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New to the Mom Bloggers Club community & new to blogging in general.

Hi everyone!  I'm "brand new" to the Mom Bloggers Club community as I just set up an account today.  Not only am I new to Mom Bloggers Club I am also new to the blogging community as well.  I wanted to introduce myself and ask if any of you had tips on how I can succeed as a new blogger.

I'll give a short introduction of who I am.  Short because well, as much as I love reading about myself, not everyone else does.   ;-)  My name is Alicia and I am 27 years old.  I am a Georgia born and raised girl with two Georgia born and they will be raised peaches.  My oldest is my daughter Haley and our newest addition is Dray who was born on October 9, 2015 weighing in at 7lbs 10oz and 19 3/4in long.  I have worked in the animal industry my entire life beginning with short employment at a local big box pet supply retailer before moving onto assisting in animal rescue, I also have over 5 years experience at a veterinarian office, and currently have discovered the grooming field where I have been for the past 2 years.  Needless to say, we're an animal loving family!

When I began blogging my primary reason was going to be to review products.  I figured it would be easier for myself to manage the blog if it only focused on one topic versus a million different ones.  Well, my brain doesn't work like that and I have found that sticking to one topic just isn't possible for me to comprehend or do.  I would never have any content to add because while writing a review I'd be thinking about how awesome a blog post about how my daughter is just the best kid in the world. 

We have a limited income so I am hosting my blog on Wix right now with a free template.  When I first began I was so focused on the name and template of the blog that I was blind to the fact that I wasn't creating any content and even if my blog looked "awesome" that my readers wouldn't have any content to read.  What's the point of visiting a blog if there isn't any available content?  Ya, pretty useless.  My layout on my Wix website still isn't up to par to me and I think I need to actually tone it down quite a bit.  I also do still plan on eventually getting a domain name so I can host it and purchasing a template because I'm not really savvy with website building.

I am still having trouble thinking of content to write.  I only receive so many products to review because I am new at that as well and our family doesn't get out much with a newborn at home.  So, I feel like I'm lacking in content.  When I do think of an idea though, if I am able to I stop what I am doing, sit at my computer, and write, even if I save it as a draft because I am unsure if I want to publish or not yet.

What do your blogs focus on and what tips do you have to being a successful blogger?  Do you have advice on the best blogging templates and do you stick to one niche or several?  Do you think one niche is smarter or is several a better way to go?  Who do you recommend for the webhosting?  Any advice would be helpful and I look forward to getting to know you all! :)

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Check out BlogTyrant.com. I've gotten lots of great advice from that site about starting a blog. I've also been told not to expect to make any money on a blog for at least a year...not sure if that's accurate or not? I just started myself. I'm using WordPress for my blog. Seems to be what everyone says to use. I purchased a blog template and went from there. Every day is a learning experience...there's just so much to learn! Most important is to get content - quality & consistent - so you have people coming to your site. I use Google Analytics to track my traffic. Hope this helps...or at least gives you a place to start. :)

Blogtyrant.com is a website I haven't tried yet so once my little one decides to lay down I will check it out.  :)  How did you go about purchasing a blog template?  Right now I'm using a free one but I wouldn't like to purchase one so I can actually say it's "mine." Lol Good luck on your venture! :)

Go to Wordpress.org and you can click on "Themes" at the top of the page. It will give you access to their directory. Inside each theme you can preview the template to see what it looks like. You purchase directly from them. I believe you can only do this if you plan to register your own domain name and host your blog (pay versus a free host). What I've read, it's better to start that way so that later you aren't trying to migrate over to a new host. I believe there are limitations on the free sites regarding your ability to monetize your blog. I'm no expert though...There is tons out there to learn and I feel sometimes like I'm drinking from a fire hose. Haha!

Thanks for all the information!! :)

Alicia,

Welcome! I am pretty new to blogging as well. I started to blog with a friend, and we just decided to write about anything, at first we thought we will be writing and making fun of ourselves, but then something would catch our attention and we just blogged about it. I got over the fear of not publishing quickly, because I noticed that if I keep second guessing myself I will NEVER hit the publish button. So in short what is working for me is to write about everything, I will come up with a "topic" for the blog as it evolves, right now it isn't a priority.

In regards to website design, there are tons of free templates and free hosting. My top pick is wordpress. choose a template you like, to make it easier, give yourself 20 minutes to pick a design THAT IS IT. With word press you can change your design later on.

Good luck, don't stress about it too much, blogging should be fun :) And just in case here are the links to my site and social so you can check them out:

http://mumhacksforlife.com/

FB: https://www.facebook.com/mumhacksforlife
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mumhacksforlife
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/mumhacksforlife/

xoxo

Pamela

Alicia, you should stick to one niche or you'll get overwhelmed.

I see you have a love for animals and quite a bit of experience in that area. If there is a passion there, I see no reason why you shouldn't start in that niche. The animal niche pays very well. So many options available to you as a content provider.

But you'll have to find a sub-niche that's focused so that you're getting the attention of the right audience. You could focus on a certain breed of dog for example and discuss that breed and how good they are with kids, how to teach a new dog of that breed to behave, discuss health, best clothing and accessories, how choosing the right pet food for that breed is critical etc.

Focus on starting a blog in a market that is already profitable. Go where the money is. People love their pets, and if you can provide helpful information for very specific markets, you'll have an easier time gaining exposure for your blog.

You could write reviews of products (like you're already doing). There are so many affiliate and partnered programs available that you'll have an advantage. You could create videos, do interviews, create content on caring for that pet (whether it's an article about how to avoid ticks/fleas, to healthy shampoos, to pet training tips etc.)

As long as you have an interest in an area, that's what matters. That means you'll commit to writing about that topic area and build a business that will last. 

People will always love there pets. So, based on what you've said here -- your experience, I think you should start a blog on the topic of animals. I think you'll do very well.

If you need tips on where to start, you can check out my site as I think it would be helpful to you.

Janice

http://www.divineworklife.com/

Oh and Alicia, I forgot to mention...

Sure you can start with a free blog like what you're doing or the free Wordpress blog templates available. They're easy to use and once you see some momentum on your blog, you can then purchase a domain and go from there. Many bloggers have started with free blog sites and then once they built up some traction in their industry, they then began to invest and build up from there.

Best of luck!

Janice

Thank you for your helpful insight.  :)  Good luck on your venture!

It's funny you mention the animal niche because that's really what I am aiming for.  I have actually started a series of tips on getting started in the pet sitting world but have not published it yet because I want it to be complete before I do.  Once I do, I'd love to share it with you and get your opinion if you'd be okay with that. :-)

Alicia

Sounds good Alicia. Ya, keep me posted!

Janice

http://momsvitality.cmHello all! I am also new to the blogging community. And looking for fellow mothers to connect with and help each other out!

Hi fellow blogger and mama!

I would stick to one niche and find out what your really passionate about. When your passionate about something, your content will reflect that.

I do recommend Wordpress,  it's easier for Google to index and 'find.' Plus, there's a ton of free themes that you can start with. I currently host with Host9, and it costs me only a few dollars a month. I wouldn't worry about hosting at the moment though.  I purchased my domain through GoDaddy, and went through Ebates and used a promo code, my domain name cost me less that $10 for the year. 

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