I’ve been thoroughly enjoying creating these posts in my new tips for hobby bloggers series. These posts are always popular and get a great response, so I’ll take that to mean that you’re enjoying them too! Although I’m not a hobby blogger myself, I’d realised there was a huge gap for advice aimed at those who are and it would appear that many people agree.
So today in this next post in this series, we’re discussing the things that actually matter as a hobby blogger. Because I think there’s quite a few misconceptions. First things first (and I think I say this in every post), whatever your reason for blogging, is AMAZING.
Started your blog because you want to become a full-time content creator? INCREDIBLE.
Started a blog because you want to build a community of like-minded people and have fun? GREAT.
Started a blog because you want a safe space to talk about your feelings? COOL.
There’s no wrong way to blog, so I just wanted to get that out of the way. But in this series I’m aiming these posts specifically at those who a) don’t earn money from their blog, b) don’t WANT to earn money from their blog and c) but who still want to grow their blog, build a readership and have people read their content.
Related resource: A Beginners Guide To Growing Your Blog Following
So for that reason, I figured a post about the things that still matter even if you’re not making money, would come in handy. Because if you’re using your blog as an online diary and don’t care if ANYONE reads it, then you’re NOT going to be spending your time working on SEO.
But if you want to grow your blog, you community, your followers or your page views, then there are a bunch of things that will be important to you and will still matter. Which I realise is a very long winded introduction to what’s essential a very simple topic. Sorry.
In case you missed any of my previous posts within this series, you can find them here:
- Blogging For Fun: The Lost Art
- Time Management Tips For Hobby Bloggers
- 7 Tips On Managing Your Mindset For Hobby Bloggers
But now let’s look into 6 things that still actually matter for hobby bloggers!
Having a distinct and unique voice
Whether you make money or not, having a unique and distinct voice that people are attracted to is so important for growing your blog. Especially with how full the blogging community has become. Knowing what makes YOUR readers tick is a great place to start. Are you funny? Are you extremely relatable? What do you readers compliment you on?
Ensure your content reads like YOU. Not like everyone else. How many reviews are there out there of the same eye shadow palette, yet a handful of those will be from people who put their own spin on it, make it unique and draw their readers back time and time again.
Branding of your blog & social media
And following on from the above point, branding can also still be important for hobby bloggers. Not QUITE so much, I guess. But in terms of building a community and readership that will recognize your online presence, then it is. Making sure that unique voice you’ve already established is present throughout your social accounts as well as colour palettes, imagery etc.
Readable content that people will love
There’s two parts to this one and I think it’s pretty self explanatory but it’s SO IMPORTANT. First of all, readable content. Without meaning to sound patronizing AF if you want people to read your content, they’re going to need to be able to READ YOUR CONTENT. Is the format readable? Are you writing in HUGE chunks of text? Do you have pop ups flashing on the screen every 30 seconds?
- I Didn’t Read Your Blog Post – Here Are 7 Reasons Why
- Catchy Blog Post Titles: 6 Methods That Will Explode Your Traffic
- How To Think of Blog Post Ideas
And creating content people will LOVE is the second part. You want people to read your blog but in order for them to do that, you need to be creating content that people WANT, NEED and LOVE. Do a bit of research on what’s trending. Ask your social media followers what they want to read. Do you have expertise in a specific area that can teach others something?
The legal mumbo jumbo & necessary pages
A clean and tidy blog theme
As well as making sure that your actual content is readable for your audience, you’ll also want a blog theme that’s clean, tidy and easy to navigate. It’s obviously not COMPULSORY that you have this. If you want to have a black and red theme with flashing images then that’s fine BUT you’ll have a lot of people clicking off your blog fairly sharpish.
Accessibility and an easy to navigate blog will always ensure readers are kept on your blog for longer. Make sure you have search bars, a translation widget for non-native speakers and categorized pages.
Community, networking and communication
And finally, the community. It’s big enough for all of us, baby. So get in there and make yourself known. The beautiful thing about most of the blogging community is that it really doesn’t matter your reasons for being there and doing what you’re doing, everyone is so supportive anyway!
Are you a hobby blogger who’s realised they need to work on some of these things? What else would you add to this list? Let me know!
Need some additional resources? Check out my resource library!