Blog For Fun
Blogging is becoming an increasingly popular way for entrepreneurs to earn a living online while doing something they really enjoy. In many cases.
Blogging for Profit
Blogging is becoming an increasingly popular way for entrepreneurs to earn a living online while doing something they really enjoy. In many cases bloggers can profit with very little effort. There may be quite a bit of work involved in the beginning with designing a method of gaining revenue and promoting the website but once this is established simply maintaining the blog with regular postings may be enough to keep the revenue rolling in. Two of the most popular methods for generating a profit from blogging include advertising methods. This includes advertising with AdSense and securing independent advertisers. This article will discuss these two methods of advertising on a blog.
Using AdSense to Generate Revenue
Using AdSense is one of the most popular ways for bloggers to generate revenue from their blog. This method is so popular because it is also very simple. AdSense is a program offered by Google where bloggers agree to have advertisements on their website and are compensated when users click on these advertisements. Bloggers simply have to create a blog and submit the website address of the blog as well as some other information to apply for participation in AdSense. Once a blog is approved the owner is given code they can simply copy and paste to have advertisements displayed on their blog. Google then serves appropriate advertisements each time the blog is accessed. Whenever possible, the advertisements served on the blog are closely related to the content of the blog because Google crawls the website ahead of time to determine which advertisements are relevant to the content. Blog owners do have some ability to place restrictions on the types of advertisements which may appear on the blog. For example the blog owner can specify adult advertisements are not to appear on the blog and Google will filter these out.
How Advertisements on a Blog Generate Revenue
Many bloggers use advertisements on their blogs to generate a profit. This method of advertising is more difficult than using AdSense but it can be significantly more financially beneficial to the blogger. This method of advertising is similar to the type of targeted advertising often seen in magazines. For example magazines for parents often feature advertisements which will appeal to parents such as advertisements for toys, childrens clothing or foods popular with children. Likewise a magazine for runners may feature advertisements for shoes, athletic clothing, races or training equipment. In these cases the advertisers pay for advertising space in the magazine in the hopes that the magazins audience will be enticed to purchase products or services after seeing these advertisements.
Blog owners can use this type of advertising but it can be hard to find willing advertisers. However, there are some factors which may make an advertiser more willing to have an advertisement appear on a blog. One of the most important factors for advertisers is the amount of traffic the blog receives. This is important because advertisers who are paying for ad space are more likely to invest in a blog with high traffic than one with very little traffic.
Another important factor for advertisers is the focus of the blog. Advertisers are more likely to purchase advertising space from a blog with a specific focus of interest to the advertisers target audience. Like the examples listed previously of magazines for parents and runners, advertisers want to advertise on a blog which is already reaching the same target audience.
Bloggers who utilize advertising on their website may be compensated in a number of different ways. Some advertisers may pay a set fee for the advertisement to run on the website for either a set amount of time or for a set number of page views. This means the advertiser may purchase space for a set number of days, weeks or months or may purchase space for a set number of times the advertisement is served to website visitors.
Alternately the advertiser may choose to compensate the blogger according to the number of times specific actions occur. This may include users clicking through the advertisement or users making a purchase after clicking through the advertisement. The type of compensation offered will have to be worked out between the blogger and advertiser beforehand to determine a fair method of payment.
Blogging with Wordpress
Wordpress is one of the many options available to bloggers who are looking for free software online which makes it incredibly easy to publish their own blog. This software is easy to use, provides a variety of templates and offer excellent support to bloggers. There are many options available to bloggers and other blogging programs may be better known and offer slightly different features but many bloggers are quite pleased with Wordpress. This article will offer some useful information for bloggers who are considering starting a blog with Wordpress such as reasons to choose Wordpress, tips on starting a blog and information about the support offered by Wordpress. Based on this information as well as their own research bloggers can decide whether Wordpress is right for them or whether they should seek out a different blog network.
Reasons to Choose Wordpress
There are many great reasons to choose Wordpress to start a blog. Some of these reasons include a great variety of templates, the ability to categorize and tag posts easily, features such as spell check, previews and autosave, the ability to post text, audio files and video files, a variety of privacy options and the ability to track statistical data related to the blog in addition to other great features. Some of these features may be more important to some bloggers than others so deciding whether or not Wordpress is right for you will largely be a matter of personal preference. For example bloggers with little or no programming experience may enjoy the myriad of templates available on Wordpress while bloggers who are concerned about privacy issues may be more interested in the privacy options available through Wordpress. Carefully investigating these features will help bloggers determine if they should start a blog with Wordpress.
Starting a Blog with Wordpress
Bloggers who opt to start a blog with Wordpress will certainly not be disappointed by the amount of time it takes to start a blog. A blogger can literally start a blog with Wordpress within minutes. This is tremendously important to bloggers who are eager to get started and do not want to deal with a long process to start a blog. The only requirements for starting a blog are a valid email address and a username. The blogger enters this information into the signup page and receives a password almost instantly. Next the blogger simply has to check his email, follow the activation link provided and use the password provided and the process is complete. The blogger can start blogging immediately.
Support Offered by Wordpress
For many first time bloggers the type of support offered is very important. This is because first time bloggers may have quite a few questions about the process of starting a basic blog and once they establish a basic blog they may have additional questions about using advanced features and customizing the blog. Wordpress offers a great deal of support for bloggers of all skill levels. The support offered by Wordpress includes the ability to contact the support staff as well as the ability to receive support from other members through online forums. Although the support staff is incredibly responsive some bloggers enjoy the ability to communicate with other bloggers in forums. This is because the forums are active 24 hours a day and bloggers can find support from peers at any time.
Careers in Blogging
Many freelance writers are beginning to find blogging is one of the newest career opportunities available to them. Blogging is essentially a series of postings on a particular subject which are listed in reverse chronological order. These blogs may be about a variety of different subjects and may be personal, political, informative, humorous or any other category desired by the blogger. However, the key to a successful blog is a blog which pertains to a subject which appeals to a wide audience. Additionally the blog should be updated regularly and should provide useful content to the readers of the blog. This article will provide some information on finding career opportunities in blogging, will discuss the benefits of this type of career and will provide information on how writers can manage a blog successfully.
Finding Blogging Career Opportunities
Although blogging career opportunities are becoming increasingly popular, many writers are not aware of how to find these wonderful opportunities. These career opportunities may be offered as ghost writing positions or as positions offering a byline to the writer and finding these blogging opportunities is often very similar to finding any other career opportunities for writers. Companies seeking a blogger may post the job opening in the same manner in which they would post other openings with the company such as accounting positions or administrative positions. Therefore, writers interested in a position as a blogger should utilize the same job search websites they rely on to find other career opportunities.
Bloggers may also wish to visit career websites and message boards which focus exclusively on careers in blogging. The ProBlogger.net website is just one example of a website dedicated exclusively to putting bloggers in connection with those who are interested in hiring a writer for a particular blog. Interested bloggers should also consider joining message boards for those who blog for a living. This can be beneficial because here bloggers are likely to share information regarding the companies for which they work as well as any information they have about companies who are currently looking to hire bloggers.
The Benefits of a Career in Blogging
There are many benefits to pursuing a career in blogging. Perhaps one of the most alluring benefits to a career in blogging is the work can typically be done as a telecommute position. This is because as long as the blogger has access to the software necessary to write and upload a blog, there is no need for the blogger to perform the work from a specific location. This means the blogger can reside virtually anywhere in the world and can likely perform the necessary work from his own home. However, not all blogging positions are telecommute positions. Some companies may require bloggers to perform the work onsite as a matter of personal preference.
Another benefit to a career in blogging is the ability to accomplish work at a pace which his convenient to the blogger. The blogger may be required to upload a new post to the blog according to a regular schedule but the actually writing of the posts can be accomplished when it is convenient for the blogger. Many blogging software packages enable the blogger to set a specific time for a specific post to be uploaded. This allows the blogger to write several posts at a time and have them publish according to a pre-determined schedule.
Finding Time to Blog
One of the problems which many bloggers face is finding the time to blog. This is especially difficult if the blogger maintains several blogs or if the blogger maintains a current events blog in which posts must be timely in order to be relevant and of interest to the readers. Writing blog posts in batches and scheduling them to publish as needed is one way to deal with managing several blogs. However, writers of blogs related to current events must take special care to budget their time wisely to ensure they are publishing topical blog posts. One way this can be accomplished is by setting aside time daily to reading current events to derive inspiration and then scheduling time after that to write and publish the blog. For example a blogger with a current events blog might choose to review the previous days news the first thing in the morning to ensure they are reviewing all of the relevant news from the previous day before writing the blog post.
Dealing with Comments on Your Blog
Most blogs allow visitors to the blog to post comments on any of the blog posts. These comments may pertain to the blog posting or may be completely unrelated. The comments may also be positive or negative in nature. Regardless of the type of comment left by a visitor the blogger may choose to deal with these comments in a number of different ways. The blogger may answer these comments, block individual visitors from leaving comments in the future or use administrative features to delete comments or set the blog to require approval of the comments before they are posted on the blog. This article will discuss each of these options for dealing with comments on a blog in greater detail.
Answering Comments on Your Blog
Bloggers who receive comments on their blog may wish to answer these comments. Most blogging programs allow the blogger to post comments on his own blog which enables the blogger to answer comments directly. With this feature a blogger can deal with a number of different situations including negative comments, positive comments and questions. Bloggers who receive negative comments on their blog may opt to answer these comments directly with a rebuttal to the negative comments. This allows the blogger to recognize the criticism and defend his original post. Bloggers who receive positive comments may also wish to answer these comments to thank the visitors for the praise. Still other bloggers may receive comments which ask a question about the blog post or the blogger himself. Bloggers may opt to answer these questions to develop a better relationship with the blog visitors.
Blocking Comments from Individual Visitors
Another option for dealing with blog comments which are negative in nature is to block comments from individual blog visitors. In most cases bloggers will have the ability to blog a particular user from leaving comments on the blog. The blogger may wish to use this option in situations where the comments from the blog visitor are extremely mean spirited. The blogger may also wish to ban individual blog visitors from making comments if he has previously attempted to explain his point to the visitor but the visitor continues to post negative comments. A blogger may also wish to ban an individual blog visitor from making comments if he believes the comments are being left as spam.
Using Administrative Features
Still another option for dealing with comments on a blog includes using administrative features to delete comments or modify the settings to not allow comments to be displayed until the blogger approves them. Blog owners typically have the ability to delete a comment left by a blog visitor. Deleting these comments is usually a quite simple process. However, it is not a completely effective method because other blog visitors may have the opportunity to read these comments before they are deleted. Therefore, deleting the comment may prevent some visitors from reading the comment but will not ensure the comment is not seen by any blog visitors. However, there is a way for bloggers to make sure visitors do not read negative comments. Most types of blogging software have options which require the blogger to approve all comments before they become available to the public. This gives the blogger the ability to delete a comment before it is read by any of the blog visitors. The blogger can simply delete any comments they do not wish others to read before the comments are published.
Design Elements of a Blog
A blog may be essentially an online journal displayed in reverse chronological order but it is also a website which requires the same attention to detail any other website requires. It also requires the same design elements as a regular website which does not also function as a blog. Bloggers have decisions to make regarding design elements of the blog such as colors and layout, fonts and the inclusion of advertisements. Although many blog software programs provide a variety of templates which make designing a blog rather simple, blogs can also be highly customized by bloggers who possess some programming skills. This article will discuss some of the basic design considerations bloggers encounter.
Colors and Layouts of a Blog
The colors and layout of a blog is one of the most obvious design considerations bloggers must consider when starting or re-designing their blog. Bloggers may use a solid color background, blocks of different colors in the background or pictures or textures in the background. These background elements can be any color imaginable. However, bloggers who are considering the colors to use in their blog should consider using colors which will be aesthetically appealing to most blog visitors. This is important because the use of garish colors which are harsh on the eye can result in diminished blog traffic.
The layout of the blog should also carefully be considered by the blogger. The blog should be arranged in a fashion which is appealing to blog visitors, suits the subject of the blog and is presented in a logical manner which is easy for visitors to follow. Again, this is important because failure to use a layout which meets these criteria may result in blog visitors choosing not to visit the blog anymore because the layout is confusing or unappealing.
Fonts Used in a Blog
Bloggers have a number of options available to them when selecting fonts to use in their blog. These options include the font chosen, the text size and the color of the text. Bloggers should consider choosing a font which works well with the overall design of the layout of the blog and suits the subject matter of the blog but also is a font which common. This is important because blog visitors may have trouble viewing the font if the blogger selects a unique font which is not common. The text size and colors of the text should also be carefully considered. These elements are primarily important for readability. Text size should be set so members of the target audience can easily read the text. For example a blogger with senior citizens as the target audience may opt to use a text size slightly larger than usual. The colors used for the text should also be selected to enhance readability. One way to do this is to select colors which are appealing to the eye but also contrast with the background color.
Inclusion of Advertisements in a Blog
Bloggers must also consider the inclusion of advertisements when they are designing their blogs. This includes determining whether or not to include blogs. Once this decision is made, bloggers who opt to include advertisements must carefully consider how and where they wish to display these advertisements. Advertisements can be displayed in various locations throughout the blog and can be designed to be discrete or obvious depending on the preferences of the blogger. Advertisements can also be a variety of sizes and shapes and are highly customizable in a number of different ways.
Finding Blogs to Read
There is a wide variety of blogs currently available. Internet users are fortunate to have a large number of blogs to choose from when seeking a blog to read regularly. There are also often many blogs available which cover a particular subject. Blogs can be about any subject imaginable. Some blogs are created to entertain while others are created to inform. Some blogs are created to generate a profit while other blogs are created to help others. With so many blogs currently available online it can be difficult to determine which blogs are worth reading and which are not. It can also make it difficult to limit the number of blogs the Internet user reads. This article will provide information on finding and selecting blogs to read including using search engines to find blogs, finding blogs through participation in message boards and seeking recommendations for blogs from friends or family members.
Using Search Engines to Find Blogs
Search engines are one of the most reliable resources Internet users often rely on to find useful websites. However, it is important to note search engines can also be extremely helpful for Internet users who are interested in finding blogs to read. An Internet user who is looking for a blog on a particular subject can start the process of finding these blogs by entering relevant keywords or phrases into a popular search engine and carefully reviewing the results provided for this search. However, this type of search will not necessarily provide the Internet users with blogs. In fact the search results may not include a blog on any of the first few pages in the search results despite returning pages upon pages of links to useful websites.
One simple way the Internet user can use search engines to find blogs relating to a particular subject is to include the word blog with the keywords or phrases entered into the search engine. This will help to filter the search results and may push blogs towards the front of search results. However, Internet users are better off searching for collections of blogs and then searching within these collections for ones of interest.
Finding Blogs on Message Boards
Many Internet users rely on message boards to find interesting and informative blogs. This is because many message board participants who have a blog often find ways to make others aware of this blog. This may either be through the process of incorporating a link to the blog in the message board users signature or, when appropriate, supplying the link to the blog directly in the message body of a post on the message board. Although many bloggers may take advantage of the opportunity to promote their own blog through message boards, those who are interested in finding new blogs will likely not have time to review all of these blogs. Therefore, it is wise for these Internet users to be somewhat discriminating about the blogs they choose to visit. One way to do this is to only visit blogs of regular forum posters who offer valuable information to the conversations on the message board. The Internet user may also wish to avoid blogs which appear to be posted as spam. This is important because these blogs are not only likely poor quality but also visiting these blogs only encourages the blog owner to continue to spam message boards with his link.
Seeking Recommendations for Blogs
Finally, Internet users who are seeking blogs to read on a regular basis can consider seeking recommendations from friends or family members who share a particular interest. Friends or family members who are interested in the same subject as you may already regularly read blogs relevant to this interest. Asking them for recommendations is worthwhile because they have no reason to do anything but recommend blogs they really enjoy and assume you will be interested in as well. Also, this method of finding blogs is ideal because your friends and family members likely know your tastes and expectations well and will likely steer you in the right direction.
Finding Your Blogging Niche
Finding your blogging niche should be one of the aspects of blogging which the blogger carefully considers before starting a blog. This is especially important if the blogging is being done for the purpose of financial compensation. Ideally a blog owner should select a blog subject about which they are passionate and knowledgeable. However, bloggers should also carefully consider the direct competition as well as the purpose of the blog before starting their blog. This article will discuss these considerations in greater detail in an attempt to assists bloggers in choosing a subject for a new blog. This information is applicable to both bloggers who are completely new to blogging as well as experienced bloggers who are considering starting a new blog.
Isolating Your Interests
One of the first considerations for a new blogger is his personal interests. This is important because a blogger who is passionate and knowledgeable about a particular subject will not only have an easy time coming up with ideas for new blog posts but will also likely be highly successful. This success will likely be attributable to the fact that blog visitors can sense his passion for the subject matter and greatly appreciate the knowledgeable posts which are informative and accurate.
The interests of the blogger may run the gamut from subjects which are widely popular to subjects which are of interest to only a small subset of the population. However, there will likely be interested readers regardless of the subject of the blog. Therefore bloggers are not discouraged from opting to blog about even the most obscure subjects. However, bloggers who are seeking financial gain through high blog traffic should consider selecting a topic which appeals to a larger audience.
Evaluating the Competition
Once a blogger has selected one or more subjects he is considering for a blog, it is time to begin evaluating the competition. This includes viewing other blogs covering the same subject matter. This will not only give the blogger a good indication of whether or not the market is already saturated with blogs on this subject and the quality of the existing blogs on this subject. Based on this information the blogger can make an informed decision about whether or not he feels capable of competing for blog traffic with the existing blogs.
Considering the Purpose of the Blog
Another important consideration for bloggers is the purpose of the blogs. Blogs can be created for a variety of reasons including financial compensation, personal use or to promote a cause. Bloggers who are starting a blog for personal use may only wish to consider their own interests when starting a blog because they are not likely seeking high blog traffic. However, bloggers who are creating a blog for purposes of generating a profit or promoting a cause do have to consider factors such as the ability to generate blog traffic. In these cases the blogger should choose a subject which appeals to a large audience. Additionally, the Internet should not already be saturated with blogs on this subject because it will likely be difficult for the new blog to garner a share of blog traffic. Finally, blog owners should consider the quality of the blog they are capable of creating on a particular subject. The blogger should choose a subject where he is confident he can not only make regular posts but also ensure these posts are original, informative and interesting.
Improving the Search Engine Rankings of Your Blog
Bloggers who are interested in reaching a large audience with their blog should consider paying special attention to search engine optimization of their blog. Reaching a large audience may be a priority for a number of different reasons. One of the obvious reasons to attempt to generate increased traffic to a blog is to generate a profit. Bloggers who rely on high blog traffic for their revenue are obviously interested in increasing traffic. However, bloggers who create their blog to promote a cause may also be interested in increasing traffic simply to allow their message to reach a larger audience. Regardless of the reason to want to increase traffic, one of the best ways to do this is by optimizing the blog for search engines. This article will discuss the importance of search engine rankings and offer tips for optimizing a blog.
Why Search Engine Rankings are Important
The importance of high search engine rankings is they can contribute to increased Internet traffic to the blog. This is because Internet users who use search engines to find information on a particular topic are much more likely to visit websites which appear on the first page of the search results than they are to visit websites which appear on subsequent pages of the search results. The websites appearing on the first page of the results are likely to get the most traffic. However, Internet users are not likely to search through more than a page or two of the search results when looking for more information on a particular subject.
High search engine rankings essentially act as free advertisement for a blog or website. This is because many website users rely on popular search engines to assist them in finding useful information on the Internet. The search engines apply complex algorithms to evaluate websites and rank them accordingly for specific search terms. As a result Internet users put a great deal of value on the search results produced and trust these results to lead them to the best available websites relevant to the keywords they specified in the search.
Tips for Optimizing a Blog for Search Engines
One of the most common ways to optimize a blog or website for search engines is through the use of relevant keywords. Specifically the practice of applying specific keyword densities to the content of the blog is a common search engine optimization tactic employed. Blog owners and others who attempt to optimize their websites do not always agree on the optimal density for keywords but many believe a percentage of approximately 2%-3% is appropriate.
Another method for optimizing a search engine optimization is to place relevant keywords into the code of the website. This includes the title tags and META tags. This is important because search engines often consider the prominence of keywords when evaluating a website. This refers to the location in which the keywords first appear. Placing keywords early in the content of the website is helpful but it is important to note the search engines view the code first so keywords appearing before the body of the blog will be crawled first by the search engines.
Blog owners can also help to increase their search engine rankings by generating back links to their blog. This can be accomplished in a number of different ways. One way to do this is to find other websites willing to place a link to the blog on their website. This is beneficial because many search engines factor the number of links to a website into their ranking algorithm because these links are considered to be one website vouching for the validity of another website. Some website owners may be willing to do this in return for a link to their website on your blog. This is known as reciprocal linking and some search engines may not value this link as highly as a link which is not reciprocated. There are also some link exchange programs but these links may not be beneficial because many search engines consider the rank of the website linking to your blog. Therefore, if the website linking to your blog does not rank well, the back link will not improve search engine rankings significantly.