Writing blog posts that people want to read doesn’t just happen; it takes intention and planning. Here’s what I learned from my post popular blog posts.
September was a huge month- by my modest standards- for Winstead Wandering. My little blog was viewed more than 10,000 times, and I had a few really popular posts.
I’m beginning to learn that popular posts don’t always happen by chance. Sure, sometimes a post will explode for seemingly no reason; more often, though, we can analyze the components of a successful post and, at least in part, duplicate that success.
Here’s what I learned from my most popular blog posts of September:
This is one of my favorite posts because it’s one I continue to make. A lot. As a food blogger, I rarely make the same recipe multiple times because, if I’m going to create something in the kitchen, I want it to be something new that I can share here. This is one recipe that’s sticking around.
what I learned
This post, even though it’s a simple salad dressing recipe, was years in the making. I’ve been dissatisfied with store bought ranch dressing for as long as I can remember. It doesn’t taste anything like the kind you get in restaurants, and that sucks. When I finally decided to make my own, I did it because I wanted a better option. Sharing the recipe here was almost an afterthought.
I learned that you should write what you know. This is something I’ve mentioned before, but the success of this recipe is a great reminder. I didn’t ask readers what recipes they wanted to me to make (although I’ve done that before here); I made a recipe that I knew would make my life better. I shared that recipe here and people happened to agree.
September was the month of the condiment around here. I love a great sauce or dressing, and I love that my readers seem to share that love, too. Wouldn’t the world be a better place if everyone stopped fighting and started enjoying more sauces?
what i learned
I didn’t know what comeback sauce was until I moved to Mississippi. The NW has fry sauce, which I love, but I had never of or tried this kicked up version.
I learned that the most successful recipes don’t always seem to have universal appeal. In this case, I shared a recipe that a lot of the country had never heard of. It did well because readers are open to trying new things, especially when you present and explain them in a way that relates to something they’re already familiar with.
This post exploded a couple months ago on StumbleUpon, and I’ve been seeing steady traffic from it ever since. It seems people recognize that a dip is fairly useless without a vehicle with which to eat it.
what I learned
I try to keep my recipes fairly uncomplicated. That’s the way I cook and eat at home, so that’s what I want to present to my readers. I occasionally create a dish that’s slightly less simple, like , but for the most part, I want my food to be accessible to all cooks.
I learned people want the basics. To be honest, I considered this a throwaway post when I first wrote it. I made these chips for myself one afternoon and decided to post the recipe while I was at it. I had no idea it would become the most viewed post in the nine month history of my blog. It did, though, because for all the 17-ingredient, 33-step recipes out there, people still want to create awesome versions of the basics.