5 Investments Every Blogger Should Make right from the start. These 5 things will help you to grow your blog rapidly and start earning money.
These are the 5 investments every blogger should make. It is important to invest in yourself and your business right from the start. It really took me a long time to realise how important it is to invest in my blog so don’t be like me ;).
Getting a self hosted website is key to growing your blog. It looks more professional as opposed to a free website and it is also great for your SEO (more on that here). It is also completely customisable when you use WordPress.org as apposed to the free WordPress.com sites. That means you can make your website look anyway you want and exactly how you want it. Hosting isn’t incredibly expensive, you could easily get your own domain name and hosting for around $5 per month. I use Bluehost because I found it to be incredibly easy to set up. I wasn’t very techie when I started blogging (okay I’m still not really), so the fact that Bluehost made it so incredibly easy to set up your own theme was a huge plus for me.
There are tons of free themes out there that you can use to customise your website, but if there is one thing I wish I had done right from the start, it would be to have invested in my business and myself and bought a theme. I was struggling with a free theme for so long. I would so incredibly frustrated and demotivated by it because it just never looked or worked the way I wanted it to. So do yourself a favour and invest in a theme that is exactly right for you. Not only will it look better but it will also work better, especially if you invest in one that is mobile friendly (which super important). You can check out Studiopress, they have tons of beautiful themes. I actually used one from there for Baking-Ginger. It is called Brunch Pro and I absolutely love it. It looks gorgeous and is mobile friendly and incredibly customisable. It is a Genesis Framework child theme, which I recommend every blogger invest in.
Okay so I know your thinking omg photoshop! Yes I know it is a rather large investment and seems super complicated to use. BUT…. Hear me out. Beautiful images are key to blog growth. They make people want more and it also makes people want to share your content. I use Photoshop every day to edit my photos so that they are more appealing and look more “shareable”. I also use Photoshop to create images for Pinterest. This is important. After you have been blogging for a while, you will quickly realise that SOOO much of your traffic comes from Pinterest. And in order for your pins to get repinned it is vital for you to have images that attract people, are the right size and shape and ultimately stand out. So “upskilling” yourself in a little photoshop skills will really be a long term investment in yourself as well as your blog. And I promise it is not at all that difficult to learn. In fact Adobe has a whole bunch of tutorial on their website and youtube is jam packed with people wanting to teach you the ins and outs of photoshop. You can get photoshop for as little as $10 a month and you will never look back.
This may seem like a bit of a silly one, but staying organised is incredibly important for growing your blog. Invest a beautiful calendar or notebook that really suits you and pretty much just makes you feel good. I have about 10 different calendars and notebooks that I use on a daily basis. Make sure that you plan out exactly when and what you are going to blog about each month, week and day. This way you will have consistency in your posting schedule (which is super duper important) and it will also help you to not get overwhelmed by all the work. You could even get a separate notebook to track you blog stats and growth as well as your social media growth. This Epic Blog Calendar is pretty much the best thing since sliced bread. It especially for bloggers and helps your to plan a whole years worth of content.
There are so many tricks and hacks in this business. So many things that we all just don’t know that we wish we could find out instantly in order to “crack” this business and to grow our blogs. It can be so frustrating trying to figure things out on your own (trust me I’ve been there). So investing in a course or two, simply to have someone guide you through this process is an insane help and I wish I had invested in it sooner. The two courses that I have taken and would definitely recommend are Food Blogger Pro (no it’s not just for food bloggers) and Building a Framework. Both these courses helped me in so many different ways and really got me through the frustrating times when I just didn’t know how to move forward with my blog. I have also heard amazing things about Pinfinite Growth by Melyssa Griffin, but am yet to give it a try.