In a hurry?
Here's a Quick Start Guide to Blogging. Simply Click on the Step to Jump to the Section!
- Choose a Blogging Niche or Topic for your Blog
- Buy a Domain and Hosting for Your Blog- BLUEHOST (Recommended)
- Install Content Management Software like WordPress as your blogging platform
- Choose the Best SEO Friendly Theme for your Blog- ASTRA (Recommended)
- Customize your new Theme to Win the Heart and Mind of the Audience
- Install WordPress Plugins to improve performance
- Install Google Analytics and Google Search Console
- Create and Publish Your First Blog Post
- Market Your Blog with Best SEO Practices
- Build Your Subscriber Base and Audience
- PRO TIPS FOR BLOGGING
- MONETIZE YOUR BLOGGING WEBSITE
Introduction to How to Start a Blog for Free
With the emerging trend, the blogging industry has very high potential. Bloggers are making from $2000 to more than $500,000 every month. Blogging awards you not only with money, but you earn a name and fame in the whole world. People start knowing you and your work as a celebrity. You become an influencer whose informing blog posts help thousands and millions of audiences.
You must be thinking that if any industry has so many things to offer, then would it be easy to achieve these benchmarks mentioned above?
The answer lies within you! Successful blogging needs only three things:
- Patience and
- Corrective Measurements.
More than 70% of bloggers failed in the early stage, and they quit within six months to 1 year. Either they become inconsistent, lose patience, or choose the wrong blogging niche, hosting, theme, and lousy marketing strategy.
Here you will learn a step by step guide on how to start a blog and get paid. This content has been created after an in-depth study, research, and opinion of the world’s 35 successful bloggers.
Let’s dive deep into it and leave with no mistakes to make your blogging journey successful.
Choose a Blogging Niche or Topic for your Blog:
Choosing a blogging niche or topic is the first thing that should come to your mind. You can not succeed in blogging until you have a passion, experience, or knowledge about that topic.
Many bloggers quit their blogging in 3 to 6 months as they pick up the wrong niche. If you choose a blog topic that you are not passionate about, what do you think, for how many days or months can you write and publish content?
Pro Tip: While choosing a blogging niche, knowledge, passion, or experience are not enough to make millions and succeed. Not all blogging niches are making money. You should do good research on the monetizing channel and its competition.
Once you choose the right blogging topic based on
- Your passion, knowledge, or experience
- Competition analysis, and
- Monetization and revenue channels
Then you are done with your first and very critical step. It will make you hustle free and boost your morale and patience. Otherwise, many bloggers keep changing their blogging niches every 3-6 months. And they get irritated and stop blogging.
Buy a Domain and Hosting for Your Blog:
A domain name is the name of your website. Your website gets recognition on the world wide web, including social media and search engines. [For example, Ours is theblueoceansgroup.com].
Without a domain name, you can not start your blog.
How to see if your selected domains are available?
I prefer to use Bluehost’s domain name checker. Type below each potential name in one at a time to see what’s available.
Once you check the availability, now, select and book your blog name, by which no one can steal your blogging name.
Pro Tips for Choosing Domain Name
- Your website’s domain name should be short and straightforward, with a higher recall value. It should not contain more words and not be tricky to pronounce. Simple domain names are easy to memorize, market, and start word of mouth publicity.
- The highly recommended length of your domain should not exceed more than 14 characters.
- I always prefer choosing .com. It is the easiest one for people to remember. You can also go with .org or .net in case if .com is not available.
- Avoid using numbers, hyphens, and homophones. It will hurt your user experience and brand badly.
Note*: Low-quality domains will usually go for a few thousand dollars. Highly quality domains that are two words can easily go for $10,000 to $50,000. Sometimes you want a domain that is already existing, in such a case, you can find a owner of the domain ( from who.is), even negotiate with them and can purchase, but this process ends up taking enough time+money.
But I highly suggest you buy a web host that allows you to register a domain for free. That means going with BlueHost (Plan includes Free Domain for 1 Year)
Can I choose my blog name as a domain, such as neilpatel.com?
Well, it has its pros and cons. If you want to start a personal blog, then it is better to use your name in the domain.
If you want to establish a brand, choose the domain name related to your niche. You can expand your blogging brand globally. For example, travel websites like Your Travelling Story, Wanderlust, Booking.com have their domain names related to the travel niche.
Moreover, if you want to sell your website in the future, then the domain with your name will have less value and be very difficult to sell. People would not buy it. The domain names related to niches can quickly be sold above the market value.
Buy Best Web Hosting for your Blog– BLUEHOST (Recommended)
Web hosting is the online storage for your site where visitors can access and read your blogs.
In 2021, the best web hosting site depends on many crucial factors such as domain name, support system, free SSL Certificate, CDN. Your blogging website’s other influencing factors are Speed, Uptime, and Response Time. When an individual gets the perfect combination of these mentioned factors, there is a feeling of Value for Money.
By 2021, Google has come up with thousands of updates and new algorithms. Due to this, the industry standards are more refined than ever before. Your server’s geographical location is an essential aspect of maintaining your website’s speed and latency. Your server location has a direct correlation with load time for your audience.
We went through all the main hosts for WordPress sites (by far the best tool for blogging) and put together our recommendations here. The guide specifies based on requirements if you are a beginner, you have an affordable budget, you have a small business, you are a pro user or expecting very high traffic, etc.
But really the choice boils down to only one option: BlueHost
BlueHost fits all your needs that is popular, trusted, easy to use, reliable, provides you 24×7 support, and reasonably priced. The best part is that its plans start at $2.95/month (when using our discount link).
For the vast majority of people starting blogs, BlueHost is going to be the best choice for hosting their blog. So, you can close your eyes and book your web hosting right here (the best part is, you get free Domain for 1 Year along with Hosting)
If you’re just starting out as a beginner/small business and would like to go very affordable, yet reliable web hosting, BlueHost is perfect.
Why should you always choose paid web hosting?
- You get all the crucial factors that are mentioned above.
- Web hosting impacts your website’s performance, security, scalability, and management level.
- You get access to unlimited bandwidth, space, and email accounts.
- With a single click, you can install any plugin (automatic installation).
- 100% money-back guarantee with no question asked.
- 24*7 customer support system from technical and subject matter experts.
- You can monetize your blogging website and make 100X more money in less than one year.
Why You Must not Choose Free Hosting Services?
- Limited Server Resources.
- Low and inconsistent performance.
- No technical support.
- If any plugin is not working or your site has 404 errors, then no one is for your help.
- Frauds and Scams (they will offer you free hosting for 3-4 months) and then, will ask for massive renewal fees.
That’s why the experts’ opinion is a BIG NO to free web hosting. It is complete garbage that can only ruin your blogging journey and give pathetic users experience.
Click here for a step-by-step guide on how to create a website.
Install Content Management Software like WordPress as your blogging platform
When you start your professional blogging journey, you need robust content management software to create, arrange, and post your content. More than 35% of the world’s websites are on WordPress CMS. It is perfect for all blogging activities, such as posting all content on a website, scheduling blog posts, doing SEO, and other marketing stuff.
WordPress is suitable for all business types, from blogging to e-Commerce websites, from the media industry to content marketing. Creating and launching your website on WordPress is 100% free.
Most web hosts offer a one-click installation for WordPress. It’s super easy and go-to platform for most of the bloggers/businesses here.
Other popular and award-winning content management software (CMS) are;
- Drupal, and
Steps to Install WordPress
Once you purchase Hosting. Let’s take Bluehost as an example as it is always super easy and the best.
- Log into your Bluehost account.
- Open My Sites on the left side menu.
- Click on Create Site button at the upper right corner.
- Enter your blog’s name and tagline. (If you want to set Username/Password Select Advanced and fill in the details) Click Next.
- Choose the domain you want to install WordPress on.
- Choose the directory you want to install it on. Now, Click Next.
- And it’s installed!
To open your WordPress Site after installation. You can open a site by entering domainname.com/wp-admin in URL section
Choose the Cheapest and Best SEO Friendly Theme for your Blog
You must select a perfect theme for both the designing and SEO marketing front. But due to a lack of knowledge and experience, most bloggers make a blunder in choosing the wrong theme. They pick up free, spammy, or crack versions of any theme to save a few dollars. And they end up creating a whole mess. Website suffers from ranking, traffic, and conversions. It fails to establish presence and brand visibility.
Any professional blogger or website owner should not make this blunder. A premium theme is the most critical thing in a successful blogging journey.
Even in my blogging journey, I gave less importance to the theme and picked up the casual one. When the theme started negatively affecting my blogging results, we started migrating out the whole website on a new free theme. Again we made a blunder and chose the wrong theme. Then our team started doing in-depth research on a theme by considering every aspect of designing and marketing. Finally, we got the best and all-time popular theme, Astra that helps us design amazing website architecture, a website with automatic mobile optimization, pop-ups, SEO-friendly site, and marketing channels.
Steps to Add your Theme to Website
After you purchase your theme (as low as $174 for Lifetime with my discounted link), simply log into your WordPress website. Under Appearance in the WordPress sidebar menu, click on Theme. Now, search Astra in search bar and Activate Astra Theme.
Download Astra Pro Add On Plugin and Premium Starter Templates from your Astra Account and Install in your website under Plugins section. You can find the upload option by going to Plugins > Add New, a button towards the top. Then you’ll see this option to upload:
Now, you can either start fresh or even select Pre-Built Website and customize it to save your time and efforts. I prefer selecting Pre-Built Website as it is almost ready and we can customize it completely as per our requirement and wish. Go to Appearance > Starter Templates and select your template.
Customize your new Theme to Win the Heart and Mind of the Audience
Now it’s time to make your website beautiful. You can customize the website design to match your blogging niche and user experience. You’ll be able to manage any themes you’ve uploaded to your WordPress website from your Themes section or Appearance> Customize Section
Essential things you need to upload and take care of while creating a website on the customized theme:
- Make the identity of your blogging website by uploading your brand logo, tagline, and site icon.
- Choose a decent theme color for the background, header, and footer to match your blog topic. You can also upload any custom background image for your blog.
- You can also customize the blog menu, social media links, and icons. Also, customize your website’s footer by adding highlighted links, content, and how to find you if you have a physical location.
To Create and Customize your website with Astra Theme, Click here for a Step-by-Step guide.
Also, click here to know how a theme affect website ranking, traffic, and user experience.
Install WordPress Plugins
Plugins are the small batches of software that gives you more features. You need not be a coder or technical expert. One plugin can solve many issues without coding.
The most crucial reason for WordPress popularity is you can customize infinitely as per your business needs.
WordPress offers many plugins for free; hence, bloggers install hundreds of plugins.
But here is an issue!
If you install unnecessary plugins, issues arise in your website in lousy loading speed and pathetic user experience. Apart from these issues, it becomes difficult for you to maintain those hundred plugins. It needs regular up-gradation or updation.
Smart marketers and website owners install minimum possible plugins on their website (less than 15). We use only 10 WordPress plugins for my blogging website.
Here is the list of my favorite plugins that I use;
Every website needs an SEO plugin automatically to handle and perform various SEO activities such as keyword research and on-page SEO. Other highly used and recommended SEO plugins are Yoast SEO and All-in-One SEO plugin. You can choose any of them. I started using Rank Math SEO plugin as it offers many SEO features for free that I was paying in Yoast SEO.
When you start blogging, you will notice that you are getting hundreds of spam comments. To prevent your website from malicious activities and protect it from malpractices, you need a plugin like Akismet to filter a ton of comment spam automatically.
Contact Form 7:
Every professional website has a contact us page from where your audience can land and reach out to you with queries. Contact Form 7 is one of the most popular contact form plugins. By using Contact Form 7 plugin, you can create a contact form. You will get an email when anyone lands on your contact us page and fills out the form.
WP Super Cache:
Bloggers use WP Super Cache to make their website load speed light. WP Rocket is another popular plugin to speed up your site’s load time.
The success of almost every blogger or business lies in its subscriber base. You can not leverage your email marketing strategy until you do not have a subscriber base.
MailChimp plugin helps you to create an email sign up form. The moment people subscribe to your website, it automatically collects their details such as name, email id, profession, and company name.
WordPress Popular Posts:
Every blogger produces a few blogs in their life that become viral or very popular. So, they want to showcase these popular blogs on their website. WordPress Popular Posts plugin automatically adds a list of your most popular posts to your blog sidebar. Apart from this, it updates your list automatically.
Install Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a free website analytics and user behavior reporting tool from Google. It allows you to get insights on:
- See how many people are visiting your website
- See the time that users are spending on your site
- Find the demographic info of your visitors
- See what blog posts and pages are receiving the most visits
- See how many downloads, what are the external link clicks performed by users
- and many more!
You can analyze each activity of a user- (For this it requires extra setup in analytics and tag manger)
This can get complicated, very quickly. Therefore, we’re going to ignore the majority of what’s in Google Analytics for now. All you need to do is create a Google Analytics account and install it on your website.
Step-by-step Guide to setup Google Analytics:
- Login to Google Analytics, by signing into your Gmail account (prefer using your business account).
- Create your Google Analytics Account, will providing your Account Name- Your Website/Business Name. Then, Click on Next
- Choose what you want to measure: Web, Apps or both. Choose web, since you are creating a blogging site. Click on ‘Next’
- Fill in the details about your website including its name, URL, industry category, and timezone. Now, Click on ‘Create’ button.
Once you paste your code, Google Analytics will start collecting data for you and you can track each visit now!!
Install Google Search Console
GSC is a free platform to monitor how Google views your site and optimize its organic presence. This includes viewing your referring domains, mobile site performance, rich search results, and highest-traffic queries and pages, and more.
It is straightforward to add your website to Google Search Console, it just takes a couple of steps.
Steps to add GSC to your website
- Sign into your Google account. Prefer using your business (not personal) account (same as Google Analytics).
- Go to Google Search Console.
- Click ‘Add a property’ under the search drop-down.
- Choose ‘Website’ from the drop-down menu and enter the URL of your site. Make sure you enter the exact (complete) URL that appears in the browser bar and then, Click ‘Continue’.
Note*: If your site supports both http:// and https://, add both as separate sites. You must also add each domain (for example, theblueoceansgroup.com, hosting.theblueoceansgroup.com, and www.theblueoceansgroup.com).
- Google provides multiple ways of getting your site verified and they even suggest adding multiple ways because of security. Here, pick a way to verify you own your website (HTML file, domain name provider, HTML tag, Google Analytics, or GTM container).
To make it easy enough, you can add HTML tag- authorization code to your SEO Plugin (Rank Math, Yoast SEO or All In One SEO)
- Copy the meta tag and paste it under the webmaster tools section in your SEO Plugin. Now, Save the changes.
- Go back to Google Search Console and click ‘Verify’.
With this, You’ve connected your website to Google Search Console! Now that you’ve verified and linked your site, submit your sitemap for the google to index your website/blogs quickly- here’s how.
Create and Publish Your First Blog Post
Now you are all set with a perfect blogging website and essentials. Now, you create and post your first blog on your website.
You choose the title for your article in the Title Area.
Then, you upload and embed some visual content like photos, gifs, videos, or infographics from the Add Media section.
Next, in the content area section, you write and upload your main content body in text format.
Now you are ready to publish your content and take your post live to the world.
Publishing a first blog post on your own website always gives a fantastic feeling. You enjoy it as a proud moment and a new journey of your life.
Suppose your blogging niche is online marketing. Then you can create relevant categories such as SEO, SMM, Email Marketing, PPC to give a clear understanding of your users. This way, search engines like Google will also better understand your website and its architecture.
Market Your Blog with Best SEO Practices:
Now, it’s time to let the world know about you and your work. One of the best ways to market your blog is search engine optimization (SEO).
Those who are new to SEO, let me give you a better understanding of this term.
It is an organic method of ranking your blog posts on search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
There are 6 significant pillars and essential parts of SEO that you need to perform;
- Keyword Research and On-Page SEO
- Off-Page SEO (Link Building is a core part of it)
- Technical SEO
- Local SEO
- Mobile SEO
- Global/International SEO
SEO is a long term consistent effort. And as a blogger, you can never earn a wider reach, a vast audience base, and money without SEO. The easiest way to increase your website’s traffic, ranking, and revenue is to follow my step by step SEO strategy.
Important Note: SEO is my expertise. Along with my team, I prepare the best SEO practices that work in real-time. My SEO hacks can boost your site’s ranking, traffic and help you to generate millions of dollars every month. I have created in-depth SEO research, guide, tips, and strategies. Here, you can get access to all my premium content. It is 100% exclusive and free for my audience. You can also hire my SEO expert team for you and me. Within 6 months, you will see exponential growth in your traffic, ranking, and revenue.
Opt other marketing channels and promote your Blogging Website:
To make your blogging journey smoother and more effective, do not depend on SEO only. Other highly effective marketing channels can hook your site’s performance.
Other effective marketing channels are;
- PPC Ads (Google and Bing Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads)
- Email Marketing (One of the most effective marketing channel; perfect for B2B business)
- Social Media Marketing
- Quora, Pinterest, and Reddit Marketing
- Influencer Marketing
If you want a success early, using tools like Semrush will help you achieve this goal. It is the All-In-One tool for SEO, relation building, Content Marketing and Email-Outreach Marketing. (Get 7-Day Free Trial from Semrush)
Build Your Subscriber Base and Audience:
Always remember, your subscriber base and Audience determine the size and altitude of your blogging website. And the number of subscriber and reader base is directly correlated with your website’s revenue and brand visibility.
Hence, it is become necessary to make an effective strategy that can work on both fronts of blogging;
#The 1st blogging front is Content.
#The 2nd front of blogging is Marketing.
Initially, for 3-6 months, you need to focus more on the content part. But once you have enough content on your website, your strategy should focus on marketing.
The ideal percentage and best blogging strategy is
i) Focus 30% of your time, efforts, and resources on creating high-quality, unique content, and
ii) Focus 70% of your time, actions, and resources on marketing stuff such as SEO, PPC, SMM, and email marketing.
Pro Tips and Strategies on Content Front:
- Post at least one blog every week. Never skip even a single week.
- It is better to post 2-3 articles in a week.
- Never compromise the quality of your content. It must be original and updated to deliver value to your audience: no copy paste and plagiarized content.
- Always focus 100% quality over quality. Do perform better than your competitors. You need not produce more than 3 content in a week by compromising quality. News websites are exceptions.
Pro Tips and Strategies on Marketing Front:
- Perform the best SEO marketing strategy
- Run PPC ad campaigns
- Leverage social media marketing channels
- Join online communities like Facebook groups, Quora groups, slack, subreddits, and Pinterest to boost your traffic and engagement.
- Expand your website presence with brand partnerships, collaboration, and influencer programs.
Start Monetizing your Blogging Website and make massive money from Blogs:
Once you have set up your website, published enough content, and started getting traffic through different marketing channels, it’s time to make money from blogging.
The primary sources of making money from blogging and converting your traffic visitors into dollars are;
- Generate Money from Google AdSense
- Other Ad Networks
- Selling Ads, Native Advertising
- Affiliate Marketing
- Being an influencer
- Create and sell your digital product or service
- Offering other freelance services to more prominent brands
- Create and sell an online course, eBooks, or industry Reports
Conclusion on How to Start a Blog:
I hope you enjoyed the piece on how to start a blog business or how to start blogging. There is no doubt that blogging is an excellent carrier option.
When you start blogging, you work for yourself and chase your goals or dream. In blogging, you need not be a slave or work under any boss.
As far as a name, reputation, or money is concerned, every professional blogger has an excellent society reputation. People treat them like a celebrity. That’s why many professional bloggers are also known as celebrity bloggers and influencers.
Any average blogger can earn any amount from $2000 to $5000 every month. Professional bloggers earn from $5000 to $20,000 every month, whereas celebrity bloggers earn $20000 to $500,000 per month.
So, if you have passion, patience, and an elegant working style, no one can stop you from becoming successful bloggers.
So, what are you waiting for!
Everything that you need to get started is here. Invest some dollars to buy your web hosting and free domain from Bluehost (suggested) in just minutes. Choose and buy the best theme from Astra (suggested) and install WordPress CMS for your blog for free. That is all.
To get 67% off, you can grab hosting and free domain for just $2.95 from my discounted link.
Once you book your blog name and buy hosting, then you are all set to start your new journey with blogging. You can start blogging along with your job or full time.
Be it blog writing, Google AdSense approval, affiliate marketing, SEO, marketing, or any other blog promotion; I am here to guide you. You can access all my premium content for free and learn everything about blogging.
If you have any suggestions or opinions, leave a comment below. Even if you have any queries that I did not answer, do not hesitate to ask. I almost reply to every comment as soon as possible.
FAQs About How to Start a Blog or How to Start Blogging:
Blogging does not require massive investment like any other offline or online business. Almost everything you get free, from the world’s best content management software, WordPress, to essential SEO plugins. Even if you buy web hosting from Bluehost hosting, your blog name/domain is also free. You need to spend less than $3 to buy hosting for your WordPress site and a few more dollars in purchasing the world’s best theme Astra. That’s all!!!
As I mentioned above, blogging does not require a considerable investment, as you get almost everything free. You can quickly start a blog with an annual investment of $45, including all operating and investment costs.
It is entirely up to you. On average, a blogger takes 4-6 months to make decent money from blogging ($500-$2000 every month). If you are a full-time professional blogger, then only in 2 years you can start earning more than $10,000 every month.
Is blogging dead, or Is blogging still profitable in 2021?
Yes! There is no doubt that blogging is still profitable in 2021. Blogging is an evergreen billion-dollar industry and can not be dead. People who start blogging in 2020 are making thousands and millions of dollars. Of course, the blogging competition is higher than it was to be before 2016.
You can buy a free domain and get up to 67% off on your hosting with Bluehost. Bluehost is the most popular and cheapest WordPress hosting, and CMS WordPress highly recommends Bluehost. You can then read my step by step guide on creating a WordPress site for your blog.
Just follow these easy hacks to start a blog. Even if you are not a technical expert, you can start a blog. To start a blog, you simply need to buy a blog/domain name, hosting, content management software like WordPress. That’s all! You are ready to publish your first blog post. There are no rocket sciences to start blogging. You only need consistency, quality content, and SEO marketing hacks. And you can learn everything about blogging by reading my blogs and premium marketing content. It is 100% free for my subscribers and readers.