Last updated on December 17th, 2018 at 07:46 pm
Regrets. We all have them and when it comes to blogging there are somethings I definitely wish had done earlier on in my journey. Here I share what they are.
If there’s one person I know who really likes to not rush things, then that’s me.
It took me 1.5 years to join social media after starting my blog and it took me about a year to join an ad network after I already had enough traffic to make some money from it.
I could’ve been making passive income for an year and I didn’t even try.
Well, those are not the only areas I procrastinate in when it comes to my blog.
Now, in the hope to inspire you to stop wasting time and take care of your blog, here are 9 things I wish I did earlier.
9 Mistakes Most Bloggers Make (Things I regret not doing earlier)
1. Waiting to know everything
Okay, so one more thing I waited for: actually starting my blog. This took me 3 FREAKIN’ YEARS. Like 3 years to do something that nobody I knew had to know about, nobody could judge me for and I didn’t need to invest more than $100.
I was putting it off, and putting it off and always did something else, because it was “more secure”.
But during those 3 years, blogs I followed got huge. And I had stayed the same, even though I did change my job for another one I didn’t like. I didn’t learn any new skill, even though I was reading thousands of income reports and how people organized their blogs and made money online.
It’s obvious, but…reading and doing something are two completely different things. You learn differently, you cannot discover new things only based on the experiences of others.
If you feel like you never know enough to start your own blog you might want to check out my free Step-By-Step Blogging Guide For Beginners teaching you how to launch your blog with a cheap and extremely reliable hosting (get 60% off) and the two most important keys to become a successful blogger.
So if you’re always putting it off – start your blog and know you’ll figure it out as you go. We all learn along the way – beginner or advanced.
2. Creating helpful content
Above all – I wish I created content that was helpful from the start.
I actually only started feeling good and not like I’m oversharing once I started thinking about others and not me when writing my blog posts.
Once I took the focus off of me me me and put that focus on the people I can help, everything changed.
My traffic grew quicker and people actually read my content.
As a rule of thumb now I always ask myself: “Would I share this if I was a stranger reading it?”.
If the answer is not a firm yes, it’s definitely a no.
3. Joining the RIGHT platform
Like I said it took me 1.5 years to get on social media. So, no doubt – I wish I had done this earlier. Joining social media has helped me get more exposure and not be somewhere in the ass of the internet.
When I first joined social media I thought that I needed to focus on Instagram most.
Instagram gave me a very quick, un-delayed gratification. Likes and follows within seconds, not even minutes. Even though I knew nobody there.
The thing is…
Those likes and follows on Instagram?
They come and go.
People follow, then unfollow you within what feels like seconds after you follow back. Yes, this is the shittiest thing ever, but I guess that’s just the way it is these days. Number of followers on Instagram are more important than actual people.
And all that fuss on Instagram for how much traffic, again? That’s right – 0! Nobody, and I mean nobody EVER came to my blog from Instagram.
I’m not saying being on Instagram is a waste of time, but for me it wasn’t the right thing to focus on at the beginning.
Then I decided to actually try out what other bloggers recommended – using Pinterest.
And there within a month, my traffic (which was 860 from using Yummly for a few weeks) grew to 19.000 page views.
And that felt so awesome.
Then, Pinterest helped me also grow my traffic from Google and it helped me go from page 6 when I google Beauty Bites to #1 result on Google.
After joining Pinterest I never looked back. As I create new content and use Pinterest on a regular basis, either by scheduling or pinning manually, my traffic keeps growing. Last year I went from 30.000 to over 100.000 page views.
From the start the goal of my blog was to do whatever I can by spending the least money I can (yes, I’m kinda stingy.).
So naturally I bought the cheapest hosting I could and used a free WordPress theme, that didn’t showcase my content in a good way and wasn’t SEO friendly. In fact I wouldn’t even have a real start page – it would just be my logo and posts under it.
Now this is ok, if you’re just starting out and testing the waters, but I wanted people to stick around for more and I wanted to grow quicker.
Plus I wanted some freedom in the customization of my website and I wanted my website to load fast!
So later, I bought new, better hosting that was surprisingly cheap and paid for a WordPress theme that was more engaging and optimized for my content on Beauty Bites. Here’s what I got:
- I decided to go with Siteground for hosting, mainly because they migrated my site for free and had great uptime (something my old hosting sucked at!). My uptime still is 100% a year after and I found out they also have amazing support. If you decide Siteground is a great fit for you too, you can get 60% off right now.
- As for WordPress theme, I changed to Genesis and after a long consideration decided to get The Divine Theme, because it really showed a great amount of my content, which helps to keep my audience engaged. The most important thing, however was that it’s SEO-friendly and helped my site rank higher in Google. I definitely highly recommend getting the Genesis Framework, it’s definitely worth the money and the quality and support you get. If you wish to try Genesis you can find it here and take a look at Divine Theme here).
5. Building my email list and engaging with my audience more
One thing I regret not doing from at least day one since starting getting traffic is capturing email addresses and actually emailing my subscribers.
Now this is, still (!!!), something I’m very behind with and something I need to finally work on.
I started collecting email addresses, but I’m still trying to figure out a way to actually stay consistent with emailing my subscribers.
Each week I promise myself I’ll figure it out next week, but in the end I put it off again.
One of my New Years resolutions is to start doing more of this. I don’t want to talk to people like a know it all, I actually want to connect and help where I can.
6. Joining an ad network
Now, I waited to start promoting my content on social media, but I waited even longer to make ANY money from my blog.
Not much after I started promoting my content on Pinterest I got to 30.000 page views. The minimum you need to join Mediavine, the ad network I work with currently.
I waited around a year to join!
When you do some math…Even if I made a $100 per month (passively!) from that alone, I would still get an extra $1200 that year!
This is definitely something I regret not doing sooner.
7. Joining Affiliate Programs other than Amazon
I’m working on this right now and I need to test more to really report here.
The Amazon Affiliate Program is great if you’re in a niche that can make money from it. But in my case, I feel like it is not really worth it.
I get some clicks and income from that program here and there, but it’s in the 10’s. Not even in the 100’s. The fact is that Amazon doesn’t pay you much for your referrals.
They do however give you money on all purchases your reader makes within 24 hours of clicking on your link. So it might work for some, but it doesn’t work that well for me. And I feel I’m not very consistent with it.
My goal for the future is to find more, higher paying affiliate programs. Those need to fit my niche and offer good products I like. I already joined affiliate networks like shareasale and Awin and look for merchants there.
Another great thing about those affiliate programs is that you can offer your readers a better deal on a product you love. I love promotions and discount codes, so this is something I’m really excited about.
8. Creating my own products
Now this is actually the reason I wanted to start a blog in the first place. I wanted to create a book with healthy recipes and help people eat healthier in less time and I wanted to promote it on my blog.
Kinda like, have a taste and then get the full meal here thing.
But did I do it?
I got so caught up in creating my blog content that I completely pushed off creating any of my ebookS (with time I got more and more ideas and let some behind).
This is definitely something I want to work on this year. I know it’s something that can make me good extra money without investing a lot. And what’s more it will be such a relief to finally get these books off my mind and share them with the world.
Another great thing about this is: you have the freedom to create something you’re really really passionate about! Something you really believe in and something that can really help someone.
9. Connecting with other bloggers
Last but not least – connecting with others who do the same thing, because it’s more fun this way.
In real life I’ve outgrown this, but somehow connecting online with other people who have the same hobby or “job” like me is tough.
I feel like a weirdo reaching out to people who I have never seen in real life. Even though I’m really from the bottom of my heart happy when others reach out to me. I need that connection.
I realize I’m overthinking this and it’s definitely one of my biggest New Years resolutions – be more social online and offline.
I know working with others can benefit your blog and business in many ways beyond getting traffic from leaving random comments on posts you think will be viral.
Mostly though, I miss having “coworkers”.
Working from home has its good and bad sites, you know? One of them – not being in touch with people other than your family and friends. Not being able to talk to others who actually understand your struggles.
So getting the courage to reach out and connect with others on social media or by commenting is definitely something I’m working on now.
Alright guys, I hope you found this post helpful if you’re just starting out, I realize it was all me me me, but I hope it was a me me me talk that can actually help you and inspire you to do all the things I listed above SOONER!