5 Blogging Tips I Wish I Knew Back Then

When I started blogging, wordpress was primitive, plugins were buggy, and there was no such thing as a 6 figure blogger. There really was no one classified as a “blogging guru” leaving me to learn from good old fashioned trial and error. Expensive, time-consuming, trial and error.

Here are just a few lessons I learned the hard way, and tips I wish I had known back when I started blogging…

1. Put readers needs and interests first. Most new bloggers take at least a year to truly understand how this works, even if they think they know. Constantly focusing on what your readers want will not only build your readership quickly, but also help all your blogging strategies fall into place more easily. For example, this results in well targeted advertisers and affiliate partnerships more likely to interest your readers.

2. Read other blogs, talk with other bloggers. You will learn far more about blogging through interaction than through reading, and at a much quicker pace. This is also great exposure for joint ventures, back scratching guest posts, and my favorite- blogging buddies that help keep you updated on recent news and changes in the blogosphere, even before you read them on Mashable.

3. Always test before implementing major changes. I once changed ad layouts across my entire site after reading a blogging tip that was “guaranteed to increase my earnings.” Big mistake. This cost me about $8,000 in a few short weeks, plus the time it took to reverse the changes and make friends with Google SERPS again. ALWAYS test first and implement changes slowly.

4. Avoid free blog hosting sites. These are great for casual bloggers with no MMO blogging intentions, but for the serious blogger who plans to take over the world in their blogging future… a shared hosting option is your best option, and ALWAYS have your own domain. The flexibility this offers will pay for the $5 monthly hosting fee many times over and save you the headache of having to move your freebielog later. Not convinced? Last year, a blogger came to me asking for advice. It seems they’d set up their blogger.com blog over a year before and had around a $3,000 monthly AdSense income from the site. Imagine his dismay when Google came along and shut his blog down. He had no domain of his own to turn the traffic, and no backup of alllllll that content he’d worked so diligently to build up. Which brings me to my next tip…

5. BACK UP YOUR BLOG. Oh yes, this is one every single blogger I’ve ever known has learned the hard way… so simple, you’d think we’d have figured it out right? Back up your content x 4. Back it up through wordpress and have it emailed to you using wp-backup plugin or any number of others. Test the files delivered periodically. Back up your databases from the server. Back up your theme. Back up your reader lists. This only takes a few minutes, and trust me when I say, there will be times when you need all of these!

There you go- my top 5 blogging tips I wish I knew back then… a few simple tactics that will potentially save you thousands of dollars and hours with minimal effort.

ps. hi from Australia.

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Jeni Hott
Professional blogger, entrepreneur, speaker, humanitarian.
My name is Jeni Hott. I'm a professional blogger and entrepreneur. You may have seen me speak, heard me on an interview, or know me from the movie Living Dot Com, where I was featured as the very first 7 figure blogger, and recognized for crossing 100 million visits back in 2013. I am honored to be considered a pioneer of the blogging world today, and one of the very first "Super Bloggers.” On a personal note... I love sushi, my son London and jet-setter travel… and I happily share my 7 figure blogging tips in exchange for frappuccinos and good conversation. Have a question? Feel free to ask- jhottinc(@) gmail. Happy Blogging!

63 Replies to “5 Blogging Tips I Wish I Knew Back Then”

  1. This is great Brilliant Jeni! Thank you so much for helping us this is amazing! I’ve had the chance to meet you and you are not only brilliant but an amazing individual that I respect and admire a lot!

  2. BAckup is very important as I have fallen foul to that before :(…. Also even if you have tested a change a backup before you make the live means switching back is a lot easier.

    Nice to see you posting again :).

  3. That is a good point, number 5. I learned the hard way on Blogger as well, and one of my blogs is pretty much stuck there for now. Which is fine as it earns some money regularly. But I have just assigned my assistant to back it up once a month, and added it to our Google Calendar. As it was not being done automatically.

    For my WordPress blogs, I use a Database Backup plugin to backup and email me the files weekly …

    1. Great that you’re so on top of things and kudos for monetizing a Blogger.com blog. That alone can be challenging. Mind sharing with everyone how you are backing that particular blog up?

    1. A blogger’s motto can almost be, “there’s a plugin for that!” these days…

      I use wp-backup – easy plugin that emails a backup of your posts at specified time increments. Like Anna wrote above, I have this emailed once a week. It goes to a free email account on gmail so it doesn’t clutter my email box but is there when I need it. I also prefer to have backups from various time periods- for example, if I want a backup from a month ago before I made drastic changes, etc, it’s there waiting for me in my gmail time capsul.

      Buy yourself something cool with that L20 😉

  4. Such great advice! Along with knowing your readers, definitely need to know your niche & industry & use that to meet your readers needs. Ty for this one- brilliant!

    Re:

    thanks this is a great post, this is also needed
    Take a quick tour: you need to take a tour to other blogs of the same niche (field) and see what they are writing about and see some of their basic blog features, remember that you are not the only one blogging or the first to blog people are already there before you and you need to do what they are doing and even better. You need to remove every doubt of failing because you will see great blogs and you will be amazed at what they are doing , Rome was not built in a day!

    1. ouch! hard lesson to learn isn’t it? I’ve known bloggers who hadn’t backed up in over 6 months who lost all that content. One lucked out though- their host had a backup for them.

      I should mention to that some people may have a back up and not know it. If wordpress gets corrupted, the database is still available on the server, content in tact.

  5. I too agree with you, I think it is really important for bloggers to consider readers interest first than to go on writing anything out of the blue. Some great tips that you have mentioned.

    1. Thank you Alex.

      You know, I find it hard even now, to balance between providing interesting content with seo tactics. Particularly with my keyword strategy… (google: brilliantjeni and big bang theory)

  6. Hello Jeni,

    I am glad you shared your mistakes for others to learn from. And the one on backup is something I am sure alot of people take for granted including myself.

    If all bloggers will share their personal mistakes like you have done, it will save beginners alot of time. I saw the need for this which is why I created a page on my website where probloggers share their stories behind “Had I known” in their blogging journey. I know it will be a great resource for beginners. Your topic relates so well with it and I usually don’t do this but I’ll add a link here http://www.blogging-the-beginners-complete-guide.com/problogger.html so people can share their stories with others.

    Thanks Jeni, you’re a woman of quality. You don’t post regularly but when you do, you make sure you deliver.

    1. Thank you so much or the compliment Karo. Since we’ve spoken outside of this site, this means a lot coming from someone who knows me.

      I’m taking a bit of a different route with the site- I’ll be adding more static tutorials and providing mentoring along the way. In the meantime, I’ve added you to RBT chat on skype. I think you’ll find that beneficial.

      If anyone else would like to join, shoot me an email- brilliantjeni @ gmail

  7. Better plan first what will be the content of your blog post that readers will be interested to read it and visit again your site for they find it very useful to them. Thanks for the valuable informations you posted.

  8. After nearly killing my blog yesterday, you’d think I’d be intelligent enough to take a backup today? No such luck… I’ll add it to the list…

    One blogging tip I wish I knew back then: comments & hits aren’t the measure of success – I used to be sad if something I wrote didn’t get comments/much traffic. Now I check the average time on page/bounce rate for my blogs as a measure instead. If the average time on page is just 5 seconds, you know that nobody is reading and that you need to make your post more engaging.

  9. Those are some brilliant tips Jeni, I too have done a lot of mistakes in my blog when I first started…looking back right now, I do repent on not doing things then..the right way but well everything is a lesson in life..Isn’t it

  10. Those are some really great pointers. It’s really important to be in touch with your readers and give them what they want. They will return your attention and be loyal to you. Also, backing up data is an ever-important rule for everyone. We often tend to forget it but it’s a fact of the blogging life.

  11. I think, reading other blogs and interacting with other is indeed a great way to improve community and build one community around your blog. Thanks for Nice and definitive tips. 🙂

  12. Great information, especially the tips about backing up your blog and writing to the needs and interests of your readers. When you help others, it will all come back around to you. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Jeni,

    These are some great tips. I have learnt most of what I know from my blogging “buddies”. I wasted a lot of time searching several sites that didn’t give me the info I really needed. Once I made some blogging friends they helped me out a lot 🙂 Backing up my blog is not something I would have thought of (as silly as that sounds) but you have me thinking about it now. Thanks 🙂

  14. Ugh…#4 sounds pretty miserable. I know quite a few affiliate marketers/bloggers in the Philippines who can’t afford to start off with their own domain/hosting, but once they’ve made a little bit of money, we highly suggest forking over the cash. It’s so much better to own your real estate online rather than renting!

  15. Yes! Back everything up all of the time! Fatastic tip and great wisdom! A guy I know does the computers in a school setting. He will repeatedly tell the teachers to backup their work and they don’t. When Murphy (of Murphy’s Law) hits, the teachers are out of their lessons and he may not always be able to restore all files completely.

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    Ery

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