My Thoughts on Blogging These Days

I’m having a love-hate relationship with blogging right now.

Don’t get me wrong β€” I’m still absolutely in love with my blog and I won’t ever abandon it come high or low but I find it hard to start writing these days. I don’t have writer’s block as I know exactly what I want to post since I have my blog posts planned until mid-March but there’s a lot going on in my mind right now and I have stuff that I have to settle first for university.

The point of this post is not to rant about my difficulties in writing but rather about the future of my blog. I have been blogging for almost 9 years and throughout the years I’ve never given much thought about the direction I wanted to take my blog to. I took blogging more seriously when I started blogging again February last year and have gotten even more serious when I took the plunge and went self-hosted.

blogging

Beauty Blogging

For the past month, I have come to realise that I am losing interest in beauty blogging. I still love makeup and skincare and just about any beauty-related bits and bobs but I don’t feel as excited to blog about it as I did before. In my opinion, beauty blogging is not for me as I don’t buy newly-released makeup nor do I wear a lot of makeup on day-to-day basis. I will blog about beauty that are related to me and how I use my makeup but I won’t try to fit into current trend and blog about new products on the market. I prefer minimal, healthy, and dewy makeup that enhances my face as oppose to contouring/baking/bronzing thingamajig and there’s only so much minimal makeup look you can blog about.

Advertisements/Affiliate Links/Sponsored Contents

I absolutely have no problems with blogs that put up ad banners as I always have AdBlocker on and I don’t see ads on any blog at all. The only reason why I don’t have ad banners on my blog is purely because of aesthetic purpose. I spent a heck of a lot time editing my theme and forking out hundreds of ringgit on it so I don’t want to ruin my blog aesthetic with ads. Y’all know how obsessed I am with blog aesthetic so this won’t come as news to you, am I right?

Ever since I migrated to WordPress, I have been getting a lot of emails from brands and affiliate companies asking me if I would like to join their affiliate program. I did join their program and one of the things you can do with it is write a blog post about their ongoing campaigns and you can put your affiliate links and when people click on it and buy the products using your links, you will get a small commission from it. To be honest, the more I let my blog to be a place where I make money, the less enthusiastic I feel about it.

Maybe I’m not used to all of these as I have never made money from blogging before April 2016. I’m okay with doing sponsored contents because it’s good for my blog reputation to have brands collaborating with me and honestly the money I make from one-time collaboration is more than having 1000 people clicking my ad banner for 3 months. I only needed the money I make from my blog to renew my WordPress hosting, that’s it β€” so having one sponsored content per year is fine by me. If I don’t have any at all, that’s okay too. I can save up my duit raya to pay for hosting. Soz.

Malaysian bloggers are guilty of shilling multiple skincare products in a matter of a week! I get it, you’re given free products or are paid to write a review about it but shilling two different skincare brands in a week? A week?! Please don’t make it obvious that you are paid to write them. Once, I unfollowed a blog ’cause she hasn’t updated in months and then suddenly there were new multiple skincare reviews on her blog in like, 5 days. I get it if you’re paid to advertise a service, but advertising many skincare products around the same time is just a whole new level of shilling. Please stop.

(Disclaimer: you may have different opinion from me and if you’re thinking of leaving less-than-nice comments, just remember that it’s my blog and this is one of the times where I don’t care about your [not-very-nice] opinion.)

 

Going Self-Hosted

I had to write about this before some of you make the biggest mistake of your blogging life. I know for a fact that seeing other people going self-hosted makes you want to take the plunge too but here’s an advice β€” don’t do it ’cause you see other people are doing it. I know that hosting in Malaysia is very cheap at 60 ringgit per year but don’t make it as an excuse to migrate ’cause self-hosting your blog comes with a price and I don’t mean in ringgit.

I wanted to go self-hosted since I was 15, maybe 16 but I was still a high school student who blogged about Simple template tutorials and what do I need a self-hosted blog for? I didn’t blog professionally and I’m sure as hell didn’t write as good as I do now. Yes, WordPress is awesome β€” I can’t deny that but do you really need to go self-hosted or are you just jealous of people who did?

To bloggers who put up content 5 times a year, I definitely do not recommend going self-hosted. Why? Self-hosted WordPress is not Blogger.com where you can just leave for months when you don’t feel like blogging. I take bloggers who rarely put up contents as people who are not serious in blogging. Yes, you have a blog, but you’re not serious so what’s the point of paying for hosting a blog? You do know that if you lost interest in blogging and didn’t renew your hosting, you will lose everything forever, right?

I recommend going self-hosted if you’re serious about blogging, you want to make some money from your blog, you want to blog professionally, you want to blog more often and write more interesting contents, and you want to make your blog better in general. You also need to remember that just because you have a WordPress blog, does not mean that your blog is better than any Blogger blog out there. Self-hosted WordPress blog with a shitty, once a month content will get you no where. It takes a lot of effort and self-hosting is not the be-all and end-all.

I also don’t recommend self-hosting if investing money on your blog is something that you have never done before or you’re just straight up stingy (kedekut tahi hidung masin). You’ve never paid for a cheap premade template or you haven’t bought a domain name for your blog even after years and years of blogging ’cause you’re not willing to spend on your blog? How are you going to pay minimum 60 ringgit per year (every year!) for hosting and 200 ringgit for a new theme?

Yes, you can use one of the heaps amount of free themes available but in my opinion, it’s better to have a Blogger blog with paid template than a fancy shmancy self-hosted blog with free theme. Free WordPress themes are not like free Blogger templates. You can still use a free Blogger template and be happy with it for months but free WordPress themes are a different case. The features are very limited and seeing other WordPress blogs with fancy paid themes and cool features will make you cry at your bank balance. Free themes are okay if you just migrated but you will have to pay for a paid one eventually.

 

Blog Stats

I used to think that the number of your followers is important. I still think it is but how many followers I have is of no importance anymore. Of course I notice every single follower I gain or every 100-follower milestone I reach but I don’t judge my blog and its progress by the number of followers. There are people out there who buy Bloglovin’ followers so I kinda feel like no number is true anymore.

To me, pageviews are important but like the number of followers, I try not to think much about it and just enjoy blogging. Of course I’ll be happy if I can reach 1,000 pageviews a day but if I don’t, I’m not going to be disheartened and stress out because of it. I noticed that whenever I’m not in my blogging mood and I put up content that I didn’t put my all in it, my pageviews drop. When I’m in my blogging mood and are all excited when writing contents, my pageviews are doing good! It’s weird how my blog progress is depending on my mood.

Unlike followers and pageviews, engagements are so important for blogs. I don’t know about you but I need at least one comment on my newest post so I can feel better. Not 10, not 5, at least one comment then I’ll be happy about my post. Some people are too lazy to leave comments especially me. I read so many posts but I suck at leaving comments. I will do better next time, I promise.

What I thought was my thoughts on blogging has turned into a ranting fiasco. These are just my opinion on blogging and please take it with a grain of salt. Take what you need and leave out what you don’t. It’s as simple as that. πŸ™‚

Share:
  • Lenne Zulkiflly

    PREACH IT GURLLL. ahhh this explains why i didn’t put up any new contents on my blog. you’re such a mind reader haha. love this! xx

    • hhehehe thank you Lenne! life comes first before blogging kan xxx

  • Alya Farhanah Mohd Tarmizee

    For the sake of getting at least one comment, I volunteer to contribute! Lol but I do understand where you’re coming from. I wanted to get my own domain but after 3 years of studying, I saw that my interest in writing (and blogging too) dropped tremendously because of other obligations. Soooo, glad I didn’t agree to get my own domain. Kalau tak, bazir je

    • lol thank you Alya hahahaha. betul tu, because you have to pay for domain every year jugak so if you’re not into writing/blogging sangat, better tak perlu πŸ™‚

  • I agree with everything. I have long gone out of the `I want more followers` phase and it definitely feel better when people commented on your post.

    On a side note, I plan to take blogging more seriously starting from this year and your posts have been so much help to me (I knew nothing about wordpress, all those plug in and seo things made me dizzy lol)

    • so true! glad my posts could help you, Rasya xx

  • great post bebs !! I totally get what you mean about self-hosting and the followers etc. Inshallah, you’ll find the passion for blogging again.. I’ll still be here supporting you either way xox

    • thank you so much Michaela! in shaa Allah i’ll get back my blogging mojo someday xx

  • I agree with all your points. I’ve once thought about going self-hosted as well, but I’m not ready yet to change as I worry I can’t afford to give full commitment on my blog since I’m a broke jobless now. Hahaha.

    • so true! once you go self-hosted, you can’t go back unless you’re willing to start all over again. migrating to wordpress is already a tedious process xx

  • This is such a lovely post – I love seeing what other people think about blogging, it’s evolved so much however I do feel like a lot of people are involved just for the money, the products and all the pro’s without realising about the cons.

    Great post and look forward to seeing more from you.

    Layla x
    http://www.sprinklesofstyle.co.uk

    • thank you! once you started blogging for money, it won’t feel genuine anymore and i’m kinda mehh on bloggers who are always shilling products. xx

  • even a comment on our entry is a bless lol, cannot deny :DD

  • It’s nice to find you are still interested in blogging as sometimes I stopped by to read one or two articles from your blog. It’s like I’m doing a ‘say Hi with an old friend.” Haha okay I know I’m absurdly absurd.

    It’s because I have no any interest with blogging anymore hence I set all my blogs private and choose Tumblr instead.

    Keep healthy, Erin.

  • awww thank you Eyqa, you too xx

  • Siqah Hussin

    Life comes first. Blogging number two πŸ™‚ You just having the same thoughts with me especially on pageviews, followers. and engagement. I care more about PV and engagement. Kalau followers, emm i really hope to have more loyal readers.

    PV. Emm tak dinafikan, siqah agak down if tengok PV tak banyak tiap hari. Really happy kalau tengok PV lebih seribu tapi apakan daya, nowadays, my PV drop sangat πŸ™

    Setiap entri, ada sikit komen pun jadilah. Tak dinafikan πŸ˜€

    Keep blogging erin πŸ™‚

    • nadiah izzaty

      keep blogging too , Siqah . I visit your blog yank , There’s lot of people leave comments at your page if to be compare from mine . hihii….=) …

    • betul tu! followers ramai tapi loyal readers takde, tak best jugak kan siqah.

      bila time time takde mood blogging, pageviews memang sendu πŸ™

      macam erin cakap, satu komen pun jadi lah haha. thank you siqah! x

  • nadiah izzaty

    ” I noticed that whenever I’m not in my blogging mood and I put up content that I didn’t put my all in it, my pageviews drop. When I’m in my blogging mood and are all excited when writing contents, my pageviews are doing good! It’s weird how my blog progress is depending on my mood”. >>> this one I could agree with it. I usually will monitor all my previous post . There are some post reach more than 1000 viewers and some not even reach 300 viewers . So , I guess it is really related with ” blogging mood ” . hihihi

    I would feel really happy and grateful even there are one comment I get in each of my blog post. At least I know there are someone really read my post . hihihi . That’s what I feel .

    keep on blogging dear even nowadays I rarely to visit your page like I used to do before… time constraint . Please forgive me =(

    • haa betul kan nadia! when ada mood blogging baru la pageviews pun naik, tak tahu la apa kaitan dia hahah. erin selalu lupa nak komen kt post orang. baca je semua, tapi kadang kadang lupa. nanti nak kena dedicate one day la untuk go through balik recent posts dekat blogger dashboard and komen each one. hihi.

      ala takpe nadia. nadia kan busy balik lambat. kerja lagi penting hehe πŸ™‚

      • nadiah izzaty

        Banyaknyaaaa entry baru2… hi erin aa nadia tak blogwalking sini =(

  • What do you mean by shilling???

    • shilling means they’re promoting and giving it positive reviews ’cause they’re paid to do it instead of being honest. ala like most youtubers nowadays. kena sponsor, they promote kaw kaw.

  • Agree with all the points you stated. Saya ada blog sebelum ni and I really love writing tapi bila takde org komen langsung kan blog, benda tu jadi macam tak best so I deleted the blog. But now, I put up the courage and finally making a comeback because I really love to write and share. Your blog posts are really inspiring. Macam mana you come up with some thing to write? Saya selalu stuck dgn writer-block.. Hahahaha. Apa2 pun teruskan berblogging sbb sumpah best blog ni (walaupun saya baru jumpa. kenapa lah tak jumpa lebih awal”

    • Ok faham pasal komen tu. Rasa macam uninspired kan kalau takde orang komen post kita. Aww thank you Deeyan! How I come up with things to write? well, banyakkan baca blog orang lain and get inspired, cari list of blog post ideas and write down posts yang you feel like writing on a notebook, maybe boleh cerita pasal life/personal posts yang interesting, and brainstorm ideas. what’s your blog niche and what do you always write about? haa boleh brainstorm new ideas drpd situ. thank you so so much Deeyan! xx

  • Ela

    I never stress out about my follower count if only because I know that a handful of people read my blog on a regular basis. It’s a small handful, but I like loyal readers nonetheless πŸ™‚
    Ela | http://www.stealingyoursunbeams.wordpress.com

    • i like loyal readers too. i hope i can have more loyal readers in the future who appreciate my writings xx