Why I’m a terrible travel blogger – plus a few tips on how YOU can be a better travel blogger!
I was reading a travel blog today that is a pretty good travel blog, but the author seems to think they’re not (Why I’m probably the worst travel blogger ever (+10 tips for getting better)). I thought I’d take their reasons (and tips) and do my own kind of thing with it. Because if they thought they were a terrible travel blogger, then I must really suck!
And, as I talk about these things – and ask you some questions about them too – you might find something worthwhile to consider with your own blog.
Publish a new blog post as often as possible
…at least twice a week or, even better, on a daily basis.
Ok, I do this. But not just as a travel blogger. I’m often doing posts about various ‘stream of consciousness’ topics that are on my mind, and that I feel passionate enough to share. Sometimes I’ll do a few posts a day, other times I’ll go for a few days without posting. For me, it’s been more important to post when I feel I have something to say, rather than because someone else thinks I should post more frequently. But I do know that posting more frequently, particularly about the topics I want to focus on, is a good way of inviting and holding on to more guests. Do you think I should post more frequently?
Give your posts a personal touch
…show you’re a real person so your readers can identify with you…
I think I do this, particularly with the topics that talk about the challenges I’ve had in the past, or in the present. The theme of my blog is, after all, all about my journey in life. Including travel. But not just travel. It’s about me, about my personal feelings and experiences on my journey, so I try to share that. What do you think I’m missing?
Learn SEO and do keyword research
…and check your Klout Score, your Page Rank and Google Analytics!
Now this is something I’ve never been interested in, and never fully explored. I’ve not been one to aim my posts at simply improving search results, preferring to just write what’s on my mind. But maybe I should start to? It’s likely that if I work on improving my SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) that I’ll get more people coming here, and more interested about what I’m saying. What keywords or topics would you find interesting enough to leave a comment about?
Choose WordPress as your platform
…because all serious travel bloggers are using WordPress!
While the author of the other blog disagrees with this, I’m inclined to agree. I’ve experimented with other platforms and tools, and I’ve always come back to WordPress. It’s just so much better in terms of customisation and theme control. You can pretty much do what you want with it, and have it set up exactly the way you want. There’s all kinds of plugins and widgets that allow you to anything you could possibly imagine, plus a whole lot more! (Oh, and if you want me to help you with setting up or helping you with your WordPress blog, I provide those services.) Do you have any suggestions for a better blogging platform?
Comment on other blog posts (like crazy!)
…so other people and travel bloggers will notice you…
Again, this is true, but… As the other author agrees, finding the time to do this can often be an extremely difficult thing to do. With engaging in the activities of your life, as well as writing posts or replying to comments on your own blog, who has the time to go visit so many other blogs and comment on them too? I’ve always felt that the people who do that are the people whose existence revolves around their blog. They might be stay-at-home mothers or fathers, or people who aren’t working and have very little else to do with their time. Good for them! But also good for you if you can find the time to do this around your own busy life.
Write guest posts for other blogs
…get more readers, more traffic and a bigger audience!
This is also true. I’ve considered it in the past, and I might consider it again in the future. However, I’ve not really found any other blogs that I’d like to guest post on. There was one blog, but after an initial conversation with the author, I ended up doing nothing with it. I just couldn’t find something I wanted to write that was directly related to his specific blog theme, so I didn’t bother. It can be difficult, but if you can find a blog or blogs that will let you guest post and you can find something worthwhile to write about for them, then go for it. I hear it’s a great way of bringing visitors to your own blog. Would you like me to guest post on your blog? Or maybe you’d like to guest post on this blog?
Monetise your blog
…become your own boss and never get back to a boring 9-5 job job!
This would be great, but only if your blog is really, super duper popular! If you’ve only got a few dozen people a day finding your blog, there’s no point putting advertising up for them to click on. You might only earn yourself a few cents a day, which isn’t going to help you become your own boss. I know that it’s my intention to one day have advertising on this blog, but I want at least 500 people a day visiting first. I’ve got a fair way to go before that happens! What do you think about monetising? Do you do it? Are you against it?
Choose a short and easy URL
Done. Alansjourney.com is easy to remember! This is definitely important, so that people can easily remember your blog’s internet address, and come back to it later. Help your visitors want to come back by making it easy for them. What’s your blog’s URL? Share it with us, you can get more visitors!
Pay for a professional design
…because beautiful Design is beau… ti… ful
I’ve spent many hours scouring the internet for excellent blog themes. I’ve been happy to pay for a professional design in the past, but what I’m using now is actually free. You just need to find something that works for you, and not be afraid to pay for it. It’s got to look great, and allow the functionality that you desire on your blog. People love pretty things, and if your blog appeals to their ‘pretty’ scale, they’re more likely to come back and enjoy staying. Is there anything you think can be improved about my blog? What do you think is missing?
…and have profiles on Facebook, Twitter, Google plus, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Reddit…
Yep, I do that. You can share posts with your friends via the buttons on the left, and I’ve got socially integrated commenting with each blog post, so that you can login with your favourite social media logins (eg. Twitter, Facebook, etc). I think that being social is important. People like to talk and discuss things, and if you allow that on your blog, you’ll make them happy. Some blogs prevent people from commenting. They avoid being social. Then they just become a broadcaster who doesn’t want to hear from other people. I don’t like those blogs. I like to hear from other people, and I love encouraging conversation! What do you think about this? Do you do share socially?
I don’t consider myself a proper travel blogger, but I do want to be. The reason I’m blogging is because I love writing, and I also love travelling, and I love sharing my opinions and my experiences with you.
I’ve pointed out above how I can improve my blogging, but maybe you can add some tips of your own in the comments below? Or you could tell me what you’d like to see on here that would be more in line with your expectations about travel blogging?
Thanks for reading! Please add your own thoughts below.
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