Do you really want to know how to start a blog.
Are you thinking of starting a blog and you have no idea how to go about it? You may have done a lot of searches to get information on how to blog and the problem is how to process and put it to work. Not to worry, this article will both save you some search time and also introduce you to a quick and easy-to-implement step-by-step tutorial for you to start up your blog.
Okay, have you already started a blog and want information on how to level up your blogging skills to earn big? You should read on and prepare to learn a whole lot of new and resourceful things.
Blogging includes a whole lot of things and it is important to start well with the right things put in place for more effective blogging. I will advise that you take your time reading this article. Jumping a line might cause you to miss out on an important tip. For every step, there are steps to take to achieve them.
Read on to find out how you can as a beginner start your blog in just less than ten steps.
- Step 1 – Choose a Niche that is just perfect for your blog
- Step 2 – Choose a Blogging Platform
- Step 3 – Pick out a Domain name
- Step 4 – Choose a Web Hosting Service
- Step 5 – Set up a Blog on WordPress
- Step 6 – Select the best theme and template for your blog
- Step 7 – Write, Optimize and Publish your first blog content
- Step 9 – Monetize your Blog
How to Choose a Niche
If you are intentional about making it a good blogger, then you should be particular about choosing the best niche to represent your blog. So how then do you choose a good niche for yourself? Choosing a good niche won’t be a problem if you put the three factors highlighted below into consideration.
Factor 1 – Find a pain point that an audience is willing to pay for.
Passion for blogging is not enough for you to start. The important thing is to find a niche that will solve a pain point for your audience, then passion can come after it to serve as the fuel.
Finding your audience pain point means you need to understand what your audience needs and will spend their money on. You will need to offer them exactly their need through your writing.
I guess the question on your mind now is “How do I identify my audience’s pain point?” No! Don’t get all worked up, there is a simple way to go about that effectively. Check out the audiences that you are part of.
You have interest, you have blogs that meet your needs and understand your struggles. Check out these blogs, you know why? Because it will be easy and better off for you to understand a particular group’s needs if you have been a part of them yourself.
So your target audience might in the end turn out to be people that share similarities with you because you naturally tend to understand their struggles better. They could be in the same age range as you. They could share your likes and dislikes, beliefs and unbelief. Yeah! So once you’ve been able to understand what your audience’s struggles could be, you have succeeded in identifying their pain point.
Sorry to shock you, finding a pain point is not all that needs to be done. You need to zero your niche selection to what pain points your audience will always be ready to pay for?
For example, if you are planning to start a food blog. You should have an idea of who your target audience will be – the food lovers that would mostly have say, people in the 16 – 55 age range and may have most of them to be females.
You can start with putting out a post about a recipe that has another recipe in it. Say, for example, your first post is about “How to make KFC Chicken at home”. One of the necessary recipes for making it is the bread crumb. Your first post does not go into the details of making a bread crumb because you want to give your audience the reason to seek your help.
You can offer say $50 product titled, “Kitchen hack: easy bread crumb recipe”.
Factor 2 – Will your Niche Give Room for Affiliate Marketing?
It drops as a question but it is also an important factor to consider when choosing a niche for your blog. We will refer back to the example given above. A food blog will allow you to engage in affiliate marketing. You can recommend good kitchen appliances to your audiences.
After a particular post, you can have affiliate links to some products that you like to promote and you can earn from everyone that gets to purchase through your link. Say, an air fryer was used to fry the chickens in the above example, you can drop the product affiliate link and for any purchase through the link, you earn.
From the illustration given above, you can deduce that affiliate marketing is the simple act of suggesting services and products of other businesses to your audience via product links and earn through commission on every sale made through the link.
Another question that I am getting from your thoughts is, “How do I get affiliate links for a product or service?” All you need do is to apply for a company’s affiliate program with your website and an email address from your domain. You can either find the link on the company’s website or in an affiliate network.
Upon the approval of your application, you will be able to access an affiliate link that is unique to you alone. This link is what you copy and paste to any portion of the text on your blog that you wish to paste it to.
Website making affiliate commissions from lists posts ranked among the most profitable blogs and this is what you should wish for your blog too and put into consideration before choosing a niche for yourself
Factor 3 – `Keyword Research
People need to be searching for what you want to write about and this is why keyword research is an important factor in choosing a niche. To get traffic to your blog, you need to be writing what people would most likely be found searching for. There are search tools to help you find the type of keywords for your blog.
One such tool is Ahrefs. Once you have an idea of what these keywords are, you should make sure they appear in the bulk of your posts. Those keywords will be the ones serving as the revenue drivers to your blog especially if they come in the form “How to” and” best”
How to Choose a Blogging Platform
Choosing a blogging platform that will best suit your kind of blog from the many available ones is an important one. For the sake of this article which is targeted at beginners, we will recommend that you consider building your blog using the WordPress blog. It is easy to navigate, it is basically user friendly.
Statics has it that WordPress software has about 90% market share in the United States and is therefore considered as the most popular technology. WordPress is a self-hosted blogging platform that allows you to freely set up your blog and run it making use of your domain. WordPress requires you to pay a little fee for the web space every month.
“Are there no free webspace?”. Of course, there are. There is a couple of free space that doesn’t require you to pay any dollar but it is limiting. The free webspace like blogger and Tumblr are free hosted platforms. You will be subjected to their restrictions. An example of such restriction is the inability to make use of your domain.
Before we go on to continue, let’s get you in on the benefits of WordPress.
Why WordPress is Important for Blogging
Flexibility and Adaptability to your blog changing needs – Say, for example when I was signing to the WordPress Webspace, I only had blogging in mind.
Knowing that WordPress was designed to support blogging and other kinds of online publishing well, I bet you will agree with me that I made the best web space choice. Along the line, I develop a new interest and need something more complex.
Like a site that will be able to accommodate the new business, I am starting, hosting a social network or podcast. Instead of creating another site for this purpose, I will simply go on with my WordPress web space because of its endless adaptability to a business’s changing needs.
WordPress sites can very well accommodate full-service eCommerce stores as it is designed to power a range of sites of other purposes.
User-friendly and easy navigation through it – In a matter of minutes and without any technical expertise needed, a WordPress set-up will be completed and the running will begin almost immediately. With a domain name and a web hosting account, WordPress will be installed freely.
The installation can be done either through the WordPress hosting provider or by directly uploading from WordPress.org. Upon installation, the setup process has easy navigation with the provided Admin Dashboard.
The Admin Dashboard comes with all the features you will need to customize your site’s layout and general outlook. It is beginner-friendly as it gives you easy navigation through creating pages and posts.
Ranks High and is Mobile Responsive – WordPress sites rank high for KeyWords search. This is because WordPress is regularly updated and aside from that WordPress comes with a variety of plugins and tools that helps in optimizing content for search engine optimization (SEO). As regards, WordPress being responsive, it offers lots of theme designs that are responsive. With access to plugins and other optimizing tools, users can make a static site responsive.
How to Pick a Domain
You will be known online by whatever domain name you pick. Hence, you must be thoughtful and intentional when picking one for yourself. A domain name is more like your identity online.
It is a unique address for your blog on the internet and it will remain as such for as long as you continue to renew the yearly payment. A domain presents a Uniform Resource Locator (URL) by which you can be located on the internet when typed into your user’s browser address.
The URL also makes it possible for you to be discovered through an engine search say, Google or Bing search. So a blog name that will stand out is the best choice.
The most popular domain is the “dot com” and the rule of thumb is to get a “dot com” domain for your blog. Your domain name may be niche-specific or country-specific, you get to make a choice here.
While trying to choose a domain name, you may not find your choice and you will get a couple of suggestions.
For example, if your domain name of choice is “foodnaija.com” but it tells you that is no longer available i.e. is currently in used by someone, it has been bought. You will get a couple of other domain extension suggestions like foodnaija.org or foodnaija. web or foodnaija.net or foodnaija. blog and you can go ahead to choose from any of them.
On the other hand, if you are keen on getting a “dot com” domain, then you can try to rewrite your domain name in a different way to see if you will have it available in the dot com domain.
Are you still confused about how to pick a domain for your blog?
Hold on do not rush it. It is better to take your time considering your option of a domain name because you do not want to make a bad choice.
Choosing the wrong domain name can affect the success of your blog. Switching your domain name later can hurt your brand and search rankings. So it is best if you choose a good domain name and be ready to stick to it. Check out the highlighted rules to follow in getting one picked out. Feel free to break the rules though. It isn’t a one-way traffic thing.
- It is better to stick with “dot com”
- Use your niche keywords in creating your domain name.
- Avoid long names, keep the domain name short
- It is better to use easy to spell and pronounce words
- Avoid hyphens or other special characters in your domain name
- Keep your domain name unique and brandable
- Avoid using double letters in your domain name, your users might leave one of the letters out when searching for you.
- Do a little bit of research before choosing a domain name
- Make use of tools in your search for an easy and faster domain name generator.
- Immediately go for it when you find it to prevent someone else from owning it.
How to Choose a Web Hosting Services
Upon the completion of step 3 i.e. choosing a domain name, getting a reliable hosting service selected is the next important thing to do.
A blog hosting service determines the performance of your blog site. It is the hosting service that sees to the 24/7 availability of your post to your audience. The hosting service acts as the online store place for your contents and files.
Here is good news for you, a lot of hosting companies will in addition to their hosting service provide you with a free domain for the first year. So when you buy their service, you get a one-year free domain offer.
Do you care to know what choosing the wrong web host can do to your blog? Well, I will not keep you in the dark, read on.
For easy understanding, a web host is to a blog what reception is to a mobile company. A wrong web host can cause your blog a lot of problems and you don’t want to start your blog running into problems that you could have avoided. For the good functioning of your blog site, choosing a reliable web hosting service provider is important.
We will be making our judgement from the information available on the official WordPress website. Bluehost is a top choice web hosting service for a lot of expert bloggers. Name cheap is also one good web hosting service that you can choose from.
There are a lot of hosting services but this article is targeted at blogging beginners and so we will zero the hosting services to the two best alternatives. Bluehost and Name cheap and we will go ahead to explain to you why Bluehost and Namecheap are the best alternatives.
The Bluehost and the Namecheap hosting services can make it into the best alternatives because they are some of the cheap and best host services.
Bluehost Web Hosting Service
Bluehost is popular among beginners and it is just perfect for personal blogs or websites with less traffic. It is considered one of the two best alternatives because
- Most of its plans come with a free one-year domain name.
- There is an offer of a 30-day money-back guarantee on Bluehost
- Bluehost is an official partner of WordPress.org
- In every shared hosting plan, free SSD drives are included
- It offers free Cloudflare CDN and SSL certificates.
- It is very simple to use and cheap
- It is a hosting service recommended for beginners that like to test the waters and learn the ropes
- It offers good customer support.
- Bluehost has a stronger brand and is highly recommended by experts bloggers.
Bluehost can although not be recommended for a big business website or some sort of no-nonsense hosting that is performance-oriented but for a beginner, it is just perfect.
NameCheap Web Hosting Service
NameCheap is also a popular alternative among beginners and is highly recommended. Check out the reasons below.
- Like the Bluehost, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee
- It has an intuitive and beginner-friendly dashboard.
- NameCheap comes with storage, fast cloud servers and storage and free CDN.
- The service comes with an easy backup and restore.
- It manages WordPress hosting very well.
- Namecheap is a domain registrar i.e. you can decide to buy domains name on NameCheap and host your site elsewhere.
- It offers superb cheap services.
- It offers lots of hosting services like VPS hosting, professional email hosting, reseller hosting etc.
- The domain search tool is powerful and also offers SSL certificates
- It offers good customer support through live chat, email and other means.
How to Set Up a Blog on WordPress
This section will do well to explicitly provide all the information you need to sign up for your web hosting account and in the installation of WordPress software. Make sure to not miss out on any of the details. We will be using an example of creating a blog with Bluehost.
Step 1 – Visit The Bluehost Website.
When you have been directed to the home page, go ahead to click the “Get Started Now” button. It is the green button on the home page.
Step 2 – Choose From The Available Hosting Plans.
There is more than one hosting plan on the Bluehost webpage and you will need to select one. This article is targeted at beginners i.e. if you are creating a blog for the first time, so we recommend the basic plan for you. It is the best plan for a beginner.
It can easily be upgraded later to the Plus or Choice Plus plan when you feel you have passed the stage of a beginner and can handle more. Each offers some more features. For example, the Choice Plus plan comes with domain privacy and other features.
Step 3 – Set Up Your Domain Name.
If you have been taken every written line serious from the beginning of the article, you would by now know that your domain name is the eyes of your blog, your blog’s address. We will reiterate, you should not rush out of these steps unless you have taken your time to choose a good domain name that will represent your blog well in searches.
Once you have succeeded in getting for yourself a unique domain name, you should go ahead to type the name in the “new domain” space. Immediately you type it, Bluehost will let you know if it is available. If it is not available, it means the domain name has been bought by someone else and it will show up a list of similar domain names from which you can choose.
If you do not find any of the name’s suggestions amusing, you do not need to force yourself to pick one. You can simply skip the step. You can always go back to picking a domain name once you kick start your blog.
In another case, if you have made the purchase for a domain name in some other sites and you like to retain it. All you need do is type the already purchased domain name into the “Use a domain you own” box.
Step 4 – Register Your Domain Name With Bluehost.
Are you getting worked up already and asking the where what and how questions relating to the registration on Bluehost. Well, you should calm down now because after you have successfully chosen or provided a domain name, Bluehost will direct you to the registration page.
On the registration page, you will be required to provide your personal information manually in the spaces provided for them.
For easier page filling, sign in with your Google account for an automatic personal info filling. Your first, last and business name will be required. You will need to fill in your location details – country, street address, city, state, Zip code, Your telephone number and email address will be required too.
After you are done feeling your account information, Bluehost will at that point require that you select an account plan from the available options on the package information page. Depending on how much you are willing to part with, a 12-month plan is available, so also is the 24 and 36 monthly plan.
The monthly plan you subscribe for will determine how good the deal you will get will be. The longer the time plan, the greater the deal you will be offered.
While you are on the package extra page, be sure to be careful with what extra packages you select. You do not need all the extras, only the essential ones should be selected.
The lesser the extras you select, the lesser the total amount you will be owing. Here is a recommendation from me, while you are at it, make sure to select the Domain Privacy Protection Box. It is a necessary extra as it will do the work of hiding your personal contact information from the global database.
The next thing in the registration process that you need to deal with is the payment information. Provide your payment information – Credit card number, CVV code and Card expiration date. Before clicking on the green “submit” box, make sure to tick the box that asks if you have read and agreed to the terms of service.
Once you have submitted, wait for the confirmation email from Bluehost when your payment is successful. A verification email will also be sent to the email address that will allow you to activate your domain name.
At the end of this step, you should pat yourself on the back because you are more than halfway gone through your blog creation process.
Step 5 – Time to Create Your Account with Bluehost.
The verification email sent to your email address will direct you to the “create your account” page. You will find a blue “create your account” box, click the box and go-ahead to put in your password and complete your account step in the boxes provided upon clicking. Your account is ready for use at this point.
Click on the “Go to login” button and watch as you are redirected to fill the “Email or Domain name” and “password” fields.
Account created, what next? Find out in the next step.
Step 7 – Creating your blog.
After you must have logged into the account. Bluehost will bring up a 4-step process for your blog creation. As a beginner, do not skip the steps but follow them duly for easy blog creation.
To begin the blog creation process, you will need to give answers to 3 questions that you will be asked. The questions are – What kind of site are you creating? What type is it? And Who are you creating a site for?
For example, if your blog is a personal one, the answer to question the first question will be “Blog” the second question’s answer will be “personal” and the answer to the third question will be “myself”. Did you get it? Make sure to give answers to fit your kind of blog.
Here in this step, you will need to what other things you will like to add to your site. Bluehost will give you a few options to select from.
Another step where you need to answer questions. You will be required to give answers to questions like – what do you want to name your site? What is your site tagline? Are you comfortable with creating websites? You can always edit your answers later so just have fun answering the questions.
At the last step, you are allowed to see if you like any of the themes Bluehost chose for you. If you do not like any of the themes, do well to skip the step. You can always come back to it.
Upon the completion of these 4-step processes for your blog creation, you will be directed back to your Bluehost account page. At this stage, be sure of the fact that your WordPress software has successfully installed and your blog structure setting up is completed too.
You Will Need Elementor Website Builder
What Exactly is Elementor?
Elementor is a WordPress drag-and-drop page builder. Using a visual editor, this plugin allows you to create beautiful pages. It is intended to help you quickly create dynamic websites.
This WordPress plugin is an all-in-one solution that allows you to control all aspects of your website design from a single platform. You can personalize your website with motion effects, multiple fonts, and enhanced background images to match your brand.
Why Should You Use Elementor?
Elementor is applicable to all types of professionals on your team. If you are not technically savvy, the visual editor allows you to drag any of the 90+ widgets to create content, such as buttons, star ratings, and more.
How to Install Elementor
Like other WordPress plugins, installing Elementor is quick and simple. There are two ways you can do it.
Installing via Elementor.com
- Go to Elementor.com and click Get Started.
- Since Elementor requires you to have one, you’ll be asked whether you have an active WordPress site. If you do, click Yes to proceed. If not, no worries! Elementor will walk you through the process of creating one. Note: for the sake of this demo, we’ll click Yes.
Next, select the Elementor plan you’d like to sign up for. For this demo, we’ll pick the Free plan.
Benefits Of Elementor Pro Page Builder For WordPress
- Theme Builder lets you customize every part of your theme. With Elementor Pro Theme Builder, you are no longer restricted to your theme limitations.
- Visually design forms and integrate them seamlessly.
- Professional templates and blocks.
- Key professional widgets and features.
Step 8 – Launch your Blog.
In your Bluehost account, you will see the option that allows you to further customize your WordPress blog, you can decide to work on the pre-launch customization or just skip the step and go ahead to click the “Launch my Site” button. Your blog goes live immediately after you click the button.
You should open your website in a web browser to see how it looks. If you are not so loving the look, do not get worked up, it is okay for your blog to not have the perfect look the first time it goes live. What you need to do is to check it out and see what changes you will like to effect.
Get into your WordPress dashboard, apply the changes and do content addition, work on your blog and make it look appear how nicely you want it to.
To get into your WordPress blog dashboard from your Bluehost account, click the blue “WordPress” button in the top right corner of your screen.
How to Select a Good Theme
A good theme will give your new blog the good look and feel that makes your audience want to check your content, To choose a theme on the WordPress dashboard, make sure to
- Read the theme description to have an idea of its features and functionality
- Preview the theme to have an idea of its overall look
- Check the ratings to give you an idea of how good the theme is
You can always change your theme whenever you feel it no longer feels good to you. All of the pages and contents you have created with the old theme you are changing will automatically transfer to a new theme layout. If the free themes do not sit well with you, check out the premium themes but it is sure, not free to use.
Creating a logo is also paramount for the overall appearance of your blog, for the sake of this writing we won’t be able to go deep into that, you should check out our other articles to know the details about this.
To get the overall appearance of your blog, make sure to check how it looks on different devices by using the menu at the bottom with the desktop, tablet and mobile device icon
Another part of making your blog appear greatly is by adding essential plugins to your blog. What are Plugins? Plugins are a bundle of pieces of code that affect the way your site appears and functions. They can add new functionality to your WordPress blog and also extend the capability of the theme.
By default, Bluehost will automatically add some of the plugins they think are important when the blog is being set up. You can however review the plugins added inside the WordPress dashboard and you could also add new ones if you so wish by clicking the Plugins tab on the left-hand side.
The options to delete, deactivate, install or update Plugins are all available. Do well to explore your choices. The majority of Plugins are free and there is a lot that is offered for a fee. Some essential Plugins are MonsterInsights, Yoast SEO, WP Super Cache, Akismet, Contact Form 7, Disqus, YARPP.
We are not done, after you have successfully created your blog, you need to write and publish good blog content. Find out how to go about that below.
How to Write a Good Blog Post
The blog post you write is referred to as content in writing. The only way you can keep your audience glued to your page is by giving them mouth-watering content.
Check Out How to Write a Blog Post Template Below.
- State the main blog topic idea you will be writing about. Recommended title format is to create a numbered title. E.g Three Reasons why Air Fryer is not to be used for cooking frozen foods.
- Give a relateable short introduction. You should be able to establish your audience’s trust and also give a hint to what they should expect to get
- Use descriptive subheadings to replace figure point listing
- Give the execution of the idea in clear but simple terms making sure to drop one or two tips.
Also check out the given blog writing example, as a new blogger.
if I have to publish my first post on my food blog, I will make sure to take the moment to introduce myself to my audience. Telling my audience who I am and what they should expect to read from my blog. The suitable title will be “Welcome to my food blog”.
It is as simple as it sounds. To write good content, you need to bring your passion for the particular niche you are writing into play.
It is not just about writing content, make sure to put up your writing for SEO optimization. Keyword optimization is a major principle for blogging.
Research, select and use keywords that people will most likely type in a web search when they are looking to find information like yours online so that your blog will have a better chance to rank higher in searches and thereby gaining traffic to your blog.
How to Monetize your Blog
- Promote your blog post through other platforms by content republishing, site bookmarking and what have we
- Build your email subscriber list and get in with email marketing: get response
- Get organic traffic from other web search engines
- Run ads on your site and enrol in affiliate marketing programmes
- Sell products and services if any
- Sell sponsored posts
If you had carefully read through every line of this article, you should have no problem navigating yourself through starting a blog as a beginner from the scratch. We wish you the best as you start your blog. We like to know how this article helped you and should in case you have any more questions, by dropping your comments in the section created for it below. Thank you.