If you've ever wondered how to start a blog, and done any sort of research, you'll know that it can be quite overwhelming knowing what direction to take.
Owning a blog is an exciting and rewarding experience, and they can be incredibly lucrative, but often times knowing actually how to start a blog is what stops most people.
And not only is it overwhelming trying to figure out how to start, you need to work out all the other factors involved in a blogging venture:
- What do I blog about?
- How to I make money blogging?
- How do I make sure I get traffic to my blog?
- Is a WordPress Blog best?
And the list goes on!
Luckily for you, this guide goes through all of the above questions and many more.
This blog post is going to be split into different sections to help you navigate and learn how to start a blog the right way.
It is highly likely that you will need to come back to this guide a number of times, so go ahead and bookmark it so you cant find it again later.
What are the Benefits of Blogging?
Blogging has become incredibly popular over the years, and there are plenty of reasons why. We'll cover the pros and cons of blogging later in this guide, but for now here are some of the benefits of blogging that make it an amazing business model.
It's a Creative Outlet
Many people find writing to be a great way to express themselves and share their thoughts and feelings with the world. Blogging is an excellent way to do this, as you can start a blog about anything you're passionate about.
You Can Make Money Blogging
If your blog gains traction, you can monetize it by selling advertising space, partnering with brands, or even creating your own products. We'll get more into this later in this article (in great detail).
Build an Online Presence
Blogging is a great way to build an online presence and connect with an audience interested in what you have to say. This lets you establish yourself as an authority in your niche.
Grow Your Network
You can reach out to other bloggers and develop relationships through blogging. This can help you grow your blog.
Learn New Things
The natural process of blogging involves researching for new content you are creating. This is a great way to learn while you are actually doing something.
How to Choose a Blogging Niche
Choosing the right niche for your blog is one of the most important steps in setting up your blog but first...
What is a niche?
A niche is a segment of an overall market. Like dog lovers, for example. Or golf enthusiasts. Or people that enjoy fishing. The opportunities are endless, but picking a niche is probably the most important part of the process.
Let's discuss the critical factors involved in choosing a niche for your blog.
Broad or Narrow
You can either go broad, like dog lovers, or narrow, like French Bulldog lovers.
Both topics are great, but the more narrow you go with your niche, the more of an expert in the field you will become (over time).
When choosing a niche for your blog, it's generally important to something that you're interested in. You're going to have to write about the topic for many years, so you want to make sure you don't get bored.
You'll also need to know what you're talking about, otherwise readers won't be engaged and will look elsewhere for the answers they seek.
In order to drive enough traffic to make money with your blog, there needs to be enough demand. You can assess demand by looking at Google Trends, and checking Google search volumes with a free tool like Ubersuggest or Answer the public.
Consider what topics you can write about on an ongoing basis. If you pick a niche that is too narrow, you may quickly run out of content ideas.
It's also important to choose a niche that is competitive but not oversaturated. This means that there is still room to stand out and make your blog unique.
Check out the competition. What are other blogs in your niche talking about? What can you do differently to stand out among the competition? Determine if there's a good mix of competitive and non-competitive bloggers in your niche.
Ensure you pick a niche that is relevant to your goals. If your goal is to monetize your blog, pick a niche that has products and services related to it. If you're trying to build an audience, you'll want to choose a popular niche that people are already talking about.
We go more into the different methods for monetizing your blog later in this guide.
What's a Good Name for a Blog?
Choosing a name for your blog is one of the most important steps in setting up a successful blog. It's the first thing readers will see, it sets the tone for your blog, and it's not something you can (or should) change later if you can help it!
Here's some tips when it comes to choosing a name for your blog:
Make it Memorable
Make sure your blog name is memorable and easy to spell. Avoid complicated words or phrases that can be difficult to remember or spell correctly.
You want readers to easily recall your blog name and find it simply by typing it into a search engine.
Make it Relevant (Sort of)
Choosing a name that is relevant to the content of your blog is important however, you could also go with a totally random word or more of a 'branded' name. Take for example rageagainsttheminivan.com. It's catchy and cool, but it might not be totally obvious what it's about at first.
(Hint: it's a Mom blog)
Creating something unique will also help you stand out from the crowd and create a nice little brand for yourself.
Make Sure the Name and URL is Available
Search online to ensure the blog's name is not already being used. This might force you to create unique name for your blog, because so many "dot com" domain names are taken.
And this brings me to my next point, the domain name needs to be available too!
What are the Features of a Good Domain Name for a Blog?
Choosing a domain name for your blog can be both an enjoyable exercise and a very frustrating experience. You might find that so many domain names are either not available, or they're for sale for a hefty price tag.
Your domain name should reflect the content and purpose of your blog so that readers can quickly identify what your blog is about. A good domain name should be short, memorable, and easy to spell. It should be relevant to your blog's content without being too long or overly descriptive.
A good domain name fulfills SEO considerations such as using top-level domain extensions, avoiding hyphens and numbers in a domain name, if possible.
Consider words or phrases that describe the content of your blog. Try to use words that have an emotional connection to your blog, such as a geographical or cultural reference. You can get ideas from online domain name generators to get your creative juices flowing.
My favorite domain name generator tool is Lean Domain Search. Check it out, it's completely free to use and might help you find a great, relevant domain.
One huge rule with domains is try to get the ".com" extension. If this one is not available, the ".net" or ".org" are ok, but you may be better off trying to find the dot com version by adding an extra word.
"websitename.com" might not be available, so you should try for something like "mywebsitename.com" or "thewebsitename.com".
Whatever you do, avoid the new random domain name extensions like ".xyz". They don't build trust and will impact on the success of your site.
Where Can I Buy a Domain Name Cheap?
There's certainly no shortage of domain name vendors out there. A couple of the best, and most affordable, are below.
Namecheap - my personal favorite.
Namesilo - my second favorite.
GoDaddy - a bit more expensive but they are a trusted name.
Many domain name vendors offer great deals for first time buyers, and they often include things such as free privacy protection and domain forwarding.
NameCheap is one of the most popular and reliable services, in my opinion. It offers competitive prices and excellent customer support.
Choosing Web Hosting for Your Blog
Web hosting is a big one, and a very important topic. Your web hosting is where your site lives on the internet and trust me when I say, not all web hosting providers are the same.
There's a lot to take into consideration when selecting a hosting provider for your blog. The most important consideration is the provider's reliability and reputation. A web hosting service that has been in business for a long time is also something that needs to be taken into consideration.
One huge problem in our industry is the fact that so many bloggers will recommend a host that pays out the best affiliate commissions. This is why you might see Bluehost being mentioned a lot.
I've used Bluehost before and while they are ok, I don't find them overly easy to use and the customer support is average at best. They are helpful, but not always knowledgeable.
I had a bad experience trying to migrate a site with Bluehost so I decided that they really aren't my go-to choice after that.
I have two recommendations for bloggers when it comes to choosing the right host.
My first is for more budget conscious people, where I recommend Siteground.
My second is for those wanting to spend a little more (it's still pretty cheap) for a premium service, which is WPX hosting.
Let's take a quick look at both options.
Siteground Hosting - Overview
SiteGround is a popular web hosting provider that's you get your blog up and running quickly and easily, and they offer quite affordable hosting plans.
Siteground has an attractive price tag of just $2.99 per month, but this price is only applicable if you pay for one year in advance. And there is a fine print. Needless to say, Siteground competes on price with many other low cost hosting providers and they are a bit sketchy, in my opinion.
These low cost hosting providers lack transparency. I still think Siteground is a decent host if you are on a budget, but I really don't like how they operate.
So, back to the pricing. They charge $2.99 per month but you need to pay for one year which is $35.88., which is just for one website. Still a pretty great price. But keep reading.
Now what I don't like here is that the fine print states that you need to pay "regular renewal prices" after your first 12 months. You can't find this price ANYWHERE, so I went onto their support/sales chat.
Support was very helpful, and they informed me that the regular renewal price for Siteground is $179.88 per year, which works out to $14.99 per month. But again, you need to renew for the entire year.
When signing up for Siteground you will also be offered many add-ons and upsells. This is how these cheap web hosting companies make their money. Take for example the "site scanner" for an extra $2.49 a month. This is just a gimmick! Hosting providers like WPX include all this kind of stuff.
WPX Hosting - Overview
WPX is founded by a guy named Terry Kyle and they are based out of Bulgaria. If you're interested in reading more about Terry's passion, you can do so here at Every Dog Matters.
The money he makes from his hosting company goes towards saving stray and abandoned dogs. This is a heartwarming and inspiring story which makes me happy to support them.
The cheapest WPX plan is $24.99 per month, or $20.83 per month if you pay annually (works out to 2 months free). This is called their "Business" plan.
This plan gives you up to 5 websites, so it really is fantastic value.
If you want more than 5 sites, they have a Professional plan for $49.99 per month which gives you 15 sites, or you can opt for the $99 per month "Elite" plan which allows up to 3 websites.
I highly recommend WPX for any users, even though it works out to be a bit more expensive than Siteground.
WPX FEATURES & Support
By far the best thing about WPX is their support. You can jump on to the live chat and you are talking to an actual person within one minute. Literally, no exaggeration. I've never seen anything like it.
And they are super knowledgeable. They are all local to Bulgaria where the company is based. The owner is actually an Australian guy, Terry Kyle (who we mentioned before).
They speak great English, they know their stuff and they are the most helpful out of any customer support for any software or hosting that I've experienced. Hands down.
In terms of features, WPX give you 5 websites with their entry level plan, and all plans have the following features:
- Free SSL certificate
- Free Malware Removal
- 30 seconds average support response time
- Free site speed optimization
- 99.9% uptime guarantee
That last point is so important. You will find that other services, cheaper web hosting, will be down a lot more. Siteground is good but it still doesnt compare to WPX.
What is WordPress and Why do we Use it to Start a Blog?
WordPress is a versatile, user-friendly content management system (CMS) that is ideal for those just starting in the world of blogging. It really is the simplest and most powerful blogging and website content management system available today.
Just to be clear, there are "two types" of WordPress. We are using WordPress.org which we are "self-hosting". Essentially this means we pay for our own hosting company, WPX or Siteground, and we install the WordPress environment on to our hosting. This is easy, so don't fret.
There's also a separate, stand-alone platform called WordPress.com which is different. We don't use that, because it doesnt give us the flexibility we need to build our blog site. I've explained that a little more in the next section.
WordPress is incredibly customizable and offers a wide selection of themes, plugins, and widgets. These allow us to define the look and feel of our blog or website without any coding or design experience.
With a few clicks of the mouse, you can easily add posts, pages, and images to your new blog site.
Using WordPress as our CMS on our own self-hosted website allows us to monetize our blog or website through its integration with various advertising platforms like Google Adsense or Ezoic. But more on that later, in the monetization section.
WordPress.com vs WordPress.org
WordPress as a content management system (CMS) is free. And a huge chunk of the internet is powered by it. People often get confused when they see WordPress.com and WordPress.org, so I'm going to explain that in simple terms.
WordPress.com is a hosted WordPress website. So you have to pay for that, as it's an all-in-one package that includes the hosting.
The downside to this is that it provides less flexibility, so we don't go down that route. It's great for hobby bloggers that just want to write and don't want to worry about installing plugins, designing a custom-looking site and optimizing their blog for SEO.
That's not to say that a WordPress.com site can't be optimized because they can and they have evolved a lot. But they just can't do everything that we want to do in the long-run.
WordPress.org on the other hand is essentially just the WordPress software that we install on our own hosting. What we end up with is a self hosted WordPress blog.
This gives us full flexibility to change things and install plugins and so forth. This also doesn't mean it requires any serious technical knowledge. Pretty much everything you need to know, you will learn in this blog post right here! It's not that difficult.
If you join my Facebook Group, you can ask any questions you like in there, too.
How do I Choose a Theme for My WordPress Blog?
Choosing a suitable theme for your WordPress blog is an important step in setting up your site. It sets the tone for how visitors will experience your content.
A good theme should be easy to use, well-designed, and it should be fast loading. It should also provide various features to help you deliver an enjoyable experience for your readers.
When you first launch your site, you'll see that there's a standard free theme already installed. you will definitely want to change this.
I always recommend the GeneratePress theme for new blogs. It's free, lightweight, and easy to customize. It also has premium, but affordable, version which allows a heap of extra features.
A well-designed theme enhances the user experience and makes it easier for readers to find the content they need.
The theme should be responsive. Mobile devices are where a lot of your traffic will come from, so your blog needs to look great on any device, from laptop to mobile.
We will cover how to install a theme on your WordPress site in the technical setup section of this blog article.
Why do I love GeneratePress? Well, it's clean, it looks great, and it's easy to use. GeneratePress is also a lightweight and mobile-friendly theme, perfect for anyone looking for an easy-to-use and fast-loading theme.
Site speed is very important for your blog site, which is a more technical topic that we will write about later, but the good news it that GeneratePress is nice and fast.
GeneratePress is by far one of the best free wordpress themes, so take a look at it if you are interested.
When you're ready, GeneratePress also has a premium version for only $59 per year (or $249 lifetime) which has some amazing added features.
When you're just starting out, you can get by with the free version though if you are on a budget.
What are WordPress Plugins and Why do I Need Them?
A plugin is like an add-on for your website. Think of them as an app that you install on your site to add extra features and functionality to your blog.
WordPress has a "marketplace" of plugins that you access from within your own WordPress dashboard, but some also require a download from the plugin creator and then an upload into your website. This is not a difficult task and we will cover that in the technical setup section of this article.
Let's explore some of the plugins that we recommend using for your new blog.
What are Some Basic WordPress Plugins that Every Blog Must Have?
You definitely need a small handful of plugins, but try and avoid the temptation of loading your site up with a heap of plugins. They will slow your site down, and site speed matters!
There's are some essential WordPress plugins that all blogs should have such as Yoast SEO, Site Kit, Elementor Free, and WP Forms.
We will cover how to install plugins on your WordPress blog later, but for now let's explore some of the most common plugins and what they do.
Yoast helps you optimize your content for search engines and gives you tips on how to improve your content and your site for organic traffic. It guides you through creating SEO-friendly titles, meta descriptions, and URLs for your content.
It also analyzes your content to ensure that your content is optimized for search engine ranking. Its keyword suggestions will boost the SEO friendliness of the content. It includes an XML sitemap generator and an RSS Feed generator to help you maximize your reach.
Site Kit is a free plugin from Google that helps you connect your new blog to Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Using these tools helps you understand how your website is performing and how it can be improved.
You can use Site Kit to monitor and analyze your website's traffic, find out which sources drive the most visitors, and determine how well your content resonates with users. Site Kit also helps you measure your website's speed.
Elementor is a page builder that simplifies the customization of the look and feel of your blog. It provides a drag-and-drop interface and a wide selection of features, including templates, widgets, and more. You can change font styles, colors, and sizes, add background images, and even incorporate animations.
With Elementor Free, you can create a lovely blog without learning to code. The free version has limitations compare to the premium version, but it is still very good.
I will say this though. You probably don't need Elementor to start with. You may not even need it at all, unless you have a specific need to change your blog design dramatically.
WP Forms is an easy-to-use contact form builder that lets you collect visitors' information. It allows you to create custom forms, such as contact forms, feedback forms, surveys, and polls. You can also include a captcha to protect your form from spam and unwanted messages. You can customize the look and feel of the form with different themes and colors. WP Forms has other features, such as email notifications, conditional logic, and form abandonment tracking. You can set up notifications to alert you when a form submission is received.
What is Keyword Research and How Does it Work?
Now we've introduced you to the technical requirements to start a blog site, we can move on to the theory behind creating content and driving traffic.
When you write content on your new blog, you need to do it with "keywords" in mind. A keyword is something that someone types into Google, Bing, or whatever their favorite search engine is.
Keyword research involves finding the best phrases and words related to a particular topic that let you create engaging content for readers and search engines.
When you do your keyword research properly, you can optimize your blog content to rank higher on the search engine results pages (SERPs) and attract more readers to your blog.
When people perform a web search, they have what's called "intent". They have a goal, a final objective. There's a number different types of keyword intent that you need to be aware of.
Some experts will say theres 10 types, but that's really getting granular.
We've gone for the 4 most common types of keyword search intents that you should know about.
Users are searching for information, or asking a question. Example: "How many times a day should I feed my dog?" They aren't looking to buy dog food, they just want information on how best to feed their dog.
Users might be searching for a very specific page on the internet, like "wordpress login". Sometimes it's easier just to search for the exact page you want to find, right?
People use search engines to research products, brands, and services all the time. A typical commercial search might be "Ford F150 vs Ram 1500". This indicates that the searcher is looking to buy a vehicle, which is commercial intent, and they are researching in order to help them make their buying decision.
Transactional searches indicate that the user has their wallet out and they are ready to make a purchase! This might look something like "buy iPhone Dallas". It's pretty clear that they want to make a purchase very soon.
Short-Tail vs Long-Tail Keywords
So now you know about the intent that users have when they search the internet. But because SEO (search engine optimization) folk are nerdy, we've further defined keyword searches based on the length of the term.
Short Tail Keywords
A short tail keyword is something like "iPad". Or even "buy iPad". One to three words, max. These are typically the most searched terms, but they are also the most difficult search terms to rank for, and they can sometimes be quite broad or generic.
Long Tail Keywords
You've probably figured out how this works now. Long-tail keywords are search terms with 3 or more words, and they tend to be a lot more specific than short tail keywords.
Long tail keywords will have lower search volume, but they can be a lot easier to rank for.
An example of a long tail keywords might be "best dog food for a diabetic dog". This is a very specific search query it will have a lot less search volume than "best dog food" (short tail) but if you can rank your article for this term, you'll probably sell a lot of diabetic friendly dog food!
Keyword Research Tools
Researching keywords is essential for any successful blog. Knowing exactly what words people are searching for and how to target those terms is key to driving organic traffic to your blog.
Fortunately, there are plenty of free tools that you can use to get started. Some of them cost quite a bit, but they are well worth it on the long-run, but there's also some low cost and free keyword research tools that you should consider.
Two of the most popular free tools are Answer the Public and UberSuggest.
Using Answer the Public and UberSuggest for Free Keyword Research
Answer the Public is a keyword research tool that lets you determine the questions people are asking about a particular topic and the terms used to search for that topic. This can be extremely useful when figuring out the kind of content you should be creating. It also provides an easy way to find long-tail keywords, which can be even more effective for driving organic traffic to your blog.
UberSuggest is another great keyword research tool. It reveals the competitiveness of a particular keyword and its frequency of search. It allows you to plug in a keyword or phrase and see a list of related terms and phrases people are searching for. This will enable you to choose keywords likely to effectively drive organic traffic to your blog.
One of the better tools, however, is SEMrush. It does cost $199.95 per month but you can get a free 7-day trial which is very worthwhile. When you are ready, claim your free 7-day trial and do all your keyword research in one hit.
Writing Blog Posts
They say that content is king, and the more Google updates their algorithm the more this rings true. Of course there's other factors that impact SEO, but if you don't write good content then you are wasting time and money optimizing your site in other areas.
In order to write a good blog post, you need to know your topic. This means you should have also done some serious competitor research.
The main objective of your blog posts is to answer whatever query is being searched by your audience.
Like the previous example "best dog food for a diabetic dog", if you write an amazing article full of helpful information then you are positioning yourself for success.
Your article needs to be more than just a list of dog food brands. It needs to actually provide a user with useful information about each food and why it might benefit their diabetic dog.
Different Types of Blog Posts?
Knowing the different types of posts helps you structure your content, plan, and engage meaningfully with your readers.
There's many different types of articles you can write, but here are 6 of the most common types of posts you should know about:
How To Posts
One of the most common blog posts is the "How To" post. This blog post gives readers step-by-step instructions on how to accomplish a task. They are usually full of pictures, videos, and helpful resources and are great for topics that require technical knowledge.
Keep in mind that writing a How To post, it is important to provide a useful solution to a "how to" search query. This might seem obvious, but simply writing a How To post about a topic doesn't mean the traffic will come. It needs to be quality content, as with any content on your blog.
How To Post Title Examples:
How to Clean a Fish Tank Without Chemicals
How to Design an Ebook in Canva [Free Template]
The list post, or listicle as it's often called, is a popular blog post format that lists a series of solutions to a search query.
One common issue online is the lack of quality in some list posts. They just try and list out as many possible solutions as possible, rather than providing quality answers.
"Listicle Post" Title Examples:
Top 10 Dog Breeds for Families with Young Children
12 of the Best Social Media Posts to go Viral
A roundup post is an article containing curated information from external sources. A roundup post is also often referred to as a curated post, and it may contain quotes from experts, statistics, links to other blogs and much more.
If done correctly, a roundup post can not only captivate readers but it can help you develop a relationship with other industry influencers or figures of importance.
"Roundup Post" Title Examples:
5 Bloggers You Need to Follow in 2023
12 Social Media Stats That'll Blow Your Mind
A comparison post, as you can probably guess, compares two or more things. Similar to a review post, a comparison post provides detailed information in its comparison in order to help the reader make a choice.
"Comparison Post" Title Examples:
ClickFunnels vs Kajabi - Which Landing Page Software is Best?
YouTube Shorts vs Instagram Reels - Which is Better for Food Influencers?
You've no doubt heard of clickbait before and, well, linkbait is similar in that it is designed to attract attention, but there is one huge difference.
Clickbait is designed to "trick" people into clicking. Linkbait needs to be so darn valuable that people are climbing over each other to link to it. This is the main idea behind a linkbait post, to attract backlinks from other websites.
In order to successfully pull-off a linkbait post, you need to create content that naturally attracts links from other websites.
Defining exactly how to create a linkbait post isn't an easy task but if I can tell you one thing, it has to be an exceptional piece of content.
Try and think about what compels you to link to an article or website, and replicate that!
"Linkbait Post" Title Examples:
67 Spring Fashion Trends for Men
23 Floor Rug Ideas for Your Man Cave
Finding Images to Use in Your Blog Posts
Using quality visuals in your blog posts improves engagement with readers. However, finding the right images can be difficult and, sometimes, expensive.
The number one best way to find images for your blog is to actually create them yourself. This makes them unique to you, and they may even attract links from other blogs.
Creating your own images isn't always easy, so luckily for you theres a heap of different online resources where you can get images from.
Unsplash is a great place to start, as they have a vast library of high-quality, royalty-free images in various styles and subjects.
Another great resource for free images is Pexels, which offers a wide selection of stunning photos and illustrations. Many of the pictures on Pexels are taken by professionals, so you're sure to find a high-quality image to suit your needs. You can also use their helpful filters to find the perfect image for your blog.
Pixabay offers everything from abstract and vintage designs to beautiful landscapes and cityscapes. Pixabay also offers vector illustrations and videos that you can use to enhance your blog posts visually.
How to Promote Your Blog
The main way of driving traffic to your blog is always going to be through search engine optimization (SEO), which is a fancy way of saying free traffic from search engines.
The one drawback of SEO is that it takes time so when you first start a blog, SEO is a waiting game.
That's why many bloggers, both new and experienced, look to other methods of promoting their own blogs.
Let's take a look at the various ways you can promote your new blog and drive more traffic
One great way to promote your blog is through various social media platforms. Some work better than others, but the best suggestion I can make to you is to pick one platform and focus on it for a while. Don't be tempted to jump around and try dabbling here and there.
Paying influencers with many followers can help your blog and give it a big, sustained boost in traffic and potentially backlinks, but please be careful who you choose to promote your blog. Not all traffic is good traffic!
One of the most popular social platforms amongst bloggers is Pinterest. Pinterest SEO is a strategy in itself, but it's not overly difficult.
If you don't mind getting in front of the camera, posting on TikTok is an amazing way to drive traffic too.
Guest blogging is a popular technique to promote not only your blog, but yourself as an authoritative figure. Guest blogging works by reaching out to other blog owners in your niche, or a closely related one, and offering to write an article for their blog. You then get credited as the author and you will be able to link back to your own blog (backlink). This will help you build relationships online and will also contribute to your own online reputation.
Publishing your own podcast or being a guest on other podcasts is a great way to promote your blog. The more you get your name out there, the more exposure your blog will get.
If you want to make things more efficient, create a podcast episode for every blog article you make. You might need to tweak the article into a script a little bit so it sounds natural, but it shouldn't take you long.
Email marketing is one of the most powerful ways to connect with your audience and generate revenue, but it's a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Any successful blog online will build an email list, but if your blog is not yet getting any traffic then it's hard to build an email list.
You could also pay other people with big email lists to promote your blog to their list, but there might be better ways to spend your money initially.
If you're looking for a good email software, you may want to check out my MailerLite Review. It's a great piece of software that you can start using for free.
Blogging with Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence has taken the world by storm recently, but the impact that AI content has on SEO has been debated widely.
On one hand, SEO has opened the door for many bloggers to product content much more efficiently. On the other hand however, there's some serious question around how well AI generated performs in the search engines.
There's even a heap of new software tools that are designed to detect AI content.
The golden rule to keep in mind when creating any content, AI or otherwise, is to answer searcher's questions and provide helpful content to your readers.
Let's take a look at some of the cool AI tools you can use for blogging.
AI Tools for Blogging
Not only are there copywriting tools that bloggers can use, there's a heap of other AI powered tools that can help in your blogging business.
One of the original AI copywriting tools, Jasper first launched onto the scene as "Conversion AI". They then changed names to Jarvis before changing again to Jasper, due to copyright issues with Disney and their character named Jarvis.
What's great about Jasper AI is that it has packaged up all sorts of frameworks and prompts into "templates".
Templates make it easier to perform certain tasks like creating a blog post outline, creating content for landing pages or ads, creating blog post ideas, right through to writing an entire blog post.
Surfer is great to help optimize articles and links on your website so you can generate more organic traffic.
Surfer isn't a copywriting tool, its more of a blog optimization tool that assesses your entire site and provides suggested topics, internal link structures and more.
Focussing on spelling and grammar enhancements, Grammarly is one of the original AI-powered tools used by bloggers and writers.
As Grammarly's tech has grown, the tool has added AI-powered writing style suggestions such as clarity and tone. Grammarly also offers re-write suggestions to help you improve your content.
Best Ways to Monetize Your Blog
Many successful bloggers make a very substantial income from blogging, usually by managing more than one website. The great thing about blogging is that you can monetize your site and start making money in many different ways.
Let's explore some of the best ways to make money blogging:
Many blogs focus on making money through affiliate marketing, which is essentially promoting other peoples products or services in exchange for a commission.
Have you ever seen those random ads on a website that seem to follow you around the internet? They're display ads, sometimes called banner ads.
Website owners can sign up to different ad networks and get paid when site visitors click on ads that are placed on their websites.
Sell Digital Products
Digital products like ebooks, canva templates, and apps or software are great ways to make money from your blog. If the products are your own, you'll also need a payment system like Thrivecart to accept payment and facilitate in the delivery of your products.
Sell Physical Products
If your blog is suitable to do so, physical products can be a fantastic way to make money. Popular gardening blog Epic Gardening makes a huge chunk of their revenue from selling physical products like garden beds, seedlings, and gardening tools.
Sell an Online Course
The online education market is fast approaching the estimated $238billion by 2027. If you have skills that you can pass on to others, which you are likely to have if you are running your own blog, then you should consider creating an online course.
Growing an email list is a very valuable asset for your business. Having a list of email contacts is a great way to sell more of your own products, affiliate products, and you can even sell advertising space in your email broadcasts.
Blogging Pros and Cons
I could seriously write a book on the pros and cons of blogging, but i'll try to keep it simple here!
Blogging is a great way to express yourself and improve your writing skills in general. Many people find it therapeutic writing blog posts on certain topics, especially if you are passionate about the niche you are in.
Build a Following
Blogging is a great way to grow your own personal or business profile and build a loyal following. The whole crux of blogging is to provide useful content to your audience and in turn, they generally grow to like you and will follow you.
Make Money "Passively"
Passive income is a term thrown around a lot on the internet, but I truly believe blogging is one of the closest forms of passive income. You can write articles that can make you money for years to come, but as with any business you do always need to keep your finger on the pulse and keep your blog up to date and relevant.
It Takes Time
When you first start a blog, it can take quite a while for it to start ranking on Google and bringing in search engine traffic. This is probably the one thing that stops most people from blogging, the lack of quick results.
Some Knowledge is Required
I am a big believer that you do not need to be an expert to start a blog, but you do need some technical knowledge to make it work. Most of what you need to know is right here in this guide, the rest will come with time and experience.
Some niches can be incredibly competitive and quite frankly, are not even worth tackling. Many people make the mistake of going after the most competitive niches and keywords because they are also very lucrative. The truth is, you can make money blogging in small and obscure niches too. You just need to do your research.
How to Start a Blog - In Summary
There's a lot of moving parts when it comes to starting your own blog, but once you've been through the process once it gets much easier.
My advice is to take it one step at a time, bookmark or download this step-by-step guide, and set yourself a time frame to get your first blog launched.
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