Starting a profitable blog is easy IF you follow the right guides/steps. It can be seem unnecessarily complicated when you don’t know how to go about. I’m here to help you do it since I have done it before several times actually. I have started about 6 blogs but I didn’t start taking blogging seriously until recerecently. If you follow these steps I’m about to talk about, you will have a successful money making blog. First of all, let’s quickly go over reasons to start a blog.
Few Reasons to Start a blog
1. To help and inspire people
Solve your readers problems and inspire them in the process.
2. Make new friends.
Meet your readers and fellow bloggers. Make meaningful friendships and connections.
3. To make more money and maybe quit your full time job?
4. You will learn new skills.
Like photography, design, Photoshop, marketing etc
5. Self promotion and opportunities.
6. You will become a well-rounded person
7. It’s easy! I will show you how now.
Those were a few reasons to start your blog today. Now, here’s how to do that.
1. Pick a niche.
A blog niche is simple the general topic/theme of the blog posts. You should pick a niche that really interests you so you will enjoy blogging. Here are a few niches to consider:
• Women’s fitness
• Paleo diet
• Weight loss
• Muscle gaining
• Personal style
• Gadget reviews
• DIY crafts
• Home décor
I can go on and on. I might just do that in another blog post because blog niches are endless. Pick a most suitable one for you. If you can’t pick a niche, that doesn’t mean you can’t blog, just start with your top 2 or 3 niches and see what your readers like best. After picking a niche, you want to start getting articles ready for your blog and as many as you can. Your articles should be well written and loaded with helpful information for your readers. Remember you are writing it for them not for you.
2. Pick a domain name
Your domain name is your blog address. It shouldn’t be too long, it should be easy to remember, brandable and catchy. It’s the first impression your blog has to make. Jot down ideas and ask for help from friends. It doesn’t have to be keywords loaded, don’t even do that. I have come with a few ways to come with a fine domain name.
• Your name: this never fails .
• Your name and an adjective e.g savorysharon, sincerelyjules
• A food item and a fashion item/noun e:g cupcakesandcashmere, lattesandliners, lipstickandpixels
• A number and a noun e:g thirteenthoughts, twelveskip. Give your blog a cool name but don’t sleep on it.
3. Purchase hosting
Hosting is that online space that houses your entire blog. Although there are services that offer free blog hosting namely: blogger and wordpress.com but you do not want a free hosting especially if you want to start a profitable blog. Why? You ask. Because:
• Its not really yours as in you don’t own it. If you have a blogger blog, Google can decide one day that you violated their regulations and then take your blog down along with all your hard work.
• You can’t exactly monetize your blog.
• Its not very flexible of customizable. You are going to be needing lots of features as you start blogging. Features which may not be readily available on your free blogs.
These bullet points apply go blogger as well as wordpress.com(the free hosted wordpress platform).
• You might end up spending more for wordpress.com than with a self hosted blog. As you blog, you want to be adding more functional features, wordpress.com charges for more features.
To avoid all these, what you want is wordpress.org(self hosted platform).
Why pick WordPress.org?
• With wordpress.org, your blog is fully yours, no one can take it down without your permission.
• You can monetize your blog as you want and customization is on an epic level with lots of themes and plugins to choose from.
• WordPress.org is ‘free’ (though you pay for your own hosting)
• With plugins, you can literally make your blog do anything! Whoosh. Want your users to be able to shop or see your Instagram feed from your blog? No problem. You just have pick a good hosting company. A good hosting company should save you money by providing you with the best rates, plenty of storage and bandwidth plus a free domain name. A good host should also save your time by making things easier for you when setting up your site and by providing excellent 24/7 customer support that won’t make you feel stupid. You can start a blog with $3.95 per month with Bluehost.
You can set up your site in no time with Bluehost’s 1-click installation and save money with a free domain name you get from them.
Pick the most suitable plan with bluehost
You can now select your domain name after after picking a plan. You will get it free with bluehost. Not decided yet? Leave the box empty and go to next, you can pick out a free name later so, no need to hurry this process. Take your time.
4. Install WordPress.
Install wordpress the easy way using bluehost 1-click method. Find wordpress at the website section of your bluehost cpanel/hosting section and click the install button. Easy or easy.
Now start playing around with wordpress.
Themes control the appearance of your blog while giving it added functionality. You can either go with a free themes from the wordpress.org directory or purchase one for your blog. Your blog theme should be responsive with clean fast loading code. Creative Market has lovely responsive themes with clean code for your blog. Creative Market not only has themes, there are a lot of amazing fonts, graphics, logos, creatively designed goodies and everything you need to rock your blog. My theme shop as the name describes also has a huge selection of clean coded responsive themes for any blog niche. After purchasing a theme, you can install it from the theme add new section under your themes in the WordPress dashboard. Go to your dashboard to find themes under the appearance section. Tweak your theme to your satisfaction by customizing it, adding widgets, menus, headers, colors and more. Find all these in your appearance section.
Install functional plugins
Plugins a little software files that can make your blog do anything. For example you can enable easy social media sharing, back up your website, make your site faster and produce easy contact forms with a plug in. Search for the plugins you want by going to Add new under the plugin section in your dashboard. Some relevant plugins to install include: akismet, yoast, W3 total cache and shareaholic. My theme shop also has a collection of rich functional plugins for your blog.
5. Start posting.
The yoast plugin helps you write better blog posts, configure the plugin and find post section under the dashboard, click add new to start posting your articles. View my blog post ideas for your new blog.
6. Get traffic.
It’s not enough to start posting, you need to let people know you have a blog and you can do that with social media traffic such as pinterest and Instagram. My pinterest guide and review is coming soon. Another way to get traffic is by commenting on other blogs. Share your opinions and connect with other bloggers.
7. Make it Profitable
There are several ways you make your blog Profitable or income-yielding, These ways include:
I. Affiliate marketing: Affiliate marketing is done by adding purchase links to your blog post so that when someone buys through the link, you earn a small commission. Affiliate programs include: shareasale.
II. Ads: This works by displaying ad links on your site in form of text or banners. Advertising companies such as AdSense, amazon associates, media.net and infolinks will pay you as you display ads on your blog.
III. Sponsored and partnerships: A company pays you to write a review about their products in a blog post.
IV. Your own products: Sell your own digital products on your blog
Select the most suitable way for you to earn and get started. You can sell digital products such as ebooks, graphics and photography.
Combine 2 or more of these ways and start earning. I will be more than happy to answer any questions.
You can contact me or comment below. I hope with this guide, you can start your blog the right way.