Top 10 Blogging Tips For Growth + Productivity
The Tips + Tricks To Growing Your Blog
In 2020, blogging is still very much a big thing! According to Optin Monster, 70 million blog posts are shared every month by WordPress users alone. There are 77 million blog post comments every month too. There’s still a huge market for blogs, and many people are still reading them daily.
When joining the blogging community, it can be very easy to become overwhelmed. There’s so much info online about how to start a successful website, the things you need to start blogging and how you can a living from your writing. It’s easy to blow your mind over those first few weeks or months, to be honest!
I’ve been blogging since 2016, which is pretty late in the game compared to some people! I’ve had a couple of blogs over the years, but the only live one I have now is this one, Beautifully Fragile.
Over the past 4 years, I’ve learnt a hell of a lot about blogging. Through courses, reading other blog posts, lots of trial and error, and experience of what works and what doesn’t, I’ve learnt enough to fill a few books worth! I wanted to share some of these tips today for blogging growth + productivity, to help you in your blogging journey.
I hope you find them useful!
*In this post there may be affiliate links. These are links that I earn a small commission from purchases you make using them, but this doesn’t cost you anything extra. I only ever share products/services I use and love myself, or that I know for a fact are high-quality and beneficial to you. Check my policies for more info if you need it.*
1. Plan Your Content + BE CONSISTENT
A huge part of blogging is being organised and ahead of the game. This is especially true if you’re blogging alongside a full-time job. Running a successful blog takes up a lot more time than people would have you believe, certainly in the beginning!
Learning to plan your content ahead of time helps you to be more organised and prepared. It reduces the chances of you being left with nothing to share. It also takes away some of the pressure to be online constantly, because you know content is waiting to go.
I have a spreadsheet where I plan monthly content. This helps me visualise the month ahead and makes sure I know what I’m planning to share and when I need to have it written by.
I spend a Sunday afternoon at the start of every month planning my content around my normal schedule. Having a consistent schedule and being religious about sticking to it is EXTREMELY important.
People become expectant and they will be waiting for you to post your next piece of content. They’ll be loyal to you as long as you are providing the goods!
At the end of the day, you are blogging to teach, to provide value and to give your readers something. If you are not showing up when they expect you to, they’ll begin to feel like you aren’t reliable.
Building a successful blog comes from building a loyal and excited community, and you have to prioritise these people!
I like to use the spreadsheet I mentioned and simply map out what content I’m going to share on what day. Each Wednesday I post content around blogging and online business, and on Saturdays, I share content around personal growth, mindset and goals. So on the spreadsheet, I simply write the days down the left side and then the post ideas next to each date.
It’s an extremely simple exercise, but it really helps me to be organised and ahead of the game.
You can also use an Editorial Calendar plugin on WordPress, which allows you to schedule in your posts once you’ve written them.
Personally, I like to write as many posts as I possibly can when I’m in the writing frame of mind, I have the time, and I’m full of ideas and inspiration. Using the spreadsheet and Editorial Calendar together means I’ve got my plan and I’ve got it scheduled in and there’s no room for delays!
2. Practice Your Writing + Only Share Detailed Content With An Original Twist
Your content needs to be good – at the end of the day if you’re not providing detailed content that has an original, authentically ‘you’ twist, then you need to focus on trying to create more content like that.
People can get information at the drop of a hat these days. Google gives you many different options to choose from, and social media is full of amazing content creators doing their thing and dropping the knowledge.
If you want to be noticed and create a community of fans that come to you, you need to write detailed content that provides hella value, and that is original to YOU.
There’s no room for copying, for not putting everything into your posts, for being slack or downright boring! I’m sorry if that seems harsh, but it’s just facts.
If you’re struggling with this, my advice is to keep practising, keep writing as much as possible, read books from all kinds of genres and styles, talk to people in the blogging community and keep trying. You’ll get there!
3. Improve Your Photography Skills Or Use High-Quality Stock Photos
If you want your blog to stand out, then you need to use amazing photos that are on-brand, clear and beautiful, and draw people’s attention.
Learning to become a better photographer is one of my own personal goals, and I love writing posts that contain my own photos. I’m still far away from where I want to be, but I’m definitely improving and that makes me very happy.
If you can’t or don’t want to use your own photos then I advise using high-quality stock photos that you have the rights to use. Places like Pixabay and Unsplash are great places to start. Previously, I also used Haute Stock which is amazing for feminine photos for your blog and social media accounts.
Make sure you prioritise the imagery on your website because it’s extremely important for the professionalism and impact of your blog and your brand.
4. Create A Brand Visual + Use It Constantly
When you first start blogging you may or may not look at the set up of blog/social media/content creation as a brand – but it is!
All of these things together are your brand. And keeping them looking like a brand is vital if you want to grow and build your business around your website and content.
I like to create a brand visual, which I use to keep my content cohesive across all of my platforms. It is laid out on a sheet within my blog spreadsheet (that also contains my blog post planner). Having a brief overview of the colours, fonts and styles that come together to create my brand helps me every time I’m looking at making new graphics, images, editing my home page etc.
I simply inserted images that I’ve used or made via Canva, and then laid them on top of each other to create a branding visual. It clearly shows me the colour theme, the font styles etc. I’ve got some notes next to it with the colour codes I’ve used and the font names to make sure I’m always being exact with my content.
Using these things together creates a cohesive brand that helps build recognition and brand certainty.
5. Don’t Try To Boss All Social Media Platforms At Once
You know what they say about multi-tasking – it’s just an opportunity to bad at more than one thing.
Becoming very proficient at one or two forms of social media and concentrating on growing your reach and influence on these first is a brilliant way to approach it.
Trying to boss all of the platforms at once will likely lead to overwhelm and stress and you will struggle to see traction on any of them.
Definitely set up profiles/pages/accounts on each of the main ones that relate to you, such as:
- Tik Tok
There are many different platforms, and which work for you depends on your content style and the audience you are trying to attract and interact with.
For me, focusing on Instagram and Pinterest shows the most return of my time because this is where people who like my type of content hang out on a daily basis.
For you, this might be totally different. Do some research, practice with each and see where you see growth in your reach and your blog, and then concentrate more on the ones that work for you.
6. Start Your Email List As Soon As Possible
If you want to make money from your blog in the long-run and you want to safeguard yourself against all of the transitions that go in within the popularity of social media, then you need an EMAIL LIST.
Basically, the premise is that you collect your lovely readers’ email addresses when they come to your website. You can then email them directly with content that provides additional value, support, exclusive content etc, and have that instant connection to those that already like and know you.
The difference with your email list vs social media is that you own your list. These people have come directly along the ride with you, and you have that link with them to be able to communicate with them.
Even when your blog is small and you only have a few readers each month, you can still start signing people up to your email list. These people will have been with you from the start, and become your most loyal fans! Don’t miss out on these people.
I’m obsessed with MailerLite, I’ve used it for years. It’s free until you reach 1000 subscribers, and there are so many options such as popups (that work despite the reputation, just FYI!), landing pages and more. If you use my link for MailerLite, you get $20 credit against your account too – which is awesome, thank you so much MailerLite!
Email marketing is key to your overall success.
Create some forms, start getting people to sign up. Use PDF freebies full of amazing value and give them out in return for people’s emails. Send them emails weekly of your blog posts, and maybe set up an automated welcome series (let me know if you want more info on this). Invest your time in email, as long-term, the ROI is WORTH IT.
7. Make Friends In The Blogging Community
This one is good for morale and mindset as well as building a successful blog.
Making friends within the blogging community is great because you can work together, collaborate on awesome projects and also be there for each other. Knowing the struggle and the hard work that goes into a blog can make for good friends!
Connect with like-minded bloggers by commenting on their posts with genuine interest or speaking to them on social media. Be real and authentic and make genuine connections.
Over time, you might want to guest post for each other, do giveaways related to your niche or other fun collaborations! Just enjoy it and have fun with it.
I’ve met some amazing people through blogging and being online, and it’s great getting to connect with interesting, hardworking women who love to write! If you want to connect, please just DM on Instagram or comment below, I love getting to speak to you lovely readers.
8. Join An Affiliate Network + Start Making Money From Your Blog
Once you’ve established your blog, posted plenty of content and started making a community, you could start to look at making money from your website.
There are many different options for making money online, and affiliate marketing is one of the best, in my humble opinion!
The basic principle is that the blogger talks about a product that they use and like, and wants to recommend to their audience. They get personalised links from the brand/company, and when their readers click the link and make a purchase, they make a commission from purchases made.
The affiliate network makes money from connecting brands to bloggers, and the brand makes money via marketing from the blogger. The relationship is of mutual benefit, and is an amazing way to help your readers by recommending them products/services they’ll love!
One of the BEST affiliate networks out there is ShareASale – I’ve been using it for many years and have made a decent amount of commission from even a small blog using it. There are all kinds of companies using ShareASale – Shein, Claire’s Accessories, Spanx, Freshbooks, HP – the list is endless!
It’s completely free to get set up, unlike other networks, and you can get paid out as soon as you’ve made $50 or more, depending on what works for you.
9. Declutter + Simplify Your Strategy
Of course, there are many things to consider when starting a blog. Even within this post, we’ve covered some pretty serious topics. Lengthy topics that we’ve already discussed in detail!
It can be hard not to become overwhelmed and try everything at once. When you start learning there are many different strategies and tactics that you can use for growth.
However, I want you to try and declutter and simply your strategy. Focus on simple things, the basic strategy of building a successful blog comes from consistency, content and community.
By concentrating on building these things first and foremost, you can cut out the rest. Figuring out the best way to do those three things is the key to growing your website.
And remember: there is no such things as an overnight success – rather, it comes from years of hard work, trial and error, learning and growing.
10. Focus On The Blogging Mindset – Resilience, Dedication + Continuous Improvement
At the end of the day, blogging and the ability to be able to make it long-term comes from building the blogger mindset.
People think that running a blog is easy but it’s not – it takes a resilient mindset, dedication to your craft and continuous improvement to learn and hone your skills. You have to put plenty of time and effort into your website, and there are many different tasks on a daily basis to make it a success.
Spend 6 months blogging and see how you feel about it. If you’re truly passionate about it, you’ll make the time for it, you’ll want to spend your free time working on your blog. It can become very consuming!
Look at other blogs, read books and watch videos and learn all you can. Make friends and grow your community based on the skills and experience you have that’s unique to you.
Maybe it won’t happen overnight, but you’ll start seeing traction. You’ll see the results over time.
I hope you’ve found this post helpful, and there are at least one of these points that you can tap into and give a try.
Let me know below how you get on, bookmark this post so you can find it later!