Developing Your Blog

In this free lesson, learn how to develop a blog of your own using goals you can set for yourself and options available online.

Defining your blog's topic

Elena's ideas for posts on her photography blogA list of ideas for posts on Elena's photography blog

One of the biggest factors in your blog's success is having a topic you find interesting. After all, blogging is something you'll be doing in your spare time, so how much you write will largely depend on how much you enjoy it. Having a topic you like will make keeping up with your blog easier and more rewarding.

One way to test whether or not you've chosen a good topic is to think of potential posts that fit that topic. You may even want to make a list, like Elena's list in the graphic on the right.

Remember, you don't have to commit to writing any of the posts that you come up with. You're just exploring your topic to see if you're interested in it enough to blog about it over the long term. If you have trouble coming up with ideas for posts, you may want to reconsider or adjust your topic.

Narrowing down your topic

If you chose to write about a broad topic, you might consider narrowing it down to a smaller one. This can help you keep focused on the topics you're most interested in. It may also make your blog stand out from other, more general blogs.

One way to narrow down your blog's focus is to think of subjects that fall within the scope of your overall topic. These subjects are potential subtopics. Are there any that particularly interest you or seem like they'd be easy to write about? You might consider focusing mainly on one or two of those subtopics.

Review the image below to see how Craig narrowed down the focus of his cooking and food blog to two narrow subtopics: recipes and cooking tips.

Narrowing down a blog's topicNarrowing down a blog's topic

Writing about multiple topics

Some people prefer to blog without limiting themselves to a few related topics. Instead, they write "lifestyle" blogs that cover a range of subjects that interest them, including their own lives. A lifestyle blogger might write about a personal experience in one post, then review products in the next.

For instance, Jessie, who started a blog about her kids, could later decide to expand her blog's focus to include other topics. She might write about her personal life, as well as her hobbies and other things she's interested in, like fashion, crafts, and community issues. She could sort her posts on various subjects into categories so readers could easily find the posts that interest them.

Blogging this way can be fun because you can regularly write about anything that comes to your mind. That said, it does have a few drawbacks. It may be more difficult for you to attract readers who don't personally know you. Also, not all of your readers will be interested in all of the subjects you write about. This can be especially true if you mix personal posts with more polarizing, controversial ones. For example, readers who enjoy Jessie's posts about her kids may be turned off or even offended by some of her posts on sensitive subjects like politics.