Thursday, February 16, 2012

What I wish I had known before I started blogging

When I first became a blogger, which feels like a really, really long time ago but was actually not that long at all, I really did not know much about blogging whatsoever. I had no idea about what went on, felt as though everyone would hate me and it really stopped me from enjoying it at first - I was too busy worrying about it to actually enjoy it. I would have benefited from reading about important things to know as a blogger, but of course I never read anything of the sort. I just learnt from my mistakes and the advice of other bloggers and here I am now.

So, I thought I might create a post listing lessons I have learnt and things that I think is important for a blogger to know. I recently stumbled across a whole heap of new bloggers, all of who have such brilliant blogs already, and I thought that maybe they would find this post useful.

Stick to a theme
Obviously I personally wanted my blog to be primarily about beauty. I am hoping to start branching out into fashion, but it is mainly about beauty. I think it is really important to stick to a theme that you are going to have your blog about, because it draws in relevant and interested readers and they know what to expect. Whether it be food, lifestyle, beauty or fashion, keep it to some sort of theme.

Write about your passions
Or at least, something that you are interested in. When I started this blog, beauty wasn't really something that I was obsessed with. Let me tell you, this blog has fuelled the explosion of my new interest in everything makeup and beauty. I never thought it would (and could) be so much fun. Sure, I may have spend a significantly large amount of money on beauty in comparison to previous years, but it has been so much fun and been the cause of so much enjoyment. Write about something you love, because there is nothing worse than someone writing about something they are not interested in, it really shows in their writing.

Pictures tell 1000 words
One of my better photos - clear and easy to see colour,
shape, consistency etc.
When I first started this blog, it had no photos. Why? I actually have no idea! A reader mentioned it, and man I am so glad she did! I can't thank her enough because it made me realise how vital it is to have photos on your blog. They are so important, especially with product reviews because they can explain so much more than words ever will. It is also really important to have good quality photos too, where possible. A plain background and good focus makes a huge difference.

Quality means so much
It is important to write when you are in the mood for writing. The stuff that I write when I don't feel like writing is absolutely rubbish, and it is bad for everyone. Good quality posts are incredibly important and make a huge difference to the quality and likability of your blog.

Respond to comments as much as possible
Comments are the best things. I was afraid of them at first, I just thought they were an invitation for negativity, a breeding ground for hate comments. I am pleased to say that I have not received any comment that has upset me or offended me. In fact, every one of them has been so lovely and positive, and every time I see one on the dashboard it makes my day. Without comments this blog would not be anything like it is now, and it wouldn't be nearly as enjoyable for me to write.

Interact with readers - what do they want?
Whilst readers shouldn't decide on everything, their opinion is important too. It is important to listen to what they want to read and what they are interested in. By no means does that mean you should stop writing about what you love - let's say that's movie reviews for example - and write about the life cycle of a maggot just because someone else is interested in that, but it is important to have a relationship with them too. Polls are a good way to interact.

Blog often, where possible
It's so frustrating when you begin following people and you love what they write about, and then they don't write anything for three months. I think it is important to blog regularly and consistently. Of course things happen, you get busy and you don't post for a week or two. No one is going to hold that against you, but three months with no explanation? That's rather frustrating.

Interesting and attractive photos from time to
time make all the difference.
Make your blog aesthetically pleasing and easy to read
A huge factor that influences whether I follow someone or not, is whether their blog is easy to read and relatively nice to look at. That doesn't necessarily mean pretty flowers surrounding the headings, but if it has a good, solid layout it makes a massive difference.

Spell with care!
Spend time reading over your posts in order to eliminate spelling mistakes. I cannot stand reading blogs where every second word is spelt incorrectly. I don't care about the odd spelling mistake here and there, but when it is blatantly obvious that the author couldn't care less about spelling, it really bothers me!
Read other, similar blogs
I learnt so much from reading other beauty blogs, the reviews and everything in between. You hear about products to look out for, what people want to know about products and the styles of other writers. Most importantly, it is great fun.

Don't be afraid to make your own rules
When I first made my blog, I really didn't like how it looked and the colours and what not, but I was really reluctant to change it because I thought that maybe there was so blogging law that said 'Thou shalt never change their blog appearance" or something of the sort. I am so glad I ended up changing it! Don't be afraid to go ahead and do what you feel like.

I would love for you guys to comment with your own advice and experiences too!


  1. Great advice hun. All so true. You can learn so much from looking at other blogger's perfect/successful posts and also from their mistakes.
    Xox Soph

  2. You really learn a lot too by looking back at your first posts and seeing how they compare with your recent ones.

  3. Great post Candice!! I think the key is just to enjoy blogging, there's no point in doing it if you aren't enjoying it as it will show to your readers and you don't want to make it a chore!

    Hannah xox

  4. Great tips. I'm still learning new things about blogging everyday. Tips from lovely bloggers like yourself are very valuable. I still haven't found my "voice" as yet.Know what I mean? The voice that your readers read your posts in, and eventually learn to expect from your writing style. Be it humorous, serious or to the point.English is a third language to me, I feel I can't express as well as I want to.

  5. Great tips and I'm always changing my blog layout, I get bored easily with it and can never decide what looks good! Sometimes I think my blog lacks a proper theme because it really is a bit of all sorts but then it reflects me. But commenting is key and its one of the things that bug me about some bloggers that they never take the time to respond or answer comments or return the view.

  6. Pandora - I know what you mean, you'll get there. You are doing an amazing job considering English isn't your first!

    Rachael - It's so hard finding a layout you like! I think the theme is you to be honest, I mean, if you write about you then your theme is you!


  7. Hannah - Sorry, for some reason your comment came up in Spam and I didn't see it until afterwards! Thanks, I couldn't agree more, you have to love it and that's the main thing!


  8. Thank you for sharing this: Its been so helpful. I am new to blogging and its helped me visualize more what I am trying to achieve with my blog :)


  9. Hello Candice, just discovered your blog and I love it ! carry on with your great posts :-)
    x Greetings from London, UK

  10. Dipsy - No problem, I am so pleased that it helped you!

    Mademoiselle Nature - Oh thanks! Glad you like it! Following you back!


  11. This post is actually encouraging. I'm guilty of the "no blogging for 3 months straight", mostly because I just lose interest after awhile and then suddenly, one day, bam! All the motivation to blog is there again. So, mostly I just blog what I think is interesting or what's gotten my attention lately.

    And I agree with the comments part, it really does make one's day =)

    1. That happens a little bit for me too. Maybe you could have a couple of spare posts in the drafts folder so when you lose interest you can post one of them and your readers aren't left alone for as long :) I think in the end, blogging is for the blogger to make them happy, and it is just an amazing bonus that other readers find it fun to read.

      Comments are the best!


    2. That's a good idea and blogging is for the blogger to express their thoughts and if people find it interesting enough for you to take their time away just to have a read, then, that's great.


Questions? Opinions? Feel free to comment as I love to hear what you have to say!

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