recording podcasts, crafting YouTube channels, and managing a killer social media platform.
This is a guide to help beginner bloggers establish a feed and structure it so readers want to keep coming back!
Step 1: Choose a Web-host
The three most commonly used web hosts are: Wix, Weebly, and Wordpress.
My personal favorite for beginners is Weebly because it has the most user friendly interface, an excellent blogging platform, and has built-in app features that will allow you to customize your website.
Wix is another easy to use interface. It, like Weebly, is a drag and drop editor and has over 500+ templates to choose from. If you are looking for a pre-made sleek design that you can edit and make your own, Wix might be for you!
WordPress is the more advanced webhost. It requires coding knowledge and has a much larger learning curve, however, it is the most customizable and there are really no limitations on design.
For the following tutorial I will be using Weebly for the examples.
Step 2: Establish your Niche
So you have decided to start a blog, that's fantastic!!
Before you start writing or thinking of topics really understand what your niche is. Who is your target audience? How is the best way to reach them? What are the broad concepts that my blog will be focusing on?
I think this Venn diagram from Lindsay Does Languages is a beautiful representation of how to find your niche. Make a list and start with the stuff you love.
Write down 5 things you love, then 5 things you're good at, and finally 5 things people want.
Does something stick out to you? Sleep on it and let it fester, it will come!
Step 3: Brainstorm Topics
The fun part! Take that passion and start thinking of topics you can easily write about. Think of a few broad topics then under each broad topic start breaking it down into 5 or more smaller sections or articles.
This is an excellent, and extra, brainstorm map. You don't have to take it to this graphical extreme but start with your niche in the middle then add 4 or more large branches, then 4 or more smaller branches off of the larger branch and see how much you come up with!
You are going to want to think of at least 20 article topics before you start writing to make sure you have enough engaging content for your niche before you start your blog. If you can only think of 7 articles, you might need to rethink your niche.
Step 4: Draft
Now that you have a list of potential articles, start drafting one!
Put all those years of English classes to use and write your heart out. I like to just write a stream of consciousness and go back and edit later. The more time you take trying to make it perfect the entire way through will burn you out! Besides, what is coming out during a stream of consciousness is YOU and that's what people want to read. Don't waste your time during you draft thinking of flowery words, just let it flow!
Step 5: Structure and Publish
Alright, so you read through your stream of consciousness and edited out all of the weird, bad, and the ugly and now you are left with a beautiful 2 page article. However, we aren't your English teacher and don't want to read a paper.
Most online readers are skimmers so now you need to take your beautiful article and divide it up into digestible sections:
You need a TITLE, PICTURES (non-blurry professional picture), HEADERS, BULLET POINTS, and then add in content around that.
Break up your text with line breaks. 1-2 sentences per paragraph in a blog is plenty!
Here is a great blog "blueprint" from First Site Guide to help you structure your blog posts.
Step 6: Share!
This is arguably the most important part and so many people are afraid to do it. However, if you don't share your blog posts they are more than likely never going to break through the crowded internet, no matter how amazing they might be.
So be proud of your work! Share your posts with your friends and family, customers, and social media followers!
Jessica Jones, Owner & Lead Designer