Start Your Own Blog to Promote Your Coupon Clipping Service
Don’t let the title of this post spook you. I promised to tell you how you could double your sales in thirty days and starting your own blog is one of the best things you can do. I’ve been putting off writing this because I know it’s not going to be for everybody, but hear me out. It’s not as hard as you think and the benefits are tremendous.
Just a Bit of History
Jessica and I started pushing our coupon clipping service on Ebay in January of 2013. As you know, Ebay started really cracking down on coupon clippers in September but they let everyone know in July that the changes were coming. That’s when we decided to start our own blog, in July.
On July 19, 2013 we launched The Happy Couponer Blog and sat around for two weeks listening to the crickets. That was actually a good thing because it gave us time to iron out the kinks and if I remember correctly there were no inserts the first weekend we were up, anyway.
But it didn’t take long before people started to find us. Yeah, we went to Ebay and emailed some of our customers, but most people found us through Google Search when they were looking for specific coupons (which is why I showed you how to create good titles) or they found us when searching for coupon clipping services.
The couponing community is a tightly knit bunch so it didn’t take long for word to spread. By May of 2014 we had more business than we could handle, and that’s when we opened up The Happy Couponer Marketplace to vendors. The rest is history.
And one more thing… Lest you think starting a blog requires a degree in rocket science, I’ve had no formal computer education at all and I barely finished high school. Everything I’ve learned has been through trial and error and I’m the one who designed THCM. If I can do it, you can, too.
Why start your own blog if we’re already doing all the work?
Yes, we do a lot of promoting behind the scenes. We have the newsletter. We work Facebook. And surprisingly, we’re picking up some huge traffic numbers from Pinterest. Our blog also brings in its own share of the traffic. So if we’re doing all this work for you, why should you start your own blog?
If you want to grow your business, having your own blog is the next logical step. Now, keep in mind that there are all sorts of ‘Blogs’ these days and I’ll talk about them in a minute, but for now, let’s look at the benefits of having your own blog.
Benefits of Having Your Own Blog
Increased Online Visibility
There is very little competition in the coupon clipper arena – it’s basically an untapped niche.
One of the reasons our blog is so successful at pulling in traffic is because there are very few blogs out there being run by coupon clipping services. Let’s face it – most clippers work alone and can’t afford to hire help. You’re busy all the time. Who has time to run a blog?
Ninety-nine percent of the coupon blogs you see are dedicated to providing information about printable coupons. (They make money every time someone clicks that link and prints a coupon, but more on that later.)
However, as you well know, there’s a whole mob of people out there looking for clipped manufacturer’s coupons that they can buy in bulk. And nobody is blogging to these people!
Having your own blog that promotes clipped coupons in bulk will tremendously increase your online visibility, making it even easier for buyers to find your shop.
Increased Customer Loyalty
We have dozens of customers who’ve been buying from us since we first launched the blog back in July of 2013. With so many other coupon clipping services to choose from, why do they stick with us?
Because we provide quality information on our blog.
In the beginning we posted lots of information about how to save money with coupons and many of the people who found us – and many who STILL find us – were just beginning to use coupons. Because we gave them helpful information that really worked they learned to trust us.
Now, there are millions of blogs on the Internet and, since you can’t actually speak with someone face-to-face, it’s not easy to put your trust in a blogger. So, when you do find a blogger you trust you usually stick around for the long haul.
You, as a couponer yourself, are chock-full of helpful tips. Some of our vendors even offer coupon classes in their communities. You already have the knowledge it takes to put together an authoritative, trustworthy blog that will bring in a loyal following.
Increased Sales – And isn’t that what it’s all about?
With more people being able to find you and more of them sticking around because they trust you, it only stands to reason you’ll see increased sales in your shop. But how would it work?
Your blog, wherever you decide to set it up, acts as a funnel. Each of your blog posts has it’s own unique URL that appears in various search engines. All of those links lead to your blog.
As you talk about couponing and current matchups and deals you link to your coupons in your THCM shop. Your readers follow those links and order your coupons.
You Can Make More Money With a Blog
A Bigger, Brighter Future for Your Business
Aside from the fact that you can put affiliate ads on your blog to pick up extra money, once you have your own blog they sky’s the limit. Your potential for earning income is limited only by your own imagination. When Jessica and I first started our blog we had no intention of adding vendors. Heck, the thought never even crossed our mind.
Now, here we are, only 18 months later and we don’t even clip coupons anymore. We’ve basically replaced our clipping income with the income we earn from the website.
With a blog you could promote your local coupon classes. You could write your own “How To Coupon” book and sell it on your blog. You can sell advertising space. You could promote printables and earn a fee everytime someone prints one. If you’re crafty you could make and sell pretty binders or coupon wallets. Then you could branch out into other crafts. You could have a recipe blog and link to your coupons for ingredients – and sell your own cookbook, too. The possibilities are endless.
How Do You Start A Blog?
Whoa! That’s a HUGE question. Entire blogs and books and websites have been devoted to how to start a blog so I’m not even going to attempt to answer it in one paragraph.
I will say this, though… The best way to start a blog is just to dive in and do it. It’s one of those things that if you keep thinking about it you’ll be thinking about it forever. There are a million ways to do it and none of them are ‘right’ or ‘wrong.’
And let me just say this, too: We’ve had industry experts look at The Happy Couponer blog and they all tell us we’re ‘doing it wrong.’ They want us to change the graphics. They want us to tweak our keywords. They say we need to get rid of the Aisle by Aisle links and change the categories to something more descriptive.
But ya know what? Our blog and our website work for what we’re trying to accomplish. We have a double-digit conversion rate which is pretty awesome when you’re talking about online sales. Our bounce rate rarely climbs over 36 percent which is almost unheard of. And our ratio of return visitors vs new visitors is 60 – 40, exactly where it should be.
My point is – It doesn’t take an expert web tech to start a blog. All you need is the ability to speak with authority about your topic.
A Blog vs Facebook
There are all sort of free blogging platforms. Ever heard of Facebook? In a way, Facebook can be called a blog, and there’s no doubt that it’s a great way to generate traffic. The problem is, while it’s easy to see what you’re talking about now, it’s almost impossible for your followers to look at information you posted a month ago, or even last week.
One of the most popular posts on our blog was published on December 13, 2013. This post STILL brings in tons of search engine traffic – that’s NEW visitors – and the image was pinned on Pinterest 249 times in the last 30 days! We posted this on Facebook the day we published it on the blog but you’d never be able to find it on Facebook now.
With a blog your information is online forever and readers are easily able to find everything you’ve ever published.
Other Free Blogging Platforms
Blogger.com and WordPress.com are the two most popular, most reliable, and easiest to use free blogging platforms. I’ve used both – many, many times. For ease of use I prefer WordPress.com, simply because I’ve use WordPress more. But Blogger works well, too, and they have some neat modules to play with.
There are lots of other free platforms available – Hubpages.com, Tumblr.com, Examiner.com, to name a few. Some of them even pay you to post. (Trust me – you’ll work your ass off for a pittance!) But there’s two big downsides to using a free platform: You don’t own it so you’re strictly limited in what you can publish, even with Blogger and WordPress, and these sites can disappear without any notice and there goes all your hard work.
Get A Happy Couponer Blog
We also have the ability to set you up with a blog at The Happy Couponer, and if you’re seriously considering starting a blog, this is the way to go. Here are just a few of the options we offer:
Shared-hosting blog on a sub-domain of The Happy Couponer – FREE – Contact me for details
Self-hosted blog on your own domain, hosting provided – Contact me for details
We can even set you up with your own complete e-commerce website, just like The Happy Couponer, and you can have your own marketplace. Contact me for details.
Your Task For Today
Think about it! And contact me if you have questions. Like I said, there’s a TON of information about blogging out there. I’ve even written some of it myself for my own blogs and for others. This is me and this is me and this is me and this is me and…
I know blogging isn’t for everyone but I also know what it can do for your business. So for today, your task is to just think about it… and contact me if you have more questions.