.blog Featured Site: appetiteforwine.blog

Louis Pasteur once said, “A bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world.” And that’s a quote that gives you a sneak peek into our latest featured dotblogger, appetiteforwine.blog. It’s a blog that focuses on the story behind the wine.

Meet Appetite for Wine

One of the beautiful things about blogs is they allow people to share their passion and connect with others who feel the same way. This featured dotblog is a great example. It’s written by Kent Reynolds and Robyn Raphael-Reynolds, a couple who enjoys fine wine and everything that goes along with it.

Kent and Robyn live in California close to Wine Country. They’ve been sharing their passion for wine on the blog for almost six years. As you follow along with their stories you start to feel like you know them. Their content is engaging and personal – they even shared the story of their wedding with their readers in 2019.

What you’ll find on the Appetite for Wine blog

Posts on the blog fall into several categories.

Destinations – Kent and Robyn share their experiences at vineyards and wineries around the world. They mainly cover US destinations such as Napa Valley and even a vineyard in Hawaii. But they also include other countries like Greece, Portugal, and Canada, with stories on both the well-known and lesser-known locations.

Reviews – What would a wine blog be without reviews of wine? The Appetite for Wine blog does reviews on wine and wine-related products like books about wine, and music suitable for wineries. Their reviews provide a deep level of detail and knowledge of the subject which helps them build credibility as experts. 

General posts – Kent and Robyn also write posts that offer general tips and stories. They share their personal experiences, like the story of the first wine tasting they hosted and tips for protecting bottles of wine as you travel.

Monthly Wine Writing Challenge Appetite for Wine participates in a monthly writing challenge. It was created by other wine writers looking to boost creative wine writing.

This is a great example of a blog with a clearly defined niche. Everything on it is related to wine. This helps readers to know exactly what they’ll find when they first encounter the blog.

How the blog is being used

appetitieforwine.blog is all about one couple sharing their passion for wine. After just a few minutes on the blog, you can tell Kent and Robyn have a real interest in and understanding of wine. This makes it easy for others with the same interest to connect with them.

They aren’t focused on selling products or services on the blog. They do provide links for some products, but it’s not the main purpose of the blog. There are also a few ads on the website such as above the header and in the sidebar. This is an easy way to monetize the blog.

They also highlight wine industry awards and recognition they’ve received. Examples include Top 100 Wine Blogs and The Great Seal of the Wine Century Club. Having these badges on the blog helps to build their credibility with readers.

Overall, you get the impression that the blog is a creative writing outlet for the couple. It’s a way to write about and share their information about something they love with others who have the same interest in wine.

Back to the basics of blogging

In 2021, blogs are being used in many diverse ways. They are used as marketing tools. They’re used to engage potential clients. But appetiteforwine.blog is a fantastic reminder that blogging is a great way to share your passion while connecting with those that have shared interests. Do you have a passion worth sharing? Starting your own blog might be a way to find your audience.

.blog Featured Site: legendsofsport.blog

If you’re a sports fan, we have the perfect dotblogger for you to meet. Today’s featured blog is legendsofsport.blog run by sports photographer Andrew D. Bernstein.

Meet the blogger

When it comes to sports photography, Andrew D. Bernstein is one of the greatest. Back in the 1980s, he was part of the team that created NBA Photos, which later became the worldwide leader in NBA photography licensing. He’s also been in many other ventures over the years.

His company is called Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography, Inc. Over the years, he has worked with LA teams, including the Dodgers, Clippers, Kings, and Lakers. His work has been used by companies that include Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Nike, and Reebok.

Andrew helped revolutionize sports action photography indoors through new technology and tactics. His accomplishments and work speak for themselves.

Outside of photography, Andrew has made numerous appearances on radio and television to share his work. He is also the founder of the media and events company Legends of Sport.

What is Legends of Sport?

Legends of Sport is a blog and podcast. The podcast is in its third year and is now being distributed by the Los Angeles Times. In the podcast, Andrew interviews different sports legends to learn more about their careers. These legends even share details about their personal lives. Some of the athletes who have been featured on the podcast include Kobe Bryant, Kevin Love, Steve Kerr, and Candace Parker.

Legends of Sport allows Andrew to share his passion for the sports world in a different way rather than solely through his photography.

Similar to the podcast, the blog allows him to dive deeper into sports topics and legendary teams and athletes. The blog was created to celebrate sports teams, athletes, events, and historic moments. Topics include legendary teams like the 1987 Los Angeles Lakers and the 2011 Dallas Mavericks, to name a few examples.

On the blog, Andrew also includes a section called “Today in Sports History.” He posts new content here every single day. These posts share the stories of iconic moments and unforgettable athletes from history. There is a lot of work that goes into posting on a daily basis, but it adds a great element to the blog.

While the Legends of Sport blog is not about Andrew’s photography business, he includes links back to his business website. This enables people to learn more about him and the work that he does.

If sports are one of your passions, we encourage you to browse legendsofsport.blog and relive some of your favorite moments from sports history.

Using a blog to share your passion

Blogs are a fun way to connect with others who share your passion. Andrew is a sports fan who turned his passion into a career in photography. Now, he’s also expanded it into a podcast. Andrew’s blog is a place where sports fans can learn about their favorite legends. It’s also a platform where Andrew freely shares his interests with the world.

In the past, we’ve featured blogs that businesses and entrepreneurs use to support their marketing efforts. The Legends of Sport blog drives traffic to the podcast and Andrew’s photography website. However, it’s also a place for him to share his love of sports and connect with others who feel the same.

The great thing about the diversity of blogs is that you can use them to write about and share information on any topic. It is a great way for you to create content and find a community of people with whom you can share your passion the same way that Andrew does. 

Top 5 tips to be a successful blogger!

Successful bloggers have one, great thing in common – they’re authentic. Sure, it’s a word we hear online all the time – ‘be authentic, just be yourself, etc, etc’, but what does it actually mean for your blog?

First up, it’s a good idea to consider why people read blogs, specifically, your blog. There are millions of them out there, so what’s going to make yours unique? Sometimes, it’s not about doing the right thing (because the right thing  is for you to figure out), but about avoiding following the crowd. Find your style and let people see the real you. We’ve put together these five tips to becoming a successful blogger. 

  1. Find your voice

Here’s where the authenticity comes in, right at the start. Try visiting your own blog or website from the perspective of a stranger. How does your personality come across? What keywords would you use to sum up the person behind this blog? Are these words a reflection of who you really are? It’s a great exercise to do, not just now but regularly. Keep yourself on track and ask friends you trust to do the same thing too for extra valuable feedback.

If your blog is surrounding a particular niche or branding, make sure this is instantly recognisable too. Web visitors (particularly new ones) don’t hang around for long, so it’s crucial to make that impact right away and deliver a strong message of ‘This is who I am and this is what you can expect from my blog’. Blogger, Stephanie Cristi does this well here.

Just like Stephanie, lots of bloggers choose to blog under their own name, mirroring this in their domain. It’s a quick and easy way for your audience to identify with you and make a connection with your individuality. Make sure you check out .blog for availability. We recently released 3-character premium domain names – your perfect domain name could be available so grab it before someone else does. 

OK, so you’ve got your first impression nailed, now what? When you’re blogging, remember that readers might see you as a brand just as much as a person, and while you’ve spent your whole life defining who you are as a person, you might not have given so much time to figuring out who you are as a brand. 

Traditionally, brands spend a ton of time figuring out what makes them who they are. This includes everything from a mission statement to company values you can find on most brand websites. We’re not suggesting you go this far and have documents written up on this stuff if you don’t want to, but take a little time to consider how you might want to present yourself. Your blog’s tone and voice is a key part of this. 

By making blogging a part of who you are, you’ll have regular opportunities to check in with your authenticity. If your brand starts to feel like a real effort to project, you can probably bet something isn’t right and you might need to go back to the drawing board to figure out the kind of voice you are communicating to your audience. 

  1. Build an online community

If you’re a blog reader and not just a blogger (and you should be, it’s a great way to learn from the best), you’ll know that blogging doesn’t solely take place on your website. Your blog needs to extend to your whole community, to draw in new audiences and reach people who might not otherwise find you. 

By thinking of yourself as part of a wider community, you’ll find loads of opportunities to share your work with others, build loyal readers and allow people to get to know you in micro doses. Yes, we’re talking about social media here. Whether you’re active several times a day, or choose to schedule your content ahead of time, social media is a great tool for giving people bitesize chunks of your blog (and therefore your brand) in a quick, engaging way which invites more web traffic. 

If you do opt for the latter and prefer the scheduling option, make sure you still dip in regularly and respond to comments in real time. When you’re new to blogging, that back-and-forth rapport between you and your readers is key to building a reputation as someone active, who engages with their community and is there for their audience and not just the opportunities that blogging brings. 

Blogger, Andrea Badgley has written some great further tips on networking here.

  1. Write, write, and write some more

There’s a saying amongst creators: Done is better than perfect. Why? It’s simple, because perfect often isn’t done! If you’re waiting to create a flawless blog post, your audience will get bored and move on. By providing consistent, regular content, you’re feeding their appetite and practicing your craft. This perfectly imperfect method is demonstrated here really well by blogger, Tess.

Let’s get honest here – you might look back at your early blog posts in a few years’ time and cringe – but that’s OK! What we’re looking for here is development and practice. You can only achieve that by doing and refining your work as you go. 

Find a rhythm to your writing, or let one find you. By writing regularly and keeping yourself in check with your brand (see back to tip #1), it will feel more natural the more you do it. 

Think about the way you work best too – is there a time of day you enjoy writing? Could you schedule an hour every week or more to regularly commit yourself to writing at this time?

If writing your content still feels daunting at times, remember that it’s not the only content you can offer. Break up your blog posts with relevant and engaging images, videos, and graphics to highlight your brand further, and connect with your audience visually. 

  1. SEO

Those three little letters you will definitely have heard of, but how much do you know about them?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It’s basically Google’s and other search engines’ way of figuring out what your blog is about to be able to present it to the right audiences.

Once you’re confident that you’ve started out on the right foot with your blog, giving some time to exploring SEO is a great idea and a tool that will benefit you enormously if done well. 

People often make the mistake of thinking that you need a ton of keywords in your blog to hit as many audience opportunities as possible, but in reality just honing in on one or two is often more successful.

Consider what your next blog post is about, and do some keyword research around that. Tools like Google AdWords and Answer the Public let you see the real-world phrases people are using to find content on your topic, and you can use them to build the strength of your blog post. 

As well as this, take a moment to go into the SEO settings in your blog with each post. You’ll have the opportunity to add meta tags, keyword listings and SEO summaries that help Google understand what your blog post covers and how helpful it will be to people searching your topics. 

  1. Enjoy the process

If there is one thing to remember in blogging, it’s that it is meant to be fun. Sure, if your blog takes off and you build a great community there’ll be times that you feel the pressure to create, but overall, blogging is something to enjoy. Building a blog takes time, so don’t fret if it feels like nothing much is happening right away, just focus on your achievements and celebrate every milestone, however small they start off. 

What’s enjoyable right at the start might be different to what’s enjoyable six months from now, but whatever stage you’re at, keep it light, keep it up, and enjoy the process. 

Want more great blogging tips? Check out our post on the best blogging tips and tricks here.

Did You Know Blogging Can Grow Your Small Business?

As a small business owner, you may be thinking about starting a blog. Maybe you started one, but you’re not sure what to do with it. You might be second-guessing yourself, especially if you’re not seeing the results you expected.

The truth is, a blog can definitely help your business. Having a blog can bring more traffic to your website. You can grow an online following and get people excited about your brand. You can convert web searchers into customers, and increase your profits. 

If you’re wondering how to do that or are feeling stuck, you’ve come to the right place. We want to share some of the valuable strategies we’ve learned about blogging to help you improve your blog’s effectiveness and reach.

Drive Traffic

When you first start blogging, there are a few strategies you can use to drive traffic to your website. 

  1. Blog Consistently 

The first one is to blog consistently. For some businesses, the magic number is one to four times a week. If you are regularly producing quality content, your traffic should organically increase over time, without any additional advertisement. 

  1. Create quality content (typically longer)

Longer posts can help your blog to rank higher in searches. However, you should always choose quality over quantity. You want to bring value to your readers, and that means you need to provide well-researched information. Longer posts can help you to show off your expertise, too. 

If creating long, quality posts on a regular basis is not a viable option, you might want to try another strategy. Using targeted keywords on your blog can also help you to drive traffic to your blog or website.

  1. Target keywords

 Keywords are words that people are likely to type into a search engine when they’re looking for content like yours. Using keywords can make your blog rank higher in searches. 

To find quality keywords, you’ll want to either hire someone to do keyword research for you, or use a keyword research tool like SEMRush, Ahrefs or Google Ads Keyword Planner.

To do your own keyword search, simply type in phrases that you think someone looking for the type of material you produce would search for. Then, the keyword planner will generate some keywords. For WordPress, there is a section on the right where you can add your keywords. 

If all of this seems overwhelming to you, we can help you to get started with SEO (search engine optimization). 

Engage your customers

  1. Provide valuable content

When people land on your page, you want to keep them engaged. When you provide your viewers with valuable content, they will be more likely to stay on your page and return to it.

  1. Add visuals

One of the ways you can keep people interested is by creating stunning visuals. By using images and videos, you can help people understand and retain your content longer. In fact, 90% of the information that is sent to our brains is visual, so it will definitely enhance your message.

Image source: https://hub.uberflip.com/blog/show-don-t-tell-here-s-why-your-brand-needs-visual-content

You may also want to consider using interactive visual content, such as augmented reality, a 3D technology that allows your viewer to try out your product or view it from different angles. 

While you’ve got your audience’s attention, you can educate them about your services and products. When you prove that you’re a leader in your industry, people will naturally want to follow you. 

Being a leader in an industry means you have expertise and are offering someone something they need. You are adept at showing someone the value you are offering, and how it could make their life better. You read up on your industry and stay relevant.

  1. Tap into trends and questions being asked

When you’re relevant, you show your audience you know their world. You can tap into cultural and industry trends, while maintaining your brand’s unique voice. 


You can stay in touch with the questions people are asking, which will require research. You might want to check out Reddit, Quora, Think with Google, and BuzzSumo to get you started. 

You can start by asking what people are talking about in your industry. Once you’ve read a number of articles on a subject, you can enter those conversations and share your unique perspective or show how your company is solving some of the issues people are raising.

Be social 

  1. Start with engaging 

In blogging, there is a give and take. If you like and comment on other blogs, you’ll find that people will often respond in kind. On a blogging platform, you can connect with others by being social and personable, just like you would at a networking event. 

  1. Collaborate with others

One of the great things about using a blogging platform is that you can collaborate. You can invite guest writers to bring a fresh voice or expertise to your blog. If you invite another blogger in your industry to share a post on your website, they may want you to share one on theirs. 

  1. Share on social platforms

You can also use social media platforms to promote your blog. People often create Facebook groups or send tweets about their blogs. 

LinkedIn is the perfect place to share your newest article. You can use Pinterest to attract another group of fans. Each platform will provide a different following, increasing your reach. 

  1. Build an email list

Networking through social media and a blogging platform can help you to grow your audience. You can use your blog as a way to connect with and gather email addresses from potential clients. 

You can also create a mailing list and send out newsletters or features on new products or services. You can ask potential clients questions, and encourage them to comment on your blog. 

  1. Listen and review what’s trending

Once you start amassing a following, you can practice social listening by seeing what gets people’s attention. What is your audience responding to? You can also get some ideas from other businesses in your industry who have had success with blogging. 

  1. Find influencers

Social media influencers can help spread the word about your content, too. Influencer marketing has become a crucial part of advertising, especially for small businesses. 

Social influencers are people on social media who have already amassed a following. For a fee, they will advertise your product, service, and content to their following. 

Influencer marketing can get expensive if you are trying to work with someone with a large following but partnering with micro (1,000 to 100,000 followers) and nano-influencers (less than 1,000 followers) can be an affordable and a quick way to reach large amounts of people who may be interested in your products or services, especially if the influencer regularly advertises products in your industry. 

Conclusion

We hope these tips have given you what you need to make your blog a success. If you’re still not sure where to begin, we can help! We’d love to help you to start marketing your blog today.

We can also help you to get a domain name that will increase your visibility and professionalism.

We’re here to support and help you on your journey to growing your business with your blog. Like many other small businesses, you can find a way to stand out and thrive in an overcrowded online community.

.blog Featured Site: naturalhistorymuseum.blog

We love that the diversity of blogs means they can be owned by your next-door neighbor or an institution that’s been operating for over 140 years. The featured dotblogger we have for you today is naturalhistorymuseum.blog.

The Natural History Museum is located in London. They opened their doors in 1881 and have stayed on the cutting edge of science ever since. This popular tourist destination and leading science research centre also maintains an active and engaging blog.

Meet the Natural History Museum

If you’re interested in natural history, you’ll be amazed at the diversity of exhibitions on display at the Natural History Museum. 

The museum curates more than 80 million life and earth specimens that are grouped into collections of zoology, botany, mineralogy, paleontology, and entomology. And due to the long history of the museum, it’s even home to important specimens collected throughout history, such as those of Charles Darwin.

As well as being a tourist attraction, the museum has a strong focus in the areas of research, education, conservation, and digital collections, with an emphasis on discovery, learning, and sharing their findings with the world.

How The Natural History Museum Uses their Blog

The Natural History Museum uses its blog to give readers a behind-the-scenes look at the museum’s activities. It’s a platform through which librarians, researchers, curators, staff, and volunteers can share their experience and expertise with the world. Their collective blog posts provide patrons with more in-depth information than they would gather just from visiting the museum for a day.

In one post, you can read about what the museum staff do to prep for moving specimens to a new location. In other posts, you can find the daily diary of a Principal Curator. And in recent years, they have been sharing information about the work they’re doing to digitize and preserve the work, research, and discoveries of the past.

How the blog helps engage and educate

The blog has become a valuable resource for meeting the demands of inquisitive minds, and even more so during the pandemic. While the museum was closed due to Covid, the blog has continued to provide a way for people to stay engaged and connected with the work of the museum.

Overall, the blog serves two purposes:

1. Allows people to read updates and engage with the museum

The Natural History Museum effectively uses its blog to keep people engaged in the work they’re doing and in the natural history around them. They use their blog to provide insight into  the detailed workings of the museum. Instead of simply looking at historic specimens, they answer the who, what, why, when, where, and how questions of their passionate readers.

In addition to educating, and sharing information, the museum uses its blog to inspire their readers to get involved. For example, they recently challenged readers to participate in the worldwide City Nature Challenge. Those interested were encouraged to get outside, photograph nature in their city, and share their observations.

2. Provides volunteers a platform for sharing experiences

The Natural History Museum blog also provides a medium for staff and volunteers to share their passion, experiences, stories, and tips with others. By sharing the pride and passion they have for their work and workplace with the world, they also maintain their individual involvement. And it can encourage others who may want to volunteer at the museum or who are interested in pursuing a career in this line of work.

Blogs are fun ways to engage and educate

If you’re looking for ways to further engage and educate an audience, this blog is a great example. The content takes the museum experience a step further. It is a perfect resource for museum visitors who are left wanting more when they leave. The museum blog provides a wealth of knowledge and an insider’s guide to the treasures of the Natural History Museum.

.blog Featured Site: openaircinema.blog

Can you imagine sitting on the beach, with an umbrella drink in your hand, the waves gently lapping on the shore, and watching your favorite movie? Or what about enjoying a rooftop viewing of a film with the stars above your head. That’s the reality one of our dotbloggers is making happen for people everywhere.

In this edition of our Featured Blogger series, we want to introduce you to openaircinema.blog.

A little about Open-Air Cinema

Back in the day, drive-in movies were a popular form of entertainment for people of all ages. Over the years, the movie-going experience transitioned to luxury indoor theaters. But a growing trend is showing that people love the experience of the open-air cinema.

Going to see a movie is no longer about simply watching the film. It’s about the experience that you receive. While indoor theaters have looked to level-up what they provide, some even including wait staff and full service restaurants, one company is helping people get in touch with a much bigger movie-going experience—the open-air cinema.

The AIRSCREEN Company has a website selling the inflatable movie screens that are being used to create these unforgettable events and experiences.

The Open Air Cinema blog shares the story of the company while inspiring people to want to learn more or even make a purchase. While the blog may not be the place where the company lets you purchase their product, it does a great job of helping to promote their products by telling the story of the incredible results they deliver.

How the blog is being used

The blog is being used in a few key ways to help showcase the inflatable screens the company sells on airscreen.com.  

The first thing you’ll notice as soon as you land on the blog is their incredible use of photography. Instead of words, your screen is filled with a single image. You’re immediately watching a slideshow of events using The AIRSCREEN Company’s inflatable movie screens. It piques your interest from the start

The blog has a small section sharing the history of open-air cinema, starting back in 1895. There is also a section that shares the stories of the events their customers have created across multiple continents.

Lastly, the blog shares open-air cinema ideas others have pulled together to showcase how you can do the same. And these aren’t your basic ideas. They cover everything from film festivals and drive-ins to rooftop and hot tub showings.

They even share the story of how the premiere of “Mission Impossible Fallout” took place on the cliffs of the Norwegian fjords requiring a 4-hour hike for attendees. Not only does it sound exciting, but it showcases the many diverse ways that their movie screens can be used.

A small part of something bigger

Sometimes a blog works solely on its own. It’s not connected to anything else or serving any purpose outside of what you see on the blog. Then, there are blogs like openaircinema.blog that are just one important marketing piece of something bigger. This is a great example of a blog that pairs together with the commercial site to help showcase the cinema experience, tell stories of its customers and drive interest in the company’s products. 

The AIRSCREEN Company uses this blog to highlight their products and how they can be used. They do a wonderful job of telling the stories of their customers. Browsing around on the blog leaves you wishing you had an open-air cinema in your local area. Better yet, the AIRSCREEN company hopes you’ll be inspired to create your own.

Even without having a “buy now” button anywhere on the blog, their use of the blog encourages you to want to make a purchase by directing you to airscreen.com. Their blog content is purposeful and their images are stunning. Every part of the blog is serving its purpose well.

This is just one more example of all the amazing ways that a blog can be used!

How to Start a Blog in 5 Simple Steps

So, you’ve decided to start a blog—congratulations! There are many ways a blog can be used for personal or business purposes. But before you can start sharing your stories and knowledge with the world, you have to learn how to start a blog.

Here are 5 simple steps to get your blog up and running.

1. Find a Niche

“Niche” is a word that you’ll likely stumble upon as you begin researching how to start a blog.  

For example, travel is a niche for a blog but you may want to choose something even more specific. If you say you have a “travel blog” it doesn’t fully communicate exactly what type of information you share or who your target audience is.

Instead, narrow your focus. In the example of a travel blog, you could focus on families who enjoy traveling abroad. This specifies the topics you write about and makes it easy for readers to identify if your blog is a good fit for them.

If you’re struggling with the idea of narrowing your niche and targeting potential readers, read this article to learn more: Why your blog needs a niche and how to find the right one.

2. Choose a host and CMS or platform

Now that you know the niche for your blog, it’s time to choose a platform and web host. A platform or a content management system (CMS) is the foundation of your blog. It’s what you will use to build your blog. A CMS is much more flexible than a blogging platform. A blogging platform is typically for one specific type of content (blog posts), while a CMS can help you manage virtually any type of content like static or dynamic pages, pages, ecommerce, contact posts, private areas. Both store your blog’s content on servers and make it possible for you to manage your blog. 

Here are just some of the popular blogging content management systems and blogging platforms.

  • WordPress (most popular)
  • Squarespace 
  • Weebly
  • Drupal
  • Blogger
  • Drupal
  • Joomla

If you want to build a WordPress blog, there are many hosting options to choose from.

Examples, of some popular WordPress hosting options include:

  • WordPress.com
  • GoDaddy
  • Bluehost
  • Dreamhost
  • SiteGround
  • Hostgator

When choosing a hosting provider, do your research! This can make a noticeable difference in your experience and the overall performance of your blog.

3. Choose your domain name

Now it’s time to choose your domain name. This is the URL of your blog. The domain or URL you’re on right now is my.blog.

Consider the following when choosing a domain name:

  • Spelling and memorability: Choose a domain that’s easy for people to find. For example, use common spellings of words instead of clever alternatives.
  • Ranking keywords: Using keywords you want to rank for in your domain name can help you build your SEO rankings. Make sure these keywords are directly related to your niche.
  • Social media: Using social media can help you build your blog following. When choosing your domain, make sure there are social media handles that relate to it so you can build strong branding. Even if you don’t want to use social media right now, claim the handles so you have the option in the future.
  • Consider the domain extension: While .com has been one of the most popular, there are advantages to choosing a newer TLD such as .blog which immediately communicates to readers your website’s purpose.

Here is a list of our registrar partners where you can register a domain name.

4. Decide what you want your blog to do

In addition to choosing a niche, it’s important to think about how you want to use your blog. There are many directions you could choose including:

5. Design your blog

The exact process of how you design your blog will depend on the platform you use. But in general, your blog design includes choosing a theme or template for the design. Typically there are basic free options but you can also pay for blog template design as well.

For branding reasons it’s also wise to choose blog colors and even a logo. Doing so can make it easier for your audience to recognize your content online.

It’s also helpful to use images on your blog to make it more visually appealing. Breaking up long sections of words with images also makes it easier for readers to scan and read.

Aside from the visual design of your blog, it’s important to consider the user experience you’re creating. Make it easy for readers to navigate your site. If they have to work hard to find what they want, they’ll leave and find an easier-to-use blog.

While you’re designing, don’t forget to create About and Contact pages. The About page helps your audience connect further with you. And the Contact page makes it easy for people to get in touch with you. Many bloggers overlook adding a contact page which could lead to lost opportunities for you in the future.

As you work on designing your blog remember it’s OK to start simple and make changes as your comfort level grows.

Getting started with your blog posts

Now we’re onto a bloggers favorite part of getting started—writing blog posts! You want to have some content published and ready for readers before you launch your blog.

As you get started, it’s also helpful to create a plan for making time to write new blog posts so you can consistently provide readers with fresh new content.

One way to make it easier to stay consistent is to create a content calendar. This helps you to know what you’re going to write about when you sit down at your computer to get started.

If you’re excited to have a blog but are still unsure of the best way to write a blog post, we share 10 different blog formats you can use here.

Let the adventure begin

As you get started, don’t get caught up in the comparison game thinking your blog needs to look and operate like blogs that have been up and running for years. Get started where you are and continue to grow and develop your skills as you go.

Following these simple steps will get your blog up and running. Before you know it, you’ll have your own little piece of the internet to share your stories with the world. 

.blog Featured Site: goingsomewhere.blog

If you think of incredible storytelling and sharing experiences when you think of blogs, then you’re going to love the featured blog we have for you today. We’d like to introduce you to Elisha and her blog goingsomewhere.blog.

Meet Elisha from Going Somewhere

Elisha is a native Australian who fell in love with the idea of traveling the world at a young age. At 21 years old she set out on an adventure that lasted over a year. And while she did much of what she set out to do, instead of crossing the experiences off her list, it ignited a passion to continue to travel.

Elisha is now a professional freelance travel blogger and photographer.

Along with travel tips, her blog offers stories that help to inform readers about cultures and people from many different countries. And because she prefers to travel off the beaten path, and without a structured plan, she’s able to cover topics and experiences that many haven’t had while traveling.

Some of her experiences include:

  • Horseback riding through the Columbian jungle
  • Attending a protest in Palestine
  • Climbing Kilimanjaro
  • Crossing the Iran-Iraqi Kurdistan border
  • Hiking across the desert in Australia
  • Trekking through the Himalayas

Along with traveler tips in general, she’s also able to use her unique perspective to share tips for female solo travelers. For example, she shares tips on acceptable clothing for women when traveling through Iran.

Her blog posts are full of photographs of the beautiful destination landscapes and locals that help bring her stories to life. Even her post sharing the challenges of being a travel writer during the 2020 pandemic does a wonderful job of marrying written narrative with storytelling photography.

How goingsomewhere.blog is being used

Not only is Elisha sharing her own stories and memories on the blog, she’s also sharing valuable information for other travelers.

There are many posts sharing travel tips from her first-hand experience. She has categories on the blog for things like:

  • Country Guides
  • Trek Reports
  • Border Crossings
  • Hiking Tips 
  • Responsible Travel

You can get basic tips for traveling along with specific tips for certain destinations. She enjoys interacting with locals and learning about their culture. She stays in more authentic settings like hostels instead of hotels. This style of travel allows her to provide very practical tips for other travelers. 

Elisha also showcases her work as a paid travel writer on the blog. This allows potential clients to see the type of work she’s done for others along with her own blog posts. They can also reach out to her through her contact page if they’re interested in working with her. It’s a great example of how other writers can use a blog to help draw in potential clients.

The diversity of bloggers

We love how the Going Somewhere blog showcases that blogs are for everyone! They are for people from all demographics and can reach people around the world. Blogs are able to build community with people across all borders who have a shared interest. They unite people together which is something the world needs more of.

Elisha shares personal experiences with cultures and destinations many know little about. Some are areas where many are afraid to travel. This helps to spread awareness for people around the world.

Are you looking to plan your next adventure? Or find a travel writer to write for your own blog? Or maybe you want to read about something outside of your everyday life. We encourage you to check out Elisha’s blog.

Blogs are a tool that anyone can use to get their message out in the world. Whether you want to share about travel like Elisha, or you have a different story to tell, a blog is a great way to do that. As we like to say, a blog is for all the ways you share. 

Time to Migrate to a .blog Domain? Tips to Make it a Smooth Transition

Are you thinking of moving your website over to a .blog domain? 

Maybe your niche is changing and you need a new domain name that reflects that. There are many reasons why you might want to migrate to .blog. While it may feel like a big change, domain migrations are more common than you think. By following a few simple tips, you’ll have a smooth transition for you and your audience.

Reasons to migrate to .blog

There are several instances when it makes sense to migrate your website to a new domain.

You need a domain that clearly communicates what you’re doing. One of the benefits of a .blog domain is that it lets readers know that you’re running a blog from the start. Readers associate blogs with shared knowledge and experience, so this can be attractive to an audience looking for information in a certain area.

You’ve rebranded and need an update. If you’ve rebranded, your existing domain might not make sense anymore. To have a domain that communicates what your website is about might require you to migrate to a new domain.

Your current domain is difficult to market. Domains that are long or use uncommon spellings of words can be difficult for your audience to remember. Or you may have registered a creative name that you thought was catchy at the time but have since found that your audience doesn’t make the connection you were hoping they would with it. If your domain is difficult to market, it might be time to migrate to a new one.

Tips to make the transition easier

Choose the right URL. If you’re going to go through the process of migrating to a new domain, make sure you choose the right one. You want it to be unique, coincide with your brand, and be memorable. Learn more about choosing the best domain name in our blog post “5 Tips For Selecting The Best Domain Name For Your Blog“.

Have a communication plan in place. You want to clearly communicate to your audience that a change is coming so you don’t catch them by surprise. Once you’ve secured the new domain name, share the upcoming change on your blog, email and social media several times before the move.

Delete what you don’t want to migrate. If there is any content on your site that will no longer apply after you switch domains, delete it before starting the process. There’s no reason to migrate over content that won’t serve a purpose after the move. You should also search for any references to the old domain name and update that content. 

How to change your domain name

It’s crucial to have a migration plan in place to ensure a smooth transition to your new .blog domain. This is broken into 3 simple phases.

Prelaunch planning

The prelaunch phase is broken down into a few very important steps. This includes everything from checking the history of your new domain to benchmarking your current analytics.

It’s important to have a clear understanding of your current website, including URLs, backlinks, rankings, and indexing. This information helps you to see the impact of your migration. During the prelaunch stage, it’s also critical to generate a new sitemap along with mapping and creating redirects.

Launch

The launch phase is when your new domain goes live. During this phase there are some key steps to take to ensure Google finds your new domain properly like submitting your XML sitemap(s) in Search Console. You also want to verify your redirects and annotate google analytics so you can remember when you made the switch. 

Post Launch

The post launch phase of migration is when you monitor the results. This is a great time to be putting out new links to the blog along with doing some promotional work to draw new traffic in.

You’ll also want to keep an eye on your site for potential errors so you can correct them as you find them. It’s also important to watch your rankings to compare them to your established benchmarks to see how your new domain is performing.

We’ve created a free guide and checklist of the steps you can take from start to finish as you migrate to .blog, How to Move Your Blog to a New Domain, to make it easier for you.

Common concerns and solutions

You probably have some reservations and concerns about moving to a new domain. After all, you’ve spent time building up your ranking and bringing traffic to your current site. These concerns are normal, but thankfully, there are simple solutions to help address them.

One of the most common concerns is the fear of losing some of your audience. Having a communication plan in place before migrating can make the transition smooth for your existing audience. You can make announcements about the update to get your audience excited. You can also encourage them to join your email list which makes it easy for you to stay in contact with them throughout the process.

Another concern you may have is experiencing a negative change in your SEO or losing backlinks. Establishing redirects can help address this and you can contact any site owners that you know are directly linking to you to provide them with the updated link. Check out this article on Seth Godin migrating his popular blog over to Seths.blog as an example of how to do it the right way.

Any website change comes with risks. However, with proper planning and by following the steps in our guide, your new domain name will have a long term positive impact on your SEO and brand.  

Ready to make the move?

If you’re ready to start migrating over to your new domain, the tips above will help you experience the fewest bumps in the road. While it’s normal to experience some drops in SEO and traffic for a short time, the right migration plan will help you bounce back before you know it.

Once you’re up and running with your new domain, you’ll be happy you took the chance and made the move. You’ll have your new domain established where you can continue to proudly share your stories and messages with your audience, new and old.

.blog Featured Site: fresheggsdaily.blog

We love it when we come across a fun and unique blog. We’d like to introduce you to a farmer who is excelling with her blog, fresheggsdaily.blog. This is a great example of the different ways a blog can be used to optimize other business opportunities.

Who is Fresh Eggs Daily®?

Fresh Eggs Daily® is a business and blog run by Lisa Steele. Lisa is a 5th generation chicken farmer and has grown a following of almost a million accounts across her social media channels. She’s known as “the Queen of the Coop”.

And if that wasn’t enough, Lisa is also an author, had her own show, and has appeared on many television programs. She also created a line of natural poultry products. It’s safe to say when it comes to chicken farming, Lisa is the guru. Her blog does a great job of sharing valuable information with other chicken farmers while also supporting her business.

How Fresh Eggs Daily® is using their blog

Fresh Eggs Daily® isn’t what you might expect from a chicken farming blog. Lisa has done a fantastic job of sticking to her niche market—people raising chickens—and her blog and business are excelling because of it.

She is using her blog effectively in many different ways to grow her brand. And while there is a lot of information to consume, it’s all directly related to her specific niche.

Here are some of the things Lisa is using her blog for:

Keeping in touch with her audience

A great way to help your audience to engage further with your blog and content is to get them to sign up for your email list. When you do this, you gain their permission to talk to them right in their inbox instead of waiting for them to show up at your blog.

As soon as you get to the Fresh Eggs Daily® blog, she has a popup inviting you to sign up.

Selling ads 

In a recent post, we shared the different ways that you can use your blog to make money. Lisa is using several of those strategies on her blog and one of them is advertising space. As you browse her website, you’ll come across multiple ads.

Selling products

Not only is Lisa using her blog to make money from advertising, she’s also using it to sell products. Her shop pages link out directly to her Amazon store where she sells all kinds of products for raising chickens.

Promoting other products

Lisa has done a great job of putting her blog to use for her business. She had a TV show for a few years along with six books. There are links for everything right on her blog making it easy to buy her book and watch her show.

Offering press and media links

To make it easy for people to reach out to work with her, Lisa includes a Media page on her blog with all the necessary details that anyone would need.

What’s your passion?

There truly is a market out there for just about any topic that you can dream up. If there is something that you’re interested in, there’s a good chance that others are interested in it too. Starting a blog is a great way to pull that community of like-minded people together.

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