Blogging is one of the best and profitable things you can do either as your main job, part-time work or simply for fun and transfer your work into a source of income. As a blogger, you have the freedom to work when you want, how you want and the way you want. To me, it simply turning your passion into profit.
The good thing about blogging is that you can choose to Blog about anything and any topic of your interest. Anyone can choose to become a blogger, your age or location can’t restrict you as far as you want to blog.
The startup cost for blogging is about $40 to $100 depending on what you want. The Cost of starting a blog will be discussed in detail below.
Starting a blog is challenging as it comes with a lot of responsibilities. As a new blogger, you might want to take your time and do things the right way from the get-go in order to have a successful blogging career.
Blogging can be fun and a source of livelihood if you choose to do it for a living. There is no magic involved in blogging and becoming very successful just like other well-known successful bloggers is very possible.
The good news is that everyone that is willing to blog for a living can be extremely successful at it. it takes important steps in implementing good blogging strategy together with some tools, the rest comes naturally from your passion and love for the job and you will be on your way to making a good living while blogging.
In this post, we have laid down all you need to do to become a successful blogger. Take some time and read this post carefully till the end and you will have a reason to say thank you 🙂
Setting up your Blog
One of the first things you will need to do is to register a domain. My advice is you should register a domain that contains your keyword for the sake of search engine optimization (SEO).
You might choose to register the domain on your name as many others do but simply have it at the back or your mind that it will be better having a domain that contains your most important keyword will have some positive impact on your SEO results.
1. Domain and Blog hosting Plan
Once that is done, you can move to the next step and purchase a hosting plan. This can be also done at Godaddy or any other hosting company of your choice. Preferably, you can go for a hosting company that is based in your country or offer cheaper hosting plans.
You can use any hosting company of your choice to buy and register a domain. The most popular place to buy domain names and hosting plans are Godaddy.com, Hostgator.com, and Namecheap.com.
2. Blogging Platform
Nowadays there are multiple blogging platforms to choose from. The good news is, the majority of them offer free versions to get you started. The most popular blogging platforms are WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, Wix, Joomla, Squarespace, Drupal, and Ghost etc.
To make things a bit easier for you, WordPress is highly recommended. This is because it is very easy to use and also gives you more control and customization opportunities.
Another good reason to choose WordPress is that Wordpress is built for Search engine optimization which helps your search engine visibility, traffic and overall exposure you need to grow your blog.
3. Cloudflare integration
Cloudflare is a platform that offers content delivery network services (CDNs), Internet security, DDoS mitigation, and distributed domain name server services. Their services sit between the visitor and the Cloudflare user’s hosting provider, acting as a reverse proxy for websites.
So why do we recommend you use Cloudflare, well, in lay man’s terms, it helps make your blog faster and prevent it from internet attacks that might cause damage to your server and Blog content.
Cloudflare has multiple servers around the word which makes their servers deliver content faster to any visitor regardless of their region or country. this is why we said it acts like a reverse proxy for your blog.
4. SSL Certificate
Another important security feature you need is the SSL certificate. SSL stands for (Secure Sockets Layer) which is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted connection between a web server and a browser.
The primary reason for this is to make sure all data communication between the web server and the browser remain private and integral.
Google made SSL certificate as one of the ranking factors since 2015 which even makes it more important for webmasters to consider if you want your content to rank high in Google.
This part of your blog is very important. You need to make your blog looks appealing to your readers in every sense as people are attracted to good-looking blogs.
The way your blog looks may make some visitors subscribe to your mailing list so as to keep coming back. To make your blog look beautiful, here are the things you need…
While choosing a theme, you need to consider some themes impact the speed of your blog and it overall looks. Depending on your blog type or niche, you may consider choosing a theme that suits your niche and looks appealing to your readers.
Themes come in various designs, some themes are designed to suit video and photography, some are designed to fit news content, some fits general blogging while some fit better on tourist blogs or fashion blogs.
It is very important you choose a theme that suits your blogging style or niche and at the same time its fast and attractive.
Plugins come handy especially if your blogging platform is WordPress. There are thousands of plugins ranging from security plugins, search engine optimization plugins, and design plugins.
It depends on your need, you will always find a plugin to help you achieve your need. What you need to understand is that, minimize the number of plugins you use. This is because using too many plugins may make your blog speed slow and that’s the last thing you would want for your blog.
Templates are simply the equivalent of Themes when it comes to the Blogger.com platform. The good thing with Blogger.com is because it own by Google which comes with most of the things you need including built-in templates.
Apart from the built-in templates, you can always buy more customized templates to fit your blog niche or style. It is important to keep in mind the design and weight of your template so it won’t slow down your blog.
8. Font size and colors
Font size and colors give an appealing look to your blog content. Apart from that, the font size of your text makes it easier for your visitors and search engine crawlers to read and understand your blog better.
Google takes seriously and you should also. The trick is that make sure your font size is not too small, and the headings are specified correctly with the right font sizes.
Google has a massive list of font sizes you can choose from to make your blog more appealing and easier to read by both your visitors and search engine crawlers
Branding your Blog
Blog branding just like any other business makes you stand out among other similar bloggers within your niche or let’s say your competitors. For effective branding, here is what you need…
The logo gives your blog a unique identification and makes it easy for your readers to identify your content. It is very important you design a cool and attractive looking logo which can be used on all your content including images and email signature.
Keep things simple but with your logo but at the same time make sure is unique. keep in mind your logo serves as your identity and it should have the look possible.
10. Email Signature
Having an email signature serves as an extra layer of marketing. Your email signature should contain all the valuable contact information about you and your blog.
Adding your social media icons connected to your social media profile links, phone number and logo, address, domain, the name of the sender or the Blog title of your blog and obviously your email will go a long keeping you connected with your audience and new subscribers.
See the below email signature for example…
11. Claim your Brand name
This is another important part of the branding and marketing of your blog. make sure you have a unique and one name for all your social media profiles.
Claim one unique name for all your social media profile. People should always identify you by your name where ever they see your name or blog title on all the social media platforms.
12. Business cards
You can print business cards and exchange when you meet people or co-workers. This allows you to network easily and at the same time gives your blog an extra leg for more exposure.
13. T-shirt and Caps
This is not necessary both will sure have some positive impact on your blog within your community. T-shirt and face caps are a good way of branding any product, services.
If you have some extra cash, you can go for it. you can try selling them on your blog especially when your blog gets popular and is well known within your community.
Blog search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most important if not the most important thing you would need to get right while setting up your blog and during your blogging career.
Search engine optimization basically helps get your blog indexed by search engines. Over time it helps your blog posts rank higher in search engines. This gives you a lot of organic traffic overtime and tremendously increase your exposure.
Here is a list of important SEO checklist for your blog…
There are two types of Sitemaps, the HTML and XML sitemaps. In the simplest form, these are files that contain all the list of your Blog or website URLs including their meta descriptions and their updates.
These files are uploaded in your public HTML folder to enable search engines to easily crawl, understand and index your content.
It is an important step to start a cordial relationship with the search engines. I always advise bloggers to make sure they have an XML sitemap and if possible both XML and HTML sitemaps to be created and submitted for both humans and search engines.
For more information about sitemaps and how to create and submit sitemaps, watch the video below.
15. Yoast Plugin
This is for bloggers who are using WordPress, Yoast SEO plugin is simply the best SEO plugin you can use to help rank your blog in certain keywords.
This plugin helps you check the quality of your content such as title, meta descriptions, keyword density, readability analysis, redirects, search appearance, social media, and other important SEO tools.
It is very important you use this plugin if you want to have your blog picture perfect in search engines and rank on your most important keywords.
16. Webmaster tools
Webmaster tools are essential tools for your overall performance. Make sure as a blogger, you are using all the search engine webmasters such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, and Yandex webmasters.
Using webmaster tools helps you find issues with your blog such as indexable issues, crawl issues, sitemaps issues that enable you to take actions and keep your blog healthy.
Another important feature of webmasters tools is, it enables you to have a clear understanding of which keywords you are ranking for and their overall performance. The same applies to all your blog post and pages.
It also shows you where you are getting backlinks from and which URL are getting the most backlinks and where those backlinks are coming from. There is a tone of feature and benefits of using webmasters so go for it.
As a blogger, you will find keyword tools as a close friend as you will be making use of it always. Each time you are about to write a blog, you will have to go through keyword research to determine which keywords are the most appropriate for your blog post.
The same applies when you are forming a title of your blog and writing your meta descriptions. One of the best and free keyword research tool is the Google keyword planner.
My advice for choosing keywords: As a beginner, always go for low competitive keywords with high research volume. You can choose to add at least two medium and high competitive keywords but make sure your focus and most dominant keywords are low competitive keywords with high search volumes.
The strategy here is that, as you rank higher for those low competitive keywords, with time you will be able to rank high on those high competitive keywords too.
18. Titles and Meta Descriptions
Title and meta descriptions are a very important part of your blogging career. You will always need to write great titles and meta descriptions that attract readers to click on your search results. That being said, the main page of your blog need a very descriptive title and meta descriptions that contain your most important keywords.
The reason for this is that It will tell search engines what exactly your blog or website is all about. This title and meta description must be added in the header section of your blog. see example below.
Here is the requirement for Google title and description,
- Titles: maximum of 78 characters
- Descriptions: between 110 & 120 characters maximum.
This also gets your content optimized for both desktop and mobile devices. Another trick you need to know is to stick your most important keywords in your title and meta description all the times.
Marketing your Blog
After you get your blog set up and ready to start blogging, the next thing you need to care about is how you can market your blog so you will get readers. Your blogging career won’t be profitable if you don’t have readers coming to your blog. Here are few things you can do and use to start getting traffic to your blog.
19. Social Meia profiles
One of the best and free way to market your blog is through social media. There are millions of people who are interested in reading your blog on a daily bases and they can be found on social media.
You need to create many profiles on all the social media platforms so you can share your blog post each time you create one. That way you can get the exposure you need to grow your blog through social media. At least create profiles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest etc.
20. Forum registrations
The forums work similar to the traditional media but with even more advantage. one great thing with forums is the categories they provide, here you will be able to communicate and network with people who are directly interested in your topic or niche.
You can learn a lot from forums as well as share your experiences with others. Learn how to answer questions on forums, that way you get people looking at your profiles and visiting your blog. which will increase your traffic.
21. YouTube Channel
YouTube gives you the opportunity to share your video, learn watching a ton of videos to improve your blogging skills. It will be great if are able to create videos and share them regularly on youtube. Youtube gives you targeted traffic and another opportunity to monetize your videos and make money.
Networking is another great way to market your self and your blog. You should take networking seriously if you can. This is because it gives you the opportunity to connect with other bloggers in various online and offline platforms. The benefits are numerous but to highlight just a few, you will be able to get backlinks, promote your blog through influencers, and grow faster and better.
23. Email subscription list
One thing you won’t want to miss is to have an email list. You can do this by creating an email funnel for your readers and followers to subscribe to your blog. This way, you will be able to send them emails each time you create a blog post. Email marketing should be part of your blogging career right from the start.
24. Post schedule tools
There are several post schedule tools these days including a lot of social media plugins that allow you to automatically post your content to social media platforms. It makes your work very easy as you are not manually posting on each of the social media platforms. All you need to do is to create your post and get them scheduled, once done your blog post will go out and post even when you are sleeping.
Monetizing your Blog
All your blogging efforts comes down to making money. There is no denying that people make a living out of blogging and you can also. Blogging can be more profitable if you know how to monetize your blog very well and here are the most popular ways you can monetize your blog.
25. Ad Networks
There are a lot of Ad Networks out there, both big and small, regional and global. The biggest Ad network is the Google Adsense. however, they do not accept everyone because of their requirement. In any case, there is a way out of the situation as you can always use our Ad Network AdsTargets.
We offer all the monetization possibilities just like Google Adsense. At AdsTargets, you can monetize your blog with Banners Ads, Text Ads, Interstitial Ads, and In-App Ads. across mobile and desktop devices. We accept publishers and advertisers all over the world.
25. Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is another great way to monetize your blog. The idea here is that you help people or businesses sell their products or services and in turn, you get a commission for every sale you make with your affiliate link. Many bloggers actually utilize this method and make a lot of money.
26. Sponsored posts
You can as well write a sponsored post for celebrities, businesses or whosoever need a sponsored post. Politicians are good customers for this, however, you will need your blog to become very popular before you can start writing sponsored posts.
27. Sell Ad Space
Many bloggers actually seel their Ad space only to the general online advertisers, you can do this by putting a banner asking advertisers to buy those ad space on your blog.
This is a very profitable way of making money with your blog as you charge advertisers periodically. make absolute use of those Ad space on your blog pages and sidebars to make money with your blog.
28. Sell products
Seeling stuff on your blog can be another way of making money. You may not have your own products but you can definitely sell other people’s products on your blog for a commission.
Remember I talked about designing your T-shirts and face-caps for branding your blog, you can negotiate with those manufacturers and get a better deal and start selling them on your blog. This will be your own product as well a branding strategy.
If you read this post till the end, you might be making a lot of money within six months after starting your blogging career. This post contains almost everything you need to become a professional blogger and a very profitable one. If you have been blogging already, please let us know your experiences and suggestions in the comment section of this blog post.
Good luck and happy blogging life.