Some people say blogging is dead, I say that’s total BS. Yes, videos capture people’s attention more, but blogging has an ease to it that can’t be done with video. People can refer back to what you say time and time again (and they can’t do it and not tip off their boss that they aren’t actually working…because reading is silent duhhh).
But if you search “how to start a blog” or “blogger income report” tons of searches come up. Why? Because humans are social creatures, and we want to know what other people think…about all topics! You can make a blog just for fun, to support your freelance career, to act as a portfolio, to become an authority, or to find a community of people interested in things you love. ( Funding22 is all of these things!) But the great thing is…all of these have a way to make you money. Keep reading for the basics of starting a blog and how to make money from it!
Step 1: Choose your niche for your blog
Now most people will tell you to create a profitable blog, you need to a have a specific niche. And I’m going to guess that 95% of the people telling you that are blogging about blogging, coaching, or product reviews. ( I guess I’m partially guilty there) But I’m also here to tell you that they’re wrong! You want to write about dog walking, soap operas and blogging? Hell yeah! Do it! The idea behind ‘niching down’ as the cool kids say, is that by picking a focused niche you will become an authority in that area, collect readers who care more about your topic, and you’re more likely to get sales on your affiliate links.
Spoiler; all those things are true. BUT there are also very successful lifestlye bloggers. In the end, if you put in the work, and let your personality shine, people will come for YOU. There are a thousand finance bloggers in the world, but each one attracts a slightly different audience because they tell their story in an unique way. As I tell my cat…Don’t let anyone dull your sparkle girl! *or guy, or nonbianary.
Step 2: Choose a web host
Spoiler….BlueHost is not the end all be all. It does however, provide the highest affiliate link reimbursement. Take it from someone who blogs AND professionally creates websites for clients. GoDaddy is easier to use, easier to get support on, and generally more fun to deal with. So next time someone puts BlueHost in a blog like this remember that they may just be doing it for a payday.
Step 3: Choose a blogging platform
Just use WordPress for gods sake. It easy to learn, easy to buy premade themes for, and easy to find people to help you. Just like….don’t go anywhere else okay?
Step 4: Pick a blog/domain name
This is where you get to have fun! Pick something that’s relevant to your niche (or to your story if you’re free-niching it). GoDaddy allows you to search for your URL to see if it’s available. If it says that the .com version isn’t available I recommend you move on. Yeah .net may be an option, but you’ll always be fighting whoever owns the real deal! Fun fact; Funding22 is a two part URL. 1. I’ve been planning this blog since I was 22 and just now lit the fire under my butt. And 2. I consider finances/freelancing one of life’s more enjoyable ‘Catch 22’ situations!
A common theme for blog names lately is something like CactusandCoins.com or PirahnasandPincushions.com. Maybe try something else? Yeah those are helpful for outlining what you like, but I be we’ll figure that out by reading your blog…so we don’t need it in the URL.
Step 5: Choose a Theme or Design for your blog
You can choose from tons of free themes on WordPress, but as a professional website designer, I say save yourself some trouble and buy a premade one. They run from $15-$150 and save you a ton of time and frustration. My favorite place to get blog themes is from Creative Market. (That’s where mine is from!) Make sure if you buy a theme that it’s not something called a ‘child theme’ that requires a ‘parent theme’. Those are a pain. *Insert eye rolling emoji here*
Step 6: Start making money from your blog
The basics for making money on a blog are as follows: 1. Sell a digital product. 2. Sell a physical product. 3. Sell coaching packages 4. Use affiliate links 5. Use your blog as a sales funnel for another social media site that also has ads. 6. Sign up for an ad network that places ads on your site.
Can you guess what most people do? If you guess 1/3/4 you would be correct! All require work, but using affiliate links is probably the easiest to understand and place on your site yourself. Basically they work like this. You find a product you like, and you get a personalized link for it. You put that link in your blog posts and then when people click through or buy that item, you get a kick back of some sort. Exactly how much you’ll get back, and whether or not people have to click on the link vs buy something depends on the link. There are a TON of affiliate programs. Stop by in a couple days for my affiliate link masterlist! No matter what type of blog you have, there are affiliate links that relate to it.