One of the first things I learned in business school is how to create a SWOT Analysis. Throughout my business education, I was expected to create many, many SWOT Analyses for a variety of companies. It was not that long into my blogging career that I realized running a SWOT Analysis on my blog would be both beneficial and insightful. If you’ve never had any business classes or experience in the business world, you might not know what a SWOT Analysis is (I didn’t prior to business school). No worries! Keep reading and hopefully, you’ll have most of your questions answered.
What Even is a SWOT Analysis?
A SWOT Analysis is somewhat basic, yet, very important business tool companies use to formulate strategies and objectives, as well as find actionable methods to accomplish those strategies and objectives. SWOT is an acronym for the words: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Strengths and weaknesses are the internal factors affecting a company, while Opportunities and Threats are external factors. A SWOT usually comes in the form of a diagram, which is followed by a written-out explanation of each strength, weakness, opportunity, and threat mentioned.
Why Should I do a SWOT Analysis for a Blog?
SWOT Analysis is one of the most overlooked strategies when it comes to blogging. If you aren’t looking to create a fruitful blog with a high ROI, or are just blogging for fun, then you probably don’t need to run a SWOT. However, if you’re looking to be a successful blogger with more traffic and more income, then a SWOT could be a very important tool to help you locate where your blog stands currently, understand your goals, and brainstorm strategies to get you there.
Okay, I’m in! How do I do it?
I’m going to explain each of the four elements of the SWOT Analysis below. You can grab a piece of paper, write out the four elements of a SWOT, think about the current status of your blog, and jot what comes to mind as you read into each of the four categories. I created a 17-page printable SWOT Analysis workbook for you to work through. To download, click here or scroll to the bottom.
Strengths are internal factors that are helping blog right now. Think what is in your control, that your blog is rocking right now? Think about your blogs advantages. Do you write amazingly useful posts? Are you sharing recipes that should be featured on Food Network? Do you have jaw-dropping pictures? Are you a web designer, photographer, or an SEO expert? Do you have skills that you could use to fine-tune certain aspects of your blog? Also, think about the quality things your blog does and maybe even does better than anybody else. Are you doing anything unique, or is the style of your blog so gorgeous that it makes people linger? What brings people to your blog, and what makes them want to stay? These are your strengths. Recognize them and build on them.
Now you have to be brutally honest with yourself. If you don’t get offended easily, ask someone else to be brutally honest with you. What does your blog need to improve on? Do you need better quality pictures? Is your website dull? Do your posts have good grammar? Do you have low traffic? Are you struggling with social media? What are other bloggers doing really well that you’re not doing well? Are you posting consistently?
After you list out your weaknesses, you can come up with goals and strategies to improve them. Create a time plan and a time frame for when you would like to work on each weakness. As you improve on your weaknesses you can cross them off and gain a sense of accomplishment. By the way, if social media is your struggle, I have some posts that may help you out:
The category of Opportunities is the first of the external factors. External factors are a little more difficult to work with because you cannot control them. Nevertheless, it is extremely important to be aware of what is going on.
When you think of opportunities, you can think of up and coming trends. What is becoming really popular? Are there any new social media platforms to jump in? Are there any new features to proven-popular social media platforms (e.g. when IG stories came out, and now IG story highlights). Is there a new trend in photography? Could getting a new tool help your business? Are there changes in policies on your hosting platform, on your influencer platforms, on WordPress, or anything else of importance? Are lifestyles changing? What holidays or local events are coming up that you can use to make a really great blog post, social media post, or even a couple themed posts?
Make sure that you explore all of your opportunities in depth after you jot them down. Create plenty of space between the opportunities and brainstorm about all the ways you can develop them.
Threats can be quite tricky since they are things that are harmful to your objectives that are out of your control. I like to think of threats as a prediction for a thunderstorm. You cannot change the weather, but you can prepare yourself for it. You can get the proper gear or you can make plans to stay inside that day. The key to managing threats is awareness and being proactive rather than reactive. Try to sit down and think through some possible bad situations it might be a good idea to prepare for.
Are there rules that you are overlooking on the Amazon affiliate program that could get you kicked out? PSA: have seen that happen to very well-established bloggers before. What are the obstacles affecting your business right now? Are you having trouble getting backlinks to improve your SEO? Is the political climate unfriendly to you? Are other commitments and or distractions getting in your way of being productive?
Now that you have an idea of what your threats are, you can figure out a way to mitigate the potential damage these threats could cause.
Example Swot Analysis
Here is a very VERY basic example of a SWOT Analysis chart. Preferably there would be 4-8 points. But this is just a quick example to give you an idea of what it looks like.
After a chart like this is created you should write out each of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in more detail and explore them and their implications more thoroughly. If you would like some help on getting this done, download my free 17-page printable SWOT Analysis workbook.
I really hope you found this post helpful! If you are a blogger and are looking to take your blogging game to the next level this SWOT Analysis could be the trick. If you would like even more help along the way, come be a part of one of my Facebook Groups where like-minded bloggers are working together towards success. My groups are:
Thanks again for reading this post! Feel free to leave any questions or suggestions in the comments. Have you ever heard of or used a SWOT Analysis before? Please share below!