Ever wondered about blogging? Want to know what is a blog? Well, you are in the right place. There was a time when people used to write online diaries about many diversified topics and what they like(We still do this but in a more structured way). Soon people came to realize that what they were writing was read by thousands so people took it as a medium to share their information. Soon, people thought to give a name to this type of diary and the word Blog came into being.
What Is A Blog?
A blog is a platform where people share their views on any specific subject. A blog can be used as an online journal. Blog contents are referred to as blog posts and most of the time blog contents are shown in reverse chronological order. In other words, the last post first. Though it’s just a concept and most of the time people see in reverse chronological order, it can be other way around. Because some content management platform allows you to change the chronological order nowadays.
In a nutshell, a blog is an online journal where you can write about anything and everything you want to share with the world.
What Is Blog About?
A blog is just an online journal where an individual or group of people can share their views on any specific topic with the world. So what is a blog about? Well, a blog can be about anything and everything. Like: a blog on politics can be about what the government is doing good or bad. A social blog can be about any or every issue related to society. A tech blog can be on new or interesting technological advancements.
A blog can be even about your personal opinion about yourself. So, you understand that a blog can be about your views on any topic.
As people sometimes write blogs for fun and sharing views, a single blog can cover different topics. Like: your blog can cover many arbitrary topics like which mobile phone is more appealing and what are you thinking about your country’s current political situation. though those are totally different topics, they are on the same blog site. Still, you can manage it easily by categorizing your topic. So, an individual blog can contain many different topics.
Now, think about a community blog where people write about organic foods. Do you think anybody will write about the mobile phone there? Obviously no; because that blog is moderated and the sole purpose of that blog is to promote and discuss organic foods. So, in a nutshell, what is a blog about is actually depends on the purpose of creating that blog.
What is A Blog Used For?
A blog can be used for various purposes; from personal promotion to business promotion and above all it’s an excellent tool for online marketing. Now, the question comes, there are many other tools for marketing. Why blog? Well, a blog basically is a personal journal and it usually has a personal touch. So when you try to promote your product or service with a blog then your readers will easily motivate to check the product or service as they trust you and will value your words. Even if they don’t check or buy that right away, at least they will remember the name as you have mentioned about the product in your blog. The same applies for your personal blog. Your readers will gradually develop a relationship with you and you will gradually become a brand to them. So the blog can’t be a great marketing tool if you can use it the right way.
Reasons? Top Five Reasons Why People Read blogs.
Well, what are you reading now? Yes, that is also a blog. So the answer is yes people still read blogs. There are many reasons why people read blogs and allow me to jot down the top five reasons which will also motivate you to read blogs
- People read blogs for seeking information.
- People read blogs for fun; yes, that’s true!
- People read blogs to find the actual opinion of common people as traditional media are biased most of the time
- People also read blogs because of their affiliation with different communities as some communities have their own blogs
- Variety of opinion.
Those are the most common reason why people still read blogs and if you are not a regular blog reader then you should give it a try. Though very few people actually read the whole content and fewer reads attentively. Most of the time people just scream through the contents and search for the portion that interests them.
What is the Difference Between A blog & A Website?
A blog is also a website but there is a difference. Generally, a blog is a simplified version of a website that usually doesn’t have many features of the business websites we see every day. There is another major difference between a blog and a website and that is, a blog update regularly and usually, a website doesn’t update very frequently. Though the concept of blogs and websites overlaps nowadays as many websites have their own blog section. The actual difference is the intent and how data is presented and there is a very fine line between the two, allow me to jot down a few differences.
Blog Vs Website
- Blog contents are usually dynamic and website contents are usually static as company information doesn’t change frequently
- Blog contents are usually put into posts, on the other hand, website contents are usually put into pages.
- A blog is usually written in an informal way but it can be formal depending on the author’s mode. On the other hand, website content is most of the time formal.
- A blog is managed by an individual or community but a website is mainly managed by the organization
- Blogs post chronological order usually is reverse of the website, that is, the last post first.
Well, these are the common difference between a blog and a website but as I said earlier, nowadays the concept overlaps. An example can make things more clear. As blogs have some special features like discussion, categories, and tags which helps the blog to update more frequently(people tend to discuss in blog more than websites). So the outcome is a better scope of search engine optimization. Business organizations know the benefits of the blog and they usually put a separate blog section on their website. So a blog can be an integral part of a website.
Purpose: Five Reasons Why People Write Blogs.
The purpose of blogs mainly depends on many interesting things. People write blogs for fun, to share their views, to get better visibility on search engines and also for business. No matter what the purpose of the blog is, it requires money and time. Yes, your valuable time because you need to put hours of work to write your views on something.
Market Your Product or Service
A blog can be used for marketing services. Remember, people tend to discuss blogs so if you put some information about any product or service, it gets more attention as people share their views about the benefits or demerits. So it helps to create a buzz and in the long run, helps to boost your sales.
Personal Satisfaction By Helping People
A blog is a way to share personal view about anything. Often authors share their personal views or experience about some issues that they face. So this type of information helps people to find a solution whenever they face the same issue. People who love to help others feel a sort of satisfaction for writing this type of blog as it helps others to solve their problems.
Helps Author To Establish Himself As An Expert
Blogs help authors to establish as an expert of their niche. Still not clear? Let’s explain a little more. A blogger writes a blog on the topics or niche of their choice. It requires a lot of knowledge to write about something. So the author has to do some background research to write. Even after writing the learning doesn’t end as people start to discuss and come up with different questions about the niche or topic. So the author has to again study and reply to the comments. The whole procedure makes the author an expert on their topic or niche.
Blog Helps Authors to Express Their Thoughts Or Opinion
A blog helps the author to express their opinion to mass people. With the revolution of the blogging platform, it became much easier for people to reach mass people. As most of the traditional media are no longer viable solutions for normal people. But a good author can reach thousands of people through their blog and can express their opinion easily to thousands.
Writing Blogs Can Help You To Make Money Online
Blogs can also become a passive income source of a blogger. Some bloggers earn millions through blogging. There are many ways to earn from your blog. You can easily monetize your blog by other people’s products or services. You can even earn a fortune from your blog if the niche is good and if your blog is on the top page of Google. Though it’s not easy to earn from your blog at the beginning, if you have a passion for blogging then it becomes relatively easy.
Structure & Writing Format
The structure of the blog is ever-changing. Because the structure depends on design and content management systems. So it’s a little hard to define the blog structure in simple words but most of the blogs have some basic common things like:
- A header with menu or navigation
- Main content area where the content resides
- A sidebar where people tend to put the categories, social media links or feeds, etc
Well, we now have a basic idea of blog structure but how do we write blogs? Is there any format? Yes, if you use any CMS (Content Management System) then you can even write your blog content in plain English or your preferred language. Some CMS are not that user-friendly. So you may have to write in Markdown or pure HTML. Actually, it depends. If you are creating your blog from scratch without any CMS then you are on your own and HTML can be a good choice. Don’t get disheartened if you are interested in writing blogs because most of the people use CMS like WordPress for writing blogs and almost all of those CMS will allow you to write in your language.
What Is Blogging & Who Is A Blogger?
Let’s make the concept of blogging easier to understand. So what does the word “Blogging” actually means? In a plain & simple way, we can say that running a blog is blogging. In other words, blogging is the set of skills that are required to run a blog. Like- Creating blog content, posting it, sharing to mass people, participating in the discussion section of the blog, etc.
Who is a blogger then? Very easy, the person that does the blogging is a blogger. So, a blogger does all the works that are required for blogging. In other words, a blogger is a person who makes your life easier by coming up with a way of solving the problems and sharing it with people like us to read. What a great bunch of people bloggers are!
Popular 5 Types of Blogs For Bloggers
Now that we already have some ideas on blogs, blogging & bloggers, let’s take a look at the types of blogs. We can differentiate blogs from different perspectives. So types also vary. Discussing all the different types of blogs is not possible here, so we are categorizing them according to intent.
Personal blogs are the blogs where an individual blogger shares his/her personal opinion about different topics. This type of blog is more like a diary or personal journal. As personal bloggers can write about anything and everything, they want(In general terms), they usually create it to become a brand. Though it’s not true for everybody, most of the cases it’s true. So what do people write in personal blogs? Well, people usually write about personal developments, spirituality, coaching, guidance, personal travels, etc. The list will go on & on, so let us truncate the list here. These bloggers are experts in their areas.
You have a great business and you want to attract more customers. Now a business blog can help you to achieve this goal. How? Well, remember that blogs help to engage people into a discussion? So, a blog can easily create a hot discussion about your product where people can share their opinions. Not only that, a blog on your website can help to rank better in search engines if done correctly.
Sometimes we find some blogs link to other business sites that offer some products or services. This type of blog is an affiliate blog where the blogger actually discusses a product or service. Affiliate blogs usually are reviews of different products. But it can also be tutorials about the benefits of using a product or service. The blogger gets small commissions from the sales and can create a steady income source. So if you don’t have your own product but you want to make money online from blogging, then this is a good option for you.
Well, niche blogs are the most common blogs you will find nowadays. Niche blogs are blogs with any specific niche. There are too many topics for niche blogging, so allow me to jot down some of them for you. Example: travel, food, sports, latest scientific researches, health, etc. Sometimes bloggers tend to mix closely related topics in a single blog. Remember, niche usually means a small section of a large topic. So a good example of a niche blog topic can be European football instead of a more generic topic Football. Or, it can be even daily lunch ideas instead of food.
Guest blogs are a little different from other blogs. The content of these blogs are written by guest writers. Why? because these guest writers are actually experts in their specific fields. Now, you may ask, why would somebody do guest blogging instead of writing his own blog? Well, that is a valid question. But to find the answer allow me to ask you another question.
Let’s consider that you created a new blog and not many people are not reading your blog as you still couldn’t rank well. But you are an expert in a specific area. Don’t you think that if you could get a platform where you can write and prove that you are really an expert in that field then it could solve your traffic problem partially? That’s the catch and that is exactly the reason why people do guest blogging.
Those are some of the common and popular types of blogs you just read. Now the interesting part comes. Other than those five types of blogs there are many other types. Like: Video Blogs. Instead of writing content some people likes to create videos and speak about their mind. Don’t you think that’s also a wonderful way to share thoughts? Yes, that actually is. Those video blogs are called vlogs and people who create and publish those vlogs are called vloggers. Well, that’s all for today. Thank you for reading.
Blog Topics & Blogging Ideas For Starting Your Blog
Before you start your own blog, you need some ideas. It is always better to write something that you are familiar with or have some experience. Let’s take a look at an example. Maybe you are a Doctor or IT professional or maybe you are a Social Media Manager at a company. So as a doctor you can always write on health tips as you see many people don’t understand the issues and many people also have some misconception on how to live a healthy life. Similarly, if you are a Social Media Manager then you can easily write on how to increase follower count, which social media are working better or how to make money with Pinterest.
I think you already have an idea. So, it’s relatively easy to write on topics you already know. Now, what if you want to write on any topic that you are not very familiar with? Then the possible route is to study as much as possible. So you can write on the topic as a learner, not as an expert. People will be happy to learn from a fellow learner who has more knowledge on the topic than them.
Now that you have an idea on how to choose your blogging topic, let us see some common topics so that you can select easily.
|1. Lifestyle||2. Health & Fitness|
|3. Make Money Online||4. Traveling|
|5. Language Learning||6. Working Mom Tips|
|7. DIY Tips||8. Myth Debunking|
|9. Crafting||10. Health Tips|
|11. Fooding||12. Recipies|
|13. Technology||14. Photography|
|15. Movies||16. Games|
|17. Programming||18. App Development|
|19. Accounting Tips||20. Blogging|
How To Start Your Blog & Make Money: 3 Easy Steps.
1. Plan Your Blog Ideas & Content:
As I said earlier, before everything you need to plan your topic. If you are not sure what you will write then how will you make a strategy for your content? So at first, take your time and plan what you want to write about. Now, if you have already decided on the topic then it’s time to do some keyword research. You can easily do that with google keyword research tool. It is free and will give you some solid content ideas which will make it a breeze to create your content strategy. After finishing your keyword research create an excellent content strategy. Now it’s hard to discuss how to make a good content strategy in this small blog. So please google for content strategy and I hope you will find some good tips for creating content strategy there.
Select A Good Domain & Hosting (Selecting Blogging Platform)
Now that you have planned your content strategy, it’s time to write your content & publish. Before you proceed any further, you should come up with a good domain name for your blog. Select a small and trendy domain name and buy a good hosting to host your blog. Don’t go for free domain & hosting packages as it will cause some issues later. So, it’s better to go with the paid option form the start. If you already have a good domain then you can even start with google cloud platform or Amazon AWS which will give you a year of free trial period. You can easily buy your domain form any good domain registrar like NameCheap or GoDaddy.
So, you got your domain and hosting, now what? Now, you have to decide which blogging platform to use. WordPress is a good option for new bloggers as well as experienced bloggers. There are still some other options available like Drupal, Google Blogger, Constant Contact, Medium, Squarespace, etc. Pick one and stick to it unless you have issues. Now write your content and publish according to your content strategy.
Promote Your Content & Select An Affiliate Program to Earn Money
Only writing and publishing would not give you enough visitors to earn money from your blog. You have to promote so that people can know about your blog. The best route for promoting your blog is social media channels, like, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube(video channel & you need to create videos too), Instagram, etc. Sharing your blog to social media and video channels will reduce the dependency on search engines. Though you have to do some search engine optimization as it will give you some free traffic.
Now that you have some steady flow of traffic its time to monetize your blog. As you don’t have your own product or service to sell, you can monetize your blog with Google AdSense or by affiliate programs like Amazon Affiliate program, CJ(Commission Junction), etc. Go on and create your account to those platforms and put your affiliate link on your blog. Remember, don’t make your blog look spammy.
Blogging Tips: Ten Blogging Tips For New Bloggers
Blogging tips are always useful for both new and experienced bloggers. Too many people start blogging out of enthusiasm but only a handful becomes expert. So, tips from experts help a lot to reduce mistakes and acts as guidance for fellow bloggers. Let’s straight get to the point now.
- Before anything else, write for yourself. Write for fun and write with enthusiasm.
- Understand your readers. Try to find the problem that drives them towards your blog. Now try to solve the problem.
- Always write with a content strategy and write for your readers. Not for search engines.
- Always look for quality instead of quantity.
- Try to write one long blog post instead of too many short blog posts.
- Never underestimate the power of analysis. Your data shows a lot about your visitor’s behavior. Value them and utilize them accordingly.
- Remember, patience is the key to success. You may not be getting many visitors at this moment but gradually you will. So, keep writing.
- Always keep some time for promoting your blog. Promote them as much as possible but don’t spam.
- Don’t try to earn from your blog at the beginning. Give it time to populate with visitors and then go for an advertisement.
- Above all, never give up.
I hope you enjoyed reading and if you have any further question, please let me know.