Exhausted and burnt out from waitressing at a restaurant for the past five years I knew that I needed another way to make an income. My work hours where unpredictable and being in the food industry almost guaranteed that I was working every weekend. I had gone to school for Biology, got my dental assisting certificate, worked as a bank teller, and got my real estate license yet I knew that none of these paths were my passion in life. I have always loved styling, beauty, food & drinks, health & fitness, and most importantly Travel. These were my true interest in life and what makes me the most content, I have always believed in that everyone should chose to live a life they love. I always wanted to spend a good portion of my life traveling and knew I would love to find a career that allowed me to do this.
After doing research online I noticed many different articles saying that blogging could provide a decent income and allow you to live the life you want. For a long time I debated on starting a blog and whether or not I actually had what it takes to be able to create and pull off a successful blog. I have never been very computer savy in my past and feared that I may not have the skills to create a functional and successful blog. Yet I also knew that if I let that fear stop me there than I would never know what could have been.
So I sat down, did the research and decided to give it all I had and put in the work to creating my lifestyle blog. And through this process guess what I discovered? That with some effort it could be done! I’m not going to lie to you and tell you that it was a walk in the park but I am going to tell you that if you truly want to do this you absolutely can and the only person that is standing in your way is you! Now, I had read a lot of articles and some were helpful, some not so much but after enough reading I was able to gather the essential and vital information into how to create a blog. Today I would love to share with you in a straight and easy way how to create a blog by laying out the STEPS for you to follow so that you can have a guide to the most easy way to get started!
This Post may contain affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.
Step 1) DECIDE WHAT NICHE YOU WANT YOUR BLOG TO BE ABOUT
Blogs can be about anything and everything that you want it to be about, there are no rules as to what you can and can’t post about. If you want a blog dedicated to cats playing with yarn than go for it! It can be as narrow and specific as you want or as wide and general as you want. Great news…is that blogs in all niches have the same potential to do well! Whether you focus on just finances, travel, fashion, food or cats playing with yarn, or like me start a lifestyle blog your potential to succeed is all the same! So go after what your passionate about and your blog will reflect that and people will trust you more if they feel you are truly interested in what your blogging about.
Step 2) SIGN UP FOR BLUEHOST FOR DOMAIN & HOSTING
After deciding your niche you are going to want to choose a domain name and get hosting in order to run your site. As far as Domain names go, do not get stuck up on this part. I suggest looking for a name that is easy for others to remember so that when they visit your site they will remember the name if they want to get back to it. Also, the name should be somewhat relevant to your niche in order to not throw visitors to your site off completely.
Next, hosting. I researched a lot to find the best place to register a domain name and hosting and time and time again Bluehost came up as the best place to do this. I am very happy with my choice of going with BlueHost and it is the only one I would personally recommend! Their customer service has been outstanding, they are competitively priced, and their hosting service has been very easy to use for a beginner like me! Bluehost allows you to register one domain name for free with hosting so you already save money there!
Step 3) INSTALL ONE CLICK WORDPRESS
Once you have registered with Bluehost you will be able to login and go to your dashboard and click on: “INSTALL WORDPRESS” (So Easy!) After you click on that icon, click on the green “install” button. Once it has downloaded, enter your domain name. The next step, is to choose a login Username and password as well as your email. After this point your blog is install-ready!
Step 4) PICK AND INSTALL THEME
Ok guys, so when it comes to themes I highly suggest going for a premium theme, they usually cost anywhere from $30.00 and above, but this might be one of the best investments in your blog. Here’s why, when you actually purchase a premium theme there are so many more customization options for you to play around with! This will not only give you more control of your blog but it will allow you to customize your blog more to the way you want it.
WordPress also offers you soo many FREE themes to get you going without having to pay any additional costs. This is a great option for those who can’t afford to make that investment into their blog right now with a premium theme. But, don’t stress you can still find some nice free options as well!
Step 5) CREATE CONTENT
Now its time to create all your fabulous content for your blog! In the beginning you are going to want to create anywhere from 15 to 30 post before officially launching your blog! I know it seems like a lot in the beginning but the reason why its so important to do this is because when people view your blog for the first time you have to provide them with enough content to decide if they would be interested in coming back to your blog. That is also why it is so important to only publish high quality content! People are going to be basing their decision on what they see when deciding if they should revisit your site or subscribe to your mailing list!
STEP 6) CREATE SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS FOR BLOG
It is very important that you create your social media accounts with your blog name right away to ensure that they don’t get taken. In case they are already taken consider putting a period or dash symbol to still get something close to your blog name. Social Media accounts are very important for marketing purposes and also to build a sense of community in the blogging world. The social Media accounts you might want to consider are: Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
STEP 7) SIGN UP FOR AFFILIATE MARKETING
You may think that its too soon to start signing up for affiliate marketing but to be totally honest with you its never too soon to start. From my experience and other bloggers that I have talked to it is very helpful to start using affiliates on your site from the beginning if you want to make money blogging. As you grow and people start viewing your blog you will start to make money by having affiliates already in place.
A few to consider:
Amazon Affiliates: By Far the most popular affiliate program around is Amazon. Amazon has everything under the sun as far as products go and the credibility of Amazon works to make this a great affiliate to partner with. They start commission at 4% but you have potential to make more as you get more referrals. No matter what your niche is you will be able to find products to recommend on your site!
AWIN: AWIN is an amazing affiliate network that gives you access to some of the best known brands out there (Hyatt, Fiverr, and including ETSY…which is huge!)! No matter what your niche might be (Lifestyle, Travel, Finance, Fashion, etc.) you can definitely find brands to work with! They do cost an initial upfront cost of $5.00 to sign up, but don’t worry you do get this back completely as soon as you receive your first payment. This affiliate network is the one that I recommend the most! Click here to join AWIN
AirBnB: This is a cool one for all you travelers out there, as a great alternative to staying in hotels you can stay at Airbnb when you travel! With their referral program you can offer your readers $40 in travel credit. After they book their first trip, you get $20 of travel credit! This can add up quickly allowing you to travel for less more often! Click here to get started with AirBnB and receive credit
STEP 8) SIGN-UP FOR GOOGLE ADSENSE
If you want to make money from advertisements your best bet will be from google adsense (Google’s ad service) in the beginning! Before you apply you want to make sure you have some good content on your blog because they can be a little picky as to who they accept and if you don’t have any content on your blog your application will take longer to get approved! They are great for blogs who are just beginning, they will display ads on your site for people to see, and when those ads are on your blog then you will start to generate income from them.
STEP 9) USE PINTEREST TO BOOST YOUR TRAFFIC
Once you have created a great blog full of all your amazing content your next step is to get people to come view your blog! This part can take some time, so be patient in the beginning! Most bloggers and myself included, get the majority of our traffic from Pinterest! You are going to want to get a business account (you can change your personal account into a business account!) and start pinning in order to grow your traffic! You will want to get on group boards where you can increase the views your pins are getting, this is extremely important! Don’t be afraid to ask people to join their group boards because the worst you will get is a no and those times you get a yes will be worth it!
STEP 10) HAVE FUN AND KEEP LEARNING
Remember that blogging success will take time and patience in the very beginning so have fun with your blogging journey! Hopefully you have chosen a niche that you love to talk about so that blogging will be something you enjoy doing! Also, remember to continue to keep learning! What does this mean?! Do your Research! Look at what other successful bloggers are doing and take notes! They are successful for a reason. Also, be open to feedback from others as to how to improve your blog and get connected with other bloggers…Facebook Blogger Groups are great for this!
I really hope that this guide provided you with useful and easy to follow steps to create your blog! If you have any questions or comments at all please drop a comment below!