What are the things required to start a blog and earn money, Should you start a blog or not, What you need to do to survive in the blogging community.
For almost all of you, the idea of blogging would be seeded in your mind because of fame, an expression of your thoughts or money. For many others it may be an option to promote their business or already existing website. Surely, for all above options, blogging is a good choice. Blogging is inexpensive as it is free and can be started within few minutes. Moreover you don’t need to hire an expert to set up a new blog for you. Before moving further, I would recommend you to read the following posts:
It was 6 months back when I started blogging. Unfortunately I committed many mistakes too and wasted a great amount of time initially in searching things around. In case you are planning about starting a blog, here are the few tips on how to start blogging that may be useful for you:
1. Choose Your Niche Wisely
The first foremost thing is to ask yourself what you are good at? Choose something that you are most passionate about. Try ideas and content that bring juices in your head and goes viral with your blood. It could be anything that you love. It could be politics, sports, celebrities, cars-bikes, fashion, technology, food recipes or maybe all of them. If you run a business, then a business blog is a great way to connect with customers and provide them with the latest information about your products or new services. Decide your topics and have a clear purpose on your mind.
2. Choose Your Blogging Platform Carefully
After deciding what you want to write, next thing is – where to start a blog? You need a platform where you could write. As of December 2013, the 2 most famous blog creating platforms are WordPress and Blogger. Both the platforms provide a free version as well as a premium version. With Blogger your free sub domain will be something like “yourblog.blogspot.com” while with WordPress your free sub domain will be like “yourblog.wordPress.com“.
My choice is obvious to go with WordPress as it is the best place to start a blog and almost more than 40% of current websites and blogs uses WordPress. Moreover, there is immense free guides and tutorials available for WordPress users that any other blogging platform can ever provide. Even in this post, I will be talking about all below things with WordPress in consideration. You can check recommended WordPress resources for beginners for more information on WordPress. I do offer free WordPress installation for my readers in case you need my help with your new WordPress Blog.
3. Domain name and Hosting
You can use a free sub domain and host platform from blogger or WordPress but if you want to be a successful blogger, then go with your own custom domain name and host. A custom domain name would be like www.yourblogname.com and the registration is easily available between $10-$15 per year from different registrars. With a domain name, you also need to buy hosting to host your blog platform which starts from $20 per year. Choose your domain registrar and hosting provider carefully demanding the facts that they do provide 24-7 customer support, good server speeds, space and bandwidths. For more information on choosing domain names, read:
4. Blog Design Matters
Its not just about starting a blog. It is also very important to make sure that your blog looks cool and trendy yet simple and user friendly too. There are many professional WordPress themes available both free and premium. You can download and use a free theme from the WordPress Theme Directory or buy a premium theme from Themeforest or Templatic. Make sure to use the theme which is related to your content or business. Hiring a professional designing company is also a great choice.
5. Content Is The Key
Always remember – Content is the King. The most important reason for success of all the successful blogs today is their content. Good content will not only be appreciated by readers but also by search engines. The primary concern for any new blog should always be content at least for first 6 months. Other things should be considered as secondary. It is also very important to make sure you don’t copy content from other’s blogs otherwise you will be penalized by Google and your blog will never be able to achieve good rankings. Always make sure to check plagiarism in your articles before publishing any post. Every unique post will help you in increasing your Google Pagerank while every copied post will decrease it.
6. Follow A Schedule & Pattern
Another important consideration with any new blog is to follow a regular writing schedule while publishing your content. Try to create an editorial calender and pre deciding your dates for publishing. Following a regularity will not only develop regular visitors and readers but also be helpful for search engines to read your new content faster. Although it is not compulsory but generating 2, 3 or even 4 posts as per your convenience will be a good choice. If you are not planning to write regularly, you could also accept guest postings on your blog. This will help you in achieving more audience.
7. Interact, Engage and Promote Your Blog
Promoting the blog on social media is really important these days as social platforms can drive a huge amount of traffic to your blog and if your content is viral, you could become a superstar in just few days. Use all social platforms that you hold presence onto. Although Facebook and Twitter are 2 major social platforms but promoting your blog on other platforms like Stumbleupon, Pinterest, Linkedin can really prove beneficiary.
Try to interact with your audience on social media platforms and even directly on your blog. Try asking them what they like about, what they don’t, and what they want to see in future posts. Use RSS buttons, social sharing buttons, subscribe options. If someone has subscribed you, send them a warm reply. This will not only make them your regular audience but they will never hesitate in promoting your content among their circles. Not only with your audience but also do interact with fellow bloggers. Never consider them as your competitors. Consider them as your blogging buddies, guides and networking partners.
8. SEO Is Must
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the process of promoting your website in search engines. Visitors should be able to reach your website by typing a query in search engines and this is what SEO does. It increases the search visibility of your website. It’s nothing to be afraid about. Believe me it’s easy and generates good results, traffic if done regularly, wisely and slowly. With wisely and slowly, I mean- No Black Hat Techinques. For more information on SEO and search traffic, read:
9. A Few Other Things You Should Know
a). Technical Know How: It could be really helpful for you if you could learn at least some basics of HTML and PHP languages. Technical issues can arise anytime and with anyone. You could be the savior of yourself if you have the advantage of technical knowledge.
b). Time, Patience and Sacrifice: Always remember, blogging is not a one day task. It is the logs of your regular activities and demand your time, patience and sacrifice. And time not less than 6 months minimum to create some demand of yours.
10. A Few Best Blogging Sites
These are a few best blog sites which started as a one man show but later evolved into a big platform and eventually generating several thousands in revenue. Do remember, they took time there to reach where they stand today. I am sure these will great help for you on your new blog.
Ask Again – Should I Start Blogging?
I hope that this post would be helpful for you with starting a blog. Even if you need any further assistance, I would be happier than you to help you out. Have fun and I hope you have some clear idea on how to start blogging.