Happy 1st Birthday To My Website
Phew What A Year!
Where has the year gone? It's been one year today since I published the first post on my website and it seems like yesterday.
I don't blog much here, however I hope newer members will get some useful takeaways from this birthday blog.
In terms of making money, I'm nowhere near where I want to be, a very small trickle of money has just started. However, during this huge learning curve first year, I've built a solid base for a business and feel like I've achieved so much.
I'm No Spring Chicken
I'm not exactly 'young' and I wasn't exactly completely IT illiterate when I started here at WA, but my knowledge was very limited (it's still not great). I had avoided using any social media whatsoever before joining WA, therefore had absolutely no knowledge of how it all works.
Despite these handicaps, by following the training here step by step, applying the learnings, and asking for help from the great WA community when needed, I've managed to do the following:
- I've learned how to build my first website using Wordpress.
- I'm active on Pinterest (1,000 followers) and Facebook (85 followers).
- I just completed my first guest interview for a blogger in my niche who contacted me with the request.
- I've learned about affiliate marketing and SEO.
- I understand and use Google Analytics.
- I had an audit of my site carried out by a marketing/SEO 'expert' and realized my website is for the most part OK. It's not perfect, but I haven't made any huge mistakes either.
When I wrote my first 1000 word post, I struggled and honestly thought I'd never be able to write 10 posts. I'd read member's blogs where they say they had written 100 posts and thought 'Crikey, I'll never be able to write that number of posts'.
However, I now have 95 posts on my site and the majority are long posts of approximately 2400 + words, some over 3000 words. I realized I need long posts to compete with keywords in my niche.
The more you write, the easier it gets. For newbies, some tricks I've used during this first year to make writing easier are :
- Make a list of about 20 posts ideas so you are all ready to just write.
- Do Keyword research and have a list of long tail keywords all ready to go for the posts.
- Commit to publishing a set number of posts weekly.
- Try to write some draft posts and schedule them ahead of time according to your publishing schedule. Having posts all ready in your queue takes the pressure off and you don't have to sit and write on days you might not feel like it, or on days when you need to do social media/marketing stuff. I've found doing this of great benefit as I found I was putting a lot of pressure on myself to keep to my publishing schedule. Of course you need to do some additional work to build up your initial 'bank' of drafts.
I find just these three things make writing SO much easier. I'm a designer in my offline life and was always taught that you need a starting point. You can't sit and stare at a blank sheet of paper waiting for design inspiration to strike. I use the same mentality here, you can't sit and stare at a blank computer screen, make sure you spend time just thinking and researching to give yourself a starting point and the writing part will flow more easily.
What's Next As I Go Into My 2nd Year?
I always seem to have a 'to do' list that never gets completely ticked off as new stuff gets added to it. This coming year I plan to keep writing at the same pace, particularly adding more money posts to the solid base I have in place. I'm in the process of setting up an email opt in. I want to be more active on social media, do more outreach campaigns and start a 2nd website (if I can just think of another niche.....mmmh).
I've learned that depending on the niche you choose, it can take longer than you think it will to start seeing a financial reward for all your hard work. However, it's important to be mindful of what is working and look for the signs of success along the way. For example, right now my organic traffic is just starting an upward trend and I'm seeing more of my posts reach Google Page 1 which is encouraging.
I try to celebrate each small success along the way to building out my site authority.......and most importantly never give up!