Disclosure: This blog post contains affiliate links.
 
It can be so exciting when you first start and launch your blog. You have a platform where you can write and share your creations with the online world! You can share stories, experience, lessons, knowledge, media …
 
If you are anything like me, you will be so excited to want to do everything at once. Personally, when I first launched my blog, I had read so much about blogging and carried out a variety of online courses, that I wanted to do everything at once, to promote my blog, share it and grow it.
 
I found that I was telling myself to have patience and trust that everything would work out at the optimum time.
 
And so, I decided to share this post with you today. If you are a beginner blogger, or you have recently launched your blog. I am going to share with you;
 
 

11 Super Easy Small Steps, To Help Share And Grow Your Blog!

 
 
 
 

1. Sitemap

This is such an important step for a new blog and this basically involves creating a sitemap for your blog and submitting your sitemap to search engines such as Google, for indexing.
By carrying out this important step, this will allow Google to index your blog, and you will start the process of appearing in search engine results pages. Very important if you want people to find your blog!

So what is a sitemap? A sitemap is usually written in XML code,  there are many free plugins which create the sitemap for you, making it super easy!
 
The link below is for the Google Sitemap plugin, which automatically generates an XML sitemap for your WordPress website, and helps search engines index your blog.
 
 
 

2. Integrate Google Analytics

google analytics to grow your new blog traffic
Google Analytics is a brilliant tool to monitor how many people are viewing your website and to find out where your traffic is coming from; organic search, social,  direct etc.
 
The great thing about Google Analytics is that, although it has so many useful features to help understand and grow your traffic, you don’t need to know exactly how to use Google Analytics to benefit from it!
 
I find it extremely useful knowing how much monthly traffic my blog receives, as it allows me to make SMART targets and goals to increase this.
 
Integrating Google Analytics into your blog is super easy. Simply go to Google Analytics, create a free account and add your website. You will receive a unique piece of code which you will need to enter into the head section of your blog.
 
As I use the DIVI theme for my blog, there is a dedicated head section making this easy. If you do not use the DIVI theme, you can install a free headers and footers plugin to add this code.
 
Once you have added the code from Google Analytics to your blog, it will take a few weeks for Google Analytics to gather data from your website visitors.
 
 

3. Site Title & Description

By creating a keyword rich site title and description for your blog, this will help your blog to rank higher in search engines, for searches using those keywords.
 
For e.g. if you blog about yoga. Your site title may sound like, ” Yoga Blog | Yoga Health & Wellness”
There are some great plugins making it easier for you to enter this information, such as Yoast SEO.
 
 
 

5. Social Media Accounts

Sharing your blog content on social media is a great way to promote your blog and gain more visitors to your blog. There are plugins available where you can add social sharing icons to your blog posts, Social Warfare is a great plugin for this.
 
I would also recommend including social icons for the accounts that you currently use, where people can follow the link to see your profile, and then follow you.
 
 

5. Topic Ideas

blog topic nice ideas categories for your blog
If you have already carried out the above tasks, great! You are well on your way to developing a successful blog for people to find and enjoy.
 
Another super useful task to do at this point is to focus on what you want to achieve from your blog;
 
– What do you want to write about?
– What do you want to share?
 
It is very useful to have a brainstorming session, answering these questions but allow yourself to keep writing down ideas!
 
Once you have a load of ideas down, you can begin to group these ideas by category/topic and begin to see a pattern emerging.
A lot of successful bloggers advise that it is best to focus your blog on a niche topic.
 
Using our previous example of yoga, if you are looking to read more about yoga, which of the following blogs would you prefer from below?
 
– A yoga and fitness blog – blogging about yoga, fitness and wellness.
– A yoga and lifestyle blog- Blogging about yoga, food, travel, photography and gardening.
 
By narrowing down your topic and blog category, it makes it easier to attract more readers to your blog, who want to hear what you have to say!
 
 

6. Branding

As your blog begins to grow, it will start to take on its own persona and branding will really help to develop this!
 
By this point, you are receiving visitors to your blog, you are sharing posts on social media, you have identified your key topic and highlighted those keywords in your site title & description. Now is a perfect point to take that identity one step further, and create branding.
 
This can include; a site logo, specific colours, typography and using specific fonts on your blog. You do not have to have a degree in graphic design to be able to create a simple but effective branding strategy.
 
There are some awesome tools out there (free!) which can help you achieve this. I recommend my favourite tool to get you started; Canva!
 
Canva is fantastic. You can create a free account, Canva offers existing templates for projects such as; logo design, social media imagery, Pinterest graphics etc. It is a simple interface with lots of free templates and features to help get you started.
Have fun, play around and begin creating your personal branding for your blog!
 
 
 

7. FavIcon

If you are not familiar with a favicon, this is the icon that appears in browser tabs and bookmarks. The favicon is usually 16 x 16 pixels square and helps to create that unique identity and branding to your blog.
 
Favicon Generator – A useful tool where you can enter your blog URL and view how your Favicon appears on different devices; iPhone, Android, desktop browsers etc.
 
Faviconer – A useful website where you can upload an image and save it in the correct format for a Favicon (.ico)
 
Once you have your Favicon, this is usually saved to the root (main) folder, if you are using FTP.
 
Alternately for WordPress blogs, there are plugins available which help you to load your Favicon such as; Favicon by Real Favicon Generator
 
 
 

8. About Page

If you do not already have an about page,  now is a great time to create one. An about page is so useful because it allows visitors to get a deeper insight into your blog, which will help them to relate and connect with you, building that all-important relationship.
 
 
writing an effective about page on your new blog website
 
 
There is a lot of information on what the “Best about page” should be. From my experience, I have narrowed this down to the following;
 
– A clear clean image of yourself, this helps visitors to connect with you and see the face behind the writing.
 
– A short description about you, your story and what has inspired you or lead you to create your blog. With this description, although it is about you, it is important to relate this to your audience. For e.g. If you have come across a problem related with your blog, solved that problem, and now you want to share how you did it on your blog, so that readers can solve their problems too. Tell your audience. Find a way to connect your story with theirs, so that they can connect with you and feel inspired to want to follow your blog.
 
– What readers can expect to find on your blog.
 
– Perhaps include some links to posts that you have already written, for e.g. the best of [name of your blog]
 
 
 

9. Optin Forms

I’m sure you have come across optin forms on other blogs. These can be; pop-ups, signup forms in a sidebar, sign-up forms inside a blog post etc.
 
By this point in your blog, if you have done all of the above, the most important challenge now is to get readers to come back. The best way to do this is by growing your email list and getting them to subscribe to your blog email list, and the best way to do this is through optin forms.
 
 
How do I Add Optin Forms To My Blog?
 
Well, you have a few options, and as with options, some are better than others. For a free basic option, there are plugins available where you can include a sidebar optin and begin to generate some email signups. The downside of this option is that the forms are usually quite generic, limiting on design and where you can place them.
 
email marketing 2018 create email opt-in with bloom elegant themes
Another option, If you are a member of Elegant Themes, and use the DIVI theme, (which is an amazing WordPress theme), is Bloom.
 
By selecting the package with the plugin upgrade, you have access to the BLOOM  plugin. This is a brilliant feature where you can include opt-ins in a variety of ways, including; pop-ups, header opt-ins, sidebar opt-ins etc.
 
 
 
Other company’s that offer different packages for optins include;  Leadpages and Sumo.
 
Any optin form is better than nothing, and so if you begin with a free plugin, great! Get building your email subscribers list with optin forms!
 
 

10. Freebie

This follows on from point 9 on optins. You may find that after some time of using an optin saying, “Subscribe for latest news and posts”, that you don’t actually receive many subscribers. Generally, people need to have more of an incentive to do what you tell them, and that’s where freebies come in!
 
You can create a freebie to utilise with your optin forms and give your readers something for subscribing.
 
The benefits of this are that it will grow your email list much quicker, and your email list is basically a list of potential customers for you to target. A freebie does not have to take a lot of time to create and depends on what your blog topic/ niche is about.
 
Here are some freebie ideas for you;
 
– ebook – It doesn’t have to be hundreds of pages, remember quality over quantity
 
– A free email course – If you have something valuable to teach/share, this may be a great freebie idea!
 
– A checklist pdf- Quick to create, and useful for readers. For e.g. if you are a food blogger, you could give away a free recipe shopping list for people to subscribe.
 
– If you offer a service, you could offer a discount to email subscribers. Giving them a coupon code for their discount upon subscribing.
 
 
Get creative!
 
For more information on understanding email marketing and how to grow your email list, please see my blog post;
 
 
 
 
 

11. Download Plugins

I have already mentioned quite a few useful plugins above including;
 
– Social warfare- for sharing blog content on social media
-Yoast – to help optimise your blog SEO
 
 
There are so many useful plugins on WordPress which can help to add extra features to your blog. I would recommend not going mad and adding too many, as this can slow down your site speed and affect your SEO.
 
However below are some popular plugins which you may benefit from using;
 
Backup WordPress – It is important to carry out regular backups of your blog, for protection & security.
WP Super Cache – Speeds the loading time of your site and thus improves your site SEO
Google Adsense – If you are interested in monetising your blog with ads, this is a useful plugin.
WooCommerce– Is a fantastic free plugin for adding an online shop, if you have anything to sell online, this is a great plugin!
MailChimp for WordPress – If you have a MailChimp account, this plugin is a great way to add a free optin to your blog, and begin gathering email subscribers.
Donations Made Easy – If you are a charity blog, this is a very useful plugin, adding a donation box to your blog.
 
 
 
 
 

 

Further Reading

By carrying out these 11 easy steps after starting your blog, you are well on your way to building a successful unique blog!

Want some further reading to help you on your blogging journey? Check out these great books on blog writing;

 

 

Alternatively, check out these great articles on blogging;

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this post!
 
 
Is there anything you feel that you are struggling with after launching your blog? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!
 
 
Have a great day!
 
Emily x
 
 
 
11 things to do after starting a new blog