“Write a blog” they said.
“Write about something you know”
Which ruled out brain surgery, healthy eating, fashion, politics, employment, fitness, travel, self improvement, animals, personal development, children, technology, DIY, lifestyles, photography, veganism, cycling, … you get the picture.
So what’s left?
Retirement. I know about retirement. And I can write a retirement blog.
This is my blog – written for both you and me, because the act of writing it gives me a reason to research subjects that I need to know about anyway. Also good for my mental health, because that active retirement that I promote requires, you know, activity. Mental and physical.
I use WordPress, of course – “open source software you can use to create a beautiful website, blog, or app”. I use it for the flexibility, support, endless stream of plugins and Facebook groups.
My pages are built with Elementor Pro, a page builder which allows me some artistic freedom (whether I succeed is your opinion) and a decent looking page without knowing too much about code.
My host is Namecheap – as the name suggests, but a perfectly acceptable host for my type of site.
I’ve just qualified for Adsense, so I am exploring the joy of earning .000000005p for every million views or so. Not that I’m ungrateful, but have you seen my fuel bill recently?
My SEO plugin is Rank Math – most bloggers choose Yoast, but I prefer the RM interface and it seems to be easier to understand.
I’ve just started using Tailwind, and early signs of traffic increase are encouraging. The free version of course – rule one for me is avoid the premium version unless there is a compelling reason for an upgrade.
SEO is a subject all of it’s own. I use the excellent Neil Patel for keyword research, and a download called Screaming Frog to highlight any deficiencies, missing tags etc. Not perfect, still learning, always will be. Apparently, it keeps you young.
I also use a plugin called WP Accessibility. It generates the small icons on the right of the screen, allowing the user to control contrast and text size. Web site accessibility is difficult for an amateur blogger to get completely right, but I amdoing my best.
I did some research and soul search before deciding on my blog niche. In the end I deliberatly went for subject that is as wide and deep as I want it to be – an active retirement blog. Health, finance, sociability – the choice is vast. I blog about being positive in retirement.
Perhaps not great for viewing figures (not specific enough) but it keeps me busy and the occasional viewer stops by. Plus, I can throw in the odd bit of humour along the way.
You can contact me via my form – I will respond as soon as retirement allows me so to do!