Sunday, 6 December 2015

Setting Blog Goals and Why They're Important (+ Free Goal Planner!)

Blog goals are important and help you establish what you want to change and achieve in terms of your blogging journey. Get an idea of what you want with my free goal planner!

For most people, making news years resolutions consist of eating less bad food, (when you have all that Christmas chocolate in the house, puh-lease!) doing more exercise (running for the bus counts, right?) and spending less time on social media (I'm sorry, what?) but for bloggers, there's a little more involved. New Year is the time for sitting down and making some plans, or if you're the type of blogger I used to be, forgetting about plans, winging it for most of year and finding yourself in the same place year on year.

If you want to see any change in your blog, it's a good idea to change how you blog.

Changing how you blog is really rather subjective, but to see any real differences, you've got to at least sit down and take a look at what you're currently doing, work out what's working, and what's, well, not.

Let's look at an example.

My current bounce rate on Nellie and Co. is between 60-65% - not a bad rate when it comes to blogs. I've been trying to organically lower the rate without the help of widgets, plug-ins, and external services, but the crutch? My bounce rate has stayed decidedly the same with the use of my current methods. Pretty disappointing, but this is a sign my friend. This is a sign that says 'girl, stop wasting your time doing what isn't working! Take a step back, look at the bigger picture and think of how you can kick this problem to the floor, okay?'

I have a new goal. I want to bring my bounce rate down to 50-55% by the end of 2016. I want to achieve this organically without the help of widgets, plug-ins or external devices, and I will, I just won't achieve it doing what I've been doing previously. I have a new blog goal, a destination and a plan. That's the point of setting goals.

You can't get to somewhere if you don't know where somewhere is.

So, why should you set blog goals?

Goals Help You Face The Future

Sure, it's all well and good to look back on past mistakes and vow to never make them again, but if you're constantly living in the past, you'll never great your future. Goals keep you looking forward and focused on the task in hand. You want to grow your email subscribers by 100, great, then start looking at ways you can do that rather than looking back and thinking 'if only I'd started doing this x months ago'. Get your Elsa on and let it all go my friend! Being able to see the destination will push you to achieve it, and will give you a sense of pride and accomplishment once you're there.

Goals Are Motivation Masters

How many times have you said 'I'm going to do this!' and then, not done it? It's okay, we're all guilty of it, but setting goals means we're less likely to do that and more likely to get stuff done. That feeling when you finally achieve something, when you've cracked something you've been figuring out for days, weeks, months, that sense of pride, the feeling of winning, it's addictive, and you'll only want that feeling again and again.

Goals Hold You To Your Word

I'd been promising myself I would create a workbook of sorts for a long time before I actually got around to it. As soon as I knew I wanted to be creating something tangible for my viewers to have for themselves, I vowed I would one day do it. That was my problem - 'one day' doesn't push me or motivate me to do anything, 'one day' allows me to be lazy and put it off. Ah, but the moment I promised exclusive content extras to my mail list subscribers, I was accountable. Two weeks later, I created my content extra and made it ready for distribution.

But I don't know how to set blog goals!

Aha, we come to best part of this post - The Free Goal Planner.

The best way to set goals is to write them down. Being vague and saying you'll do something 'one day' is all well and good, but do you know what's better? Settling on some goals and writing them the heck down.

My Goal Planner has everything you need to help you write down and set your blog goals, explore what you need to do in order to achieve those goals, and how to break them down into more manageable tasks. You know what, I've even included some simple, but affective blog goals you can nab and steal for yourself.

Get your free Goal Planner and start establishing your future blog goals!

Here's some things to consider when using the Goal Planner and setting some blog goals:

Don't Give Yourself Too Much To Do

The Goal Planner allows for five different goals, breaking each goal down into three easier to manage steps. That's a total of 15 different steps! You do not need to have five blog goals, nor do you need to break those goals down so low, you can choose as many goals or steps as you like, as is the same with any goals you set. Don't overwhelm yourself with too many goals and leave yourself completing none of them. Set yourself goals you know you have time to achieve, or are within your realm of possibility rather straying off road.

Keep Them S.M.A.R.T

Every time I've studied anything to do with business in school or college, S.M.A.R.T goals where always talked about, and rightly so, they're so much better and more focused than normal goals. What does S.M.A.R.T mean?

S - Specific
M - Measurable
A - Actionable
R - Realistic
T - Timely

For example, a S.M.A.R.T blog goal would be: decreasing my bounce rate by 10% by 2017. I'm being specific because I want to decrease my bounce rate, rather than just improve my statistics, I'm keeping it measurable because I can keep track of my bounce rate through Google Analytics, I'm making it actionable by ensuring there are things I can do to achieve it, I'm keeping it realistic, and I'm giving myself a time limit in which to achieve it.

Consider Short and Long Term Goals

Creating just short or long terms goals can really affect how affect motivation and productivity. If you have mostly long terms goals, you're likely to start wavering when you don't see much affects after all your hard work, say for example if your goal is to get 1,000 new followers in a month and after 3 weeks, only have 300 new followers. Likewise if you have mostly short term goals, you'll keep achieving things, but may never feel as though you've achieved something substantial in the grand scheme of things. Creating a mix of short and long term goals keeps you motivated, but also sprinkles some of the winning feeling throughout your process.

Long term goals tend to be more S.M.A.R.T focused, allowing for more better measuring, and keeping them realistic, where-as your short term goals tend to be the smaller, more manageable steps you take to achieve the overall goal.

If your long term goal is to 1,000 new followers in a month, your short term goals would be the steps you take to achieve it, for example; hosting weekly twitter chats on subjects to put yourself in front of a new audience, guest posting on other blogs in your area of interest with incentives for people to follow you, promoting other peoples work between your own, if not more, to position yourself as an expert, etc. Just because your short term goals may be shorter, (duh) it doesn't mean they have to be any less work.

'But Amanda, I don't have time for goals!'

Do you have time to scroll through Instagram endlessly for two hours? Do you have time to sit, staring at your laptop waiting for an post idea to come to you for half a day? Do you have time where you really wish you had something to do? Then trust me my friend, you have time. If your blog and it's growth is important to you, you'll find the time to sit down and set some goals. Even if it's just 15 minutes, with some pen and paper, jotting down little things you'd like to see change, then you've got time. If something matters to you, you'll find time.

'Okay, maybe I have time, but I don't know what goals I could even have!'

Everybody has something they want to want to try and do or achieve. It can be as simple as gaining more pageviews, more followers, more blog interaction. You might want to get yourself featured on another blog, another 5 blogs, on an expert blog. You might have an itch to create a worksheet, a wookbook, an ebook, and ecourse. You might want to go big and become part of someone's business, you might want to open up a business, you might want to start your own brand new, exciting business. You might want to start smaller by investing in some blog graphics, you might want to buy a new blog design, you might want even want to learn how to create your own. You might want to finally start using some blogging resources you've been meaning to try in forever. Everybody has something they've been meaning or wanting to do, make it your goal.

'Okay okay, maybe it's time to set some blog goals. Where did you say I could get that Planner?'

Right here superstar!

Don't put off making blog goals any longer. If you want to see changes in your blog, change how you blog. Think about what you want to get out of your blog, consider what you'd like to achieve, look at how you can improve your blog and take the time to create some motivating, productive goals.

Do you have any blog goals for 2016, if so, what?


  1. Yay! Thanks for this! I do have to step up my blogging game. I'm planning to start a trnslation business and do some fun collaboration features with other bloggers :) Hope it works out

  2. This is really helpful!! I've decided a couple of goals for my blog in 2016, but the goal planner has inspired me to add a few more. Just one question -- how many blog goals should we pursue at a time? One or two might be too few, I think, but too many might be too ambitious? Any thoughts?

  3. Haha, you're wonderful. XD That sounds like an epic planner!! I...I really don't know what my goals for next year are going to be. :O I had a bunch for 2015 and I kind of hit them all but forgot to look ahead. HAHA. Well I'VE GOT TIME. *starts scribbling ideas* I would like to work out some kind of freebie/downloady thing I could make for humans. I would like to organise my review "bookshelf" tab on my blog, because finding reviews on my blog is like a nightmare at the moment. NOT GOOD. *nods* So that is definitely on the list. But I should figure out a follower or stat aim. XD *trots off to download planner* Thanks, Amanda!!

  4. My goal is to start to get my blog out their and noticed, Since I'm very new I have very few views and well... like 1 follower XD but i still put a lot of effort into my blog, and I want people to know! So my goal is to find ways to put my blog out into the glorious world of book bloggers.

  5. Reinforce your goals by minimizing any negative thoughts you may have about being able to achieve them. Let’s face it, if goals were easy they wouldn’t be very worthwhile.
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  6. I am thankful to you for sharing this awesome article with this helpful knowledge.It is a very useful article about the Short Term Goals.

  7. Great Post!!!This is amazing and really inspiring post about goals.