This week I am going to share an amazing story of ProBlogger Swadhin Agrawal, who is a true inspiration for living a life of full-time blogging. When people are craving for getting a good job in society, Swadhin Agrawal opted for Blogging and taking it to the next level.
So far I have featured a couple of awesome success stories of top Indian bloggers. Here are a few of them.
Let’s explore the wonderful discussion with Swadhin Agrawal.
Swadhin Agrawal Interview (Question & Answers)
1. Please tell us about yourself & your blog.
Hello Santanu and readers, I’m Swadhin Agrawal a full-time blogger and affiliate marketer. I am the founder of DigitalGYD.com and WPChime.com and a few other niche blogs under my new company Value Intent Media Pvt. Ltd.
2. When did you start these blogs? What is the meaning of the domains?
I started DigitalGYD back in 2013. And WPChime in 2017. The meaning of DigitalGYD scales to Digital Guide but since the domain was not available to register and I was just starting with no knowledge to select a good domain I used the letters G, Y & D to create a pronunciation of guide.
For WPChime, I chose WP as it is a blog related to WordPress and Chime because that word is brandable plus I got the short domain wpchi.me as a vanity URL for branded social media sharing.
Yes, of course, I am a B.Pharm graduate from a typical middle-class family. I was expected to run a chemist’s store with the degree but I wasn’t interested in a shop.
I have denied a job because that would mean I would have to leave the house and stay elsewhere. Having no other way I sat in the house thinking about alternate careers.
And then I realized that I had a flair for writing. Initially, I started on a free Blogspot blog (which I migrated afterward to WordPress to get more freedom).
4. What is that one thing, that attracted you towards blogging? Money or Fame or Interest?
I think instead of interest I would choose the word passion. Blogging gave me the ability to express myself, get myself a career option, get the respect from friends and society that I had lost when I had nothing and more than anything blogging gave me an income stream so that I could give my parents and siblings all the happiness they deserved.
That is why I am so passionate about blogging. As my mother says, had I not got a requirement to eat and sleep I would be always blogging.
5. How did you upskill yourself from a Pharma background to a full-time blogger?
Pharma careers are not that bright from the place I belong to. You can either open up a shop or work in pharma industries in other states (Odisha lacks them).
Due to this I always thought there must be something alternate to earn money than the obvious paths we are shown. During that time I didn’t even know the internet exists other than Orkut or Facebook.
Still, I researched and found that we can make a living by freelance writing. And to get clients you needed a blog to showcase your writing skills. That’s when I got into blogging.
I had to assist my father in the shop so I had no time to blog, that’s when I used to assist my father in the day and blog in the night (from 11 to 4:30 in the night). I slept from 4:30 to 7am for most days along with an afternoon nap of 1 hour.
Gradually I upgraded my writing skills (I studied popular blogs, observed what lingo they are using, how they are using copywriting skills to convert readers into buyers) and got into affiliate marketing.
6. For a beginner to enter into blogging, what are the major skills required to get success in the long run?
In my blogging for beginners guide, I’ve summed up this answer in just 3 words. The qualities for blogging success in the long term are:
- passionate about what you do,
- consistent in your work, and
- willing to help your reader community & learn on the way.
These three skills or qualities will help you master blogging in any niche.
7. How many blogs do you run? And how do you manage your time?
I currently have 4 blogs. It would be wrong to say I manage my time efficiently but when you’re passionate about what you do and you have an equally passionate team working with you, time aligns itself.
I wanted to share my blogging routine here but I just saw your next question, so let’s hop on to it.
Yes, I do have a blogging routine. It is very essential to have a set schedule for everything when you’re working from home. Here is my schedule for the whole day and I try to follow the same schedule for most of the days:
- 4:30 wake up
- 5:00 – 6:15 running, walking
- 6.15- 7:00 bath, get ready
- 7-8:30 breakfast, worship, family
- 9:00-1 work
- 1-1.30 lunch
- 1:30-2:00 family time (sit there and talk normal things with family)
- 2:00-2:30 Play simple games and just browse news from my mobile (it helps me relax a bit)
- 2:30-4:30- afternoon nap
- 5-8 work
- 8-10 family time dinner
- 10-11.30: learn new things, research, schedule work for the next day, complete a few pending tasks, etc
- 11.30-4:30 -go to bed
9. What challenges you are facing as a blogger in your society? Or do you think 2019 is different?
I come from a small town and unfortunately, no one understands blogging there. It was very difficult to break the norm and make people understand. It is very easy to say I don’t care about what society thinks, but practically it matters when you’ living in a society.
But when earnings started to pour, people noticed and it did silent some mouths.
As they say, Work hard in silence, let your success make the noise.
Harsh Agarwal, one of my blogging idols and India’s top blogger, has put up an amazing answer on how you can help explain your family or spouse about your blogging job. Wish I had this when I started.
10. Which one is the best blog monetizing technique? AdSense or Affiliate marketing?
For me, it’s affiliate marketing anyway. With equal or even 10x less effort you can actually earn 10x more with affiliate marketing than AdSense.
Having said that, we also have several blogs monetized with AdSense and it is a good source to diversify your income sources.
11. How do you guide a beginner in choosing a profitable niche for AdSense blog & Affiliate Marketing blog?
Bro let’s skip this answer. It might be longer as an answer and I will come up with a blog post for this. Okay?
12. What is SEO according to you and what are the efforts you are putting to rank your articles?
For me, SEO is the art and science to optimize your content (can be a website, PDF, product listing, etc.) in a way that search engines crawl it, understand it and rank it so that users who land on your content return satisfied with all aspects of their problems solved by your content.
I mostly try to write content that solves the user’s intent (I’ve always said traffic is a vague metric. I mean everyone loves traffic but it’s of no use if there is no conversion) and am working towards developing a better UX for readers and also bringing awareness around my brand via interviews, mentions and links.
Of course! Blogging, like any other business, requires investment.
My biggest investment year on year is in “content”. Other than that, we use a plethora of tools to help us manage and grow our blogs. Here is the entire list of blogging tools that we invest in and use.
14. If you have to advise someone, what is the best investment one can make in blogging?
The two noticeable investments that are crucial for any blog that I launch (and advise the same to anyone wanting to invest) are
- content: You need to create as much content as you can without compromising on quality. If you’re unable to manage that, hire someone or outsource your content.
- Hosting & design: You need to invest in a hosting that is fast enough so you get that competitive advantage than your competitors. Similarly, a brandable design that helps your brand stand out is also the key to get noticed and stay in the minds of first-time visitors.
15. These days many bloggers are launching their courses. Do you have any such plan?
Yes, I have noticed that too. As long as they provide value for money there should be no problem whatsoever with course launches.
I don’t have anything much in the cards and would like to launch mine only when I have something to offer that doesn’t already exist in the market. Plus, my current schedules (planning to try my hands on YouTube) do not permit me to venture into course creation.
16. Besides organic traffic, what are the other sources of traffic your blog is depending upon?
I love to diversify my traffic sources. Currently, we have organic as our major traffic acquisition channel but we do get decent traffic from Quora, Pinterest & Facebook (both organic and paid).
We’re also testing some new traffic sources. Let’s see how it ends up with.
I’ll share one of my best tips that’s worked for me like wonders:
- Go to your analytics account and check your top 5 pages with the highest traffic for the last 90 days.
- Create content upgrades (checklist, free guides or even PDF versions of the blog posts) and place them on those pages.
- It will bring you a good and steady stream of targeted subscribers.
18. If someone is starting a blog from scratch, then how will you guide? What would be your expert advice on selecting the blog niche?
Finding a niche is the key to how your blog performs in the long run. Here is a diagram from my blog that sums up the entire concept.
19. Your final advice for them who think blogging is the easiest way to make money online.
Blogging is definitely not the easiest way to make money (if you’re looking for easier ways, go get a job!). But, blogging definitely has more perks than any other professions with the same amount of effort.
Blogging gives you the freedom to live life on your own terms and be your own boss. But, it also requires a lot of discipline to stay focused.
20. What do you think about our blog?
Santanu, I think BloggingJoy is doing perfectly fine. You know how to write articles that solve your readers’ problems. Rank Math vs Yoast is a perfect example of such a blog post solving the dilemma of your readers.
21. Where can our readers follow you?
You can visit me on my blog DigitalGYD. I’d be more than happy to see them and read their comments.
Likewise, they can hang out in our Facebook group for bloggers.