This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I may earn a small commission at no cost to you if you make a purchase through the links.
Did you know that there are over 30 million active bloggers in the US alone? So can you imagine how many blogs are there in the whole wide world?
With that amount of blogs out there, you might be thinking, “Why even bother starting a blog?”
True. But can you imagine the number of people in the world as well?
Don’t ever let that stop you.
No one else has your unique set of ideas, opinions, or experiences.
There are thousands of people out there ready to read your take on your topic. So, push on and give it your all.
If you learn how to successfully start a blog, you can still have your own readers, your own community.
You can still stand out from the crowd and be a successful blogger.
And by starting your blog the right way early on, you are building a great foundation and set yourself up for success.
So how would you successfully start a blog?
SET THE STAGE
When you start a blog, it is crucial that you need to set the stage. By doing this, you will have a clearer picture of how your business will look like.
FIND YOUR WHY
Every blogger has a purpose why they started blogging, and you are not an exception. You should be able to come up with at least a couple of why you wanted to blog.
Some of your “why” may be to have a creative outlet or you want to change people’s lives.
I started blogging because of two reasons; to document our personal finance journey and to eventually make money.
SET YOUR GOALS
After finding your purpose, you need to set clear goals for yourself. It needs to be something that can motivate you when your blogging journey gets tough.
By having goals, you will most likely achieve your purpose. Write down your big goals and break them down into smaller achievable goals.
CULTIVATE THE RIGHT MINDSET
Before starting your incredible blogging journey, you have to have the right mindset. As a beginner, you will find that it will be pretty overwhelming at first.
There will be so many things to learn that you’ll find yourself tempted to throw in the towel.
However, if you do a little each day, believe in yourself, and keep on going, everything will work out just fine.
And if you’re just blogging for the money, you may find that you will not be able to quit your job sooner than you expected.
I am not saying that you will not make money, because YOU WILL! It will just take time, hard work, and a lot of patience.
FIND YOUR PERFECT BLOGGING NICHE
When you just start blogging, it is normal to want to start blogging about everything that you think about.
You start to think that if you blog about a lot of things, then your reader will never leave your site. She will have everything she needs on your website.
WRONG. It’s basically FOMO(fear of missing out).
When you start targeting everyone, you’re basically attracting no one.
I started with a very broad niche, and it was a disaster. It slowed down my growth because I have no focus.
The more niched your blog is, the better you’ll be.
WHAT IS YOUR PASSION
Choosing a topic to blog about can be hard, but you can start with what you are passionate about.
What’s your expertise? What do people you’re good at?
However, you do not need to be an expert on something before you blog about it.
You can blog about your experience in your journey or how you achieved something.
For example, you can blog about your journey to becoming a first-time mom or your journey to early retirement.
The skills you developed from your journey will set you apart from other bloggers and will appeal to tour readers.
Your niche should be something that you will be excited to talk about for many years to come.
It should be something you can write about again and again.
While it is important that you should be passionate about what you will blog about, it is also crucial to choose the niche that will be profitable.
Some of the areas that people are willing to pay for our health, wealth, and relationship.
People are passionate about this because they want to be healthy, feel good, live longer, and have energy.
People are passionate about their money. They want to make money, save money, and build wealth.
A relationship is something that people cannot do without because they are social beings.
These categories are broad and can be broken down further into more specific niches.
For example, you can niche down Health into Healthy Diet, which can be niche further down to Gluten-Free Diet For Beginners.
The same with wealth. You can niche it down to Making money, which can be niche down further to Making Money From Home.
You can niche down Relationship into Dating, which can be niched further to Dating for Divorced Women Under 50.
SELECT A GREAT DOMAIN NAME
It would help if you came up with a domain name that is easy to spell. The last thing you want is to have your domain name misspelled once you start sharing your blog.
Your domain name needs to be something that is catchy and easy to remember. A catchy and easy to remember domain will make you stand out from the crowd.
Choose a domain name that is unique and suits your brand. If your blog is in the food industry, don’t pick a domain name related to the auto industry.
When your readers see your domain name, they should be able to know what your blog is all about.
Last but not least, make sure your domain is not already taken. Use websites like whois.com or namechk.com to check if your chosen domain name is still available.
CHOOSE THE BEST WEB HOST
You can always go with a free platform, but if you are serious about blogging and want to make money from it, you need to be self-hosted.
Having a self-hosted site will allow you to completely own your website and have full control and free will to monetize it.
And choosing the best web host to sign up can get really confusing because there are a lot of options.
There are important things you need to consider when choosing the best web host.
- Affordable Plans
- Easy to Install
- Free Add ons
- Great Customer Service
Some of the good ones are Siteground, Hostgator, and GoDaddy.
Godaddy does not have an outstanding reputation among bloggers, especially their customer service. However, I have been using them for my domains, and when I create microsites. So far, I have yet to have a problem.
Meanwhile, Siteground has an excellent reputation for excellent customer service, security, and speed. It offers free 1-click WordPress install, free security, and cache features for speed and FREE SSL certificate. However, you do not get a FREE domain.
On the other hand, when you sign up for Hostgator, you will get a FREE domain and ONE YEAR FREE domain registration. You will also get a FREE SSL certificate and instant back up.
If you are looking for a cheaper alternative for Siteground, Hostgator is the way to go. There is no contract, and you free to cancel anytime.
SET UP YOUR WORDPRESS BLOG CORRECTLY
Now that you’ve chosen a great web host, you now want to create your WordPress blog. You can follow this step by step guide to create a WordPress site.
BUILD YOUR WORDPRESS BLOG DILIGENTLY
After setting up your WordPress site, the next step is crucial. You now want to set up the foundation of your blog.
Check out this step by step guide to building a WordPress site.
BRAND YOUR BUSINESS
A brand is the face of your business. This includes your logo, color, font, etc.
The look and feel of your brand are going to be the first impression your soon-to-be readers see when they visit your site.
It can be the deciding factor whether or not you are professional enough for them to follow, subscribe to, and buy from.
By having a brand, you will also make it easier for your readers to recognize your business from anywhere.
Here are some quick branding tips:
- Select 2-4 colors that complement each other and consistently use only those colors in all of your brandings
- Choose 1-2 fonts and stick with those fonts only
- Make sure your branding is easy to read – the simpler, the better
My friend, Emma, created a really good course on how to brand your business, check it out here.
CREATE AND NURTURE YOUR AVATAR
Now that you “niched” down and created an amazing website, it’s time to start identifying who your ideal customer is and start writing your blog posts to them directly.
Create your avatar. Define who they are and where they live. What are their likes and dislikes? What jobs do they do? What are they struggling with?
Having a targeted audience will help you create helpful content that your audience will actually read.
CREATE HELPFUL CONTENT
Content is the very core of your blog. This is the reason why people come to your blog. Every article should have a purpose and solves a problem.
On deciding what topics to write about, you should think about what your niche target market wants to read.
Focus on their pain points. How can you help and teach them with your blog?
Go where your niche target market hangs out, such as online forums and Facebook groups.
Read their problems, questions, and comments, and you will find tons of inspiration for blog topics.
Then do keyword research. A keyword is a word or group of words that someone might type on Google when searching for something.
Choosing the right keyword will help your content be found on search results.
You can use a free tool like Ubersuggest or Google search itself.
You can learn more about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) later on. For now, focus on setting up the foundation.
PROMOTE YOUR BLOG
Now, after you hit “Publish” and launched your blog, it’s time to move on to the next part of your blogging journey.
And that is all about growing your online presence, generating traffic, and – finally – setting up the revenue sources that will make your blog turn a profit.
You want to promote your content through social media marketing and also email marketing.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
Social media marketing is the activity of promoting your blog, brand, products, and links to social media platforms to gain traffic, attention, and sales.
You can start a Facebook Page for your blog, create an account for Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram.
Socialize and engage with others in your niche. Comment on their blogs, share their content, feature them in your posts.
Every time you engage, answer questions and share your expertise online, you’re building your online presence and your credibility as an authority in your niche.
Share your content across your social media and be consistent. Use smart scheduling tools to put your content on autopilot.
I use Tailwind for scheduling my pins and SmarterQueue to schedule my posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
As you begin your blogging career, you want to make it a top priority to focus on growing your email list. Then make it your #1 focus to nurture them.
Having an email list of subscribers who read your emails is a sure-fire way to promote your blog and eventually make money online.
And it’s never too early to start building your list. So if you haven’t started one yet, start now.
MONETIZE YOUR BLOG APPROPRIATELY
There are a lot of ways to monetize your blog; however, you always need to consider your avatar. Don’tDon’t just slap an affiliate link or an ad on your blog and call it a day.
Think twice, even ten times, if it’s going to help your avatar. Does it help with their pain points?
During the early days of my blogging journey, I was “chasing” the money. Every affiliate that I came across, I applied. And as soon as I got accepted, I started promoting it on my blog. I was eager to make money.
Wondering how much I made?
I made nothing because it did not align with my readers. I was not solving their problems. Neither was I helping with their struggles. I just wasted my time and effort.
So before you start promoting a product, think of your avatar first.
TRACK YOUR INCOME AND EXPENSES
Tracking your income and expenses from the start is very important. Remember, you are now a business owner.
You need a simple budget to plan how much money is coming in and how much is going out. You want to have organized finance come tax season.
As a new blogger, try to keep your expenses as low as possible. If there is an upgrade available for a tool that you use, but the free version still works, stick with the free version for now.
Always think of profits first. You need income to keep your business afloat. However, if your blog is not bringing in money yet, look for some side hustles that you can do for now as you grow your business.
TREAT YOUR BLOG AS A BUSINESS
You will likely succeed if you treat your blog as a business. As a business owner, you will invest time, money, and effort into your blog.
You will strive to consistently create content that is informative and helpful to your readers.
You will also set goals and come up with strategies that will help you reach your goals.
And most importantly, when you treat your blog as a business, you will most likely strive to succeed and never quit.
PROTECT YOUR BLOG
As a beginner blogger, it is entirely normal to be overwhelmed and overlook the legalities of blogging. I didn’t have any idea either when I started blogging.
However, the sooner you make your blog legal, the better off you’ll be. Besides, you worked so hard on your blog that you’ve invested a lot of time, money, and effort into it. Therefore, you deserve the peace of mind by protecting yourself from lawsuits.
To create these pages for your blog, you can hire a lawyer, which can be really costly. I would not recommend this for a beginner blogger. Remember, you are trying to keep your expenses down.
You can also use free legal templates that are available on the internet, which I doubt if they are compliant enough with the laws.
The last option is through paid legal templates written by a lawyer. I went this route because I’dI’d rather have pages professionally written by a lawyer. It doesn’t cost a much as hiring a lawyer, and it is deficient as that of a free legal template.
There you have it! Those are some of the tips on how to successfully start a blog.
Blogging is a marathon of ups and downs. Although you will not make thousands of money tomorrow, by creating a great blog first, you are in for a soon-to-be profitable blog.