Thursday, 5 September 2013

five top tips for new bloggers










Today's prompt is 'pass on some useful advice or information you learned and always remembered.'

It's day three and I found this prompt a little tricky when I sat down to write it. I sat with my coffee by the laptop and suddenly it came to me. As a fairly new blogger, less than eighteen months, I have learned some really useful tips that have really helped me with my blog. 

This is my advice if you are starting a new blog; it's not all you need to know but it may help.

Choose your blog name carefully.
When I started to create a blog, I tried to think ahead. I wanted to be able to use the same name for all the social media even though I may not use them all straightaway. Picking a name is tricky. I tried all sorts of word play, looking in many places for inspiration. I had a handful of ideas and I tried each of them on various social media sites and web addresses to see if that name had been taken. I had two or three ideas and settled on one that worked for me.

Get your own domain name.
This is worth the time and little money it costs to do. You own the blog. Also, owning your own domain name gives you credibility. I chose to use Blogger to create and host my site as I wanted to be able to get underway as quickly and simply as possible. You do have more flexibility if you build your own website. However, in truth I have been able to do pretty much what I wanted with Blogger using tweaks and tips I found on the internet.

Select your template carefully.
That fancy template that looks so great on the day you start may, twelve months down the line, drive you mad with its frills and fancies. I chose a simple template and just modified the background with a motif that I wanted to use for everything. I also wanted a template that was easy to leave a comment on. You can try out all of your ideas on a test blog (under a different name) before you launch.

Use your images to best effect.
Images for me are important on any blog. They draw my attention straightaway. A fifty pound compact camera can take images acceptable for a blog; I know because I've done it. Make the most of your images. Unless you are an ace photographer, your photos will need a little tweaking. Even a simple and free editor like Photoscape can just tweak the contrast, the brightness, the colour balance or whatever it takes to make sure your photographs have the maximum impact.

Personally, I like to see larger images and preferably all the same width. I use Photoscape to resize all of mine to 650 pixels which is about two thirds of the whole page.

Be consistent
Decide how often you want to post, being realistic about what you can manage. I post four times a week which keeps me very busy! If you can only manage twice a week, fine, but do it consistently. Your visitors will be looking for your posts.

Wherever your visitors choose to meet you, your blog, Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, they should be able to recognise your style straightaway, from the appearance of the page to what you post.

Finally, be nice to people, be honest and enjoy it. I have met a lot of lovely people since I started blogging and hope to meet many more. I hope these tips have given you a few pointers if you are just starting out.

Happy Thursday


10 comments:

  1. Hi Rachel - I'm 4 months in so these suggestions are really helpful, thankyou! I also use Blogger for my blog and I'm getting to the stage that I want to streamline the look of it...I got a little button crazy to start with!!

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    1. Hi, thanks for stopping by and commenting. I just wrote about the things I felt I have learned from my own experience. There are all kinds of different approach but thee worked for me. I'm glad I put in the upfront time :)

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  2. Great tips...
    I haven't been brave enough to buy my own domain name yet! One day....lol

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    1. Thanks Kim, I'm sure you will be brave enough one day :-)

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  3. nice simple tips. my blogging hobby totally turned into a photography hobby. i love it.

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    1. Thanks very much, I'm glad you liked them. I'm much more into photography now, I'm always snapping away :-)

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  4. I'm not consistent in posting -_- I just blog when I have a post ready. I did give a lot of thought to my blog's name (if you can believe it ;) ) but not much to the rest. I just finally wanted to start doing what I'd wanted to for two years!! Great tips!

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    1. I love the title of your blog, it reminds me of yummy things. Glad you like the tips :-)

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  5. Great advice. I have blogged since 2008 but still feel like a novice.

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    1. Thanks so much, I'm glad you like the tips. I still feel like I'm learning something new everyday :-)

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