Are you interested in making an income online?
Well spookily enough I am about to share with you this guide on how to earn money by blogging. It’s the method I use personally.
Even if you are a complete and utter beginner who has never set up a blog in your entire life, you can quickly and easily set up your very own blog (literally in a few minutes), and with a bit of free training, begin to make money online.
How am I so certain? Because I have done just that, and if I can do it, then you surely can.
Difference between a Blog and a Website?
There seems to be a little confusion regarding the difference between a blog and a website. Well the answer is… nearly none. They are in fact pretty much the same thing, just laid out slightly differently. Broadly speaking, websites have a number of ‘pages’, whereas blogs have a number of ‘posts’.
‘Posts’ are pretty much the same as ‘pages’ but presented in such a way that makes reading them, writing them, and sharing them far easier. So when someone says to you, “ooh have your read so-and-so’s blog?” they are in fact talking about a website that creates ‘posts’.
So in short:
- Websites are best used by companies for selling their products.
- Blogs are best used by individuals or companies to provide information about a certain subject or product.
- Both blogs and websites can be used to make money.
- As an individual, you are best to focus on a blog unless you have a physical item to sell.
Can you make money from a blog?
The burning question on the tip of your tongue is probably, ‘Can I actually make any money?’
The simple answer is yes, you most certainly can! There are a plenty of ways you can ‘monetize’ your blog, and in the upcoming section ‘Monetize your Blog’ I will be covering a few of the most common methods.
Although you could equally setup a website and sell products from it by using traditional methods, in my opinion a blog is by far the easiest method for the individual or small company to use for promotion. In fact even big companies who already have a website for selling their products, also have a blog. That in itself demonstrates the power of the blog.
Confused on how to get started?
Yes it can be a tad confusing and a little nerve wracking to know exactly where to begin, as if you start moving in the wrong direction you can waste one of your most precious resources which is YOUR TIME. But fear not dear reader, as below are the 8 steps we will be discussing in more details during this post. Even if you are a complete beginner, scared of spiders, snakes, or even worse… clowns, you can do this!
- Decide what your blog will be about (your ‘niche’).
- Choose a reliable hosting company.
- Get some training.
- Get your Blog online.
- Begin writing helpful and interesting content.
- Gain an audience for your Blog.
- ‘Monetize’ your Blog so you can earn an income from it.
- Get Started!
1. Decide what your Blog will be about.
Firstly you will need to decide what your Blog will actually be about. This is called the ‘niche’. Many folk who want to start a blog already know exactly what they want their blog to be about and that’s great. If however you find it a struggle to decide what to write about then my advice is to make a quick list of your interests/hobbies/passions, as this will help you focus and narrow it down quickly.
If you are lucky enough to have one overall passion, I would suggest that is what you should blog about.
Below are a few ideas to get the creative juices flowing. All would make interesting blogs for readers and could earn you an income.
- Book reviews
- Creative – Art, Crafts, Decorating & DIY
- Food & Drink
- Health & Fitness
- Lifestyle & Travel
- Music Reviews
- Parenting Advice
- Self Improvement
Whatever subject you choose today does not have to be set in stone until the end of time. The secret is you can eventually have more than one blog, but I strongly recommend you should be laser focused on just one blog niche for now.
2. Choose a Reliable Hosting Company.
So what exactly is a blog hosting company?
A blog hosting company is who makes your blog available online, they own the computers/servers that your blog sits on. This is called ‘hosting’. Some hosting companies simply provide hosting, others in addition provide full training, and an active community to bounce ideas off of ans ask questions.
If you end up with the wrong hosting company it can be a complete nightmare to get decent support, training, and stability of your Blog. I have been there, it’s no fun at all as it not only wastes so much of your time, it knocks your confidence as well.
As an experienced blogger, I will later be recommending an outstanding ‘full package’ company that I personally use for both my hosting and training needs.
3. Get Some Training
When you are learning anything new, finding clear and concise step-by-step training guide is key to being up and running quickly. You don’t want to be Googling everything as it will take forever.
I will also show you where to get a bucket load of terrific training videos that will take you from complete beginner to expert in no time at all, plus get excellent support from a community of extremely helpful individuals.
4. Get Your Blog Online
The initial setting up of your blog for the world to see online is really quick and simple after a little training. You can honestly have a blog up in a matter of minutes.
When you are at this stage, the main two things you need to know are (presuming you now know your niche):
- What will the Blog be called so you can choose a domain name (e.g. www.logburners.com)?
- What WordPress ‘Theme’ do you want to choose (e.g. HIERO is the theme this blog is using)
A couple of clicks later and you are online, and can begin adding your content for readers.
5. Start Adding Awesome Content
It’s ALL about the content ladies and gentlemen.
You need to gain both your audiences attention and trust by writing helpful and interesting content relating to your blogs niche for your readers to enjoy. For example, this blog post you are reading right now is (hopefully) clear, concise, and helpful for you.
I feel it’s important to choose a subject matter that you are genuinely interested in so it’s never a chore to write posts, in fact you will look forward to it. Eventually you will be able to start a second or third blog if you fancy as you become more experienced. The world is your oyster, lobster, or whatever sea creature floats your boat.
What is important to me is the pleasure that running my blogs gives me (I have 5 blogs at present). I get to further my knowledge of each blog niche, speak with like-minded people all over the World, meet interesting people, and get involved in live events. Of course, it is great that I can make a steady income from my blogs, but that is honestly secondary when I compare it to the enjoyment I get.
You can check out another popular blog of mine at The Gin Geek which as a rather fabulous Gin Blog. This blog currently receives over 200,000 readers a year!
6. Gain an Audience for your Blog
So you have your blog online, some fabulous content, some Affiliate Links or Pay Per Click adverts, but wait…. there is one more ingredient you need. A blog is pretty useless without READERS!
You can gain an audience for your Blog through search engines (e.g. Google, Bing, Yahoo) and promotion through Social Media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, etc).
Unsure how to get your Blog found by Google and your posts indexed? Don’t worry, the training I will recommend at the end of this post covers everything from the basics to advanced SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Need help with Social Media promotion? No problem, that’s covered in the training too.
7. ‘Monetize’ your Blog
Like everything worthwhile it takes some initial upfront time and effort. I remember it took me two months before I received my first sale, but boy how thrilled I was to earn that first small commission, it was as if I had won the Lottery. Very exciting indeed.
Below are the 3 main ways your Blog will generate you an income.
- Affiliate Links
- PPC Adverts
- Sell your own Products
Within your blogs ‘posts’ that you will write, you can recommend products or services to your audience using something called Affiliate Links. This allows you to create a link on your post (for example, a post about a certain model camera) to the seller’s website (e.g. Amazon), and you will make a commission from Amazon on any sales through your blogs links. Amazon is one of the largest Affiliate’s out there, and have over 550 million different products you can blog about and earn a commission from.
For example, I could write a detailed review about a book for sale on Amazon that I recommend called Affiliate Marketing: How To Make Money Online and if you clicked on the link and purchased it (don’t worry you can click on it, you don’t have to buy it!) I would make a small and most welcome commission.
PPC aka ‘Pay Per Click’ is where you can have adverts pop up on your blog wherever you want them to appear, and if clicked on by a reader you will get a percentage of the sale should they make one. These are very clever as the adverts are targeted. Say for instance that yesterday a reader of your blog was searching the Internet for a lawnmower, then if they visit your blog, even if you blog is not related to lawn mowers, you have the option to either stick with the content of your niche for the adverts (for example Curtains), or have the advert use ‘cookies’ and they will be presented with adverts for lawnmowers.
You can even use a combination of Affiliate Links and PPC on your blog. Just don’t overdo it.
Sell Your own products
Do you make your own products? Then by starting a Blog where you can review them and sell them directly is an excellent idea. You could even add PPC adverts onto your blog to generate an additional income.
8. Time you got started!
OK, time for you to make a start.
I thoroughly recommend a company called Wealthy Affiliate for your blog hosting and ongoing training needs. They really cut down your learning curve and will save you a heck of a lot of wasted time. I still use them now!
- They provide hosting for your blog
- You can purchase a Domain name with them for ease
- Their training takes you from beginner to expert
- It is totally FREE to try for 7 days.
- You don’t even need to give them any credit card details.
Once you have signed up for your Free Starter Membership, start their beginner training & set up your blog (all for free) and see how you feel.
I personally went for the week free trial, found it was just what I was looking for so signed up for the monthly plan. After a month I realised I wanted to fully commit so went for the yearly plan as the discount is great. It’s totally awesome, and I rarely get excited about anything. I have been a member since Jan 2018.
Below is my quick video overview of Wealthy Affiliate and you can Sign Up from there.
Watch my See Inside Wealthy Affiliate video and sign-up for the FREE trial
As with most things, life is a heck of a lot easier if you have the right tools and the right training. Wealthy Affiliate certainly delivers. I hope you found this post useful, and that you are now well on your way to getting that blog of yours online and making an income.
If you have any questions regarding this post then please leave a comment below, it would be fab to hear from you.
The Guide Geek