Pet Blogger Challenge 2016
Another new year has begun, which is a perfect time for bloggers to look at the past year and to consider any changes you might want to make in your blogging in 2016. It’s also time for the Pet Blogger Challenge 2016 (the 6th annual), meant to celebrate, motivate, educate, and connect Pet Bloggers worldwide. This is a blog hop, where pet bloggers and curious readers alike are able to visit others pet bloggers’ websites to share in their successes, learn from their failures, and get to know each other better. It’s like a block party!
Pet Blogger Challenge 2016
Last year’s Pet Challenge went very well, with 71 pet bloggers participating, sharing ideas, and supporting one another. This year is sure to be as successful, and we hope you enjoy the party! Oh! Happy New Year.
How it Works
The host of the Challenge is the Go Pet Friendly Blog. They furnish us with the challenge questions which are designed to have us contemplate how far we’ve come in the past year, and to reflect on where we want to go in the new year.
Whether you’re a pet blogger or any other type of blogger, I hope this challenge will motivate and inspire you in your own work, whatever it may be. Let’s celebrate our successes of 2015 together and look positively toward the future.
Are you ready?
Pet Blogger Challenge 2016 Q & A:
1. How long have you been blogging? And, for anyone who is visiting for the first time, please give a quick description of the subject of your blog.
I’ve been blogging for 4 years now, although Animal Bliss is actually 2 years and 3 months old. My previous blog was a totally different niche, and I no longer keep that blog active. My description of Animal Bliss goes like this — “a very cool blog about animals.” That includes wild and domestic animals of every kind.
2. What is the one thing that you accomplished during 2015, either on your blog or because of it, that made you most proud?
My goal in 2015 was to increase my readership, and that has been accomplished. Animal Bliss has gone from having 7-8000 visits/month in early 2015, to over 30,000/month today! Not bad, huh? Also, my newsletter subscription mailing list has doubled in a year.
3. Which of your blog posts was your favorite this year and why? (Please include a link.)
It’s difficult to choose just one favorite blog post, but if I must, I would say: “Reasons Why You Should NEVER Declaw Your Cat.” The reason it’s my favorite is that it has opened up a lot of eyes to the issue of cruel procedure cat declawing, especially those considering getting the procedure done. I’ve been an advocate against declawing for a long time.
4. A common theme from last year’s challenge was that many of us wanted to increase the size of our audiences. Whether or not we intend to monetize our blogs, it seems we’d all like to reach more people. It feels good to know that we’re connecting with others, sharing a laugh or supporting a cause, and it’s motivating to see those numbers grow! What is one thing you’ve done in the past year that has brought more traffic to your blog?
The answer to question 2 described my success in increasing the size of my audience. This was accomplished by a systematic and steady sharing of my blog posts. All posts get shared on Facebook, Twitter, animal groups on Google+, Tumblr, Triberr, Pinterest, Flip.it, StumbleUpon, Reddit and . I may be missing one or two. I often go back to older posts as well and re-share them as well. Recycle, if you will. I belong to several Facebook groups for pet bloggers and we share each others posts. That helps a LOT.
5. Which of your blog posts got the most traffic this year? Why do you think it was so popular? (Please include a link.)
The most popular post was,”Do Chameleons Make Good Pets? What You Need to Know” I’m not sure why, really, since chameleons (lizards in general) aren’t a popular pet like a cat or a dog. People are just curious, I guess, when they see it at the top of the Most Popular Posts list on the right-hand column of my blog.
Strangely, my second most popular post is “Bearded Dragon Brumation Symptoms, What should I do?” Another lizard post. Who knew? I love this post though, because I have a Bearded Dragon named Shirley, and she is going through the brumation process as I write. (It’s like a winter hibernation, although not as deep.) First-time dragon owners are curious when their dragons start to get slugging and stop eating, and so on, and they freak out. My post puts them at ease and explains what is going on.
You’re welcome. 😉
6. What is one blog that you read religiously – other than your own – and what makes you such a devoted reader? (Please include a link.)
I tend to read other blogs and news websites concerning animals. National Geographic, Animal Planet, and Wildscreen Arkive, to name a couple. I get a lot of ideas for my own posts by reading these.
7. What resources do you rely on to enhance your technical, writing, photography, social media, or other skills that improve your blog?
For the technical side of blogging, I pay attention to Neil Patel, a guru, in my mind. I like to keep up with what’s going on with Google and Facebook, especially, since they’re my two biggest sources of readers to my blog. Google in particular. Neil Patel is an analytics expert, among other things.
8. What is the best piece of advice you can offer other bloggers?
To new bloggers, I say, “Just write.” Don’t worry if it’s perfect or not. If you do, you’ll quit before you start. So just write. Have fun with it. Ask yourself why you want to blog, and find out all that you can about it. But don’t wait until you “know it all before you write”. Write as you learn. Oh — and visit other blogs!!! Some will visit you back, and that’s exactly what you want.
To bloggers that have been blogging a while — awesome! Keep having fun. Try not to make blogging a drudgery, or a job. Be easy on yourself.
9. What is your vision for your blog in 2016? Do you have specific goals?
My vision for 2016 is to write more about wildlife, I think. That was my focus “in the beginning” and then last year I was drawn to write more about cats and dogs, seeing as I did a lot of pet-product reviews and giveaways. I don’t know … we’ll see where it goes. I plan on creating a survey, asking my readers what they want. Their wish is my command.
10. You have the attention of the pet blogging community – is there one blogging challenge you’d like help with, or one aspect of your blog that you’d like input on?
I would like to know what you think of the layout of my blog — the colors, design, etc. Also, what sort of posts would you most like to see here.
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As always, thank you for taking the time to visit my blog!
A QUESTION FOR YOU:
Are YOU a pet blogger?
(Leave your link.)
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It’s just sexy!
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18 thoughts on “Pet Blogger Challenge 2016”
I’m going to have to check out your chameleon post! My six-year-old daughter has been begging, and from the research I’ve done and the local reptile expert I consulted, it doesn’t sound like the best idea. I think she’s envisioning walking around with it on her shoulder 24/7. In any case, congratulations on your success! I enjoy your posts very much.
Thanks for visiting my blog, Kristen. I’m going to have to agree with you, I think, that your six-year-old daughter getting a chameleon isn’t the best idea. Unless, of course, you want to do all the work. Chameleons aren’t the easiest critters to care for. I’m happy to hear you’re doing your research about it. You’re a wise woman. 😉 All the best! I’ll go visit your blog in the morning. Peace
I would like to read more about wildlife. There aren’t many bloggers doing that. Good luck in 2016! you accomplished quite a lot with your traffic in 2015. Way to go!
Hey, Jessica! I’m glad you stopped by. I’ll go by and read your Pet Blogger Challenge post in the morning. It’s been fun visiting other bloggers and finding out what’s going on and to hear of everyone’s successes. All the best to you in 2016 as well. Peace! Hello to your weiners for me. 😉
This is great news. I am glad for all your success !
Wow, I am so impressed with your growth over the past year! I think you have a really great niche in your writing about animals other than cats and dogs. There is definitely a large audience looking for that information.
I am a big fan of Neil Patel as well!
Hey, Kevin! Thanks for stopping by my blog! I’m glad you like my site. I like yours too. Off to go read what you have to say about Raw Paws Bully Sticks now! Take care.
Congratulations on your success with the blog in 2015! I follow Neil Patel and QuickSprout too. He’s a great resource for growing your blog. I like the tri column design of your blog it’s a different look then most other blogs. There is a very good post on QuickSprout about left vs right sidebars. All the best to you in 2016!
Hey Colby. Thanks for stopping by to visit my blog. I see you did the Pet Blogger Challenge too. It’s great to stop and look back on things, isn’t it. You’re right about QuickSprout. I forgot about them. Come back soon! 😉
I’ve really enjoyed stopping by your blog this past year and reading articles that weren’t just about dogs. You have a lot of interesting topics and I always learn something new here, I love that!
Congrats on increasing your traffic last year and I like the design you’ve picked for the blog. The menu and various areas are easy to find and very pleasing to the eyes. I’m not a big fan of some of the newer designs that make you work to find the latest post or area you’re interested in. Maybe I’m a lazy user, but I think usability should always be the first consideration in design. Great job here! 🙂
Hello, Elaine. Thanks for stopping and taking a look at my Pet Blogger Challenge post. I see you’ve done it too and I’ll go there next to read what you had to say. Thanks for your feedback about my site design. I’m glad you find it usable. 😉 Take care, and all the best.
Nice to learn more about you. Thank you for sharing tips to gain followers. I like the layout of your blog.
Thanks for your visit, Ellen. 😉
Neil Patel is one of the best. Great idea 😉
Wow, amazing about your page views. I will certainly take your advice as I’m hoping to increase my views this year as well. Also, will check out Neil Patel. I’ve heard several bloggers mention him today.t
Yes, do check out Neil Patel, and QuickSprout too. Good luck with your blog in the coming year. Peace