Celebrating Milestones & Random Blogging Tips

Hi, friends! Last time I wrote a post like this in March (Six Lessons in Six Months of Blogging), I had just passed 100 WordPress followers, and I now have over 250. Woot, woot!

The number isn’t impressive compared to other bloggers, but I’m willing to wait for slower audience growth if it means I can post Christian devotionals along with classic literature and movie comparisons and exercise posts and other random things without limiting myself to a niche.

Screenshot_20180627-142335_WordPress.jpg

I also got this notification the other day. Thanks, WordPress, for marking milestones at seemingly arbitrary points, lol.

I genuinely try to build a community on my blog; I spend hours a day reading/liking other posts, leaving comments, and responding to comments, etc. As a result, I have a high engagement level for my follow count. I hope I can always find time to support other bloggers.

Anyways, enough rambling! These are some random blogging tips/things I’ve thought about or noticed lately. Don’t be offended if you’re guilty on some of these; you’re perfectly entitled to think I’m wrong. πŸ˜‰

Stop It With the Pop-Up Ads

I understand there’s a delicate balance between necessary self-promotion and abrasiveness, but I feel annoyed when I click on a website and don’t even get one second to look at it before a window pops up and blocks the post I’m reading while asking for my email address. I’ve seen some pop-ups that appeared at the top rather than consuming the screen, so that’s a smart way to do it if you feel compelled to use a pop-up.

De-Clutter Your Website

Yes, there’s fifty widget options. No, you don’t need to use them all. A website with too many widgets is a tough-to-navigate, slow-loading eyesore. I myself use the widgets for Facebook, Twitter, Follow on WordPress, Follow via Email, and Categories.

Be Mindful of Colors

Working in a digital studio, I thought the advice we gave on colors was kinda obvious…’til I started blogging. No, neon green + blue + red is not a good palette! These articles–one,Β two–have helpful info on color schemes.

Another color tip: useΒ canva.comΒ to design logos, banners, etc. Once you find the precise colors you want to use, write down the number codes for the colors so you can use the exact same colors in promotional materials. For example, the purple and pink in both my logo and Facebook cover photo are the exact same.

Optional: Change Footer

I figured this out when making other websites. The default WP footer reads, “Blog at WordPress.Com” but there’s other footer options under “Site Identity” on the “Customize” page. My favorite is the logo with no words.

Comment Hop to Find Active Users

In the past, I’ve recommended growing an audience by browsing tags or searching words and seeking interesting blogs. Unfortunately, I’ve recently realized there’s a lot more bloggers than blog-readers…I want to call it self-absorption, but maybe some people don’t have the time or don’t see the need to build a community.

Perusing the comments sections of posts I like has led me to some bloggers who I know are actually willing to listen (read/comment on others’ posts) and not just speak (write posts but never read others’ posts).Β 

That’s all my advice for now. Thanks for reading, now and always! Do you agree with my blogging tips?

 

37 comments

  1. The common thread in your blogs, regardless of topic, is a brief and interesting post. I am often challenged to eat better, to exercise, to read classics, and to sing old hymns because your information makes me WANT to do better. Keep up the good work!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel you on not trying to grow an audience–to each their own. It’s better to have a few followers who always read your stuff than to have hundreds of followers who don’t actually read your stuff anyways.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great stuff! I have neither the time nor the motivation to really work on my page layout, but it works for what I need it to do. I’ll occasionally change up templates, but until I have more free time, mine is what it is! Glad I found your page – I love your stuff and I love making connections with other writers. It’s so meaningful to me to have this community of fellow artists with which to engagae.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I really like this post. You offer a lot of good insights. My wife totally agrees with you on the pop-ups. Like you, I believe that being patient while letting your “numbers” grow is a good approach. The “numbers” aren’t worth compromising your principles.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Congrats on your milestones, Lily!

    I am catching up now with my favourite blog reads after the holidays and I’m happy to see that you have reached 250 followers πŸ™‚ Also, great advice. I am too lazy these days to bother too much about the design of my blog so I stick to a simple template but I will double-check that the colours are not too offensive to the eye.

    Keep up the great content πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I didn’t start blogging to meet people, but to empty my brain, which was on overload. I also dream of writjng a book. Then, a few people here and there started following me and liking my posts – just like you, which brought me to explore your page. I just figured from the get-go if I’m a female, writing about Christian topics with LOTR, sci-fi, Stranger Things and other movie references, the only person who would ever read my posts would be my sweet mother-in-law. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ i have no idea how to use the WP site. And, I’ve never tried to meet anyone. Thanks for inviting me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I started my blog for a college course and soon realized that this was like the interesting, non-toxic, intelligent version of other social media sites haha! I love that any kind of writer can make friends/fans here as long as they reciprocate a little. πŸ™‚ I am like you in that I write about Christian topics but not exclusively. I still feel insecure sometimes that it’s not smart to mix a Christian blog with a “regular” blog, but it’s all a hobby anyways, hehe.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. You know your last tip is one I really need to get back into. It seems a number of people who used to comment regularly do not as much, and a handful have stopped blogging as well for multiple reasons. And that’s completely okay, I just miss the connection πŸ™‚

    Sometimes I get a few days to a week or so behind on reading and commenting on others’ posts because I can’t comment on everyone’s blog at the same time. I have an inward battle that people are “upset” because I do not get back to them on their post the day they posted it. I don’t think that’s true, but the mind game is totally there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally understand about getting behind and feeling guilty! It happens with me, and I can’t imagine what it’s like for you with so many more to keep up with. There’s only 24 hours in a day, though, so it’s practically impossible to read everyone’s posts. At least we make an effort! πŸ™‚ I get a little frustrated with people who will not reciprocate EVER, and if I read/like/comment on a few posts from someone and can’t get anything back, I stop reading their posts. I know it’s petty, but with so many Christian bloggers who commune with each other, I don’t want to devote limited time to those who don’t! Your comment sections have led me to great bloggers and so do your community spotlights! You blog is like the hub for WP Christians πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, with the multiple writing projects I am working on and blogging, I can’t devote as much time to reading and commenting. What I like doing is picking a blogger and then catch up on what they’ve written and repeat. It is a lot less intimidating to me than seeing everything I have not read in Reader.

        You are not the first to tell me if the blogger does not comment back you don’t bother, and I honestly do not blame you.

        I’m glad that my blog has been a way to showcase others amazing bloggers and for you to meet them in the comment sections as well. God has really taught me this year about community and the focus on community. We must support, encourage, and work together πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh goodness girl, also, ahem…CONGRATS on 250+!! You are getting really close to 300!! I love the random number WordPress picked out haha!! Also, thanks for the footer tip! I did not know that one!

    I am going to spotlight this post on Peeking Beneath, I think you give a lot of awesome tips and I hope they help others. πŸ™‚ The community spotlight post comes out at the end of the month.

    Liked by 1 person

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