Creating reliable and enjoyable content is the foundation for a successful blog. It is easy to fall into one of two pitfalls as a blogger – writer’s block or overload. You just don’t know what to write, or there is so much that you are overwhelmed – both cases can make you doubt your quality as a blogger.
Whether you are struggling with writer’s block or overload, these tips will help keep your blog content enjoyable, search engine happy and useful to others.
Know your niche
If you do not already know what your blog is going to be about, find out now. Knowing your niche – what the majority of your blog’s content will cover – will help your content stay searchable, relevant and coherent. There is nothing more confusing than to sit at the computer and not know what to write when you have any topic under the sun to choose from. And as a reader, it is very difficult to know what to expect – will I be reading about green living one day and your husband the next?
There is nothing wrong with having a “nicheless” blog. Lots of successful mom blogs cover a variety of topics. But knowing the top 3 things you want to cover will help keep your blog reliable and your readers will come to depend on you for these topics. A great example of a “mish mash” blog is 3 Kids and Us. She covers her family, recipes, local Chicago, reviews, giveaways and more. But I can rely on her for mostly her family, recipes and quality reviews. Other bloggers write about a gamut of things but do so with a sense of humor that readers return for again and again.
Find what you love and write about it. That is your niche.
When you don’t know what to write about, start brainstorming. What do you know? If you were going to call up your BFF right now, what would you say? This is where knowing your niche is a huge plus. Are you excited about a batch of muffins you just made? Maybe you just discovered a new cloth diaper you absolutely love or you discovered a new use for vinegar. Then, when you know what you love to talk about, start writing down all the different things related to it. If you are a reader, write down your favorite books or maybe even your least favorite. If you are a clean freak, write down all different topics related to cleaning – organizing, products, tips, pitfalls, etc. Then keep this list for future writer’s block moments.
Organize your thoughts before you blog
Once you know your niche – or better yet your passion – pick a topic and then make that topic smaller. Organize your thoughts before you write and you might even find that what you were writing can be split into more posts later on. For example, if you love cleaning (since I don’t!) and you want to write about how to maintain your laundry, jot down what you are going to say in your post on a piece of paper. Then, you might think about writing a narrower topic – how to keep clothes wrinkle free – and more topics will spring up too – like how to keep clothes smelling fresh without dryer sheets.
Above all, make sure your post is well organized – unless you are purposefully making it random like for “Random Thoughts Tuesday.” A well organized post will bring back readers and keep people reading that arrive via google searches.
Writing a tutorial, a list of “simple steps,” tips, tricks and other helpful posts will benefit your blog greatly. As you chat with friends and family, take note of what you say or tips you talk about and then blog them! Maybe someone told you an easy recipe for cheesecake or you discovered a fast way to keep the house tidy. How-to’s are very SEO (search engine optimization) friendly. This means that when people google “how to keep cast iron skillets clean” your blog post is more likely to come up. Photos are always very beneficial to these types of posts, so make them beautiful and your post will be shared all over the web.
Make it local
Keep your eye on the local news. When an event is coming to town, blog it! Lots of bloggers have found a huge benefit to writing posts about events in their area. 2 Wired 2 Tired covers the Cleveland area very efficiently and I know she has readers from that area that go to her blog for those posts. This is excellent for SEO and your blog becomes locally tied.
Above all, write from your heart. Blogging should always end up being enjoyable, even if you hit a few rocky patches now and again!