Perhaps I should mention that I’d like my blogs to be funny and uplifting, just so you now where I’m aiming, I suppose. Sadly, I don’t feel that I have an expertise to offer anyone in any particular field. All I’ve got are my own life lessons and sense of humor. 🙂
You could also offer regular readers or email subscribers a discount to help drum up early sales and reviews. You could even consider trying your own affiliate program and offering your products to other bloggers to promote in exchange for a commission.
Oh, wow! Just…wow! I knew the changes on this site would be phenomenal, but good grief, Jon! I’m nowhere close to where I should be, but this post will be my bookmarked ‘go-to’ when I need to remind myself of the most actionable process I should take as an ‘old newbie’. I know I need help, but this particular post is helping me to wrap my head around what I didn’t understand before. Thanks!
I know that starting a blog can seem overwhelming and intimidating. My free guide was designed just for beginners, and requires only the most basic computer skills. So whether you’re 8 or 88, you can have your blog ready to go in less than 20 minutes.
I mean, of course I’d come up with suitable content for Forbes should they wish to publish me, haha, but honestly we’d be happy with guest posting on even mildly popular travel blogs. The problem up to now, as I mentioned above, is that nobody wants to let us guest post, they want us to pay to do a sponsored post since our blog is attached to our business. If my blog was MexicoMike.com instead of http://blog.geckorockresort.com/ then it wouldn’t be an issue, but as soon as anyone sees the name of our business they incorrectly assume we’re loaded 🙂
Hi! This was hands down one of the most helpful posts I’ve ever read about how to make blogging a realistic career path. I love how honest and open you were in both suggesting the good but reminding me of the bad choices out there, some of which I know I would/have made. I found your blog after hanging my head from another post on yet another site saying to forget about blogging as your source of income. Completely ignoring that advice and seeking out some that matched my determination, I found yours and so glad I did! Thank you again for this awesome post – it’s officially made it into my favorites bar to come back to.
I really like your blog. It’s so professional. I also like your other topics on this blog like how to get email subscribers. I am very hungry for this information. I am becoming a professional blogger right now so I love reading everything I can get my hands on on the subject. I’m going to read more of your work. I think I may have already joined your email list….
The UNESCO listed city of Guanajuato is quite possibly the most picturesque place in all of Mexico. Brightly coloured buildings tumble-down the hillside, leading to lovely plazas and squares. The temperature is perfect, the people…
By now you should have fully working WordPress blog on your own domain name. You should also have a custom blog theme that fits with your blog’s topic. Congratulations – you’ve done a LOT and I’m proud that you’ve managed to get so far.
Comment on those bloggers’ posts, interact with them on Twitter, connect on LinkedIn. You’ll not only create fun relationships, but you’ll increase the chances they’ll share and comment on your content.
Changing your theme is the simplest way to customize your blog, but there are lots of of other customizations you can do. Check out my full post on customizing your blog for an in-depth step-by-step guide. You can also watch the video at the end of this guide to see me completely customize a blog from scratch.
WPBeginner is a very big and popular site which focuses on WordPress more than anything, so this article is on the bias. I would also hope that the author actually used each platform to get a fair accessment too. However, I will give my two cents into this WP vs all others….
I am so very glad I found your website and read this post. I am so inexperienced in all this, but I do see that you take a totally different approach to the many others I have read. It is so refreshing. I will go back reread, study and apply.
Hi, of course a freestyle blog can be profitable, you have to research the market that your audience is interested in. So what topic(s) (read: niches) do you write about. Do some research in Google and see if any ads pop up. If none, that topic is probably not a very good one. The key is to write great posts, provide great content, build an email list and research what your list is interested in (hint: use polls to check that out, let’s say if you are considering to become an affiliate for amazon and you want to promote cooking books, just an example, you could ask your subscribers to go to a poll you created about what books they love to read, and add cooking books as one of the options, plus several others, to make it more attractive, promise that they can win a reward or so, a free product or free service or even $25 will take them to your 1 minute poll). Also: learn about doing keyword research in Google keywords tool. And learn a bit about SEO done the proper way. Now don’t think you learn this in a week. It can take many years to master this art, but at least a year, if you study like crazy. Make sure your content is great, over deliver in great content, so people LOVE to subscribe to your list, offer a freebie that they will LOVE, and to find out what they would Love you can do a poll in your blog post(s) to research various interests your readers have. Then see if there are affiliate programs for that. Before my reply becomes longer then Jon’s article, I think I leave now, but you get the point…. go do your homework kid 😉 Good luck with your booming business! Believe you can do it, because you can, but you need to work hard, and learn the art of building trust and offering what your readers and subscribers Love…. Woohoo, go do your research now!
Great article, Ramsay. I have a question about adding visual content. You say that it’s a good idea to belong to a stock photo site that has an attribution license. It seems like that’s how all of the stock photo sites are nowadays.
It’s not because they were stupid. They didn’t get one of my emails and say, “Oh, look honey, this is a fabulous opportunity to throw our money away. Let’s give this good-looking fellow $10,000 just for the hell of it.”
One example is this: since our blog is a sub-domain for my wife and I’s boutique beach resort, nobody seems to want to touch me as a guest blogger. I get the same response every time “you’re commercial and so you’ve got to pay for a sponsored post”…and while yes, we are commercial and not a private blog per se, we’re a tiny family run business and 95% of private blogs are striving to be commercial, whether they’re associated with a company name or not.
One of the most frustrating things for me since I began blogging was getting more engagement on my blog posts. When I first started I went from nothing to around 200,000 on Alexa in about 3 to 6 months. After that, I had a long hiatus of no content and flew back up past 10,000,000.
Great post, do you have more advice on paid advertising spend for blogs? I have a blog getting decent traffic however I would like to expedite that a bit with a bit of paid advertising. I’ve ventured a bit into facebook ads but am looking for other channels to promote as well. Any advice would be appreciated so I can expand my readership.
I usually choose something that looks professional and pretty easy to customise. WordPress also has this awesome feature that allows you to change themes with just a few clicks. So if you start getting tired of your current blog template, you can just switch to another one without losing any precious content or images.
Choose an account plan based on how far in advance you want to pay. Bluehost bills 1, 2, 3 or 5 years upfront. They do not offer a monthly payment option (hosts that do often charge double or triple). As you can see, it works out to be a very reasonable monthly amount. Not bad for your own blog or website, right? It’s a great deal.

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 😀
Rather than trying to film yourself while holding your camera, invest in a tripod.  Doing so will prevent your audience from getting dizzy from strange camera angles.  A tripod doesn’t have to be expensive.  You can pick one up at Target or Walmart for between $10 and $20.
Most free services have only basic features. This might not be a problem at first, but as you grow, you will almost certainly feel the pinch. Expandability and flexibility are key, both of which are limited with free blogging services.
I feel really fortunate to get that attention, but also kind of know that if I’d just written a little 500-word update on the topic nothing would have happened. The whole thing would have fizzled out. Unfortunately, that is what happens to a lot of bloggers.
WordPress is the world’s most popular CMS (content management system). It powers 27%+ of all websites online today, and an even larger percentage of blogs. (You’ll find more insane WordPress statistics over here).
Something I’ve been noticing is that blogging SEO is changing, but only in some ways. It’s almost like a car in that the design, colors and minor features change each year but the core remains the same. In this case the core is back links and the features are things like freshness, authorship, mobile-friendliness and so on.
Informational. News, content curation and other information. Product review videos are very popular. For example videos where people are filmed taking products out of the box. Similar with “haul” videos where people show what products they have bought in shops.
If you’re using your existing WordPress blog to sell plugins, you’ll want to make sure that the plugin you create directly fulfills a need of your audience. You can survey them to see what problems they need to solve on their WordPress site, and then create a plugin that solves that problem.
When you put the AdSense code on your blog you have a choice of the style of advertisements (large images, small images, text, etc.) and also where they are placed. The more prominently the ads are displayed the more likely they are to be clicked.
Visual content has been growing for years and it appears to be speeding up, not slowing down. We now have retina display tablets and our smartphones are getting bigger. Social networking sites like Facebook are favoring images and videos over text – never mind sites like Pinterest which are totally based around photos! If you’re not working with visual content yet it’s time to start.
“Permalinks” are the words that appear in the URLs for your blog posts and pages. They help search engines, like Google, find your blog posts more easily. This gives you a better chance of being indexed for the keywords that will drive traffic to your blog.
The downside is your domain will look a little different: You’ll have janicerunsfast.wordpress.com rather than janicerunsfast.com. (You can upgrade through WordPress.com to eliminate “wordpress” in your domain, but it will cost you a few dollars.)