Are you wondering how to blog smarter? With the changing blogging environment over the past year, many bloggers are wondering what they need to do to make more money, get more traffic and spend less time online. Before we get much further, let me be upfront. There is no magic solution to the changes that have happened. And, no one seems to know if it's permanent or not.
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How to Blog Smarter
When I started blogging 10 years ago, all it took to get traffic was an interesting article, relatively good photos, and a few social shares. I could visit my blog a few times a week for a few hours and then go back to real life. For most bloggers, blogging isn't like this any longer. They find themselves spending endless hours every day writing, photographing, promoting, seo-ing, updating, engaging and hoping that the next post is the one that skyrockets their pageviews back where they were.
Let's be honest here, it's not happening for a few reasons.
In the early days of blogging, nobody knew anything about nofollow and dofollow links. SEO wasn't something that bloggers had ever heard of or spent any time on. People posted what they wanted to without consideration for word count, heading tags, or keywords. The web grew and grew and Google had a fit. At least that's what it seems like. Now, there are regular Google updates where they penalize blogs for doing things they don't like whether that's linking to the wrong places, having too many ads, not writing enough words or not understanding SEO. Blog traffic for many dropped substantially, especially with the last Bracket Update.
It used to be that popular pins on Pinterest were seen much more than they are now. All it took was a few viral pins on Pinterest to see huge surges of traffic to your blog. Pinterest has changed the way it's showing content to people and that has caused a massive drop in traffic for many that relied on Pinterest for traffic.
For many, Facebook was a huge source of traffic. All it took was having your recipe or craft shared on a popular Facebook page to get a nice traffic burst. Now that Facebook has become pay for play, you really only see that traffic if you pay for it which is something many bloggers cannot afford to do as work has slowed.
So, how can you blog smarter?
A loss in traffic and loss in income have sent many bloggers back to real-world jobs, at least part-time. Many others have taken on extra jobs online or started looking into retail arbitrage. Many now have less time to spend on blogging and need to figure out how to blog smarter. Here are a few tips that work for me.
If you have the money, or a spare child or two, delegate a few of the things that take too much time for you to do. Consider having someone help with scheduling social media or managing your Pinterest account.
If paying someone isn't in your budget, think about slowing down. Nobody says that you have to share 10 times on Facebook every day especially considering the diminished reach. If it's not earning you money, ask yourself if it's worth doing.
You may need to consider automating a few things that you do. Instead of manually scheduling to Facebook and Twitter each day, have you considered NextScrips or Tweet Old Post to automatically send your content out?
If you need to slow down, take a look at where your time is going versus what's earning you money. I receive many pitches for product only versus compensation. Since these posts take almost as much time as sponsored posts but do not actually earn me anything, I need to stop accepting them.
It may be time to eliminate some of the things that you do. How many times a day do you check your email or Facebook? Are you in Facebook groups that are time consuming without being productive? Look at where you're spending your time and cut out what you can. Learn when to quit.
The blogging world is constantly changing. No one seems to know if these changes are permanent or temporary. It's not clear whether the slow down in work is something that is cyclical or a long-term adjustment. If you're wondering how to blog smarter to make money in other ways, consider starting with a few of these.
Finally, check out these productivity hacks.