Thanks for an awesome step by step. I started by getting a domain and hosting, as per your instruction, but at the end of my registration page on Host Gator, I didn’t find the “Constant Contact” add on. Instead, I have “Get a Pro Email Address from Google” add on. How do I get this Constant Contact add on, and do you suggest me adding the Pro Email Address one? Thank you so much, and so sorry for such a noob question 😀
For example, the entertainment blogger you mentioned. That’s a completely different style of blogging, and it operates by entirely different rules. Usually, the only way to monetize those blogs is advertising, and as a consequence, those bloggers almost never make much money.
I think you may well be right if you are saying that few of us will have the skills required to attract and service a lucrative and large enough market to earn the sort of sums quoted. Nevertheless, may I just say that Jon has freely given us, not only a system but the commercial logic and reasonings behind that system.
You might want to install a contact form (WordPress.org has plugins for this) or just write out your email address on your contact page. If you’re worried about spam, you can write something like “janice AT janicerunsfast DOT com.”
I don’t know many bloggers who earn money from their blog alone. By that, I’m referencing mainly to my previous point about thinking bigger than your blog. Most bloggers don’t earn a living just from selling sidebar ads and writing one post everyday. A Beautiful Mess sells books and e-courses. Designlovefest teaches Blogshop, a popular Photoshop workshop for bloggers. Oh Joy! just created a line of products for Target. These are some of the biggest bloggers I know of, yet they are constantly innovating and thinking of new ways to use their blog as a creative starting point and marketing tool. Be an innovator. Branch out.
I will be rocking my blogging in 2018! Back in the Fall of 2017 I rolled out a modern web site design and a podcast. I’ve also just done an evaluation of what worked last year and the areas where I fell short. I also found it helpful to examine those latter areas to understand why. With those in mind, I know where I need to focus my energy. I’ve even got two new products in the works (both in the editing phase). 2018, here I come!
A blog is not a blog without content so once you’ve set your blog up you need to focus your attention upon creating useful content. What you choose to create will depend a little on the topic that you choose to write about (on that note, most successful bloggers have some focus to their blogging whether that be a niche or a demographic that they write for).
However, given that there are over 72 million active users using WordPress today, it’s clear which platform is the boss. Even my own blogs and sites are built with the WordPress blogging platform. Here’s why:
Totally, irrevocably sold on long content! It’s taking a long time to learn everything, I still don’t know what product to offer as I’m bad at getting specific – but my traffic and subscribers are growing. One more step to take along the road.
So….why would someone accept me as a guest blogger? I have no blog where I’ve written similar content on my own platform, and because we’re not focusing on Twitter, Facebook and Google+, I have no social proof of any kind.
It’s my responsibility. If people are ever going to respect blogging as a legitimate business model, those of us who are successful have to speak up and share what we’ve learned. None of us works in a vacuum. The only way we can advance our field as a whole is to collectively share what we’ve learned.
Point #6 about deliberately delaying the sale happens to have this added benefit of giving the blogger more insight into the audience through the way they interact with the blog. i.e. The posts they read, the comments they leave etc.
Once you’ve really understood the audience, it’s a case of demonstrating the potential value the product (in excess of the cost) will bring to the audience in the form of a solved problem. If it’s clear that your product will deliver more value to the customer than they pay for it, then it’s a no brainer for the customer.
I suppose I just don’t see why being DEVOID of a blog and social media will make you an attractive guest blogging candidate. I get that you’ll maybe be more focused on finding guest blogs rather than building up your Twitter following, but couldn’t you just ask easily say that we should focus on doing nothing but building followers on Twitter, because you can then build relationships and find guest posting opportunities through the people you meet in social media?
WordPress essentials aren’t often needed, but I’d recommend whois privacy (that will keep all your personal details private) and definitely automated backups (this’ll save your website just in case anything fails or disappears, so you won’t lose any or very little of your blog).
Differentiating yourself from all the others is no simple task. I suppose one way, is to simply be yourself…as we’re all unique….but we still need to be engaging. I’ve come across plenty of people who are unique, but can put you to sleep in a couple of short sentences…
It can help to take a look at your favorite blogs or other popular blogs you’ve heard of with a critical eye to figure out how they’re succeeding. You can also look at the flip side: What do some blogs do that keep you from coming back?
Detailed and informative post. I’m a poker-player, I play online on different sites like 777spinslot. I’ve thought about my blog, where I can share different secrets of poker, tricks and tips. But I don’t know where to begin. May be your post will help me
Great post, thanks for sharing. Couldn’t agree more as Blue Host with WordPress Blogging is an Excellent way to generate a Passive Income Online. Love the use of Plugins with WordPress, makes Search Engine Optimization SO Much Easier.
Reddit – ads appear on the top of the various pages. They are obviously ads so users don’t feel tricked into clicking on them. When people choose to select an ad they usually know it. So there is little chance of upsetting customers this way.
There’s a rumor floating around that I’ve made each of those mistakes on multiple occasions. Some people also say I have to be repeatedly reminded about the graph above, lest I slip up and nearly bankrupt the company (again).
This post was so good that I had to sit in my car and keep reading after I left work, here in the garage. Ha! What caught my attention is the funnel analogy and the webinars. Starting with the expensive first, then offering the less expensive. Brilliant. Also, I want to do webinar but am not sure how to get started. But dammit if I’m not going to think of how to move in that direction! Thanks for the kick in the butt, Jon! 🙂
If all this affiliate marketing stuff sound like rocket science to you then I’d suggest you take advantage of some training on how to set up your own passive income generating online affiliate business.
WordPress is free open source software – you are referring to your web hosting company. Web hosts will inform you of any charges in advance and it is very easy to move to a new host. Some web hosts offer free transfers if you sign up for a contract of 12 months or more. The other thing to do to avoid sudden price hikes is pay for 36 months rather than 12.
Jon, you just rock! I agree that you should be called “his Royal Awesomeness” :). This is the greatest post I ever read about blogging and monetizing a blog. I know some bloggers who are able to make a living 20-30k per year with their blogs but it took them years to build a following and thousands of posts too…
I went to hostgator as per your instruction. Now I am confused as to whats the difference between “Register a new domain”and Ï already own this domain”? When I try to register myname.com in the register a new domain section it just says unavailable whereas its available in the I already own this domain section. So do I need to buy a new domain name separately before proceeding to hostgator or hosting and domain name come together? Ah I am really confused, please help!
Jon, great post. I can tell you put a lot of time and effort into it. A very good read and you are right – I have been afraid to call myself a blogger up to now because most people don’t take you seriously. From today I will shout from the rooftops ‘Yes I’m a blogger’ 🙂
The major thing to remember here, however, is that we will see more competition for organic links because more and more people are moving away from the old “link building” methods of the past in favor of a “quality content” approach to to SEO that sites like MOZ. tell us to follow.
Wow, this is a great post with tons of data-driven insights that would take me years to figure out on my own. You can earn a good income from blogging, but I’m not sure I want to do it this way myself. I’m more interested in becoming a ghostblogger for businesses.
It’s a great post, Jon. I always loved your style, you make everything sound so attention-grabbing. Anyway, I think it’s a very helpful post, meaning that some of those points actually (well, who am I fooling here, most of them) were something new for me. Especially about SEO.
I created this site to give beginners a fast, foolproof guide to starting a blog without having to learn HTML or making expensive mistakes that most people do. 9,500 blogs have already been created using this guide!
In addition, you don’t need to be an expert on your topic in order to have a successful blog. For example, readers of a cooking blog don’t want to read a textbook from a food scientist, they want to hear the experiences of someone who has actually cooked some real meals, mistakes and all.

The best ranking sites are still the ones with back links. I was going to write “the BEST back links” but decided against it as there are a bunch of blogs in my niche that rank with a huge volume of crappy back links, which is sad.