How To Start A Blog and Make Money in 2021?

blogging for beginners, online start-ups

Have you always wanted to start a profitable blog? Have you been intensely searching for how to start a blog and make money from it? But everything seems quite daunting to you.

I know you, I can relate to you. I have been there. I started out as a hobby blogger and then became a freelance content writer on the internet. Then I took up courses and gained expertise in fields like SEO, blogging, Guest post writing, and so on.

So, let me first tell you that I have enough experience in trying to open WordPress accounts and websites without knowing the industry. They failed and guess what. I learnt-Big time and that was the right approach for me.

But I don’t want you to go through that path, it’s long, lonely and you almost quit every single day.

I want you to lead a happy, successful and fulfilling life with the choice of your career!

What You Need To Know Before You Start A Blog and Make Money

A small Overview!

  1. You need to know what hosting, domain name, and blogging platform(CMS) means.
  2. You need to know that if you want an open profitable blog, you need to open your self-hosted website on wordpress.org and not on any other platforms that provide “free hosting services”

 Know that WordPress.com and WordPress.org are two different companies!

3. You need to find your perfect niche and target audience- this is the base for any business to thrive.

4. You need SEO knowledge- because google and your readers need the same thing: Quality-authority, trustworthiness, and readability. These are called as factors influencing how your website post or page will rank on google

Have you noticed that when you google search something, you end up getting a perfect answer from the links on Google’s first page?

Well, can your website land on google’s first page and solve the reader’s problems?

You need to know SEO- take my word for it and take the SEO e-book that I have created.

5. You need to know which social media platforms work well for your business.

6. You need to be brave enough to ask questions, initiate conversations, discussion on Facebook groups, webinars to start something! AND CREATE A COMMUNITY.

7. Your Mindset before starting your blog, i.e you have to have clarity on what your whole blog/website is about!

So let’s start off. Remember, I will be there to guide you for the first 1 week when you click on subscribe to my email list below.

Mail me and I promise to guide you through the process, wherever you are stuck. Likewise, join my inner circle of DigiSprout Facebook group and have like-minded ambitious people to help around!

WHY DO YOU NEED A GOOD DOMAIN NAME AND GOOD HOSTING

If you want to blog on a free platform like blogger, wix, wordpress.com. You can. But not much can be obtained from it.

I started my blogging journey as a hobby fictional blogger on www.brundaoperan.wordpress.com . Look at my blunders.

First- The domain name is bad. It has to be short, easy to remember.

It can be niche related like mine brandtheyou.com Or unique like www.shoutmeloud.com . The take is yours as long as you can build a brand around that name.

What is the second mistake you find in the domain name?

Well, it is the extension. As you can see, www.brundaoperan.wordpress.com has a long extension of wordpress.com. This means that my blog is free and is hosted by WordPress. If one-day WordPress decides to remove my blog. They can easily do so.

Because I’m renting a space, they are providing me a virtual space to live and write my thoughts, they very well have conditions and free to cut any useful features out there!

You Cannot Generate Revenue Through Ads on Free Hosting

Also, on free hosting, you cannot apply to revenue-generating sites like Google Adsense and you can’t even use plugins. I will shortly tell you what plugins are and how important they are to your blog success.

SO I can’t stress enough but YOU NEED TO SELF HOST YOUR WEBSITE/BLOG.

  1. Select a good domain name from Godaddy or Namecheap
  2. Buy a hosting service from Bluehost, Siteground or chemicloud! I would recommend Blueshost for total beginners!
  3. Connect WordPress through the service provider. So don’t worry about opening a new account on WordPress. Your hosting service provider will help you connect to WordPress directly.
  4. Select a good theme-

You can select a theme of your choice from a lot of free WordPress themes. It is said that Astra is an amazing theme.

I went with the paid theme-DIVI as I have a lot of options and as I am a non-technical person without much knowledge in coding. Guess what, this theme doesn’t need coding to design.

Read my whole journey with Divi installation to building the website.

Raw Materials To Start A Blog

Save money to invest in your blog.

If you want to open a successful blog, then you need to invest some money, even though you will have the opportunity to start your blog for free, don’t go with it(it’s tempting) but it has got many drawbacks.

So let’s see, you are a new blogger and less money at your disposal.

Then You should invest it on at least two things

  • Domain Name
  • Hosting Service

Actionable Plan to start a money-making blog 

1. Decide on your niche

Yes, blogging to make money is not about owning a personal blog and publishing about all the things under the sun. You got to think about your readers aka customers who will visit your blog to gain information or change the way they live.

I have chosen my niche as “Blogging” , you won’t find any recipe or dog care! But just how do you find your niche?

There are a few questions that you need to answer before deciding on the topic:

  • How passionate are you about the topic?
  • If you are not an expert, are you passionate about researching the niche and improving your knowledge?
  • Is your profitable niche going to help your readers- Educate, Inspire, Entertain them?
  • If so, can you guide them further, give them examples, provide solutions to their questions?

Now, Go, open a new business Pinterest account.

What is a Blog Niche?

Well, to simplify, a blog niche is a category that you are going to invest your time researching, validating, and creating content on your blog/website.

Know the difference between blog and website now!

So how are you going to know whether your selected niche will drive traffic and helps you make money? Because you want to start a blog and make money from it.

Actionable Steps To Find Your Niche- Using Pinterest Social Media

Well, I have a simple trick- Using Pinterest!

Go, open a Pinterest account. Yes, you heard me right. We are going to use social media to find out about your interest.

Go to Pinterest.com and sign up. All the screenshots are taken from a webinar video I was making! So ignore my photo and the video buttons.

Next, create a business account, it asks for your website name. Click on the “I don’t have a website yet” button and continue.

Later, find things that you are most passionate about. Like cycling, gardening, blogging about blogging, food, tech, pets, cultures. Anything. Explore these topics and start creating new boards for a particular category.

Example- If you are passionate about Baking. Then create boards like- Birthday themed cakes, baking tips, Easy cakes for beginners, gluten-free cakes, cookie recipes, chocolate cake recipes.

See, how you are going to deepen your selected category.

Start searching and then start pinning to the respective categories.

After doing this strategy for a month. Go to Pinterest analytics and look for the top-performing board. Let me show you mine.

As you can see, there is a section called Top boards and it is based on the number of impressions, engagements, clicks etc and my top board is Start your blog, next is Passive income and brand your business.

I have around 20 boards that are on the same niche as blogging like social media marketing, Pinterest marketing, and other sub-categories that I am really interested in and keep researching. Out of them. These 3 are amazing because people are actually searching for this and you are also passionate about the topic.

Hence these become your niche.

My primary niche is “start a blog” and sub-niche are branding your business, grow your blog. Check the drop-down menu at the top of my blog! Did you get it?

I am just not asking you to follow your passion but am giving you an idea of how to leverage the social media channels to your benefit of profitable blogging.

Once you have tried and tested this method. Drop me a mail! Study your interests by creating different boards. around 30 different boards and accommodate all the ideas. Follow that step by step instructions I have given above!

If you are totally new to Pinterest or do not know how it works, please read the Ultimate Guide to Use Pinterest For Your Business.

In the meantime.

2. Search for a desirable Domain Name

You need to choose a domain name and pay for it. Find cheap domian names in Godaddy.com and namecheap.com.

Not all the domain names you like will be available for your budget! So you need to make some compromises when you want the domain name of your choice.

How to Select a Good Domain Name For Your Business Blog?

NOTE: Almost all hosting service providers say that you will be given a free domain name if you choose them.

But the problem with this is, it is free as long as you are using their hosting. If you dissatisfied with their service. then while transferring your website to another host, there will be downtime which is not good for the website’s health.

3. SELECT A HOSTING

Open an account in Bluehost if you are a beginner. I did that, I stayed with them for a year.

The best part of Bluehost is that they have one-click installation of WordPress. No hassles.

But as the server is used by many people all over the world, they will not be able to dedicate time to solve your website related problems ASAP. Hence if you are just beginning then Bluehost is a good option.

BUT I chose Chemicloud

Reasons why I chose chemicloud

  1. They provide good customer support and listens to my problems gets it fixed quickly
  2. I stay in Bangalore, India, they provide a dedicated server in Bangalore. Hence the geography actually helps my website load faster and gives a better performance.
Look for the orange dots on the map to know the server nearest to you!

3. Select a Theme

WordPress provides a lot of free themes for you to customize.

The best free themes are

  • Astra along with the Elementor plugin
  • The best feminine theme is bluchic
  • The Best premium paid theme is Divi

How Do you customize your theme, the brand colors, the brand fonts, and even the writing style is important while branding your blog?

Please read this article on………..to customize the WordPress theme.

4. Put Your Blog On Maintenance Mode

If you are going to give the designing part to a web developer, then you need not have to worry about the whole process.

But this is you, a single man/woman army. So you need to know that until you fill in the content pages, your blog has to on maintenance mode or coming soon mode.

What Do You need to do?

Go to plugins on the dashboard>select Add New> In the search bar, type coming soon( the seedpro option will be available).

Install and activate the plugin.

Also design it with your choice of words, background image or background color.

Then return back to building your content on your website.

5. Delete Your Default “Hello World” page

Once you login to your website. There will be a default “Hello World Page”.

To delete this

>Go to wordpress dashboard

>Click on posts>all posts

>You will see the post “Hello World”.

>Click On Trash and delete to start anew with a site structure.

5. Site Structure- Page Content

Decide on what pages you will be displayed in the navigational bar of your website.

The best practice is to include

  1. Home/start here page
  2. About Me/ About Us page
  3. Contact Me Page
  4. Work with Me page
  5. Services page
  6. Blog
  7. Privacy policy
  8. Disclaimers
  9. Your main categories

6. HAVE A CONTENT STRATEGY

I cannot stress the importance of this. You can go buy a domain name, host, and a theme. But if you start writing without a strategy, please don’t expect huge results.

This is where SEO is going to play an important role.

Read the Actions to be taken Now

Now not every page is necessary. It depends on your niche but don’t forget to include the first 3 pages. It’s kinda standard. Later, study some blogs on your niche and come up with page name ideas.

You can place 2 menus depending on the theme you choose. In the second menu that will be displayed somewhere in the footer or sidebar, you can include a privacy policy page, disclaimer page and contact page.

Choose where you want it to go.

6. Widgets

Again, if yours is a free theme, then go to the appearance section on the dashboard and click on widgets.

You can add from the lot. check out the image.

7. Install Plugins

Plugins are small applications on WordPress that make things easier for you to run your website.

Here is an article for the list of useful plugins that are required for you to set up a successful blog and running.

Yoast SEO is a highly recommended plugin. Go explore the plugins area on your WordPress dashboard. Try to get comfortable with the WordPress dashboard options. Explore it.

Also remember, plugins are to be used moderately. So don’t go by installing every plugin that you are attracted to. Some might have bugs with them, and some might slow down your website altogether.

8. Start Your Email List

Now, I know, you would be like, I am still new to it.

No, it’s always better to start your blogging journey with a freebie that you are going to give to your readers in exchange for their email address.

Start creating a simple checklist in your category and put it in your email optin.

Remember, not everything is going to remain the same, technologies keep updating, the system keeps changing. So, you need to have your followers connected to you through emails. In the future, when you launch your product, these people likely to buy it from you.

You need to integrate your mail service provider with your website.

9. Start Writing

Blog posts, blog pages, the cornerstone articles and call to action trigger on required places.

So writing can be daunting at first, well because you are going to invest a lot of your time here but nobody gets to read your articles then its a waste.

 So first check this article on how to create a blog post that brings readers . I talk about blog structure, anatomy and how you can write it so that Google loves you and puts you on the first page.

Pro Tip- When you cannot create and face a writer’s block. Start documenting. Because this is your own journey and only you can do this well in an authentic way.

10. Promote- Writing is Never Enough

Whatever you write must reach your audience. So share it on your social media sites. You are going to get backlinks which is a huge benefit for your website. Share your knowledge. Help people on quora by answering to their questions on quora.
– Write articles on Medium- Your journey.

Share your writing pics and episodes of achievement and craziness on Instagram and Facebook.

Join Facebook groups and grow your blog by helping others.

Take-Away Lesson

Blogging is a profession where you will be helping other readers to excel in their life, career, organization, or whatever your niche is.

You are providing service to the society.

Never underestimate what you can do.

Now just don’t skip to another article or images to consume information.

Start implementing.

If you want me to guide you through the exact steps for opening a blog. Then it’s time that you invest just 10 dollars into my detailed e-book — “The Practical Blog Guide”

Just imagine if you are opening a storefront. Imagine the investment.

Blogging is a lot easier and a much cheaper option with less investment of money.

Here your time into learning the field is the primary investment.

Come-on don’t wait. Be a successful blogger and start a blog that makes money and retire early into the life you have always wanted to live!

Also read

Types of Blogs that make money

How Do Bloggers Exactly Earn Money Blogging

Author

Author

Brunda Sunil

She likes all things words, having worked as an SEO content writer for seven years in different industries. She now passionately works as an SEO content strategist and entrepreneur. She helps start-ups, solopreneurs and personal brands with high-quality SEO content for generating organic traffic through content strategy and a holistic SEO approach to rank the client’s website on google’s first page.

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