Do you have a desire to launch your own blog but don’t know where to start? Whether you want to share your talents through blogging, express your thoughts, share your knowledge, or even make money through a blog, starting a blog can help you grow in the online world and build your professional network in the real world.
How to Create a Successful Blog
So if you want to create a blog in 2021, you have landed in just the right place. Use these easy steps for beginners to start a blog right away. No, you don’t need to be a professional web developer to get started! You can create your blog site with the basic guide and right information and start a successful blog in no time.
Download These Free Blogging Tools!
Use this comprehensive guide to help you get started with launching your first blog:
Pick the Perfect Blog Niche
The first thing you want to do in your blogging career is select a distinct niche for your blog. The niche refers to a particular topic that you have expertise in and want to cover in great detail. And for that, there are two key points that you should keep in mind.
Make sure to pick a niche that resonates with your passion and interest.
Secondly, keep in mind that the niche you are choosing has enough audience interest. (This means the topics that people are searching for.)
After confirming your niche, you can also validate your niche by using a three-step formula which includes:
1.) The niche size, either it is macro or micro topic.
2.) Scrutinizing your blogging competitors in the same niche.
3.) Analyzing monetization potential by making sure that your niche is profitable too. Do this especially if you want to make a living too through blogging.
Some of the most profitable blog niches include:
- Personal finance
- “Mommy” blogs
- Arts & crafts
- Home decor
These are very broad niches so you can of course get much more specific with your topics. For example, if you want to start a food blog, you could get very specific and offer gluten-free/dairy-free recipes. Or if you want to blog about traveling, you could narrow down your niche to traveling with dogs.
With these things in mind, what will your main blog topic be about?
Choose a Blogging Platform
Now comes the decision to select an online platform for your blog. This is an essential and important step in the process because blogging management software can directly affect the visibility of your blog.
A couple of online free hosted platforms that bloggers use, including Tumbler.com or Blogger.com, come with certain limitations. If your main goal is to turn your blog into a business, then you should avoid a free blogging platform and invest in one instead.
So it is always better to start with a self-hosted blog like WordPress, where you are fully in charge of your blog and its contents. A WordPress blog is probably the best blogging platform out there because it comes with so many customizations and plugins.
Other options include Squarespace and Wix, which provide customizable templates in their subscriptions. However, they don’t provide plugins so you have to do some research and find plugins created by web developers.
Think of an Interesting Blog Name for Your Blog Site
Think of a unique and interesting blog name for your blog that should be able to grab the reader’s attention. It is better to select a name that matches your niche requirement. It will make your content authentic and more visible online.
Choose a Website Host
Website hosting makes sure that your content remains online and visible 24/7. Therefore, it is important to select a reliable hosting service as the performance and functionality of your blog largely depend on your blog hosting.
Mostly, hosting companies provide you with a free domain for one year when you buy their hosting services. ( A domain is your blog’s unique URL address by which you will be known online regardless of what niche you choose.)
Bluehost is the most recommended hosting service to create a blogging site in the modern world. It even lets you change your domain name if you don’t like the first one.
Starting a Blog on WordPress
By far. WordPress software is a popular technology that is holding a 90 percent-plus market share in the US. Many famous bloggers use this platform to create more functional and profitable blogs.
It is easy to set up, and it will cost only a few dollars per month for a hosting account and around 11 dollars per year for a domain. The actual blogging software remains free to use. This is a preferred platform to create and start a blog for all serious bloggers.
Select a Template or Theme for Your Website
After making your blog site on a blogging platform, the next thing your blog will need is a template or a theme. It is like a face or a design or a layout of your blog.
If you are going to set up your blog on WordPress, there are more than enough free themes available for you to choose from. You can select a theme that not only looks great but also works for your specific needs.
Also, make sure to disclose your affiliate disclaimer. Keep it visible and plain, and keep your audience know if you participate in any kind of affiliate association.
Create a Google Analytics Account
Make a google analytic account as it will help you track your website activity, including session duration, bounce rates, individuals using the site, and the information about the source of the traffic on your site.
Download the Essential Plugins (like Yoast, Grow)
Plugins can help your site look unique and different. Add essential plugins like Yoast or grow social, which can help in optimizing your content for search engines and increasing your interactions and social media shares.
Understand Who Your Target Audience Is
It is necessary to understand who your audience will be to create the right content for the right people because you don’t want to write teen content when your audience is going to be mostly adults or vice versa.
Write About Topics People Search For
While writing in your favorite niche, make sure that it is not something that you are writing just for your own sake. Make sure that what you are writing is also what people are searching for.
Do Your Keyword Research
By doing keyword research, you will be able to know what kind of content people want at the moment. It will help you write the exact content offering all the information to people, making them come to your site again and again.
Don’t skip over keyword research or you may have a hard time showing up in search results. While it may feel tedious, it’s an important step toward ranking in the search engine.
Write Valuable Content
Your content will be valueless if it does not offer your audience any help. Try to write high-quality content. Write in simple and easy-to-understand language. Use catchy headings and attention-grabbing titles to attract more readers.
If you need help writing blog posts, you can hire amazing ghostwriters on Fiverr, Upwork, or through networking in Facebook groups. This can be a great way to grow your blog faster because the more high-quality content you publish, the sooner you will get organic traffic to your blog.
The key is to publish blog posts on a regular basis, whether you write all the content yourself or hire freelancers.
Types of Popular Posts
If you’re unsure of what to write about, here are some popular posts that perform well on Google and social media: lists, how to’s, checklists, and reviews.
Understand SEO Before Publishing the Content
Search engine optimization is a critical factor in blogging. Following the best practices for SEO can help you rank on the first page of Google with the right keywords.
Understanding SEO techniques are important to make your content rank on the first page. Learn about basic SEO to know about optimizing your content for search engines. This includes writing for your audience first, using keyword-rich phrases, making punching headlines, and structuring your posts well.
Create Lead Magnets to Grow an Email List
A lead magnet is a product that you offer for free in exchange for a reader to sign up for your email list. These are also known as email opt-ins and content upgrades. They can include checklists, discount codes, workbooks, ebooks, and more.
Create a lead magnet by offering something valuable to your readers. People usually respond to offers that fix something for them. Therefore, you should try to offer a solution or solve their problem.
You can also do it by promising and delivering at least one result in a way that your subscribers should be able to use your lead magnet to achieve something. It will eventually lead your email list to grow rapidly.
After you add new subscribers to your email list, you can use email marketing to grow your website traffic even further. Create an email sequence that sends them your best blog content.
Promote Your Content on Social Media
Finally, promote your content on different social media apps to attract more visibility to your content. You can also use paid traffic avenues such as social media advertising on Instagram, Facebook, a Youtube channel, or search engine advertising via Google ads.
This will help your content to gain exposure and recognition before the organic traffic takes hold of your site.
Promote Your Content on Pinterest
Pinterest is also a great strategy for growing a blog. You can learn more about Pinterest marketing here!
How to Monetize a Blog
Can you really make money blogging? Yes, you can, but there is a lot of hard work that goes into monetizing a blog.
When you’re first getting started, you may want to hold off on running ads on your website. Google Adsense allows new bloggers to plug ads into their websites, however, they make pennies until they have decent rankings in the search engines and bring in high-quality organic website traffic.
When your blog has enough monthly sessions, you can apply for affiliate programs through Mediavine, Adthrive, ShareaSale, RewardStyle, and many more.
Bloggers also monetize their blogs through affiliate marketing. Affiliate links are URLs that you can include in your blog posts that can help you earn commissions on products and online courses.
How to Be Successful
Work smart. Work hard. Be consistent and be prepared to work hard and learn new things.
Is it a lot of work to operate a blog? Yes, it is, but don’t give up. The work is very rewarding and a lot of fun! While you may not earn much of an income in the first year of blogging, you can use this time to learn and expand your blog.
Did you find this step-by-step guide helpful? Good luck to you on your blogging adventures!
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