Hi Jamie, some great post you have here on your site! I will be coming back to read it a few times because it’s packed with information… Btw I also know some bloggers who swear they gained the most of their profits by advertising through the email list, it’s such a powerful tool. What are your thoughts on this?
No. With HostGator you only pay for Domain & Hosting (this is needed for setting up a blog for others to read & browse). WordPress itself is a free blogging platform. But in order to make it work – you’ll need hosting & domain which you can both get from HostGator.
The point is, most people are afraid to charge more than $200 for a class, believing that’s all people can afford, but it’s just not true. Every market has customers who are and willing to pay for a premium experience. Give them one.
Start with the basics, relax and have fun with it! Over time, if you put in the effort and follow this advice, you’ll build up your readership and even start making money from your blog if you chose to go that route.
You will need an email marketing service to get started. By far the easiest and most reliable that I have found is Constant Contact, which offers a free trial of their services for new bloggers. I have put together a complete step-by-step tutorial on how to use Constant Contact with your blog.
However, you’re not going to get far competing with those heavyweights, so you need to drill down into your target audience and focus on a subset of those people. By narrowing your focus to a niche (sometimes called an angle), your blog now has room to compete for eyeballs.
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.
Writing a post contains 2000 – 3000 words may be a bit difficult to me. But i must realize that nothing can be achieved without hard working. If we write a long valuable content like this, there is a great chance for bookmarking the page. So it is a great innovative strategy.
Great post, thank you! I found this to be very useful. I have just got into the Pay Per Click method and it is a great way of building a passive income. Due to my niche, I have found it difficult to source good affiliate networks, but just today I have revisited the accounts I set up on Link Share and CJ, to my surprise they offer a good range of affiliate programs, many of which cater to my niche blog topic 🙂
NOTE: At WPBeginner 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.
The top partner has the first shot to fill an ad – if they don’t – they “pass back” that ad request to Adsense (since Adsense is a 100% fill solution but tends to have lower CPMs than other ad networks).
Wow really great list of tips, even for non beginners! I agree Ahrefs is probably the best SEO tool for bloggers, but honestly Google Webmaster Tools is the first place to start to monitor your search traffic. Ahref is really expensive, and for new comers, probably overkill. I recently started a new blog, and am more than happy with the data provided by Webmaster Tools.
It might sound silly at first, but you don’t actually own your blog. It’s hosted on someone else’s web property and they can delete it if they want so. They have done so in the past, and keep doing it in the future. Which means all your hard work on your blog, all those countless hours of writing blog posts might be vanished within seconds. Sad…
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. 🙂

As always, a fantastic post Jon. Have just shared on G+ with the comment that you are simply the best at what you do. I love your style, and the practical advice is invaluable. I was particularly interested in your downplay of using twitter, FB etc to hope to grow your blog, but what you said makes total sense. As someone who is building an author’s platform prior to publication, I’d been hesitant to sell products, but no more. Thanks so much for your inspiration.
If you were to start a travel blog today and work really hard at it (around 3 – 5 focused hours / day), then there’s no reason that you couldn’t start earning around $500 / month from it after 6 months. For travellers, that’s a pretty good chunk of change!
Note: Even though a self-hosted WordPress blog is sometimes referred to as a “WordPress.org” blog, you are not limited to a .org at the end of your name. You can still use .com, just like I do for AmyLynnAndrews.com.
You brought up some really good points in your posting. I’ve been a blogger for @ 12 hours now and I’m thankful to get glimpse of the full scope of the blogging world. Your posts informed me on the importance of “guest posting”. I have not even heard of that. Thank you and I’ll be out on other blogs posting.
It’s secure; WordPress is always updating their software and keeping everything sound and secure, so there’s rarely a worry of having your blog come under hacking attacks. No wonder Facebook, NASA, and even university blogs are using WordPress.
It was interesting to see the diagram wheel picture in tip one with all the different domains that are used. Self-hosted WordPress seems to be the most popular. Do you think it has to do with how you can customize it the way you want the most compared to the other domains? I’m wanting to start my blog of dancing. I sincerely appreciate all of these additional ideas to get my blog started!
Thanks for posting this. I am a new blogger and I would actually love to start vlogging. I don’t know what I am waitng on. I keep making up all types of exscuses. I think I am just afraid of how I may sound in front of the camera and afraid of messing up. I do believe that vlogging is a good way to bring more traffic to your blog and a way for your readers to know you better. So I will keep all these great tips in mind as I get started on my journey to become a vlogger.
The bad news is that going for a run or to the gym at the end of the day does not undo the damage. This means we need to start moving regularly, working while standing up and taking regular short breaks to stretch the muscles and get the blood flowing.
As I’ve said before, the one prediction I have for people using a free blog host is that one day you will want to migrate it to your own host. And that can be a really annoying process. It’s much better to set yourself up the right way from the beginning.
You can begin accepting donations in a few different ways. You could add a Paypal donate button or a Stripe donate button to your website. Or for a more professional look and advanced features like email marketing integration, you could use WPForms to create a donation form on your WordPress site.
A domain name for a carpentry blog of “ibuildthingsoutofwood.com” may sound detailed and specific, but it’s actually too long and hard to remember. “Learncarpentry.com” is much shorter, specific, descriptive, and uses valuable keywords.
Thank you for all this information! Is a cooking blog a good subject for a profitable blog or is it better to go write about general subject like relationship for example. In that case what would be the way to have affiliation? Also is there a way to target a specific country? Is English the language to use preferably or French is good aswell?