5 things I’ve learnt from a year of blogging

5 things I’ve learnt from a year (and a bit!) of blogging


creative story book near black framed eyeglasses
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

I started blogging just over a year and  half ago, after thinking about it for a long time. In university we had to create a blog with classmates for an assignment, so I decided to bite the bullet and create my own blog at the the same time. I had a vague idea of what I wanted to do, but nothing more…but I’m still here so some things have worked! (And many things have failed…more about that later!)

Since starting blogging I have learned SO much, and I am sure that the learning will continue as there is simply so much you need to know!

I honestly believe that blogging makes you better, as you develop new skills in a number of areas. I have also learned so much from posts from other bloggers so I wanted to share some of what I have learned, even though I am definitely not an expert.

Hope that these tips are useful for you and I would love to hear your top lesson that you have learned since starting blogging:


1. You don’t have to have a ‘niche’

A lot of blogging advice says that you have to decide your ‘niche’ and regularly post content only in that particular niche. While it is true that having a niche will often help you build a following more quickly, it is also true that there are many successful blogs which have started by focusing on one specific area and have since diversified. At the end of the day, your blog is your little corner of the internet so you can (within reason!) write about anything you want.


2. Scheduling is your friend

Some days blogging will feel easy and your blog posts will just flow. On other says you won’t want to write anything. The option to schedule your posts is a great way to take the pressure off yourself and keep the fun in blogging because you can ‘stock up’ on posts when you are feeling creative, then schedule them to give yourself time to write more.


3. Engagement doesn’t happen overnight

There can be a tendency, when people start blogging, to write a few posts with enthusiasm, then lose some of that enthusiasm when the posts don’t immediately get as much engagement as you might have hoped. When you first create your blog it won’t rate highly in search results and it can take time to find out who you want to follow. If you wnt people to engage with your content, first you have to make sure that other people know about it – you can do this through cross-posting to Twitter or other social media, as well as visiting and commenting meaningfully on other blogs.


4. Blogging is a community, not a competition

Some people may disagree with this one, particularly as I am sure that we all know someone who treats blogging as a competition about stats. However, I honestly believe that one of the best bits of blogging is the community that you become a part of and how supportive everyone can be. It can be scary at first – I know that I ‘lurked’ for a long time before daring to comment on another blog – but getting to know other bloggers and making connections is something that you will be glad you have done.


5. Comparisons are meaningless

You might see someone who started their blog after you who seems to be do dong so much ‘better’, or wonder why your reviews don’t get as much attention as some other blogs where the review seems to consist of the summary of the book and not much else. You may despair of ever taking beautiful photographs like some on bookstagram or wonder at how some bloggers seem to post every day with fascinating posts and always seem to be on top of things. I posted my 2018 blogging stats as a way to encourage transparency and because I am beginning to realise that there are more important things. I used to put a lot of pressure on myself to post every day, but that has to work for you and your life. Try to find a blogging schedule that works for you and don’t worry if you have to take a break because life gets in the way – the blog will still be here and so will your readers!


What have you learned since starting blogging?

Can you add any tips to my list?

What made you start your blog?

Do you ever regret starting blogging?

Let me know in the comments!

If you have a blog post which you wish had had a bit more attention, link it below and I will have a read and comment!


Find me on Twitter , Goodreads or Instagram


Thanks for reading!

Advertisements

31 Comments Add yours

  1. Definitely agree with all of these! My two year anniversary is two weeks tomorrow, which I can’t believe. Something else I’d add to this is that it’s really important to be kind to yourself- I love having a schedule and being organised and I’m quite rigid within that, and have got myself stressed over missing posts before, but I’m starting to relax a little bit more about that now!
    Amy x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Congratulations on 2 years (in two weeks)! Being kind to yourself is such an important tip and one that I think many people forget. I used to stress a lot more than I did, but now I know that it’s not the end of the world if I cannot post on a specific day! Hope that you will have lots of time to blog once you finish for the summer! x

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m finished! My last exam was on Tuesday (French) and as it’s my last year I don’t need to go back after study leave ends 😊. I’m really looking forward to having more time for reading and blogging in the next few months! X

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Congratulations! So happy to hear that you’re finished and hope that they all went well! Enjoy your well-deserved break! x

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Beware Of The Reader says:

    I so agree with you! Especially on the community so supportive and acquiring ne skills! Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I have to admit that I had no idea how difficult and time-consuming blogging could be before I started. Yet, I also had no idea of how many new friends I would make so it has been a positive experience overall!

      Like

  3. Paul's Picks says:

    Love this!! Things I definitely have to remind myself about sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I try to remind myself about these too, particularly when I’m stressing out about not having a blog post completed. Glad you enjoyed it!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Emma's Library says:

    I’m with you on the scheduling! I tend to write posts in batches so it makes things easier to schedule them and it relieves the pressure of remembering to write a post for a particular day! I’ve been a little lax lately with post writing and blogging as a whole because life struck, but I do slowly want to get back to the rhythm I was in a while ago where I was writing posts for at least a month and a half in advance!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, a month and a half in advance?! That;s amazing! I don;’t think that I have ever been so organized in my life! I try to schedule as much as possible, but I’ve fallen behind a bit this year. Hope you can get back into your routine and wish I could have posts scheduled even a week in advance instead of a few days before!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Emma's Library says:

        There was one point I’d come home and do nothing but research and write blog posts. I want to get back into it now as June will be busy and I want to get as many posts written as possible.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Just as long as it doesn’t become a chore, but rather something that you enjoy or feel accomplished doing. I quite enjoy researching blog posts unless I’m feeling pressured to get something finished for a deadline. Good luck getting things scheduled! I have a short holiday from work coming up soon and I will need it as I am really behind!

        Like

      3. Emma's Library says:

        Thank you. I hope you manage to get some posts sorted out!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. nsfordwriter says:

    Great post and well done! How did you manage to get over 900 WordPress subscribers in a year?!
    I confess I am happier when I get a lot of views but actually I don’t mind too much about the stats because I’m writing what I want to write.
    Scheduling is definitely my friend – somehow I have managed to get very far ahead which is good for when I don’t have the time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had hardly any for the first few months, then I started following and commenting on others’ blogs so my followers also started to grow. Only some are ‘active’ followers though so I am guessing that there are some people who just followed me and forgot to unfollow again! I ahve been terrible at scheduling for the past few months as I used up all my scheduled posts when moving house and recovering from surgery. Hoping to get back ‘on the wagon’ soon! I love your blog and how eclectic and individual it is 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. nsfordwriter says:

        Thank you! I like to have original ideas and there are so many in my head 🙂
        You have an impressive number of wordpress followers for the amount of time.
        All the best with getting back on the scheduling 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you – I am trying to be more organised but have a habit of starting lots of jobs and ending up leaving lots of them unfinished, whoops! I always look forward to seeing what you come up with! x

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Congratulations. Always lovely to see you around. You’ve nailed blogging like you nail everything else, and your hard work has paid off. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve missed a few months here and there, but am still enjoying it which is really the main thing for me. I am in awe of how often you post and the amazing content on your blog though – only wish I could have that commitment and organization! Cannot wait for the summer holidays when I can read and read and read, as well as blog too 🙂

      Like

  7. ekpreston says:

    I really like #5. Sometimes, I’ll look at another blogger who is doing well and has been blogging for a shorter time than I have, and I feel like an utter failure. But you’re right. Blogging should be tailored to individuals and what works for individual writers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean! Sometimes I look at other blogs and wonder how they’re doing so well and I’m not…but that way lies madness! I am enjoying the process of blogging which is the important thing for now!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Syeda Saher says:

    It’s been almost 6 months and I feel my blog has done so well so far. I have even got Google adsense approved. I am using twitter as the major social media platform but I am trying to figure out Pinterest and Facebook for myself now as I heard it brings loads of traffic.
    I agree chosing one specific niche is not essential. Infact I think keeping your blog diverse allows you to engage with a larger number of people. I have also learned that most new bloggers are unaware of SEO and a little education on that topic can help a lot. I try to shae helpful chunks from my knowledge about blogging SEO if you are interested. https://gurrusays.com/how-to-make-your-blog-grow-tips-for-lifestyle-bloggers/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will have a look at the article, thanks for linking it! I am aware of SEO, but am still not really using it to grow my blog. Well done for being so clued up after only half a year – I should have done more research before starting a blog, for sure!

      Like

      1. Syeda Saher says:

        SEO is a slow and painstaking process but it pays you well in the longer run. I will recommend you get started on it as soon as possible. Please let me know if you have any questions at all regarding SEO. I will try to answer them all to the best of my knowledge. Or you can check out my blog for it.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you! I have some time off work next week so I am planning to read through lots of your posts and start to educate myself! I will send you a message if I get stuck, thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Jaya Avendel says:

    This is such an encouraging post! I often feel discouraged from the many things I write about on my blog reading posts that encourage bloggers to find a niche and stick to one topic or relatable topics.

    Thank you for sharing your experiences!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So glad to hear it encouraged you! A lot of blogging advice says to focus on a niche and it;s true that posting in a specific niche can help you to build your audience faster. However, we aren’t one-dimensional people and I think it’s better to have a blog that reflects your on unique interests, therefore developing your own niche! I also think it depends on what you are blogging for – are you blogging with the aim of earning money? Or blogging because you want to blog? For me, I started my blog because I was looking for a teaching resource that didn’t exist…so I created it and enjoyed the process of creation so much that I’ve been blogging ever since!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Jaya Avendel says:

        That is a good question to ask ourselves. I feel like we need more people who share their experiences blogging without a specific niche to show it can be done.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.