2018 was my first full year of blogging! To celebrate, I’m taking a look back at this inaugural year and joining Gopetfriendly.com’s Pet Blogger Challenge. It’s so easy to focus on what you didn’t accomplish, and to harp on what you’ve yet to do, but amidst the ups and downs of blogging it’s important to focus on all of the good too. Read below as I reflect on 2018.
For those who may be visiting your blog for the first time, how long have you been blogging and what is your main topic?
I’ve been blogging for 1.5 years. I blog about pet travel, pugs and dog-friendly things to do in New York City. I travel frequently with my two dogs, Boogie (a pug) and Marcelo (a chihuahua) and I include a good mix of travel tips, pet friendly activities, and personal stories.
What was your proudest blogging moment of 2018?
2018 is when I got serious about my blog. I attended BlogPaws, worked on the design and layout, and began learning about things like SEO. There are so many moving parts when it comes to blogging, and there is always something new to learn. I’m proud of myself for tackling these challenges with an open mind, and continuing to move forward.
What was the biggest blogging challenge you faced in 2018, and how did/will you tackle it?
Since there are so many facets to blogging, it was hard for me to decide where to focus my attention, what to learn, and what to start implementing. I had to learn SEO, begin researching keywords and work on my blog’s design, and also grow my mailing list and tackle Pinterest. The list goes on and on and often seems endless.
On top of that, there are so many people selling workshops and courses to teach others how to grow their blog. I am sometimes overwhelmed by the sheer number of bloggers teaching people to blog successfully. Their marketing is enticing, but if I bought all of these programs I’d go broke.
This year, I plan to be more organized. I’m going to write a list of things I hope to tackle, and try to focus on one thing at a time. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Which of your 2018 blog posts was your favorite and why? (Please include a link.)
I really enjoyed writing content about New York City, especially creating the dog-friendly NYC bar crawl. My dogs are a big part of my life, and I was born and raised in NYC. I love showing people that having a dog in this city is great, and that they can incorporate their dogs into their daily lives in new and fun ways.
Which of your 2018 posts was most popular with your audience? Why do you think it does so well?
My most popular post was 10 Free Things to Do in NYC With Your Dog. I think it did so well because people are always looking for ways to incorporate their dogs into their lives, and they don’t want to go broke doing so. New York City is one of the most expensive cities in the world, but there are many options for dog-friendly activities that won’t cost you a dime.
Did you implement a new series, feature, or practice on your blog in 2018 that you’re enjoying?
I was able to reorganize my blog and divide all of my blog posts into easy-to-navigate sections. I think it will be helpful to readers, since everyone is always at a different stage when it comes to traveling. Some might be looking for inspiration, while others want to learn how to save or plan. I am trying to tackle everything under the umbrella of pet travel. Even if you’re not traveling internationally or taking big trips, you can always enjoy local adventures.
As the social media landscape changes, how are you promoting your blog posts and connecting with new readers?
Looking forward to 2019, if you accomplish only one thing through your blog, what do you hope it is?
My biggest goal is to reach 25k sessions per month so that I’m able to join Mediavine. I’m still a ways away, but it’s definitely the light at the end of the tunnel for me.
I’d also like to share more personal stories. Lots of people think of their pet as a burden when it comes to travel, and I want to share stories that show people that it’s quite the opposite. Pets enrich our lives so much, and I’ve learned and experienced so much from mine while traveling. Of course, you have to adjust a few things if you’re going to bring them on the road, but you’ll also do more of what makes life fun: spend time outside, spend time together, and find happiness in the little things. It’s impossible not to smile with a dog around.
What steps are you planning to take to ensure you reach your goal?
I’m working on SEO, optimizing old blog posts, and guest posting on other blogs so I can raise my DA score (want a guest post on your blog about pet travel? Hit me up!).
I’m also going to work on sharing personal stories in an informative way. I always appreciate a personal touch when reading other blogs, and I need to work on doing the same so I can connect more with my readers.
Now it’s your turn! How can we help? Is there an area where you could use some advice, or an aspect of your blog that you’d like input on? Share it here, and we’ll answer you in comments!
I’d love readers to click around the blog and see if the navigation works for them. What makes sense for my brain won’t necessarily work for others. I’d also love to hear thoughts on my homepage, which I feel is not quite there yet. Feedback is much appreciated!
It’s always great to connect with other pet bloggers. There is so much we can learn from each other!
Thank you to Go Pet Friendly for organizing this blog hop. Until next year!