Want to learn how to blog and make money? In this complete guide on how to start a blog and earn money, I’ll walk you through how to create your first blog, get started producing valuable content, build an audience, and make money from blogging!
Blogging can really make you some pretty good money.
Let’s be honest: blogging is not the easiest way to make money. But the great thing is that anyone can do it, and it looks amazing on your resume.
Let’s find out how to get started, find your niche, and turn your blog into a source of income.
All you need to do is share something interesting and have enough patience and dedication to increase your traffic and follower count (Fans).
But how do successful bloggers make money?
This my guide gives you a concrete action plan to get your blog up and running and turn it into a profitable small business from home.
HOW TO START BLOGGING FROM SCRATCH
Getting started with blogging can seem like a bit of a minefield, especially if you have little technical knowledge.
When it comes to actually starting a blog, you have two main options:
- You can use a free blogging platform
- you can create your own website.
We’ll look at both options and outline their pros and cons so you can make the right decision for yourself and your blog.
Free Blogging Platforms are suitable for: Regular bloggers and those who are not interested in making money from their blog.
Free blogging platforms
Suitable for: Regular bloggers and those who are not interested in making money from their blog.
Pros: Easy to set up and does not require financial investment.
Cons: Restrictions on customizing and uploading videos/images, you often cannot advertise or use affiliate links, you cannot create your own url, and the platform reserves the right to delete your blog.
Many platforms allow you to create a blog for free, and they are very easy to use. If you just want to try blogging first, this might be for you.
But free blogging platforms can be very limiting. You will be limited in settings and your blog will have a storage limit, which can make it difficult to upload large videos and images.
Another drawback is that your blog URL will look something like www.example.wordpress.com with the platform’s branding.
Most free blogging platforms also don’t allow you to place banner ads or affiliate links on your site, which are key sources of income for most bloggers.
However, if that doesn’t bother you, here’s a rundown of the best free online blogging platforms.
BEST BLOGGING PLATFORMS
WordPress.com – It is a free basic blog hosting service that is easy to use. You will have to put up with WordPress ads and branding if you are not paying a monthly fee and you are unable to advertise on your site. There are also limited options for customization and expansion.
Blogger.com – Free blog hosting from Google, Blogger, is very easy to use. But the customization and design options are very limited and there aren’t many if you want to add new features.
LiveJournal.com – This free blogging platform with fast, easy sign-up allows you to interact with other users right on your blog pages. But because it is free, it limits your blog design and only provides 1GB of storage for your files.
CREATING YOUR OWN BLOG
Suitable for: serious bloggers and those who want to make money on their blog.
Pros: Full control over design and customization, your own URL, and the ability to use ads and affiliate links however you like.
Cons: You have to pay – first for your domain name (URL) and then for hosting, But you can contact me for tips to keep these costs down or set up a blog for you.
If you are not very tech-savvy, the thought of creating your own website may sound daunting, but it’s actually quite easy to do and you can create one in as little as 60 minutes.
By having your own website, you will be able to create a unique personal branding (with your own URL), and there is no risk of your blog being removed by the platform – you will be the owner of the site and have complete control over it.
WordPress offers an insane amount of templates or “themes” to choose from – take your time choosing, go through the many options to choose the one that suits both your personality and your blog theme.
Choose something clear and simple, with space for large images and legible fonts.
HOW TO CHOOSE A NICHE FOR YOUR BLOG
This can be both the easiest and the most difficult part of creating a blog.
The most important thing at this stage is to choose a niche in which you can call yourself an authority. The biggest mistake new bloggers make in such a crowded blogosphere is to start a blog without trying to do something amazing or unusual.
For example, if you are into fashion, instead of lumping together general fashion content, you could combine your love of clothing with your genuine concern for the environment by blogging about environmentally conscious designers.
Here are the best ways to find a Name for your new blog:
- Check out other blogs – The first thing to do is research the market and the competition. And more importantly, consider what competitors’ blogs are missing. Find gaps in the market.
- Use Google, Bing, and Yandex – To analyze your niche, you need to use tools from Google and Yandex, such as Google Ads and Wordstat by Yandex, respectively. These services will help you understand what people are requesting (a particular request) and how often. This will allow you to understand the approximate traffic for certain key phrases.
- Search the forums for frequently asked questions – When people cannot find answers to their questions, they go to the forums. What are they asking? What advice do they need? This will show what people are interested in and what the available information is lacking.
- Track current trends – What topics are the most interesting in the media now? It is good to choose a topic with a long history, but if you can catch a trend early on, you can quickly establish yourself as an expert on it before anyone else. A search for #WebsiteDesign on Twitter reveals what topics Website Designers are currently covering (in English).
- Think about different types of content – Can you prepare tutorials/practice guides? Reviews? Interview? Lists? Perhaps what sets you apart is not what you write about, but how you write.
- Identify your own interests and hobbies – While all of the above are important, there is no point in blogging about things that don’t interest you. You will quickly get bored and people will notice your lack of enthusiasm. Write about what really excites you.
HOW TO INCREASE TRAFFIC TO YOUR BLOG
Once you’ve built your website, came up with an interesting blog topic, and published your first articles, the big question is – where are all the readers?
You can’t just expect people to magically find your blog and start reading it. You have to promote it!
Here are the best and easiest ways to get more readers for your blog:
- Promote your blog on social media
As with any modern business, you are unlikely to be noticed unless you have social media accounts.
I will recommend setting up pages/accounts for your blog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, VK, YouTube and even LinkedIn (in any case, you are essentially your own business, right?). Decorate these accounts with the same color scheme/theme as your blog to keep your brand consistent and easily recognizable.
Platforms like Tiktok, Instagram, And YouTube are become so popular for uploading short videos and doing promotions.
Video advertising highlights or new product releases to spark your viewers interest. Create a great YouTube Thumbnail and Intro video for your channel, which will help you capture the interest of your viewers and entice them to watch the entire video.
To add a creative touch to your Intro/outro video, use online video editing tools like filmorago , intro maker or you can also download the apps like free intro maker, Inshot, Vidzeo, and outro maker app from the Google play store or Apple app store , where you will get stunning intro video templates to create amazing intro videos.
Use them to share new posts and tag other bloggers/influencers/companies who can share your content and help reach even more audiences.
You can also try paid advertising to help your blog reach a wider audience, or you can run a contest to get more likes. Once you have followers, keep them interested by posting on a regular basis (not just links to new blog posts).
- Chat with other bloggers
Inform other people who blog about similar topics about yourself. Even though you are technically a competitor, you will likely be pleasantly surprised at how supportive the blogging community can be.
Many bloggers even have a link page on their site that they use to link to many of their friends in the community in exchange for a link on their own blog. This will greatly help with your SEO (this is search engine optimization – how likely is it that your blog will appear in Google, Bing, and Yandex search results).
If you interact with other bloggers and share their content, they are more likely to reciprocate – you can even work on some collaborative projects!
- React to news on your blog
If something relevant to your niche is happening in the news, get involved. This is what we call “newsjacking” and it can bring you a lot of fun.
For example, if you blog about cheap food for students, keep an eye on things like our latest student money survey. Students can spend an average of $50 a week on groceries, but you can tell them how to spend less (while eating better!).
You can go to social media to give your opinion with relevant hashtags, take part in discussions, and even reach out to reporters to say you are available for comment.
If you are really good at your niche, journalists might even come to you.
- Create viral content
Creating viral content will help you enter a new market and, in turn, grow your audience.
This may be easier said than done, but the key to creating viral content is to tap into controversial or highly discussed topics related to your blogging niche – as you can imagine, this often involves newsjacking, as mentioned above.
Since this is your niche, you will be passionate, opinionated, and knowledgeable about it, so you can post an opinion that people will want to read, share and discuss.
HOW TO MAKE MONEY BLOGGING
How to Monetize Your Blog Once your blog is up and running, you can (finally!) Start looking for ways to make profit from it.
Here are the best and easiest ways to make money as a blogger:
- Do affiliate marketing on your blog
Affiliate marketing works by adding trackable affiliate links to the text of your blog. You can earn a small commission every time a reader goes to your recommended site and makes a purchase. This is called CPA (Cost Per Action).
Links will lead readers to the brand’s website, and the money you get is compensation for sending your readers to their site.
Almost all e-commerce websites have some kind of affiliate program like AliExpress, Jumia, Amazon, etc.
You can use affiliate programs from various companies in your niche or sign up for CPA affiliate programs and see what they can offer you.
Some of the most famous CPA affiliate programs are companies such as MaxBounty, Admitad, Leadbit, MyLead, FireAds, Advendor, and many others.
As a blogger, you always recommend products and services to your readers. Many companies offer affiliate programs, so it’s very easy to find suitable programs to join and start earning commissions.
The key to affiliate marketing is being authentic and sincere. Write reviews and articles with your honest opinion, and encourage your readers to buy something only if you think it’s a good product or service for them.
- Add banner ads to your website
As a more visual way to advertise, you can sell banner ad space on your blog page to brands that connect with your readers.
Ads can be placed anywhere, but you can usually find them at the top of your blog pages or in the sidebar.
You can generate income in one of two ways. CPC (cost per click) means that you will receive a set payment for every reader who clicks on your ad, while CPM (cost per thousand impressions) means that you will be reconciling a set payment for every 1000 impressions of your ad.
With the rise of adblockers like AdBlock, CPM and CPM can be very low, but it depends on your industry and shouldn’t be hard to try.
A quick way to get started is to create an account with Google Adsense, Media.net, or the Yandex Advertising Network.
- Write promotional materials and sponsored content
According to the bloggers we spoke with, one of the best ways to monetize your blog is by offering sponsored content (or promotional material). Basically, this is an advertisement in the form of a paid article or blog post.
For example, if Adidas is launching a new swimwear line and you have a women’s sportswear blog, they might offer to pay you to write an article about their range. You can also add some affiliate links at the top.
This monetization method usually works best when you have a strong niche audience.
Once you grow your audience and blog influence, brands will often reach out to you to discuss sponsored content.
- Publish sponsored guest posts
If you have a strong social media presence and high traffic, you will be very attractive to brands. Some people actually earn all of their blogging income from sponsored posts. You can charge posting/ republishing fees and the fees can be surprisingly high.
You just need to work hard at building your followers first – your “social proof” (or the number of people following you on social media) is viewed by brands as evidence that readers will also love what you post about them.
- Write posts on the guest blog of the media
Sometimes the press (or even brands that have their own blog) will reach out to you if you are an authority on a particular topic and ask you to make a small cameo on their website.
If you are particularly adept at cooking on a tight budget, for example, a newspaper might contact you and ask you to post some inexpensive recipes in their culinary magazine.
Feel free to post ideas – if editors don’t know who you are, a quick email introduction is a great way to get the word out about your blog.
- Sell digital products on your blog
If you have the skills and can give your audience a lot, another option is to charge a fee for access to eBooks, video tutorials, courses, or seminars.
For this option to work, you need to show that you are very good at what you do, or that your content has proven to be incredibly valuable. It is not simple.
It is quite difficult to convince online communities to pay as people tend to think that everything online should be free. But it’s worth a try, right?
- Sell Ad space on your blog’s newsletter
There is also the option to charge for ad space or mention in the weekly/monthly newsletter of your blog (if you have one!). It will take very little time, and you can get a reasonable sum for it.
However, you need to build a decent-sized mailing list for brands to consider this.
- Grab the attention of employers as a blogger
Using a blog to promote your own business or even to find a job is another (albeit indirect) way to make more money from your blog.
If you are one of the many students selling online, your blog is the perfect platform to promote what you have to offer.
You can also use your blog as a kind of online profile – on it you can build your credibility, show your skills, and hopefully get a good job out of it.
Think of it this way: Your blog itself is like your own small business, and by showing potential employers that you can do it successfully, you are showing that you have an entrepreneurial mind and know how to succeed with it.
THE BIGGEST PROBLEMS WITH BLOG MONETIZATION
Nothing worthwhile is complete without hard work and a few challenges.
To make a significant profit from blogging, you need to put in a decent amount of time and effort. Many bloggers only make pennies from monetizing their blog every month – and this is after working on their blogs for a while.
To be able to generate consistent blogging income, again, you need to have multiple streams of income from multiple sources. Monetizing a blog takes time and depends on your traffic. The more readers you have, the more attractive you are to advertisers.
Another big problem bloggers face is competition.
The blog market is filled with many aspiring bloggers fighting to get noticed. However, if you work on it with perseverance and consistency, it is possible to earn from blogging.
Can You Really Make Money Blogging?
As we have seen, the answer is yes! But how much money you can make from blogging can vary greatly. This is the nature of blog monetization at first, but bloggers do well over time.
Monetizing a blog takes time and depends on your traffic. The more readers you have, the more attractive you are to advertisers.
To make a decent blogging income, think of multiple streams of income, coming from different sources and in different ways.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR BLOG REMAIN PROFITABLE
- Proactively generate feedback.
Ask questions in your reviews, ask subscribers for their opinion on the topics under discussion, and don’t forget to respond to comments. Organize some kind of competition with symbolic prizes. It would be a great idea to create a forum, which, by the way, will have a positive effect on the promotion of your content in search results.
- Update your blog content regularly.
Make it as convenient and useful for your visitors as possible. These are articles using key queries, and video material, and the necessary unique graphic information, etc.
- Promote your blog gradually.
Now that you have learned how to start a blog and earn money, Remember it’s a gradual process.
One of the main mistakes of newbie bloggers is that having barely decided to create a website, they just rush to build up massive external links and are already rummaging through exchanges and Monetization Platforms in search of advertisers.
Remember that search engines don’t like blogs with low traffic and a high volume of inbound links.
Therefore, there is a chance that after you have earned small money, you get banned from exchanges and monetization platforms, and shut down your blog.
HOW TO START A BLOG AND EARN MONEY – FINAL WORDS ON
Spend the first six months, maybe more, on attracting subscribers with interesting and unique optimized content.
Only when their number increases, at least, 500 unique visits per day, you should think about starting to monetize your blog.
But in any case, do not try to place a bunch of banners, teasers, and links on your blog and force your readers to go to third-party sites.
Do not forget that, first of all, you work for people, therefore, think about their experience.
Also, If you read 100 guides on how to start a blog and earn money without taking any action, you will not earn a dime.
I hope that my article will not turn out to be useless to you, I hope it will help you at least a little to orient yourself for those who dream of creating their own blog.
I would be grateful to get feedback, comments, and recommendation of this my guide on how to start a blog and earn money.
I love building websites, creating content, and building brand awareness for clients through digital marketing strategies that lead to measurable success.
I am the founder of Rindx.com, Tycoon Concept, and Bloggers Gratis.