5 Blogging Trends To Look For In 2016
In case you missed it, we have less than a hundred days until the New Year.
Yep, you read that correctly.
In fact, as I type this there are 86 days, 21 hours and 22 minutes until the ball drops in Times Square.
It may seem crazy, it may even seem like it’s too soon, but the truth of the matter is that we’re close enough to 2016 to begin to think about trends that will
be taking place on the web.
In the past, blogging trends have been all about creating a strong platform and making money through sponsorships and ad placements.
But as the days tick down in 2015, it becomes more and more clear that the developments of old are not at all what will be used tomorrow.
Much like the web, the blogosphere is filled with constant changes. Readerships frequently fluctuate, advertising interest dwindles, Internet marketing follows newer and fresher rules, and when the web becomes too cluttered with particular topics, traffic all together stops. Therefore, to remain a blogging contender, you must factor in the direction that the blog-world is headed and how you can make your blog stand out from the crowd.
Discover the 5 blogging trends that will be emerging in 2016 and learn how you can help your blog remain up-to-date.
Blogging As A Business Venture
I’ve talked before about how a large majority of bloggers utilize their website as a company calling card for all of their business ventures. Brands such as Inspiralized or SkinnyTaste rely on their blogs to create a following and amass interest in their products—most recently both blog’s cookbook publications. While both of these blogs may have started out as personal blogs that focused largely on semi-private-tellings of the bloggers’ lives, they are now run much like that of a successful business. Take, for example, the aforementioned Inspiralized.com created by Ali Malfucci of NYC. Ali’s story, much like that of any other blogger, follows her from the time she left her high-paying job in the city, to simply following a passion—cooking. Since then, Ali has gained a following of 99.4k followers, written a bestselling cookbook, and created a veggie-spiralizer. Her method of combining social media with her personal blog created the brand that has now given her a successful business to fall back on.
When considering your blog, take a look at the avenue you’ve been wandering down. Is it likely that you should be honing your blog to follow more of a business model? If so, take a look at how you’re utilizing social media, newsletters, and subscribers on your current blog. By zeroing in on the platform you most want to represent, you’ll find the best business outlet that your blog can sustain.
Bloggers As Marketers
We’ve all seen, or followed, that blogger who has the marketing panels on their blog filled constantly by new advertisers. I’d even be willing to bet that we’ve all envied said blogger at one point or another. While gaining advertising interest for your blog takes time, it can also be an effective means for earning a small income through your blog. However, as we enter the New Year, don’t be surprised to find that the trend is actually moving away from paid advertising. Instead, bloggers are taking money into their own hands and turning toward their own forms of advertising instead. Consider, if you will, Simple Green Smoothies. Hailed for their fresh take on the green smoothie initiative, they turned their blog into a product, hosting 30-day green smoothie challenges that use special recipe cards and eBooks to make the transition smoother. By offering their own collections of products (including cleanses, recipe books and cards, and recyclable grocery bags) they are able to turn a product without putting too much focus on a separate company. Take a look at your blog and see what you can do to generate an income that doesn’t involve the marketing panels on your page. Chances are, there’s a product just waiting to be discovered.
Blogging With Creative Outlets
Along the lines of bloggers as marketers is the trend toward creating informative worksheets, templates, calendars, ect…for your followers. More and more bloggers are turning to creative outlets to help their fellow bloggers keep track of things like exercise, meal plans, or even grocery lists. Templates that are free and allowed to be shared are an especially clever way to increase your Internet marketing. If, for example, you create an easy-to-use meal prep template, consider allowing your followers to share it via social media. Photoshop your own logo or copyright information onto the template page and ask that if your followers do share your information to please just redirect them to your site. Chances are high that by offering templates for free, your followers will be more than happy to re-blog and share your information amongst their friends and family.
Bloggers Will Veer Away From the Traditional
Once upon a time, bloggers wrote about their personal lives. However, as we venture into this New Year the trend is winding down. Now, instead of journal-type entries, bloggers are jumping straight to the point. You want to know how to build a backyard fire pit? Chances are you’ll find just the instructions without the added story about why the fire pit may be good for their family. Sure, bloggers won’t skip the pleasantries, but the need for carrying on long, drawn out posts will have died down significantly in the next year. Though blog followers seem to be in two minds about the general shift in posts (some think it makes reading blogs easier and less repetitive while others think it defeats the purpose of a blog), it’s something to consider when heading into the winter months.
Blogs As Websites Not Diaries
With the above shift comes the necessary change in appearance. Where blogs used to be somewhat diary-like in how they were presented—with the newest post being at the top—many blogs are transitioning to a more website-like feel. While many find the website approach to be slightly colder and less inviting, many believe it helps give their blog an air of professionalism, while also making it easier for followers to search through information. With the change, however, comes a need to take a look at your blog and examine whether or not it might benefit from a fresh website design. If you find that the jump might be necessary but are afraid to make it, then choose to look at it as a business opportunity for your blog and platform.
In addition to blogging moving more toward a website-like design, it is also a safe assumption to think that your blogs will be read more frequently on phones and tablets than from the actual computer. If your current website isn’t responsive, then you better jump on board. Unresponsive websites won’t survive in the new climate of blogging, making yours a target for failure in the coming year.