunities your way. When you start creating and putting things out there, you can start to grow a following.
Brands and companies may be interested in using your audience to promote their products and services.
As such you may end up receiving lots of emails regarding different opportunities to earn money from your website in a variety of ways.
Whilst this is great, and can mean you are on your way to earning a living from your blog, I wanna advise you to be careful as you move into this territory with your business.
Not every opportunity is created equal!
You have to be wary of giving your personal details to every person that emails you – it might be a scam.
There are also things that might sound good on the surface but might not actually be the right thing for you and your business plan.
Take time to investigate, and make sure you’re completely happy with the terms you are agreeing to.
10. Take Notes. With An Actual Pen + Paper
This is something that you might not see the value in, until you start doing it yourself.
Of course, I love technology and using computers (as a blogger that’s kinda obvious!), but I also have a huge affinity for good old pen and paper.
There’s something that really helps the information go in when I write it down, and that’s gotta be a good thing! When I start a new job or I’m getting trained on something, I always write it down because I know how much it helps me.
If you haven’t already tried it, just give it a go and see whether it helps.
When you’re reading blog posts, scrolling through Pinterest, or just out in the real world, take notes on the things that inspire, motivate and interest you. It will help with blog posts NO END.
11. Finish Your Blog Post, Proofread Afterwards
If you get in the writing mood, and you have that info that needs to get written, just do it. Get it all out and worry about editing afterwards.
Once inspiration hits, it can be really aggravating to keep stopping and correcting yourself!
I like to edit as I go most of the time, and then do a good read through at the end. I edit the whole post overall, making sure that it flows and I’m actually making sense.
But sometimes you just get those creative juices really flowing, and you don’t want to stop every couple of minutes to edit yourself.
Let the words flow out, and then go back after and tidy up as necessary. Your brain will thank you for it.
12. Start An Email List + Keep Working On It
This is something that I actually find quite difficult. I love growing my email list, but at the same time it can feel a little stressful.
Growing an email list is super important to the success of your blog, and it’s something you should keep improving upon constantly as your blog grows.
I have 600+ email subscribers, and whilst that might not seem a lot to some people, it literally blows my mind that I have that many people on my list.
It’s been around 6 months since I got serious about my list, maybe a little longer, but I am still super proud of how far it’s come since then.
I have grown my list consistently each month, from my opt-in forms that you’ll find throughout my blog posts and in my sidebar. There is also a pop-up form that I use, which definitely helps boost my numbers.
Take the time to get to grips with an email service provider. I use MailerLite – they are just amazing. So simple to use, beautiful sign up forms, and they are free for your first 1000 subscribers!
Create forms and place them within your content. Offer PDFs or other downloadable content in exchange for email addresses. Write your email subscribers as often as you like, but you’re aiming for at least once a month, and preferably once a week.
Once you’re more comfortable, you can look at using your list to make money from your blog. But you need that solid foundation, so get that right first.
If you need more help, I have these blog posts on email marketing that are worth checking out:
13. Read, Read, READ Other Blog Posts
Now, I want to be absolutely clear here – I DON’T MEAN TAKING THESE POSTS AND STEALING THEIR CONTENT.
This is never okay.
What I mean, is use other blogger’s content for study purposes. Learn everything you can about the blogging community, the things that are advancing within the space, and how you can become a more successful blogger.
Someone out there always has more experience than you, and thankfully due to the growing amount of bloggers and writers out there, you can soak up that knowledge!
Make sure you’re keeping up to date with things.
I like to keep Twitter lists with my favourite bloggers, so that I can easily navigate to their content. I also use bookmarks on my phone so I can jump to my favourite blogs if I ever need some inspo or just want to get caught up on the latest.
The more you learn and take things in, the better blogger and writer you’ll be. It’s like giving your brain training, and you won’t regret making the effort. Drop a comment whilst you’re there and help boost your blog’s reach!
14. Write As Often As You Can + Schedule Your Posts In Advance
It makes life so much easier!
As I’ve mentioned above, sometimes you really get in the mood for writing, and you have lots of ideas. Use that time to your advantage.
Write lots of blog posts whenever that mood strikes and schedule them in advance.
Aim for two a week, but this isn’t a hard and fast rule – plan them for whatever works best for you and your audience.
The more you have in reserve, the less stress you will inevitably feel.
By having posts ready to go, it also means that if you’re struggling to come up with ideas or you don’t have a lot of time for a while, your blog won’t go into shut down.
I try to write at least once a week, but it’s not always that easy. Having things ready means I can worry about other things sometimes, and put less pressure on myself to be writing constantly.
15. Get Rid Of Distractions When It’s Blog Time
This one is definitely easier said than done!
But it is important to try to focus solely on your blog when you’re actually working on your blog, and avoid distractions.
The biggest one I find is my phone.
I’ll be writing away, and all of a sudden I’ll somehow be scrolling through Twitter, and I won’t even realise I’ve done it.
I have to actively try to avoid distractions, so I know how hard this can be.
- Put do not disturb on your phone so you stop receiving notifications
- Move your phone to another room so you’re not tempted
- Have a separate ‘blogging space’ or office where you work ONLY
- Go to a cafe so that you can have some space and work from a neutral space
- Put headphones on and play calming, relaxing music
Whatever works best for you!
16. Use A Calendar/Diary For Planning And To Do Items
Being organised and planning your time efficiently can make all the difference in how your blog runs. Turning a blog into a success and maybe making an income from it doesn’t tend to happen by accident.
Get in the habit of keeping track of everything. This might be on your phone or in a physical diary; it doesn’t matter as long as it helps YOU stay organised.
Every time something pops in your head or someone says something to you that you need to remember – get it in the calendar!
As you grow your blog into a business, this will become vital. You must stay on top of your plans and important deadlines if you want to be known as reliable and professional.
Make things as simple as possible to stay on top of your game, and you’ll thank yourself a thousand times.
17. Automate The Things That You Don’t Really Need To Be Present For
This is something that professional bloggers do on a huge scale. It frees up your time for the more important and exciting sides of your business, and means that you can focus.
There are so many tools that help you do this, and it might take some trial and error to find the ones that work for you and your online biz.
Social media auto-posting schedulers are a great place to start, because being online and sharing regularly on all your profiles can be a huge time suck.
Here are some of the most used and recommended:
You can also make sure of an editorial calendar for your blog. This helps you plan ahead and schedule posts to be published on your blog when it suits you and your lifestyle.
I use a plugin for WordPress simply called Editorial Calendar, which does the job without being over complicated. Simply download, and it will create a new option under your posts option on the left hand side of the WordPress dashboard.
Click on ‘Calendar’ and see the current month set out in front of you. You can create drafts, schedule them, and even write a text copy of a post from this screen. Drag and drop to move the posts around with such ease!
Whatever you do, take some time and get set up with some simple automated tools to help you run your blog and biz more efficiently.
18. Try Not To Get Obsessed
Joining the blogging community is like joining a huge club of like-minded people with an interest in writing, sharing their expertise and being awesome creatives.
The only trouble is that it can be really easy to become a little too obsessed with your blog.
If you’re forgetting to eat, shower and do your house work because you’re glued to your laptop, then please, take a break! You need to make sure you are still looking after yourself and your home.
I remember the first few months I could barely concentrate in the day because I was thinking about my blog and the things that I could do with it.
My mind was so focused on making plans and planning my business, that I kinda forgot to concentrate on other things. I was staying up until the early hours of the morning, and I wasn’t eating properly.
Whilst getting involved with blogging is extremely exciting, and honestly one of the best things I’ve ever done, you need to make sure that it doesn’t take over your life.
(Ironically I’m finishing this post off at gone midnight – but it’s a Friday night so I’m allowing myself a late one for the first time in a while! Don’t judge me…)
19. Learn That Selling Doesn’t Have To Be Slimy
You might want to make money from your blog, but most of us have that innate feeling that people who are there to sell are slimy.
Honestly, it is not true! You don’t have to feel bad about offering your products and services to your readers.
As long as you are honest about what you are offering, and show people the benefits of what you’re showing them, you’re more than likely to receive positive comments only.
Don’t ever feel like you’re not entitled to attempt to sell to your audience!
If you have something that people will gain from, and you know you can help people, then please do not hide that. Get yourself out there and see for yourself that it doesn’t have to be sleazy.
20. And Finally… Enjoy It!
Starting a blog is a huge step – you’ve leapt out of your comfort zone and you’ve begun something that could be really amazing.
Blogging is genuinely one of the best things I’ve ever got involved with, and I love the feeling it gives me.
I am extremely proud of All In My Head and my other baby blog, Laura The Blogger, because they’re all mine.
Creating them was completely down to me, and I have learnt the hard way how to make things work. When I first started blogging, I had never heard of WordPress, and my first few blog posts were seriously TERRIBLE looking back.
But I persevered!
I taught myself how to make a website work, how to write informative blog posts that help my readers, and how to grow an online community.
Remember that you chose to start a blog because you have a passion for something and you want to share that with the world. Never feel that you’re blog isn’t a fun thing to do – you’re getting your creativity and your expertise out there!
Everyone has something to offer, and you can use your website as an outlet for that passion inside you.
I hope you’ve found this blog post really helpful, and are interested in growing your blog into a business.
If you would like more blogging tips on how to build a profitable blog, join up for my free 7 day blogging course below: