How To Create A Blog… Did I just say that you wanna start a blog? But is it that easy in the first place? Okey, I want you first to think of blogging as a career! Wait, Is blogging even a career?
Blogging is one of those activities that most people do not associate with a career path, but truthfully, those people really don’t understand the power that bloggers have. I’m not just talking about the influence that bloggers have over their audience—I’m talking about the earning power that bloggers have to make a living for themselves.
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Thanks to the rise of the digital world and the power of digital communication, we now have the ability to post almost anything (within reason) online. This has proven to be great for those aspiring writers, photographers, graphic designers, web developers, and lots of other creative professionals.
With this freedom, we have the ability to build our own blogs from our own homes or even on the move.
In today’s post, I want to talk to you about whether or not blogging is a good career path. That being said let’s go ahead and get started.
How I personally view blogging.
I recently was combing through the internet and I bumped into these reports. One top blogger kept his financial reports ever since he started making money from his blogs – This is like stock-keeping huh! Wish I had thought of the same earlier.
Wait, 2M a month just blogging …! And am not saying that he is the top paid. There are tons of influential bloggers out there making even 10 times or more per month. There is no exact limit on how much you can make blogging.
Most top paid bloggers will tell you that they have been in the field for some years before they attained their affluence.
So you need to understand that when you start a blog, you are starting a business, you are actually an entrepreneur. The thing is, the startup cost is very low, so technically speaking, you don’t even need to get a college education to be able to do this. It’s something that you can just do.
I put my short story on how I learned of blogging on our about page. You may take a moment and check it out. but how do bloggers make money?
how to make money blogging?
You may have heard of people becoming full-time “bloggers” and that they are actually making good money! And as a beginning blogger, you want to know if you also can make money blogging.
The answer is yes. But as I said earlier, when you think of starting a blog “understand that you are starting a business.”
Every business offer value to its customers in form of service or products for sale. Similarly, as a blogger, you will need to ensure that you deliver value to your readers for them to find a reason why they can stick around your blog.
The more you get a growing audience, the more money you can make. At Launch, Onlinejobsinkenya (OJIK) boasted over 5,000 subscribers both on-site and on our social media channels. A great pointer to a bright future.
There are several ways you can start making money as a blogger. The key of them are these five:
- Affiliate marketing
- Write sponsored posts
- sale a course
- Sale a service or product
Since each of these methods can make independent posts. I will give a brief on each of them just to put you in a picture of how you can make money if you decide to start a successful blogging career. You still can find even more important posts that will help you by enrolling in our newsletter.
You can make money from advertising on your blog You’ve seen the ads in the sidebar of sites or in the articles like what you see in the image above
Advertisers will usually pay on a per-click or per-view basis. So, a blogger will make money when a visitor either views or clicks an ad.
Google Adsense is the most common pay-per-click ad network that aspiring bloggers get started with.
As you meet certain blog traffic thresholds you can move to ad networks like Adthrive, Mediavine, or Ezoic. These 3 ad networks all pay on a per-view basis.
Getting started with display advertising is extremely easy and you don’t have to negotiate with all the advertisers on your site. Once you are approved with any of the above networks, simply place a small piece of code on your site and the advertising “magically” happens.
You just collect your checks at the end of each month! Just that easy.
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is yet another method you can use to make money as a blogger. This is where you establish a connection with a company and then promote that company’s products and or services.
The company will give you a unique URL to the company’s website. When a viewer clicks that unique link and then purchases from the company, you will receive a commission.
Commissions are given to you in a percentage of the sale or a fixed amount per sale or lead.
You may connect either directly with the company or through an affiliated community such as commission junction and ShareASale.
Some online stores have other programs such as sales consultant in which you will do the sales and engage with customers directly and not just the mere link clicks such as the Jumia force program.
3. Write sponsored posts
Sponsored content is where a company will pay as a blogger to create content about their brand or a specific product. Sponsored content typically looks like any other content you produce on your blog with the same tone and feel (disclosed that it is sponsored, of course).
These sponsored posts can be quickly lucrative for you as a blogger as an extra income source.
4. Sale a course
A very popular way for bloggers to make money is to start an online course. This course might be how to create a certain craft or it might be an exclusive guide on doing something. Of course, it will be on something you have learned and you are well conversant on.
All you need is to build is a loyal following to build a great fan base. And if you create something that really provides value in the form of a course, those fans will gladly pay good money for that product no matter the price.
5. Sale a service or a product
Many people think that bloggers primarily make their income via ads. That is true for many, but some of the most successful bloggers these days sell their own products.
Bloggers sell digital products, educational products, memberships or subscriptions, books, their own physical products, or wholesale purchase a product and retail it on their own blog.
A good example of a blog that sells services to its users is cyber-dot-co-dot-ke [Cyber.co.ke]. The site discusses almost anything you would like to know on (Kenya Revenue Authority) KRA and in line with the same. They sell the service of filing tax returns. Quite a brilliant way of making money online.
What will you be writing about?
You love the idea of starting a blog. But…you’re not sure what to write about. Or maybe you have an idea, but you’re not sure if it will work. Sound familiar?
If you’re nodding your head, you’re definitely not alone. Choosing a blog niche is one of the hardest parts of starting a blog – it makes all the technical stuff seem like a cakewalk in comparison!
You might have a million ideas bouncing around your head. Or, you might be struggling to come up with just one.
The purpose of a blog is to share your thoughts and ideas with the world, right? So why can’t you just…share your thoughts and ideas as they come to you?
Unfortunately, you have to pick a single idea of them all… It is that idea that we call a niche.
Well, there’s no Internet police that will come break down your door if you don’t stick to your niche. And there are people who’ve found success with a more scattered approach.
But the problem is that your readers aren’t guaranteed to be interested in all the topics you personally love.
On the other hand, if you stick to one topic, you can guarantee that people who are interested in one of your posts have a high chance of being interested in all of your other content, as well since they are related.
Also, remember I said blogging is more like entrepreneurship and so. When choosing a niche you go for one that can make you an income. A quick search on the internet of top-paying niches will really be helpful to you.
But then you also do not want to be so focused on money that you forget to deliver value to your readers. Just avoid a topic you have no or less knowledge of.
I recommend you go for topics that solve a problem in society or what the online community wants most.
What do you need to start a successful blogging career?
There are some essentials that are a must-have so as to cement your blogging idea into solid concrete – to guarantee your profits. I will put this into three major categories as follows:
- Virtual tools
By this, I mean that you need a tech gadget that will help you in doing the publication of your posts. If you got a laptop, stable power supply, and an internet connection then you are good to go.
A desktop computer is equally a good option however it all depends on you – whether or not you are always on the move. I however DO NOT recommend that you start your blogging career on your mobile phone.
We all may have humble beginnings but in this case, we are talking business. And so, just get yourself a good laptop or desktop computer that is good for bloggers. Your phone may serve as a good camera or for sharing your posts to your social media cycles.
You don’t have to strain much on your budget. Just get what is within a price range you can afford. Maybe this list here may help you.
A camera could be handy if you are doing blogs that need taking physical shots i.e news, review, or travel blog. And this will also mean that you invest in a good D-SLR camera. Otherwise, you may opt to use free stock images from sites like canva.com, pexel.com, and pixabay.
The only challenge with these free stock images is that they may not fully represent the exact thing you could be talking about in an article.
Arming yourself with a pen and notebook is always a good habit, I personally got my own set of stationeries. But then this also depends on you.
Apart from the basic technical know-how on using the devices I mentioned above and the internet. There are some skills that you also have to have in order to be a successful blogger.
First, you need to have good writing skills. If you can’t write or you’re not big on writing, then you’re not going to do well with blogging. It doesn’t mean you can’t improve; you can always take writing classes, or you can practice writing to get better at it, but you generally have to be a pretty good writer.
You also have to be hardworking. You absolutely have to work hard at this blogging stuff. It isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme, but it can actually happen if you work really hard at it.
In my over three years of doing this, I’ve also discovered that patience and consistency are such a very good virtue to have as a blogger. In that first year, you’re not going to see a lot of success (depending on what you are blogging on), which leads me to my next point.
You need to be stubborn. You need to believe that you are going to succeed, and you need to be stubborn enough to keep pushing and keep working hard, even though you don’t see a ton of results. In time, as you continue to work hard, those results will come. You work hard in the sense that you research, write value, target, and share.
Other skills required to start a successful blogging career
I’d also say that a really good skill to have as a blogger is the ability to network—not just in person, but also through email. Being able to connect with people and network with them is a very helpful tool in this particular industry, because the more people you know, the more opportunities are going to open up for you.
You also need to be organized to be able to run any type of business, and a blog is no different. But lastly, the most important skill you need is to be competitive. If you are a competitive person at your core, then blogging is really good for you, because there is definitely competition out there.
There’s not so much competition that they can’t be beaten, but there is competition out there. If you see a competitor that you think is weak, or that you think you could look at what they’re doing and maybe do it a little bit better, you can go after them and try to directly compete and hopefully overtake them.
Then, you move on to the next competitor, and then the next. There’s no shortage of competition, and I personally love that. It’s something that is a reality in the blogging space, or really in any area.
4. Virtual tools
This becomes the most fundamental part of your business. Actually, if you got all the above and lack the virtual then there is no blog. These tools include a domain name, Webhosting account, Plugins, and a Theme. I will explain this in a minute when we start setting up our blog together.
Step by step guide on how to start a blog
There are various platforms that you can use to set up a blog. However, I personally like WordPress. In fact, OJIK is proudly built on WordPress.
I am just recommending what I have used and found out to be worthy of whispering the news to my friend saying – Hey! WordPress is superb in making money for anyone intending to start a blogging career
The setup process is easy to follow whether you are 18 years old or 65 years old. However, if you need help, our expert team will help you set up your blog for free. → Click Here to Get Your Free WordPress Blog Setup! ←
Virtual tools you need to start a WordPress blog
There are three important virtual tools you need to create a WordPress blog:
- A domain name idea (this will be the name of your blog i.e blazona.org)
- A web hosting account (this is where your blog live on the internet)
- Your undivided attention for 30 minutes.
Yes, you read it right. You can start a blog from scratch in less than 30 minutes starting now, and we will walk you through the whole process, step by step.
Ready? Let’s start a successful blogging career construction in this way.
Step 1. Setup
The biggest mistake beginners make when building a blog is choosing the wrong blogging platform. Thankfully you’re here, so you won’t be making that mistake.
To me, it makes more sense to use WordPress.org also known as self-hosted WordPress. Why?
Because it is free to use, you can install plugins, customize your blog design, and most importantly make money from your blog without any restrictions. Unlike wordpress.com which will restrict you even after making some payments.
WordPress is also the number one website platform used by all successful blogs. To put it in perspective, 40% of all websites on the internet use WordPress!
There’s no catch. It’s free because you have to do the setup and host it yourself without a limit.
In other words, you need a domain name and web hosting.
A domain name is what people type to get to your website. It’s your blog’s address on the internet. Think google.com or sokoradar.co.ke
Web hosting is where your website files live. It’s your blog house on the internet. Every blog needs web hosting.
A domain name typically costs around $14.99 / year, and web hosting normally costs $7.99 / month.
That’s a lot of money for beginners who are just starting out.
Thankfully, Bluehost, an official WordPress recommended hosting provider, has agreed to offer our users a free domain name and over 60% off on web hosting.
Bluehost is one of the oldest web hosting companies on the internet. They are also the largest brand name when it comes to WordPress hosting because they host millions of websites including our own.
On top of all this, Bluehost has been working with WordPress since 2005, and they are committed to giving back. That’s why they have promised us that if you cannot get your blog online within 30 minutes by following this tutorial, then our expert team will complete the process for you without any cost. They will compensate us, so you don’t have to. Contact us for free blog setup help.
NOTE: At OJIK we believe in transparency. If you sign up with Bluehost using our referral link, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you (in fact, you will save money and get a free domain). We would get this commission for recommending just about any WordPress hosting company, but we only recommend products that we use personally use and believe will add value to our readers.
Let’s go ahead and purchase your domain + hosting.
Open up Bluehost in a new window and follow along.
The first thing you need to do is click on the green Get Started Now button to get started.
On the next screen, select the plan that you need (basic and plus are the most popular).
After that, you will be asked to enter the domain name for your website.
Lastly, you will need to add your account information and finalize the package info to complete the process. We recommend going with the 36-month plan because that’s the best value.
On this screen, you will see optional extras that you can purchase. It’s entirely up to you whether or not you purchase these, but we generally don’t recommend purchasing them right away. You can always add them later on if you decide that you need them.
Once completed, you will receive an email with details on how to log in to your web hosting control panel (cPanel). This is where you manage everything from support, emails, among other things. But most importantly, this is where you install WordPress.
Step 2. Install WordPress
When you signup with the new version of Bluehost using our link, they will automatically install WordPress for you. This new version was recently launched to make it easier for non-techy users to create their blogs.
What this means is you simply need to log in to your Bluehost account, and then click the Login to WordPress button to get started.
You can also log in to WordPress by simply going to yoursite.com/wp-admin/ directly from your browser.
Once WordPress is set up, you’re ready to customize your blog’s appearance to make it your own and start blogging.
Step 3. Selecting Your WordPress Theme
The visual appearance of your WordPress blog is controlled by themes. When you first visit your blog, it will look something like this:
This is not very appealing to most people.
Customizing the look and feel of your blog is by far one of the most exciting and rewarding parts of the journey of creating your WordPress blog even as you start a successful blogging career.
There are thousands of pre-made WordPress themes that you can install on your site. Some of them are free themes, while others are paid.
You can change your theme by going to your WordPress dashboard and clicking on Appearance » Themes.
Go ahead and click on the Add New button.
On the next screen, you will able to search from 8,200+ free WordPress themes that are available in the official WordPress.org themes directory. You can sort by popular, latest, featured, as well as other feature filters (i.e industry, layout, etc).
You can take your mouse over to a theme, and you will see a Preview button. Clicking on it will open the theme preview where you can see how the design would look on your website.
The preview of your theme may not look exactly as shown in the screenshot, which is normal as you will get to customize and set it up later. What you need to look for is design, colors, typography, and other elements.
The best tip to select the perfect WordPress theme is to strive for simplicity in design. It helps you keep things clean and clear while offering a good experience to your users.
When you have found the theme that you like, simply bring your mouse on it, and it will show the Install button. Click on it and wait for the theme to be installed. After that, the install button will be replaced with an Activate button. You need to click on it to Activate the theme.
Once you have installed your theme, you can customize it by clicking on the Customize link under the Appearance menu.
Once you have selected your WordPress theme, you are now ready to create your first blog post.
Step 4. Creating Your First Blog Post
To write a blog post, click on the Posts » Add New menu in your WordPress dashboard.
You will see an editor area where you can write your first blog post.
WordPress uses a block-based editor where each element is a block. This allows you to create beautiful content layouts for your blog posts.
Once you’re done writing, go ahead and click on the Publish button on the top-right corner of the screen to make your blog post publicly available.
On the posts screen, you will notice several other sections such as Categories and Tags. You can use these to organize your blog posts into sections.
How to Optimize Your WordPress Blog for SEO
Most beginners don’t optimize for SEO when creating a blog. SEO or search engine optimization helps users find your blog in search engines. If you want more traffic, then it’s crucial that you optimize your blog for SEO from the beginning.
To get started, first you need to install and activate the Yoast plugin. It is the complete WordPress SEO plugin that will help you optimize your blog.
The plugin comes with a quick configuration wizard to help you walk through the setup. It will help you set up a WordPress sitemap, write proper keywords and meta descriptions, add schema markup, and a whole lot more.
Just as quick as that and you are ready to start blog writing. What do you think, Will you get started on a blogging career?
Why you need to get started now
So why do I think that you should get started in a career as a blogger now? It’s pretty simple. You can still work while you are blogging. In other words, you don’t have to quit your job, and I don’t advise you to.
I think this is something where you should do as a side gig. Hopefully, you start to build up your blog, and eventually, that blog will out-earn your full-time job so you can quit. But in the beginning, do it on the side. There’s nothing wrong with that, and that’s exactly what I did.
There is always a slight curve for growth and learning. This will help you fine-tune your skills and illuminate the passion you have. Taking longer to start means pushing your success a little further from you.
1. How long should a blog article be?
There is no specific maximum number of words that you must attain for your post to be published. After all you are an own boss. But at SokoRadar we recommend something not less than 300 words. You then can grow the length with time.
2. How frequently should I blog?
This entirely depends on the type of your audience and yourself. Example: A news blog writing ought to be consistent in publishing news posts daily to its readers. On the other hand, if you are doing a travel blog, you may manage to publish your next post maybe after a month or two of your vacation.
But the more content you have, the more chances you have of being found on Google or attracting a visitor. By this logic, you would think that blogging daily would be the best approach but the reality of it is, this can get tiring.
If you can’t write content that has some type of value for your audience, then it won’t matter if you write 7 times a day or once every 2 months.
You however can take this approach:
- Do blog writing furiously for the first 1-2 months to build up your content library.
- From month 3 forward slow down your blog writing to a pace that you feel comfortable with.
The logic behind this is that if you can build up a nice content library (15-30 posts), then you can spend time promoting those posts with a healthy rotation.
3. How do I get traffic to my new blog?
There are many ways you can do this but best of all is that which happens out of value the readers find in your posts and share.
If 30 people visit your blog and none of those 30 people like nor share what you’ve written, then you have to find a brand new set of 30 people.
However, if 30 people visit your blog and 5 of them share a piece of content, then you’ve reached an exponentially larger audience without trying.
That is to mean that simply get your content in front of the right people that will care about it.
4. Is there a common mistake to avoid?
As a beginner, you may make a few mistakes along the way. however, the worst is procrastinating and not starting your new blog now!
Our final thought
Above is how to create a blog and start a successful blogging career. Do personal research on topics that can offer solutions to problems. People out there want solutions. In fact, every millionaire will tell you their companies solve a particular problem in the society
This post is periodically updated to ensure fresh content for our readers.
For more about blog writing tips, we recommend that you check this assorted post by clicking here.
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