I will quibble on one point though, your comment about BBT getting 13,000 subscribers before launching even though you “had nothing but a coming soon page and an invitation to join our email list.” As I recall, you also had a freakin’ awesome video on that page as well that just made people yearn to give you their email address, even without knowing a thing about BBT. So that didn’t hurt, either. ; )
As usual a top knotch post full of excellent advice, very easy to understand and follow. Just studying your posts is an object lesson in how these things are done. I, like many aspiring bloggers, am very familiar with the glazed look that passes over people’s faces when I attempt to explain what my plans are! I think the primary problem is that we have been brought up to do business in a particular way. You make something therefore you get paid for it. Most business people feel there is something inherently wrong about a system where you provide huge amounts of valuable content free of charge and without obligation. The peception is that the model cannot be susstainable.
Know what you want. When you’re interviewing somebody for your site, always enter the interview knowing what story you want them to tell. Have a Skype chat or email exchange with them, before they’re in front of a camera. Do your due diligence: ask what they’re working on, and what interesting opinions they have, and agree in advance what you’ll ask them. During the interview is NOT when you should be deciding what questions to ask.
Hosting: Hosting is basically the company that puts your website up on the internet so everyone else can see it. Everything will be saved on there. Think of it as a computer hard-drive on the internet where your blog will be saved.
Great article about blogging. This is very helpful. I have been blogging about fashion for my Apparel Search website for many years, but have not received much traction for the efforts. Hopefully your suggestions will be of help. Even though I post often and I think with helpful information for people interesting in clothing, I don’t seem to gain any followers. After several years, I have people reading the blogs, but no followers and not many people posting comments. Rather frustrating, but I will continue my efforts. Anyway, thank you for your post and hopefully it helps me and others improve our blogging.
Our blog actually covers travel tips and insights into expat life along the Oaxacan coast of Mexico, so I am not sure that those sites would be the target audience for our blog’s content even if they were more accessible, which clearly they aren’t.
When you click that blue button you’ll be taken to our guide to starting a blog. Once you buy your domain name, we’ll hook you up with our $20 Pro Blogging ebook totally free! This book will help you to start earning money from travel blogging and turn your travel blogging hobby into a career.
First of all the guide very easy and I started my blog using this guide only. But I have a doubt. I started blog using WordPress with a free account and now I want to upgrade my account so that I can use plugins for optimizing my site to get more traffic and after that monetize my site. So the doubt I have is what is the difference between a HostGator plan and a WordPress plan that I can buy directly on the WordPress website.
if you are good at illustration or design then there are lots of opportunities to offer your services to businesses or other bloggers. Whether that is creating infographics, logos or photo-editing you can use your blog to demonstrate your skills and pick up new clients.
I’m going to go with “handmade pet toys.” I can write about where to find them, how to make them, toy safety, toys based on your pet’s personality, etc. I can also tell stories about my own pets, start an Instagram or Twitter to feature pet photos, and review toys.
In theory, you can do that. But later you’d need to migrate/transfer your content from WordPress to HostGator and this can be pretty painful for someone who is not tech savvy. You could also upgrade directly from WordPress, but it’s 4x times more costly than using a hosting provider.
Another important thing to point out, which should be a bullet point for each of these, is social network integration. Blogger, for instance, is what I have been using for years and am now looking to move away from it because it has never done a good job of integrating with various social networks. Like, when sharing to Twitter it doesn’t even use a Twitter “card” so the only thing you see is an anonymous URL. Not very helpful when getting the word out about your latest blog post. Thanks for the great comparison, though. This has given me some good ideas on what to move to.
PRO TIP: If you choose a new domain extension, be sure to make sure your domain still passes the radio test! Most people online have still not heard of the new extensions, which is why we think they’re best treated with caution.
This is a lot of great information. I was a bit overwhelmed about all the different ways in which to start a blog but am feeling more confident now. Thanks for this! Looking forward to starting my blog soon.
I always encourage my friends to look at WPengine for hosting, its a bit more pricey but is really stable and reliable, plus they include tons of goodies that are usually considered a premium service and they all work without a struggle. Thinks like a CDN, Backups, Offload to S3. All these things can really help the quality and consistency of your site and are definitely something to think about whether you are a beginner or an advanced blogger.
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.
These are the topics that will have the attention of your target audience and you will be able to use their popularity to get some attention to yourself by tapping into them and creating content around them.
Hi Karen, I was just discovering blogging as a hobby to kill time, but your guide has enticed me into this inescapable world of blogging. I’ll definitely look forward to kick-start a blog soon. Thanks a ton!!!
From there, I went to work for other big blogs for a few years, helping grow Copyblogger and KISSmetrics into what they are today. Eventually though, I felt the itch to go out on my own again, so I left and started this blog. It now turns a fairly steady $100,000+ a month.
Hi Danielle. It looks like Facebook has removed the more detailed categories from the pages since this post was written – I just set up a test page and I don’t see the page type listed anywhere. You can choose the broad category “website” when setting up your page as mentioned above in the post, though.
My name is Scott Chow, and I am going to be your guide on this journey to building a successful blog. I have been building blogs and websites since 2002. In that time I have launched several of my own blogs, and helped hundreds of others do the same.
Ask friends, especially those with little knowledge about your topic. If you’re starting a travel photography blog, ask your friends, “What’s one question you’ve always had about photography? What do you wish you knew?”
In 2018 we plan to extend Inn8ly, a product we’re developing, into the blogging space. We have deep expertise building custom websites on the WordPress CMS but honestly we aren’t that expert in blogging so we’ve been and will be following what you are sharing with some interest.
Ever since I chatted to Chris Ducker on Skype last year I’ve been more and more looking to outsourcing as a way to get things done. There are a few reasons as to why this will be even more important in 2018.
If you ever want to switch to a better service (very common among those who start a free blog), it’s a hassle and can be costly. Doing it yourself takes a lot of time and know-how. Hiring someone to do it for you correctly costs hundreds of dollars.
Will it be possible to set up a blog where comments cannot be posted and emails cannot be sent to me? My only interest in blogging at this time is for a limited number of friends and family. I don’t want to deal with comments and such from random visitors.
Money. You should not start a blog to make money. We need to get that out of the way first. If your primary objective is to replace your full-time income from blogging, forget about it. It doesn’t work that way. Do you think that Jimi Hendrix picked up his first guitar so he could “supplement his income”? No, he didn’t. Rather, he did it for the love of it, for the joy and fulfillment he received, and the income came thereafter, much later actually.
Take this post for example — we’ve divided it by topic, using heading, subheadings and screenshots to break up the text. Since most readers will skim your posts, you want to make it easy for them to get the main points and decide to stick around for a closer read.
Second, while some people like to set up a regular Facebook profile with their blog name, it’s better to set up a fan page. That way your fans can “like” your blog without having to add you as a friend, and the page functions will be easier to control.
A great post, Ramsay, and great timing for me. I just went live with a coming soon page for my first website and blog that I plan to launch early next year. It’s great to read what your thoughts are on the future of blogging. I have to admit, I’ve been guilty of what you talk about in #19. I had planned to have my coming soon page up in October, but I was focusing on too many little things and got hung up. Now my challenge will be to not have the same thing happen with the main site.
Start by thinking carefully about the type of reader you’d like to have read your blog. You might like to create an avatar of that reader (sometimes called a reader persona or profile) to help you work out who you’re trying to attract.
Great information and all in one place too! Nowadays I see people are getting very creative in ways to make some extra money from home. I must say, you certainly help to solve this problem very beautifully. Nice guide for making money.
This is such an awesome content from Jon Morrow. It inspires me a lot and I hope other bloggers will be inspired too after reading these valuable and effective lessons on how to build a profitable blog. The lessons given are practical and are delivered wisely.
I have to agree with you and also put some emphasis on uniqueness. The most successful blogs today are definitely those that have an individual personal twist. People love new content and the more unique the likelihood that it will be shared more and draw in more people.
I think it was perhaps this article from Sydney about a study of 220,000 Australian residents who sat still for long periods. There have been a few follow up studies since that freaked me out, especially because it says exercise doesn’t undo all the bad blogging vibes!
PS: my answer to this question is always… “the better question is… how can my blog help me build a profitable business?” Most of the profits from blogging are not made on your blog, but that’s okay. I don’t believe blogging about making money per se, but about branding yourself and positioning yourself within your niche market as an authority and leader. Once that is established, there are so many ways to move people into your money making enterprises. Email marketing, as you pointed out, is one of the best ways to do this. Sending people to your membership sites, services, info products and coaching programs are all great things to route people into as well.
With dropshipping, you create the store, manage the website, and customer service. But a dropshipping service will take your orders and ship them out to your customers. They’re an invisible third party that your customers don’t even know about.
I’ve been through quite a lot with my days a blogger. I was making money, but it just wasn’t enough. You literally make pennies and dollars. That is not enough to support yourself. It wasn’t until I met Noah King. A mentor of mine who taught me how to make REAL MONEY online writing about what I love. I am now making $6000/month after a year of hard work and can do it all from the convenience of my home. Never give up or sell yourself short! Noah has his own website where he talks about how to achieve the same success he has. You can check him out here if you’re interested – http://www.deservingwriter.com/
Great information Ramsay! This is just what I was looking for. I wanted to start blogging as a way to create supplemental income in the future, as well as provide personal finance advice to young people like me. These are things like how I’ve made money in the stock and housing market in my 20’s.