Blogging is a very lucrative career. You can earn for writing about something which you are interested in, that too from the comfort of your Home
However getting started with your first blog can be the toughest thing. Most people are confused about what topic they should write about, How to Create a blog, How to customize it, The costs involved in setting up a blog etc.
This guide will be really helpful for you to get started with your blog from point zero. It’s a perfect guide for a total novice aspiring blogger to understand the concept of blogging.
STEPS TO CREATE FREE BLOG
STEP 1: WHY BLOGGING?
Ask yourself, Why Blogging? Is it just the money factor, or you love writing too? If it’s just money, then better utilize time with something else, because more than 80% people who do blogging only for money will actually never make money with it. The Reason is simple. When your blog is new, with only a few posts, you will not have enough visitors to your Blog to monetize from it. And if you’re not passionate about writing, you will get frustrated and will quit Blogging sooner or later.
STEP 2: TOPIC SELECTION
To start a blog, you need to know what are you going to Write about. You could cover any topic from Fitness to Technology to Jokes. However, your topic should be appealing to the masses and yet with a unique content that keeps your reader engaged.
Confused with the random topics coming to your mind? Check out the step by step Instructions for Selecting a Perfect Topic For Your Blog
STEP 3: SELECTING BLOGGING PLATFORM
There are many CMS platforms available to host your Blog like Blogger, WordPress.com, Self-hosted WordPress.org, Joomla Drupal, Tumblr, medium etc. Out of these, Blogger, WordPress.org, and WordPress.com are the most common platforms used by bloggers.
However, if you’re looking to earn from your Blog, WordPress.com too is not an option for you as it does not allow you to Post Advertisements, which is the primary source of Income for most Bloggers. WordPress.com is just for casual bloggers. So henceforth whenever I say WordPress, I would be referring to WordPress.org only.
So now the question arises, WordPress Or Blogger-Which is better? That’s a tricky question. I would say it depends on what’s “More Important” for you. Both the Platforms have their own Pros and Cons. Choose the one which offers you the features which are more important for you. I ha
Find it out yourself, WordPress or Blogger, what is perfect for you.
STEP 4: SELECTING A DOMAIN NAME
Once you have decided the blogging platform, the next step would be to choose a Domain Name for your blog.
If you’re using Blogger as your platform, you have the option of either using Blogger’s subdomain which would be in the format ‘yourblog.blogspot.com’ or choosing a custom domain with format ‘www.yourblog.com’.
However, I will strongly recommend you to buy a custom domain as they are available for very cheap. Also, if in future, you plan to transfer your Blog from Blogger to WordPress, with a custom domain, you can easily transfer it without losing traffic and search engine rankings.
For starting a blog with WordPress, it necessary for you to Purchase domain name as WordPress does not offer any Sub-domain.
Selection of right domain name is very Important. You must select a domain name which best describes your Blog content. Keywords in the domain name can greatly improve your search engine ranking.
Generally, domain names with .com extension are preferred. However, if your Blog targets a specific country, local domains may be selected. Often people buy multiple domain names with various extensions like .com, .in, .net etc. to make sure no one else takes benefit of your Brand.
You can Buy a Domain Name from GoDaddy for just $1. If you pay in Local currency the price will be slightly different. In India Rupees, it is Rs 99. An addition ICANN fees of $0.18 or Rs. 12 will be applicable. Please note, even though Godaddy has been running this offer for a long time, they may, however, change Discount codes.
So in case you are unable to get this offer, you can Contact me and I will update a working link.
STEP 5: SELECTING A HOST
If you are going to use blogger, you can skip this step as Blogger is hosted on Google Servers and so does not require you to purchase a hosting.
For WordPress users, there are various Hosting companies available. Some of them offer very cheap hosting. However, you must make sure to host your blog with a good and reputed company. Cheap hosts can lead frequent downtime, which may not go well with your Readers. Also, cheap hosts often compromise with security features, making your blog more vulnerable to hacking.
Bluehost is the most reliable hosting company and has been recommended by many Professional Bloggers. It is also officially recommended by WordPress. However, if you are looking for a cheaper option you may consider GoDaddy. You can check the deals section for latest Hosting offers.
STEP 6: SETTING UP YOUR BLOG
Setting up a Blog with blogger is really simple. Since Blogger is Google’s baby, if you have a Gmail or any Google account, it’s as good as having a Blogger account.
For more information on setting up a Blog at Blogger, you can check my article How To Set Up A Free Blog
For Setting up WordPress Blog, you can refer my article on Starting WordPress Blog from scratch. You may skip first 2 points about selecting domain name and host as we have already discussed the same here.
STEP 7: CHOOSE THE RIGHT CONTENT
It is very important that you write a good and original article. If you just copy/paste articles from other blogs, you may not be able to draw visitors as Google Search Engine has an algorithm that ignores duplicate content.
You can always take inspiration from other for some fill-up articles. However, you must have atleast few articles which are very unique and which are good enough to make your visitors come back to blog.
STEP 8: START BLOGGING
Now that your Blog and content both are ready, you can start writing your first blog. Though not a Thumb’s rule, but ideally your first article should be Introduction about your Blog so that people have an idea what they are going to see inside. You can either make it as your static Home page or if you’re using WordPress, you can even mark it as a sticky post so that it remains on the Top
Your next post should cover a broader topic about your niche and then you can write more specific posts by linking it with the main post. Since my blog is about ways to earn money online and blogging, I chose to write about Top 6 Online Jobs in Online Jobs section and Future Of Blogging in Blogging Section. I then wrote posts to describe each of these 6 Jobs and linked them back to the main post.
STEP 9: UPDATE, MORE UPDATE, AND UPDATE REGULARLY
It is very important to keep updating your blog regularly. If you do not update your Blog, You cannot make people visit your Blog again. No one would like to read the same old content every time they visit a website. Also, a regularly updated blog is more likely to rank higher at Search engines and so more likely to get more traffic
STEP 10: GENERATING MORE TRAFFIC
To earn a decent income with your blog, you need traffic to your Blog. However, for a new Blog, it is very difficult to get traffic as you may not get Organic traffic from Google. The best way to draw more visitors to your Blog is through Social Media Marketing. Start posting links to your Blog on Social Media Websites like Facebook and Twitter.
Get traffic from Question and Answers Websites like Reddit and Quora. I have written a detailed guide on How To Use Quora To Draw Traffic To Your New Blog
You can also leave useful comments on other blogs in your niche. This may not get you much traffic but will get your backlinks and also help you develop good relations with fellow bloggers. If you have good relations with fellow bloggers, you may request them to write a guest post at their blog. You can squeeze in a couple of links to your blog in the guest article to get more traffic.
STEP 11: MONETIZING FROM YOUR BLOG
The final step is to earn money with your Blog. For most Bloggers, a vast majority of revenue is generated through Advertisements. Broadly speaking, there are 3 ways you can earn money from advertisements
1. Pay per Impression(PPI): You display an add-on your web page, when someone visits your web page it is counted as 1 Impression and your account is credited for the same
2) Pay Per Click(PPC): This is the most common form of advertisement. Here you display advertisements on your web page. If a visitor comes to your page and clicks on the advertisement, you get paid for it
3) Pay Per Sale (PPS): As the name suggests, in this method, you will display an advertisement on your web page. If the visitor clicks on it and buys something, you get paid for the same. This method is also referred to as Affiliate Marketing.
For PPI and PPC, Google Adsense is the first option of most bloggers. Google usually pays you 60% of total ad revenues it generates. However, Google may approve or disapprove your registration request for Adsense based on some undisclosed Criteria.
It is generally recommended to write atleast 20-25 posts and get atleast 100 Visitors per day before applying for Google Adsense. Though these numbers are just an indication, as no one really knows the exact number of Visitors and blog pages Google is looking for.
Blogging is certainly a great way of Making Money Online and holds a great future too. But as I said earlier, it is only worth if you love writing and expressing your views.
To be a successful Blogger, you must atleast know Basics of SEO to make sure you get traffic from Search Engines. You must also make sure to Follow these On Page SEO Tips while writing articles as it will help you optimize your article for Search Engines.
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