It’s a new year, and as usual, my resolution is to blog more. Looking at this blog and past blogs I’ve owned, I’ve notice that while I usually start the year strong, my posts tend to taper off by the end of the year. Blogging with the intention to make money isn’t easy, and here are 4 reasons why:
#1 Blogging is Time Consuming
When starting a blog, everything takes time from researching a niche, picking a host, and setting up your site. When I first started this blog, it took me hours to figure out how to change the fonts and colors of my headings. This involved learning basic programming languages used by WordPress like CSS, HTML, and PHP. Fortunately, I have an engineer husband who helped me, though I’m sure he found it amusing/frustrating that I’d spend hours trying to get my code to work when all I needed was a single semi-colon. While I now feel a little more tech savvy, in the end all my word was to waste because I was still unhappy with how my website looked. Basically, I downloaded a different Wordpress theme and started fresh.
Respect for all the computer engineers and programmers out there. I would never be able to do your jobs.
Note that this all happened before even posting my blog entry. Once you start with the actual writing you’ll be spending your time researching topics and coming up with quality content that is SEO friendly so it ranks in search engine results. Then there’s driving traffic to you blog by maintaining a social media presence and interacting with other blogs.
When I first started this blog, I had wild dreams of four hour works days and finally having time to work on some hobbies and learn a second language. How naive of me! On my off days from work, I find that I’ll spend more than 8 hours working on my blog. This involves writing/researching content, updating my social media accounts, reading/commenting on other blogs in my niche, and uploading/editing photos. At the end of the day, I feel that this is still not enough time to do everything I want, and I wonder how bloggers try to balance their day jobs and personal lives with their blogs. My guess is that they don’t sleep much.
To be completely honest though, I’d happily take working 10-12 hours a day on my blog over going to my 8 hour day job.
#2 Writing Great Content Consistently is Hard
Life happens. These past few months I’ve been focusing on my day job, family, and my own personal health/well-being, all of which take large chunks of time and energy. Most days, I have been too exhausted to do anything, let alone blog. Soon days turned into weeks and into months.
Then of course there’s the issue of writing. I come up with some of my best content when I’m not only into the subject, but when I’m in the mood to write. There are times when I won’t feel like writing or have writer’s block that won’t go away for days to weeks at a time. Not good, especially when you have a blog that you should ideally be updating two to three times a week.
#3 Blogging Can Cost Money…That You May Not Get Back
While blogging is relatively low-cost compared to other business pursuits, you’re still going to have to spend some money upfront. In starting this particular blog, I only had to buy a domain name and the items I review. Other bloggers purchase hosting, WordPress themes, and custom art to use for logos. I may get there at some point, but I think I’ve spent plenty of money as it is. Looking at my Google Adsense earnings, I’ve made less than $100 since starting this blog, barely a dent in my expenditures. Fortunately, my face is currently in pretty decent shape thanks to all the Asian Beauty products I’ve purchased, so it’s worth it in that respect!
No Guarantees You’ll Make Money, or Even Get Readers
As I stated above, I’ve made less than $100 in Google Adsense earnings since starting this blog. The fact that I’ve made that much is a huge surprise for me, considering I haven’t posted any new content in the past three months!
#4 The Internet is an Unforgiving Place
Trolls are everywhere. You see them in the comments section of major news sites, social media, and blogs. While this blog has yet to be targeted by bullies, I certainly understand the feelings of pain and discouragement that come when people say less than nice things on your website.
It’s easy to spout platitudes like “Ignore the trolls” and “Sticks and stones…”, but the reality is that online harassment hurts and can take a toll on your emotional well-being.
In the coming months, my plan is to make some changes to this blog and experiment with ways to keep it fresh. Let’s see how far I can make it this year!