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WHY I STARTED BLOGGING?
It is so amazing to look at my blog statistics. I remember when I started blogging I had no idea what blogging was and what you do when you blog. Yea, I was a bit ignorant on that side of the fence.
So, here I was unemployed, depress, broke with no way out, Sad! But guess what I did, I prayed. Yes, I prayed so hard I said God please I am begging you show me a sign, I am tired and hopeless I need a breakthrough. What we fail to realize is that sometimes our problems are so hard we believe that we have the worse life and going through the worst situations. But there is always someone who is worse off than you, trust me.
One day while searching Pinterest which I had no idea how to use, I discovered blogging. I believe it was a pin from Chasing Foxes on how she used blogging to make thousands. It took me couple days to finally say I am just gonna shut my eyes and pay for my domain and hosting from HOSTGATOR, luckily I got a ridiculous discount and ended paying only $36 for everything.
Believe me; HOSTGATOR gives crazy discounts. You can self-host your blog for little or nothing. They are amazing; I love Hostgator, have never had a problem with them at all since I have been blogging.
They keep you updated and with 24hr customer service. They offer great help with SEOs and ways to maximize your potential. They do provide an affiliate program so you can definitely make money with Hostgator by recommending a friend.
UPDATE: MY PAGEVIEWS ARE CONSTANTLY INCREASING IT’S HARD TO KEEP TRACK, I AM NOW UP TO 100,000
- How to start a WordPress Blog
- Tools & Tips For A Successful Blog
- How I Made Over $5,000 Extra Online As A Waitress
- How I made $113 3rd month Bogging
10 TIPS TO MAKE MONEY BLOGGING
I can tell you when I started blogging I was getting around 250 page-views and then 100 and then 10, 20 and sometimes 5. I’m laughing because I remember how frustrating it was. But what I did was stop worry about and started doing things to change it.
I know many of you read blog reports and articles on how to grow your blog and make money. In most cases, you see some of the same things over and over. But are you implementing the tips correctly, or are you just saying no I don’t want to hear that cause that won’t help me?
What you need to do is read the articles thoroughly and take every practical advice and use it. Use it to the best of your ability, and you will see what you read and learn to make practical sense.
1. SELF HOSTING
I can not stress how important this is. If you have a free WordPress blog or any free blog for that matter, you’re starting on the wrong path and need to switch to self-hosting Asap. You can switch to HOSTGATOR and get your hosting for just $3 by using my link. If you are already on a different hosting service and want to switch, HostGator makes it ridiculously easy to do so.
No hassle they will do everything for you. I got my sister to register her blog with Hostgator, and she got hosting for ONLY $36 for 12 months including a domain name for only $5. You cannot beat that.
Web Site Hosting Bundle: Get Your Domain, Hosting, and Unlimited Email for Just $3/mo!
2. CREATE USEFUL AND GREAT CONTENT
I know most people want to blog and blog about their day at work or probably their dog or cat. Try to incorporate things people would be interested in on a daily basis like Problem Solving.
How to lose weight Or How to become Vegan, you can do this while writing about your personal life if that suits you or you can build your audience then slowly incorporate this. I don’t want to say don’t blog about your personal life, but if you want to, why not do both.
I don’t want to say don’t personalize your blog too much because that depends on the future of your blog. Think about your goals and future goals of your blog and what you ultimately want to do with it.
Personally, I want to grow my blog big into something that people look forward to visiting daily. Like, e.g. GoodHouskeeping or BuzzFeed. Sometimes you have to think big, aim for the sky and you will grab the moon.
No one wants to read articles that don’t quite offer any insight, facts, solution and proof. When I started blogging, I did not have a clue, and that’s ok we are all here to learn. If you want to offer personal advice, that’s fine.
Just make sure it’s factual, it works, it makes sense and that you have proof to your story. Your style of writing says a lot about the writer, and it makes your readers feel connected. Some may like it; some may not.
Have you ever notice your bounce rate in Google Analytics. This actually provides information on how long your readers stay on your articles. “it is the percentage of visitors to a particular website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page”.
If your bounce rate is too high, then something is causing them to leave quickly. Maybe they find your website or articles boring.
I notice many bloggers post their analytics with thousands of views and their bounce rate is over 80% that is not okay. No Bueno! My bounce rate is pretty good for all my articles and my website in general. It usually fluctuates between 9 and 10 percent.
I am concerned about my readers and regularly read my blog over and over to just to see what I can improve on. Not only that I ensure that my website is easily navigable and looks very attractive and readable. Not all will like it, but if the majority does, then that’s what counts.
You can research by using BuzzSumo; this is a powerful online tool that allows any user to find out what content is popular by topic or on any website. BuzzSumo is an excellent tool in helping to generate content ideas, find out the most shared content and see how competitive keywords are for your blog. Another way is to visit your favorite blogger’s website or top websites within your niche and analyze trending topics. Pinterest, Flipboard and Facebook can also give inspiration on blog topics.
From my personal experience, I have gotten a ton of traffic by just posting articles that are in demand and clickable. For e.g. I posted an article 20+ Broke and Depressed, to be honest, I really loved that article because it resonates with my struggles. Unfortunately, not many people resonated with this hence, its one of my least popular article, sadly.
However, when I posted 20 Fun Date Ideas That Are Free my first viral pin, this article got a lot of views, still, has the topmost views out of all my articles.
3. POSTING CONSISTENTLY
Thinking that you can just post one article once a week will not give you consistent traffic and won’t necessarily increase your page views when you are a new blogger. Before you launch your website make sure to have at least 30 to 50 blog post.
When I started blogging my intention was to create my articles then launch. Unfortunately, the ignorance in me could not allow that, because I launch my blog without knowing what I was doing.
So during the creation of my blog, it was live, and I had no idea at the time how to “turn it off” I know funny huh? But funny enough I got 250 page views with an unfinished blog in one day. I guess that’s why after the 250 no one came again because there was nothing.
See, what I am saying? After you have gotten enough content out there, then you can slow down on the number of articles you write per week.
Tip: What works for me was creating a lot of content and just sending them to TAILWIND. This made my traffic increased significantly; I got 500 page views overnight just by using Tailwind the first night.
4. POST ATTRACTIVE TITLES AND IMAGES
PicMonkey is a charm; it’s so easy to transform your images into good-looking pins and collages. I use pic monkey only because it satisfies all my needs in just one place. And I won’t forget to mention that you can get a free trial. If after the one week trial you wish not to purchase you still can use it for free.
Of course, like many programs or software you have a free limited version and a full version which you pay for. PicMonkey charges you $4.99 a month or $33 a year for the paid version.
I am going to show how having better titles that go with great images can significantly increase your page views. When I started, I was posting any image that goes with my article to PINTEREST, no clue what I was doing. I wouldn’t get a view or click.
My traffic came from Google or Facebook only. What I did was search numerous viral pins and look to see what stands out. I didn’t recreate their pins, but I made it better. Ever since then my pins got triple repins thus doubling my traffic.
What also worked was creating more than one pin for each post. I posted so many pins ended up getting viral pins from my second pin. I will show you an example.
If you like to try out PicMonkey free trial CLICK HERE
Example of long vertical pins
Not that this pin wasn’t ok. But this is a perfect example why you should create more than one images for Pinterest. This pin did not get over 100 repins not even close. But when I used another pin, that pin instantly went viral. 500 or more repins is considered viral.
This one did the trick.
THIS IS IMPORTANT!!!
Wait before I move on, what is also important is having a Pinterest “PIN IT” button so visitors can pin your images to their boards straight from your websites. This is why having great images will get you noticed easily. Many of my viral pins are not repin on my Pinterest board or group boards but from pins straight from my website by visitors.
5. KNOW SEO’S
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s outstanding results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results, according to Wikipedia.
To gain organic traffic from Google, you will need to optimize your website/blog for SEO. There is a method to this madness and believe me, SEO is not that easy. I have been studying SEO’s for 2 months and still not that good at it.
However, WordPress makes it easier for you to install the plugin WordPress SEO by Yoast, that will guide you when writing your content to ensure that your keywords are planted in relevant parts of your post.
N.B.: Plain and Simple always use KEYWORDS within your Pinterest, posting and image description. Have you ever seen that box called “ALT TEXT” when adding your images to your articles in WordPress? Yes! Please ensure you put keywords in your images so they can rank highly on Google. You can download the plugin SEO Friendly Images.
6. JOIN PINTEREST
Pinterest is a fantastic platform for bloggers. It’s bloggers paradise. 90% of my traffic comes from Pinterest. Pinterest is the best; you can share all your content with the whole world. What makes it better and more competitive than other social media networks is that your content/pins never die, they continue to grow over time and because of this, your blog can grow even more.
You can sign up for Pinterest RIGHT HERE
Join group boards
Get on group boards. This is VERY IMPORTANT. To find group boards, you can use PINGROUPIE or go on your favorite bloggers Pinterest profile and look at the GroupBoards they have joined and try to see if you can get on a few of their boards. It is hard and frustrating but, do not give up. You might be turned down, but “nothing beats a trial than a failure”.
Make your boards more attractive
I suggest organizing your boards and make them look attractive with viral and engaging pins to be exact. The more repins your board has; the more Pinterest recognizes this.
The thing is, people, love to click on attractive things, I know your content can be killer but if your image sucks then people don’t read it simply because the cover wasn’t that appealing or clickable. Most Pinterest users judge the book by the cover before they click.
Add a “Best of (Your Pinterest Name) board” this board will have all of your fabulous pins. I can’t tell you how my Best of board pins have more impression that even my group boards.
Adding Keywords to your boards
Select a good name for your boards that contains keyword/s. In the description section of your board, make sure to add relevant keywords so your board can be searchable.
Verify your website on Pinterest
When I started using Pinterest, I did not verify my site because I did not know how to and when I try countless times It just didn’t work. I emailed Pinterest, and they manually verified it for me. Thank God! I would suggest not to paste the HTML to your blog because you will lose it eventually when you update or change your blog theme.
I recommend using the plugin “Insert header and footer” add the code to the plugin then head back to Pinterest to verify it, and that’s it. It should verify. If your still having problems just contact Pinterest.
Verifying your site makes a huge difference, your analytics will be sent to Pinterest, and they will have an analytics of how well your blog is doing with Pinterest.
After I had verified my website, I got an increasing amount of followers and repins. I think this is because it makes your pins looked professional and official. Here is an example of a verified blog on Pinterest.
When viewing other pinners pin you would see “FOLLOW” instead of “THAT’S YOU.”
Add Rich Pins
Rich pins make your pins stand out among other regular pins. It includes details about your pins, website and a pin description. Below is an example of a rich pin.
Be active and pin every day. Follow pinners who interest you and engage yourself with other pinners. This will give you more followers and repins. Make sure to pin more of other people’s content. I think the rule is 80/20.
Tailwind is a pin scheduling tool for bloggers. It helps manage Pinterest accounts by automatically spreading new pins over ideal pinning hours. Other features include Scheduler, Looping, and Campaigns.
The benefits are endless with board booster; you will see an increase in followers, repins and page views. How awesome! I love BoardBoosted it’s my bread and butter. If you’re wondering I do actually prefer Tailwind over Tailwind. BoardBooster is way easier, and it does the job great, no problems there. Tailwind is too technical, and I have to check it because it runs out of pins regularly.
The only thing I dislike about BoardBooster is that the secret boards pop up whenever I add pins to boards, so I tend to have a lot of scrolling. Without this Tailwind would be TOTALLY WINNING!
If you would like to sign up for BoardBooster and receive 100 free pins CLICK HERE
(You know that I think Pinterest needs a post by itself lol) There is so much to learn about Pinterest. However, I just touch on the most important things.
I love Grammarly!!! The best thing since sliced bread. I am not good at English, trust me, I have tried, and I never seem to perfect it when written. My biggest problem is writing in the American English rather than the Queens English which I was taught. Grammarly provides revision for both types of English, British and American.
Around 80% of my audience is American. Hence, I would want to write in the American English, but I think I will stick to my native tongue for now. Don’t Judge me I am Jamaican I have an excuse lol.
I use Grammarly to help me write my articles better and correct my grammatical errors and improve my vocabulary skills. As a blogger mistakes are inevitable but with Grammarly, you can make it perfect without any worries. So easy and efficient.
Don’t forget if Google notices too many grammar errors it won’t rank you on Google at all.
Grammarly offers a free trial version If you like to try Grammarly CLICK HERE
8. LIMIT SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS
I know your probably saying, well then how am I going to get an audience if I don’t join as many social platforms to get viewers. My understanding is that most bloggers are moms, dads some work at home, some in an office. We have so much going on in our lives.
How will you start a successful blog and manage 10 social media at the same time? No!!! When I started, I did just that, and I soon realise that it was draining. ( I don’t have a child, and I really don’t have much to do seeing that I am stuck inside) So, I can just imagine someone trying to juggle all of this at once.
Take my ‘Foolish Advice” find where your target audience is and focus on that platform/s limit yourself to 2 for now and try to master it. After mastering those platform then you’re in the lead to expanding.
StumbleUpon is gold. If you ever go viral on Stumble God bless your soul. I found out about StumbleUpon just a few days ago and boom there was all this traffic. What is StumbleUpon you ask? Well, this is a web search engine that finds and recommends web content to its users.
What it does is basically allow users to stumble upon random content that is in the user’s interest. It allows them to like, dislike, share the content and the option to add to a list (like a folder) of their saved content. If not they can just stumble and stumble on till they find anything that interests them. The more likes the content gets, the more it stumbles upon a wider audience.
Downfall: It may drop your bounce rate.
10. FACEBOOK GROUPS
I have heard of many bloggers gaining success from joining Facebook groups and it is true. I have a joined a few and I can say at least one has helped me to gain massive repins and page views. The rest mainly helps with questions and answers and information that may help bloggers along the way. I suggest finding a great facebook group that resonates with your niche and make use of it.
I personally have not tried Link Parties, Guest Posting or Contribution to other blogs. What I listed is what I used and is what has been working for me thus far until I move further up.
(LET ME LEAVE YOU WITH AN EXTRA TIP)
Email listing is a great marketing strategy to build and grow a successful blog over time. If you’re a new blogger, it would still be an excellent idea to install a free email marketing tool so you can start collecting emails now. Don’t wait until you become successful and traffic started pouring in.
By that time you should have enough emails to create an email campaign and update users on your blog or sell products and services you might want to offer down the line.
I sign up with Mailchimp because of the free version. MailChimp – Free Version up to 2,000 email subscribers you can’t lose with this free option. Simply install a lead magnet to such as a Signup box for your visitors. By signing up for MAILCHIMP, they can help you with making your own signup box.
I really hope you read through thoroughly because you may lose out on some very useful tips if you didn’t.
I am broke so, to be honest, I do not have the money to purchase Elite Blogging Academy (EBA) or any course for that matter. I have heard many great things and EBA and how well it can help new or even bloggers who have been blogging for a while. Every cent I make for my blog has to go towards expenses for the time being until I maximise my income potential, but remember just take things at a pace that won’t get you burnt out.
By using these tips, your blog will grow, and you will be surprised, just stop stressing and allow your growth to spur on its own.
How Much Money I Made So Far
Well, if you’re like me you definitely don’t want to put your eggs in one basket so I got a job as a waitress since working at the front desk just wasn’t pulling in enough money for me. So, yes I am a waitress and a blogger making a decent salary. Not only does blogging gives me a lot more money in my pocket, it actually pays my rent so my wage I earn from my fulltime job is mine to keep. Woot! Woot!
Acorn (I have saved a buncha money investing my round-ups)
Ibotta (Cash Back Rewards)
Ebates (Cash Back Rewards)
Other affiliate programs
Izea (Sponsored Post)
So far I have made over 5,000 blogging since I started to monetize my blog. The sad part about it was that I made this much without doing much. as I told you I was quite a mess and I had stopped blogging for months but I was still making money. How cool is that? Many bloggers give the idea that everyone wants to quit their jobs, but not many want that. Most people just like to earn more or even have something to supplement their income, because clearly, they love what they do or they just don’t want to stay home and work. I don’t know, everyone is different. To each to his own.
In my honest opinion, you can make a living from blogging if your dedicated and determine whether it be part-time or full-time. I for one can attest to that. If you had told me months ago that blogging would have paid my rent every month I would have said you’re lying. I learnt that if you want something you ought to go get it, don’t sit and expect anyone or anything to come and save you, save yourself.
I can tell you that starting your blog would be one of the best experience you ever had. Having a blog is not easy but its fun and rewarding. Not only is it fulfilling but it’s lucrative, depending on how hard you work. You reap only what you sow, right?
Just don’t delay and miss out on future earnings. Sign up with HOSTGATOR , don’t be the one to be sobbing a few months later, wishing you had started your blog. You know that few months down the line you could be making $1,000 a month or more. With HOSTGATOR it’s easy and cheap, guarantee you can’t find a better deal.
My blog stats and growth so far below. I remember in my article How I went from 0 to 14,000 page views overnight. I stated that I wanted to achieve 30,000 page views in my 6th month of blogging and make my first income. Well, I achieved that and more. I am so excited for this new journey.
UPDATE: I AM NOW UP TO 100,000