The digital journey of every freelancer or entrepreneur begins by finding out the steps and answers on how to start a blog.
The main reason why is because you need to have your own trusted platform online, and fill it with content worth reading. That helps you position yourself as an expert in your niche and be taken more seriously.
It’s also an opportunity for new people to find out about you and your business. And for you to build an engaged audience by publishing different types of content and updating that blog frequently.
While the choices are many as to what tools and softwares to use to create that website, you’ll want to go with the best of the best, as that has given proven results to millions of bloggers already.
But all that you’ll see below isn’t something you’ll need to invest a ton of resources into. In fact, a blog can be started for around $100, as the only thing you’ll really need to pay for is web hosting.
Once you get a hang of it, get clear about your direction and next steps, and receive some initial traffic, you’ll invest more. But in the beginning, you don’t need much money, or experience for that matter.
Let’s see how to start a blog this week, when on a budget and without too much hassle:
There’s a popular saying in the online business world, that goes like this: The riches are in the niches.
A niche is a specific topic that targets a well-defined audience.
You can’t just begin by writing about Health, for instance.
The results you already get for this in search engines are a crazy number.
It’s much more realistic to start small, get some attention, receive organic traffic by targeting specific keyword terms, and then grow from there by writing more generic content.
Let’s see how to start a blog by first defining a good and profitable niche, and one that you truly care about:
This first step is important, so please take your time. You want to have a meaningful site, not to invest a ton of time in something that you’ll give up on in a few weeks or months.
Be in it for the long game. For that to happen, you’ll need to be interested in your niche.
So think about all your hobbies over the years. Remember all the things that moved you, the activities that made you lose track of time, the situations that you still keep in mind to this day because something about them was so special.
It’s never really about the people, or yourself for that matter. It’s about the why behind anything you do. And if you ask that question for all these memories you just recalled, you’ll find out your true passions.
Once you have them written down in front of you, see the big picture. This will help you create a vision for the site.
It’s about what it will look like a decade from now, how it will help people, how it might evolve, how it will help you live the lifestyle you dream about. All that is connected, and begins with finding the right niche.
To know how to start a blog, you also need to know what others in this niche are doing.
Take a look at your competition. They aren’t the enemy. Instead, they can just show you whether there’s still potential in this industry.
Pick something evergreen.
You’re basically validating a business idea now. And that means knowing whether it’s possible to later monetize that blog you’re about to start.
Being passionate about it means you won’t get bored soon and will be able to create a lot of content on the topic.
But picking something that already makes money for other bloggers, is a sure way to have hope for profits. It also proves people are digging that stuff.
Even if many people are doing what you’re planning to do, that shouldn’t bother you. As you’ll provide value in your own way.
Define your unique angle right now. Write it all out.
Think of your experiences in life, your mindset, and all the life lessons you’ve learned. You can apply all that to your writing and make the posts more powerful, personal, and action-oriented.
It’s better to start by creating content around a super small niche for a target audience. Once you get traffic, start covering other subjects related to it.
An example of such a topic, would be ‘tips on how to start an online business for single dads’.
By carefully going through all the points above, it should be easy to now come up with a name for your site and blog.
If you don’t want to always be the expert in your specific niche, then simply set your name as the domain name. This way your blog will be the main element of your brand.
I promised to show you how to start a blog with no experience. So here it is:
The Internet today makes it easier to use a content management system. This is basically an application that takes care of creating, managing and publishing digital content.
The second thing you need is good hosting.
Web hosting is where your site data is stored. The servers of the company take care of whether your site loads quickly, and is always live. So make sure you choose a good one.
You’re basically leaving the maintenance of your website in their hands, so you don’t need to worry whether the server is secure, fast enough, performs well, or shows errors. That’s their responsibility now.
Whenever something unexpected happens, you’ll simply reach out to a member of the support team and let them handle it immediately.
Your job as a blogger is to create quality content and build an audience. Everything else, if left in your hands, can only block your creativity and desire to grow.
Usually, once you find a host you’ll be given easy steps on how to make your site live in a matter of minutes. Together with choosing your domain name, and installing a content management system on it.
Once you do that, you can let search engines know your site is ready for them to crawl it, even though there’s no content on it yet.
You can tackle the dashboard, the back-end, and learn a thing or two about how it works by watching quick tutorials.
You don’t need to hire a specialist, even when your site grows. But it pays off to be curious, and to care about what you do. As then you’ll love learning new things about blogging and running a website, and make small changes to see how it performs.
That was the more technical part. And it too is quick and easy thanks to all the applications we can make use of.
You need to know how to start a blog, because this is the beginning of anything you’ll be doing online and how it can help you build a name for yourself.
Once the site is live, there are a few first and key steps to take. I believe you’ll enjoy these, will feel more professional, and will make it a habit to update them frequently.
Branding is about you and anything you do online. Be sure that the second most visited page on your site will probably be this one, after the homepage.
That’s because people want to see a face behind the platform, and to know more about you.
You might not be comfortable putting up pictures or sharing a lot about you in the beginning, and that’s okay.
But soon you’ll need to do it. You have to put yourself out there if you want to do serious and genuine business, and become known in the niche.
Add a Contact page next. Include all possible ways for people to contact you. You have no idea how many doors this opens up to you.
Get on social media and link to the site from everywhere.
Networking is something you must do frequently, if not all the time. It begins by answering comments on your blog and being available through email and phone. But also by being social on networking sites.
To this day some of the busiest bloggers and entrepreneurs find time to say ‘Thank you!’ to new followers. To send a quick welcome message to those joining their community. Or even ask for feedback before they release a new product.
That’s how you keep in touch with your current audience, and how you reach out to new people, who can potentially be interested in doing business with you.
You know how it feels to enter a site that doesn’t look good. One which has annoying ads and pop-ups, that loads slowly, and with low quality images and unpleasant formatting.
Chances are, you won’t visit it again just because of these elements.
User experience matters more than ever today. And major search engines are aware of this too. That’s why they want you to focus on creating good content, and making it easy to read.
Your site should have easy navigation, with the most important pages in the Menu above. And not too many buttons on a page, as that confuses the visitor.
A good rule of thumb is to always keep things simple. Do that with colors, with having a purpose for any new design element you add.
Often ask yourself whether everything that’s included on the page is necessary. Be okay with removing things often, so that you can only keep what’s essential.
No one likes clutter. The minimalist approach always wins, especially in the design scene.
It’s easier to consume written information when there’s a lot of white space, the font is clear and big enough, and the paragraphs are short.
Also break down text with images, headings, quotes, or else. It keeps the reader engaged and they are more likely to read to the bottom.
Be careful with colors too. These are a big part of your brand, so choose 1-3, and stick to them whatever you do. White space should always be present of course, but colors can be found in the logo, links, headings, or else. They are a nice touch, unless you overdo it.
If you focus on providing value, then you’ll put yourself in the reader’s shoes and will make changes according to that.
After understanding how to start a blog, it’s now time to ask yourself how to write your first blog post.
The best advice I can give you is to simply hit ‘add a new post’ (this should be easy to find when using a CMS).
Then you’ll be given a text editor where you can begin writing and formatting the content, adding images, tags and links, and optimizing it for a keyword.
Build the habit of writing often, though. Even before you optimize and know how to format better.
Once you have 20 or so posts on your topic, start telling others about the blog and make it look and feel better.
It’s alright to change direction a few times, in terms of the language you’re using, your tone, the length of the articles, or else.
Only practice can help you reach the right combination. And, of course, reading a ton of blogs in your industry to see what works.
That’s how to start a blog the quick and easy way, and still do it professionally and let it be the foundation of all your next actions in the digital world.
Being a site owner is a must, but being a regular blogger will lead to so many opportunities. Ones we can’t even predict right now.
The good thing about blogging is that if you’re constant long enough, you’ll start seeing plenty of benefits.
That’s organic traffic and becoming a more authoritative site. A bigger audience and shares on social media. Attention from renowned publications. Readers leaving comments or even emailing you to say they like what you’re doing.
Eventually, that will lead to profits. How you’re going to monetize your site depends on many things, and it’s okay not to have the answer just yet.
Wait till you have some content. Till you build some traffic. And till you’re sure about your direction.
Then you’ll know whether you want to put affiliate links, build a newsletter and promote to the subscribers strategically, create your first information product, promote your freelance services, or build a physical product around your niche and see how it goes.
Over time, you’ll see that a combination of these is a smarter financial decision, as it will diversify your income and you won’t rely only on one income stream.
How to start a blog isn’t the hard part. Unfortunately, many people think it is and never give it a chance. They’re missing out on a lot.
Get a pen and paper, open up your laptop and start doing your research, in order to get closer to defining your niche today.
Then, simply follow the steps listed above on how to start a blog.