You must have chosen to blog because you are passionate about writing, so instead of demanding topics write what you are comfortable with.Write original and unique content as far as possible.
For self hosted blog/website it is required to do some basic search engine optimization in order to increase your viewers through google and other search engines. Also let everyone in your circle know that you have started blogging, may be someone can write a post for you or suggest you a great topic.Get some images you can relate to your post, that makes your blog more attractive. If you are planning to start blogging or have started recently, here are some tips which may be useful to you.
Tips for new bloggers:
1. Blogging software
Choose WordPress as your blogging software. It is the best and has many user friendly features.
2. Install SEO friendly Theme
Choose a wordpress theme which is SEO friendly. My favorite is the Hybrid theme but you can google for more themes.
3. Use SEO Plugin
Install an SEO plugin in your wordpress blog. There are plenty to choose from but I recommend Yoast which extremely powerful and yet user friendly.
4. Remove/Modify Robot.txt
Web sites use the robots.txt file to give instructions about their site to web robots like search engine. You may need to change the content to allow search engine to crawl your website. In wordpress there are plugin like WP Robots Txt which can give you the option of changing the content of the robot.txt file easily.Change the content to all allow search engines to crawl your website.
5. Reading ease
While writing content consider flesch-kincaid readability test. It is good for SEO if you write shorter sentences and reasonably easy words. So you may have to tone down a bit if your vocabulary is above normal ,you are targeting mass viewers anyway. Read more about flesch-kincaid readability test.
6. Meta tags-description
Meta description are commonly used by search engines on search result pages to display preview snippets for a given page.So viewers get a quick idea about your post without opening it. A good meta description will lead him to open your website.Write a good summary of 100-15o words meta description to all pages as well as to each article you are posting. You can use the awesome Yoast SEO plugin to add meta description or manually do the changes. Click here for more on Meta tags(for description and keywords).
7. Meta tags-keywords
These are set of keywords which describes your page or post. When you search with a word or phrase, these keywords are picked up by search engines and put you in that list of result.Use plugins to insert keywords to your post (have a look at this plugin-”keyword statistics”).
9. Blog Topic/ Titles
Choose blog title containing major of your focus keyword. Choose a title which best describes your post as well as consider phrases that are common in search engine. For e.g. You may know the keyword value and number of times it is searched from Google adwords.
10. Share in social website
Twitter , Facebook , LinkedIn , Google+ , StumbleUpon ,Pinterest are the most commonly used social media these days. You have to use a plugin so you may share all your post to your social media pages from your website. If you have installed jetpack then this feature comes bundled with it. Otherwise choose from many available plugins.
11. Facebook Like and Twitter follow
Though not a must but you will feel motivated to see many people liking your blogs and following your articles/tweets. Also there are already created friends, colleagues and followers list who will suggest you on your topics. Ideally the facebook like and twitter follow buttons are to be placed top right corners below your header. It should be visible to all viewers as it also reflects how popular your blog is.
12. Submit site in search Engines
Go to different Search Engine websites and manually submit the URL of your blog. For example to submit in google, you have to sign up and login to google webmaster tools and follow instruction. It may take few days for search engine to crawl your website and index it. You may also ask search engine to crawl instantly and index your pages if you have made some recent changes or posted new articles.
13. Page Rank
It is a rating given to your site out of 10. Higher rating adds great value to your website. It is calculated on the basis of link back from other sites to yours. Quality of back links determines your score on page rank. If the link comes from website with lower page rank then it adds little value thus link from higher the ranked websites will give you greater value.You can check your page rank here.
To avail link back from other sites best way is to
1. Submit guest article.
2. Syndicate Your Blog (Sharing post with other website)
3. Join Forums to accept and offer articles