Writing a blog for dummies – 10 steps to success
Writing a blog for dummies is something that I can relate to and have searched for myself. Only a few short months ago, I had no idea how to even begin to write a blog or a post for my website. Come to think of it, I didn’t even know the difference between a blog and a website.
You may be asking at this point if I am actually qualified to teach you how to write a blog, if I have only been at it for such a short time. Well you need to be the judge, but what I can offer you is a simple way to start writing your blog without confusing you with a whole heap of technical terms that will only serve to confuse you. I’m sure some people use all that technical stuff, just to sound clever.
You do not need to be big or clever to start a blog and write great stuff people really want to read.
Step One: Create a Website.
If you don’t have one you can’t really start blogging effectively. It’s not that hard to set up using WordPress. You will need to either use the free WordPress name or purchase one to sound more professional but there is no need at the beginning. When you have decided to continue on your blogging journey you can always transfer all of your hard work over to your new site. If you do not already have one you might want to check out Wealthy Affiliate who will give you 2 free sites on their platform and give you some free training too. You can check out my review of Wealthy affiliates by clicking on this link.
Step Two: Decide on your Niche
A Niche is just a group of people who have similar interests. Nothing too complicated here. Deciding on your Niche or who your readers are going to be, will help you to write and communicate with them more effectively. As a blogger you are not going to be able to appeal to everyone and it’s not worth trying. Deciding on your Niche can be tricky especially if you have lots of things to say like me. Read my post on deciding on a niche by clicking on the link here.
Step Three: Create an About Me Page
People do want to know who the person behind the blog is. Don’t panic, you do not need to be young, glamorous or clever with an interesting back story. You just need to be you. Your readers want to be able to relate to you and not everyone can relate to a young, glamorous, clever “it” person. I certainly can’t. You can say as much or as little about yourself as you like. No need to write an essay but make sure you put in why you have decided to start your blog and what experience you have with it.
Step Four: Find a Title
Now this is important because a good title will mean your blog gets found and read. There is so much information out there on the internet but much of it is lost because when people want to know something they put some words into Google and then find a title that appeals on the first page. You probably did the exact same thing to find this blog post.
If your blog post is not on the first or second page it will not get read unless you are brilliant at internet and Social media marketing. The way to get ranked highly by Google is by using Keywords. Keywords are just words or sentences searched for by people on the internet. Google gives them sites that match their search terms most closely. You can read more about Keywords and how to analyse what are good terms by reading my post on Keyword Search tools by clicking the link here.
Step Five: Start Writing
The hard bit for many of us. I suggest you just write whatever comes to mind about your subject matter. Don’t worry about grammar or sentences, just write. The more you write the clearer your message will become to you. All of my blog posts start out with a big blurb of information on my page and that’s okay because at this point the only person who can see it is me. I often walk away and do something else to clear my mind before going back to do Step Six.
I always aim for around a 1000 words and no more than 1500. I get bored or lost and confused if I start reading a blog post that goes on too long. I want simple information that will help me. If I had wanted more information, I would have bought a book. Sell me a book by all means but don’t re write it in your own words. You may discover that after writing down everything you know on the subject matter of your title that you could actually split the information into two or three subjects. Just copy and paste the information out into a new post to be finished later.
The language of your writing is important. Just because you know lots of technical terms doesn’t mean you have to use them. Remember you don’t have to be big and clever to write a blog. Write in a conversational style as if writing it for someone you already know. Don’t be afraid to put some of your own personality in there.
Step Six: Edit
Once you have everything in your mind out on the page you can go back and edit. I re read, take out irrelevant information and re order the information so it makes logical sense.
My next step is to create shorter paragraphs and find some headings. Readers take in information more easily when paragraphs and sentences are short. They also take in information more easily if they have signposts (headings) to tell them what is coming up next.
I will then re read and check my grammar, making any simple changes as I go along.
One last read and I’m off to Step Seven.
Step Seven: Add Images
I’m going to reach for the old cliche of a “picture paints a thousand words” here. Well they do, and images will need to play a part in your blog posts. Some bloggers I know use more pictures than words. That’s their style and it appeals to their audience. I’m not that type of blogger, I am here to teach and coach and a blog post with just pictures and a bit of writing, just won’t work.
However, if you imagine this post without any of the images, it would be a hard read. People do need to see some white space and some images to help them to read the content comfortably.
Adding images in WordPress is easy and there are several websites where you can find free images. Many images need to be bought because they are copyrighted but there is no need to do this when starting out.
Step Eight: Add Links
First off a link is just a URL (title) of another website or post within your website, that is linked to some words or image on your blog. It’s aim is to send your reader to something else you want them to see. You will see several in this post in case you want to have extra information on any of the steps. You can click away and they will open in a new page so you won’t lose your place here.