HOW TO START A BLOG YOU CAN MAKE MONEY FROM

 
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The Ultimate Guide To Starting A Blog You Can Make Money From In 2019 – Blogging For Beginners. Are you thinking about starting a blog? Do you want to turn your hobby into a business? This step-by-step guide will help you along every step of the way.

Congratulations on taking the leap and making the decision to start your own blog! I know it all seems a bit intimidating, but it’s much easier than you may think; believe me.

When I first started my blog almost two years ago, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I started it as a creative outlet and less than two months in, I had started making money from it (I didn’t even know that was possible). Within a few months, it became my part-time job during my third year of university. My blog has brought me so many amazing opportunities, allowed me to make life-long friends and do something I absolutely love as a job!

Whether you want to start a blog as a creative outlet, or if you intend to use it to make money, my step-by-step guide will provide you with all you need to know to get your blog up and running.

 Here’s what we’ll cover:

  1. Finding a niche

  2. Web hosting

  3. Domain name

  4. Branding & web design

  5. Social Media

  6. Photography

WHAT’S YOUR NICHE?

First thing’s first: identify your niche. What do you want to blog about? What are you passionate about? Who do you want your audience to be? Your niche is the very core of your blog and it’s what people will associate with you.

Some of the most popular niche’s include fashion, travel, beauty, and food. However, these niche’s are extremely broad and it’s going to be a lot harder if you choose one of these. 

My advice is to be specific with your niche. For example, if you want to be a ‘fashion blogger’, what kind of fashion are we talking? Classy? Preppy? Minimalist? Are you going to be blogging from a petite, tall or plus-sized perspective? Think about it. Instead of being lumped into the 500,000 fashion bloggers, you now become a blogger specialising in ‘preppy fashion for plus-sized women’ thus making your blog more discoverable.

DECIDE ON YOUR WEBHOST

I know what you’re thinking; we’re only onto the second step and it’s already getting technical! Well, stop worrying because it’s really not as complicated as it sounds! Let’s start with what web hosting is:

I’m not going to bore you with technical stuff, so long story short: in order to create a website, you need a place to store it. Basically, web hosting is like hiring a storage unit.

Many newbie bloggers choose to start their blog on free platforms, such as Blogger or WordPress. They do this for the simple reason being: it’s free. However, these platforms are extremely limited and not practical at all if you’re serious about blogging.

I have done a lot of research into web hosting and tried many different platforms. My ultimate decision has left me torn between WordPress.org and Squarespace

I’ll be releasing a blog post about the pros and cons to different website platforms soon, so watch this space.

What are the benefits of hosting with Bluehost?*

If you decide to use Wordpress over Squarespace, you’re going to need to choose a web host. When I used Wordpress, I used Bluest. Here’s why:

  • They are the fastest, most reliable host.

  • It’s affordable with pricing plans starting at just £3.13 per month

  • You get a FREE DOMAIN for your first year

  • They include a free SSL certificate

  • They offer a free, one-click WordPress install

  • 24/7 support is available

  • They offer a 30 day money back guarantee. If, within 30 days, you decide that this isn’t for you, you can cancel at no extra cost and get your money back. What have you got to lose?

START YOUR BLOG WITH BLUEHOST NOW*

PICK A DOMAIN NAME

Your domain name is EVERYTHING. It’s the first thing people are going to see and they will judge your website based on it, so choose carefully! 

Now, let’s head back and talk about niche’s for a second. What did you decide on? Try to incorporate that into your domain name. Make it something simple but catchy so that it stands out and people can remember it easily.

DESIGN YOUR WEBSITE

Your blog theme is possibly a little more important, if not on par with your domain name.Your theme will either make it or break it when it comes to potential readers, subscribers and clients. Branding is everything.

If your website is a bit messy, inconsistent or difficult to navigate, chances are you will lose people who may have become loyal readers, followers or even clients. 

For a professional looking website, you’re going to have to spend a bit of money (unless you’re using Squarespace, in which case templates are built in). Yes, there are free ones out there (WordPress includes many free themes you can use on your website) but they are often tacky and don’t have the customisation options you can have with a more expensive one.

If you’re using Wordpress, I would recommend Bluchic.* I have used their themes in the past and loved using their Maggie* theme.

why should you use BLUCHic themes for wordpress?

  • They’re professional, SEO friendly and feature responsive.

  • They provide detailed, easy-to-follow tutorials to set up your theme.

  • They offer unlimited support and theme updates, free of cost.

  • Their themes are pretty and feminine, specifically designed for female bloggers and entrepreneurs.

  • They also offer an installation service. At a small, extra fee, they will set your website up for you within 24 hours.

Not only do Bluchic offer gorgeous WordPress themes, they also offer landing page templatesCanva social media templates, a FREE email course on building a powerful online presence and so much more!*

UTILISE SOCIAL MEDIA

Honestly, social media is soooo important when it comes to growing your blog, generating traffic and connecting with your audience. I didn’t realise this when I first started, and it took me a year to start using social media effectively, but I honestly wish I’d started using it straight away. 

Let’s talk briefly about what each social media platform can help you with:

INSTAGRAM

Instagram is perfect for connecting with your audience (especially through the stories feature) on a more personal level. It’s also a great way to expand your audience and connect with other bloggers. If used correctly, Instagram can be a great source of income.

I only started my Instagram nine months ago and since then, I’ve gained 10,000 followers, had some incredible opportunities, worked with some amazing brands (such as UGG, Primark and Missguided) and made Instagram my part-time job, hoping to go full-time soon. Just this month alone, I’ve made over £1,000!

TWITTER

Twitter is also a great way to connect with your audience and share your blog posts. There are many accounts, such as this one, that will retweet any tweets you tag them in and host daily threads to increase your blog views and comments.

You probably won’t get loads of traffic through Twitter but, like I said, it’s a great way to connect on a more personal level and get to know your audience (try running polls to see what type of blog post they want from you next).

PINTEREST

This is the big one! If used correctly, Pinterest can become your number one source of traffic for your blog!

Creating eye-catching pins for your blog posts, scheduling your pins and contributing to group boards can take you a long way. 

PHOTOGRAPHY

Last but not least, we’re going to cover photography. Good blog photography is vital when it comes to your blogs success. Much like your theme and domain name, people are going to turn away if they see bad quality, not very well thought out pictures on your website (this also applies to Instagram).

If you’re going to be posting pictures of yourself or flatlays, make sure you’re taking high-quality, well-lit pictures. I would advise investing in a decent camera, I use the Canon G7X. It’s small enough to carry around, the quality is 10x better than iPhone pictures and they’re so much easier to edit!

When editing pictures, try to stick with a preset. You can create your own in Lightroom or use a pre-made one in apps such as VSCO Cam.

If you’re not too skilled in flatlays or don’t have time, there are plenty of websites that you can download stock photos from. My favourite is Pexels

TO RECAP:

  1. Choose your niche

  2. Decide on your web host*

  3. Pick a domain name

  4. Design your website*

  5. Promote yourself on social media

  6. Figure out your photography

Anyone can start a blog, but it requires a lot of time, patience and motivation to start making money from it. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at careergirlsociety@outlook.com or DM me on Instagram.