Recently, someone asked me "Why do you need a blog?" I'm assuming that the intent behind this question was to understand why do people make blogs in general. Upon thinking about this further, I was able to identify a lot of benefits of blogging that I've only realized after having blogged for more than 6 months. So, in this post, I will try to share my journey and the reasons which kept me going.
How I Started Blogging..
Initially, I used to write on Quora. For about 1-1.5 years, I continued writing answers on specific niche topics of my liking. Slowly, a certain kind of users started reading the answers and a sort of cult developed.
At that time, I also had the message option enabled on Quora, so I regularly replied to messages which often pertained to the topics I used to write about.
However, the Quora interface started creating some troubles and it was becoming increasingly difficult to stick to the platform for one-on-one conversations. That's when I started a Facebook page called Non-Engineers.
Facebook acted as a good enough means to interact with the users. I didn't post a lot on the timeline, except on some occasions when I felt the users needed generic help.
After about 4-6 months of operating the Facebook page, I got a suggestion from one of the users, who is still a reader of my first blog :)
He suggested me to convert the page into a blog so that it is easy to find the existing posts.
His idea sounded logical. But, I didn't think much about it and hence didn't act on it immediately. Then, one day, I was looking to do something new and that's when I decided to take up this endeavour.
What were the initial thoughts..
To be very honest, I didn't know anything about blogging back then. All I knew was that many of my Quora answers were long enough to be directly converted into blog posts.
So, I started transferring all my Quora answers in the first month of blogging, there were 70+ posts I guess.
At that time, my only intent was to create a space where users could easily navigate through the posts, find similar posts, etc.
Why I started learning SEO..
This is my personal belief that when you want to do something larger than yourself, you need to have an internal motive, else, you will quit midway. It's not easy to help others without expecting anything in return, actually at some level, everyone expects a return - some in the form of money, others in the form of respect, prestige - only the kind of return differs.
After transferring the posts, I realized that a lot of users started reading the blog. The numbers were increasing and it inspired me to write more often.
I believe it is due to the consistency of writing that I was able to cross the legitimacy point of blogging.
This is one of the biggest reasons why my blog posts got featured on Google Discover at a very initial stage.
In order to bring more and more posts on Discover, I started learning SEO and made it my internal motive.
So, why do I blog now..
I believe blogging has brought a lot of positivism to my life and I would love to list some benefits of writing a blog and these are also the reasons I believe everyone should blog:
Benefits of Blogging:
Brings Clarity - I feel writing helps me clear my mind. It helps me structure my thoughts better.
Keeps you Busy - It is actually important to stay occupied during the day, especially during times like these when you're in a lockdown.
Nurtures Hobby - I've often seen people blog about their hobbies, this is a good way to stay connected to what you like.
Connects with People - I've found a beautiful community online. Sometimes I even share my problems with them and it feels good to have people around :)
Helps you Grow - You pick a lot of skills on the way by blogging, e.g. writing, marketing, etc.
Helps Discover Yourself - You might even get to know things about yourself that you didn't know earlier, just by feedback and introspection.
Gives a Meaning - When you do something larger than yourself, you help others, you get a stronger purpose for your life.
Feels like an Entrepreneur - Your blog is your own startup. You are the CEO and you're solely responsible to take all the decisions, it's actually a lot of fun.
Helps you Earn - Undeniably, one can also earn from a blog. I earn about INR 3,000 per month from blogging. You can spend, invest, donate that amount.
Keeps you Going - Like business, when you're thinking of increasing the reach of your blog and you take up different initiatives, it feels great.
So, these are a couple of reasons why I like to blog and why you should blog too. I believe 2020 is actually a blessing in disguise for anyone to start a blog.
If you're just starting out to explore this as a hobby, I'd suggest start a free blog.
Happy Blogging :)