Well, second best day.
The real, the actual best day of my life is when I started earning from it.
Today, I can’t tell you enough just how grateful I am that I started down this path. Blogging has enriched my life in so many ways. It has allowed me to quit my job, and to work instead from the comfort of my home (or from anywhere I choose, really) while earning full-time in passive income.
It has enabled me to dictate just how many hours I spend on working, and to achieve that oh, so elusive work-life balance.
In fact, blogging has allowed me to take back my life, to take control of it, and to get more out of it every single day.
In my life fraught with many mistakes and many failures, having the courage to start my own blog has been one of the few good decisions I’ve ever made. I’ve given up on a lot of things. But never, never on this one. And since the day I began blogging, I’ve never found any reason to look back, except only to see how far I’ve come.
Looking ahead, I feel excited, thrilled even, knowing that there’s more to come. There are far greater things that lie in store. For my blog. For myself.
Now I know why you’re here. I may not know who you are, or what your whole story is. But I know that just like me some time ago, you also want something more out of life.
You want to feel like there’s more to life than your soul-sucking nine-to-five (or eight-to-five), a greater purpose that would give you happiness, meaning, and fulfillment.
You want to feel like, for the first time ever, you’re doing something more than just making a living. That you’re actually making a life.
And you’re wondering if blogging can give you all that.
Well, it can, but only if you have the courage to take the first step.
I have here a complete and comprehensive guide and tutorial to help you start a blog and launch your blogging career towards success. Whether you have a bit of knowledge about blogging, or you’re a complete newbie, this one’s for you.
It’s got everything you need to start a blog in a just a few simple steps. All you have to do is to follow the detailed guide and walkthrough laid out below.
Plus, there’s plenty of good information in between that’s worth reading, so you can get a deeper and more thorough understanding of what blogging is all about.
Remember, a blog can be your ticket to financial freedom and a more fulfilling life. All it takes to start one is a few minutes. All it costs is a few dollars each month.
But it will require a lot of hard work, effort, patience, sheer will, and most of all, love. But what worthwhile thing in life doesn’t?
I can’t promise you that blogging is going to be easy. But I can promise you this: it’s going to be worth it.
But only if you have the courage to take the first step.
So, ready to get started?
What is a blog?
A blog is a website that features regularly updated content – known as posts, entries, or articles – all arranged in a chronological order, with the newest ones appearing first.
All blogs are either a website or part of a website. But not all websites are blogs. For one, typical websites aren’t regularly updated like blogs are.
The word blog is simply a shortened version of the word ‘weblog’, because when blogging started sometime in 1994, a blog functioned solely like an online journal or diary. People used it to write about their day-to-day happenings and share their personal stories.
Today, however, blogs have grown into something more purposeful and important. While modern blogs still can – and still do – function like online journals and diaries, they now also serve as reliable sources of useful information on a wide range of topics, such as travel, fitness, fashion, parenting, interior design, photography, personal finance, etc.
Who is a blogger?
A blogger is simply someone who runs or operates a blog.
If you’re a blogger, your work mainly involves creating content for a blog, from written material such as articles and tutorials, to visuals such as posters and infographics.
But most of the time, your work also involves promoting the blog and its contents, likely on social media; as well as ensuring that the blog functions properly and smoothly.
Being a blogger was once considered only a hobby. But the explosive growth of blogging throughout the years has made it a viable – and lucrative – job. And not only as a gig or a side hustle, but also a full-time, legit professional career.
In fact, more and more people today now work as professional bloggers, either on their own blogs or for others, and make a living out of it.
After all, blogging as a career has many perks. Apart from profitability, another draw is the very, very flexible working arrangement. You can control your working hours, and because all the work is online, you can fulfill your job from the comfort of your home, or from anywhere, really, as long as you have a decent Internet connection.
But aside from being a job, blogging can also be a business. If you do it right, and do it well and patiently, you can start a blog from scratch and build it into a business that earns you passive income for the rest of your life.
Why are blogs so popular?
The first ever recognized blog was created back in 1994. It wasn’t called a blog back then. From there, blogs began to grow and multiply rapidly. Today, there are more than 600 million active blogs on the Internet.
In the US alone, there are more than 32 million bloggers – equivalent to around a tenth of the total US population, or almost one in ten Americans!
Of course, most people who own blogs aren’t full-time bloggers, but the point is that, twenty six years after the first blog was created, blogging is still truly alive and well in 2021!
And despite the prevalence of other social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc.), blogging is only expected to grow in relevance and popularity in the coming years!
So why are blogs incredibly popular? There are many reasons why, so we’ll only go through the main and most important reasons below.
1. Blogs are versatile
The first blogs were nothing more than online journals or diaries. But since the 2000s, blogs have evolved into many forms and into many functions.
Today, there are all kinds of blogs with all kinds of contents. There are blogs dedicated to fashion, food, fitness, beauty, travel, lifestyle, technology, personal finance, economics, politics, and literally any and all manner of topics.
There are personal blogs – those run by individuals – and then there are blogs run by businesses and corporations, as well as media outlets, universities, non-profit organizations, etc.
There are blogs that only have long-form articles; some that post only very short pieces of content; some that only contain videos, or audios, or podcasts; and some that post a combination of every content.
In an age when the Internet is dominated by social media giants, blogs have not only survived, but continue to thrive, and remarkably so, simply because they are very versatile and adaptable.
2. Blogs are useful
Believe it or not, a great part of all the information available on the Internet is delivered through blogs. That’s right. Blogs are now valid and mainstream sources of useful information.
You’ve probably never noticed it before, but many of the answers to the questions you once searched in Google actually came from blogs.
When you wanted an in-depth travel guide for your two-week trip to Costa Rica, you found it on a travel blog.
When you looked up the Internet for new and delicious recipes to try at home, you discovered a variety of them on a couple of food blogs.
When you tried to verify if a newly-released phone was worth buying, you made up your mind after reading complete and comprehensive reviews of it on tech blogs.
And when you finally decided to sort out your money issues, you learned the whats, hows, and whys of prudent financial management off a personal finance blog.
The point is that much of the information you read online you probably read off blogs, and you probably aren’t really aware of it. That’s how incredibly useful blogs are.
3. Blogs are effective
Another reason why blogs are still flourishing is their efficacy. Blogs are effective, plain and simple. They give results, both to the users and the bloggers themselves.
To users, blogs give all answers they search for, all the help they need, from information on travel, parenting, and current affairs; insight on politics, personal finance, and home gardening; to inspiration on fashion, web design, and interior design.
To bloggers, blogs are a perfect way to reach their target audience. Whether your goal is to simply share your passions and interest with other fellow enthusiasts, or promote your brand or business to the right market segment, blogs deliver results, and they deliver them well.
4. Blogs are easy to start
There was a time when blogging was the preserve of only a few people. Only those with the technical know-how can build and own one.
Today, however, it’s become incredibly easy to start a blog, so much so, in fact, that almost anyone and everyone can build their own blog in just a matter of minutes.
In fact, you don’t need to be a very techy person to start a blog. You don’t even need to know or have a lot of blogging skills at first. There are plenty of guides and tutorials that tell you how to do it – this is one such guide. All you need to know is how to use Google (or YouTube), and how to follow instructions.
5. Blogs are profitable
But perhaps the most important reason why blogs are still continuing to surge in popularity is profitability. Blogs are incredibly lucrative.
The largest blogs earn millions of dollars per year. The most profitable blog by far is HuffPost, which is estimated to earn $500 million a year. Other top earners include Engadget ($47.5 million per year), Moz ($44.9 million per year), PerezHilton ($41.3 million per year), and Copyblogger ($33.1 million per year).
Then there are also a lot of people who have started a blog from scratch and now make a healthy full-time income off it, and there are many more who earn part-time income from blogging.
Of course, not every blog performs as well. In fact, not every blog earns money. But the point is that, for those who do blogging really well and seriously, there is good money to be made.
Why should you start a blog?
There are plenty of good reasons why you should start a blog. It all depends on your motivation and your purpose. But some of the best reasons are:
1. Share your story
Every person has a story to tell, and a blog is the perfect way to share it. Blogs are the ideal online platforms for self-expression.
So whether you are interested in writing about your stamp collecting hobby, telling stories about your travels, sharing your very own homemade recipes, writing movie and TV show reviews, chronicling your journey towards financial freedom, or advocating for causes you are passionate in, a blog is the perfect online platform to do it.
2. Inform and educate
After all the many changes blogs have undergone through the years, they are now recognized as reliable sources of information.
So if you have knowledge about a particular topic that you simply must share with the world, then start a blog and share it there.
Whether you’re providing information on how to earn a full-time income as a stay-at-home mom, recent updates on the latest archeological digs, insights on the newest fashion trends, analysis of current affairs, facts about the mountain ranges of the Philippines, or the methods to achieve a leaner and stronger body, a blog is the perfect online platform to inform and educate other people.
3. Connect with people
Most people forget that blogs are also social media platforms. In fact, long before there was Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, there were blogs.
And just like all social media platforms, a blog is an excellent way to connect with people and form meaningful relationships, whether you simply want to form a community with the people who share the same things you are passionate in; establish professional contacts and networks to improve your career; or help your business by finding potential partners, suppliers, and customers.
4. Promote your brand or business
In this day and age, having an online presence is crucial to your business. Apart from social media, having a blog/website offers you an unparalleled opportunity to increase your brand visibility, reach out to and engage more effectively with your target market, and generate more leads for higher sales revenue.
In fact, did you know that companies with blogs produce an average of 67% more leads monthly than companies that don’t blog?
That small businesses with blogs generate 126% more leads?
That businesses that blog get 55% more website visitors than businesses that don’t?
That in 2019, marketers who prioritized blogging received 13x more ROI (return on investment) than companies that did not?
That 70% of people would rather learn about a company through articles rather than advertisements?
Or that 61% of US consumers have made a purchase based solely on a blog post?
5. Earn passive income
This is by far one of the most attractive reasons for you, or for anybody, to start a blog.
Blogging has been around for some time, but it still remains as one of the most popular, most reliable, and most profitable ways of making money online.
If anything, blogging has become more profitable, in part because there are many more people who have access to the Internet, and in part because bloggers today have many more options of generating revenue than before.
Apart from the traditional display and cost-per-click ads, bloggers today can now tap into more modern – and more lucrative – sources of income, such as affiliate marketing and sponsored content, among others.
Or that in 2019, an average blogger with a fairly sizeable audience could expect to earn around $1,442 for one sponsored blog post alone?
Other ways you can make money from blogging include selling your own products and services, digital or physical; and hiring out blogging-related skills, such as writing, graphic and web design, search engine optimization (SEO), and other such skills to paying clientele, but more on that later.
How do you start a blog?
First of all, congratulations on taking the first step on the path towards your blogging dreams. Welcome to the world of blogging, and may this day mark the beginning of your successful journey towards financial independence and a more fulfilling life.
I can’t tell you enough how truly worthwhile blogging is. It’s exciting. It’s rewarding. And most of all, it’s life-changing.
But it’s hard. It’s demanding. It will require a lot from you – money, time, hard work, devotion, patience, sacrifice, and of course, love. But what worthwhile thing in life doesn’t?
And as in all worthwhile endeavors in life, the first step is always the hardest. In blogging, the first step is deciding to finally start your blog. After days, months, maybe even years of thinking and overthinking, here you are. You’ve finally made up your mind. You’re ready to start. Ready to commit.
The next step now is to set up your blog. Ironically, it’s actually a lot easier than one might imagine. It’ll take you less than an hour, and in just several simple steps you’ll soon have the foundations of a money-making business. All you need to do is to follow the complete and detailed guide I laid out for you below.
So, are you ready?
Alright, then. Let’s get to it!
1. Pick a niche
The very first step in setting up your blog is to pick a niche. So let’s go over what a niche actually is, why you need to pick one, and how do you go about picking the ideal niche.
What’s a niche?
Well, a niche is basically the topic of your blog. It’s what you’ll be writing about. It’s what you want your blog – and you as the author – to be known for.
A niche is a specific topic or a group of several topics all closely-related together – as opposed to a general blog, which talks about multiple and sometimes unrelated topics at once.
Examples of niches include personal finance, making money online, fitness, interior design, travel, etc. at the broadest level.
At a narrower level, you have topics like blogging, affiliate marketing, working from home, minimalist home decor, solo traveling, and the like.
Going further down are topics like mommy blogging, online night jobs that involve writing, minimalist home decor under a budget, solo traveling in Southeast Asia, etc.
You can still narrow down those topics, but you already get the idea of what a niche is – it’s defined, it’s specific, and it’s specialized.
Wait, why do I need to pick a niche? Can’t I just blog about everything?
There’s really no rule that says you have to pick a niche instead of blogging about anything and everything. You can blog about whatever you want, if you want to. But generally, you’re better off picking a specific topic, and let me give you six good reasons why.
- It’s easier to create and build an identity
When your blog is focused on a single topic, that topic is what your blog will be known for. It’s your blog’s identity. When people ask you what your blog is all about, you can simply mention its niche. You can say it’s a personal finance blog. Or a blog about tourist spots in Ontario, Canada. Or a blog for stay-at-home moms who want to start their own online businesses. You have an exact idea of your blog’s identity, what its purpose is, and what content it offers.
On the other hand, if you write about various and random topics, you – and your audience – will have a harder time figuring out what your blog really is about.
- It’s easier to find and attract your audience, and build a loyal following
Picking a niche allows you determine what crowd or audience you want to visit your blog. It allows you to know who you’re writing for.
For example, if your blog is all about fitness, then you can expect fitness-conscious people to come to your blog. If you only write articles on vintage cars, then you can expect your audience to be made-up largely of vintage car-enthusiasts. Similarly, if you focus solely on personal finance, then you can expect people who want to learn more about prudent money management to stop by.
If you create content about a single topic consistently, not only can you expect or predict the types of people who visit your blog. They as well can expect what to see from your blog.
Plus, since all your articles or posts revolve around just one topic (or several related topics), it’s likely that if your audience finds one article interesting, then they will find the rest of your content interesting as well. They’ll be more likely to read and engage with your blog and keep coming back for more.
But if you write about various and random topics all at once, you can’t exactly tell who will come to your blog. And because your topics are unrelated to each other, it’s very likely that your audience might be interested in one topic, but not to all.
- It’s easier to plan, organize, and create content
When you have a specific niche, you don’t need to waste time and effort figuring out what to write about. Instead, you can get straight to writing. You already have a topic. You just need to go from there.
For example, if your blog is all about pencils, then all you need to worry about is writing articles related to pencils. Today you can write about the history of pencils; tomorrow, the different types of pencils; on the third day, the best pencil brands for sketching and shading; on the fourth day, the longest pencils ever made; on the hundredth day, a guide on how to turn a pencil into a pencil crossbow; and so on and so forth.
- It’s easier to build expertise and authority
If your blog is focused on a particular niche, you can become an authority on that niche in a shorter time.
The more and better content you produce on that specific topic, the more you make yourself an expert on the matter. People will recognize your blog as the go-to reference for that particular topic. And the next time they have questions about such specific topic, they already know who to turn to. They will come to your blog for answers.
So if all you do is write informative and useful blog posts about pencils, then very soon people will realize that you’re an authority on all matters pencil-related. They will thus turn to you whenever they need answers regarding pencils.
But if people don’t know what your blog is all about, then they wouldn’t know what they can go to you for.
- It’s easier to rank on search engines
When you focus on a single topic, you’ll likely face (relatively) less competition from other blogs, making it (relatively) easier for you to rank on Google or other search engines.
For instance, when you blog solely about pencils, then you’ll likely only have to deal with competition from other pencil-related blogs.
In contrast, if you blog about pencils, pens, and papers, then not only will you have to compete with pencil-related blogs, you will also face competition from pen-related blogs, paper-related blogs, and other pencil, pen, and paper-related blogs.
Plus, if your blog has a specific niche, Google (and other search engines) will have an easier time recognizing what your blog is all about, and will more likely recommend your blog to people searching about that specific topic. But if Google can’t figure out what your blog is about and who it is for, then it won’t know to whom it will show or recommend your blog.
- It’s easier to make money
Deciding on a particular niche makes it easier for you to earn off your blog. Why? Because you already have an idea for whom your blog is intended.
When you know who your audience is, it’s easier to figure out what products and services you can offer that they will very likely need and buy. You know their problems. You know what they’re after. All you need to do now is recommend and sell the solutions to them.
Whereas if you can’t figure out what your blog is about and who is it for, then it’s all too likely that you could be selling products and services to people who are not interested in such offerings.
Of course, these are only some of the reasons why you’re better off settling on a niche instead of blogging about various and random topics.
But then again, you don’t have to if you don’t want to. You can blog about anything and everything you like. That’s what most lifestyle blogs are about, after all. And lifestyle blogs are pretty common.
Alright, so how do I pick a niche?
There are no definite rules on choosing a niche. You can blog about anything and everything under the sun. That being said, there are, however, some useful tips on helping you find your ideal niche. Here are the best tips.
- Pick a topic you enjoy talking about
When you blog, you most likely won’t just make one, two, or ten articles. You’ll certainly be writing many more than that, especially when you’re just starting out all by your lonesome, and especially when you’re blogging for the long-term.
So it’s important to pick a topic you enjoy writing about. A topic that you are, firstly, passionate in, and secondly, knowledgeable in.
Choose a topic that you aren’t just very interested in today. Choose one that you’ll enjoy talking about even after two or five years have already passed.
You might be eager now to share everything you know about the apparently shell-less terrestrial gastropod mollusks – aka slugs – but will you still have that enthusiasm five years into the future?
Besides, if you enjoy writing about a topic, it won’t feel like a chore. It becomes easier to churn out content after content. And when you enjoy a topic, the quality of your content is visibly superior to content you’re simply forced to write about.
Plus, if you pick a topic you aren’t really passionate in, you might lose interest in blogging altogether, and give up after only a couple of months.
- Make sure there’s an audience for it
If you’re blogging solely for yourself, and don’t want other people to access your blog, then you don’t have to worry about this one.
But chances are, you do want to attract other people to your blog. You do want to draw in readers interested in what you have to offer, engage with them, and form meaningful relationships. And you do want to attract paying traffic – people who will buy whatever it is you’re offering, or who will in any way compensate your content monetarily.
So it’s really important that you pick a topic that other people are interested in as well.
Though it’s essential that you find a niche, you don’t want to settle on one that only you and maybe five other people are interested in. Find a topic that attracts, at the very least, hundreds, if not thousands, of like-minded people.
Some good free tools to use here would be Google Trends and Google Search. Google Trends allows you to see the top search queries worldwide or per country per month, per year, or even per five years. Google Search, on the other hand, allows you to see what related searches people are making for a certain topic, and what related questions they’re asking.
- Something not too broad but not too narrow
Now you want to pick a niche or a topic that’s not too general, but not too specific, either.
Pick a topic that’s too broad, and you’ll end up with a lot more competition from other blogs and sites, many of which have been camping on the front page of Google’s search results, and have the money and the resources to stay there for a long time. Plus, you’ll have a harder time establishing what your blog is all about and creating content that’s all closely related.
But pick a topic that’s too narrow, and you might find that there might not be enough demand for it. You’ll have a hard time pulling in a sizeable – and profitable – traffic to make blogging worthwhile. Chances are, you might get discouraged and quit blogging altogether.
So you have to pick something in between.
For example, a topic like ‘fashion’ is certainly, too broad, don’t you think? I mean, fashion for whom? Fashion for what? Fashion for when? And fashion for where? You definitely want to narrow it down further.
But don’t overdo it! Otherwise you might end up with something like ‘fashion for thirty-something moms who like to go clubbing on Tuesday nights’! Now that’s too narrow!
- It has to be profitable
If you’re not concerned about making money off your blog, and just want to blog for fun, as a hobby, or for other non-monetary purposes, then you can skip this one.
But chances are, you do want to make a profit from blogging. You do want to earn extra income from your blog, or even make it your full-time job or business.
So pick a niche where you have a likely chance of earning, where there are products and services to sell, and people who will buy them.
Look, even if you think of blogging only as a hobby, it still costs time, effort, and money, so you might as well earn from it.
Besides, when you put in the necessary work, you can actually build your blog into a full-time business that can earn you passive income even until your retirement and beyond! But it all starts with picking a profitable blogging topic, so you definitely want to choose carefully.
- It’s gotta have a future
For the most part, blogging is a long-term endeavor. I mean, you yourself want to see your blog last for quite some time.
So you want to pick a niche that people will be interested in not only today, but also in the next three, five, or even ten years.
Don’t go for a topic that’s only popular and relevant now. If you do that, your blog will also only be popular and relevant now, and might likely die out in the future.
Once more, Google Trends can help you out here. It will help you see what the most searched topics are and have been not just in the past month or year, but even further back to the last five years. While it can’t exactly tell the trends in the future, there’s a likely chance that the topics that have seen strong and stable attention in the last five years might also last for some time into the future.
Hey, so remember, picking the right niche is not only the first part of setting up your blog – it’s also the most important! A good niche means a solid foundation for your blog, as well as an excellent and worthwhile course or direction to take your blog towards. It can make or break your odds of success in blogging!
So it’s ok to take as much time as you need when choosing a niche. Give it much thought. Do your research. Weigh your options against what you want, and what the world wants, and find a balance in between.
Once you’ve decided on a niche, you can proceed to the next step.
2. Choose a domain name
Alright, now that you have niche, it’s time to come up with a domain name. In this step, we’ll go through what a domain name is and how you can choose yours.
Ok, so what’s a domain name?
A domain name is simply your website’s name. It forms part of a complete web address: it’s what comes after the ‘www.’ in any web address.
Examples of domain names include:
- phmillennia.com (my own domain)
Most of the time, your domain name can already give people a hint on what your website or blog is all about (note the word ‘can’).
For example, if you name your blog ‘wanderlust.com’ then people will naturally assume you produce travel-related content.
If your site’s name is ‘personalfinancetips.com’, then it is only logical that visitors will expect to find articles regarding personal finance.
But sometimes, domain names don’t tell anything. For instance, ‘google.com’. A person who has never heard of Google before will not know what to expect upon seeing the domain name ‘google.com’. Another example is ‘instagram.com’. Or ‘facebook.com’. They’re honestly random creations, and we only recognize them today because they’ve become such huge household names.
Anyway, the point is that domain names sometimes can already tell you what a blog or website is about. Sometimes, they can’t.
By the way, to own and use a certain domain name, you actually have to pay an annual fee with a domain registrar, the company that sells domain names. But the rule is that you can’t have a domain name that somebody else already owns! And if you can’t pay the annual fee, you lose the right to use a certain domain name and that domain name goes up for sale.
How do I create an ideal domain name?
Just like in picking a niche, there aren’t much fixed rules you have to follow when creating your domain name. However, there are a few helpful tips to guide you in coming up with an ideal domain name. Let’s go over the some of the most useful ones.
- Make sure your domain name is available
The rules of the Internet state that you can’t use a domain name that someone else already owns. Every domain name is unique and exclusive, and no two websites can have the same domain. So you have to come up with a domain name that no one owns yet.
But don’t worry. You can check if your tentative domain name is available using the nifty little tool below. If it’s available, you can register and claim it in the next step.
- Maybe make it at least related to your topic
As we’ve talked about a while ago, a domain name can already give potential visitors an idea as to what a website is all about, and what content it offers. So you might want to choose a domain name for your blog that’s related to your niche, something that gives people a clue as to the topic you write about.
But this isn’t really as important as other people say it is. Sometimes a domain name does hint at a blog’s identity or niche. Sometimes, it doesn’t. Besides, a lot of bloggers choose to use their personal names as their domain names.
Still, if you have the chance, do make your domain name at least related to your topic.
- Give it room to grow
While you want to pick a domain name that’s related to your niche or topic, you definitely don’t want to choose one that severely restricts what you can and can’t write about right from the start. You want a domain name that allows you to focus on a topic, not something that hinders your creative freedom.
What I mean is, pick a domain name that has room for growth. This ties in with picking a niche that’s not too broad, but not too narrow, either. Just as a too broad niche won’t allow you to focus, and a too narrow niche will severely limit your potential to grow, a domain name that prevents you from expanding your content into closely-related topics in the future isn’t a great idea.
For example, a domain name like ‘denvertouristspots.com’ is great if you’re writing about, well, tourist spots in Denver, Colorado. But what if, in the future, you also want to write about other tourist spots in Aspen, Boulder, and in other cities in Colorado, or in the US, for that matter? Do you think your new content would fit in with your domain name?
As we’ve talked about a while ago, blogging is a long-term endeavor. You want to start thinking about the future, too. So give your blog room to grow – and that begins with a topic and a domain name that both have room to grow.
- Easy to remember
A good domain name is something that’s remarkable, memorable, and unforgettable. It’s something unique, catchy, and easy to remember. So if at all possible, make sure your domain name is simple, nothing too long, and easy to spell and pronounce.
- Easy to type in
Your domain name also has to be very easy to type in. Steer clear of very long and overly-complicated domain names. Avoid including a lot of numbers and symbols, too. The last thing you want is for potential visitors to mistype your domain and end up on a different site!
- It’s gotta have an appropriate domain name extension
It’s not just a good domain name that you have to choose. You also need to pick a suitable domain name extension.
A domain name extension, otherwise known as domain ending or top-level domain (TLD), is simply the ‘.com’, ‘.net’, ‘.org’, ‘.gov’, etc. part in a domain name.
The most common TLD is ‘.com’, which is short for commercial. However, there is now a wide variety of newer TLDs, ranging from ‘.academy’ to ‘.coffee’ to ‘.photography’. There are even funky ones like ‘.cool’, ‘.vodka’, ‘.pizza’, and ‘.sexy’!
But while these new TLDs allow you to express your creativity, and allow your blog to stand out and better communicate its purpose and identity, it’s still best to stick with the tried-and-true options.
So you’re still better off choosing ‘.com’, or if that’s not available, then ‘.org’ or ‘.net’. These TLDs are what most people are used to anyway, what they type in by default, and it’s really difficult to break an ingrained habit.
Plus, they’re cheaper – the new domain name extensions cost a lot more!
Alright, so remember, apart from the first one, which you cannot circumvent in any way, the rest of the above tips are just those – tips. You don’t have to follow them, but it really helps a lot if you do.
Remember, too, that while the right domain name is important, you don’t want to spend too much time coming up with the perfect domain name.
Otherwise, you’ll only end up wasting valuable time and effort, which you could have spent in building a website or starting a blog around a good domain name instead.
Worse, you might get caught up in trying to choose the perfect domain name that you never start blogging at all!
So start listing down a few good domain names for your blog. You may want to list down several, so you’ll have options, just in case. Then check if any of your domain name choices are available using the nifty little tool below. You can then register and purchase your chosen domain name in the next step.
3. Choose a web host
Now that you have a niche, and a good choice for a domain name (or several of it), it’s time to get yourself a web hosting plan. But before anything else, let’s find out what web hosting is, why you need it, and what the best web hosting plan for you is.
What’s web hosting?
Web hosting is a service that allows you to post or publish your website/blog on the World Wide Web, and allows other people to view and access your website/blog.
You see, a website is actually made up of many different files, and these files are kept in a special computer known as a server. All websites are stored on servers.
When another person wants to access your website, all they need to do is type your domain into their browser. Their computer will then connect to the server hosting your website, and your website will be delivered and made accessible to them on their browser.
Web hosting is offered by web hosting service providers. These are the businesses that own the servers that store and host websites.
When you buy web hosting service from a web hosting provider, you’re simply renting a space on their servers so you can store your website’s files and make your website accessible to other people.
And when you can’t keep paying for that web hosting service, your web hosting company stops storing your website – you and other people won’t be able access it anymore.
Free web hosting vs paid web hosting: what’s the difference?
You probably heard this before, but there is actually such a thing as free web hosting. It’s basically just like any another web hosting service, except, well, it’s free (you don’t gotta pay for it – upfront, that is). A popular example is Blogger.com, a free blogging site with free web hosting and a free subdomain.
So now you’re asking: if there’s already free web hosting, why even bother buying paid web hosting?
The answer is simple. Free web hosting comes with numerous limitations, drawbacks, and conditions.
For instance, while you aren’t paying money upfront, running the servers that store website files and keep them live on the Internet is incredibly expensive, so free web hosting providers must make money off you somehow. They usually do that by running ads on your free blog – you usually don’t get a choice on what ads are displayed, and you don’t get a cut from the profits.
Also, with free web hosting, you usually have limited freedom with the way you customize, design, and manage your blog or website. You have limited options when it comes to themes, plug-ins, and other tools. Oftentimes, you can also only make a limited number of webpages and blog posts, severely limiting your potential for growth.
Besides, with free hosting, you usually use the free web hosting provider’s subdomain instead of your own custom domain. If, for example, I made my blog instead with free web hosting, such as Blogger, my blog would then be found at ‘www.phmillennia.blogspot.com’, with ‘blogspot’ as the subdomain of Blogger.
Paid hosting, on the other hand, gives you absolute freedom on the way you create and manage your website, especially with how you earn from it. Also, paid web hosting is faster, more reliable, and comes with dedicated support teams. Plus, you get your own domain instead of a free subdomain, which will make you look more credible and professional.
The bottom line is that free web hosting is only good when you just want to try blogging for fun, or you want to practice and get better at it. But if you really want to get serious at blogging, to build a credible website, and to make money off it, then paid hosting is the way to go.
So why should I choose Bluehost for web hosting?
While there are plenty of web hosting providers out there for you to choose from, I recommend that you sign-up with Bluehost. It is, hands down, the best web hosting provider. It’s one of the largest and most popular web hosting companies worldwide, and there’s a good reason for it – or in this case, good reasons, which I’ve listed for you below.
- Bluehost is reliable
Arguably the most critical benchmark for web hosting is uptime, or the time that your website is operational or accessible. Of course, you don’t want your blog to be down, or offline or inaccessible, at any time.
Well, Bluehost has you covered. It’s one of the most dependable web hosting service providers out there. It has an uptime guarantee of 99.98% (no web host can provide 100%), which means that your site will function amazing all year round, with only about an hour of downtime for the whole year (which only happens during scheduled maintenances).
- Bluehost is fast
Perhaps the second most important factor when it comes to web hosting is speed. If your website and your webpages don’t load fast enough, your visitors will all too likely hit that ‘back’ button, or close that tab, without hesitation. That means lost traffic, and potentially lost sales, too.
The good news is that Bluehost guarantees that you get fast page loading speeds, so you need not worry about losing visitors and potential revenue.
- Bluehost is secure
Another major factor to consider when it comes to web hosting is security. You definitely don’t want your blog to be hacked or be subjected to malicious attacks. Fortunately, Bluehost provides strong security options to ensure that your site is safe from hacking, malware attacks, spam, etc.
- Bluehost is beginner-friendly
For newbie bloggers, the many and various terms and technicalities of web hosting, and of blogging in general, can be quite intimidating.
Thankfully, Bluehost simplifies everything for you. From providing newbie-friendly and easy-to-use tools, to streamlining and automating the entire process of setting up your blog, Bluehost ensures that you get a fast, convenient, and hassle-free entry into the world of blogging.
- Bluehost is affordable
Being but a beginner blogger, it’s basically impossible – and unreasonable – for you to shell out a large amount of cash. Fortunately, Bluehost has your back. It offers some of the cheapest web hosting plans out there (we’ll go through each one shortly), guaranteeing the best bang for your buck. Plus, all Bluehost plans come with a 30-day money back guarantee.
- Bluehost is customer-centric
Bluehost boasts an expert, effective, and efficient customer support team who will ensure that you get nothing less than top-notch web hosting service for your blog. They are very responsive, highly knowledgeable, and they provide real solutions. You can contact them via live chat, email, and 24/7 phone support.
- Bluehost is trusted by over 2 million site owners
Bluehost is one of the largest and most popular web hosting providers across the globe. It is the first choice of over 2 million website owners, and having the trust and business of that many people means Bluehost is doing all the right things.
- Bluehost is recommended by WordPress
WordPress powers over 40% of websites on the Internet, so their recommendation is a big – no, a huge – deal. But we’ll know more about WordPress later on.
- You can make money with Bluehost
Bluehost offers one of the most popular, most profitable, and most successful affiliate programs online. If you join their affiliate program, you get the opportunity to earn $65 commission for every visitor you refer who buys a web hosting plan from Bluehost. It’s that simple!
Anyway, these are only some of the reasons why Bluehost is, by far, the best web hosting provider. There are plenty more reasons, of course, but all ultimately point to the fact that when you’re just starting out on your blogging journey, Bluehost is the most reliable and most dependable web host to help you every step of the way to success.
What web hosting plans are Bluehost offering? What’s the right one for me?
Bluehost offers four hosting plans, namely:
This is perfect if you only have one website or are just starting out. It has all the essential features to start a blog in an easy and convenient way.
Once your site grows, you might want to upgrade to this. You’ll also want this if you run multiple sites.
- Choice Plus
This is perfect if you have multiple websites and require more advanced privacy and security features for them.
You get the most advanced and optimized web hosting features Bluehost offers in this. Get this only if you run e-commerce and larger sites, and you need only the most powerful tools to manage them.
Since you’re just starting out and still getting a feel for blogging, I recommend that you opt for the Basic Plan. It’s a good and solid choice for beginners. It’s got all the essential functions and features you need for a quick, simple, and hassle-free start to blogging, such as:
- Web hosting service for 1 website
This is perfect since you’re just starting out and will only be running one site.
- Free domain for 1 year
As mentioned earlier, you have to pay a yearly fee to own a domain and keep using it. But if you buy your web hosting package from Bluehost, you get your domain for free for one year! After the first year, however, the renewal price applies.
- Free CDN
A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a group of globally-distributed servers which helps improve your website speed and security, allowing for your webpages and content to load faster. Most web traffic today is channeled through CDNs. This just means that your blog is guaranteed to load fast.
- Free SSL Certificate
This is an important security feature to keep personal information, e-commerce transactions, and other sensitive data safe with encrypted connections. This just means that your blog is guaranteed to be safe and secure.
- 50 GB SSD storage
The Basic Plan offers you 50 GB of storage space for your site files. If you’re a beginner with a start-up blog, then your 50 GB can perfectly accommodate all your files, as it will take a long time to use up that much storage.
- 24/7 customer support
You get expert customer support to help you effectively build, grow, and manage your blog.
Sounds good! How do I sign-up with Bluehost?
Signing up with Bluehost allows you to buy web hosting service, and also register your domain.
Click the button below to proceed…
…which will take you to this page. Then click the GET STARTED button…
…which will then take you to this page. Then click the GET STARTED button (or simply scroll down)…
…which will in turn take you to this part of the page.
This is where you can see the price cards for the different web hosting plans offered by Bluehost, which we’ve just talked about earlier.
Hey, so by the way, you should know that the more prominent prices displayed are discounted prices – they only apply to your first purchase/invoice. The regular prices apply after your first 12-month, 24-month, or 36-month term – whichever you buy – is over.
But before you buy anything, take a look at the duration of the plans.
If you select a 12-month Basic plan, you’ll pay a discounted price of $5.95 per month for your first 12-month term.
A 24-month Basic plan will cost you a discounted price of $4.95 per month for your first 24-month term.
And a 36-month Basic plan sells for a discounted price of $3.95 a month for your first 36-month term.
As you can see, the 36-month plan offers the most discount to your web hosting fees. If you’re planning to blog for the long-term, if you see yourself blogging three, five, or ten years from now, getting the 36-month plan is a wise choice. You get to make a lot of savings that way.
Remember, you won’t be getting any more discounts after your first purchase/invoice.
Once you’re ready to purchase the Basic plan (or any plan of your choosing), click the SELECT button…
…which will take you to this page.
This is where you can register your domain. We’ve already checked if your domain name is available a while ago, but you can also do that here. You can also choose a TLD, but a ‘.com’ is already the best possible choice, and it’s automatically chosen as a default.
So type in your domain name on the text field provided, then click the NEXT button. If your domain is available, you will get to this page.
This is the page where you can create your Bluehost account and complete your purchase, so fill in the required fields with the appropriate information.
But before you pay for anything, take a look at this part first.
As you can see, Bluehost has taken the liberty of bundling some additional features to your purchase. It’s up to you if you want to buy these features or not. You can find out more about each feature by clicking the accompanying MORE INFORMATION link.
But if you ask me, only the first one – the Domain Privacy + Protection – is important. If you select this, Bluehost can hide your personal contact information and keep it from being accessed by just about anybody, including spammers.
Meanwhile, the rest of the add-ons are just optional. Besides, if you do need them, you can purchase them later on anyway.
If you have filled in every field with the appropriate information, you can tick the check box indicating that you understood the Terms and Conditions (after you’ve read it, of course). Then click the SUBMIT button…
Afterwards, you will receive a welcome message from Bluehost and a confirmation email, and you will also be asked to create a password. Remember to choose a password that is strong and difficult to guess, but also one that you won’t have a hard time remembering.
That’s it! You now have a niche, a domain name, and top-notch web hosting.
But there’s still just a bit more work to be done, so on to the next step!
4. Install WordPress
Alright. We’re almost there. Just a couple more steps and you’ll soon have a fully-fledged blog.
So let’s keep things rolling.
The next step now is to install WordPress. And we’ll do exactly just that, right after we get to know what WordPress is and why is it important.
WordPress, simply put, is an amazing piece of software – a Content Management System (CMS), to be exact – that lets you build a website in the easiest way possible.
It’s free and open source, which means anyone and everyone can use it.
It’s also very simple – you can use it to create, edit, and manage your blog even if you’re an absolute newbie or don’t know anything about coding, web design, or web development.
And it’s also very popular – about 40% all websites on the Internet are powered by WordPress! So chances are, about four out of every ten websites you’ve visited are made with WordPress!
And remember how Bluehost is recommended by WordPress? Well, now that you know just how important WordPress is, you can also appreciate just how big their endorsement is!
WordPress.com vs WordPress.org: what’s the difference?
Upon your entry into the blogging world, two common terms you will see and hear a lot are WordPress.com and WordPress.org. But while they are kinda similar terms, they actually refer to two different things.
WordPress.com is a hosting service created by the founder of WordPress. It’s like Bluehost, or any other web hosting service provider, except that apart from selling paid hosting packages, it also offers free web hosting.
As we mentioned earlier, when you use free hosting, you also usually get a free subdomain: in this case, if I built my website using WordPress.com’s free web hosting, my subdomain would be ‘www.phmillennia.wordpress.com’.
WordPress.org, on the other hand, is the ‘real WordPress’, the amazing website platform one we just talked about a minute ago. It’s the one that powers over a fourth of all websites on the Internet. To be clear, when we talk about WordPress in this article, we’re referring to WordPress.org.
Ok, great! Now how do I install WordPress?
Installing WordPress used to be such a long and complicated process (it still kinda is). In fact, it used to be so time-consuming and difficult that a lot of people were put off from blogging altogether.
But with Bluehost, the process has gotten so much simpler. In fact, once you sign-up with Bluehost, WordPress is already installed for you. All you need to do now is complete a few finishing touches and you’re good to go. Amazing, yeah?
- Choose a theme
Bluehost will ask you to pick a theme for your blog from its current offerings.
A theme is a collection of templates used to change the overall look and appearance of your website.
There are lots of themes to choose from. Some are premium themes – it means you have to buy them. But there are also many free themes.
So take a moment to choose a theme you want. But don’t take too long! Remember, you can change your theme later on anyway.
In fact, if you’re having a hard time choosing, just a pick a free one that looks clean and simple, and change it later on if you want to.
Or you can just skip this step, and pick a theme whenever you feel like it.
- Start building
Just click the START BUILDING button.
- Choose a blog type
Bluehost will ask you to specify what type of blog you want yours to be. You can choose between BUSINESS or PERSONAL, or you can also click I DON’T NEED HELP, as this part is optional. Make your pick and that’s it!
Once done, you’ll then be taken to your WordPress Dashboard.
5. Start creating content
Ok, so after all that work, you’re now on the last step of setting-up your blog. Finally! Aren’t you excited?
At this point, you now have a live site on the Internet. Awesome! But wait – it’s still empty. So it’s time to fill it up with some amazing content.
In blogging, when we talk about content, we mostly mean blog posts, entries, articles, and all that good stuff. But we also include pages or webpages.
You can create both pages and posts for your blog from your WordPress Dashboard. Your WordPress Dashboard gives you access to all the site management features of WordPress. It’s your admin area, your workshop, where you make things happen. It’s like a studio, if you’re an artist, or a kitchen if you’re a chef.
By the way, you can easily access your WordPress Dashboard from the address bar of your browser. Just type in your domain name and add ‘/wp-admin’, which will land you on a page where you can log in to your WordPress Dashboard. For example, my domain name is ‘phmillennia.com’, and my WordPress Dashboard is accessible (only to me) at ‘phmillennia.com/wp-admin’.
That being said, there are tons of new and exciting stuff you can do on your Dashboard. You can explore all of them later on. But for now, you should focus on creating your pages and your posts first.
What pages do I need to create first? And why?
A webpage is a single page on your website. Think of it like a page in a book. It’s mostly static (means it rarely changes), as opposed to posts, which are the ones that get created and updated frequently.
Pages give your site structure and organization, and supply information about you and your blog to search engines and to your visitors. And when you have a brand-new website (like you do now), there are a couple of webpages that you need to create first. These include the:
This is the page that visitors land on when they type in your domain name. Your homepage usually includes a brief introduction on what your blog is all about, as well as a selection of your most popular or recent posts, what products or services you’re offering, etc.
And since ‘first impressions last’, you should strive to make your homepage as appealing and as engaging as much as possible, to convince visitors to read your content and even buy whatever it is you’re selling. Chances are, you only have one shot to impress your visitors, so make the most of it.
- About page
This is where you give some interesting background information about your blog and yourself. It is here that you share, in-depth, what your blog is about, what visitors can expect to find, as well as who you are, what motivated you to start blogging, etc. This is where you tell the tale of your blogging journey.
- Contact page
This is where you have your contact information – email address, business address, telephone number, etc. – displayed, for persons or organizations who want to get in touch with you.
Alright, so those are some of the pages you want to have on your website before anything else. As you grow, you can add more webpages to fit your needs. But for now, those first pages will do.
What about posts? What should I write for my first post?
Now, after you’ve created your main and must-have webpages, it’s time to turn your attention to writing. It’s time to create your first blog post.
Your posts, or articles, or entries, etc., will form the bulk of your blog content. These are your stories, guides, walkthroughs, tutorials, case studies, listicles, product reviews, and all manner of written material (and otherwise). These are what separates blogs from other websites. These are what gets your blog noticed by Google and ranked on its search results. These are what gets visitors a-visitin’. And these are what will make you money.
So what should you write for your first blog post?
Well, you can write about anything. But perhaps you want to start with a post that welcomes visitors into your blog, and introduces them to who you are, what your blog is all about, what got you into blogging, what they can expect in the future, and why they should definitely follow and keep up with you and your blog.
Or you can write about whatever. Just remember to make it interesting, engaging, and most of all, heartfelt.
Once you’re done, you can now publish your first post.
Congratulations! You now have a blog! It’s live on the Internet, and you’ve just made your first blog post and shared it with the rest of the world. See, it wasn’t that hard after all, now, was it? After all that time you spent thinking and overthinking, here you are. A proud owner of a blog and what will soon be your money-making business and your key to financial freedom and a more fulfilling life. Now give yourself a pat on the back. You definitely deserve one.
How to start a blog (summary):
Here are all the steps to starting a blog – everything we just did, basically, but summarized just for you.
1. Pick a niche
A niche is just the topic of your blog. It’s what you’ll be writing about. It’s specific, it’s specialized, and it’s well-defined.
Picking a niche, instead of writing about various topics all at once, will make it easier for people and search engines to understand what your blog is all about, as well as make it easier for you to write consistent and coherent content.
You want to pick a niche that you’re passionate in as well as knowledgeable in. Something not broad and vague, but not too narrow, either. It has to have an audience, a future, and a profitable potential (which just means it can make you money).
2. Choose a domain name
After deciding on a niche, you now need to come up with a domain name, or the name of your blog.
An ideal domain name is something that’s unique, simple, easy to remember, and easy to type in. It’s somewhat related to your topic, has room for growth, and has a suitable domain name extension (a ‘.com’ will do).
And one more thing – your domain name must be something that nobody else owns yet, because the rules of the Internet state that you can’t own a domain name that someone already owns. Also, you have to pay for the right to own a particular domain name.
But don’t worry. You can check if your tentative domain name is available using the nifty little tool below. If it’s available, you can then register and buy it in the next step.
3. Choose a web host
The third step is to buy a web hosting plan. Web hosting service allows your blog to go live on the Internet, and make it visible and accessible to other people.
When it comes to web hosting, your best option is Bluehost. Fast, secure, reliable, and trusted by over 2 million site owners, Bluehost is the best web hosting provider out there. It’s Basic Plan has all the essential features you need to start a blog in a fast and hassle-free way.
You can register your domain name with Bluehost, too.
So click the button below to sign-up with Bluehost for your web hosting plan, as well as register your domain name.
4. Install WordPress
WordPress is an incredible piece of software that lets you build and customize your website in the easiest and simplest way possible. It’s free, it’s reliable, and it powers over 40% of all websites on the Internet.
5. Start creating content
From your WordPress Dashboard, you can now start creating content for your blog. You want to focus on two things: pages, and then posts.
Pages give your blog structure and organization, and provide information to search engines and to your visitors. The first webpages you want to create are your homepage, about page, and contact page.
On the other hand, posts are your written content. They’re your blog articles, entries, stories, guides, walkthroughs, tutorials, case studies, listicles, product reviews, etc. So go ahead and start writing your first post. Once you’re done, you can publish it for all the world to see.
After all that work, you now have a fully-functioning blog and the foundations of what will soon be a money-making business. Yes, it’s that simple!
How do you make money from blogging?
Starting a blog, then witnessing it doing well, getting traffic, and growing is incredibly fulfilling. It makes all the hard work you’re doing well worth it.
But you know what’s even more fulfilling?
Finally earning real money from your blog.
It doesn’t matter if it’s only a few cents or a couple of dollars at first. What matters is that those few cents or bucks already show that the process truly works. They are like a drizzle after a long drought, a sign, a promise of greater things to come.
But before you get too excited about the prospect of an income, let’s answer some real questions about earning money from blogging.
Do people really earn from blogging?
If blogging isn’t profitable, then it would have died out years ago. There’s a reason blogging is still alive and kicking more than twenty six years since the first ever recognized blog.
Besides, if blogging isn’t profitable, then why else would bloggers bother? Blogging for passion alone is well and good, but it can’t – and it won’t – put food on the table or pay the bills.
How much can I earn from blogging?
Your income depends on a number of factors, such as your blogging niche, the size of your audience, the demographics of your audience, how engaged your audience is, your monetization strategy, how often you write and post articles or entries, how well you write, what kind of content you produce, etc.
Theoretically, your income potential is unlimited.
But there is no guarantee on how much money you can make from blogging. Some bloggers earn hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars a year. Others don’t even make a single cent. Some bloggers earn a full-time income from blogging. Others struggle to even reach a livable wage.
How soon can I earn money from blogging?
Same answer. It depends.
A few months. Sometimes a year or so. Very rarely do bloggers make a substantial income before then.
But if you want to know, blogging is not a get-rich-quick scheme. If you need money now, then blogging is probably not the best option for you.
After all, blogging is a long-term investment that requires long-term commitment. And like all businesses, you need to put in the necessary time and the effort.
But if you’re prepared to put in the work, then you can build yourself a very lucrative business that generates you passive income up to your retirement and beyond – all from the comfort and safety of your own home, or wherever you choose to work from, really.
What are the best ways to earn money from blogging?
When it comes to making money off blogging, bloggers actually have a broad range of options. The most successful bloggers use a combination of different income streams to rake in hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars a year!
That being said, let’s go over the most popular, most reliable, and most profitable ways you can earn from your blog.
1. Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is essentially a marketing model where you promote someone else’s product and you get compensated in return, usually with a commission from a successful sale of said product.
It’s actually a very simple process. Companies or brands whose products you are endorsing will give you your affiliate link. Your job is to promote that affiliate link on your blog or social media. When people click that link, it sends them to the company’s website where they can purchase the product. And if they do purchase the product, you earn a commission.
Globally, affiliate marketing is a massive industry worth billions of dollars, and that is only projected to grow in the next years. In fact, 81% of brands today now offer some form of affiliate program to bloggers, influencers, and other online endorsers.
The world’s largest online retailer, Amazon, has one of the largest and most successful affiliate marketing programs ever, Amazon Associates.
Another one of the most popular and most profitable affiliate programs is offered by Bluehost, our preferred web hosting service provider for this guide and tutorial.
Affiliate marketing is no doubt one of the most common and lucrative means to earn off your blog. As has already been mentioned, around 35% of affiliate marketers earn over $20,000 yearly in passive income, while the top affiliate marketers can pull in as much as $10,000 a day!
2. Selling digital products
Another way to make money off your blog is by selling digital products. A digital product is a product that is stored, delivered, and used in its electronic format. It doesn’t have physical or tangible form or substance. Digital products are easy to distribute, relatively low-risk and low-maintenance, and require no inventory.
So if there’s a chance someone will buy, you can sell digital products via your blog, such as:
- Online courses, classes, and workshops
- Photos, audios, or videos
- Apps, plug-ins, themes, or templates
In fact, there are plenty of bloggers who make most of their income from selling their own products online.
3. Selling physical products
Apart from digital products, you can also sell physical products on your blog, such as:
- T-shirts, mugs, and button pins
The old-fashioned display and cost-per-click ads, some of the first and oldest ways to make money from blogging, still aren’t gone.
In fact, if anything, they’re becoming even more popular as advertisers increase their spending on mobile ads. In 2019, mobile advertising spending worldwide amounted to $189 billion, and it is expected to surpass $240 billion by 2022.
Plus, many of the largest and most popular ad networks, such as Google Adsense, are now using more modern and organic ad designs, and intelligent ad placement, to make sure that the ads being displayed fit the look of your blog/website, are not too obtrusive and annoying, and are placed in the most ideal parts of your blog/website.
5. Sponsored content
Sponsored content is simply online material you create – and paid for by a company – to promote, endorse, and talk about that company’s products or services through blog posts, articles, or entries. Examples of sponsored content include paid product reviews and testimonials.
Sponsored content is becoming a more popular, more preferable, and more effective way for companies to advertise their products and services. After all, statistics show that 70% of people would rather learn about a company through articles rather than advertisements.
Sponsored content generates big money. In 2019, for a single sponsored blog post alone, an average blogger with a fairly sizeable audience could expect to earn around $1,442! In comparison, a sponsored blog post in 2014 earned, on average, only $407. In 2006, it netted a measly $7.39!
5. Membership or subscription fees
You can also make money off blogging by charging users to access your content or certain areas of your website.
For instance, you can start a blog and hide your content behind a paywall, then ask visitors to pay a certain amount to access it.
You can also turn your blog into an exclusive membership site, and require people to pay a set fee for a membership or subscription to access your content.
Or you can keep your website free for all, but offer premium content just to people willing to pay for them.
You can also offer certain features, such as private forums or members-only areas, to paying customers.
Just make sure that what you offer – content, features, or otherwise – are actually worth paying for.
7. Consulting, coaching, or public speaking
If you’ve already earned substantial clout in the blogging and online world, you can turn your influence and expertise into a money-making opportunity by offering consulting, coaching, or speaking services.
Depending on your expertise, experience, and reputation, you can charge a set fee to speak at a blogging conference; to offer design consultations for one room (if you’re an interior designer); or offer life advice and guidance through coaching sessions (if you’re a life coach), etc.
8. Offering other related services
Apart from the services mentioned above, you can also hire out your other blogging-related skills to paying customers. As a blogger, you obviously have learned and built up a number of skills that other people can only dream of, such as:
- writing, researching, and proofreading
- web development and web design
- graphic design
- photography and video editing
- digital marketing and social media management
- search engine optimization (SEO)
9. Selling blogs/websites (yours or otherwise)
You can also make money by selling blogs or websites – literally. There are people out there looking to buy established websites already. So if you can start a blog and direct good traffic to it, you can sell it to people who want to have their own website but don’t want to bother themselves with the startup process.
But of course, you need to have the expertise to start and grow blogs/websites, and the knowledge to understand what types of websites are in demand and how to price and sell them.
Finally, you can also earn an income through donations. You simply set up a Patreon account or link to your PayPal accounts, banks accounts, etc., for people who are willing to make a contribution.
However, this only works if there are people in your audience who are very loyal, generous, and passionate about you or your blog; and are willing to financially support and sustain you in the most direct way possible.
So make sure you produce only the best content and that you cultivate meaningful relationships with your audience in order to build trust and loyalty.
Start a blog today
Starting a blog is a very fulfilling endeavor. From your first struggles in setting it up, to watching it grow slowly but surely, everything is worth it, especially when you find out that you are actually helping people as well as helping yourself in the process.
It’s also a very enriching experience. From the skills you learn, the people you connect with, to the passive income you earn, everything about blogging serves to make you a richer and better person.
But you won’t know all of these unless you start a blog.
So start yours today. Sure it might take a while. But remember Earl Nightingale’s words:
“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”