Have you wanted to build a profitable blog, but don’t have a clue where to start? There’s no need to search tirelessly for tutorials.
With the right steps in mind, you can be on your way to having a blog that will showcase not only your online presence, but work effectively as an additional income stream.
1. Choose a Niche
This can feel like the most difficult part of the blogging process, but it’s important to establish a niche. It’s common to think that specializing in many things can be more appealing to others, but that’s not always the case. Focusing on a smaller space will draw in audiences who seek specific services.
Do you know everything about building computers? Use that as your niche. For example, an e-commerce copywriter writes for online stores, so this makes them experts in their field. You could have a technology niche such as reviewing computer graphics cards, Chromebooks, or Apple iPhones.
Think carefully about your primary focus; it can determine how many people want to find you, what brands will reach out to you, and how much you can make overall.
2. Research a Reliable Platform
What platforms are best for blogging? When publishing your blog, you want to use a reliable platform with a system that is easy to use, works well with the type of blog you want, and is in line with your budget. If you’re looking for great levels of customization, WordPress is perfect for your needs. There are hundreds of website templates you can play around with.
Squarespace is useful for visual blogs, such as photography, art, or design niches. LinkedIn is another alternative if you want to go the professional route and connect with people in your desired industry. However, if you’re a complete beginner when it comes to blogging or general website building, Wix may be a better choice. Here’s how to build a unique website without coding using Wix.
3. Customize Your Website
Although basic coding knowledge is really helpful, it’s not necessary for building a blog. After signing up for a website builder, choose a template you feel comfortable starting with. You can use a variety of pre-made templates to change existing features and make them your own.
Customize your blog by adding a homepage or an “About You” page with a photo of yourself, a contact page, so people can reach out to you, and of course, a homepage to start blogging. It doesn’t need to be perfect! What matters is that you’ve started piecing it together. However, if you’re struggling with this process, feel free to reach out to a website designer.
4. Publish Your First Post
Writing a blog post for the first time may seem intimidating, but the most important thing is to just get started. Think about what kind of blog topics would work well for your blog; would you like to write guides, written tutorials, recipes, lists, reviews, industry news, current events related to your niche, or just anything you find interesting?
How do you write your blog once you’ve come up with an awesome idea? First, consider what kind of heading will entice someone to read your blog; will it be witty, serious, or state a useful statistic? Secondly, write the way you would talk. Putting your voice and personality into a blog post will not only make it more genuine to readers, but will feel more natural to you.
Thirdly, keep in mind the way you’re laying out your piece; what kind of fonts do you want to use, and are you sticking to the standard US spelling style? Depending on your audience, the formatting will be very different.
5. Create High-Quality Images
Do you click on a YouTube video simply due to the colorful image alone? With blogs, visuals are very important to catching interest. A good quality image can decide whether somebody wants to read through a piece, so you want to make sure it’s high quality.
Think about the standard sizing for your feature images, as well as the photos you’ll use in a blog post. These should be clear, stretched to a pleasing size, and not blurry. Canva is always a great option here. If you’re feeling creative, you can use GIFs too.
6. Maintain Your Website
Have you ever clicked away from a website due to an unexpected page error? Keeping tabs on how your blog is running will determine how many people are viewing or staying on your site. Your site should be running effectively, have no broken links, be updated accordingly, and always be user-friendly.
If you aren’t very tech-savvy, make sure you hire someone who can do the technical work for you. An optimized website is something that always needs to be checked.
7. Take Advantage of SEO
Blog posts may be the main attraction of your website, but incorporating SEO is the main reason behind how you gain clicks, readers, and potential followers. Research the most-used keywords on Google with an SEO tool such as SurferSEO, the latest and popular trends related to your topic, and compare your posts to other blogs that rank higher on Google.
These SEO strategies, over time, can place you higher in search engines. Still confused? Check out some tools that will help you write the best blog titles.
8. Always Network
Networking with professionals within your niche is another useful resource as it can be the main driving force for your blog. Grow your online presence by joining relevant Facebook groups or blogging networks, attending courses to expand on your skills, and connecting with people on LinkedIn who share similar values.
Take note of how to network like a pro. This can be the key to you finding the next follower, or having people refer their audience to your site. It’s a win-win scenario, and it works.
9. Build an Email List
Using an email marketing platform such as MailerLite can do a lot for your blog. An email list is a collection of contact information from people who have signed up and opted to receive emails from you. However, building a reliable email list of clients and followers can take time. It isn’t about the quantity of data added to your list, but the amount of loyalty you have. You don’t want to spam inboxes!
How often are your emails being opened? Are people scanning, or clicking links to your blog pages? Are people sharing your blogs? By tracking these analytics, researching, and being a bit more creative, your email list will be one to rely on. If you’re new to email marketing, have a look at the ways HubSpot can benefit your marketing career. Using this program is a great way to get started.
10. Learn Affiliate Marketing
With affiliate marketing, businesses pay you if your blog refers people to their website or products, so having ads on the sides of your blog isn’t always a bad thing if it benefits both parties.
Not only is affiliate marketing helpful in getting brands and companies to notice you, but you can easily make a few cents per click. If you’re not really sure where to begin this process, there are a range of online resources.
11. Keep Track of Analytics Data
With any blog or website, keeping track of your analytics data is incredibly important to help you become profitable over time. Checking analytics daily will help you figure out where your viewers are coming from geographically, whether you’re being found organically or through social media, information on what keywords are being used on Google in relevance to your blog, and more. This will ultimately boost your traffic.
Start Your Blogging Journey Today
If you’ve been considering starting up a blog, now is the best time to start. Online spaces such as blogging are only growing more and more, and experts in their niche of choice are always appreciated. Creating a successful site definitely takes patience and dedication, but always trust the blogging process. Now you can start your first draft!