Blog Basics: 50+ Must-Know Resources for Building Blog Traffic

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a big List of Blog Basics

This is a little self-five but I just put together a giant list of ways you can make money with your blog in a guest post over at MakinTheBaconyou should totally check it out.

40 Amazing Resources To Help Your Blog Make Money

While I was writing that post, the wheels in my head started turning (a rare occurrence, not to be taken lightly) and I realized that even though that list is a great resource *self-five* bloggers would be able to make more use of it if they understood what I call “blog basics.”

This is past the point of your basic blog setup – stuff like choosing a domain name, setting up hosting, or picking your blogging platform.

This is the stuff that will save you frustration, money, and time on your road to building an awesome blog.

You may have read up on the key parts of building a blog, but it’s easy to get lost in one and forget the others.

I wanted to put them all in one spot to make it easy to remember, and also provide you with some of my favorite resources around the web.

There are 2 main categories this post covers:
  1. Blog Design & Appearance
  2. Blog Traffic Strategies

Those 2 things are HUGE need-to-know parts of blogging. They have massive power over your blog’s success.

Whether you’re starting a blog for the first time or looking to revamp an old blog, you should be putting some time into learning about those 2 biggies.

Within each of the 2 BIG blog basics, there’s a list of subcategories with a ton of the best blogging resources for you to bookmark.

Blog Design/Appearance

The way your blog looks can determine how long a reader stays, if they join your e-mail list, if they buy anything, and if they ever come back.

Your blog design, colors, and visuals give your readers a sense of who you are.


Use blog photos to make posts more sharable and interesting.

The Ultimate Guide to Finding and Using Images on Your Blog

30 Free Stock Photo Resources For Your Blog Posts

17 Amazing Sites With Breathtaking Free Stock Photos


Each color has a different impact on your readers. If you use it effectively, it balances your blog, making it interesting to look at, if used incorrectly it might just give your readers a headache.

35 Free Tools for Choosing Your Website’s Color Scheme (Techyourblog)

Choosing the Best Colors for Your Blog Design + Free Color Palette Template (Theblogmarket)

How to Use the Psychology of Color to Increase Website Conversions (Kissmetrics)

The Ultimate Guide To Using Color Psychology In Marketing + Free Color Schemes (Coschedule)

One of my fav blogging accessories – a solar keyboard *

blog Branding

Your blog brand is the end result of all your visuals and your message put together. It’s your online personality.

How to Create a Brand for Your Blog in 5 Minutes (Techyourblog)

7 Essential Ingredients for Branding a Blog (Thebrandedsolopreneur)

10 Ways to Build Your Personal Brand (Entrepreneur)

How + Why To Create A Style Guide For Your Blog (Melyssagriffin)

Getting Blog Traffic

This is what you’re probably going to concentrate on most when you’re building a blog, since getting people to actually read your blog is kinda a big deal.

These are blog basics – you should know that these tools and methods exist and have a basic understanding of them even if you choose not to use them all.


Search Engine Optimization helps search engines like Google see your blog, and can be the difference between making it onto Page 1 of the search results or page nobodyisevergoingtofindyou.

SEO Fitness Workbook, 2016 Edition: The Seven Steps to Search Engine Optimization Success on Google (Book)*

White Hat SEO Case Study: How to Get a #1 Ranking (Backlinko)

7 Simple SEO Tricks To Improve Your 2016 SEO (Seonick)

10 SEO Traps to Avoid Google Downranking in 2016 (Semrush)

How Long Does Link Building Take to Influence Rankings? (Moz)

5 Things You Need to Know About Social Media & SEO (Kissmetrics)

What’ll be the best length for a blog article in 2016 for SEO? (Snapagency)


Learn to use keyword research to get an idea of what people are looking for. You can use it to find peoples’ problems, then solve them, and you can use your fancy SEO skills to help your blog posts rank long-term.

Beginner’s Guide to Keyword Research (Moz)

Keyword Research 101: How to Choose The Best Tags & Keywords For Your Blog Posts – And Why This Matters (theblogpress)

The Definitive Guide to Keyword Research

A 3-Step Process for Painless Keyword Research

Link Building

High-quality links to your blog from other sources help boost your rank in the search engines. You may have great content, but Google will be more likely to give you a page 1 spot if it can see that others are linking back to your blog.

11 Advanced Link Building Techniques For Future SEO (Semrush)

What Not To Do While Link Building in 2016 (E2msolutions)

9 Link Building Resources That’ll Increase Your Search Rankings

Guest Blogging for Seo, Traffic, Backlinks & link building Strategy

Natural Link Building 101

Effective Commenting Strategies

Don’t just comment like a crazy person. Learn the best ways to use comments to drive traffic to your blog without being spammy.

How to Drive Targeted Traffic with Blog Commenting (Quicksprout)

How To Generate Insane Volumes Of Traffic Through Blog Commenting (Thinktraffic)

How to Craft a Blog Comment That Will Generate Traffic and Get You Noticed (Twelveskip)

Using Ads

There’s nothing wrong with using paid ads to promote your blog, but if you’re not careful you could end up throwing a bunch of money into a never-ending abyss.

Instead, take the time to learn the basics of advertising and save yourself some time and [lots] of money.

How I Made $41,254 Last Month With Pinterest Ads

Understanding the Analytics behind Google Adwords

Facebook Advertising Made Simple: A Step-by-Step Guide

Facebook Ads Bidding 101: Everything You Need to Know (…supported by data)

The Kissmetrics Guide To LinkedIn Ads – Part I: The Basics

Social Media

The king of all free blog traffic – social media. Learn it, love it, live it.

Twitter Strategies

How to Drive Traffic to Your Website With Twitter

Twitter Traffic: How to Double Your Traffic to Your Content

LinkedIn Strategies

4 Ways to Drive More LinkedIn Traffic to Your Blog (Quicksprout)

How to gain traffic and exposure using LinkedIn Groups and Answers (Wordtracker)

How I Easily Got 25% More Views on My LinkedIn Profile (Hubspot)

7 Ways to Drive More Blog Traffic Using LinkedIn

Facebook Strategies

Three Simple Ways to Dramatically Increase Website Traffic From Facebook

How to Use Facebook Groups to Get More Traffic and Traction for Your Blog

How to Drive More Facebook Traffic to Your Website in 5 Easy Steps

Pinterest Strategies

8 Easy Steps To Get More Repins On Pinterest (Business2community)

The Ultimate Guide to Getting Pinterest Traffic (Successfulblogging)

5 Ways To Flood Your Blog With Traffic Using Pinterest

How to Use Pinterest to Dramatically Boost Blog Referral Traffic

Instagram Strategies

5 Ways to Get Traffic From Instagram (Kimgarst)

How to Use Instagram to Drive Tons of Traffic To Your Website (commsaxis)

How to Drive Website Traffic With Instagram

I hope all these resources help answer some of your questions about blogging basics. If you’ve committed to building a great blog then you already know it takes work, but understanding a little about these can really save you a headache later on.

Let me know what you think!

What’s been one of your biggest struggles with blogging?

*Hey hey, some affiliate links were used in this post, which means if you decide to buy something through it, I might get a little sumthin’ back, which helps me keep this blog running. I’ve tried paying for hosting with memes… it did not go well.

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About the author


A sarcastic introvert with a blogging compulsion and a tendency to pet ALL THE DOGS.
Problem-solver, critical thinker, tech-enthusiast, occasional artist, very-expensive-piece-of-paper-holder (aka my Psychology degree.)
Fan of chai tea, hard cider, and new places.

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  • Kay

    Great roundup – definitely bookmarking many of these to stash away as resources! Thanks!

    • Thanks Kayly! Glad you like ’em 🙂