With time, you get experience in anything that you do and sometimes you start dreaming about how good it would be to travel back in time and give the knowledge that you have accumulated throughout the years to yourself so, you could avoid the pitfalls and reach the top way faster and have the certainty that everything is going to be okay.
Sadly, time travel hasn’t been invented yet and I can’t share my business knowledge with my past self. Still, I started thinking, if I had to start all over knowing what I know now about blogging, I would do a lot of things differently and I wanted to share those tips with you, hoping that they will help you get to the top faster.
What You Will Learn
Why analytics can do more bad than good when you’re starting out
Why just building a list isn’t enough
How important it is to publish new content consistently
The best strategy for building authority when just starting out
Why quality is more important than quantity
I Wouldn’t Install Analytics For The First Two Months
Analytics is a huge time waster for me and it plays all kinds of emotional games on me.
To track my blog I use Google Analytics and Site Stats by Jetpack and I check them multiple times a day, just to see how I’m doing and if I’m not doing as good as usual, I feel bad.
All kinds fo thoughts start racing through my head maybe I got penalized by Google, maybe my site was down, maybe I was hacked, but chances are that it is a slower day than usual and it’s no big deal.
When you’re starting out there’s not much to look at for the first months so, it’s best to have your analytics turned off and focus on creating content, promoting it, etc.
Of course, you don’t want to have your analytics turned off forever because they do provide a lot of critical information.
Analytics show how well your blog is performing, which posts are getting the most traffic, what kind of content is attracting the most visitors, for which keywords you are ranking, how much organic traffic you’re getting and tons of other things that you can analyze. You can use all of this info to your advantage, it helps you to better understand your audience and provide more content that your audience is looking for.
I Would Build A Double Opt-in List And Treat It Like Gold
If I remember correctly I started collecting emails on EasyM6 early on because it was my third blog that I had started about internet marketing and I already had some knowledge on how to monetize a blog.
Now, what I didn’t do right from the beginning was building a double opt-in list that consisted of only my blog subscribers.
I have spent a lot of time and money trying to build an email list in the internet marketing niche so, I could start selling solo ads and make money out of it. Sadly, I haven’t managed to scale it and for now I have decided to focus solely on blogging.
The list that I have built using all kinds of internet marketing techniques is single opt-in and even though I have more than 2000 people on my list the results that I’m getting are very poor.
So, if I started again from scratch I wouldn’t use my blog to build a single opt-in list that I could use to sell solo ads, but I would focus on building a double opt-in list of real people and I would focus on providing them value.
I Would Be Consistent With Publishing
I started looking for ways to make money online around 5 years ago. For the first 2 years, I was trying out all the different things that had nothing to do with marketing. I was trying to make money with bux sites that disappeared faster than you could get a payout.
Still, I kept at it. I figured that I need to promote those bux sites to get referrals and start making more money.
Well, when I say make more money I’m talking about going from making 5 cents a day to 10 cents a day. Now, it really was more like a game to me. Instead of playing Counter Strike killing bad guys, I was getting a few bucks here and there into my PayPal account.
Anyways, I wanted to start making a bit more, to step up my game so, I started looking for referrals, this lead me to starting my very own blogger blog. Even though, this blog is long gone, just pretend with me for a second that I had started it four years ago and every single week I had written a blog post about my newest make money online adventures.
How many blog posts would that be?
52 weeks a year x 4 years = 208 blog posts. That’s just a little bit less than what I have currently published on EasyM6. If I did two blog posts a week that would have been 416 blog posts and so on.
Do you think that from 200 blog posts you could get some traction, think about all the backlinks that would have accumulated, etc. Just with pure consistency and persistency you can do a lot.
So, I would stick to publishing regularly from the beginning, I think that this is the key to blogging success.
I Would Start Out By Doing Guest Blogging
Starting a blog today is completely different than it was 5 years ago. There was definitely less competition, it was easier to rank and you didn’t have to worry about Google penalties.
Yet, you can’t turn the time back, you either adapt or do something else. So, knowing what I know now, at the beginning I would focus on publishing very little on my own blog and publish everything else on other blogs.
Guest blogging helps you achieve several things.
You start getting known in the industry, you start building a name for yourself. You start building backlinks for your website that help your content rank. You start generating traffic from all those backlinks. If you are doing it right, then you are also building an email list. Lastly, you build relationships with other bloggers.
All these benefits help to lift off your blog from the bottom where no one can find it, to a semi authoritative blog that people come to read.
I Would Write Longer Blog Posts
I remember my very first blog posts, how I struggled to even write 300 words. If I wrote a blog post that was 500 words long, then I was very happy.
After some time, I became a better writer and 500 word articles were the norm and slowly I started aiming to write around 700 words.
These days my regular blog post tends to be at least 1000 words long and my aim is usually 2000 even though I rarely make it that long. So, with time my content has become longer.
When it comes to content quality is more important than quantity. If you publish daily, but you only write short 300 word articles that don’t provide any value, then you won’t achieve much.
Writing long articles get you more traffic, they rank easier, get shared more, etc. All of those short articles will rarely ever rank and only generate traffic as long as you are actively promoting them and no organic traffic will accumulate.
So, I would strive to write longer blog posts that provide a lot of value to the readers right from the beginning.
I Would Maybe Use My Name As The Domain Name
If I started all over again, I would seriously consider having my name as the domain name though I’m not too sure about it. The biggest concern is that my name isn’t something easy to remember and that would be a long and confusing URL.
Anyways, I think it could still be a great idea for personal branding, but I don’t know for sure, I find as many cons as I find pros for having your name as the domain name.
And what would you do differently if you had to start all over again knowing what you know now? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.