What is it like to run a blog?
In this insight, I will share with you my experience of running a blog. I run this website you are reading right now Arkiana.com. I will share what I find amazing and also my challenges. I hope you learn something from this. For the sake of Diana, let’s get started.
I started this blog (Arkiana.com) in May 2021 and I have since written 26 articles (As of February 26, 2022). I wanted to find a way to share my insights on programming and Electrical & Electronics Engineering. I was studying Electrical Engineering and I thought it will be amazing to share the things I have learned.
As time went by, I found myself gravitating toward programming and it’s no surprise that this blog has more programming posts than Electrical Engineering posts. I fell in love with programming along the way.
I had read about other bloggers, their incomes, and the benefits of running a blog, apart from the sheer generosity of sharing the things I have learned in programming and Engineering, I also wanted to earn any income I could from blogging 😂 lol because I heard that bloggers make money 😂 lol.
So in May of 2021, I bought a domain and hosting from Namecheap and installed WordPress, I worked on this website and published my first blog post Engineering in the Medical Field on May 11, 2021.
I was so excited, the thought of owning my own website, my own domain, and writing a post that the world could read was an experience inexpressible in words.
I was so expectant of this article I had written, I thought it was going to have views in the thousands, that it was going to be shared all over social media; lo and behold, nothing, less than nothing, no views, not even from friends or social media, nothing.
I didn’t give up, I wrote another one, then another one, and another one, nothing still. I learned my first lesson there, it’s not going to come easy.
Reality had dawned on me that it’s not just publishing content and putting it out there, there is more to do. There is keyword research, marketing, SEO, giving value, patience, and consistency.
When I first started my blog, I thought I was going to have an infinite number of topics to write about. I had just written a few posts and I was already running out of ideas lol 😂.
I didn’t know what to write about anymore, somehow, all those insights I initially had deserted me. For this reason, I didn’t write as frequently as I did initially.
This made me evaluate my purpose for running a blog, so in early 2022, I reorganized myself to do more than I have done. I changed my approach.
I initially thought that I can just blog whatever comes to mind, I had forgotten that I wanted to share insights that promote growth in programming and Engineering.
So, I decided to focus on giving value rather than blogging my random thoughts. This takes more energy and effort to write one post but it’s worth it, I even noticed a change in page views after some time of giving value.
Another thing that I thought would miraculously head north is my income from blogging. I thought I would start earning thousands of dollars just by writing a few blog posts. Well, it didn’t happen.
In my first 9 months of blogging, guess how much I had made . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $5.67, 😂 that’s right five dollars sixty-seven cents. There are some people who have made a significant amount of money with blogs as old as mine, but I failed (I am to blame, I could have done much more).
I honestly did not know the right way to blog. It was terrible 😂.
I thought a few posts on my blog will bring unimaginable recognition and attention from many internet users, but it never happened, I had forgotten that my blog is among a million blogs out there seeking your attention.
See, it’s had to get recognition when you are just a new guy in a pool of highly experienced and talented bloggers, you won’t even appear in google search.
Thankfully, with time, patience, and effort, some of my posts are able to show up on the first page of google results, thanks to you my readers.
HOW BLOGGING HAS HELPED ME
One of the best decisions I have made is to start this blogging website. Despite all the mistakes and misconceptions I had about blogging, I have found it to be one of the most enriching experiences.
I just wish I had started much earlier and that I was more consistent in my initial stages. Here are some of the things I have learned along the way:
- Self-discovery: Blogging has helped me to learn things about myself that I would not have learned otherwise. I love Electrical Engineering and that is why I chose to study it at University, but through blogging, I have learned that I enjoy software Engineering much more than Electrical Engineering. It explains why I write more on programming than Engineering.
- Business and Entrepreneurship: I have learned to treat blogging as more than just a hobby but as a business and an entrepreneurship journey. There are costs involved in running a blog, as such I must account for them. There are many blogs that have become full-fledged businesses with a high number of employees.
- Personal Growth: There is a lot of research and reading that goes into writing a post that others will find valuable. The process of researching, organizing, and presenting content has helped me to learn more about technology, marketing, engineering, psychology, and many other fields that I was not exposed to before. This has been amazing for my growth, I am able to converse broadly now more than ever.
- Consistency and Patience: Blogging has taught me to be patient and consistent even in other parts of my life. It takes time for a blog to take off and while you are waiting for it to glow, you must consistently push out valuable content. Consistency and patience are highly applicable in our lives; relationships, careers, talents, etc.
- Networking: I am an introvert and it is not easy to go out there and open up your doors to others. It is hugely uncomfortable but it is highly beneficial. As you network with people of like interests (e.g., bloggers) you will be able to get insight that was not available to you before. Right networks will help you to thrive and to know what you can give out to others.
- Side Income: I don’t earn much from this blog yet, but that $5.67 I earned in the first 9 months of blogging is a sign of what is possible if I provide more valuable content. Any small income is better than nothing😂 lol.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?
Dear reader, if you have intentions of starting a blog, make sure you understand what you are going into rather than having unrealistic expectations as I had. Count the cost, and evaluate what it’s going to take to stay motivated and focused.
Blogging is time-consuming, from topic ideation to research, SEO, marketing, monetizing, user engagement and retention, and much more. If you are not disciplined enough, you may burn out and give up (A lot of people have).
But it is interesting, blogging will help you learn things you didn’t know; it will help you grow and who knows, it may make you a millionaire lol.
If you want to get started blogging, WordPress is a great platform to start your blogging journey. You can get hosting on Namecheap or Inmotion, or any other hosting platform. Namecheap and Inmotion are great places to start and both have easy ways to install WordPress. Go ahead and start your journey.