How To Start A Blog: Easy Step-By-Step Guide For Beginners
If you are looking for an easy guide on how to start a blog that makes money, you are in the right place! This easy step-by-step guide for beginners will show you exactly how to set up a profitable blog in 30 minutes or less.
Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links, which means that I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you.
If you’ve been thinking about starting a blog for a while, you should do it TODAY as the main regret most bloggers have is not starting their blogs sooner!
Blogging is fun, you get to be creative and make money.
Whether you’re looking to escape the 9-5, you want to find a profitable side hustle to make some extra money or you want the freedom to travel the world, starting a blog is one of the best things that can help you achieve those goals.
I have created a step-by-step guide on how to start a blog and you will see it’s much easier than you think!
Is It Still Worth Starting A Blog In 2021?
You may be wondering whether with millions of blogs on the internet it’s even worth starting one these days.
The answer is YES but you need to do it right.
The only way to stand out from the crowd is to write the best content out there and give your readers a reason to come back.
There are certain things you need to do right at the beginning to ensure your blog has the potential to become successful and profitable.
This post is an easy step-by-step guide for beginners on how to start a blog the right way and avoid mistakes that may jeopardize your chances of success.
A word of warning: blogging can be very rewarding but it’s hard work and it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme!
However, it is entirely possible to start earning $1k or more per month within the first year of blogging.
The most successful bloggers out there earn $10k to $200k+ per month! These bloggers once were exactly where you are now – starting their blogs from scratch and trying to figure it all out.
You don’t need any technical skills, such as coding or specialist knowledge to start a blog. All you really need is a computer and an internet connection.
Before we move on, please make sure to pin this guide on Pinterest for future reference and to help it reach more readers who are also looking for information on how to start a blog.
Without further ado, let’s jump straight into setting up your blog!
How To Start A Blog
1. Pick A Niche
What is a niche? A niche is basically the topic that your content will be focused on.
The first thing you need to do before starting a blog is to decide what you want to blog about.
If you want your blog to grow into a business, choosing a niche is one of the most important steps you need to take.
One of the huge mistakes that make the majority of blogs fail is that people blog about things THEY want to write about but it’s not necessarily something that anyone wants to read about.
Just like with any product, in order for it to be successful, there must be a demand for it on the market.
You need to understand that your aim is to provide value for your readers, give them what they are looking for and answer the specific questions they type into Google search.
You need to define your target audience and write for them, not for yourself.
When you are a new blogger, nobody is going to be interested in what your favorite brand of breakfast cereal is because nobody knows who you are at this stage.
Unless you are a celebrity and people search the internet to find out what you eat for breakfast!
If you want to blog about travel, for example, you need to focus on travel tips and travel guides as opposed to telling personal travel stories.
The niche you choose should be of course something you are also interested in.
If you pick a niche that you find utterly boring, you are unlikely to succeed as blogging will soon become a chore that is eventually going to kill your enthusiasm.
Another thing to consider when choosing a niche for your blog is whether it has the potential to generate income in the long run.
To help you out, I have listed the most profitable blog niches below.
- Personal Finance
- Business And Marketing
- Fashion And Beauty
- Health And Wellness
- Personal Development
If you are struggling to choose a specific narrow niche to blog about, you could start with a broader lifestyle blog that includes a set of topics targeting a specific audience.
As an example, travel, fashion, beauty, and fitness would appeal to young professional females whilst DIY crafts, food recipes, and parenting would be perfect for moms.
It’s absolutely fine to start out broad and niche down once you know what your audience likes the most.
2. Choose A Name For Your Blog
Whilst choosing a name for your blog is important, it’s not something you should be getting overly fixated on.
A good blog name should be catchy, easy to remember, and not too long.
Should your blog name be related to your niche?
It can be beneficial, however, there are plenty of extremely successful blogs out there with pretty random names, such as “Chasing Foxes” so your blog is not going to fail just because its name is not strictly related to its niche.
3. Purchase Your Hosting And Domain Name
The next thing to do is purchase your hosting and your domain name.
You must have a web host in order to have a blog.
A web host is essentially where your website “lives.”
A blog host company will store your blog on its servers, making it accessible online.
I use Bluehost and I would also recommend it for anyone who wants to start a blog.
They now have a special rate of only $3.49/month (based on a 36-month term) which includes the following:
- FREE DOMAIN NAME FOR A YEAR
The domain name is an URL, i.e. your website address that contains your blog name.
- AUTOMATIC WORDPRESS INSTALLATION
Bluehost is an official WordPress recommended hosting provider.
When you create a web hosting account with Bluehost, they will automatically install the latest and most secure version of WordPress onto your account.
- FREE SSL CERTIFICATE
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, a global standard security technology that enables encrypted communication between a web browser and a web server.
SSL protects websites from phishing scams, data breaches, and other threats. It builds a secure environment for both visitors and site owners.
- FREE CDN
A CDN (Content Delivery Network) is a highly distributed platform of servers that prevents delays in loading web page content by reducing the physical distance between the server and the user.
This allows users around the world to view the same high-quality content without slow loading times.
- FREE THEME
A theme is responsible for the layout and appearance of your blog.
- 24/7 CUSTOMER SUPPORT
Bluehost is one of the best and most popular web hosts out there. I use them because of their reliability, excellent technical support, and great pricing.
Bluehost comes with super easy setup instructions. I have included a step-by-step guide for you below.
The first thing you need to do is to head over to Bluehost and click the “Get Started” button.
Select the package you are interested in. The basic package is all you really need at this stage.
You need to then register your domain name.
Your domain name should be made up of your blog name and a “.com” extension.
Without going into too much detail, having a “.com” domain has numerous advantages over other extensions, such as credibility, reliability, and popularity.
Type the domain name of your choice in the bar on the left and it will tell you if it’s available.
If you’ve already bought a domain from a third-party provider, you can set it up with Bluehost using the bar on the right-hand side.
Enter your personal and payment information and choose any package extras that you’d like.
The only extra I would recommend getting at this stage is the domain privacy protection that will protect your site from hackers and keep your personal address private.
Next, review your package information. Bluehost charges you for the entire 36 month period upfront and this is how you’re able to get such a good deal.
Create a password for your account.
And it’s all done!
4. Install WordPress And Choose A Theme
Now you have a domain name and hosting, you will need to have free WordPress software installed that will enable you to publish posts on your blog.
But thanks to Bluehost, you don’t have to do it yourself as WordPress will be automatically be installed on your hosting account after you’ve completed the set-up.
Click on “Go to login” and enter your details.
After you’ve signed in you’ll see a page that looks like this:
This is where you need to enter your blog’s name and some other information about your website and what it is about.
Once you’ve done filling in all the fields click “Continue”.
The next step is picking a free theme for your blog.
Bluehost has a variety of themes to choose from and they are completely free.
You’ll get a list of recommended themes based on the information you entered in the previous step. You can also search through different categories and choose the theme you like the most.
Don’t worry if you are unsure what theme works best for your blog at this stage. You can easily change the theme later or even upload one that you bought elsewhere.
If you like the theme I use, it’s from 17th Avenue so go ahead and check out their collection of stylish and affordable themes later on if you decide to switch your theme.
Once you picked your theme, WordPress will be automatically installed on your account which means you officially have a blog!
Now that you have WordPress installed it’s time to play around with your website and customize it.
When you click on “WordPress” it will take you to your WordPress dashboard.
WordPress dashboard is where you can manage your blog posts, pages, and plugins.
Once you are ready to launch your website, click on the “Launch your site” button in your dashboard for your blog to go live.
And you are done!
Now your blog is set up, you are probably wondering what to do.
In a nutshell, you need to start creating quality content that will bring visitors to your blog before you are able to monetize it.
As I have mentioned before, your content must be providing value to your readers. Before you write a blog post, you have to make sure there is a demand for it, meaning it has the potential to generate traffic to your blog.
You need to also make sure your content reaches the audience it’s intended for.
I have included some guidance for you below to give you an idea of what your next steps should be.
How To Get Traffic To A New Blog
The only two reliable sources of blog traffic you should be focusing on are SEO and Pinterest.
Ignore Facebook group traffic threads, posting on Twitter, etc. You may get a few clicks from it but it’s neither sustainable nor valuable traffic and it’s definitely not a long-term strategy.
Let’s look briefly at SEO and Pinterest. I will not go into too much detail in this post but I will explain what it’s all about and where to go for more information.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and it’s the traffic that comes from Google and other search engines.
Getting traffic from search engines is the most important and valuable type of organic traffic you can get. However, it’s not going to happen overnight.
Firstly, you need to learn how SEO works.
In a nutshell, you will need to write SEO-optimized posts focusing on keywords that have enough search volume to bring traffic to your blog, but also a low competition allowing you to rank on the first page of Google.
You will need to learn the secrets of the keyword research process to identify the keywords that you have a chance to rank for.
Please note it can take up to 8 months for a blog post to achieve its top ranking on Google.
You will need to also build some page authority to have a chance of ranking for any keywords.
You can build your page authority by getting backlinks to your blog from high-authority websites relevant to your niche. This can be done for example through guest posting.
As you can see, SEO it’s more of a long-term strategy that requires time and patience but you should continuously work on it from day one.
Learning SEO from the start can set you up for a lifetime of organic steady traffic.
There is plenty of free information online on how to use SEO.
There is a plugin called Yoast SEO that is a must-have tool for all bloggers. This plugin gives you exact instructions on how to optimize your posts for the search engines.
The good news is, it’s much easier and quicker to get traffic to your new blog from Pinterest.
Pinterest is currently one the fastest ways you can get free traffic to your website within a short period of time.
Pinterest works more like a search engine rather than a social media platform but it’s much easier to get quick results from Pinterest than from Google.
You will need to learn what’s trending on Pinterest and how to optimize your pins.
It’s not difficult but there is a lot of misleading and confusing information out there so I would recommend focusing on one reliable source.
I have purchased several Pinterest courses myself and I highly recommend Pinterest Traffic Avalanche by Create and Go.
From this course, you will learn the secrets of how you can skyrocket your blog traffic from Pinterest for free.
You really can get tons of traffic from Pinterest, even as a new blogger which will allow you to start earning money from your blog.
How To Earn Money From A Blog
Like many other beginner bloggers, you have been probably wondering how bloggers actually get paid.
There are many ways for bloggers to make money and it all comes down to offering something of value in exchange for money.
But before you can start making money you need to bring some traffic to your blog.
There are many ways that you can earn money from your blog, such as:
To use display ads, a blogger signs up to an ad network that places ads on their site.
The bloggers get paid per impression, i.e. how many times the ad is seen (so the viewer does not have to click on the ad), or per click, i.e. the blogger receives money when someone clicks on the ad.
The most popular display advertising networks used by bloggers are:
- Google AdSense – there is no monthly minimum amount of traffic required to apply but if your traffic is below 10k sessions per month, you are likely to earn only a few dollars per month from the display ads.
- Ezoic – you need to have a minimum of 10k site visits per month to be able to apply. Once you reach that 10k visit requirement, it’s really worth joining Ezoic as you could be earning a few hundred dollars per month from the display ads.
- Mediavine – you need a minimum of 50k monthly sessions to be able to apply. This is the ad network that everyone wants to join and for a good reason. Once you reach the minimum traffic requirements and get approved by Mediavine, you will be able to earn some really good money from the display ads.
***Please note the amounts of monthly earnings from the display ads may vary. The figures mentioned above are only approximate and based on the average earning examples***
While you can place ads on your site right from the start, as I have mentioned before you will not make much money until you have around 10k page views per month, so I would advise waiting until you hit that mark before adding ads to your site.
Affiliate marketing is one of the easiest and most popular ways to make money online.
An affiliate promotes a company’s products using a special link that identifies them as the traffic source. When a reader clicks on that link and purchases the product, the affiliate earns a commission.
An example of that would be when someone is an Amazon affiliate and they promote Amazon products on their blog. Whenever someone clicks on one of the affiliate links and makes a purchase, the blogger earns a commission.
The majority of brands either have their own affiliate programs or they are a part of an affiliate network so whenever you link to a product on your blog, it may as well be an affiliate link giving you an opportunity to earn a commission.
The percentage of commission paid by brands and affiliate networks varies so make sure to choose the ones that offer a decent payout.
Sponsored content is when a company pays you to create content about its brand or products.
There are many ways to find sponsored opportunities, such as influencer networks, Facebook groups, or by approaching brands directly.
Once you have built enough traffic and authority, brands will contact you asking to place sponsored posts on your site.
Selling Products And Services
Selling digital products such as printables, ebooks, or blogging courses is a very popular way to earn money from a blog as it comes with high earning potential and minimal costs.
Bloggers also sell services, such as coaching, and consulting.
These are the most popular ways that you could earn money from your blog.
Once you have enough traffic, you can explore the above options and start making money!
Whilst there is so much more to learn, this information should get you up and running.
I hope you find this article helpful and it has encouraged you to start your own blog today.
I wish you all the best on your blogging journey!
Thanks for stopping by!