As your blog gets bigger the demands on your time will keep on increasing – something will have to give.
However outsourcing is the process of paying someone else to take on the various tasks on your website and thus freeing you up for other projects.
In this article in our series on 29 debates bloggers have about blogging we explore whether this is a good or a bad thing for the health of your blog?
What Can I Outsource on My Blog?
There are all kinds of tasks that you might want to pass over to someone else, everything from day to day running of the site to one off overhauls. These days it is relatively easy to find skilled professionals via the Internet who can help you with all kinds of tasks.
Here are some popular outsourcing jobs:
- Content. This is probably one of the most obvious things to pass on to someone else. You can hire a writer to produce one off articles or even stream regular news articles onto your site. The choice is yours. Most content creation services will provide a fixed price for a writer of a certain skill level to produce a fixed number of words.
- Comment Moderation. It can get very tiresome dealing with all the spam comments that come your way. The auto spamming software can be quite easy to deal with but many spammers are posting comments by hand – and in some cases they are outsourcing their spamming to cheap foreign workers!
- Forum Moderation. As above, if you allow user generated content on your site you need to keep an eye on what is being posted. This can begin to take up hours and hours as your site become more popular and this time is probably better spent doing something else.
- Redesigning your blog. Most of us aren’t talented website designers, or even if we have that artistic talent we don’t have the time to fiddle with the finer points of CSS tweaking. Hiring a professional designer can be a great way to give your blog a new look.
- Link building. Yes, even this process can be passed on to someone else! Keeping a steady stream of links coming into your site is crucial to high search rankings. Blogercise techniques suggest that you should be building links naturally, but if you are finding it hard to get going this is a job that can be outsourced.
Almost anything that needs to be done round your site can be outsourced to a third party – but you need to make sure it makes financial sense!
Is Outsourcing Blog work Cost Effective?
Getting someone else to make your content seems a bright idea on the surface, you get to spend your time on other things – working on that new site, or perhaps just taking a break from your hectic life – whilst your blog continues to grow.
When spending money on these activities the one thing you always need to keep in mind is your Return on Investment (or ROI). Sometimes this is easy to measure, on other occasions you’ll just have to use your instincts – but either way, you always need to think about whether you are getting value from spending money on building your blog.
Tips for Outsourcing Blog Work
I prefer to do as much of the blog work as I can, this is for two reasons:
- It gives me total control over my blog and content
- I enjoy it! Website building is a hobby for me so it would be crazy to get someone else in to do it for me!
However I have outsourced a few pieces of work for personal sites, but was involved with outsourcing more heavily in my professional career when I used to work at a well known consumer web site.
Link Building: This is something that I saw in my professional career, it became a high priority when our CEO suddenly became obsessed with search engine optimisation and over night all our projects got dropped and switched to search related activities!
If you chose to outsource link building then I would first check very carefully exactly how and where your partner will build these links. I would then have a serious think as to why you need to pay money to build links – why isn’t anyone linking to you naturally?
Content: This is something I have experimented with myself on a few occasions with mixed results. The quality of the posts were not even close to the high standards of my own posts and I would normally have to re-write and enhance the content before I could publish, and these were supposedly from the “top quality” authors on the company’s books!
On the plus side the articles did do the job and gave a site I wanted to get up quickly a small boost. Unfortunately the standard wasn’t good enough to build something to be particularly proud of. But I guess that’s why these authors aren’t running their own blogs!
So Should I Outsource my Blog Work?
I guess it depends on your approach to blogging. If you are trying to build a blog that you can be proud of and it’s something that you love doing then I would try to do all the work that I could. Of course there are some things that I just can’t do to a professional standard and I would definitely ask for help there. But otherwise I want to everything myself!
If you are looking at churning out sites and building up as much Internet real estate as you can in as short a time as possible then buying in help will surely give you a boost. Just be very careful you don’t invest a lot of cash without seeing any return on that investment.
In time you might want to run your fledgling empire more like a business and in that case outsourcing will start to make sense. You will need to keep a close eye on your sites though and be sure that you don’t compromise on the things that made your website a success in the first place!