This post may contain affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please see our full disclosure for further information. If not otherwise stated, all prices are intended in US$.
Tinylovebug has recently been nominated for the Blogger Recognition Award by Lexi from THE GIRL ON THE T. I’m super excited for the nomination and even more so because it comes from Lexi who is a professional writer (she will love me for mentioning this) and runs an incredibly awesome blog! Her tagline this girl walks into a bar and asks, “what’s the wifi password?” makes me smile every single time I visit her blog. It’s something that I personally do (especially when overseas) so it totally resonates with me. Her blog is amazing and you should definitely check it out if you haven’t already.
Update: Tinylovebug has been also nominated by another awesome blogger: Jassmine from DIY MOGUL. Her blog, which focuses on DIY projects, work as a freelancer and blogging, is stunning and full of great content! I strongly recommend you check it out!
According to the Blogger Recognition Award rules, once you accept the award, there are a few steps to follow:
- Thank the nominating blogger
- Write a post about the award
- Share a story of how and why you started your blog
- Offer at least two pieces of advice for new bloggers
- Pass on the nomination to another 15 bloggers
- Respond to the nominating blogger with a link to this post on their blog
So, first of all, thank you, Lexi and Jassmine for the nomination. You rock, girls!
Table of Contents
Sharing a story: how and why I started this blog
As to the story on how and why I started this blog, I don’t know how interested you may be in the details, but here we go.
I used to work as an International Lawyer and University Lecturer/Researcher for a few years after graduating. I was writing, traveling and living in different countries, which perfectly suited my lifestyle of a single 20-something-year-old. I had so much fun, have fond memories of that time and if I could, I would do it all over again. At some point, though, I realised a couple of things weren’t making me completely happy.
Firstly, the only Law I had ever been truly interested in was Jude, and even at conferences or work dinners, I would end up talking about pop culture, love and relationships. Secondly, when I met my Aussie husband in London, I felt I wanted to settle in just one city and spend as much time as possible with him.
So, a few years ago I moved to Melbourne and made the transition into a different career. I now work as a Manager, still doing legal stuff though. Although I love my current job and especially my fantastic team, I was kind of missing a creative outlet. I’ve always been passionate about human interactions and love life matters, so in the back of my head, there’s always been the idea of starting a blog on this topic.
However, it was only recently that I said it out loud. It was in a conversation with my brother who was visiting me here in Melbourne. He absolutely loved the idea, and he didn’t encourage me, he literally pushed and forced me to do it! Even though he is my younger brother, he’s always had a huge influence on my life choices, so I went with the flow.
When I discussed it with my husband and he wasn’t only very supportive as usual, but completely and fully embraced the project, I knew I had to do it!
As I wanted the blog to focus on life and relationships, in order to provide real insights to potential readers, I felt that rather than just my point of view as a married woman in her thirties, it was worth offering different perspectives in terms of gender, age, life experience and relationship status.
That’s why I first thought of asking Emma and Marina to join me in this adventure. Their enthusiasm, excitement and extreme support gave me the motivation and drive to make it finally happen. I then got other awesome contributors involved, and here we are!
Celebrating success: second month of blogging and about 10K page views in the last 30 days
This blog has been live for two months now, and in the last 30 days, we had about 10K page views! Being my first time blogging, I have no much to compare, but I have been told by much more experienced bloggers and even famous ones that this amount of traffic is incredible for a new blog, so I would like to take this opportunity to thank
- Emma, Marina, Mr Blunt, E-Jay and the other freelancers for their amazing and entertaining content and invaluable contribution. This blog wouldn’t exist and I wouldn’t be writing this today if it wasn’t for them.
- Our readers and followers for their support and engagement. They’re the absolute best!
- The community of fellow bloggers who have supported Tinylovebug and are a true inspiration to me. I’m grateful for the tips they have shared and the tricks I have learned from them.
Giving back to the community: some advice to new bloggers
As a total newbie to blogging, I don’t think I have much to offer in terms of advice to new bloggers. It’s been a learning curve for me and I still have so much to learn and improve on. What I can do is sharing a few thoughts on what worked for me so far and might have helped with going from less than 1K page views in the first month to about 10K page views in the second month of blogging.
However, as you may have noticed I’m one of those long-winded people; I really can’t refrain myself from talking at length about any given subject-matter. But, to me, the main purpose of this post is to share with you 15 blogs that I think you should absolutely check out, and I don’t want to detract from that. At the same time, I have learned so much from other bloggers in the last few weeks that I do feel the urge to give back to the community in my own small way. If even just one of my tips could help even just one new blogger, I would be happy.
So, I have published a separate full-length post with screenshots and quite a few practical tips to new bloggers, and I will give here just some quick advice.
I’m a firm believer in the value of organic traffic. I think that the quality of the traffic you drive to your blog is way more important than the quantity, so you should aim to target an audience that is engaged and truly interested in your content. In order to achieve this, all my efforts of these first two months went to search engine optimisation (SEO) and Pinterest which has its own in-built search engine.
If you are on WordPress, you should absolutely add the Yoast SEO plug in which assists with optimising your content. I have never used it myself because I’m on Squarespace, but every blogger on WordPress swears by it. And to be honest, by reading the reviews on this plug in and learning about its capabilities and functionalities, I got quite jealous that it’s only available for WordPress and a similar plug in doesn’t exist for Squarespace.
If you’re on Squarespace like I am, work on your SEO anyway. I took the time to make sure my website would show up as the first result for tinylovebug (and its variations) searches and to make my posts SEO compliant. It took me a while to figure out how to do that on Squarespace without a plug in but I have finally cracked the code! If you’re interested in learning how to do it, I may write a post about it soon so keep an eye on this blog in the next days. In the meantime, you can grab a free checklist I created to help you optimise your on-page SEO and rank higher in Google. So, if you’re after organic traffic, this checklist is a must have!
If you’re not on WordPress.org or Squarespace, but you take blogging seriously and you’re even thinking of monetising your blog, you must get your own domain
now yesterday! In the meantime, you can grab a free checklist I created to help you optimise your on-page SEO, and therefore rank higher in Google and drive organic traffic to your blog.
I really made an effort to improve my Pinterest strategy. I made a business profile and worked on the branding. I started pinning a lot more by scheduling pins via Tailwind. Since I started using Tailwind, my Pinterest monthly viewers skyrocketed to 63,200 with an increase by + 339%. Not too shabby! So, I definitely recommend using Tailwind. They have a free trial, so you can try it for yourself. I’m sure you will love it!
If you’re thinking of monetising your blog and you’re looking at affiliate programs, I definitely recommend Skimlinks. I have researched many affiliate programs and initially even joined a few, but Skimlinks is hands down the best program. There are so many advantages in joining Skimilinks that for me it’s a dream come true. The best benefit is that by signing up to Skimlinks you will instantly have access and earn revenue from over 20,000 affiliate merchants including Amazon and eBay. And their minimum payout threshold is only $10. Yes, that’s right, only ten dollars!
If you want to give Skimlink a try, you can sign up here. It’s totally FREE and trust me, you will love it!
4) Email list
You may be new to blogging, but I’m sure you will have heard how important is to build your subscriber list from the start hundreds of times. Build you list is repeated as mantra by any blogger or entrepreneur. And I’m actually starting to realise the importance to have my own list and therefore a direct channel to communicate with my most loyal readers.
What helped me begin building my list is Mailerlite. (You can actually see it in action above!). I had tried other email marketing software but they didn’t work for me. Mailerlite is my favourite and I would absolutely recommend to anyone because it offers all capabilities of a premium service (newsletter forms for both website and social media, pop up forms, landing pages, personalised email automation, customised design, RSS feed campaigns, double opt-in switch on/off, A/B slip campaigns, and the list goes on) but it’s forever FREE up to 1,000 subscribers! So, what’s not to like about it?
I would absolutely recommend signing up for Mailerlite. You will see yourself how great it is! And it’s completely FREE!
Other things I use and love: Facebook comment plug in with mirroring feature, Squarespace, Google Analytics, Google Console, Google AdSense, Shareaholic, Canva , Pixabay, Headline Analyzer, Tiny Pic, Tiny PNG, IMGBB.
Things I have tried but weren’t for me : Disqus, MailChimp, SumoMe, Propeller Ads, Infolinks, Multilingualizer.
But now, let’s dive in to the best part!
Passing on the nomination: 15 awesome blogs deserving recognition
Here is a list of 15 amazing blogs I have found around the web. Check them out!
Topic: life, relationships, photography & more
I love everything about this blog. From Carissa’s play on words (Mrs, single, missing link and her last name Link) in the logo and name of the blog, to the professional look and neat design of the website through the amazing and insightful content, everything is just perfect. A must read for sure!
NIFTY 50 AND FABULOUS
Topic: fashion, beauty, lifestyle & more
This blog and its owner are the living proof that you can be fabulous and have a full and fun life at any age or stage of life. I particularly enjoy the perfect dose of wit sprinkled throughout the website.
Topic: parenting, personal development, health & fitness
Kim writes about the joys of living a messy but beautiful life which totally resonates with me. The blog focuses on parenting, personal development, health and fitness in an informative, mature and meaningful but still fun and entertaining way.
Topic: personal blog & lifestyle
I’m totally in love with Samantha’s writing and her posts always give me a good laugh. I look forward to reading her new post every Sunday!
Topic: love & dating
This blog is an honest account of dating and love in this modern times. An absolute must read for all of us interested in love life matters.
Topic: travel & dance
There is something magical about this blog. The pictures in her Badass Bookstores post prove these bookstores are badass for real! I had a quite severe FOMO attack!
GIRL ABOUT HOUSE
Topic: interior design
Beautiful. Beautiful website, beautiful pictures, beautiful interior design. Beautiful, just beautiful.
Topic: digital content marketing
I like this blog for its professional look and the thorough and extremely informative nature of its posts. Such a great content!
I love the pun in the name of this blog, plus it’s jam-packed with useful tips and practical advice. Surely worth reading!
Topic: lifestyle, fashion & more
In all that pink in the blogosphere, what a breath of fresh air this blog is. So much character, I love it!
Topic: travel, personal journal & blogging
I can’t believe Grace is only 16 years old. Her blog, her writing, her pictures are definitely not what would you expect from the average teen. I’m amazed!
Topic: lifestyle & business
Christoph is a male blogger in a female dominated blogging scene and like me, is not a native English speaker. His blog is awesome and is doing great! So kudos to him!
Topic: Life, DIY, pets & more
How can you not like this blog? Every time a picture of her dog Jack shows up on my screen an internal Awwww starts!
Topic: food & healthy living
A food blog for a change. A very nice design and plenty of yummy recipes. Her dishes look delish!
Who wouldn’t want to follow the adventures of a self-proclaimed dating-disaster guru? If you’re going through a break-up you will find plenty of useful advice on this blog.
Hope you enjoy reading these blogs!
Thanks so much again to Lexi from The Girl on the T and Jassmine from DIY Mogul for nominating Tinylovebug for this award.