Start a WordPress Blog for Beginners

Smart Money
How to start a blog featured

You are looking for ways to earn cash online, and you’ve stumbled upon what appears to be an impossible way to earn…blogging.  It’s become cliche almost that you can make money online writing your expertise or expressing yourself creatively, but the fact remains, yes you can make money blogging!  In fact:

MoneyHax makes money blogging.

Here are just a few other bloggers/publishers that make enough money to call themselves businesses rather than bloggers:

  • Making Sense of Cents
  • Eyeswoon
  • Cash Cow Couple
  • Making Star Wars
  • Super Hero Hype

Why Most Blogs Fail

You may have started a blog before, and it’s gone flat.  The truth is, 90% of blogs typically fail after their first year is done.  Why just a year?

  • Lack of commitment
  • Lack of focus
  • Lack of monetization

MoneyHax is a good example of what it takes to get a blog going.  Why?  We’ve been live for about a year and a half now, and we are now just starting to gain steam.  We knew this is going into the whole blog thing, that’s why we remain to be committed.  Fear not!  If you have experience, expertise, or passion for product blog material you are in the right place!

Start Your Blogging Journey

Don't get overwhelmed
Lot’s of info below!

Step 1:  Pick Something to Blog About

Before buying a domain or hosting, ask yourself this simple question:  What do I know more than others?

If the answer is clear, then you should continue to the next step.  But if you don’t know the answer, or if you have trouble defining a particular niche or category, you will need to find this out first.  Starting a blog requires you to write, consistently, to a particular niche and the audience that follows that niche.  If you like fishing, for example, you could start a blog on different fishing aspects.  Since your audience is defined, you’ll be able to target content towards them.

Once you have your content focus ready to go, you should consider branding your blog with a domain.  There is debate as to whether, a dot com, or dot net, matter in this decision, but the answer is always clear, dot com is still preferred amongst the web since most are already used to typing that in.  If you rely on people going to your website through Google, it wouldn’t matter as much, but if someday you want people to type in your site, a dot-com domain in necessary!

You should buy your domain and hosting together since it makes things easier to get things started.   But before continuing to consider hosting to be the most important aspect of your initial start-up phase.  If you are a blog, WordPress is King and allows customization while also being easy to set up.  Make sure to find a hosting provider aimed at working together with WordPress.  There is an extra cost to this, but it makes it up for faster hosting, which is important for ranking.  Interested in an affordable hosting plan?

Try our partner BlueHost and pay as little as $3.95 a month!

Bluehost Hostings

 

Step 2:  Technical Stuff

Install WordPress easily through BlueHosts CPANEL.  CPANELs are the guts of your hosting plan and have multiple options including:

  • Installing WordPress
  • Adding on Additional Domains (Yes, you can do that!)
  • Adding Email
  • Adding Security Certificates

Assuming you have installed WordPress through an optimized WordPress hosting provider, you may be asking yourself what to do now?  Here are some next steps to consider:

  • Evaluate competitors
  • Find a premium theme from ThemeForest
  • Start writing!

Most businesses fail because of their failure to start, so just start writing about your favorite topics in your niche, the worst that could happen is that your posts will be disregarded if they don’t rank well.

Honestly, we can fill this section with fluff, but one thing you can do to make it easy…ask your hosting support team.  They’ll get you a WordPress site rather quickly, and yes, they are typically available at most times of the day.

Step 3: Monetize The Damn Thing

After you start posting for a few months (yes you’ll need to be consistent),  you should start to consider monetizing your blog.  There are many ways you can do this, but two hands-off approaches can be started immediately.  AdSense through Google is an ad that you insert somewhere into your blog, and it will provide users different ads based on their previous Google searches.  In other words, if you often search for fishing equipment and you land on a personal finance blog, you’ll still see a fishing equipment ad placed on the personal finance blog.

The other method is referred to as Affiliate Marketing.  Essentially, this marketing aspect is referring your readers to specific services or products related to your niche.  For example, if you write about Fishing Rods, you can review a Bass Pro Shop particular product and link them directly to Bass Pro Shop.  If the reader ends up buying the product, you earn a commission.

You’ll need to join an affiliate network to get started with this.  There are, however a multitude of networks offering different merchants.  Not to worry because two innovative companies have given bloggers a great way to include affiliate marketing automatically.

Skimlinks or Viglink.  If approved by their network, which you’ll need a well-ranking blog, you can insert a WordPress plugin that will automatically generate affiliate links for the content you have produced.  These two networks have already partnered up with many of the merchants in your niche, so no need to apply to multiple systems!

We go through Affiliate Marketing a tad more in our 5 Minutes to Learn Affiliate Marketing Post!

Other Monetization Methods

We’ve talked about this term a few times already but are you clear on it?  Here’s the simple meaning:  A Way to Get Your Blog to Produce Money.  Some ways bloggers monetize?

  • Advertising
  • Digital Products
  • Coaching or Tutoring

Here’s why these methods are so darn useful (and popular):  Little to No Overhead

What this means is there is little cost to you to use these techniques including starting a blog compared to other business models.  So if your blog fails, there is little out of pocket expense for you.  However, don’t let this be a factor in your motivation to keep your business growing!

Step 4:  Social and more!

You’ll need to connect with your audience through social networks.  One thing we’ve noticed about Social Networks these days is that it’s vital for your blog’s success if you aren’t necessarily skilled at SEO.  Without a Social Presence or SEO knowledge, your blog will have a hard time going.  Be thorough and get yourself onto these social networks (and be active on them):

  1. Pinterest
  2. Facebook
  3. Twitter
  4. Tumblr
  5. Instagram

Yes, in that order.  According to multiple sites we’ve researched, Instagram rarely helped a blog’s overall success.  In fact, we checked Student Loan Hero’s Instagram page (which was recently acquired for 50 Million Dollars) and there was only a dozen pictures on Instagram.  That being said, it’s your own formula that you’ll have to master.  Believe it or not, no blogger will tell you their exactly formula to success as that’s their competitive advantage.

Want to get started now?  Here’s the options we have!

Hosting:

DreamHost Hosting: $3.95 a month (Includes Domain if you pay for a year)

BlueHost Hosting: $3.95 a month (Includes Domain if you do a year)

Affiliate Network

FlexOffers: Free Sign Up (Need Website with Content to Join)



Comments

  1. Hey, I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest twitter updates. I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

  2. Right now it appears like Expression Engine is the top blogging platform out there right now. (from what I’ve read)
    Is that what you are using on your blog?

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