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So you want to start a blog. Taking the leap can be frightening and overwhelming. When I was starting my blog I had no idea where to start, or what I really needed to invest in to be successful. After going through the journey, I’m here to offer some tips, tricks and advice on how to start a quality blog for as little money as possible!
First Thing’s First
If you want to start a blog I highly suggest you do! Anyone can write a blog about anything. Seriously. Anything. It’s so fulfilling to write content that people all over the world can see. The blogging community is so supportive – there are SOOOO many opportunities to meet and engage with new people! Plus, you can make money with your blog! You’ve probably heard it a thousands times, but blogging can actually be the source of your full time income. WHAAAAAT??? Who wouldn’t want that?
So now that we know that you need a blog here are a few things to consider before jumping in:
- What kind of “niche” do you want your blog to revolve around? A niche is a subject, category or focus for your blog. For instance, The Sweet Spender is a lifestyle blog – I write about everyday life, specifically how to save money! To choose a niche you need to decide what you’re most passionate about. What could you write about for years on end without getting tired? What is something that you’re especially good at that you could offer advice to others on?
- What is your end goal for your blog? Are you trying to make money with your blog, or are you simply trying to journal as a hobby? Either way is perfect – but it’s good to keep that goal in mind as you jump in.
- How much money are you willing to spend towards your blog? If your goal is to simply journal for a hobby, your budget might be pretty low. If you want to eventually make money with your blog, investing a little more is definitely more important for your success. That doesn’t mean you have to break the bank, but you do have to be willing to spend a few dollars to make sure your site is quality.
Okay, boo! Now that you’ve nailed down your focus, goals and budget, let’s get cracking!
If you’ve researched blogging at all, you’ve probably heard that WordPress is the only way to go… and it’s true. If you want to make money with your blog, I recommend starting with WordPress.org. It’s the bomb dot com for price, support, and profit. While free blog sites are great for releasing content, WordPress allows you to OWN your site, make money with ads and customize it like crazy.
To use WordPress.org you’ll need to get hosting! Web hosting simply means that you’ll need a server to carry all the information to your website. When someone clicks on your website to view it, they’ll be connected to the server that holds your blog information!
I highly recommend using Bluehost – it’s only $2.95 per month, with a free domain and built-in support! I’ve had only positive experiences with Bluehost so far! Give it a try – you absolutely won’t regret it. I’m all about saving money, and they were so inexpensive that I didn’t think twice about investing.
Blogger is awesome if you want to blog as a hobby. It’s free and easy to use, and has several themes to choose from! If you want to make money from your blog, I would steer clear of blogger simply because you have limited control over ads and sponsored posts. However, blogger is grrrrreat for hobby blogs. It’s way fast to set up, and is completely free, plus it has several theme options to choose from.
Choosing a Theme
The next step is to choose a theme! This was soooo overwhelming for me – there are tons of themes out there. I ended up going to Themeforest and loved how easy it was to narrow down my options. They have a really great filter that allows you to choose a specific price range and rating for your theme.There are tons of blog themes out there that are affordable and fabulous, and the filter tool is great for finding them!
Most of the themes also have a live preview option, which was a lifesaver for me, because I reaaaally don’t understand web coding lingo. The theme I have now is from Themeforest called Storybook, and it works wonderfully.
Once you’ve got your domain, web hosting and theme all nailed down, it’s time to think about an audience. Create several social media accounts and choose a few to focus on. I focus primarily on Pinterest and Instagram!
I highly suggest spending two weeks establishing your social media before you launch your blog. I did this and I’m so glad I did. It helped me build an audience AND it helped keep the overwhelmedness (def not a word. hope you’re not mad) to a minimum!
While you’re only live on social media, it’s a great time to write content! Building momentum on social media is a great idea, as long as when you DO launch your blog, there’s something for your new audience to read.
Quantity isn’t all that counts either. Make sure that each and every post you write is full of
quality content that your audience will love. If your readers head to your blog (that they’ve been waiting for for two WHOLE WEEKS) to find several great posts to engage with, they’ll be more likely to stick around with you!
Start Your Blog
So now you’ve got all your first steps to start a great blog. What are you waiting for?? Blogging is so rewarding, you will never regret starting your own. I’ve loved my experience so far, and I know you will too!