If you’re reading this, I want you to know that I’ve been in your shoes. And as scary as it may seem, if you really want this and put in the work- it will be worth it. You can start a blog and make a profit in the first month.
If this is the thousandth Pinterest post you’ve read and you’re still looking for that inspiration to help you take the leap. Stop looking. Just do it! You’ll be glad you started.
If you’ve been contemplating quitting your job to blog and be a stay at home parent. You need to go ahead and start your blog now.
What I’ve Heard
Through all the FB groups, classes, and blogging peers:
- It takes 2.5 years to start making a “full time” income on your blog (start now)
- You must have affiliate links
- You must have an email list
- SEO is a big deal
- Own your content
You’ve already found your inspiration to start blogging. If you need inspiration for writing you’re only going to find that after you’ve built your website.
The inspiration will come to you because you’ll want to fill that blank canvas with awesome content!
I started blogging just a few short months ago after going on maternity leave and haven’t looked back. I’ve been able to support my family and continue to write about what I know and love!
Starting A Blog the Right Way
- Choose an awesome name for your blog
- Sign up for web hosting
- Install WordPress
- Choose a theme and customize it
- Install Useful Plugins
- Create your About, Disclosures & Contact pages
- Create Awesome Content
- Promote your content
- Apply for ad networks
- Join relevant affiliate networks and programs
First off, if you want to make money with your blog you need to start off with a self-hosted site. It’s possible to start a free blog, but you won’t own your content and you can’t advertise to make money.
That’s right, everything you post on that free site will be owned by the site builder and not you. Go ahead and use Bluehost to own your own content. Even your web address will be prettier. Self-hosted blogs use WordPress.org and you will be able to install it right from your host.
1. Choose an awesome name
Choose a name that suits you and is catchy to remember. You don’t want something already being used. You either want to tell your readers what you’re blogging about or choose something memorable.
I went with Babies&Fur House. I wanted to write about being a mom and pets- because it’s what I do. And everything in between caring for babies and caring for pets.
Bluehost allows you to check for domain availability before you buy it.
Once you’ve picked your perfect name, register it so no one else can take it from you.
2. Sign up with a Webhost
Your host is important to keep you up and running. It helps with your site speed and reliability.
Starting a blog with BlueHost TODAY is a major step to creating a full-time income from blogging. If you’re just starting out and want an awesome price, Bluehost is the way to go. It includes extras that most companies charge for and it’s affordable.
Included with Bluehost:
- Free Domain Name
- 24/7 Support
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- WordPress.org for free
With its affordability you can monetize your blog using affiliate links and ads (we’ll get to these)
When you get to the main page you’ll want to go ahead and click the green button that says get started now.
Next, you’ll select what plan you want. I did a year of the basic to start out. You can cancel at any time and get a refund on the months you haven’t used, but I figured at a year I would know if blogging was for me or not.
Don’t buy the extras that they offer unless you want the Domain Privacy Protection. It’s an extra $0.99 a month. It means that no one can directly find your physical address through your domain.
Bluehost offers FREE SSL certificates for all WordPress sites. This gives your site security and is favored in Google searches.
On the next page you’ll create your domain name or your web address. Plug in the name you created earlier that shows off what your blog is about and is easy to remember.
Fill in all your information so they’ll have on file who owns your new amazing website and decide how long you want to pay for. The longer you go, the cheaper the monthly plan is, but it’s completely up to you.
Now that I know, I wish I had gone for the 60-month plan. Don’t do what I did, go for the full if you can afford it.
As mentioned before, you may want the Domain Privacy Protection.
3. Install WordPress
Now, through Bluehost, we’ll install WordPress.org. Don’t confuse this for WordPress.com. They are not the same. For you to be able to access ad networks and make money through advertising, you need WordPress.ORG.
Pick a theme that inspires you. You can change this later once we get into WordPress- The behind the scenes of your website.
Click Install on the popup and let’s make your blog pretty!
Then we’ll get into WordPress! Click on that WordPress Start Building button in blue.
Business or Personal? Well if you’re just blogging then hit Personal. If you’re planning on selling something or have a physical address you want people to visit, then hit Business.
On this next page, you get to set up your website. I wouldn’t launch it until you have a couple of posts to show.
You’ve done it! Log into WordPress and get started changing what you want. If I come across something I didn’t know I would google it or end up finding it on Pinterest. Good Luck with your adventure!
4. Pick your theme and tailor it
The theme is the style and look of your blog. Each theme has different fonts, layouts, and customizable options. Some are free and included with your hosting package and others cost you.
Free themes have many limitations, especially as far as monetizing your blog. If you can afford it, I recommend purchasing a theme to give you options, but you can always change down the road.
Check out some blogs that you like to read and generally you can find the name of the theme at the very bottom of their site.
5. Useful plugins
Plugins make your site easier to use for guests and easier to add content for you.
To install plugins, simply scroll down to the plugin button on the left-hand side of the screen and click “add new.” Search for any plugin you wish to add to your blog
Plugins that I recommend:
- Accelerated Mobile Pages– Helps visitors navigate through your site easily
- All-in-One SEO– Helps make content readable and SEO friendly
- Adinserter– Easily choose where to place ads on your site
- Akismet Anti-Spam- Blocks out spam bots and spam comments
6. Create your essential pages
You’ll want to create new pages for each of these in the pages section in WordPress:
- About Me- Introduce yourself and what you want readers to get out of your blog. Give a little bit about yourself in hopes to connect with your readers
- Contact Me- Create a page for readers to get a hold of you if they have questions or want to know more
7. Start writing
Start writing awesome content! You want at least 8 good posts before you launch your site so your readers stay interested.
It’s also a good idea to post frequently and on schedule, so your readers know when to expect new posts (at least once weekly.)
What makes awesome content:
- Solves a problem for readers
- Generally around 1000 words
- Evergreen, meaning people will search year-round and not seasonal
- Use photos to illustrate points
8. Promote, promote, promote
Now it’s time to start getting people to read your posts. Start with social media platforms you are comfortable with so you don’t get overwhelmed.
Different places work for different niches – It will take a while to see what works great for your niche, so use what you’re used to til you find your groove.
Pinterest is the quickest place you’ll gain traffic. You want to pin 10-30 times a day in order to build traffic. Check out Now’s The Time To Boost Your Traffic on an automated system to build your traffic.
9. Apply for ad networks
In the beginning, your first choice is really only limited to Google Adsense. As soon as you get your blog live, go ahead and apply as it takes a while to set up.
Once you reach 25,000 sessions in a 30 day period you can apply for larger ad networks such as Mediavine.
10. Affiliate networks and groups
This is where the monetizing comes in, affiliate links are good for recommending products to your readers. You’ll get paid a portion of the sale when your reader buys the product.
This is one of the best ways to earn money from your blog, even if you don’t have a lot of readers. Just about every company has an affiliate program. You can either look at the bottom of their website or just google the company “affiliate program” and it will either take you there or through a company that takes care of it.
The key to a successful, profitable blog is to constantly learn and try new things. Blogging and everything that goes with it is constantly changing. The best thing you can do is to adapt to changes quickly and give your readers what they’re looking for.
Have fun with it!
Ready to start your blog and make extra income? Or even make a full-time income blogging from home? Sign up for my 5-day course where we’ll cover everything you need to be on the right track to a profitable blog.
In this FREE email course, we’ll cover what you need to do to start a blog, what to use to make money, and how to grow that money into a full-time income.
What are you waiting for? You don’t need to write a blog about blogging for money, any niche will work. I’ll even cover what I did wrong, so you’ll learn from my mistakes.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure for more info. Thank you.