At the time of writing this article, it has been roughly five years since I started my blogging journey. A lot has happened in the five years that I have been actively pursuing blogging.
This post is meant to help you get a rough idea of what to expect in your blogging journey. Several times during my blogging journey I wanted to read journeys of other bloggers to gauge if I was on the right track but there was barely any.
I want to change that narrative by putting my blogging journey out there. Regardless of where you are in the blogging journey, I believe this article will help you set your expectations right.
What to Expect in your Blogging Journey
1. Opening and Closing multiple Blogs
Many successful bloggers have had many failed blogs. When you set to start the blogging journey, be ready to open and close many blogs.
Actually, what happens most of the time is that you create a blog then abandon it after a short while. Then some time later you become serious again with blogging and decide to start a fresh blog.
This process happens for many beginner bloggers. Unless you know that this is a normal stage in the blogging journey, you can easily think you are a failure.
In my first year of blogging, I created four blogs. By the end of that year, I had abandoned all of them and wasn’t even thinking of blogging.
Three of my first four blogs were free hosted WordPress blogs. I didn’t have to pay anything so it was easy for me to abandon them.
But one of them was a self-hosted blog that I paid about $40 to set up. Unfortunately, after setting it up, I couldn’t decide what to blog about.
I tried publishing articles but I would change my mind almost every day. Eventually, I abandoned it too.
Creating and abandoning blogs went on for four years. But the difference was that I was abandoning blogs that had many articles on them and were actually making some money.
The last blog I abandoned was getting consistent readers every month, about 1500, and I was making a few dollars from it.
The blog had 30 articles on it. Incredibly, I had built that blog from scratch to that level in two months.
Even though I abandoned it, my blogging skills had developed to a point that even a failed blog in my case was better than most blogs on the internet.
2. Turning a Blog into a Business
When I started out, though I wanted to make money blogging, I viewed a blog and a business as two different entities. I treated blogging like a hobby; instead of writing blog posts that were geared towards making money, I was writing blog posts about random stuff that I thought of.
Then in my third year of blogging, I came across a blogging mentor on YouTube who insisted on writing articles that have the potential to make money.
As you would expect, I flipped into writing blog posts that were aggressively asking readers to buy stuff. I stuffed ads and affiliate links in the articles.
The excessive focus on making money with my blog annoyed my readers. After about a year I came across another mentor who advocated for articles that were genuinely geared towards helping people and making money where it makes sense.
It was at that point that I found balance in writing articles that are both helpful to readers but they could still make me money.
Instead of blogging as a hobby, I began treating my blog as a business. I started investing money into my blog. I came up with plans and targets the same way businesses do.
In your blogging journey, expect it to take time for you to find balance between being helpful to your readers while making money at the same time.
Some start with the extreme angle of making money before balancing it out with helping your readers. Others start by being helpful to their readers without making money before balancing it out with making money.
3. Settling on a Blogging Strategy
The major reason why there are many abandoned blogs in the blogging journey is because bloggers take time to settle on one blogging strategy.
Picking a blogging strategy is tough. Each blogging strategy comes with its advantages and disadvantages. For new bloggers, it is difficult to choose.
There are many factors to be considered when picking a blogging strategy. They include cost, time, longevity etc.
You have to know how much you are willing to invest in your blog, how much time you have to work on your blog, if your blogging career is a hobby or a business etc.
I began my blogging journey by creating free blogs because I thought I could make money using free blogs. But it turned out that if I wanted to make serious money with my blog, I needed a paid blog.
I could only afford money for the basic services of running a blog. I decided to go with a blogging strategy that involved little money.
That meant that I had to put many hours of work into my blog since I could not hire someone to help me out.
The many hours I put in my blog became hectic and I began questioning if that strategy was right. I felt I was doing a lot of work but getting little return.
I began investing more money into my blog to reduce my workload. Since I didn’t have a healthy budget, I could only afford to pay for minor services.
My Blog only started moving forward when I stuck to a blogging strategy I had come up with.
I understood why buying a blogging course is important. With a blogging course, you are basically buying someone’s strategy. You won’t have to think about what to do because everything is outlined for you.
Making Money in my Blogging Journey
I started blogging expecting to make money from the sixth month. From the online videos I had watched, I heard repeatedly that it takes about six months for new bloggers to start making money.
But since I had no experience at all, I made my first dollar from a blog in my third year of blogging. The money I made was from display ads.
It was in my third year of blogging that I managed to create a blog that attracted readers. The amount I earned was about $100 but it took six months for it to accumulate to that figure.
But after my first paycheck, I started getting other paychecks randomly. None of them was an impressive figure but at least they built my confidence.
I’m now in my fifth year but I haven’t started earning a full time income from my blog. Therefore, if you are a complete beginner to blogging, don’t give up if you don’t start making a full time income several years into your journey.
If you are interested in starting a blog, you can follow these five steps.
All the best!