How to Start a Blog (And Why It's a Good Idea!)
I’ll bet you’re no stranger to the idea of blogging. You’ve probably come across a post or two that have really helped you out. Maybe you’ve even found yourself wondering, “Should my site have a blog?” If you’ve got a portfolio going for your photography work, an online store, or a resume website, maybe (just maybe) you’ve thought of transforming that humble little site into something more.
Hey, that’s what I did! You’re looking at what used to be my portfolio and resume site. Yep.
So today I’m going to talk about why you might consider upgrading your window to the world by including an avenue for you to reach more people and provide more service than your site is currently, and that is by adding a blog.
Blogging Adds Value
When you envision your website out there in Internetland, it has a certain sphere of influence based on how visible that site is (whether you have a blog or not.) But, when that visibility is in blog content, that means more people from more corners of the web can find your goods at any time because of a little thing called SEO (search engine optimization.) That means when someone types a query into Google, your words have a chance of showing up. Pretty cool, right?
So the more posts you have, and the more keywords you have going on in your blog post titles, and the more helpful your content is to a specific audience ( that’s why niching down is helpful, not harmful!) the better chance you have of surfacing in a search by someone who really needs the goods you’re dishing out.
But Isn’t Blogging Dead?
Blogging might not be the trendiest thing to do right now in the shadow of Facebook Lives and Instagram Stories and algorithms and email marketing, but blogging is still an amazing way to share information. A great way to know if blogging is dead to you is to ask yourself, Have I read a blog post recently? Has a recent search in Google led me to someone else’s helpful post? Because chances are high that you were at someone’s blog, like yesterday.
In my opinion, the big shift that’s happening and the reason people are saying “blogging’s dead!” is more along the lines of the realization now that you don’t need a blog to be successful if you want an online brand or business. Which is huge, because let me reiterate what that means. If you don’t want a blog you don’t have to have one. If you do want a blog, blogging isn’t dead. Yay, right?!
Setting Up a Blog is a Piece of Cake (Really)
Blogs can come in many shapes, forms, and fashions. Look at Tumblr, Blogger, Wix, or Wordpress.com blogs. They can be totally free and simple to setup! But if you want a more professional setup, my personal recommendation is Squarespace or Wordpress.
A really simple checklist to have on deck when you’re setting up a blog is to have these four things:
A name (plus domain name if applicable)
SEO friendly URL slugs (myblog.com/how-to-bake-a-cake versus myblog.com/12-01-22-cake)
A desire to have a blog in the first place (ok, this should probably be #1.)
Beyond that, having great styling, branding, logo, colors, etc are all just a bonus. Because really the whole point of a blog is just to provide valuable content, whatever that means for your niche. To speak to this, I’ll share that I’ve been an avid follower of many, many “ugly” blogs at one time or another, but they provided so much value that I kept coming back.
So it’s a good thing to remember that SEO doesn’t judge by style, it simply reads text. You can absolutely have a gorgeous blog, a beautiful template, or styling that you totally love, but it’s not necessary to have all that in order to get started. Thank goodness for that, right?!
Blogging Can Bring In Your Dream Audience
By talking about the things that you love, whether that’s fashion, food, photography, or travel - you’re saying “Hey world! This is what I love, and I want to connect with others who love this same thing.” Expressing your interests matches you up with others who want the same thing, and voila! A connection is born.
From there, you can cultivate this space where you get to endlessly dream up new ways to express your art, interests, vision, or education in a way that is fun for you, and fun for your audience who gets to devour everything.
Just think of the last time you found someone online who talked about one of your favorite topics. It’s like you just want to bookmark every single post, like each one is a chapter in a really good book. That’s the power of consistent content in bringing in your dream audience right to your virtual doorstep and creating a community that’s eager to devour everything you create.
A Helping Hand to Get Started
Whether you decide to work with a designer to build your blog from the ground up or put together your site DIY style, you can always implement a blog functionality to your site to add more additional value for your audience.
Here are some great resources to get started:
Have you been wanting to create a blog but aren’t sure where to start? Drop a comment below and I’d love to help.