Over the last few years, blogging has changed a great deal. What used to be a hobby limited to a small number of people has transformed into a professional money-earning activity. With the right attitude and strategies that work, you could make a lot of money from blogging.
Professional blogging is an outstanding medium of making money online.
Once upon a time blogging was nothing more than a hobby. People who wrote blogs did so for sharing information. Back in those days making money blogging was considered a bad practice in blogging culture.
A lot has changed over the years though. Today, blogging for money has become a common practice.
Millions of bloggers are working hard to make money with their blogs but only a handful of them are able to generate full-time incomes with blogging.
Some bloggers are making five figures a month while others are struggling to pay their bills with the income they receive from blogging. Some are using their blogs to generate supplementing income and some are making headlines with the amount of money they make with their blogs.
Your success as a professional blogger and the amount of money you can make with your blog will depend a lot on your attitude, blogging strategies and the right set of tools.
Apart from earning you a living, a blog can bring you fame by helping you build an impressive profile in your niche market. Not to mention it helps you increase your contacts too.
If you are serious about earning money online, read on to find out what it takes to start a blog and make money blogging.
What is a Blog
A blog is a type of website arranged chronologically. It is usually owned by a group or an individual and updated regularly, at least more often than a regular website. Some blogs are updated multiple times in a day.
The person who writes a blog and makes money doing it is known as blogger and the activity of updating a blog is called blogging.
The biggest difference between a regular website and a blog is that a blog follows a conversational style. Reading a blog is like listening to the blogger. Due to this informal, conversational style, people love to read blogs and revisit them again and again.
People keep blogs for a number of reasons. Some people blog for money while others do so to share their passion with others.
Companies use blogs to roll updates about a new product or service or connect with their employees.
That’s enough about blogs for now. Find out how to start one to make money blogging.
How to Start a Blog
Starting a blog is simple. You can have a blog up and running within minutes. However, a lot of careful planning is required and here’s what it involves.
Step 1: Find Your Niche or Select One
What are you going to blog about?
This is the most important question and you must find an appropriate answer to it before proceeding further.
There are thousands of bloggers out there minting money by blogging about what they love the most.
Similarly, you must find out what you are passionate about before you start a blog.
So what are you passionate about?
Food? Fashion? Fitness? Diet? Games? Music? Movies? Gadgets? Cars? Computers? Discounts? Online shopping? Teaching something? Making people laugh? Inspiring others?
Or something else?
For instance, if you pick food as a niche for your blog, you can share recipes on your blog. You can shoot some videos and show people how to cook. You can tell people about great restaurants to dine out. You can even publish reviews about these restaurants, about the quality of food served there, about happy hours and other special discounts available there, etc.
If you can’t find a niche, select one. Just look around on the Internet and see what types of blogs are the most successful. Get inspired and create a blog.
The possibilities are endless. All you have to do to set sailing is find a niche.
Step 2: Decide a (Great) Name for Your Blog
Next comes finding a great name for your blog. Do some brainstorming. Reach out to your friends and loved ones and seek their help in picking up a name for your blog.
It is always a great idea to pick a short and memorable name for your blog because it is easy to remember and spell.
Here are a few guidelines on choosing a great name for your blog.
- Pick a short and catchy blog name that is easy to remember.
- Choose a discoverable blog name if you aim to rely solely on the traffic from search engines. A discoverable blog name includes keywords. For example, foodtoloseweight.com.
- Select a brandable blog name if you are going to focus on paid search listings, banner ads, etc. A brandable blog name does not contain keywords. It only contains a brand name.
- Do not choose a name too similar to another blog.
Step 3: Pick a Blogging Platform
Where are you going to blog?
You can choose from a number of free and paid blogging platforms. Take a look at some of the best blogging platforms and pick one for your blog.
WordPress is a great blogging platform that is used by millions of people around the world. It comes in two flavours, free and freemium (a combination of free and premium).com deals with the freemium blogging service. You are provided with a basic set of tools, templates and plugins along with some free space and web hosting required for starting a blog. It also provides some premium upgrades to enhance your blogging experience. WordPress.org is provided completely free of cost. With it, you get to host the WordPress software on your own servers which means you get total control over your data. You can also make changes to the design and appearance of your blog at your will. What’s more you can even modify the code to your heart’s content.
Blogger is powered by Google. It is provided free of cost. A Gmail/Google account is all it takes to get started with Blogger. Simple and powerful tools make setting up and managing blogs a breeze with Blogger. Google also lets you integrate AdSense into your blogs which is a great opportunity to earn money blogging.
Tumblr is also a free blogging platform which is known for its slick themes and social media integration. Along with the eye candy, it provides a wide range of tools to manage content on your blog. Youngsters love Tumblr and if you are targeting them through your blog, you might want to choose Tumblr.
Ghost is an open-source blogging platform. It is quick to set up and use. You can also download the Ghost software and install it on your own web server. It is not free but it offers a range of tools and resources for novice and professional bloggers. It is known for its fully customizable system and feature-rich dashboard.
Typepad is one of the oldest blogging platforms available. It’s not free but it is easy to set up and use. People have always loved Typepad for its reliability, set of designs, unlimited storage and great customer service.
Of course, the list above is not definitive; there are many more blogging platforms available online. If you think they fit the bill, go with them. The bottom line is: you should always choose a blogging platform that is easy and reliable.
Step 4: Choose a (Stunning) Design and Appearance for Your Blog
The design and appearance of your blog is very very important.
It is true that people read blogs to grab information. But what keeps them glued to a blog is its design and appearance.
Choosing an appropriate colour combination is absolutely necessary for building a successful blog. Yet, ironically, most people overlook this important aspect of blog development.
Use colours that suit your blog and help you deliver your message effectively.
Step 5: Research Keywords Related to Your Niche
You also need a set of keywords to help readers find your blog.
People use keywords to find information online. When you choose keywords that suit your niche, it is likely that people will find your blog through search engines.
A number of paid and free keyword research tools are available online. Ubersuggest.org is one of them. It’s free and very effective at suggesting appropriate keywords for a search term. Use this tool to find keywords that matter for your blog’s success.
Step 6: Start Writing and Uploading (Genuine) Content on Your Blog
Blogs contain content. They also contain images, videos, audio and a whole lot of stuff but all that is connected together by content. Therefore, you need content, a lot of content if you are serious about making money with your blog.
It is always a great idea to write content for your blog. Doing so saves you money besides giving you total control over your content. But if you think you are not much of a content writer, don’t worry. You can always hire a content writer to do the job for you. Outsourcing options are also available.
If you decide to write content, make sure you do not copy someone else’s content. Doing so will put a dent in your reputation. Apart from that, do not make grammatical mistakes and look carefully for typos before you publish content on your blog. Also include appropriate keywords to optimize your content so that search engines can find them.
How to Make Money Blogging
Here comes the real stuff. In this section your will earn how to make money blogging.
Step 1: Choose How to Monetize Your Blog
There are dozens of ways you can make money with your blog. But to help you get going, we have selected the most popular methods for monetizing a blog. Have a look.
- Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is the most popular method of making money through blogs. You become an affiliate with a company and promote its products or services on your blog. You receive commission for every sale. The best part is that you can educate a visitor about the benefits of buying the product displayed and therefore increase the chances of purchase.
- Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
In PPC advertising, you basically rent out some space on your blog pages to a PPC advertiser. They display relevant ads in the space provided and you get paid each time a user clicks an ad and lands on the advertiser’s website. It’s a great method of generating passive income.
- Cost-Per-Impression (CPI) Advertising
CPI advertising is similar to PPC advertising. The only difference lies in the way you get paid. Advertisers pay you each time an advertisement is displayed just like the ads displayed on TV. CPI is usually calculated per estimated 1000 views of the ad and therefore it is also known as Cost-Per-Thousand (CPT) advertising.
- Advertising Space
With this method, you basically rent out some advertising space on your blog pages. Those who are interested in advertising in that space pay you the necessary charges. If you are an expert in your niche and people love to read your blog regularly, you can make a lot of money with this method.
- Product Reviews
It is similar to affiliate marketing but it provides you more control. You are not restricted to a single affiliate program. Rather, you can review as many products as you like, even from different providers. Once your blog starts receiving significant traffic, you can earn quite a bit of money for displaying affiliate banners for specific products on your blog.
- Write an E-book and Sell it
If you are an expert on a particular topic, write an e-book about it and then sell it through your blog. There are thousands of bloggers out there who are making money through e-books. If you possess certain skills that can help people solve their problems, you should use them to make money.
- Membership Programs
Membership programs are very effective for making money blogging. The concept is simple: a customer must pay a subscription price in order to access a product or service. Think about Netflix subscription, for example.
People are getting online more than ever to learn something new. So your talent and expertise can get you a lot of money. Create a series of lessons showcasing your expertise. Make some of these lessons available for free. Save the rest of the lessons for subscribers only. Free lessons act as teasers and those who get impressed generally buy the paid stuff.
- Sell Your Own Products
How about selling your paintings, handicrafts, apparel, photos, music, software apps, spice blends, edible stuff like pickles, jams, sauces, etc. through your blog?
Step 2: Grow Blog Traffic, Links and Shares
Once you have decided how to make money with your blog, the next step is to promote your blog to increase your traffic, links and shares.
This is the most important step and it requires effort, patience and careful planning and execution before you start to see results.
You must optimize each page on your blog for search engines using search engine optimization (SEO) methods. Proper SEO improves your blog’s ranking which in turns makes it more discoverable through search engines. People use search engines to find information and they will continue doing so no matter what.
Apart from that, you should actively promote individual blog posts through different social media profiles. Start with Facebook and then gradually move to other social networking sites.
You can also get in touch with other professional bloggers who run blogs similar to your blog and link your blog with their blogs. Linking improves your blog’s reputation and rankings. There are two types of links that you can get from a similar blog, a link in the blogroll or an inline link used as citation. Both of these links are just as perfect, although a blogroll link is recommended as the blogroll is usually displayed on every single page of a blog.
Above all, write valuable content because it is sharable and linkable. When people come across a piece of content that impresses them, they tend to share it with their family and friends.
A blog that contains quality content attracts readers. Such blogs are also preferred by similar blogs for link building. Every link counts and adds to your reputation.
Always aim for publishing original content that provides vital information and is interesting to read in order to increase your blog traffic and build its reputation.
It’s Time to Make Money Blogging!
Well, what do you think? Are you ready to make money with your blog? We wish you all the best and hope you will come up with a successful blog that provides you regular income. Don’t forget to share your success story with us. And thanks for reading!