How I Did It: Zero to 1 Million Monthly Views in 8 Months

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How I grew my food blog from zero to 1 million in 8 months (by myself, organically)

You have probably read a number of blogging “success” stories. People that started blogging casually then woke up one day to realise that they were earning more from their blog than their day jobs.

This is not one of those stories.

I started blogging with the objective of making a living from my food blog.

And I grew my blog from zero to 1 million monthly views in 8 months. 100% organic.

Nagi from RecipeTin EatsHi there! I’m Nagi from RecipeTin Eats food blog!

As at the time of writing this, before I hit Publish, only 2 bloggers and 2 friends in this whole wide world know what my monthly traffic is. But while building the Food Bloggers Central (“FBC”) website, I decided it was time to open up. Because I want you to have confidence that I’m not just “talk”. That I do have real tips for you, things I figured out, or experimented with that worked (or that did not!) that got me to where I am today.

So here are the facts:

1. I walked away from a corporate career in finance to pursue my dream to make a living doing something I am truly passionate about. I have no background or experience in food (other than home cooking), photography, art, design, or anything remotely connected to food blogging. I am not a tech geek. I do not have a husband or partner working working behind the scenes to monetise, promote or work on tech stuff for my blog. I have never undertaken any activities on my blog to inflate my traffic (how??!!). If you are so inclined, you can read more about me here;

2. In May 2014, I created my blog (RecipeTin Eats), the first blog I have ever created or been in anyway associated with. At the same time, I picked up a DSLR camera for the first time. Before then, I only used point and shoot cameras for holiday snaps; and

3. 8 months later, in January 2015, my monthly views was 1 million. And if I lived anywhere other than in the 5th most expensive city in the world (Sydney, Australia) where the median house price is A$1.0m (US$1.3m), I can confidently say that I am making an independent living from my blog and related activities (photography, recipe development). (Update: As of January 2016,my monthly traffic is over 3 million)

I do not think by any stretch of the imagination that I am a “power blogger” or have “made it”. I am still small comparative to the many other successful bloggers out there. But I have managed to grow at a relatively fast pace and I have managed to monetise by blog quite successfully and the whole point of creating this website is to share my tips.

This is a long post because I’m not holding back and I’ve been busy! So I suggest you go make yourself a cup of coffee, then make yourself comfortable!

IN A NUTSHELL

Spicy Italian Breakfast Roll Ups_300px

Here’s an outline of what I cover in this post.

1. There is no success formula for growing a blog. You need to find what works for you.

2. My approach to blogging is different because I started blogging with the intention of making a living from my blog and because of my corporate background. Underlying this is my deep passion for food, cooking and sharing. I’m risking it all because I dream of making a living doing what I love.

3. Blog Growth Strategy – from the very beginning, I have had a very clear blog growth strategy. By stating my strategy, it keeps me very focussed and ensuring that everything I do is aimed at one of my 3 strategic objectives.

4. Top 7 Things I Did to Grow My Blog – I really wanted to make this a “top 10″ list…but the ones I have covered below are the stand outs. And there are only 7. :-) Some you will have heard of. Some you probably haven’t……

1. THERE IS NO SUCCESS FORMULA

I wanted to say this first up because I don’t want you to invest hundreds of hours copying what I have done, thinking it’s a surefire way to increase your readership. Please don’t. Instead, use what I share as ideas or as a guide. But interpret it to make it work for you, your blog, your lifestyle, your readers. :-)

Because there’s one thing I know for sure about blogging – there is no success formula.

And you don’t need me to tell you that it takes hard work. It annoys me when I read that – because I know that! But what you don’t read very often is this:

Lots-of-Hard-Work-Little-Bit-of-Luck

There is absolutely no denying that the growth I achieved is a combination of both. You can read more about that in this post – Lots of Hard Work and a Little Bit of Luck…..

2. INTENTION TO MAKE A LIVING

I started out blogging not just with a dream of blogging full time, but the intention of creating a blog that I could build into a full time equivalent source of income. And if I lived anywhere other than in the 5th most expensive city in the world (Sydney, Australia) where the median house price is A$1.0m (US$1.3m), I can confidently say that I achieved that in 8 months.

Double Cheese Bacon Rolls Take 2 - FINAL - Version 2

I blog with intention and strategically. But first and foremost, I always share the food I LOVE (carbs, cheese and bacon are right at the top of the list!)

Because of this specific objective, my approach to blogging has been very much a “business” approach, influenced by my professional background as a former finance executive.

I also think another factor is that because I live in Australia, I have not been very influenced by the “blogging frenzy” that is sweeping America by storm and trying to copy what successful bloggers have done. I have very much created my own path (albeit I am sure there are some similarities).

As cold and businesslike as I may sound, my approach is not about only blogging “crowd pleasers” or selling my soul for the sake of making money. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

I couldn’t work the hours I do on my blog if I didn’t have a deep passion not only for cooking and food, but sharing and helping my readers about the food I love.

But I do blog with intention. Strategically. With the objective of growing and increasing readership.

3. MY BLOG GROWTH STRATEGY

Blog-Growth-Strategy_300Having a very clear growth strategy has been key to building my blog because it keeps me really focussed. It’s something that’s ingrained in me from all those years of business planning in corporate! Here is my three pronged approach to blog growth: 

a) Attracting New Traffic;

b) Converting New Traffic into Long Term Readers; and

c) Keeping my Long Term Readers engaged.

Everything I do is aimed at one of those objectives. In most cases, they fit into all three.

My growth strategy is very simple, but having this clear in my mind means that I am very focussed on why I do things and what to do.

At this stage, it is worth noting that I did not include “connecting” with other bloggers in the list. That’s not to say that I don’t – I do. I love meeting new people, and “networking” is how I learn new things. But I do not make it a daily task to comment on X blogs each day. I don’t “suck up” to power bloggers nor try to create a blogging “tribe”.

That just isn’t my style. I’m all about doing what comes naturally. I follow blogs that inspire me. I support my friends. And it’s the blogging philosophy that underlies what I share here on FBC.

4. TOP 7 THINGS I DID TO GROW MY BLOG

So here’s the list you were waiting for. These are the top 7 things I did that I believe contributed to the traffic growth I achieved.

1. Strong Pitch and/or Creative Recipes

Did you think I’d have photography as #1? The reason I don’t is because the photos of some of the popular recipes on my blog aren’t the best!

Simple Creative Recipe: No Washing Up Ham, Egg and Cheese Bread Bowls

There is no doubt in my mind that having a strong pitch and/or creative and unique recipes are the reason that I was able to drawn in large amounts of new traffic from early on. The key similarities between all my most popular recipes from the early days that gave me my traffic boost are:

  • they are easy;
  • they have a strong selling point – e.g. popular take out made at home; and/OR
  • look good – think stretchy cheese, cute bites; and/OR
  • are something a little different.

Not all of them are amazingly original or creative. Don’t think you need to come up with a ground breaking new recipe! But all my early recipes that “went viral” are either unique/creative or have a strong selling point which I emphasise (or in a few cases, both).

NOTE: Something I am very conscious of is staying away from main stream “popular potential” recipes. Quinoa, cauliflower crust pizza, one pot pastas, buffalo anything, Mexican anything. Or if I do something in that “space”, I try to do something different. Why? Because the blogosphere is saturated with recipes in that space. Why compete with the power bloggers? Stand out by doing something different.

If you want to read more on this topic, I’ve written up two posts:

“Sell” Your Recipes: think about why you love the recipe you’re sharing. And emphasise that point!

Creative Recipes and Food With A “Pitch”: looking at the common characteristics and the strength of the “selling point”of the most popular recipes on my blog.

2. Photography

The 2nd key thing is photography. It goes without saying that good photos = standing out on social media + increased engagement on your blog.

Improving-Food-Photography

I invested an enormous amount of time to learn food photography – fast. I took 22,000 photos in 2 months (that’s an average of 350 per day). I read books, took online courses and was thirsty for more. I spent hours everyday in the early months practising, practising, practising.

Those first few months were the most frustrating. Because there are so many resources “out there”, so full of endless “tips” – but I didn’t want tips! I wanted someone to just TELL me what to do!

So it took thousands of hours of practice to “figure things out” for myself. It is so satisfying when little things “click”. Every week, I noticed my photos getting better and better. Every week, I learnt at least one new thing about photography – whether self taught or read somewhere, or a tips from a pro.

Most people can’t afford the time investment that I spent on learning food photography. I am really focussed on creating resources here in FBC that are truly practical to try to teach you how to to step up your food photos. Not just endless tips and fluffy words about “hard work” and lots of practice. Actual “how to” guides. So tune into FBC so you don’t miss out on any tips!

UPDATE: My book, The Food Photography Book, is now available! This is the book I wish I had when I started out where I reveal all the ground breaking secret tips that I figured out that made all the difference. Learn more here, including truly remarkable “before and after” examples!

The Food Photography eBook | By Nagi of RecipeTin Eats

3. Reducing Bounce Rate (i.e. increasing page views per reader)

I increased page views on my blog by 25% by focussing on this.

5 Things I Did To Increase Blog Views by 25% Almost OvernightBeing so new to the “blogosphere”, and also living in Australia though most of my readership is US (which means sponsored post opportunities through ad networks are limited), the fastest way for me to start monetising my blog was through ads. And the amount of revenue you generate from ads is heavily dependent on page views.

And I figured the easiest way to immediately increase page views was to put in some effort to increase the number of page views per visitor. So invest around as much time increasing / maintaining the average page views per visitor as I do attracting new readers to my blog.

Back in September 2014 when I first starting putting ads on my blog, I devoted a good chunk of time to experimenting and exploring how I could increase the average page views per reader. Within a few days, I increased my blog page views by 25% by increasing the average page views from 1.2 pages per reader to 1.5 pages. To put that into perspective, if you are getting 100,000 page views a month, it would increase to 125,000 without increasing the number of people visiting your blog.

I started to write more about this topic here and it got lengthy so I’ll refer you to a post I specifically wrote on this topic: 5 Things I Did To Increase Page Views by 25% (Almost Overnight)

4. Casting a “wide net”

I used to spend an enormous amount of time trying to discover new ways to promote my content. Things I tried included endless recipe sharing sites, joining Facebook groups, trying to “connect” with other bloggers, countless hours trying to increase my reach on Pinterest…

I am exhausted thinking thinking about it!

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 10.26.33 am

FoodGawker is just one of many recipe sharing sites that I contribute to to help get my name and recipes “out there”.

But casting a “wide net” is what led to a handful of things paying off. You never, ever know what will take off and where. Sometimes, it’s just about a particular pin being seen by a “power pinner” at the right time which can lead to a recipe going viral almost overnight. Or landing on the front page of Yummly with the right recipe at the right time (for me, it happened to be Pumpkin Soup – I know, so boring – during October, when America was going pumpkin-mad!).

My point here is that you’ll see many suggestions here on FBC about different ways to promote your content. Other than just Food Gawker and TasteSpotting which are the two better known recipe sharing sites (though I’ve got some drafts in mind that is going to challenge your mindset about these two being the “best” out there!). And by trying them out, you’ll find out which ones you get the best traction from.

5. A True Source For Recipes

One of my 3 Blog Growth “Prongs” is is keeping my long term readers engaged and encouraging return visitors (not just via mail list subscription). So I have been extremely focussed on building a portfolio of recipes in 3 key categories that readers can browse for inspiration: easy dinners, party food and breakfast/brunch.

Categories I have not focussed on include: sweets, drinks and sides. That way, when readers click on the Dinners, Party Food and Brunch menus, there are plenty of recipes to choose from. As opposed to having many categories and less recipes in each.

Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 4.08.15 pm

My focus has been on ensuring I build up a collection of easy Meals on my blog so readers are encouraged to return and use my blog as a source for finding recipes.

No one can do it all, even if you’ve been blogging for years (except Simply Recipes who I think has 700+ recipes on her site!!). So select your niche, and do them well. That doesn’t mean I never blog sweets. It just means that’s not where my focus is.

This is a fairly unique “key tip” (I think). I’ve certainly never read it before. I stumbled on it accidentally when I first started out. I wanted to create a free cookbook as incentive to sign up to my mail list. And I wanted that cookbook to have a specific “theme” (which was “15 Minute Meals”). So I blogged lots of 15 Minute Meals in those early days, then I used those same recipes to create my first free cookbook.

And the evidence that this works? I’ve been really humbled and honoured to hear from readers (and friends!) that they actually now just come to my blog for easy dinner ideas instead of recipes sites they used to use. I truly believe that this is a key reason why almost 25% of my page views each month are return visitors. I figure if they didn’t see my blog as an actual source for recipes, they wouldn’t keep my blog bookmarked as a source for recipes.

PS Just throwing it out there….there are a lot of blogs with many “meals” on them….not many focussed just on smoothies or cocktails, hmm….??

6. My focus is always on my greatest asset – my readers

The greatest asset of every business are their clients and customers. Not their cranes, intellectual property, real estate or whatever their business activity is.

I apply this philosophy to my blog. So no matter what I am working on for my blog, I am always thinking about my readers. For example:

  • Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 4.14.32 pm

    I offer my readers free cookbooks when they sign up to my mail list.

    Is the way I have my recipes organised easy for my readers to browse when they need dinner ideas? Nope, it can be improved.

  • Not all readers open every email I send them for new posts. What are the most popular types of recipes? They must enjoy those, I’ll do more of them.
  • If I use this Opt In plug in, will it annoy my readers? Yes, it will because it annoys me. OK, so I’ll invest in Opt In Monster so I can control when it appears.
  • A brand wants to work with me and it’s a product that my readers will love (my favourite Australian wine brand that’s also sold overseas). Should I take the money they are offering me or should I accept the products they are offering for me to giveaway to readers that has a retail value of more than double what they are offering me in cash?
  • Easter is coming up! I don’t have enough recipes on my blog to do Easter menus. But I’ll help my readers out by giving them some ideas by doing a round up from my favourite blogs!
  • What freebies can I give my readers?

7. I Just Keep My Head Down….

My last tip is this….I don’t get caught up in “cliques” or blogging politics. Politics, what politics? :-) I am sure it exists. I am well aware who the “power bloggers” are. I am well aware that blogging is (ultimately) no different to office politics or the school playground.

I just choose not to participate.

That’s very different from connecting with and “cyber-socialising” with people. And following and commenting on blogs I truly admire – which I do ( but even then, not obsessively).

But I do not get caught up in blogger politics, I don’t “suck up” to power bloggers, nor do I have a clique or exclusive group of any kind. Who has the time? :-)

This is also the philosophy that underpins Food Bloggers Central. When I started blogging, it was like starting a new school. I was that kid in the corner of the playground, eating lunch by myself. I have since made some awesome blogging friends (you know who you are! ❤︎ ). But I wanted to create a place that anyone could come to and a group that anyone can join to connect with other bloggers, make friends, ask for help – and have fun!!

PS If you haven’t already, join the Food Bloggers Central Facebook Group! It’s really active so you can chat with other bloggers, ask for help and do shout outs to participate in recipe round ups!

******

So there you have it, in a nutshell! I have so much more to share with you, and honestly, the hardest thing about writing this post was making sure I didn’t ramble on for even longer than I already have!

Food Bloggers Central is where I will share more details on tips for everything I have done and do on my blog to grow it and get it to where it is today.

– Nagi

Welcome-to-Food-Bloggers-Central

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The Food Photography Book by Nagi from RecipeTin Eats

Comments

  1. says

    Nagi, I am so glad to have landed on this page today. Its truely inspiring!! I have been following the FBC group on FB and Pinterest..
    MY blog Sandhya’s Kitchen is 8 years old. MY initial years of blogging were all about recipe shares and I had absolutely no idea about social media or promoting. For the last 2 years, I do focus a bit more of page views and it has improved due to Pinterest but still considerably very low. I would love to work towards improving visitors to my blog , as this in turn helps in working with clients too.. Its all a number game :) . Having said that, I am a happy bee in my cocoon and have never been bothered about any power bloggers.

    I would love to work towards improvising my numbers..in the next few months…

  2. Marge says

    You said: “Easter is coming up! I don’t have enough recipes on my blog to do Easter menus. But I’ll help my readers out by giving them some ideas by doing a round up from my favourite blogs!”

    Do you ask the other bloggers for permission before using their recipes in a round up or is giving credit enough?

    I’m so impressed with your articles and wish I’d found you sooner.

  3. says

    YES! SO happy that I came across this post. You are such an honest blogger and I’ve taken so much from this post. You’ve gained a new reader! I’m just starting with my own food blog, and you’ve inspired me to work harder. Thank you!!

  4. says

    Thank you, Nagi!

    I’m not a food blogger but I am an Aussie blogger whose primary audience is in North America, so it’s fantastic to hear your success story.

    What an amazing achievement! You’ve made me believe I can achieve a lot more than I have up until now so thanks! And, now I have no more excuses!!! :-)

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. says

    Hi, chanced this blog while I was searching for recipe selling tips. I just submitted my recipe blog and hopefully you can accept my application to join your facebook group. I know nothing much about selling recipes ebook. Gald that I found this blog. Your successfull story really inspires bloggers.

  6. says

    You are the first blogger to say that you started a food blog for money and I love you for that! I just started my blog and I started it because I love to cook however I have dreams of having a little extra cash from blogging. Thank you for providing this resource and being honest.

  7. says

    Hello Nagi,

    I am glad I found your blog. Your blog is really inspiring and you are so generous to share your success experience with us. My blog is still a baby and sometimes I find it discouraging. After reading your posts I am getting new confidence in making my passion into living.

    Thank you.

  8. says

    I just started my blog this month and I can’t believe I haven’t come across your blog yet. I have a lot of work to do to make my blog grow (starting with improving my food photography), but your words have been very inspiring. Thanks for all the great tips! :)

  9. says

    Nagi! This is by far THE MOST helpful and honest post that I have ever read for a very long time. I enjoyed every single word of it!

    I loved that how you narrowed down your focus to dinner, party food, and breakfast/brunch. That’s such a genius idea. With many power bloggers focusing on gluten free or vegan recipes, I felt that my blog was slowly approaching to a dead end as there’s no Unique Selling Proposition in my blog at all. However, reading this post changed that perspective.

    So glad that I found your site and FBC. Totally going to join. Thanks so so much for sharing! <3

  10. einepriselecker says

    Wow, why do I only find this site now? Although, my blog is still a baby, so I am right on time. I am following your blog for a while and have tried many of your recipes, yum! Always looking in awe at those pictures and recipes and also the writing. When I first went on your site, I read the part about: “you will never see a cauliflower crust pizza on my blog” and was like: I like her, I will come back here :-) Anyway, I am happy to have found this site and also got myself a copy of you food photography book – which I will devour tonight. I really like how you set up this whole page, lots of great information and bringing people together. Quite some time will be spent here…

    • Nagi says

      Hi Cynthia! WOW, I think you are one of the FIRST EVER blogs I came across! I think your blog is amazing :) I love how authentic and honest you are, and you REALLY know good food. :) I’m flattered that you read this!! N x

  11. says

    Nagi, I am new to FBC and your blog and I’m oh-so grateful to have stumbled upon both! I have to admit that I have been on a bit of a FBC binge–I can’t get enough of your generous (and genius!) wisdom. Thank you for creating this space to share openly and honestly. I am a new blogger and I really resonated with your blog startup story, as I, too, have been very intentional about everything I do with my site. My monthly pageviews are still pretty low (OK, really low), but I hope to see some growth by implementing some of these tips. Thanks so much! XX Katie

    • Nagi says

      We all have to start somewhere Kate! When I started, the page views were family and friends :) I think the key is loving what you do so much that you want to put in the hard yards to grow it! I am so glad you are finding the information on here useful! Shout out to me on FBC Facebook if you ever have any questions or want to chat. :) N x

  12. says

    Nagi,
    Thank you so much for sharing this information. I’m new to the blogging world and its true that sometimes you feel like that new school kid eating lunch all by yourself! I’ve learned so much from reading your posts here. Thank you for being so direct and honest. That’s really refreshing! I’ve recently joined FBC on Facebook and find it very helpful as well. Sometimes I second guess myself because of the “power bloggers” but reading your content makes me confident that I can do this! Thanks again & I look forward to reading and learning more!

    • Nagi says

      Hi Nellie! Welcome to the world of blogging! :) You know, I honestly would advise to stay away from “power bloggers”. I think it’s great to follow bloggers whose blogs you really are interested in, but analysing too much can be distracting and also puts you at risk of not being yourself / original! Beat your own path! :) I can honestly say that other than Pioneer Woman and Simply Recipes, I do not follow any of the large bloggers. :) I might not be making any sense, I guess what I’m trying to say is that I don’t want to compare myself NOR do I even want to even be subconsciously influenced by their style, way of writing, photos, type of food they post etc, nor comparing myself!. :) See you around!!

    • Nagi says

      Hi Ramya! I’m so glad you find inspiration on here :) Whatever it is that is bringing you down about your blog, always remember that what you do is AMAZING and more than what 99.99% of the world do!!! Seriously. You should be so proud of your blog, it is beautiful. And the food your share is really interesting which I LOVE! N x

  13. nutrizonia says

    I found your blog, thru your comment on Kevin’s blog (Kevin is coking)
    I love fbc and I started to take action , a million thanks for your efforts :)

  14. says

    Hi Nagi. I’m here to join your “ex-suits turned food bloggers” group! As a lawyer and former CEO of a large medical group, I finally decided to hang it all up and do what I love – cook and write! My mom thinks I’m nuts (not the first time), and my hubby thinks it’s awesome! :) Thank you for your businesslike approach to this! It is much appreciated. I’m happy to have found and joined FBC. Tons of great info and inspiration!

    • Nagi says

      Heather – I think I love you :) It feels SO GOOD to hear that there is someone else out there who has done what I did!! I’m so glad you found FBC too!! I have to say, it’s kinda fun applying the business mindset to food / blogging. :) It gives us a bit of a different perspective, if you know what I mean? Thanks for your message!!! I do hope you joined the FB group – looking forward to getting to know you better!! N x

  15. says

    Nagi, you have reinvigorated me! I haven’t been able to prioritise my blog for some time now, but I want to focus and work strategically NOW. Thanks for helping me get back on track and I look forward to photography tips too. I really need to learn photography. I look at some of my food pics and cringe.

    So glad I stumbled upon FBC!
    Emma

    • Nagi says

      I’m so glad you did too Emma! I hope you joined our Facebook group so I can get to know you and your blog better! :)

  16. says

    Thank you so much for all the valuable information in this story. You have done an amazing job to get where you have so quickly. I have been blogging 3 times a week for 6 years and you zip right past me. You have given me so many thing to think about in your article.
    Thanks again
    Julie

    • Nagi says

      Oh no, you can’t think like that. :( I was fortunate enough to be able to dedicate 100% of my time learning how to blog + photography, not everyone are able to do that. I don’t work 100% on my blog anymore, more like 30% of my time I’d say. But for 5 or so months, I was 1000% all about photos + blog.

      I’m glad this post has given you some things to think about! N x

  17. says

    Wow Nagi! Just came across this post! Really super inspiring to see what’s possible with passion and dedication! I’m super excited to see what I’ll see next from you 😀
    Definitely have to go through your “how to increase pageviews” post! So much to learn!
    Thanks so much!

  18. says

    Thank you so much for this post! We have only been blogging for a few months now and are trying to learn as much as we can. Love everything I read here :)

    • Nagi says

      I’m so glad you are finding this useful! :) Hope you signed up to the newsletter so you get all the new posts in your inbox! :)

  19. eastwestlovestory says

    Fantastic post. I was especially inspired by your 300+ photos a day! I feel motivated to work harder on my photography. Thank you!

  20. meaghanlamm says

    Since you make most of your income from ads I’d love to see an income report around here once in awhile! I’m a little bit obsessive about income reports. What kind of gets me down is that what I really enjoy cooking is also something that is super saturated: one pot meals. I can’t figure out how to stand out without reinventing the wheel!

    • Nagi says

      Hi Meaghan – I’ll consider it. To be honest, I’m not all that comfortable displaying my personal financial information in its entirety on FBC. But I may do so down the track if I feel it will really be of value to members. :)

  21. says

    This is by far the most comprehensive and genuine how-I-grew-my-blog post and I love it…and I have read my fair few of those posts. I also just want to say that know how many readers you have I am so impressed and amazed that you have the time to reply to what looks like every person who visits and even visit others like my small time blog. After reading this it’s no wonder why you’ve become so successful and I know that’s just the start. Thank you for sharing!

    • Nagi says

      Hi Sarah! I’m so glad that you found this useful! I think we share the same views about how “how I grew my blog” posts, believe me, I read my share!!

      And honestly, I don’t classify blogs into large and small blogs. I don’t think that’s right at all. I read and visit blogs of friends and those that inspire me. :)

      Thank you for your lovely words! N x

  22. says

    This is great info. Usually you go to a site where they talk about how they got their traffic up so high, and nothing on the page was very helpful. This was very helpful. I look at all my popular pins on pinterest and realize one thing. They’re all weight loss related! Time to start focusing more on healthy recipes. :)

  23. says

    Oh, I am so glad I accidentally found your Facebook group and now this page! It gives me hope that I can actually reach my goal of full-time blogging in 2016.

    I’m walking into recipe blogging already with the knowledge of SEO, marketing and blogging since I used to own two coupon blogs. In my eyes, those blogs were successful and I did make a good chunk of money off of them. But, I wasn’t passionate about it like I am with cooking. So now, I’ve been diving head deep in and will be starting my blog up shortly. I have about two weeks of posts ready, and I’m going to continue to attempt to post 5x a week until I make it to my goal. With a full-time job in the gov’t to boot.

    Really, you’re a great inspiration! Makes me happy to know it’s possible to do with a goal of blogging full-time being the same goal as mine.

  24. says

    Hi Nagi, I just wanted to say thank you for creating such a great resource and for sharing yourself and what you’ve learned so freely! I can so relate to the new kid at school eating lunch by myself – I’m only a couple of months along into this blogging world and there is so much for me to learn it scares me sometimes! I’m going to try and figure out finding the FBC Facebook page (social media – eek!) to see if I can join in!
    BTW I found this site via your RecipeTinEats blog – I realised so many of my favourite pins on pinterest came from your recipes, so I came to explore further!

    • Nagi says

      Hi Justine! Thank you so much for popping by and reading! I really hope you join us on Facebook, it’s a fantastic group of people and I love that everyone is so willing to help each other out :)

      Don’t worry, in a couple of months you will feel like an old pro at blogging!! I started around this time last year and I remember how daunted I was. :) Seriously, join the FBC Facebook group and you’ll make new friends in no time!! :)

    • Nagi says

      Thanks Matthew!! I think it makes a difference, especially when starting out so you can build a stash of recipes that readers can browse through, rather than having just a few in a whole bunch of categories :)

  25. says

    Iam totally happy to have found this site.Your story is truly inspiring and wish you loads of luck.Iam also a food blogger and I could relate me to you in many respects.Thanks for bringing this.

  26. says

    Hi Nagi! This website is great and I’m really looking forward to following along to learn more about blogging. Congrats on your website – you’ve done tremendously well! I love all your posts and recipes. I’m glad we “met” through Food Bloggers Central! Btw, I left a career in finance law and now spend most of my time blogging. Glad to hear that you’ve also made the jump!

    • Nagi says

      Hey – YAY!!! Fellow ex-suits turned food bloggers!! :) So glad you are enjoying FBC, and SO happy you are part of it!

  27. says

    Congratulations on this brand new website, Nagi.. I wish you all the best on this new venture of yours. I am so glad I happened to join your facebook group by chance. I used to visit your blog, not for recipes, but for the simple pleasure of your style, which I am sure comes from your good heart. There is so much to learn from you.

  28. says

    I read this on Saturday and so many things have been swirling around in my head since then I just had to come back and tell you what an inspiration joining FBC has been. Since I joined I made the leap to a new theme, got serious about my photography and submitted to foodgawker. Just looking back at my posts I can see where I joined FBC.
    I really feel like I’ve been playing around for the last couple of years and through you and FBC I’m now inspired to make more of my time and my blog.
    You’ve created a wonderful space for us all. Thank you!

    • Nagi says

      HURRAH!! I’m so glad you hear that Nancy! And honestly, you know what? FBC is what it is because of YOU guys. You make it FUN and everyone is so fabulous and supportive it inspires me to want to share and help! So thank you for being a part of it, truly. You ROCK Nancy!! :)

  29. says

    Naaaaagiiiiii!Warm greetings from California! I LOVE this site!It’s one of the most altruistic sites I know. I am excited like a little kid, no like a pirate who finally found a treasure chest. Yes, your blog IS a treasure: so many tips, so much info! Today I became a member of your FB group. Thank you for doing all this. Blessings!

    • Nagi says

      YAY!! So glad you joined Anna! I hope you pick up some tips and more importantly, HAVE FUN and meet fab new bloggers!! :)

  30. says

    Nagi… this is just really excellent advice! I started blogging 5 months ago, and was ECSTATIC if I got 20 pageviews per day (which was still mostly family lol), and now I’m up to about 40,000 pageviews per month. Growing a steady rate has been my goal all along, and like you, I started blogging with the intention of making some extra money for my family all while doing something I LOVE to do, cooking, baking, and sharing my recipes :)
    Thank you SO MUCH for creating this website, and I love that it’s free. So many food blogger resource sites charge, and it irks me lol

    • Nagi says

      I’m totally with you! The first post I published, I think I had 3 visitors that day :) You know what, you keep plugging away and you’ll create your own luck, you just never know when or where it will happen! The fact that you LOVE it so much is the key.

      And thank you for being a part of FBC!! Honestly, people like you are what makes this place so great :)

  31. says

    Congratulations on this beautiful new blog, Nagi. And thank you for creating this space and for your INCREDIBLY generous spirit! You alone inspired me to get serious about my photography and I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the environment you’ve created within the FBC Facebook group. I’ve made several true friends and love to support and be supported by them in this wacky food blogging thing.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! xoxoxo

    • Nagi says

      No – THANK YOU!! Marisa, you are endlessly sweet, generous and kind and I can’t tell you how grateful I am that I met you. And genuine too. You are so genuine, and I love that about you.

      Thank YOU for being a part of FBC!! You make such a difference by being there :)

  32. says

    Wow, Nagi, I am blown away. This site is gold and I’ll be reading this particular post over and over again. Your generosity in sharing your knowledge is so appreciated.
    Such a fabulous community you have created with all your hard work. Thank you!

    • Nagi says

      Thanks Robyn! I’m so glad you find it useful! :) I’m happy to share what I’ve figured out. I really want this to be a place where we can learn from each other, you know?? It’s not possible for any single person to know it all, but if we’re happy to SHARE our knowledge then we’ll be a lot better off!!

  33. says

    oh Nagi, you sound like me. although I am still no where near this and have been blogging for 6 years. Just rebdranded though. So thank you for the honesty. Truly Truly! and thank you for FBC!

  34. says

    Dearest Nagi, I am delighted to be part of FBC. We have an amazing group with so many talented and supportive bloggers and growing each day. I want to extend a big thank you for taking the time to start up and support FBC and now create this great resource website to share your thoughts and expertise. Thanks for putting FBC in website format so we can easily look up topics that have come up and that we need to reference later. It makes it so much easier than trying to find it on Facebook. Love this post, foodbloggerscentral.com, recipetineats.com and your efforts. Take care…

    • Nagi says

      Stop with the thank yous!! :) I am totally happy to do it, it’s easy to want to share when you’re part of a group of such fantastic people :) The tips goes both ways!! I might share my tips but I learn from you guys too! That’s why I love FBC, it’s all about SHARING the knowledge!! :)

  35. says

    Oh Nagi, I LOVE the new site, I LOVE this post, i LOVE YOU!! (sorry, will stop being creepy now!)
    Seriously, though, I could waffle on for longer than this post (teehee) about how much FBC has already helped and encouraged me, but what I really just want to say is GOOD ON YOU and you deserve all the success that has already come and is surely coming to you!
    I love being part of this awesome community, but what I appreciate the most is how accessible it is to everyone – there are no cliques or specially favoured, thank goodness. There are a few other similar communities to this already, but none that are free and have grown organically from a naturally evolving supportive community.
    I really look forward to seeing how this space evolves :-) :-)

    • Nagi says

      No, never ever ever will this place be cliquey. It is one of the things I hated when I first started blogging, I found it SO cliquey! Honestly, FBC is totally about everyone sharing their knowledge, I certainly don’t know everything and I make loads of mistakes. But I figure if we put all our head together we have a powerhouse of knowledge!!

      You’re a TOP CHICK Helen!! Can’t wait until you move back so we can MEET soon!! :)

  36. says

    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful honest inspiring post. I have just recently decided to look at my blog as a business and so many times I’ve been tempted to just pull the plug and be done, mostly because of food blogging politics and negativity online. But I decided to stick to the reasons why I created it in the first place and hold on to the passion that fuels every single recipe. Thank you for sharing your tips and your journey, and for creating a wonderful community for us. xo’s Florentina

    • Nagi says

      Politics? What politics? :) My advice is to avoid it! Concentrate on the most important thing – you and your blog. Never make excuses for yourself, never do things just to please others. Your blog is your own blood, sweat and tears, you should do as you please. And I was just over there checking it out and it’s BEAUTIFUL. Don’t let anyone drag you down! :)

  37. says

    Me again :). Just a suggestion – I would be interested in a post about how to cater to the international market. From the articles you’ve written so far it sounds like you’re catering to a mostly American crowd? If so, how does that affect the way that you blog?

    • Nagi says

      That’s an interesting one! Though the thing is, with the US being such a massive market for all bloggers, it’s really a post to help out non US bloggers ensuring they write their blogs to appeal to the US market. I am hugely conscious of this because it’s where 90% of my readers are.

      Do you have a significant international audience? I’m just conscious that most of the members of FBC are US!!

  38. says

    Nagi NAGI NAGI!!! I love this post…this site…and I HEART you for creating this for us. You are incredibly talented and I truly am grateful that you took your clearly successful past corporate life and incorporated it into your blogging career, yet through it all you don’t compromise yourself. I cannot wait to go through all of this!!! Congrats my dear friend ( I do hope I am one of those bloggy friends :) ) I wish you loads of luck and I will now be double giddy when I see email updates from Recipe Tin and FBC!

    • Nagi says

      Of COURSE you are Mila! I am so happy to have met you and I love that we have FUN at FBC as well as learning from each other! :) Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and being part of the group! :)

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