THE ULTIMATE GUIDE  - How To Start A Blog
In this all-new guide you’ll learn:
How to create content
Find the proper host
Set up WordPress
and finally –
How to promote your blog and make money
So if you want to get your blog on the top of Search Engines this year, you’ll love today’s guide.
Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
1. The Ultimate Question - Why Start A Blog?
I know that you have already decided to start a blog, or you wouldn’t be reading this guidebook.
But, if you still have some doubts or unclear reasons about why to start, let me tell you why you will love it!
You might ask – Why should I create a blog since there are so many of them already?
Well, the answer is simple-share your knowledge with the world! When you are passionate about something, and you write with the same passion about it, readers will love it!
Readers will respond to it!
Your blog will influence people and help them find answers!
So, start an attractive blog, write sharp content and shine among the others!
You can start blogging for personal, professional, and financial reasons. You can start blogging as a hobby.
But, let’s dive deeper.
– Hello world!
Start writing a blog to reach thousands of people.
Do you have a good story? If you write it from your unique angle people will love it. You can attract people and even make new friends or valuable contacts.
Share your story with them, or even give them some awesome advice they never heard before. They will truly appreciate that.
Whether you are writing about pet grooming, fashion, or motherhood people always respond to fresh and sensational ideas.
Once you start receiving feedback like “thank you for sharing such useful advice, it was really helpful” you will feel really wonderful.
It will help you boost your inner motivation to keep writing and coming up with innovative but helpful ideas.
Be your own boss!
This is awesome because you don’t have to depend on anybody but yourself. You can choose the time and place, and write whenever inspiration hits you.
In more technical terms, owning a blog enables you to control your account, content, reputation, brand, and most importantly – you control your creativity and design your blog any way you like.
Also, you will enjoy learning new things, exploring your niche even further, perfecting your blog to the fullest.
– Busy, busy business!
Do you own a business? Blogs can be a super cool way to grow it, gather potential clients, increase traffic and visitors.
How can a blog help you here?
Well, the answer is easy- your potential clients can read fabulous content that describes your business’s success, your awesome new ideas, powerful strategies, and products. Your high-quality blog posts can turn them into paying customers.
You can establish yourself as an authority in your niche, and enhance your business image.
You will agree with me that this is a huge opportunity for you as a businessman!
Few statistics to prove I’m right:
- 80% of companies who actively blog every day, have gathered more than one customer through their blog.
- 65% of the online consumers believe the information they get from blogs to be true.
- 60% of online consumers have bought the products because it was recommended on the blog.
Another plus for business blogs – some relevant clients can choose YOU as an expert to share your knowledge on conventions and press releases. What a cool way to gain new experience!
If you have a valuable professional blog, opportunities are endless.
Remember – business blogs are like the internet business cards.
3. Let’s talk money!
If you start a blog and attract a huge number of readers, you can consider monetizing it. Earning money from your blog can be an awesome way of generating a second profit.
Or you can even turn it into your main source of income. You must agree with me that this would be mind-blowing!
Writing about something you are passionate about plus earning money – you nailed it!
Some ways of monetizing your blog are:
Affiliate marketing – This way of monetizing your blog is pretty easy, just refer traffic to other websites and you will earn a commission on generated sales.
Choose the right offers and write the content that will inspire the user to take action.
In reality, this can be seen on sites that offer reviews, coupons, testimonials, and places to buy products. In fact, when people look at these sites they are thinking about only one call to action – buying!
Google Adsense – It’s a super-effective way to make money from your blog. Just pay attention to a few specific details.
First, as the site owner, you need to join their program and put a line of code on their site.
Next, AdSense matches ads to your site based on your content and visitors. These ads are made and paid for by advertisers who want to promote their products.
After that, all you need to do is use Google Adsense properly- you need to blend Adsense ads into your content but with a twist – they can’t look like ads.
So how do you do it?
Simply don’t place banner ads on the top of your page or on the sides, but instead put their ads within your content. Do it naturally so that they don’t stick out and annoy your readers. That’s how you will grab the attention of the readers.
Bottomline – whenever a reader clicks on the ad on your blog you hear – K-Ching! You get money in your pocket – Google ad targeting is working!
Here is an example of AdSense earnings:
Start your blog, share your stories, ideas, opinions with a huge number of readers!
Start a blog and join numerous bloggers around the world, write about your passion, and even earn money.
Now, that you figured out why starting a blog is so intoxicating, let’s continue talking about the crucial thing-
2. How To Choose A Captivating Niche?
How to choose a captivating Niche?
The first thing before starting a blog is choosing a niche.
Of course, you will choose a topic that you are most passionate about, but also that you possess a lot of knowledge of.
But, what’s the catch?
You don’t know which topic to choose. Your niche or a topic you want to write about is too broad, or too narrow. You want to start a blog about your business and make it profitable.
But, guess what? In this chapter, I will show you how to pick a stunning niche.
#1 Which topics spark your imagination?
It’s time to do some brainstorming!
Take a second and think about what is my passion?
Is it cooking, is it fashion, is it home design? What is the topic that never wears out, always inspires you, makes you want to talk about it for days?
If you were able to answer the questions, then that is a pretty good signal that you have landed on your niche. That is something you should be writing about in your blog.
Writing a blog is actually a long dialog or discussion with your readers that can last for months or years.
# Be ruthless and cut your topic into 3-5 subtopics – it will do you good!
When you start your blog, of course, you will want to talk about every aspect of the topic you are passionate about. You will write about 10 or even more subtopics that are related to your niche.
This is something you will want to steer clear of.
Well, let’s discuss this.
Say you want to start a blog about pets.
You are REALLY passionate about animals.
Your brainstorming mind map would look like this:
And now you want to start writing about it. First, you cover snakes, then fish, then other pets, then you jump to health, grooming, teaching a parrot how to talk, which dog is best for a family with kids, how to stop your cat from scratching the furniture, and get – a mish-mash!
What’s the solution – tone it down a bit!
Choose a few subtopics about the same animal (for example dogs) and dominate.
Gradually you will realize that you really enjoy writing about only a few subtopics and others are not so enjoyable or inspirational.
More importantly, you will notice that readers really love subtopics that you enjoy writing about. They respond to the content that you wrote with passion.
And also you will realize that readers are perhaps not really excited about the rest of the subtopics.
Maybe they will not be so interested in dogs’ illnesses, but they will love your posts about dog grooming.
And there you have it.
That is a good sign to choose to write about subtopics that are interesting both to you and your readers.
Writing a blog is an amazing job, but be aware of the fact that it changes and evolves once you find your target audience and establish what you are good at.
#3 Check out if your topic will never get old
You might want to write content based on trends or have an evergreen niche.
This means that your brand and blog will stay relevant and engaging.
Basically evergreen means that people constantly look for information about the products from a certain niche.
Your job here would be to always introduce some fresh information or some cool new ideas about different problem solutions.
If you choose an evergreen niche people all around the world will try to help themselves with your information.
Another plus for evergreen niches – they have the potential for long-term profit.
Some relevant evergreen niches in 2021 are:
(and a lot more)
#3 Became a titan in blogging about your business!
If you are an ambitious businessman you can create a blog to promote your products or services.
In a business blog, you will write content that will explain your niche in detail and attract potential customers.
Become an authority in your field and contribute to the world of business with your blog. Use your blog as content marketing and enter the world of thought leadership!
Now you might ask
Well, how does one become a thought leader?
Let’s start by saying that this process is not something that happens in the blink of an eye. Becoming an authority in your field is built over a longer period of time. But once you manage to cement your credibility nothing can stop you to establish a thought leader status.
Here are some rock-solid tips on becoming a thought leader with your blog
Definition is everything!
Develop one niche market or subarea of your expertise.
By choosing a specific area in your field of expertise, you will establish your brand and integrity more easily than if you try to be a thought leader in all areas connected to your industry.
Concentrate on the areas you know a lot about and stick to them.
Research, research, and oh yeah – research again!
Becoming a thought leader means that you should be aware of the changes and growth in your industry.
By following the trends you will continue to be the top authority in your field with your insights and comments.
Never stop learning about the market, and always strive to think ahead of others when trying to solve problems or giving advice in your niche.
Pick the brains of other thought leaders bloggers!
As said in the previous paragraph, thought leaders never stop learning.
Reading blogs from others who are in the same field of industry as you are is a great way to connect and develop your wisdom even more.
Listen to others and ensure your authority in your field of expertise.
#4 How do I choose a monetizing niche?
Writing about a topic that you enjoy but also make a dazzling profit from sounds mindblowing.
But, sorry to break it to you – making a profit from writing a blog doesn’t happen overnight. You need to invest time and effort to find a niche that will make you rich.
What will be the result of all your hard work- read the following tips to find out
Research your niche on the internet.
Type your idea in Google and see how much it is popular. It’s that simple.
For example, you could type:
This will help you realize how easy people will find you. The more popular the idea is, the more potential customers it attracts!
Visit the site Google trends
This is by far the best search tool! Here you can actually see the biggest shifts and changes in consumer behavior – you can find a profitable niche according to these trends!
You can see if the trend is rising or declining. You can research demographic insights, related topics, and related queries.
You can check the search insight in for example last 7 days for let’s say packing hacks.
You realize that the highest peak of the search was on February 13, but generally, this topic has solid search popularity.
You can even compare two different topics to see which one is more popular.
On the same day, you see that packing hacks were more popular than leather suitcases.
Much, much more popular!
Pro Tip: This kind of comparison can help you beat your competition! Super cool for your niche!
It also enables you to research the trends in a specific region or country.
You see that packing hacks were the most popular search topic in Australia.
One more trick – to be sure whether your niche will be popular you can go back in the past and see the trends in the last year or last 5 years for example.
For example, say you want to check the trends for women’s fashion.
Okay, when you inspect the graph you see that there are some dips. But, on the whole, the search volume for this niche is quite solid. It’s normal to have slight increases or decreases because they only show seasonal trends (high search from January to March, a slight decrease from March to April) of the searches.
So, try this phenomenal search tool that will definitely help you choose a trendy but more importantly profitable niche!
Research affiliate marketing sites.
When you mention affiliate marketing, people usually say that it is effortless, passive income.
You can easily imagine yourself sitting comfortably on your sofa and watching your affiliate income goes as high as a skyscraper.
Who wouldn’t like to do that?
You just need to find sites with the products connected to your niche, mention a few products and you’re golden.
Well, sorry to burst your bubble but it’s not that simple.
A lot of marketing programs don’t bring enough profit for you to relax.
This doesn’t mean you should be discouraged – just read the following rock-solid tips and hit the jackpot.
Go to a website called Quantcast. Here you can find out about the top 100 websites on the Internet. My advice is to scroll to the second or third page and check the niches and trends you see there.
For instance, you notice that clothing is pretty popular. However, that’s still too broad.
Next, you go to a website called Quora. Here you can ask almost any question and get a thorough answer since this is a forum. Here you simply type the term in the search bar and get a list of topics that are trending.
This way you will manage to narrow the topic of clothing into for example traveling clothes hacks and develop a smaller niche in that industry.
Now you might want to see if you can monetize your niche.
You don’t want to spin in a circle and earn no money
Go to a website called ClickBank affiliate retailer, with a huge number of users.
First, you can check the affiliate marketplace and start searching for your category. Secondly, you select your category and check the results.
Say you definitely want to promote products like leather suitcases, because this is closely related to your niche – packing hacks. The results might be displayed like this:
Each result will show you which products you can sell in your niche, and how well the affiliate product sells for a selected niche.
Check out the gravity (in the purple square) – the number of different affiliates who earned a commission by promoting this product in the 12 weeks period.
This is the best trick to grab your possible affiliate-marketing niches and check for services and products that people spend money on.
Check your niche on AdWords
You might want to be sure that after you find an affiliate niche, not to forget checking how much it costs per click (CPC) of keywords in that niche.
Say, your niche is traveling and sub-niche packing hacks. The results of these keyword ideas would be displayed like this:
You will be concentrating on sales and driving traffic so you need to check the competition.
In other words, you will figure out who is bidding, how you can compete, and how much clicks costs.
You will discover:
average monthly searches- how much traffic the niche keyword drive.
suggested bids – if a keyword niche is worth your time
competition – how difficult it will be to rank for them.
When you click on the “Suggested bid” column you sort your results by bid amount and find out which niche searches have marketers who want to pay a lot of money for just one click.
When you examine the results which niche is popular and can generate a significant income.
Check out The Amazon Affiliate Program
This could be the easiest way to monetize your blog since you are a beginner. Here you can find thousands of products you can review and recommend.
So, how will you make money with Amazon?
First, I must tell you that joining this program is free to join. So you open an account, find a product you want to recommend, and create a special affiliate link through a Stripe tool on Amazon Browser. Then you add that link to your blog post.
When a user clicks your affiliate link (tracking code), a cookie is put on their computer. So, when a user buys a product, Amazon attributes the purchase to you, because you referred them. After the purchase, you get a commission and put the money in your pocket!
So you recommend a kitchen utensil on your blog, and a reader buys it – K – chink!
Check out the social media.
Social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram can help you see how popular content, connected to your niche is or is it followed and used by a lot of people.
This way you will see if your niche has a huge audience or not.
Know your audience
You surely understand how important this is. Decide exactly who is your target audience because of the following reasons:
You will choose the tone of voice more easily
You will decide on your marketing tactics
You will choose the appropriate platforms to promote your brand
You will know what content to create and which images to use
You get the picture right?
KILLER TIP: consider your target audience’s gender, lifestyle, age, culture, and so on.
Always keep in mind who you are targeting.
After finishing the research, you will conclude which niche will bring you the most profit. Also, you will see who is the target audience for your niche, what kind of products you could offer, and which social media to use in order to set up your online presence.
You have found your profitable niche.
Right. Niche – covered. What’s next?
Scroll down to find out.
3. How To Create A Domain That Will Be A Knockout?
If you want to turn your niche into a blog you need to choose a domain or the name of your website (URL).
The question is:
How do you choose a domain that readers stick to?
Read this chapter to find out about this and a lot more on this topic.
What the heck is the URL?
What does this mysterious word mean?
I asked myself this question tons of time before I actually found out.
I know I know who could care less about the meaning of URL, but you will be surprised.
So, let me enlighten you.
A domain or URL (uniform resource locator) is a name that people will type into their browser when they try to find your blog.
See- I told you it was important!
https://myblog.com is a web address typed in the browser.
Let’s dive deeper.
Something that you most likely overlook is the first part of this address. You are definitely used to seeing https:// but I am sure that you haven’t thought about what it represents. However, this is an important part of a so-called URL protocol.
The protocol enables your URL to work. With the protocol, your browser knows how to work with the website’s server and how to send and receive information.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure or https, is a protocol that enables security because it encrypts the information exchanged between the server and the browser. This is represented with a padlock which you see in front of the URL.
Now we are getting to an awesome but risky part – choosing the domain name
This is the most important part when starting a blog. It defines your website and transfers essential information to search engine bots and readers.
It definitely pays off to invest more time in coming up with your domain name and making it as powerful as possible.
Here are some legit methods you can follow when picking a domain name:
1. A strong keyword will do the trick
This is inevitably the crucial ingredient when generating a domain name.
Having strong keywords in your domain will help you rank high in search engine results.
Also, keywords help your readers to understand what you are focused on and what your niche is.
Luckily, there are tools like Google Keyword Planner or KWfinder that speed up the process of choosing the right keywords and where you can see which keywords have a high search volume and low competition.
2. Go to a domain name generator and check if your domain name is available
I must mention first that you can always choose a domain name without any tools, but the downside is that it can be time-consuming because you might end up bumping in already taken names.
Visiting a domain name generator can simplify the process of checking the availability of your domain name.
Domain Wheel is a domain name generator that is really simple to use all you have to do is type the keyword in the search box. It looks like this:
Say you want to start a blog about dog grooming. You just type “dog grooming” as your keyword and hit Search Domain.
And you get the best Domain names for dog grooming.
You can view details when you choose which domain works for you.
3. Set up your own criteria when choosing the domain
Use your imagination here, but also common sense. Try answering these questions:
Is my domain name clear and easy to remember? If not, avoid long names and confusing symbols!
Is my domain name catchy? If yes, it will capture readers’ attention and they will stick to your blog.
Of course, the bottom line is the domain name should display your niche – the topic you are writing about.
4. Choose a domain to score!
Generally, when choosing a domain, you can either choose a sub-domain or a top-level domain.
If you want to be your own boss choose a Top-level domain because it gives you the opportunity to actually own the domain after you have bought it from a domain registrar.
At the moment the three most popular Top-level domains are
You should choose “an ending” or a top-level domain for your website address according to its popularity, because it’s easy to remember, and people will trust it more since they are familiar with it.
For this reason, a .com is most widely used because it covers most purposes and intents.
However, feel free to choose another web address extension, in accordance with your brand and your vision of online presence establishing.
If you wish Google to geotarget your website, choose a Top-level domain that goes with your region (for example .co.uk for the United Kingdom or .ru for Russia)
Here are some other facts why Top-level domains are phenomenal:
When you register your domain you get the advantage of the freedom to customize your blog any way you like, control it and also monetize it.
Owning your domain means having a clean URL, without any sub-domains added to it. This way readers will find your blog easily as you will have a higher search rank on Google.
For example, your URL will look like this:
If you want to appear as a professional, owning a domain certainly adds up to that image.
The disadvantage could be that you have to pay to own your domain, which means spending money before your blog starts making money.
Let’s not forget about sub-domains:
Sub-domains are mostly free but the name of the host company you chose is kept, while top-level domains don’t keep the name of the host.
So, your URL will look like this:
Also, with a hosted domain, you have very few opportunities to customize your blog the way you like. You can only use provided templates which can limit your creativity.
So, if you choose to have your domain hosted, meaning having a free domain there are a few things you should consider before doing that.
You won’t be able to generate profit from your blog. If you are writing a blog just for your own pleasure then this is a good option for you.
However, if your ambition is to write a blog that generates profit then you should avoid having a hosted domain.
One other thing- hosting companies can put ads on your website, which will definitely annoy your readers.
But, in the end, sub-domains are free which is their biggest advantage.
And the final step:
5. Register your new domain name
More on this in the next chapter.
4. Choose A Web Host - Get Your Blog Online
Awesome! You are another step closer to start writing your blog! You have chosen your domain name and now you need to register it or in other words –
choose a proper hosting company.
But which one will suit you best?
Let’s answer this question in the following chapter.
The three most important things that the hosting company will provide you are:
- Storage space
Let’s dive deeper into these features.
The domain is your website address and if people want to find it, they type it into the browser.
Your hosting company lets you pick a domain name and informs whether the name is
Available. Once you pick your domain, you can get it for free or purchase it depending
on which hosting plan you have chosen.
The server hosts your website live on the internet. It supports the traffic generating into your website.
The hosting company “hosts” your website on one of their servers, enabling people
access it through the internet.
Storage space serves as an online store where you can put all your text, videos, images,
and other media files with a code. A hosting company provides you with this space. You can have
a limited amount of storage space or unlimited – all depending on the plan you choose.
Still a bit confused?
OK let’s discuss it even further.
What is a hosting provider’s most important job?
It needs to get your website online so that people can find it. You can’t start a blog on the internet
Without a hosting company!
Which hosting plan should you choose?
Let’s talk first about
SHARED hosting. (the best solution for beginners)
Imagine you are living with your roommates in a shared apartment. It’s a cool option
because it’s, of course, cheaper, but sometimes you get tired of not having your own apartment – freedom.
This is how a shared hosting environment looks like.
You share your website with other websites on the same server.
As I said it’s great because it’s a cheaper option especially if you are just starting with your
blog, and still don’t have a lot of visitors.
You don’t need a lot of disk space or BANDWIDTH as the sites with high-traffic do.
So, together with your roommates, you have limited resources, but this option still works for you just fine.
But, as time passes, the situation changes and you definitely want more space.
Then you can choose to move to your own apartment or in terms of hosting, choose a:
VIRTUAL PRIVATE SERVER HOSTING (VPS)
Now we’re talking!
This environment enables your website to live on the same server as other websites but
in a private environment.
You can get the dedicated processing power and disc space that other websites on that server can’t.
Of course, it will cost you more “to live alone” but you get more power and generate
more traffic and user requests.
If you own a developed business and think you will get a lot of traffic
VPS hosting is the best for your website.
And finally the last but the most powerful one! Dedicated hosting is perfect for high-traffic sites, which can use an entire server to give power to website applications. They meet every need for configuration, customization, security and operating systems, etc.
But, full-time dedication isn’t cheap. These hosting plans are the most expensive since they provide top hardware, services, and support.
This is a shared hosting service, ideal if you have websites designed on WordPress. They have a fast load time, updates, security options that are in tune with WordPress.
If you choose WordPress as your hosting company you kill two flies with one rock.
You can buy a domain name here while you are signing for the hosting plan and start your blog right away!
Talk about time efficiency.
Of course, I must mention that you don’t need to get your hosting and a domain name from the same company. If you choose your domain name elsewhere you can transfer and connect it to your website. How you will do it depends on the hosting company’s terms of service. Ask the support team when you decide to do the transfer.
Let’s talk about SECURITY
Here, never ever settle for less. SSL security is an absolute must-have!.
SSL certificate encrypts your website and customer information (such as credit card numbers, emails, address..) so that no hacker can reach it.
As I mentioned before, it puts a padlock on the visitors’ browsers when they land on your website. This way visitors know that your website is secure and they can trust you and your business.
One more plus – if you have an SSL certificate you get ranked higher by Google search engines. Awesome for your SEO!
How to be sure that you’ve hit the jackpot with your hosting provider?
Well, just look for the following things:
- Are Unlimited Plans for real: Investigate whether your hosting provider really provides unlimited free space or there is a hidden catch. Always read their terms carefully.
- Support: Make sure that your hosting provider gives you a hand in critical technical issues you may bump into. They should do it quickly and effectively.
- Training: Choose a hosting provider that will provide you with a huge number of resources to learn how to manage your website like a pro. Don’t overlook this point, because you will end up relying on their support staff for every single thing.
- Reliability: Make sure that your hosting provider is reliable all the time in a way that it doesn’t crash which immediately kills your website. The hosting provider must constantly keep your website live on the internet
- Other services: Read through the terms of your hosting provider to make sure they offer backup of your data, fixing your bugs, updating your software, etc. Trust me, these services will save you time when maintaining your website.
Check out some of the top names in the industry:
This hosting company provides you with one of the fastest load times. Also, it has a 99.98% uptime guarantee (they are super reliable). They offer reasonable prices and have expert customer support.
If you choose the starter plan, you will get free hosting, a domain name, and an SSL certificate. You can use a super-easy drag-and-drop builder tool to design your website attractively and professionally.
This hosting provider will be ideal for you if you have a business website on WordPress or you have a startup company.
This hosting provider gives you a super easy control panel. They have affordable prices and different hosting options. They also have phenomenal infrastructure if you are a WordPress user.
Its cloud service offers a 99.96 % uptime guarantee (they are also super reliable).
In short, their BASIC hosting package is an awesome choice for new bloggers (like yourself), family websites, and students. It gives you everything you need for publishing your first site.
Plus package offers the option of adding more domains and building more sites.
Overall – It is intuitive and user-friendly
This hosting provider also has one of the fastest load times. They have 99.96% uptime (plus for reliability) and awesome support services.
They offer unlimited bandwidth and have reasonable prices.
It enables your site to load super fast. It provides a high level of security and also it updates your site on a regular basis.
Check out their hosting plans
All hosting plans include a free domain for one year and a free SSL license.
One more thing – WordPress is automatically installed, so you don’t have to handle it manually.
There you have it. When you choose your hosting company, you are almost finished with the technical parts of your blog.
Stay with me here as we dive into finalizing part.
5. How To Set Up WordPress Like A Pro?
After you have bought your domain name and chosen your hosting company, the next step is setting up WordPress.
You might ask-isn’t that complicated?!
Only one way to find out-read the following chapter.
I must start by saying that WordPress is one of the most used platforms for creating blogs. It is an absolutely impressive platform with a huge selection of blog building tools.
It has a wide range of purposes that serve small personal blogs or huge business websites for companies.
It can be used by anyone, and it is simple because it doesn’t require design or development knowledge.
First, let’s describe some technical differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org
I am sure you have without a doubt stumbled upon two versions of this platform – WordPress.org and WordPress.com.
Once you read this part you will be able to make the right decision and choose a version that is the most suitable for you, depending on whether you want to create a blog just for pleasure or you are thinking about starting a business blog.
WordPress.org or WordPress.com-which one to choose?
Bear in mind that WordPress fundamentally has the same functions in both versions. It basically functions as a tool for managing content and most blogs around the world are run on this platform.
You might say that I am splitting hair here. But there are some differences between these two options:
This version enables you to download a free software-the blogging platform and install it on your own site.
Since you can have it on your own server, there are a lot of possibilities for you like using plugins and customizing the theme.
Essentially you can control how the theme looks and also have access to advanced features via plug-ins.
So if you are thinking about making money with your blog, this option would be the best for you.
- You need to spend money in order to host your own website.
- You will be required to have more technical knowledge for setting up and running.
- You will have to keep your website fresh and updated but also secured.
This option enables you to have a free blog. It is not necessary to pay for a domain or hosting.
Also, the technical side is done by the platform so you don’t need to pay attention to editing the site. You don’t need to worry about security, upgrading, spam, etc.
You can start writing your blog right away.
There are some limiting options like not being allowed to use plugins or customizing your website, which could be the biggest disadvantage.
You can only use the provided themes.
At its core, this version is easier to use but has limitations in functionality and options.
It all boils down to this:
Choose WordPress.org if you desire to start a professional blog, which you can fully control and make a profit out of it.
On the other side, select WordPress.com if you wish to start a blog for your own pleasure without the ambition of making it profitable.
Now let’s get really technical- How to actually use WordPress?
Let’s start with the step-by-step WordPress.com setting.
First, you type in the Google browser WordPress.com and choose the free option.
Next, you see this box and complete it with the information. In the end, click “Create your account”
The next step is to type the domain name in the browser.
For instance, you want to start a blog about DIYs. WordPress immediately offers you which option to choose, and also it gives you a list of possible names of your website, which you will choose according to your preferences.
After you click ‘select’, WordPress.com will generate your site. You can log into the blog and start with the design. You can choose a theme, add widgets, create posts.
And that’s it.
You have started your blog for free.
Is it maybe time to upgrade my free account?
If this question comes into your mind, then you should probably choose a plan from WordPress.com which suits you the best. Getting more serious with your blog means switching to let’s say the self-hosted version.
Let’s turn to WordPress.org
As I already mentioned with some hosting companies you get WordPress installed automatically.
After you have chosen your domain, you need to set up a hosting account and buy a hosting plan. This is how you do it:
- type your personal information into every field
- choose the package you want.
- settle your payment information
- check the box where you agree with the terms of service
- create a strong password
and voila – you can choose your WordPress theme.
The theme should be within your price range or free, mobile-friendly, user-friendly, and of course have a design that you like.
You get access to the WordPress dashboard or your empty canvas! Here you can control what the users will see when they come to your blog. Here you can choose colors, fonts, and special elements (choose your theme).
Dive into your dashboard functions and start exploring them!
Need short insights into the dashboard?
Here you are:
- Welcome message (in the yellow square) – Here WordPress shows you the way to the essential area of the admin panel.
- Information about what happened on your blog lately (in the green square)
(in the red square)
- Posts- here you write your blog posts.
- Media – this is the media library – images, that you uploaded to your blog.
- Pages – this is for your sub-pages
- Comments – here you can check the comments that your readers left.
- Appearance – this is where you design your blog’s looks (change the theme)
- Plugins- here you install new plugins
- Users -here you manage your users’ account and others who can access your blog.
- Settings – here you can find all you need for setting your blog.
Now you can start thinking about creating your HOMEPAGE.
This is a so-called static page that will always stay on your blog.
Let’s be clear- static pages are not posts, but they still give readers some relevant information about you.
Consider adding these essential details to your homepage:
- A clear headline that presents your blog.
- A few sentences about yourself, to grab visitors’ attention.
- Links to your supreme content.
- Some of your recent posts.
- An email – if you want to build your email list.
And there you have it – your homepage is ready.
Once you set up all the other pages you need- you are ready to start writing your first post.
Hooray! Let’s get creative!
On the left-hand side of the dashboard, you have an option called PLUGINS. Experience the perks of these special features in the next chapter
6. How To Choose And Install WordPress Plugins?
Thumbs up for you if you have chosen to start a blog with WordPress.org because you are able to install thousands of different plugins on your site.
You can choose awesome plugins for eCommerce, photography, newsletters, and others. With the help of plugins, you can run your site efficiently and customize it with different features and functions.
But, what exactly are plugins, and what is their purpose?
Let’s get technical (but only a little)!
They are small parts of software that add special features or perform special functions on your site.
Plugins are written in PHP (hypertext preprocessor), a scripting language that is widely used in web development, and therefore it is also used for WordPress. Using plugins means installing them on your WordPress site.
Is it complicated to install them you might ask?
It is super simple. You don’t need to know the code to install plugins, you just choose which ones you want and that’s it.
How do you install plugins?
Once you start using WordPress, you get access to the WordPress plugin directory where you can find hundreds of plugins and use them.
You go to the Dashboard and click “Add New Plugin”, then you choose the plugin you need and click “Install”.
That’s how simple it is.
Let me give you an example.
Say, you want to open an online store for camping gear. Obviously, once you set up your webpage on WordPress, you now want to upgrade it with let’s say a plugin called Elementor Page Builder.
First, as I mentioned you go to the WordPress plugin directory and click “add new plugin”, while as the keyword you typed Elementor.
It looks something like this:
After you click “Instal Now”, you have this plugin on your WordPress.
Now, you are free to design your website any way you like.
Elementor is just one out of thousands of plugins that you can install. It’s all up to you.
If you have some specific demands for plugins, you can also get them from third-party developers. They are designers who write PHP code for specific plugins. These plugins can be free or you need to buy them and get even more features. If you decide to buy a plugin outside WordPress Directory you can upload them on your WordPress website and install them from your plugins screen, or with File Transfer Protocol (FTP) you can add them manually.
Choose awesome plugins for an awesome kickstart!
Now, you turn to the customization of your site’s functions, performance, and appearance. You come across thousands of plugins that you can add to your WordPress website to make it look and function phenomenally.
But, again a question pops into your mind – which one to choose?
Well, I will give you an instant answer –
Think about three key features
- content management and
- social sharing and marketing (SEO)
Let’s introduce some of the plugins that cover these three features.
- Yoast SEO
This plugin enables you to optimize your content for search engines – super useful for getting traffic to your website.
It automatically grades content for metadata and keywords and tags areas for improvement.
In other words, Yoast SEO improves your on-page SEO. It helps you to generate sitemaps, optimize your site for social media, etc. It detects changes in URLs and creates auto-redirects – you don’t want to have any broken links on your site.
You can install Yoast SEO from the WordPress directory for free, but the premium is also available.
Do you want to set up a full-service online store?
Then this plugin is a perfect solution for you!
It has ample fully customized themes and product page layouts. Also, it supports sales for digital, physical products, and affiliate marketing.
It also comes in a free or premium version.
- Creative Mail
This plugin makes email marketing much easier, because it pulls WordPress blog posts,
And WooCommerce products directly to your email. It’s awesome if you want to automatically
syndicate blog posts, send newsletters, event promotions, and announcements.
You can manage your email marketing directly from the admin dashboard.
Do you want to grow your business? Experience all the benefits of this plugin!
- WordFence Security
Security comes first!
This WordPress plugin represents a full-featured security solution.
It gives you a firewall with a huge number of features and protection from hackers, malware, and viruses.
It is powered by a constantly updated Threat Defence Feed and alerts you quickly about security problems and if your website is compromised. It blocks fake Googlebots, malicious scans from hackers or botnets.
This is a super easy plugin, that enables you to drop and drag building pages for customization
of every aspect of your website. You can design your website any way you like.
With this plugin you edit your site live, meaning you can see right away how it looks like.
You have no limits.
– Pretty Links
This plugin is the best for link management for WordPress. You can easily manage affiliate links, which can sometimes be long and “ugly”. You can make them shorter and catchier for sharing. Also, you can add your domain name If you are an affiliate marketer, business owner, or podcaster this plugin is perfect for you to make short URLs super easy.
This is an amazing plugin if you want to get more email subscribers and sales.
You can use a huge number of high-converting templates and create slide-ins, popups, announcement bars, etc.
Do you want to capture your user’s full attention? Then use this plugin to create full-screen welcome mats.
This powerful tool is perfect if you are a blogger or you own a business website.
It is also profitable because it can make money from your generated traffic.
Power + profit = AWESOME PLUGIN
This plugin enables you to track traffic, visitor statistics, clicks directly from your admin dashboard. It brings features of Google Analytics without having to install it manually.
This plugin comes in handy if you are a small business owner. There are a lot of thighs to worry about like marketing and accounting.
This plugin helps you with the optimization.
It is a multi-purpose caching plugin that scans your WordPress website and tracks what’s making it slow.
It’s super easy to use because it has a one-click fix function.
- 10. BlogVault
This is an awesome plugin for backup service. It’s a SaaS – Software as a Service solution that independently creates offsite backups on BlogVault servers. This means that there is no load on your server – it won’t overload.
It does backups every day and ensures optimal performance for your site.
One more plus – it enables you to recover your website easily from any mishap.
So, there you have it.
When you choose the right set of plugins you can make your website secure, look better, or make money. Everything your site needs a proper plugin will provide it.
The sky is your limit.
7. Promote Your Blog - Stay Ahead Of The Game
Now, we have come to the grand finale – promoting your blog.
After investing a lot of time and energy into creating your blog, now it’s time to make a mind-blowing promotion plan and reach stardom.
Why do you stay ahead of the game with promotion, you might ask?
Well, let me answer your question in the following chapter.
Keep in mind that not all blogs hit the jackpot. The ones that do – have a great selling point.
So, find out what is your blog’s spotlight and continue to promote that.
OK, I must point out that successful promotion of your blog won’t happen overnight, but you can use several methods to promote it easily. Just remember who is your target audience and how you want to reach them.
Let’s dive into these methods
– Always, always, always use visuals.
Media like images and videos will make your blog posts more visually attractive, and people will easily memorize them.
Just think about this statistic – people remember 70% of visual content and much much much less a written word!
Other visuals you can use are data-driven content in the form of charts and graphs. This is a cool method for promotion if you are starting a business blog- people will understand your facts and figures more easily with these visuals.
GIFs– they show you are internet trendy.
They are easily shared on social media and they show emotions.
Screenshots- they are maybe the easiest way to create visuals for your blog.
Illustrations – they make your blog posts stand out among a huge amount of photos. They can also be entertaining.
Infographics- As the word says itself- this is an appealing image or chart with a short overview of the content. This is a super cool visual because it has all you need – striking photos plus easy to understand information. You can easily hook your readers with this awesome promotional trick.
There are some simple infographic designing tools you can find and use thousand of free templates. Or you can make your own – it’s all up to you.
Do you want readers to remember your content or brand – just add as many visuals as you think is appropriate! You will be remembered for sure!
Next to visuals, another thing that will make your blog stand out is:
- Creating stunning content.
When I say stunning first I mean high-quality content. Writing content just for the sake of it won’t be helpful.
- Optimize your blog content to make it searchable (SEO)
What do you need to do to have SEO?
- On-site SEO – set your site up so that Google search engines can rank you higher.
- On-page SEO – write content that makes Google users satisfied.
- Off-site SEO – promote your blog content and get relevant backlinks!
SEO means that you need to do keyword research and find out which terms are ranking high. Then you write those terms, naturally, in your content.
Also link to relevant internal pages and influential external sites.
What is the benefit of optimization?
Well, this is a super-easy way to allow readers to land on your website organically, and share your awesome and useful blog content.
Format your post – attract reader’s attention
When your post is well-formatted, readers will skim (see if they actually want to read it) it easily and dive deeper if they want to.
So, how do you do it when starting a blog?
Here are some tips
- Take your long text and divide them with headers and subheaders
- Try using numbered and bulleted lists for key information (as I did here)
- Always put key points in bold or italics
- Always use quality pictures
- Write shorter paragraphs – this helps readers to skim the text or read it easily on their mobile phone
Use link building to promote your blog and people will regard you as a valid source of information.
How can you use links in promotion?
Well, simply ask your customers to link to your blog.
Always publish useful, but also entertaining content – then people will share!
Write informational and sensational posts, like new data, study, or research – connect with your industry news sources. Links that go back to your original source will build trust between you and your customers.
- Use social media to share your blog
This is a super cool way to promote your content.
Create a different social media content calendar with awesome posts.
Use HASHTAGS with the keyword that is relevant to your post and also add them to your updates on Facebook, Google+, or Twitter.
Readers won’t miss out on your blog this way.
You can also send DIRECT MESSAGES to inform about your new blog post. Send them to readers who have already shared your posts or to new followers who you think might be interested in your content.
Awesome places for direct messages are LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.
ONE TIP – Don’t overdo it and face unfollows or unlikes – always know your audience!
Another cool trick –
Integrate social media with your blog.
This basically means connecting popular social media sites with your content.
People who read your blog will easily engage with your awesome content through social media buttons (Facebook likes, Twitter follows) that they see on your blog.
Or they can share your content with SHARE BUTTONS.
Again, tone it down – don’t go overboard! Remember the old saying – Sometimes less is more.
Choose a few social media sites, apart from the traditional ones like Facebook or Twitter and this promotional trick will do just fine.
- Quora is here again!
As I mentioned before it is a forum where you can engage with people who are interested in topics you write on your blog. It is a phenomenal promotion opportunity.
All you need to do is create an account and really try to help users with their questions. Keep the URL of your blog on your account so that users can find you on their own.
7. Reddit – Another forum you can use for promotion
Look for your niche subreddits- check out what people are asking and what they are sharing.
You can submit posts, leave comments, upvote or downvote content, etc.
It has a feature called KARMA which shows how much you have contributed.
Once you feel ready, start sharing your own content, but make sure it’s relevant, educational for your subreddit – users will find it helpful and this will generate extra traffic that you need.
8. Go to the Flipboard social network site
This website collects the news from the web and stocks it on its cloud where readers can check them out.
But also-and this is super convenient for you- it lets bloggers flip their blog posts so that their followers can read the content right from the platform.
So – an awesome way to drive traffic to your blog – don’t you think?
9. Use heat maps
Heat maps are an amazing visual way for you to gather information about user engagement. With this tool, you can improve the user experience.
It works like a thermometer – it ranks which features users engage as hot or cold.
It shows what pages users click on, where they scroll, what content they read, etc.
Heat maps will definitely work for you if you want to improve your users’ experience.
10. Influencers rule!
Connecting to influencers in your niche is a top promotional trick.
Just build a relationship with them before you ask them to promote your blog and you are good to go!
How can you build relationships with influencers?
I don’t want to discourage you but I must say it takes some time to do it.
You see, influencers don’t have a lot of time to spare so you need to present them the content that is helpful to their target audience.
Killer tip: don’t search for social media accounts with tons of followers
(they could be fake)!
Search for people who have a lot of retweets – this means real engagement!
You can use an awesome tool Buzzsumo, to search for influencers and sort them by their average retweet rate in any niche. Then you can filter the list and see what they are interested in – what content they are prone to sharing.
So, find influencers that are in the same niche as you are or the ones that REALLY have good reasons for sharing links from bloggers who are in a different niche (This might need extra effort invested to succeed).
Another Tip: When you do make a list of influencers that are you could link with, don’t be pushy right away!
Try some gentler tactics like subscribing to their newsletter, finding out how you could help them, and build a relationship. Also, you could share their top content and write value-adding comments on their blog posts.
Now, it’s time to create killer content
that will beat all other search engine results for your keyword.
How can you do it?
Simply use Ahrefs to look at previous top content promotion pieces. Here you can check an influencer website related to your niche and see “best by links” or “top pages” and find out which pages are linked the most by the influencer.
So, when you land on the content that is linked the highest, get ready to hammer it with quality.
Pro Tip: Create some spicy content promotion to inform the influencers that you are preparing something unforgettable!
One other thing you could do – use search engines to see weekly or monthly roundups in your niche. You’ll be surprised to see how many authors are crazy about linking to awesome content promotion, and in return sending traffic your way
Since your blog is new, cultivate the relationship with the influencers to build authority with your target audience.
In the end, when you link to high-quality websites you nailed it with your blog promotion!
11. Let other Bloggers in your world!
Connect to other bloggers by reading and sharing their posts and leaving comments with let’s say Twitter. If you have your blog’s URL on Twitter the blogger will look at your blog and return the favor.
Try creating a Top 20 List of Bloggers In (your niche) post and link back to the bloggers.
They will definitely appreciate this act of acknowledgment and link back to you.
They will invite you back and you will get links for your blog and they will also feature it in their social media updates and shares.
Talk about huge blog promotion!
You can also become a member of the viral content buzz community and your content will go viral if you take part in participating in mutual content distribution through different social media channels.
If you have a WordPress Blog (which you do), use the Jetpack Publicize plugin and it will automatically send your fresh post to your social media pages.
Let’s say you have just written an awesome fresh post. You can use this plugin on Tumblr for example. It will share a teaser, but readers will be tempted to check out the whole post.
Another plus for your blog promotion!
This plugin works for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Path, and Google+.
Next- where can you promote your blog?
The place is just as important as the manner of promotion.
- Use emails
First, start a blog newsletter to build a list of readers.
Cultivate this precious list of readers because they will provide feedback and share your blog content – an awesome promotional tactic for you!
You can include a call-to-action (CTA) for readers interested in reading your posts. This is a great way to convert readers first into your subscribers and next into customers.
KILLER TIP– always send emails to your subscribers when you publish something new.
- And again – The inevitable Social media!
You can promote your content on Twitter for example, because many professionals use this network actively and can start talking to you or mentioning your blog with a tweet. Don’t forget to tag relevant people.
Also, you could add an option ClickToTweet to the best quotes on your blog. Why?
Well, sometimes your readers don’t have enough time to read the whole post or they just want to share some cool parts of it. Nevertheless, this cool option creates a link back to your blog from the readers’ Twitter profiles.
The readers will return to your blog and read the whole post and you will get a powerful boost to your blog promotion.
One thing you should take note of is the time of your posts. Always post when your target audience is online.
Don’t leave out other big social network platforms:
Do you like these blog promotion tactics? If yes, then get cracking on that blog promotion strategy!
The possibilities are endless.
So, this is my ultimate guide to start a blog.
Now, I would like to turn it over to you.
What do you think about this guide?
Is there something I didn’t cover?
Let me know by leaving a comment below.