This post is going to be one of my longest, but it's worth it. I apologize in advance.
NOTE: If you are someone that has a wordpress.com at the end of your blog, this is worth reading and something that I think that you should consider doing FOR SURE. Being self hosted is one of the best decisions that I could have made profressionally because if you are allowing that line on the end of your blog, you won't be able to host any ads on your page.
I have about 600 posts that I want to make right now about blogging and how to help you guys but I want to keep the theme of my blog very consistent with what it is sprinkling in blogging blogs along the way to help you succeed. I will get to all of the other stuff soon. But first, you have to start with the basics. I made an entire tab of my blog on this topic (you may have already seen that and I'm going to add some extra little tips in this one) so I'll keep that there and will continue to add all posts there as this expands. I normally don't blog on Saturday's but I'm thinking if I can get one of these blogging posts made during the week then I could do a Saturday blogging post each week and maybe on a double post day if I'm feeling crazy! ;) Topics to be discussed:
- How to grow on Instagram
- Different routes to blogging success designed towards you
- How to use pinterest for blog traffic
- How to increase blog traffic
- All of the possible ways to monetize your blog
- How to convert a sale on your blog
- Non tacky ways to collaborate
- Different companies that link bloggers & companies
- Unwritten rules of blogging & instagram etiquette
First, DO NOT (I repeat DO NOT) let yourself become overwhelmed. Blogging is A LOT OF WORK. It is some of the most rewarding work you can do and I absolutely love it, but you will be putting your heart and soul into this and typically the amount of time you put in is a direct reflection of how well your blog does and looks. I KNOW mine is not the best-I have so much work to do- and you will always feel that way but take it one day at a time doing what you can each moment.
Some of the best advice that I heard was to pick 2 bloggers that talk about how to blog and none of the others, and that was such a blessing to hear that. There are seriously probably 5000 different ways that you can make blogging work for you and make it into a full time job however you have to make it your own, and you don't need to focus on a million different ways but simply YOUR way. Let's get to the fun part. This blog I'm going to include the FULL write up with pictures. It's not that much, and you guys know how to create profiles but I'll walk you step by step.
Let's get rolling ! (This is going to have more and more information as this blog content gets rolling and you may have already seen part of this on my blog already but keep reading. There's more step by step here)
How to Create a Successful Blog
1. PICK YOUR TOPIC
As always on social channels, you need to have a theme or a niche of your blog. I wish I was more niche, but I'm just too ADD for that. I like fitness but I also like life and food and all of those things combined are what this blog is. However, if you are passionate about one topic, that's golden and you need to stick with that. This will help you with #2.
2. PICK YOUR DOMAIN NAME
One of the biggest things is that whatever you choose to be your name, it needs to be something that you can carry across all channels so that people can find you on google very easily. As you know, I'm katiesfitscript on just about every channel there is. I'm glad I still like that name, because it could be something like "glitterrunningprincess" or something crazy and then that would be tragic. Pick carefully my friends because when you grow, you don't want to have to restart with a new name.
There are many different places that you can purchase a domain. I was really confused about this at first. Do I purchase my domain along with my blog or do I purchase my domain separately and then sign up to do blogging? The answer is that you can do either, but I just suggest registering for your domain whenever you sign up on the hosting website to blog, and that way it's all right there together. Go daddy is probably the biggest one if you just wanted to purchase the domain by itself.
But what if you don't want to purchase the domain, and just want a freebie? You can do that, but as you'll see, that leaves the "blogname.wordpress.com" at the end of your blog, and I just learned very early that this doesn't look as professional as just having the site as your own. It's like $15-20/year so really, just buy it. However, I will get to the hosting process below but you can do a free one through Bluehost, so that's what I would do. I'll explain bluehost below.
3. PICK YOUR HOSTING SITE (self hosted or not)
What is a hosting site you ask? Good question! These are the sites that you hear of like Blogger and Wordpress. Wordpress.com and Wordpress.org are different. When you are tryin got figure out how to start a successful blog, I recommend Wordpress.org that you can get through bluehost (again, explained below) because the wordpress.com is not going to be self hosted and you are going to have to leave that tag line (.wordpress.org) on the end of your blog.
If you are wanting to make this something that you can monetize eventually then you really should just go ahead and be self hosted. You can't advertise on your site if you are not, and it just takes A LOT of shifting and A LOT of work on the back end, so my suggestion is to go ahead and start with self hosted. The website that almost all bloggers will recommend for that is going to be Bluehost.
If you click here, this will take you directly to the website, which will be through my affiliate link which will also get you a few additional perks for signing up through my code (Thank you as always!).
I'm going to make every image clickable to that site, but I'm going to walk you through the steps of using bluehost and setting up your own website. It charges you for the year upfront, so just be prepared for that monthly amount to be multipied by 12. If you go ahead and decide you want to do this for the long term, the 36 month program is going to be the cheapest for you. I really REALLY think that making a blog is an investment and even if you are just doing it for the pure enjoyment and not trying to monetize, it makes it look so awesome when you can have your own domain, easily set up a beautiful design, and then not have to worry about switching over in the future when you take off in blogger world!!! :) I tell everyone I come into contact with in my small town.... "If you want to do this, I'll show you how. Anyone can do it with a little bit of elbow grease and patience!" You should be able to get this pricing schematic listed below by signing up through my blog.
As I stated above, if you have already picked your domain name or whether you are going to start and do that for free with your program through bluehost, this is where it will ask for that information.
At that point, it will ask for some general information just like most websites to create your account.
This is where you pick your plan next. I really do recommend the 36 month plan because if you are genuinely wanting to do well with blogging and taking this seriously then this is going to be something that takes TIME TO BUILD so stick it out and you WILL reap the rewards. I promise every day is worth it as things get larger and larger because that's how internet marketing and online business works.
The next few steps are pretty self explanatory but I'm going to include all of the photos because I know that most of the time you don't get to see the insider of what you will be led through until you purchase so this allows you to do so and makes sure that you know what decision that you're making is a good one! :) You'll see that it asks for your billing info, choosing a password, and then logging in.
Once you are logged in for the first time, you will be on your dashboard and then you want to install wordpress to your dashboard. The dashboard will look like the first picture and then you will click on "Wordpress" then "Install WP"
It will ask you to enter in your information for your blog specifically in which you are installing wordpress for, and then you are set.
You will be on your official dashboard at that point and be able to create your first blog post. If you've been with wordpress.com in the past, you'll see that the format is the same and it's one that is very user friendly. Let me know if you have any questions about bluehost or the process at all, and I'd be more than happy to help.
Hope you enjoyed this tutorial on how to start a successful blog, and I look forward to sharing more tricks with you in the future!