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5 things I learned from my first month blogging

5 things I learned from my first month blogging

Today I realized that I have officially been a part of the blogosphere for one whole month. So I thought I would reflect on why I started doing this and what I have learned in the process.

Why I started…….

A month ago I decided to start this blog because I realized I didn’t really have anything that I was doing that was just for me.  This is something that happens to most moms whether you stay at home or are working.  You get so wrapped up in taking care of your family, home, work, etc. and just kind of lose yourself in it (not saying it’s bad). This year I turn the big 3-0 and for some reason or another that motivated me to want to make a change.  I also noticed that I haven’t been very social and rarely ever have time to see friends.  Which caused me to wonder if I could fix both of these things by starting my own blog (just for fun).    Upon giving it some thought I decided to take on the adventure and planned to mostly share recipes and ideas for crafts so that people could see how really simple it can be with a little patience.

It’s now a month later and here are the 5 biggest things I have learned……..

1.Self Hosting & WordPress– After doing some research I decided that I wanted to self-host and have my very own domain name.  Of course I read extensively about what self-host sites people were recommending and the pros and cons.  Eventually I decided to go with InMotion Hosting, a site that offers many helpful features and was within my budget ($100 for a year).  Once I chose the hosting site it was then on to looking into website design where I stumbled upon WordPress.  I have been very happy with both of these choices!  WordPress makes it pretty easy to figure things out as a newbie and includes tons of free website themes and plugins.  I think the hardest part of the whole process is determining your domain name and what kind of theme you want to use.  I feel like I am constantly looking at and changing my theme (just changed it last night) to find exactly what I am looking for.

 

2.Plugins/Widgets– When it comes to these I am still a huge newbie as I had never really heard of these things until a month ago.  At first I tried to figure it all out on my own without the help of the internet but eventually caved when I saw how much better other people’s blogs and sidebars looked.  My awesome #TribalChat sister, @YouBabyMeMummy  posted a lovely article on her blog about the 20 WordPress Plugins You Need.  I’ve learned that you need things like SEO plugins so that your posts are more searchable, share buttons so others can share your posts on social media easier, and a place where people can subscribe to your new posts.

 

3.Social Media– For most of my adult life I really only used Facebook and Pinterest in terms of social media but quickly learned that if you want to get more readers putting yourself out there is a must.  After a couple of days of starting I created my own profile on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Google+.  In the last month I have recognized that Pinterest and Twitter seem to be what help drive traffic to my blog the most.  My favorite has been Twitter, which is where I have met a wonderful group of bloggers who are very supportive and helpful.  It all started with @Mummyinatutu who was looking for a community to join when she first started blogging.  We call ourselves #TribalChat and meet every Tuesday for an hour to get to know each other better.  We also chat throughout the week and read and comment on each other’s posts pretty regularly.  Most of what I’ve learned is from these ladies!

MummyinaTutu #Tribal chat

 

4.Linky Parties– I’ll admit the first time I heard the term #linky or #linkyparty I wasn’t really sure what to think and was probably a little concerned. However, if I hadn’t started joining these I would not have anywhere near as many people reading or commenting on my site. I also wouldn’t have learned as much about starting a blog in the first place.  So what is a linky party you ask?  It is basically just a place (someone’s blog) where you can post (link up) one of your blog posts for other people to see and to look at and read other’s posts as well.  There is also a very good tutorial on how these #linkys work written by Cuddle Fairy.  I have been joining 3-5 of these a week based on how much time I have.  You can find links to several of my favorites so far on my sidebar. Each linky party is unique and has its own badge and set of rules.

 

5.Social Media Graphics– Like I mentioned earlier, I really started this whole process knowing very little about websites and graphics.  One of the things that has really helped me out are two websites that make it easy to create graphics and find free images to use if you aren’t a professional photographer (certainly not me) and don’t have lots of photo editing skills (again not me).  The first site I encountered from a similar blog post to this mentioned Canva, which has all the tools to help you not only find nice images but also play around with them to create a good social media graphic. It shows you step by step how to go about it.  My feature image for this post was made through Canva.  They also can help you set up an image that is perfect for whatever social media site you are specifically wanting to post it on (Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram).  The second site I found out about is Unsplash.  This is a site (and there are several others) that, if you sign up, you can receive a certain amount of free images by photographers who gave up their copyright.  This is so that you can use the image for your personal use without causing any legal issues.

There is my list of 5 things I’ve learned about starting a blog.  I hope that this is something another newbie will find helpful as I did just a month ago.  Let me know if you have any other suggestions about what I talked about.  I plan on writing a follow up post next month on my favorite Linky Parties.

Disclaimer: I chose to share the links in this post on my own and am not gaining anything from doing so.  Just sharing what has worked for me!

 

Lots of love to you all!

You Baby Me Mummy
Pink Pear Bear



43 thoughts on “5 things I learned from my first month blogging”

    • It was the first post I found that explained the whole thing in detail. Wouldn’t have made my first linky party without. Thanks for the positivity. I tried to do me research before starting this whole thing.

  • It’s amazing what you learn in a year. I love linkies. I an so glad I moved over to WordPress but the sound self hosting sounds scary but it also gives you more creative freedom. Here’s to many more blogging years X #kcacols

    • I can only imagine what I all I will know and how I will grow in a year. And yes linkies are awesome! I’m glad you like WordPress as well. Good to hear from people who have been around longer. Thanks for reading.

    • Naomi, thanks for reading! And I enjoy meeting new people and their blogs. Look forward to reading yours 🙂 Linky parties are awesome and a great way to get readers and build a community. Search #linky or #linkyparty in twitter and you will find many options.

  • I must have started blogging around the same time as you. You seem to have picked up a lot more than I have though. Haha. I’ll definitely be checking out some of those linkies on your sidebar too! x
    #triballove

    • Thanks Ruth! I just had a lot of help found some great posts on the subject. You should definitely check out the linkies. I promise they won’t disappoint you.

  • Wow, you are really up together after only 1 month!! I think I still had the default theme, and no plugins at all until about 6 months in!! I know what you mean about constantly changing your theme though, once I did change mine, I did have a thing about changing it constantly!! I’ve recently bought one from Pipdig, which I’d really recommend! They were really reasonably priced, and help with installation, and have loads of features! It’s great to have your blog linked to lots of social media, although sometimes I find updating them all a full time job in itself! It’s really good to have other bloggers who write such fabulous and useful posts-I’ve used a lot of posts from You Baby Me Mummy to help me out-Aby has an incredible amount of technical knowledge! It looks like you’ll be helping other new bloggers with the technical side, in no time at all! I hope you continue to love your time blogging!
    #bigpinklink

    • I’ve been trying to avoid paying for a theme, although I fear that’s the only way I will find what I am looking for. I was specifically trying to find a layout that I liked for free that would let me have social media buttons on the header of my page. I’ll have to check out Pipdig. Yes updating social media has become very time consuming. I’ve decided to pick just a few to really focus on. Thanks for reading and I’m looking forward to learning from you!

  • You sure have learnt a lot in a month took me the best part of 6 to master all of that, well done you. Think how much you’ll master in a year. Happy blogging #bigpinklink

    • Thank you dear! It has taken a lot of research. I’m looking forward to soaking up some more knowledge.

  • You have totally got it together! Well done you! I’ve been at it about 3 months now, and don’t feel as organised or with it as you are. I think I’m putting myself under too much pressure and entering ‘headless chicken’ mode! Thanks for your insights. #TheList

    • Thank you Cal! Don’t feel so pressured. I’m not really that organized. I started joining too many linkies and then couldn’t’ keep up with comments and only write about a post a week. Not enough time in the day.

    • Thanks dear! I bought a fancy planner and am hoping to get more organized soon. It doesn’t start until July though so that’s my excuse lol.

      • Popping back again from #KCACOLS – I need to get myself one of those planners, I felt very guilty when all of the tribe said they have them and are so organised! Ho hum, something to think about lol…xx #triballove

        • I haven’t started using mine yet. It doesn’t start until July. But I’m hoping it will help me. Not really organized myself; more flying by the seat of my pants.

  • It seems you are actually very clued up on blogging and have accomplished quite a bit in your first month, I’m sure you will go from strength to strength xx #BigPinkLink #TheList

  • Great list! I learned many of the same things in my first month. I’m also a big fan of Canva and link parties. I love the creativity of the graphics and seeing all of the other posts people write. I’ve only been blogging around 6 months and find that I just keep on learning. There’s so much info out there and so many possibilities. Good luck on your blogging journey #KCACOLS

  • I can’t believe that you have only been doing this for a month!! Your blog is already amazing, what is it going to be like after 6 months!! Well done lovely and keeeeeeeeep blogging 🙂 Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday

  • Thanks for these great tips. I have been blogging for 2 years and still don’t know enough about plug ins. I think I shall go and have a look at the link you gave. Thank you.
    Amanda. #kcacols

  • You are doing better after a month than I have done in a year lol. Thanks for these tips, I am always looking for blogging ideas/tips to help me, I don’t think we can ever have enough blogging information.
    #KCACOLS

  • Oh thank you so much for this! It really is useful. I have been doing it two months and am nowhere near where you are with everything. I really struggle with the technical side so I will try some of these. Thank you. Tribal Chat sounds great – can anyone join in?
    Congratulations on the big 3.0! I have to agree with your reasons for starting blogging.
    Great post. X #KCACOLS

    • I’m glad it was helpful! I love doing research😊 I know I’m crazy lol. And yes anyone can join. Checkout the link for more info and add @mummyinatutu on Twitter. She can get you set up.

  • You’ve done great in a month! I still need to get on Pinterest and think about going self-hosted so I can use all those plugins etc! Well done you! Xx #KCACOLS

    • It really helped me a lot because I knew nothing about plugins before I started y blog. There are some pretty cool ones. Thanks for reading. And I love your blog your doing great as well.

  • I’ve been blogging just over a year and I still don’t know what plug ins are! I’ve looked a bit but it confused me! Ha ha! I use widgets though, and Canva for my graphics on posts. I think you’ve done brilliantly to say you’ve only been at it a month, and I started the same reason as you, to do something for myself after becoming a mummy ON my 30TH BIRTHDAY! 🙂 #KCACOLS

    • Plugins can be very confusing. Even after I download many of the cool ones it can be hard to figure out how to set them up right. I do a log of googling these days. I think it’s the reason why many of use start blogging! And it’s great that we have formed such a supportive community. Thanks for commenting 🙂

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    I know you are busy, so I’ll keep this quick. Recently, I came across [MWH-momblog] and I thought this would be something you’d like to mention. Of course, I am more than happy to write a brief introduction to the article for you to put on your website.

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