What You Need To Do To Make Your Blog A Success

Most people who become bloggers do so with high expectations of striking it rich. You can’t even blame them because the net is full of people promising they can show them how to make a whole lot of money online, saying that all they need is a blog or a set of websites. A few have actually done it and they get a whole lot of traffic because people think if they stick around long enough some of that fortune will rub off on them. Others haven’t come anywhere near making a decent online income but they write as if they hold the key to financial freedom. Unfortunately they manage to fool a lot of people, all those newcomers who come online to hopefully improve their financial status.

Many who fail to reach their dream of financial freedom continue the online life because they’ve come to love blogging. After all it has so much to offer, you get to express yourself, to share your knowledge with others and the interaction with your commentators is truly sublime. Unfortunately the rest will give up in disgust once they’ve come to realise it wasn’t as easy as they were made to believe.

Now, I’m not here to tell you that I have the secret because I haven’t and saying any different would make me as dishonest as all the rest. However, over the years I have discovered certain things that every blogger needs to know if they want to make their blog a success.

Traffic

El Alto, BoliviaThis is the most important part of making money online and yet most of those people selling their ‘secret to success’ fail to mention it. All they tell you is get your niche online and the money will start to flow in. Start up another ten and you will increase your income tenfold. Unfortunately no traffic means no customers which means no money and ten times nothing is still nothing.

Getting traffic is possible though but it takes a lot of work and a fair bit of time to drive traffic to your site. What makes things worse is you don’t want just any traffic, you want targeted traffic. This means if you have a blog that is selling computers you don’t want people coming over who are looking to buy dog collars.

The way to get targeted traffic is all tied into the keywords you use in your domain name, your headings, blog titles and posts. Even that is not going to work unless the search engines think you have something of value, and the way to do that is by getting backlinks via blog commenting, forums, writing articles but most importantly by writing brilliant content so other will link to it. My post How I Am Marketing My Online Lottery Niche highlights some of the strategy I’m using to market my latest blog.

A Product To Sell

Most everyone will tell you to make money online you need something that you can sell, preferablyscreen3 your own. Unfortunately most of us don’t have that and so we do the best we can by placing Adsense ads on our sites or by promoting other peoples products as an affiliate. I’ve had a bit of success selling products like FlexSqueeze (a brilliant blog theme), Market Samurai, web hosts and a few others. The problem with those products is once you sell someone a product they’re no longer a potential customer, at least not for that product, which means you’re forever looking for new customers.

In my post The Secret To Online Success Is Passive Income I outlined a few methods I used that were making me money on a regular basis. I also spoke about my latest venture, one that I am confident will be my biggest earner because I am now selling a product that people buy on a regular basis, lottery tickets. I am now in the process of driving traffic to Buy Online Lottery Tickets with the knowledge that every time I gain a customer I will make money whenever they purchase a lottery ticket online. I’m also offering others the opportunity to become a MyLotto affiliate giving them the same opportunity to make money online, knowing that I also make a percentage of their sales.

Building Your Brand

InteractionAt the beginning of the post I said the most important facet of making money online was driving targeted traffic to your blog, well that’s not quite true, there is something way more important. The most important part of your online businesses is YOU! You are the face of your business as everything you do online affects the way others perceive you. That being the case it doesn’t matter how much traffic you drive to your blog because if your online profile is suspect you’re screwed.

By everything I’m including blog commenting as this is by far the most popular method used by bloggers to market their blog. I’ve known this from the beginning and I am constantly surprised by the amount of people who fail to use commenting to their advantage. This is probably because done properly it takes time and many prefer quantity over quality failing to see that a lot of poor comments only serves to hurt their brant. If you’re not sure what constitutes a good comment I suggest you read Teaching People The Proper Way To Comment as I used this post to grade people on the quality of their comment.

One thing to remember while online is that unlike the offline world you have time to think before responding to any negative comment, or feedback on one of your products, that you may receive. Never, ever, let anger cloud your replies because once you blow up online you reveal to everyone your loss of control and lack of professionalism. Two posts taking about this subject that you may find interesting ate Kristi’s 3 Questions To Ask About Offensive Content On Your Blog, although you can apply this to a lot more than just blogging.

Social Media

Social media is an important facet of your online business and one that I still have a long way to go as far as online promotions go. It’s also very important as far as branding goes and so you have to be very careful how you conduct yourself when using them. Something that many people fail to realise is that almost everything you do online is open to public scrutiny and that being the case acting in a manner that can be seen as untoward by others can cost you business. So be very careful what you say online or even what you link to. You may think that something you saw online was extremely funny and so you tweet the link to all your followers not thinking that many of them may find it very offensive.

When it comes to social media it’s my opinion that ChingYa would have to be the online social media guru, blog posts like her 7+ Major Tips In Enhancing Your Upgraded FaceBook Page just goes to show the wealth of her knowledge. You could do a lot worse than going over there and learning from what ChingYa has to say.

Phew, I don’t normally rave on like this but I reckon I just had a lot to say, and even so there is probably so much that I left out. This is where you guys come in by using the comment section. What are you doing to make your blog a success? What have I missed out and how can we help each other to attain our goals.

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Peter Pelliccia

Aussie blogger who loves to blog and share everything that he has learned on his blogging journey, including blogging tips and ways to blog for money.

This Post Has 86 Comments

  1. Great tips. I’ve done all of it except for actually creating my own product. That is my next task to conquer.

  2. I think that in the age we’re in now, social media is a main focus in the internet. It should’ve been the first thing you listed, not the last. I mean everyone has a facebook and twitter account, now a business can capitalize on this HUGE audience. I always make a fan page for all my websites, it helps to grow a community.

    1. Perhaps one day Max but I think there is still a long way to go. Yes, you don’t want to have a bad social media image because it will hurt your brand, and yes I agree it is important but not as important as say having a good brand and a large amount of targeted traffic.
      Sire recently posted…Google +1 Showing Others Their Stamp Of ApprovalMy Profile

  3. I believe that social networking sites can be a key to success. So we have to use them wisely. Thanks to this post!

  4. Hi Sire

    Well written and informative post Sire. You covered all the main money making with your blog.

    I have had limited success with my on-line marketing and get more sales offline at present. Don’t have adsense or any paid advertising on my blog and hadn’t planned at the moment.

    However, I am planning a few changes eventually and will probably place some ads and do more with amazon too but that’s after my new site is up and running.

    However, I am setting up my new site at the moment. It is going to be a completely different biz model to my blog. Will compare the 2 once it has been up and running for a reasonable time. Will have ads on the new site and be selling through affiliate links too.

    Have a great weekend Sire and thanks for sharing with us. Appreciated.

    Patricia Perth Australia

    1. Hi Patricia, what I hope people get out of this post is that while you can makes money online it’s not as easy as others make it out to be. This way they will enter the fray with both eyes open.
      Sire recently posted…The Secret To Online Success Is Passive IncomeMy Profile

  5. Great well rounded post Sire covering all the basics.

    Looks as though I’m missing a few of the essentials, product to sell and social media, but this might be the post that gets me going.

    Cheers Peter
    Keith Davis recently posted…The Coolest Voice on the InternetMy Profile

  6. I get really good targeted traffic from something many in my branch (real estate agent) have miss; YouTube, first ranks Google the video clip often on the first page direct and I have in the beginning and the end of the video clip is both my blog and web URL. We have heard from many clients that they have starting follow our blog this way, and today when 95% of all homes sells starting on internet is this 10 points way.

    1. YouTube is something that I have only dabbled in but it is certainly something worth looking into. Unfortunately, like everything else you have to produce something to make you stand out from the crowd.


  7. Twitter:
    Actually, the one thing you missed is pay-per-click advertising, Adsense and the like. I know how much you hate those guys in general but you have their ads on this blog and other blogs and I have them on some of my websites. Neither of us is going to say that we’re getting rich of it, but this month, if things continue going well, I’m going to have my first $300 month. Not bad scratch for doing nothing except having some content that someone else likes. Actually, that’s just from Adsense; I’ll make more than that in total with some of the other advertisers I have on my sites.

    Still, it’s a long process. That site’s taken about 2 years to get to this level, and I haven’t been able to duplicate it anywhere else to this point. So it’s not easy to do, but it can be done.
    Mitch Mitchell recently posted…Best Buy Doesn’t Understand Social Media Or Customer ServiceMy Profile

    1. Hey Mitch, I did actually mention Adsense the beginning of the post, I reckon you missed it while speed reading :smoke_tb:

      $300 is pretty good Mitch,was that from your business blog?
      Sire recently posted…The Bellagio, The Jewel Of Las VegasMy Profile


      1. Twitter:
        Actually you mentioned it halfway through the post, and you’re right, I did miss it since I was looking for the products, since you titled that section “products”. lol

        No, I’m actually making the bulk of it from my medical billing site. I make very little from Adsense on my blogs, and of course you know Adsense banned it from IJS.
        Mitch Mitchell recently posted…June 12th, The Internet, And A VideoMy Profile

  8. Thanks for pointing that out! I just started to blog, and my reason is not to gain profit but to learn and challenge myself. Writing is my weakness, so by blogging I am forced to write. 🙂 while practicing my writing skills. Thanks for the great read!

    1. Hey Sanji, I’m sure it will help you a whole lot and that you will get so much more out of it.

  9. Fore sure there’s no secret formula to get rich on line, it’s just hard work and ingenious solutions. I’ve come to the conclusion that in order to draw attention you need to come up with something new – an idea, a product, a service etc. Of course this is not an easy thing to do, but it’s a goal that’s worth pursuing.

    1. Coming up with something new is a great idea, unfortunately that in itself is a pretty hard task because so many people are out there trying to do the same thing. Every time you think you’ve got it someone else has beaten you to it. Still, that’s no reason not to try.

  10. I think the chance to get rich with blogging is less than 1%. You have to have a topic which is interesting for many people and need to have a field which is not overcrowded by other bloggers. You also have to write articles which are truly unique, provide useful information and are interesting to read. This all takes a lot of work which will not pay off till the blog gets popular. – And this can take a while.

    The times where you can quickly build wealth as a blogger are over. There are just too many bloggers out there.

    1. Truth be told, the time to create wealth quickly these days is over, unless you can win the lottery. It takes time and a lot of hard work. Once people come to realise that then they won’t get sucked into get rich quick scams and then even more people will make less money online :laugh_tb:

  11. You’re absolutely right about building a customer base that can either be a one-time customer or one that can be a repeat buyer. Interesting idea to focus on the online lottery, let us know if you have any success with that you’d be willing to share.

    1. Don’t you worry Diana, once I get that site working so it’s producing a nice income you guys will be the first to know.

  12. Nicely written post with a lot of useful information. I do agree that it takes a lot of time and efforts to be successful and by that time, most people would have given up and try to find the next holy grail out there.

    Now actually i am focusing on promoting physical product and working with my partner to create my own product.

    1. Sounds like a plan Lee, I hope it all works out for you.

  13. I am a new blogger and really enjoyed this article. I started out just chronicling our Mexican beach house build but now I am trying to develop my site as a marketing site for our 2 vacation rentals, as well as a travel site. I am contemplating products I can sell and researching the ins and outs of advertising. Thanks for the advice. I wondered if ad-sense made site like mine look less professional. Thanks again for a great article!

    1. Hey Sherry, I’m sure you will do well because you have one very important ingredient and that is you’re writing about something you love. I’m sure your readers are going to enjoy what you have to offer. :smile2_ee:

  14. I completely agree that traffic is everything. So many obsess over how their site looks that they overlook the fact that w/o substantial traffic, no one will see it anyway. Great article.

    1. Still, you want to make sure your site looks just right otherwise you may scare your traffic away. :wink_ee:

  15. I like this post. I have never really considered creating my own product, i have been promoting affiliate products and earned some few bucks but that is not enough to pay my bills. I think I should create my product and then use social media to promote it.

    Do you think building a mailing list is so IMPORTANT?

    1. Creating a product that people want would certainly work but for me I’m going to focus on building my lottery business.

  16. Hi Sire,
    Whew! The post really rolled up all the things that are neeeded to make money online in one go. Like you said, I believe the first and foremost thing for making money online is traffic, no traffic means no money. I agree it is not easy and well nothing in life is easy as far as I know but atleast earning online gives us the liberty to save time for other things too.

    Regards,
    Shiva

    1. The best thing about on online business is that you are your own boss and you work the hours that you want when you want. Can’t get better than that.

  17. Phew! Read the whole post and loved every bit of it. I have a long way to go in quite a few of those departments but with time, dedication, and effort, I will get there. Working on the that main one right now and that is traffic. I am planning to create my own product in the future but I need to get things together first and reach some goals I haven’t accomplished yet.
    Meka recently posted…20+ Ways to Earn Money From HomeMy Profile

    1. Sorry Meka, it’s a bit longer than my normal posts, but I did have a lot to say. I’m glad you read right through it and that you were able to get something from it. Good luck with attaining all your goals.

  18. Hey Sire,
    Great overview. This is the second time I have been here and may I say Wassup indeed 🙂

    I started my blog to actually sell my own service and it has worked out great. In the two years since I started my blog I have actually become fairly efficient and knowledgeable about SEO and blogging. Just a side benefit of trying to build a business online.

    I really like this feature that you have that shows up in the bottom left corner of my screen and gives me a preview of the previous post before this one. It is a popup, but very unobtrusive. Is that a plugin that you use for that?

    1. Hey Damon, that’s pretty cool isn’t it? :smile2_ee: That plugin is called upPrev Previous Post Animated Notification It should come up when you do a search from within the dashboard. BTW, it should be popping up on the right not the left :tongue_rolleye_ee:

      1. Hey Sire,
        Ya it is cool. I am going to download and play around with it. You are right. It is coming up on the right. I guess that is what you get when you stay up all night researching and doing SEO type stuff for your blog 🙂

        By the way, thanks for stopping by my site earlier.

        1. Don’t mention it, its what I do. If someone takes the time to read my post and leave a great comment I think it’s the least I can do to return the favour. You have a really interesting blog there Damon. :thumbup_tb:

  19. It is reality that blogging is considered online industry but to get income from this industry patience is required. Only relevant traffic can give fruit to the blogger. Social Medias are playing vital role to promote on the business but links from these medias are no follow.

    1. Patience yes but let’s not forget dedication and a fair bit of hard work,

  20. This was the first article I read on your blog and my first comment. A very comprehensive article.

    My blog is a personal affair and I’m not really trying to make any money from it so there’s no ads, nevertheless I have been trying to get a bit more traffic to it otherwise what’s the point? Part of that strategy has been reading articles like this and contributing via the comments. I’ve read a few now and this was one of the best all rounders I’ve seen.

    For what it’s worth (if anyone takes a look) I’ve realised that I’m making a few mistakes particularly with branding as one minute I’m talking about sales (my trade) the next public speaking and then I will rave about a sports car website. Not really consistent with branding. 🙂 So I’ll probably get around to creating a new one (as I’m enjoying this blogging!) and will have one for professional stuff and one for personal stuff (in the same way I have two Twitter accounts).

    Thanks for the article (Dugg and Stumbled), I look forward to following your Tweets on Twitter and reading some more.

    1. If your blog is not aimed at making money there is nothing wrong with not sticking to a particular topic. Take this blog for example, I’ve got a bit of everything in her from my poems to SEO. As long as you use categories and tags etc. people will find it fairly easy to navigate your blog.

      By brand I didn’t particular mean a niche blog but the way you are perceived by others.

      Glad you liked the post.

      1. I would agree with that Sire. The content of my blog is also as varied but I do use categories and in some posts I do use proper on page seo e.g. keyword density, keywords on h2 tags, etc.

        1. Yep, and then if you really want to make it easy for people to find their way around you post related links within the posts.

  21. Excellent post. One thing you didn’t mention is the talent to write good posts and you have it. I can’t imagine myself writing such a long and concise post.

    I see that you’re promoting good products too. Market Samurai is an excellent software.

    1. It’s nice of you to say so Mario and I’m sure if inspiration hits you, as it did me with his post, that you will write one just as good.

  22. As you all know, traffic is a pain. But the problem isn’t really in the traffic itself. I’ve seen some people with 20 visitors/day who make the same amount of money other people make with 400 visitors/day. So conversion is also another part of the equation. The business model that i really like is to start with affiliate marketing as it’s easy and doesn’t require a lot of expertise. After making some money and becoming knowledgeable in your niche, You need to create your own product. Thanks for the advice

    1. It’s a lot easier to convert if you have targeted traffic which is why it’s so important to use the right keywords.

  23. I agree that traffic is important to make blogs a success. I usually use social media to my advantage but I could only do link building. I haven’t tried to sell products or building brands.

    1. Which just goes to show that building traffic requires you take advantage of every means you can to drive people to your sites.

  24. You make some great points. I think it’s also important to make sure that your blog is optimized with the right widgets, social media sharing buttons, etc., so that visitors to your blog are able to navigate it and share your posts with others in the easiest way possible.
    Petra recently posted…Unser Netz soll sicherer werdenMy Profile

    1. Good point Petra, you have to make it easy for people to promote your site to their social media friends and placing the right widgets on your site is a great way to do this,

  25. Thanks for this post. I just finished fixing up one of my sites and am having a hard time at figuring out what I need to do to make it successful. I have bookmarked your site… looking forward to a lot more tips! (found you on Bing!)

    1. Matthew, sometimes it better to see what has come before than it is to wait what is going to happen next :wink_ee:

  26. You have a lot of helpful information here, Sire. I’m glad to have stumbled upon your site through The Wonder of Tech. You’re absolutely right… One of the reasons people visit a site is because of the person specifically, and your words “do” indeed follow you on the Internet. It’s something to think about as we share and interact with others.

  27. Nicely written post with a lot of valuable information. I do agree that it takes a lot of time and efforts to be successful and by that time, most people would have given up and try to find the next holy grail out there. this is my first blog, pray for my success.

    1. Only to find there is no holy grail without having to work for it.

  28. When I started with my first blog 4 year back I failed miserably because I didn’t know much about on page optimization and link building. Without traffic and no revenue I had no option but to abandon my blog and let it die.

    But I learned my lesson. Content is surely king but without traffic I knew my sites would not survive. Since then I have spend and devoted lots of time to learn various techniques to drive traffic to my site.

    1. Most people will find that success does not come without working at it in some fashion John. Good on you for giving it another try.

  29. This is a great post that covers the important aspects of blogging and creating a brand online. For the bloggers, it is essential to understand that the only way to attract lot of visitors is presenting the relevant information in the most impressive way; in a way that the visitors can relate to. Whereas for the information seekers, it is essential to look for the information in the right places. It is crucial to check the authenticity of the blog/website before considering the information mentioned in it. After publishing a blog, it is also important to understand what people want to read. I absolutely agree with the fact that social media presence certainly helps to improve the online presence and build a brand online. Any company can easily connect to the existing customers and perspective customers through having a presence on websites like Facebook and Twitter. Along with the points mentioned above, I would also like to stress on social bookmarking. Social bookmarking makes your blog accessible to a wide range of people and thereby your blog gets a better search engine ranking.

    1. Thanks Rachael for a well thought out comment. Because of the length of it though you may want to consider using paragraphs. :wink_ee:

  30. I think quality of content is the main factor for success in blogging. Traffic also a main content….

  31. Although I believe that social media dictates where the traffic and income goes, it is only a tool that will optimize the blogging process. I firmly believe that content is the key. Being consistent with your schedule of posting and always being able to think of new ideas for articles will drive traffic into your site and money into your bank accounts.
    June recently posted…Business Credit Card Regulations – Four Senators Urge Fed to Increase RegulationsMy Profile

    1. You are right June, as I have said many times, content is very important but good content is no guarantee that you will get traffic. To get traffic you have to let people that you have good content and that means working at it.

  32. What am i doing here, was looking to buy a dog collar.I absolutely agree both in the need of comenting, but also using social media. Building a blog can consume so much time, but it becomes a passion so every day we sit at our computers and work away. It is nice those when that first bit of money comes to us from our blog.

    1. You are right Larry, you need to use any means at your disposal to direct traffic to your site and if you do it properly you will see that first check.

  33. Hi.
    Thanks for your post. I’m a newbie in blogging, and your tips are very useful for me. I have a blog with quality and unique content, but there was no visitors. After reading your post i decided to promote my blog via youtube, and the results didn’t take much time.

    1. Really? I wouldn’t have thought that YouTube would have been your fist choice as it’s been my experience that it provides the least amount of traffic.

  34. Great post Sire, especially the images! I’m doing all that you suggested, except selling a product. I completely agree with you though that it’s important to take these steps for a successful blog. I hope that these steps continue to provide you with well-deserved success!

    1. You know Carolyn, they actually do work, for me at least, and I’m sure that they will work for others as well. Glad you liked the post.

  35. >Many who fail to reach their dream of financial freedom continue the online life because they’ve come to love blogging.

    That’s what happened to me. I fell for the easy to get rich online pitch.

    >the rest will give up in disgust once they’ve come to realise it wasn’t as easy as they were made to believe.

    Just today I went to a blog that I used to visit regularly; It’s gone. Pot Politics is a popular one that is gone. I wonder what happened to him.
    Ned Carey recently posted…Promote Your Website and the Google+ ProjectMy Profile

    1. Just today I went to a blog that I used to visit regularly; It’s gone. Pot Politics is a popular one that is gone. I wonder what happened to him.

      You’re right Ned, he is gone and looks like he took bloggerluv with him. Man, I never though John would give it all up. Sure hope he’s OK.
      Sire recently posted…How Good Is The FlexSqueeze Theme, Really?My Profile

  36. I think one of the most important elements to a successful blog is always delivering consistent content that the audience expects. In my opinion everyone has to find their own blogging voice, and keep that consistent, and your users will expect a certain level from your blog after that. I am a firm believer of consistency in everything you do in life.

    -Jean

    1. Yes, and apart from that you also have to socialize with other bloggers by commenting on their blog so that other people know you exist, otherwise no-one will know you have any content available, whether it is good or not.

  37. I read your post with great interest. You are right, the gurus all tell you to put up a gzillion sites, but if you get no traffic you are dead in the water.
    Since it is nearing the time I should be getting up, I will have to come back tomorrow and re-read and follow some of the links you suggested. I am especially interested in optimizing my Facebook page which I have neglected.

  38. I think the key to making one’s blog a success is persistence. I think invariably one gets some part of the blog wrong – either the niche, keywords, product or something else connected to the business. It is an iterative process of figuring out what works and what does not work. Also, it takes a long time before a decent traffic starts showing up at the blog. All in all – this requires constant effort and a lot of persistence.

    1. You are so right Amanda, perseverance is a big part of any successful blog. Like any business it sometimes does require that you tweak it here and there until you come across the right combination.

  39. Thank you very much for all this valuable advice on how to make your blog a success. I will try out your tips and tricks one by one over the next couple of weeks in my open research project on best practices to increase blog traffic. The aim with this research is to identify the key most effective and efficient practices to increase blog traffic. So far I have already tested some of the tips and had some surprising results. The dedicated blog for this research is located here

    1. Hi Peter,

      I fished your comment out of the spam bin. It may have ended up there because you posted a link in your comment, which I removed. The link really wasn’t necessary, as it’s the same as the url in your name, and adds nothing to the post.

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