Most blogs these days have a sidebar and it’s usually one of the first things you notice when you discover a new blog. What’s in that sidebar however can be incredibly important to growing your blog, your audience and encouraging people to spend more time on your blog rather than clicking off and going elsewhere. Remember, we’re not in the days of Piczo anymore so whilst flashing images, neon graphics and moving GIF’s might grab someones attention, it’ll soon give them a headache. Sidebars need to be (relatively) clean, easy to understand but most importantly, include the right information to benefit your fabulous blog! So let’s get into it, shall we? Here are some super handy things you can include in your blogs sidebar.
Each and every month when I check my stats on my WordPress app, sitting at the top of my “most views” posts during that month are always blogging-related posts. These tend to be advice style posts and occasionally blogging related discussions but you can bet your bottom dollar that posts about blogging are almost always my most viewed posts. I’m most certainly no “blogging guru” (literally if you call yourself a blogging guru, go home) but I’ve been blogging for over 5 years now, learnt a hella lot along the way and I love to share what I’ve learnt with my readers. From anything from growing a following, how to find sponsored opportunities and tips on being self-employed – if I have some experience in it and/or have some strategies that I’ve found have worked for me, you can probably expect a blog post about it.
I want to talk about something. Something which has become more and more prominent in the blogging world over the last few years. At least for me anyway – it’s probably been like this for far longer but perhaps I haven’t been paying attention. It’s something I see almost on a daily basis; on Twitter and even in blog comments on my own blog. I feel that we have a bit of a “follow for follow” problem in blogging and I wanna have… a little chat… about it today (chat = rant).
Having a blog is great. Creative freedom? Tick. A way to express yourself and talk about things you love? Tick. An opportunity to meet like-minded people? Triple tick. For a lot of bloggers, writing posts and taking / editing the photos is the easy part. Heck, even making sure you take the time to ensure that your post is SEO friendly can be fairly straight forward once you get into the swing of it. It’s what comes next that I’ve heard some people struggle with and I know I did when I started blogging – I wouldn’t know where to start with sharing my blog posts, let alone effectively sharing my blog posts.
Despite no other area of my life being particularly straight forward or successful, I’d say my blogging journey is something I can be proud of. Which is a huge thing for me to say because in general, nothing I ever do is good enough and I spend my entire life comparing myself to other people. But we’ll save that for another post. I can’t take credit for this post idea, someone else suggested it to me months ago and I’ve only just got around to writing it but I can’t remember for the life of me who it was (if it was you, please shout!) I’ve felt a little intimidated with the prospect of writing about my blogging journey. I’m sure I’ll miss something out but I’ll do my best.
I tweet about blogging a lot. Blogging is my main source of income, the thing I spend the most of my life doing and the thing that makes up the majority of my thoughts on any given day. So I think it’s pretty standard that I’m going to talk about it a lottttttt. A little while ago, I mentioned that I had over 30 posts scheduled for the coming months on my blog and that tweet got one hell of a response from praise, awe and just general disbelief. Not tooting my own horn here whatsoever but as I said, blogging is my main “thing”, it’s not just a here-and-there hobby to me any more, I take it extremely seriously so I don’t think it should be that much of a surprise that I’m so organised with my blog.
Since my little discussion about why I like blogging for bloggers, I’ve been inspired to write more blogging-related blog posts lately. I think there will always be a blogging related topic that someone needs or wants to find out more about and blogging is such a multi-layered hobby or career that even the smallest and seemingly most obvious pieces of advice can go a long, long way. I’ve certainly learnt that over the years I’ve been blogging; making the smallest change or doing what I think is something insignificant can make a impact on my blog. Today’s post is a little bit like that, a bit of a “well duhhhhhh” but sometimes it’s not “duh” at all. Sometimes we do genuinely forget to do the simplest things when it comes to blogging. I mean, we’ve got a hell of a lot to think about, can you blame us?