FAQ’s for New Bloggers

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I’ve mentioned before how I get a lot of Tweets, e-mails and DMs that I don’t always have time to answer. Rather than answering each one on their own, I thought I’d make a list of the most common questions I get and give a stab at answering them.

Obviously I’m not expert. I started blogging knowing nothing and just picked things up along the way. I also like to keep up to date with the latest things in blogging, marketing and SEO. Just because I’m geeky like that.

If you have any other questions you would like answering, just shoot me a comment below and I’ll stick it my new FAQ post!

FAQ's from new bloggers

What’s DA mean?

DA stands for domain authority, which is predicts how well a site will rank in search engines on a scale of 1-100, using over 40 different calculations to compare your site with others. Most blogs tend to sit somewhere between 15-38 (from what I can see).

Domain Authority is updated every so often and you can check your DA here and check when it’s going to update next here.

Related posts:
What is domain authority? 

What’s a no-follow and do-follow link?

Getting links to you site is important in SEO (search engine optimisation). This is because the more people linking to your content, the higher you will rank in search because it’s one of the many indicators to Google that your site is trustworthy.

There are ways that people try to cheat the system, this can be things like buying do-follow links from bloggers or reviewing a product and linking back to the product page. A way to get around this is to use a no-follow link. This means that Google will not count this link when calculating search results.

There’s a lot of confusion still around when you should use do-follow and no-follow links. Generally, if you’re writing about a product off your own back that you’ve bought, or linking to other bloggers or an article, you probably want to use a do-follow link.

If you’ve received something in compensation for writing a post, either cash or product, then it’s best practice to make the link no-follow.

Please note that most SEO companies will only pay for do-follow links. This is known as black hat SEO as Google wants links to be organic, not paid for which cheats the system. You can get penalised for this and get your site removed from Google. Google is not law though, so it’s up to you if you want to take that chance

I’ve been contacted by a brand to promote their campaign, should I ask for payment?

This depends on a few things. How much experience do you have? How many page views do you get? How high is your DA? How engaged are your audience? How good are your social media stats? Are they offering something else?

In my experiences, and amongst the bloggers I know as friends, it’s very rare to get paid if you are being sent a product or something in exchange. Also if the initial e-mail suggests that they will promote your post over their social media, that’s probably what they are offering you in exchange.

If you’re a newer blogger, you might consider doing it as a way to network and get some experience of working with brands.

If you’re not, then if the post is still a good fit and good content from your blog, then sometimes it can be worth doing – especially if you’re struggling for ideas!

It doesn’t hurt to ask for payment, but unless they are clear about it in their initial email, it’s usually a no! I would just make sure you have an established blog first, because if they are paying you, they’re going to want results.

Related posts:
When to say no to blog sponsors.
Q&A with a PR.
Why you should get paid for your blog posts.

Should I move from Blogger to  Self-Hosted WordPress?

I think YES. I’m pro-Wordpress and I always prefer how WordPress themes look compared with Blogger ones. You can customise it much more than blogger due to all the plugins you can get. I wish I had moved to WordPress sooner!

If you’re thinking of Blogging for the long haul, then I think you should change. Though there are many very successful bloggers that use Blogger as their platform, I’m not a fan.

Related posts:
Why I moved from blogger to WordPress.
Top WordPress Plugins.

How do you make graphics in your post?

I use a really handy website called Canva, which has loads of pre-made templates that you can edit and customers then download. I also sometimes use photoshop and picmonkey, that’s mainly to edit photos, not create graphics.

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24 Comments

  1. March 26, 2016 / 7:37 am

    Good tips! I blog on blogger because I am a little bit scared for WordPress because I am not so technical with building a website. I don’t know nothing about html, css and other technical things.
    Darina recently posted…5 Parisian Things #3My Profile

    • Corinne
      April 10, 2016 / 11:27 am

      I’ll talk about this in my next post, but there’s no near to be fearful at all!

  2. March 26, 2016 / 8:21 am

    Very well presented. It’s so much confusion between a do follow and a no-follow link. I don’t understand why some bloggers use no-follow for other bloggers, I find it strange as it’s better for everybody to use a follow.
    Anca recently posted…10 Good thingsMy Profile

  3. March 26, 2016 / 12:57 pm

    I totally don’t agree with the WordPress issue. I see SO MANY people pushing others to move to WordPress and more recently Squarespace. There are a ton of reasons for doing so and it’s not necessarily a bad idea, but suggesting that Blogger themes are less professional/interesting/adaptable than WordPress is nonsense.

    My blog is on Blogger. It looks better than a lot of WordPress blogs I see because I know how to code, I know how to adapt my theme, I know how to change things and a lot of people just pick a WordPress free theme – THAT is what makes the difference. Not what platform you are on but how you use it and whether you’re willing to learn how to do things in order to make something look better.

    There are a ton of reasons to switch such as actually owning your own blog and not running the risk (however small) of it getting deleted. Suggesting the main reason for moving is because “it will look better” isn’t good advice.

    Not meaning to be rude but I see this advice given out A LOT online by bloggers and it’s frustrating because it simply isn’t true. You can have an amazing blog on Blogger. WordPress and Squarespace aren’t right for everyone.

    • Corinne
      March 26, 2016 / 1:43 pm

      Hey, it’s just my personal preference. Of course some people are going to prefer blogger. I’m sorry you feel frustrated that a lot of people prefer WordPress and recommend it over Blogger. Maybe that’s because a lot of people think it’s better? I think the way a blog looks important so I think I’m quite happy to keep that as one of the main reasons for moving to WordPress. Most people can’t code, so it makes perfect sense 🙂

  4. Suze
    March 26, 2016 / 3:14 pm

    Sounds like great advice – thanks! For anyone looking to go self-hosted WordPress, do you have any tips on actually choosing a host (and package) and also where to buy domain names from? I’ve been wanting to start blogging for flippin ages now and want to go down the WordPress route but I can never figure out which host to use as there are so many options and conflicting advice. I’m properly stuck before I’ve even begun and can totally see why beginners would opt for Blogger for its apparent ease. Help…..er, pretty please? 🙂

    • Corinne
      March 27, 2016 / 7:06 pm

      I didn’t look into it much, if I’m honest. I use TSO host and I’ve never had problems with it. I pay around £3 a month and host all 3 of my sites on that account. It’s easy to use and you can install WordPress with just one click. The hardest part was redirecting my domain name from my blogger account to my WordPress – but if you don’t have one already you can buy one through TSO host which is what I did with my fitness and tech blog and it was so much easier.

      But I haven’t had experience with other hosting companies so you might want to ask around before you decide!

  5. March 26, 2016 / 5:21 pm

    This is helpful even for someone like me who has been blogging for more than two year! Thank you for such an informative post, Corinne!
    Shireen L. Platt recently posted…BRAND SPOTLIGHT: GM CollinMy Profile

  6. March 27, 2016 / 7:17 pm

    SUCH helpful advice! I finally understand no follow and do follow links…yay! Pnning this for future reference. Thank you so much!

    • Corinne
      April 10, 2016 / 11:29 am

      Hey Kezzie, it’s because you don’t have your own domain so it takes blogspots DA. You need your own to get a proper reading!

  7. April 1, 2016 / 12:38 am

    These are great tips! I’ve always been on wordpress, but even just going from .com to .org on there makes a huge difference! I’m glad it’s where I started! I think blogger is better than the basic wordpress because it really is basic, but I’m with you in thinking that self-hosted wordpress beats blogger.
    Katie recently posted…Life in March ’16My Profile

  8. April 4, 2016 / 12:05 am

    I hadn’t checked my domain authority until now and at 14 I definitley have progress to make! It’ll be great to see how I get on in the future! Thanks for the post! x

  9. April 7, 2016 / 12:07 pm

    Some really helpful tips here, things I wish I had picked up on when I was a new blogger so I could have made a few decisions sooner rather than later!

  10. May 24, 2016 / 10:09 pm

    Canva is my life! Also, I never really understood the do follow link thing. It’s so confusing.

  11. May 26, 2016 / 10:09 am

    I have moved to self hosted and I was worried about my old domain rank! I just discovered what does DA mean from your post. I checked my old domain and the Authority was pretty impressive! Which makes me HAVE to do the same work for my new domain! Thank you very much xx

  12. July 2, 2016 / 9:15 pm

    Thanks a lot, I realized my blog was set to private! So much to learn about SEO and such… All 15 of my views apparently come from Google?

  13. October 8, 2016 / 4:12 am

    I wish I’d read a post like this when I first started out three years ago. I made so many mistakes and only recently just moved my site to self hosted. Wish I’d done it sooner! Xx
    Tamsin | Eco Fluffy Mama recently posted…What Are Cloth Sanitary Pads?My Profile

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