Blogging is a great way to make money online, especially for stay at home moms or stay at home dads. If you're looking to get into blogging then that's great! It's a good way to make extra money and write about something you're interested in. But blogging for beginners can be difficult if you don't find the right training.
I have personally started several blogs that have made money from various affiliate programs. By creating content about subjects that I was already passionate about and referring people to recommended products or services I was able to generate a decent income online.
Many sites online say that it's simple and easy to start a blog. While this may be true, continuing to build and maintain a blog can sometimes turn into a lot more work than you thought. Often once the initial excitement of starting your blog wears off people will become overwhelmed. I don't want to discourage you, but just know that there will be tough times for the first year or two.
Beginner bloggers need to approach their blog as an online business. It will take a lot of work, effort, and time to get it going, attract traffic, and even make money.
How I Make Money Online
I've been making money online through niche sites for several years now. Some of these have been Amazon affiliate sites, while some have been various other affiliate programs.
I tried for years to learn affiliate marketing without success. Then I found Wealthy Affiliate. Finally a step by step, affordable training that wasn't just a scam to get my money.
After completing the free introductory lessons of the training I already had a site built and was adding content to build it out further. I felt like I had finally found real training on affiliate marketing.
I continued through the rest of the course and made my first affiliate sale within the first 6 months. I've repeated this process several times since and have had good success in online marketing.
I currently am working on three new blogs, but have built a few successful blogs in the couple of years since I joined Wealthy Affiliate.
The training taught me how to create a blog, research keywords, write quality content, and drive traffic to my blog.
Blogging as a Business
To be successful in blogging you'll have to work hard at it. Blogging will have to be your business if you want to make money with it.
It's a lot of work.
Your blog is like the product of your business. You'll need to work hard to add content and bring in traffic. Traffic doesn't happen overnight though. There are many things to do to bring in traffic to your blog.
Some people monetize their blog immediately while others say to wait until you are bringing in steady traffic. The choice is yours but I usually monetize sooner rather than later.
At first your monetizaton will have to be strictly affiliate links. As more traffic comes into your site though, you'll have more options to monetize that traffic and will be able to create more income streams.
Blogging for Beginners - How Do Blogs Make Money?
There are several ways to make money with a popular blog. Let's take a look at some of the most common ways to earn income from your blog.
For blogs that get enough traffic, ad networks will be an option for monetizing. You will have to apply to be accepted to an ad network.
If you get accepted then you'll be able to put ads on your blog and make money from the ad network.
Whenever someone visits your blog and clicks on one of these ads you will get a commission. It's not much per click so it takes lots of traffic to build a good income from this source.
But once you do get enough traffic, ads are one of the most passive ways to earn as each of your articles can continue to get traffic and drive ad clicks for months or even years.
To be accepted to ad networks you will have to have a significant amount of traffic coming into your blog already.
But even if you're just starting to get traffic, you can always monetize your site by adding affiliate links.
Basically you recommend products and link to them with a special link that has your affiliate code in it. If they buy the product through your link then you get a commission.
One of the most popular affiliate programs on the internet is the Amazon Associates program, although there are thousands of others.
Create Your Own Product
Obviously it will be more lucrative for you if you have a product of your own and you can keep 100% of the profits.
For bloggers it's common to use products such as e-books or other forms of digital downloadable products. For physical products you will have to worry about inventory and distribution and this would be more of an e-commerce site than a blog.
Things like checklists, guides, calendars, etc. that can be printed off or saved to a computer are really good products to use for making money through a blog.
Blogging for Beginners: The Domain Name
Picking a domain name can often be difficult. You want to have the perfect brand name for you blog and many domains are already taken. Just make sure that before you settle on a domain name and start building your site that you're certain about your choice.
It can be a pain to have to re-brand your blog after you decide you no longer like your domain name. And for some people this happens three or four times before they finally decide.
Pick a good domain name that you're sure about, but don't take too long thinking about it and let this slow down the building of your site.
It's possible to spend weeks or more picking a domain name. Just spend a day, find something you're confident in, and go with it and get started.
It's better to get started and not let the domain hold you up for weeks. You need to get your site up and running!
After all, your readers really won't care a whole lot about the name of your blog. If you have good content then they will come to your blog for that content and will be fine with whatever the name is.
And anyway, if you really do hate your domain name and want to start over, it is always possible to re-brand to another domain name. You just don't want to be doing this too far into the process after you've established your blog.
How to Pick a Domain Name
The first step to finding a domain is to think of a list of as many words as you can relating to your blog topic.
Take this list and go to a site called namemesh.com. This site will take your word and give you hundreds of variations of available domain names related to your seed word.
In some cases your domain could be a match of the main keyword you're going after. This is called an Exact Match Domain (EMD).
EMDs used to be popular back in the day for SEO purposes, but now Google doesn't really weigh it as much. And the downside could be that if you want to branch your site out into other areas then you'll be limited by your domain name.
If you're blogging about very general topics related to your life then another possibility might be to use your name as the domain name. This could help you build our personal brand and make you an authority in your niche.
Your domain does not have to be a .com.
Google has said that it doesn't put any weight on domain extensions. There are hundreds of new domain extensions that you can use, especially if the .com is already taken. Namemesh will be helpful in recommending some of these as well.
Just make sure that you build your blog/domain name into a brand. This will be great for you site's SEO. Google has shown that the more people look to your site as an authoritative brand in your niche, the higher your rankings will be.
There are five general rules you should keep in mind for your domain:
- Don't pick an exact match domain
- Make it easy to say and remember
- Generally speaking it shouldn't be too long
- Don't use anything trendy that might go out of style
- Make something to set the tone of your blog
Blog Website Hosting
Once you've landed on a name and bought your domain, you will have to find web hosting for your new website.
Now, one option is to try free blog platforms like Blogger.com, but I would not suggest this for several reasons.
- Your blog will actually belong to the platform you're posting on and not you.
- Because your blog is not yours, your monetization options are limited
- You blog could be taken down or removed at any time without your say
So while going with a free option may sound good in the beginning, you really want to have good paid hosting.
But don't worry because there are a lot of inexpensive options for hosting online.
I actually host my sites at Wealthy Affiliate. They provide hosting, keyword research, training, and a helpful online community all in one.
1. Find Hosting
Again, I use Wealthy Affiliate hosting for all of my sites. They give free members two websites on a free domain and paid members 25 sites on their own domain.
Google search rankings are impacted by the load time of your site. Site speed is one of the main focal points with the hosting platform at Wealthy Affiliate. You can be certain your WordPress site will always be hosted on the latest and most powerful servers in the world through Amazon hosting.
They use a uniquely brilliant "load limiting" process that will monitor your websites and make sure they are always running optimally.
Wealthy Affiliate knows WordPress. Because of their innate knowledge of the intricacies of WordPress and the security vulnerabilities that can occur within the platform, they are able to prevent hacking or spam before it happens. They have several layers of security that shield your websites and keep them secure so you can sleep easy.
2. Register Your Domain
The SiteDomains platform at Wealthy Affiliate will instantly allow you to uncover any domain in seconds. This feature will expedite your domain research and truly uncover some of the true domain gems out there.
Access and purchase .com, .net, .org, .info and all of your other favorite top level domains in an instant.
3. Build Your Website
I have yet to have someone tell me they cannot build a website at WA. Within minutes, you are going to have your very own niche website online and visible to the world.
A website that once took weeks, if not months to build, can now be built in the blink of the eye. When you don't have to spend your time messing around with the technical aspects of building a website, you can focus your energy on what matters. Your business.
4. Choose Your Theme
Wealthy Affiliate has over 3,000 templates to choose from. There is a look for everyone. Regardless of the type of website you are looking to build, with a few clicks you can have a beautiful website up and running and live online. A quality user experience starts with design. Building your perfect website is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
5. Keyword Research With Jaaxy
With over 500 Million "brand new" search terms being searched every day, it is important that you have a keyword tool that can offer accurate traffic, competition, and domain insights into billions of keywords. Jaaxy is that tool.
With Jaaxy, you are going to be able to quickly discover unique, hot and untouched keywords that you will then be able to use to drive your SEO and PPC campaigns to new heights.
The Education at Wealthy Affiliate isn't just simple, it's better in every single way. From the moment that you join you are going to be walked through our state of the art, step by step training platform. For newbies and advanced marketers alike, our focus with all of our training is teaching you how to create a successful, long term business within the online space.
The online business world changes rapidly as search engines change, as the techniques and strategies for building a business change, and as technology rapidly progresses. The education you will get at WA promises you a competitive advantage over your fellow webmasters and keeps you ahead of the curve in terms of what works today and what will work tomorrow.
Adding lots of valuable content is the final and the main step in building your successful blog. Wealthy Affiliate will teach you how to create content that will push up your search rankings.
Once your site is built and running and you've done the keyword research to find the topics you want to write about, it's all about creating lots and lots of helpful content and ranking for those keywords in Google.