Ask Jo: Helping Bloggers

Every so often questions and comments come from readers that I think others would like to hear my response to.  That’s when I feature them on the blog.  This is one of those days…

Jeanine asked:
I have asked you this question some time ago, but I don’t think it has ever been answered. I was wondering if it helps you financially if we click on ads on your blog. I know Mary from Country Threads gets some help financially if we click on the ads on her blog. I have been clicking on your ads when I see them, but am just curious if it helps you at all. Thanks.”

Blog readers get money from the companies that place ads on their blogs.  There are two different ways they are compensated.  One is through the ad being there and you seeing it.  The other is if the ads are clicked and there is interaction with the reader.  This obviously pays more.  There are catches to this though.  If a reader comes in and clicks all the ads, the counter notices that the clicks are not organic, and all the clicks are then negated and there is no compensation.

So, as far as ads go, the best thing for you to do is click on something if it is something that interests you.  Click if you want to learn more about whatever it is.  Click how you would naturally click ads….don’t wildly click every ad.  In the end, it is not helpful.

For me, I was on Zenni looking for glasses.  A couple of days later the ad came up when I was checking the blog and I remembered that I forgot to order the glasses.  I ended up hitting the ad and ordered my glasses.  This is a great way to use an ad and is super helpful.  If you haven’t tried, Zenni for glasses, they are awesome.  More coming up about that in another post.

As far as closing ads, close them if that makes reading the blog post more convenient to you.  I know the ads are annoying.  I totally get it but as I’ve explained before, they are necessary so I get some type of compensation for all I put into the blog, and trust me, it’s not a lot!

So, I’m sure you’re wondering how you can really help bloggers then.  Well here are some suggestions…

1-  If a blogger sells products or have an Etsy shop or something similar, occasionally buy something from the blogger.  You could buy a pattern from our shop.  You could buy goat milk soap from a blogger who blogs about her goats and sells the soap.  That’s the surest way to help both yourself and the blogger.  The blogger gets the money.  You get something you’re wanting.

2- If the blogger has an Amazon link, and you want to buy something from Amazon, click on the link on the blogger’s page that takes you to the Amazon page.  Amazon pays bloggers a referral fee.  So if you come to my blog and see that I’m reading a book that looks like something you want to read and you want to buy it, click the link that takes you to Amazon and purchase the book.  I get a small commission…like 15 cents or something like that on a purchased book.  If you’re there and buy Christmas gifts or something like that, I will get a commission on that as well.  You don’t pay any extra for the product.  If you saw the product on my blog, go away from my blog and later go directly to Amazon and purchase the book, I don’t get a commission.  So when you can, use the links to make purchases.

3-  One of the biggest and best ways to help bloggers is to credit the blog when possible.  Be part of their social media team behind the scenes.  If you make a quilt from one of our patterns, post it on your social media but remember to credit us for the pattern.  It will help other people find our blog and grow our readership.  That is super helpful.

Other ways along the same idea are this…Let’s say you belong to a quilting forum.  Someone there says, “I’m looking for a good jelly roll pattern.  Does anyone know of one?  You might remember our Jimmy John pattern.  You could find the link and link it into the forum.  (You can find the pattern HERE-it’s a free pattern)

If you are at a quilting retreat and someone asks about what blogs you read, tell them about our blog.

Anything you can do to share our blog is welcome.  We really appreciate it when you share our blog with others.  It truly is helpful.  All of you are on our behind the scenes social media team. You truly are.  The more you share and tell about our blog, the more it is seen!

I had a blog reader write to say that she had told three of her friends about a recipe I posted as they had never heard of it.  That was awesome!!  She sent them all links to my blog.

4-  Many blogs have a “Buy me a Coffee” button or something like I have.  If you donate, it really helps.  I got through all of October without paying for any postage.  It was so appreciated especially after my postage bill for September was over $300.

Thank you for considering a donation to cover charity quilt shipping costs.

Jean asked, “Along the same line as Jeanine’s question. Does it help if we leave comments.? I’ve tried to google this in the past and never come across any information.”

If you leave a comment on the blog, it is helpful.  I read them and then I know it’s a topic you might be interested in hearing more about.  Others love reading your comments.  It makes the post more engaging and I don’t feel like I’m talking to myself all the time but monetarily it doesn’t make a difference if you leave a comment on the blog.

In 2016, I wrote a post about hamburger gravy.  You can read it HERE.

Our kids grew up eating it.  I wrote a post about it and asked readers if it was a regional food or not.  I ended up getting more comments on that post than I’ve ever had.  Everyone wrote in saying if they had grown up with it or not.  Others asked and polled their husbands to see if they grew up with it.   Readers had so much fun reading through all of the comments and had a great time doing it.

As I said, comments are fun and on a personal basis I love reading them, other readers love reading them but they are not money-making.

BUT…leaving comments and liking a post on Facebook is AWESOME and helpful.  Facebook is different.  I know many of you have “Liked” and “Followed” Jo’s Country Junction on Facebook.  Find us HERE.

Facebook does things differently.  I make a post on Facebook.  The powers at Facebook only send it out to about 1/4 of you who are followers.  If those people like or react to it, or leave a comment, Facebook deems it appropriate to show it more of the people who “follow” Jo’s Country Junction.  So they send it out to 1/4 more of the “followers”.  It continues that way…more likes, reactions, and comments means more people will see the post.

I’m sure if you are a Facebook user you have been scrolling and suddenly see a severe weather statement.  You look not realizing there is suppose to be bad weather.  Then you look again and see that the post was written two days ago.  UGH.  What happened is that the post finally got enough comments and likes to meet the magic number so it was sent out to more people…thus you are getting it several days late.

Liking and commenting on Facebook helps you keep the page in your feed more often and helps us reach the metric needed for the post to be sent out to even more people.  If you never like or comment on a post from Jo’s Country Junction, eventually, Jo’s Country Junction will no longer show up in your feed.  So like and comment on Facebook whenever you can.  It’s easy and it’s helps spread Jo’s Country Junction out to others.

I do have to say this…ad rates for bloggers have dropped astronomically since Covid hit.  All of the big companies are slashing their advertising to try to stay afloat.  So there is not the demand for ad space that there previously was.  Advertising dollars are a supply and demand business.  With no demand, there is no money…so, bloggers who have relied on advertising dollars are being hit hard.

I expect many bloggers might quit blogging if this keeps up.  If you notice, lots of bloggers are trying or doing things they haven’t before.  Me, I’m trying Youtube  (Please link and share those videos if you get a chance.  It would be so helpful- find our Youtube channel HERE)

Bloggers are all trying to stay afloat.  With your help along the way, cheering us on, using Amazon affiliate links, sharing our blogs with friends and fellow quilters, liking our posts on Facebook or any of the other things I mentioned are so helpful.  I know you all want us to be around for a long time.  I love blogging and plan to be here for as long I’m around.

So thanks a bunch to Jeanine and to Jean for asking these timely questions.  I love that you want to be a help to bloggers.


20 thoughts on “Ask Jo: Helping Bloggers”

  1. Christina Wheeler

    Very informative. Good info to know. I think Facebook’s system is wrong. If I collection should get all of the posts. The re policy is just wrong!

  2. Ahh, I also wondered about how the ads help you. Good info. A side note, Jo, did you get a small box from me? I lost the receipt and can’t track it. Carla in MI

  3. Thanks for the information. For those of us who aren’t into blogging this is really helpful. Now I’ll be more careful clicking on ads and liking onFB.

  4. Thanks for the explanation on clicking the ads! I was clicking all of them thinking I was helping! As far as Facebook goes, I have marked your blog as something I always want to see. When you post, it shows up at the top of my feed. I try and like your posts on Facebook and now I will continue to do so. Thanks for all your share with us.

  5. Lynne Nicholson UK

    I have a blog that I don’t want to earn money from as it is sharing my perspective of life as someone who is registered blind with a side order of Charles Bonnet Syndrome… it exists for me to educate others on treating me as I’m still human after losing most of my sight just over 4 years ago, however it’s interesting to learn more about how you blog and the role the ads play. Thank you.

    1. Lynne that is so awesome that do this. I can only imagine the life change it would be to become registered blind. It’s awesome that you share your story as I’m sure it helps many others to learn you can still have a good life!

      1. Lynne Nicholson UK

        Jo, I’m sure you have found at different life stages you cope with challenges differently. If my sight loss had happened when I was younger I would probably have struggled to cope with it but it happened (or at least was confirmed and the cause diagnosed) 6 years and 2 days after my granddaughter was stillborn, 2 years and 4 days after my big sis passed away unexpectedly aged 55.5, and 18 months after my younger sister passed away unexpectedly 5 weeks before her 50th. This made my sight loss a piffling nuisance but not a tragedy.

        I have technology on my side (phones, tablets and computers all have accessibility features built in, not only for those with sight loss, but also for those with hearing loss, and limited motor skills) apps on my phone help me travel independently, shop independently, should I need a human to help there’s apps with volunteers who will help me find that pesky pill I dropped on the floor, or I can video call family or friends if I need help of a more confidential nature. If letters arrive I have an app to help me read them. That hand written birthday card the same app in a different mode will do it’s darnedest to read the scrawl (of course sometimes it gets things a little wrong but since I don’t think a church meeting would be for “testimony and rejection” I think my guess of reflection would be the correct one).

  6. Thanks for this post. I learned several new things. I, too, had been clicking on most of the ads, so I will pay attention to that from now on. Thanks so much!

  7. Thanks for posting about the ads, I’ve wondered about them also. I have a question kind of along these same lines: If we PIN something of yours onto Pinterest does that help you in any way?

    1. YES. It does help a lot when you pin things from the blog. People see it on your boards and they follow the pin back to the blog. THANKS SO MUCH for doing that!!

  8. For the last 5 years, I’ve been writing a monthly column for my quilt guild’s newsletter, with links to four or five interesting posts from quilters’ blogs. You’ve been featured quite a few times, Jo. Pinterest is often frustrating to me, because ideas get pinned and re-pinned without linking back to the original creator. It only helps the creator if you can go to her site.

  9. Thank you for the information on how the Blog works and how we can help you. I did buy the silicone covers after you talked about them, they are wonderful.

  10. Don’t assume the ads are a nuisance. I love getting ads on a site that matters to me. Even if they are ads for something I may never buy, they are, to me, kind of like word-of-mouth advertizing, or like window shopping with a friend. And I am more inclined to trust the product because it appeared in my blog-pal’s site.

  11. This brings to mind a question I have had about You Tube. Does skipping ads as quickly as possible affect a Tuber’s income? Should we watch the entire ad? Thanks!

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