It’s hard to believe – Yummy Lil’ Things turns 6 months old today! What started as a “hmmmm…maybe I’ll start my own blog one day” turned into a real, live website that brings all of you delicious easy-to-make recipes, cool things to see and do in Charleston, useful beauty and travel tips, along with other yummy things. It has been an amazing experience, and here’s what I learned after 6 months of blogging.
What I Learned About YOU!
You like a variety of foods and recipes. If we look at the three most popular posts since April, food posts are at the top of the list. But, they’re a mix of recipes and where to GET food. These are the three most popular, in order:
- Callies Hot Little Biscuit: A Charleston Favorite
- Delicious Homemade Cinnamon Rolls From Scratch
- Sausage Balls: The Perfect Appetizer for the Big Game
You also like strange things. So, this one took me by surprise – A LOT of people read the Bacon and Cheese Crickets…and Other Weird Treats post. And, my most popular post on Facebook is a video of “pimple cupcakes”. Yup, it’s just like it sounds. A guy squeezing buttercream frosting out of a cupcake that looks like a nasty pimple and the frosting oozes everywhere. It’s delightfully disgusting.
You are a loyal bunch. I’m so grateful to have readers that keep coming back post after post! You all are the reason I keep going, and I love it when you leave comments or even *gasp* send me an email. I return all of my messages. I do, I really do. And, I love mail. Postal or electronic, it doesn’t matter. Most of all, I want to hear about what keeps you coming back, and what you want to see more of in the future. If you haven’t subscribed to my newsletter, be sure to do that. There is a form in the sidebar and at the bottom of this post. You’ll get the latest posts delivered to your inbox.
What I Learned About Blogging
Blogging isn’t for sissies. My grandmother said that about growing old, but it also applies to blogging. She was a smart cookie (Haha, get it? Food humor! I’m a dork.). Like I mentioned in my post when I won my Blogger Recognition Award – blogging is hard. It’s non-linear. There are a lot of ups and downs. And it takes a lot of work. Some days you’ll get good traffic and other days, not so much. It takes RESILIENCE to be a blogger. You have to show up every day, even when you may not feel like it.
It can be overwhelming in the beginning – but don’t let that scare you. There is A LOT to learn when you’re starting out. Do I use WordPress or Wix? What self-hosting company is the best and do I need one? What theme should I use? How do I get traffic? What the hell is SEO and why does it matter? All questions beginner bloggers face, but you’ll figure it out and you can do it. A suggestion I have is to reach out to other bloggers in your niche and see how they do it. Many times, your favorite sites will have a section dedicated to blogging. Or, just reach out to them and ask questions! The good bloggers will reply back to you.
You’ll become a social media expert. You can write the most information-rich post, or create the tastiest recipe on the planet, but no one will know about it unless you promote it. I would say I spend about 60% of my time promoting Yummy Lil’ Things. Facebook. Pinterest. Twitter. Instagram. StumbleUpon. Those are the main social media channels I use to get the word out. One piece of advice for new bloggers. As you get started, use your analytics to figure out which platforms are driving the most traffic to your site and focus on your top 3. Otherwise, you can get really overwhelmed and waste a lot of time if you try and master ALL platforms at the same time.
Write consistently. After I had been blogging for about 4 months, I started to get a little frustrated. Why weren’t there more people coming to my site? Then I looked at how many times I posted articles to the site…and there was part of my answer. The number of times I posted had decreased since I started. To get a loyal following, you need to give them a reason to keep coming back – like new posts! Sounds like a no-brainer, but I lost sight of that for a while (see the overwhelming comment above). Now I try to write a new post at a minimum once a week.
There you have it! My pearls of wisdom about my blogging journey. So you may be asking yourself…Tanya, why do YOU keep blogging? The answer is simple…I love it. It’s my passion. It brings all of the things I get jazzed about together in one place – eating, drinking, exploring Charleston, sharing what I learn and discover with you, writing, marketing, photography, and website work. It’s all wrapped up in Yummy Lil’ Things.
Now, I want to hear from YOU! What do you want to see more of in the next 6 months? Drop your suggestions in the comments – I’d love to hear from you!