Wanting to start a WordPress blog and actually doing it are two very different things. Taking that leap and starting your blog is a big deal, but you shouldn’t fear it. However, if something is worth doing (and this certainly is worth doing), it should be done properly. That’s why the guide below will guide you through the process and tell you about all of the things that you’re going to have to get right as you move through the process. It won’t necessarily be as difficult as you imagine it to be. A great way to make some extra money is by starting a blog and making money online.
Why Start A Blog?
But why should you start a blog at all? For a start, it gives you a platform to air your views and build a network. You can raise your profile and make sure that as many people as possible are taking you seriously. And, who knows, people might just like what you have to say! That’s always the hope, at least. You should also consider the fact that there is always a chance for you to earn money online from your blog if you start to grow it and build partnerships.
Bluehost is a hosting company that makes it easy to put your fully functioning WordPress blog in place. The information below will help you learn more about what the company can do for you, as well as how it should be used as a part of the overall blog creation process. So, without further ado, read on and learn about how you can start your own WordPress blog today.
Why Choose Bluehost?
First of all, it’s important to consider what Bluehost offers you and why this should be your hosting service of choice. Right now, Bluehost is considered one of the best hosting companies around. That’s something that means you simply have to take them seriously. With a strong reputation and a track record to match it, you can’t go too far wrong.
Pricing tends to be a major issue for people that want to get started in blogging. Fortunately, Bluehost starts at $3.95 and offers a free domain. No one wants to spend too much money on starting the blog because you don’t know how much of that money you will get back in the future. You always have to pay some money for a good hosting service, though. And the prices that you can get from Bluehost is far more affordable than most. There is no need to pay more than you have to, so take advantage of their offer. You can choose from a range of plans that vary in terms of length. Always compare these and consider which is best for you before going ahead.
Start By Registering Your Domain Name
To kickstart the process, you need to begin by registering a domain name. This is something that you can do via Bluehost, but you don’t have to. There are all kinds of websites out there that handle domain name issues. You can often find deals that allow you to get domain names free for a limited period of time. But once that time is over, you will need to start paying for them if you want to continue being able to use them. It all depends on the company you use and which domain you want. You might not get your first choice, but don’t fret over that too much.
You should give some name to what you want your blog to be called, though. Also, you don’t want anything that is going to be too confusing or difficult for people to remember. You should talk to friends about this because they can often point out the problems with your domain name that you don’t even notice. Short domain names are not necessarily better than longer ones, but they do need to be memorable in some way. If they’re not, it could be harder for you to grow an audience.
Head to Bluehost to Sort Out Hosting
Now is the time at which you should start getting your blog’s hosting in place. As identified above, Bluehost offers the best solution for this. So, head to their website and choose a plan that you think is going to work out best for your blog in the long-term. If you’re just starting out and don’t know how your blog will turn out, it’s fine to opt for the most basic plan on offer. For 99% of beginners, this is all that’s needed. But if you disagree, feel free to opt for one of the alternative plans. This is something that is entirely up to you because only you know what you want to achieve.
A 12-month plan is usually better than the month to month options that you can find too. It’s easy to select a package on the Bluehost website and to pay for it. So, this shouldn’t present you with any trouble at all. Be sure to choose a secure password to avoid any security issues for your blog later on. If you didn’t purchase your domain directly from Bluehost, you will need to link your domain and hosting service. This is a key step that you can’t avoid. But if you did buy your domain from Bluehost, you don’t need to worry about this at all. Plus, you get to make money doing what you love.
Setup Your cPanel
Then you need to install WordPress on Bluehost to get your blog properly up and running. This is, of course, the most important step of all, and you need to do it properly. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to do. Head to your cPanel, and choose the option that says ‘One Click Install’. You will then see a WordPress logo that you can click. Once you’ve clicked that, head to the ‘blogs’ tab and select the ‘start’ button. You can then choose the domain on which you want to install WordPress. You will then have to choose a username and password via ‘advanced settings’, and then the installation can begin.
Get Your Theme Right
The way your blog looks is really important. We use Genesis Framework from Studiopress which is the leading theme and framework. After all, this is what people will be presented with when they visit your website for the very first time. You want them to be impressed by what they see, and that will only happen if you have the right theme. The theme will generate the way in which your blog feels and the kind of tone it gives off. This is something that you shouldn’t rush because you need to make sure that you get it right. If you cut corners, you could end up with a theme that doesn’t work for you and your blog.
You don’t have to be a technical expert to come up with a theme for your WordPress blog, though. There are plenty of template themes that you can make the most of if you want to. Some of these are available for free, but the best ones often have to be paid for. It’s the kind of investment that’s worth making if you really want your blog to impress the people who will see it and use it. First, you will need to look at the framework, and then the overall blog design, which is known as the child theme. Alternative would be Godaddy.
Make the Tweaks and Changes in Place So That You’re Happy with How it Looks
Design Palette Pro lets you customize your Genesis theme. Once your basic theme is in place, you can start thinking about what you should do to make sure that your blog looks just the way you want it to. The theme is like the skeleton of your blog. But you need to flesh out with more features and design choices if you want it to look unique and specific to you. It’s not good to have a blog that looks too boring or generic. It will look the same as all the rest, and that just makes it harder to have the blog stick out in people’s minds. That’s not a situation you want to be dealing with going forward.
Use OptinMonster to Convert Visitors
Also, start working on your lead generation to generate repeat users. We use the industry leading OptinMonster. There are so many small changes that you can make to your blog if you want to. Browse through all of the different options until you find the one that’s right for you. These little tweaks and changes can be made continually. That’s the great thing about using Optinmonster; you can always go back and change something later on if it’s no longer working for your blog. Creating A/B testing is a great way to test what is working best for your users. You can also generate more email leads and convert more of your visitors into long term users. The control is in your hands, and that can be really important.
Setup Your Website Security & Plugins
You will want to start with making sure your site is secure. Start with Sucuri which is the leading provider of security server side security and firewall. Plugins and security are essential, and it might be the case that you want only a few plugins on your website. But don’t skip on security.
As for plugins, don’t rule them out completely because there are some plugins out there that could be really useful to your blog. For example, you could choose to use analytics tools. These can be installed via WordPress plugins. And you can then get access to much more data relating to how your blog is being used by visitors and how people are finding it. This is the kind of information that can really help you to improve your blog, so why not use it?
That’s just one example of how plugins can be used to your advantage too. There is no time or space to cover all of them here. But do have a browse through them and do some research. If you find any that you think could be useful to you, make the most of them. There is nothing wrong with taking advantage of them if you think that they will make your blog better than it would otherwise be.
Start Creating Content That Will Grab and Retain Readers
When all of the above things have been covered, you will need to start thinking about what you can do to make sure that your blog is visited by as many people as possible. This, of course, begins with creating content for your blog. It seems obvious to say that content is what people visit blogs for, but you really can’t let that slip your mind. All those design features and plugins won’t save you if the content you’re creating is not good enough to keep people visiting and reading your posts. There is no way around that point, so don’t forget it.
You will also need to come up with some kind of plan that you will help you to retain the readers that you get early on. Make sure that you have some kind of presence on social media, and don’t forget to link back to the website from those profiles and platforms. You need to have an organic flow between your blog and social media if you want to maximize the number of people visiting your blog. It’s really important not to ignore this factor. The harder you work, the better the results will be.
Another good option is to start freelance writing.
Get Feedback and Never Stop Improving Your Blog Going Forward
The work doesn’t end once your blog is up and running and attracting visitors. If anything, this is when the hard work really starts. You have to maintain a high level of quality, as well as a regular output schedule. You won’t be able to grow your blog in the way you would like unless you have a plan for you how you are going to keep people coming back and reading your posts. It sounds easy, but it rarely is.
There are so many competing voices out there in the blogosphere, so you have to work hard to keep hold of your audience. It’s important to listen to what people are saying. You should take feedback seriously, especially when you’re just starting out as a blogger. At the same time, you don’t want to let the critics get you down too much. Simply learn from your mistakes and try to keep improving your blog as you go forward.
Starting a blog can often seem like an incredibly daunting challenge, but it really doesn’t have to be. If you follow the steps and advice outlined below, you will go from having no blog to having a blog that is able to impress in no time at all. So, what are you waiting for?
It’s safe to say that there are few things in life that could change your life.
Winning the lottery is one of them, but it’s very much one of those once in a lifetime, never going to happen kind of situations. And really, it’s not all that smart to pin your future on the success of a competition. However, if you do want to try and change your life, there are a few things that you could actually think about doing. And for this, working on your career is most certainly always going to be one of them.
Change Your Life
If you know that you want to change your life, it’s so important for you to recognize the part that you play in it all. Because you are in complete control of your own life. At all times. You may feel like a victim of circumstances at times, but you’re not. Sure, you can let yourself be lead. You can define yourself by your background or the things that have happened to you. But this is never going to be good for your mind or your future. Instead, when you choose to own your life, your decisions, and your future, you will find that you CAN change your life.
And no, it doesn’t have to be hard or take forever. Sure, if you want to be debt-free and financially secure, it can take time, but it’s not impossible. Choosing a career like blogging can really help you to get ahead. Let’s take a look at how.
To start with, you’re going to want to make sure that you understand all things blogging, and what you need to do to make a success of this. It’s okay to just start if you really want to. But, if you know that you want this to change your life, and you want to be able to take things to the highest success levels, you need to know not only the blogging basics, but what it is that you need to now execute to make this happen.
Choosing A Niche
From here, you then need to select your niche and decide what you’re going to write about or the topics you want to cover. This can seem daunting, but it’s best to either think about what you’re passionate about or interested in, or what’s lucrative that you think you could cover well.
And then you just need to start. You need to choose your blog name, set up a site, register your domain and get hosting, and just begin. Don’t think about it too much, you just need to get things up and running.
Sometimes, it can be getting started that’s the hardest part. Because when you’ve overcome that hurdle and you’re then starting to enjoy what you’re doing, and you’re writing and posting, and really getting into the rhythm of things, it’s fun. But also, you need to make sure that you keep it up. Because it’s consistent blogging that can work out for you here. The more consistent you are, the more likely you are to find success quicker.
Putting The Time In
From here, you then need to commit the time. Sure, consistency is key, but you also need to make sure that you’re doing enough to change your life. Committing fifteen minutes here and there isn’t likely to get you results. So you need to dedicate as much time as you can afford to making this work.
And then, there’s the money-making side of things. A lot of the time, you’re actually going to want to implement these strategies right off the bat. Because you need to be able to monetize your blog at some stage, if you’re going to be able to live off of it, and if you want it to change your life. But as you’re starting to grow, you should then be able to monetize more effectively, and in new ways.
When it comes to your marketing, there’s no right way of doing things. But, you will want to ensure that you’re being consistent with your promotional methods, and that you’re really looking to start building an audience that will be highly engaged and loyal to your blog.
But then also you will have to decide when the time is right to quit your job and take this full-time. And that can be hard. Because you’re going to get to a point where you’re super busy, trying to sort everything out at once, and you’ll be tired and exhausted. But you can’t quit. And then, when your money starts to increase and match your salary, and you know it’s going to be reliable, it’s a good a time as any to then take things full-time. Don’t forget to get a dedicated business number as well.
Continuing In Grow
From here, you’re then going to want to make sure that you’re able to grow. Because when you do go full-time it can be quite scary. You’ll wonder what’s next? How you can top this? So, you’re going to want to think about what you can actually do next to continue to grow. Maybe you want to do some mobile app testing to see if this could be next? Or maybe you want to plan to launch a product. Either way, if you do want to change your life with blogging, you need to focus on the next thing.
Taking Things To The Next Level
And finally, when you’ve made it to this stage, and you can feel your life changing already, you’re then going to want to make sure that you have an end goal in sight. Do you know where you want to take your blog, what you really want to achieve with it? What are you going to do to set and meet the right goals? How are you going to push your income to ensure that you can stay debt-free and actually enjoy financial security going forward? When you address these points, you should find that life is entirely different.
Blogging is a hugely competitive market. New blogs start every day, many bloggers have more than one site, and literally, millions of posts are published, all over the world, every single day. It’s easier to start a blog than it’s ever been before, and if you are good at it, it’s easier to turn it into your job and make a decent living from it than it’s ever been before. But, it’s also harder to get noticed and to stand out in the crowd.
The reality is that most of the bloggers out there trying to get noticed and to carve their own little corner of the internet are making the same mistakes. They are all doing the same things, hoping for the best. Here’s a look at some of the mistakes that most bloggers make, to help you to avoid them as you navigate the exciting world of blogging.
Relying on Social Media
New bloggers think that social media is the only way to get noticed. They’ve heard that you should spend 80% of your time promoting your posts, and only 20% of your time writing them, and they quickly get sucked into a social media black hole.
Social media is a fantastic tool. Social platforms are great places to share your blog posts, but they are also an excellent way to connect with other bloggers, become part of a supportive community, and build a loyal audience. But, over time, most bloggers find that only a small percentage of their page views come from social channels. So, be on social media, but don’t rely on it.
Trying to be Everywhere
Another social media mistake bloggers make is trying to be everywhere all of the time. They want thousands of followers on every platform. They think that they need to be updating and sharing all of the time. But, it’s often a waste of time. If your audience doesn’t spend their time on Facebook, why are you? Thousands of followers mean nothing if there’s no conversion or engagement. Research your target demographic, and focus your time where they spend theirs.
Beginners often go into blogging, wanting to share their stories. It’s usually a very personal thing, which means that designs are often at the bottom of the to-do list. Designs are essential, however. They attract people to your site and keep them there. A professional-looking blog will grab peoples attention and get taken seriously. It will undoubtedly help you if you want to make money from your blog.
If you asked more experienced and successful bloggers what they wish they’d done differently in the early days, many of them will tell you that they’d have taken more time with their photography. Many bloggers return to old posts, later on, adding new photographs as their skills improve. Some even take a photography course to improve. When you look at a blog, it’s often the photographs that tell you how professional the site is, before you even start to read.
Not Learning About SEO
When it comes to running a successful blog, SEO & Website Development often go together. Good SEO is worth your time. The efforts that you put in today will help your blog get noticed not just now, but for years to come. SEO helps your site get found in search engines, it increases your views and users, and it ensures that people can find you when they need to. But, SEO isn’t easy. It’s ever-changing and evolving, and it’s always worth learning everything you can to boost your blog. It’s also worth going over old posts regularly, making changes and improvements to help your website get found.
Not Working with Other Bloggers
Blogging is competitive. All the bloggers in your niche are fighting for views, and every post that you publish will compete with countless similar posts. Many bloggers make the mistake of thinking that this means that they need to be competitive. But, that couldn’t be further from the truth. There’s plenty of internet going around, and working with other bloggers isn’t just a great way to make friends and gain support. It’s also one of the best ways to get your blog noticed, to improve your domain authority and to give you SEO a boost.
Under Valuing Themselves and Their Work
Blogging is still a relatively new industry. It’s certainly a new career path for many, which means that there’s no precise pay scale. When a brand offers you work, it’s hard to know what to charge, and many bloggers make the mistake of working for free, thinking that exposure is worth it. It’s not. If you are working, you need to be paid for it.
Lots of people who spend time blogging do it because they love it as a hobby and they get their enjoyment out of it that way. But there’s no reason why an enjoyment of something has to stop you from making money too. There’s plenty of money to be made blogging, and if yours isn’t making as much money as you want, it’s not because blogs don’t make money; it’s because you’re not quite doing it right. Here’s precisely why your blog isn’t making money yet.
Why am I not making money?
There’s No Long-Term Plan
If you have no long-term plan in place, you’re going to struggle to ensure your blog makes money. Where do you want to take your blog? Which steps are you taking to grow it? When you have a plan, you can incorporate strategies for monetization into that plan. But if you run your blog in a day to day way with little to no forward planning, that’ll be tough.
You Haven’t Fully Grasped SEO Yet
SEO allows more people to find your blog, and when you have more people reading your blog, it becomes a lot more valuable to marketers and advertisers. That’s just a basic fact of blogging. So, it’s probably about time you learned how to do SEO and boost your traffic in the process. It’ll be more than worth it for your blog in the end.
Your Niche Isn’t Properly Defined
If you’re going to make money, whether it’s from selling to your readership or from using adverts and affiliate marketing, you need to know your niche. If your blog is all over the place and has no real focus on a specific topic, you’re going to struggle to find consistent readers and willing advertisers, which is not great from a money making perspective.
There’s No Connection with Your Readers
Many of the most successful bloggers in the world don’t use on-page adverts to make money. Instead, they create additional content such as ebooks, merchandise, guides, courses and webinars to make money. But before you can do any of that stuff successfully, you need to have a really good connection with your readers. Without that, there’ll be no trust and people won’t care enough about your blog to spend money there.
You’re Not Connecting with Influencers and People Who Can Help You
In order to make your blog financially viable, you first need to think about its profile and size. Making it bigger and more popular will obviously make it easier for you to make money from it. And to do that, you need to connect with influencers and people who can help it to grow. Don’t turn your blog into an island; making contacts and connections really does help.
If your blog isn’t making money, don’t give up hope. Improving in the areas mentioned above will make it much easier for you to monetize your blog successfully and achieve the outcomes you want to achieve. It’s not necessarily going to be easy, but it’s worth putting in the work now so that you can reap the rewards later.