Step 1. Decide on a concept
I often hear that there are too many culinary blogs. Yes and no. There are many blogs. Good ones. There are culinary sites that I do not like for stolen content (not always, but often), not verified recipes, and most importantly, for the lack of feedback and passion. Finding your niche is not easy. To start, ask yourself three questions.
What am I best at?
Baking cakes and decorating them fantastically? Are you good at cheeses and types of wine? Capable of updating the kitchen with improvised means in a day? Putting things on the shelves so that Marie Kondo envies (I already envy)? Or maybe, like Julie from the famous movie, able to create a classic cookbook blog? I decided that my blog will be based on two ideas: simple step-by-step recipes and the ability to adapt most dishes to the requirements of kashrut – the Jewish food system.
For example, I don’t have any pork recipes at all. Am I losing my audience? Maybe. However, there’s a circle of regular loyal readers formed around the blog, who often cook according to my recipes, and this is more valuable to me.
What is missing?
Once at a university, an economics professor described the essence of business with one phrase: “Find a need, and satisfy it.” If you are often unsuccessfully looking for some content, it is possible that it is very small, and it’s time to create it yourself.
By the way, this is one of the reasons why I started writing tutorials for bloggers – I could not find systematic information.
Who do I want to write for?
Think over the portrait of your reader. What do these people do? Where are they? According to grillfaq.com, this helps a lot, not only at the stage of conceptualization but also at the stage of promotion.
Step 2. Come up with a name
I went over a lot of names before I settled on mine. How to come up with a name for the blog? My favorite ways:
describe, reflect the essence of the content as much as possible (e.g. “The house to come to”);
include the name of the creator (e.g. Roxanne’s Kitchen);
just connect the words in a unique way (would be cool if there is a story behind it that can be told to readers) (e.g. Gimme Some Oven).
Important – check if there are already blogs or sites with the same name (Google will help you with that) and if the corresponding domain name is free.
Step 3. Buy a domain name
No matter which platform for the blog you ultimately prefer, I would recommend purchasing a separate domain. From my own experience, readers are more likely to go to a blog whose address does not contain blogspot or wordpress domains.
The older the age of the blog, the more problematic it is to transfer it to your own domain – you will encounter reindexing, loss of position, etc. In general, do not repeat my mistakes: if a blog is serious and for a long time, immediately register a domain. Choose exclusively verified domain registrars.
Step 4. Choose a platform
I prefer Blogger or WordPress – just a matter of taste and purpose. Both platforms are popular with bloggers everywhere. Blogger is a free platform provided by Google. Accordingly, there is no need to pay for hosting, but the site is not fully owned by you, you kind of rent a place.
It is possible to connect your own domain. You can set a beautiful individual design. WordPress is a modern, dynamic, understandable platform. It has a lot of plugins and templates, including free ones. To start a blog on your own domain, you need to pay for hosting (additional costs).
Step 5. Choose a Theme
Install the template Both for WordPress and for Blogger, there are a lot of beautiful templates, both paid and free. I found mine, and then set it up manually.
In the case of Blogger, this is inevitable, so minimal knowledge of HTML will not hurt. Unfortunately, the platform’s own design capabilities are extremely limited.
In addition to external beauty, take care of such a thing as usability. Think about whether it’s convenient for readers to search for the information they need, whether they have an incentive to go further through the pages of the blog.
It is very important how the blog looks on the smartphone screen, too. The views and the average time spent on my site instantly increased significantly after installing the adaptive template.
Step 6. Create conditions for taking photos
The success of culinary and DIY blogs is 70% determined by the beauty of the picture. Therefore, it is important to:
1.Think over the style of pictures.
What will distinguish your photos? So, let’s say, the photos in one of my favorite blogs are made on a bright and clean white background. In another, a girl takes pictures of almost all dishes in one original plate. It is so recognizable that the photos from this blog cannot be confused with any others.
2.Find a place to shoot.
This is not difficult – the brightest point of the apartment (with natural light), where you can also sit with the background and props.
3.Choose a technique.
It all depends on your financial capabilities and skills. You can make a “yummy” photo both on a professional camera and on a P&S camera or iPhone.
4. Find a photophone.
You can purchase a professional one, or you can build it yourself. The simplest is a sheet of Whatman paper, which will periodically need to be changed as it becomes soiled.
5. Select the requisite.
The most photogenic plates, forks, pans, pots, napkins, etc. Textures and volume always look more advantageous in the frame. Take a closer look at old things – they often make photos super stylish.
6.Master graphics editors.
The photos need editing. If possible, get Adobe Lightroom. A good free alternative is the GIMP program, which is recommended even by top American food bloggers. There are enough functions in it to qualitatively edit the photo for the blog.
Step 7. Write and publish several posts
You will be surprised, but the most difficult thing is to get away from thinking and start preparing for the publication stage. You can endlessly write tasks and even a whole business plan for a blog, customize the design, customize widgets.
But the fear of the first post will one day still have to be overcome. Prepare 5-7 posts in advance and publish them with a certain frequency. This will give a head start to prepare new content and generate ideas.
Congratulations! Now you have your own blog! There is a lot of interesting work ahead!
P.S. Think about what you will do with the cooked food! I’m serious! Sometimes I am having a hard time because I want to make something from the ingredients that my family does not eat, and so I have to leave these recipes for later.