Since I started my blog, I have gotten several questions from other new bloggers inquiring on exactly what a Blog Hop is. When I first started blogging, I too had the same questions and thought it would be a good idea to discuss exactly what it is, how it works and what the purpose is.
First, let’s talk about what a Blog Hop is. This is taken directly from the Inlinkz website which is the tool that allows others to link-up. More on this later.
A Blog Hop is a linky list that is shared between a group of blogs so people “hop” from blog to blog seeing the same list on each blog. Participating in and adding your blog and icon to the list will help generate traffic to your blog.
They are also sometimes called – Link Parties or Link-up Parties, whatever you know them by, they are basically all the same. Blog Hops are usually arranged by a host and several co-hosts and are held on a weekly basis. You join by entering your information into the Link-up list like the one below. This list will be found on the host and co-hosts posts for the Hop.
The link list allows other bloggers to join in and “link-up”. Depending on the theme, the link-up can be of a specific blog post, a blog’s page social media site such as Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest or the main blog page. The theme can vary significantly and is decided on by the hosts.
What is the purpose?
The purpose of not only hosting but also joining a Blog Hop is to create relationships with other bloggers, to meet and interact and ultimately grow your blog through these new relationships.
What are the rules?
The standard rules of a Blog Hop are as follows:
- ‘Follow’ the hosts and co-hosts by the requested method, and this depends on the theme. Example: A Pinterest Blog Hop, the hosts would like to be followed on Pinterest by each of the participants.
- Place the Blog Hop button on your sidebar or your “hop” page” while you are hosting. The button is usually created by the host and includes details on the hop and a link directing others to the Hop page. Sharing and putting the button on your page makes others aware of the hop allowing them to join in, increasing the number of participants and potentially increasing your following.
- Visit other blogs and return their follows. Blog Hops can generate huge responses and hundreds of entries. It’s not expected of you to follow each and every person who links up, however, it is common practice, other than the hosts, to visit a few other blogs, leave comments that you are following them from the specified Blog Hop. It is also common practice to return the follow of everyone who follows you. If you are new to the hop, it is ok to leave a comment on the general hop page letting everyone know you are new so we can visit your blog and meet with you.
- Fees: Most established blog hops charge minimal fees for co-hosting. This is a standard practice due to the amount of time and energy it takes to host a successful blog hop. Co-hosts typically can also expect a good amount of new followers.
My two cents
I highly recommend that new bloggers link-up at as many hops as they can to get their blog exposure. After-all, aren’t you spending the time to dress-up your site, composing your thoughts, taking pictures and putting it all together in your posts for a nice presentation? There are many people out there who can identify with you on what you’re feeling and writing about and it’s a great way to connect with like minds. If you have the opportunity to co-host a Blog Hop early on you will see many benefits.
Ultimately, hops are a way to drive traffic to your blog, be recognized by your picture or logo, it allows readers to connect with you on a more personal level and ultimately growing your readership. In my opinion, there are no disadvantages to joining or hosting a link-up.
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