2 glasses with coffee on a table, there is a decorated biscuit on a plate beside the coffees and house plants behind the coffees

Introductions over Coffee #2

5 minutes

Welcome back to Introductions over Coffee, where I provide some guidance and insights for new bloggers, and maybe as a refresher for us all. I will also introduce a new blogger to the community.

For any new bloggers who want to raise their profile, please follow the guidance in my posts and do not spam my comments section.

Beginner’s Tips

This week’s focus for my tips will be to consider how we can make it easier for other people to visit your site so that they can find out about you.

Woman sitting at a table, she is holding a pen to her mouth, her elbow is sitting on a notebook and her laptop is open in front of her, but behind the notebook
Photo by Ivan Samkov: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-working-in-home-office-4240505/

Engage with bloggers

When you are visiting other bloggers you should engage and communicate with them by leaving comments on their site so that you start up a conversation. Others will see how you engage and that you are interested in people and they will get a feel for what you’re interested in. From that, they may decide to visit your site.

It shouldn’t be necessary for you to ever ask someone to visit your site, like your posts or follow. Putting requests like this or sharing your blog url on someone else’s site should be avoided (I and many others would just delete such messages as spam).

If you “like” posts (but only like the ones you read and like) and you leave comments, anyone wishing to check our your site can do so. To make sure this happens easily and smoothly, make sure your Gravatar is set up and works properly.

What is Gravatar

Gravatar is the name we give to your avatar which identifies you in the comments section. This is much more than just a picture that you will use to represent you. If the Gravatar is working properly, it provides a link for anyone wishing to visit your blog/website. I should be able to click on your Gravatar if you leave a message on my comments section and should be able to get access to your blog site and any other sites you have – mine is linked to my blog here, and my YouTube channel.

I would say its important to set up your Gravatar, and here are a couple of posts that will help you in this:

How important is your Gravatar to your blogging persona

Why every blogger should ensure they’ve attached their blog to their gravatar

The second post above will give you some step by step instructions to ensuring you set up your Gravatar properly (Thanks Hugh)

Blog Pages

I’ve been visiting quite a few new bloggers’ sites as I look for potential candidates to feature in this new series but I find it quite difficult sometimes to see enough information about the blogger. If you’re new to blogging, writing your posts is an important part of blogging, but you will also need to think about various pages you will want to include on your site.

About Me

You should have a page which tells everyone about you, and the purpose of your blog. Why are you writing it and what do you hope to get from it. As you progress with your blog you may find this is something you will need to re-write – I’m planning to review mine in a couple of months.

Contact Me

Sometimes I would like to make contact with a blogger – send them a private message or an email. Some bloggers don’t have any way for this to happen. I see some people provide an email address. My blog is set up with a “contact me” form which can be filled in online and its then sent to me by email.

I would recommend all bloggers ensure they have appropriate pages to help others find the information they seek about you on your website and makes it easy for them to navigate. I’ve been informed not having these may put people off following you, so its in your interest to explore this. WP do have online materials on these subjects.

Introducing AJ Schenkman

Table with 2 coffees in glasses with a cake on a plate in front of the glasses.  Behind the glasses are houseplants.
Image by Maria Paredes from Pixabay

This week I want to introduce AJ (AJ Schenkman) of History Made Seamless who has been producing history posts about the USA. Please pop over and have a look at his website for his posts.

I’ve enjoyed chatting with AJ and getting to know him over the past couple of weeks; I hope you will too.


I review the new bloggers I come across to decide who to highlight in this post on a weekly basis, and some have been asking what I’m looking for. I would say the following are my criteria:

  • a blogger who interacts with their readers and responds to comments
  • Are they posting regularly – if someone posts weekly, that’s fine, but I’d probably observe for a few weeks to see how they’re getting on
  • Do they produce quality work – if its text, is it full of spelling/grammar mistakes
  • is there sufficient information to encourage conversation through the comments section
  • If someone regularly spams, they will not be featured. I accept that people can make mistakes at the outset, but they should learn and adapt what they do

I accept that this process is subjective, based on my opinions

To keep up-to-date with my blog, if you haven’t done so yet, fill in the box below to subscribe to Curiosities, Castles and Coffee Shops.


  1. A blogger who interacts with their readers and responds to comments- FGW
    Are they posting regularly – FGW
    Do they produce quality work – FGW
    Is there sufficient information to encourage conversation through the comments section- FGW
    If someone regularly spams- NOT FGW

  2. Something I’ve never used is the contact page or form. When I started blogging years ago I wasn’t crazy about putting my email out there for random people. I know most folks do use that page now so thanks for that reminder Brenda.

    I would also add this regarding the About page: Please update it when things change in your life! I love about pages as a way to get to know the blogger, but not the ones that were originally written in 1995 and haven’t been updated in almost 30 years. What does that say to your potential readers? Probably that you don’t care enough to share who you are now.

    • Thanks Deb. I think that’s a really valid point about keeping your about page fresh.

      I must also admit I set up a new email account specifically for the blog, so I keep everything separate

      • Yes, thank you for the email reminder as well Brenda. I know others who have done the same thing. I’ve put a contact form on my to do list 🙂

      • I know right? After posting that I went back to mine, which now is my static intro page anyway, and made sure it still reflects the me now, which I think it does for the most part. Now I must pop to yours as I’m not sure I’ve ever read it before, and if I have I’ve forgotten so thanks for the update!

      • Haha! You will be glad to know Brenda that after this post I now have a contact page! Super simple but it’s there 🙂

      • Thats good to hear. I just want to get to the summer holidays so I’ll have some time to work on my pages and the website

      • I am so onboard with the motto! 🙂 Also I had no idea you send yourself around the internet to so many many places and platforms- very prolific indeed!

  3. Hi Brenda,
    Meaningful engagement with fellow bloggers is key to getting readers to my site. In my case, I only aim to publish once per month. I also realize my niche blog topic doesn’t appeal to all people.
    Consequently, I don’t expect a great number of followers, and that’s ok.

    • I think that’s it exactly. We need to be realistic and have a proper understanding of what we’re trying to do. As you said, engagement is key. You may only publish once a month, but you are active in the community all month

  4. So important keeping the About page up to date. Reading this made me look. Forgot I just updated about six months ago. Lol

  5. Great information on this post, Brenda. One of the things I now do with the ‘about me’ page on my blog is to tell readers when it was last updated. That way, they’ll know. I make a point of checking it at least once every three months, and usually do a few edits at the same time.

    And your information about having a ‘contact me’ page is vital as some readers don’t want to leave information in the comments section where everyone can see it.

  6. Would that more people doublecheck that their blog is linked to their gravatar. That’s a pet peeve of mine, too. Fun to meet new bloggers here.

  7. Fantastic tips, and thanks for the reminder to update my info! Things I thought were linked, weren’t! The article by Hugh was invaluable as well. Thank you so much for this series, I’m enjoying the new bloggers you discover! 💞💞💞

    • Thanks Dawn
      I think I’ll need to keep a note of who I support as over time it could become difficult to keep track and I don’t really want to feature someone twice when there are a few good new bloggers out there

      • That sounds like a good idea…I know I’d lose track easily…and a list would be quicker than flipping through a bazillion past blogs to figure it out! 💞

  8. Interesting read Brend.
    My best wishes.

    I just wished to stress a few things, which you already covered in your post.

    Many bloggers have no page regarding ‘about me’/contact.This is a sure recipe for a disaster.

    Some bloggers don’t mention their real or fake names, making one, difficult to address them.

    Many bloggers fail to realise the truth that leaving a meaningful comment brings more dividends than expected.

    I am not sure whether the present day new bloggers are aware of blogging awards, a way of encouraging each others. I am not sure if these awards are still popular.

    Worst thing a new blogger does is leaving links of their blog url in the comments and begging/demanding to follow them.

    In my experience I have come across a few who never leave a comment in any of the posts of a blogger, but love to press the like button, as if they have taken oath not to leave a comment.

    These are my personal views.

    Thanks once again.

    • Thank you Philo, and thanks for stressing all these points again. They are Important. I was thinking about talking about likes in my next Introductions over Coffee post

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