Beginner's Guide

How to Start a Blog and Make Money? (Beginner’s Guide 2021)

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How to Start a Blog and Make Money Online (Beginner's Guide)

Are you trying to find a simple guide on how to start a blog and make money out of it? Then, you’re in the right place.

Yes, it’s possible that a beginner can make money with a blog. Woohoo, the internet has given us that freedom! Now with this, we can become digital influencers and earn an income from anywhere in the world.

In this article, we’ll show you exactly how to create a blog for beginners and start earning money online. We’ll walk you through each step to make it all clear. 

Let’s begin!

A. What is a Blog? Should You Really Start Blogging Now?

In short, blogs kicked off as simple text entries. As it was derived from the word Weblog (web + log) which usually means nothing more than an online diary.

Nowadays, blogs are much more than that! Broadly, a blog is an informational website that contains articles about a specific niche or subject and the articles are displayed in reverse chronological order – the most recent blog post appears first.

What is a Blog Definition
What is a Blog – Definition

For example, SiteSaga (the website you’re currently viewing) is a blog. We publish articles on the website making on a regular basis. 

In other words, a blog is a type of website that contains regularly updated content.

And the content present in that blog is usually referred to as entries, blog posts, or articles. Similarly, the people that create and maintain blogs are called bloggers.

Early day bloggers used to write their blogs from a personal perspective to connect with their audiences. But nowadays, blogs vary in nature, niche, as well as effort. 

You can find various types of blogs from individual diaries to political campaigns, marketing blogs to news programs, business affiliates, and more. They range in scale from the writing by an individual author to the collaboration of an outsized community of writers.

To conclude, people are using blogs for a variety of purposes – to share information, marketing products, entertaining people, earning money, etc. And, it’s important to note that many organizations and business owners are using blogs to market their services and products.

Should You Really Start Blogging Now? (5 Top Reasons)

Many people think that to start a blog and be successful in it, you need to be a great writer.  The truth is that you don’t need to be an expert. The thing about blogging is to share your views or ideas with the world on any topic you like. For that, all you need is a passion to write for your topic.

Brainstorming Ideas to Start a Blog
Brainstorming Ideas to Start a Blog

But you also need more interesting reasons, right? Don’t worry, here are the top 5 reasons why you should start blogging right away!

1) Perfect Way to Express Yourself 

Today the internet has given us the freedom to raise our voices and be heard by millions of people. Also, who doesn’t want to be heard? Hence, a blog is such a platform that gives you an opportunity to share your opinions and thoughts with the entire world.

Likewise, just knowing that your stories are being heard is something rewarding enough in itself. To start out, you can just write about your daily thoughts and experiences so that others can all be a part of their lives.

2) Make Money 

Although most people start out their blogging journey as a personal blog which is quite fun at the beginning. However, if done correctly, blogging can be quite profitable. 

There are lots of people who work as full-time bloggers and earn quite a bit. Similarly, even a part-time blogger has been found making a wholesome profit if they do it correctly. 

Blogging can be one way of earning a passive income just by spending a few hours a week writing a piece of your favorite content. And from that, you can continuously earn profit even after writing is finished.

3) Promote Your Business

A successful blog can help you gain a ton of recognition in your respective field. In addition to that, it can be one of the most cost-effective and easiest ways to promote your business.

A good blog can attract more traffic and increase your sales. Besides that, it’s the best way to establish yourself in your industry and even helps you reach new markets. 

4) Creates a Community

Blogging can establish a sense of community by opening a space for communication and encouraging interaction. With each and every blog post you publish, people can comment on it. 

In this way, it creates a good healthy connection with the people who are interested in the same thing as you are. With that, you would be able to share your knowledge and thoughts with those people based on your experience. 

Not only that, they can be your motivation to write even more blog posts and even give you the opportunity to learn from them as well.

5) Complement Your Website

If you’ve ever gone through some other popular website, then you might have seen that they’ve added a Blog section to it. 

Adding a blog to your website can help your visitors connect with what you have to say and offer. Likewise, it even drives targeted traffic to your website.  


B. How to Start a Blog? (Ultimate Guide for Beginners)

Being a new blogger, it’s always difficult to know where to start from. Although you keep on hearing that people are making money with their blogs. And you somehow feel quite confused.

Hence, we bring you a comprehensive guide on how to make money from blogging for beginners. We’ve put forward a step-by-step plan to teach you how to start earning passive income from your blog.

How to Start Blogging?
How to Start Blogging (Step-by-Step)

Let’s begin with the first step – picking popular and profitable topics for your blog.


Step 1: Pick a Topic/ Niche for Your Blog

Once you’ve decided that you’re going to start your blog, now you might be asking, “What should I blog about?”

Hence, the very first thing you need to do is to pick the niche for your blog. By niche, we mean to find the topic that you can most identify your blog with. For instance, our niche is “technology” since we write about different kinds of technical subjects related to website building.

By now you may have already selected a niche or maybe you haven’t. Always remember that picking a perfect niche is always crucial to succeed in blogging. Although you can blog just about anything, you need to find one thing to write about.

How to Choose an Appropriate Blogging Niche?

However, if you don’t have an idea for a topic already, then here are few ways for choosing your blog niche: 

  • Interests and Passions – For newbies, pick the topic that you know better or are comfortable with. Go with that topic that you most like to talk about, and you can comfortably talk about it for hours.
  • Know Your Audience – Make sure that you conduct your market research to know whether your audiences are interested in your niche or not. 
  • Pick Smaller Niche – It’s always good to have good healthy competition between the competitors. Therefore, if you ever find too many competitors for your choice of niche, you can narrow down your niche by picking a smaller niche.
  • Check Niche Size – You need to choose an appropriate-sized niche. Because instead of aiming for an audience of “everyone”, go with a specific audience group. 
  • Monetization – Finally, you need to look for whether your niche of choice generates some money or not. Although it’s fun to blog about your interests, it’s even better if it generates a nice income out of your blog as well.

What are Popular & Profitable Topics for Blogging?

If you’ve already gotten a topic for your blog then you can skip this one. Or else here are a few examples of niches that help you earn money from blogging. 

Personal Finance Blog

Money Under 30
Money Under 30

Personal finance is one of the most highly-demanded niches out there on the internet as everyone wants to know how to make and save more money. In recent times, topics like investing, frugality and budgeting have become a keen interest for more people. 

However, to jump into it, it’s not as easy as it seems, As it’s always a good thing if you have a formal finance-related education. In this way, you can at least handle your own money, and share tips and tricks with your readers.

Health and Fitness Blog

MyFitnessPal
MyFitnessPal

Health and fitness are some of the most contentious and profitable blog niches. It’s a huge topic where you can definitely find a large audience if you’re thinking about blogging in this area. 

Many people can be found constantly searching for fitness advice, a gluten-free diet, or CrossFit that can help them lead a better life. However, before going with this profitable blog niche, you need to know your stuff and have the proof/evidence to back it up.

Plus, it’s a perfect bogging niche if you’re a doctor, certified dietitian, licensed fitness instructor, or have an incredibly personal story related to the topic.

Lifestyle Blog

Bright Bazaar
Bright Bazaar

A lifestyle blog is a multi-topics blog where you can write about a range of different topics. And somehow all those topics are connected through having the same audiences. 

Somehow nowadays, this kind of blog is becoming quite popular. As it’s a perfect niche for those who aren’t sure about what to blog about or want to blog about a multitude of things. However, you need to make sure that your blog has a clear brand to give it focus and direction.

Food and Drinks Blog

Our Food Stories
Our Food Stories

Who doesn’t love to eat delicious and mouth-watering food! Food is something that always brings people together. Therefore, food blogs are perhaps one of the most saturated niches out there.

If you love eating almost anything or criticizing every food that you eat for the first time, then it makes sense that you have to start a food blog. Similarly, if you have a strong culinary background or a passion for baking then you must also give it a try. 

Many food bloggers out there seem to be earning a wholesome amount through advertising, affiliate links, or restaurant and bar reviews.

Technology Blog

TechCrack
TechCrack

Technology is another fast-pacing niche topic that is great for making money from affiliate income, or from software companies themselves. 

Technology is transforming each and every inch of our lives. With this happening, it’s an over accomplishing topic that could cater to a large number of tech-savvy audiences. 

With new techs launching every week, you can write in-depth product reviews with lots of links to products or software using affiliate links. Also, you can start writing tutorials on how to use a specific piece of software or gadgets too.

Travel Blog

PS:I'm On My Way
PS: I’m On My Way

If you love traveling, exploring new places, or meeting new people, then a travel blog can be a great companion during your trips. 

There are many people who love traveling but cannot either afford it or don’t have the time. Then, for those people, you can be one who can share your travel stories and make them see the world from your eyes. 

Hence, travel blogs seem to attract a lot of traffic which makes them extremely easy to monetize. You can monetize your blogs through affiliate links to hotels, recommended travel agents, and so on. And, sometimes you even get lucky with free vacations around the world. 

But that’s not all! There are many other popular and profitable topics for blogging that you can find in the market. Such as education, DIY, marketing, science, yoga, sports, personal development, entertainment, and more. 


Step 2: Choose the Best Blogging Platform

Now that you’ve finalized your blogging niche, it’s time to decide where you should create your blog.

There are many blogging platforms available out there in the market. And all those platforms differ from one another in terms of price, features, ease of use, and more. 

Hence, you need to be careful while choosing a blogging platform for yourself. 

How to Choose a Blogging Platform?

Before heading to the list, let’s look at a few elements while selecting the best platform for your blog.

  • Easy Learning Curve: If you’re new to blogging, you probably shouldn’t start out with an overly complex platform. Always go with those platforms that are fairly straightforward to get started with.
  • Cost-Friendly: As per your budget, consider whether you can afford a paid blogging platform or not. However, the platform that you are going with must deliver precisely what you need.
  • Customization Option: A good blogging platform should give you the freedom to create your blog the way you want. 
  • Audience-Building Tools: As your blog grows, you would definitely want your audience to grow with that. Make sure that your blogging platform supports all the tools that help you build audiences. 
  • SEO-Friendly: To attract high traffic and rank better in search results, you’ll have to look for an SEO built-in blogging platform.
  • Monetization Option: At the beginning, you may have not planned for making money from blogging. However, you should opt for a platform that offers better monetization options. 

With all that in mind, let’s look at some of the best blogging platforms to start off with.

What are Different Popular Blogging Platforms?

Here are the popular blogging platforms you can use to start your own blog today:

1. WordPress.org – Best for Creating Highly Customizable Blog

WordPress.org Website

WordPress is the most popular blogging platform that powers over 40% of websites worldwide. It’s open-source and free software that allows you to build your blog within minutes.

You can download this software from WordPress.org for free. After that, choose web hosting, a domain name, and build your blog. It comes with a powerful yet user-friendly editor that makes it easy to create any type of content on your blog.

Hence, WordPress is a perfect choice for both personal blogs as well as professional blogs. 

2. Blogger – Free Blogging Platform Backed by Google

Blogger as a CMS

After WordPress, Blogger is another free and popular blogging platform. It’s one of the oldest blogging platforms that was first launched in 1999 by Pyra Labs and later acquired by Google in 2003. 

The best thing about Blogger is that it’s quick and easy to create a blog even for non-techy beginners. To start, all you need is a Google account and you’re ready to start off with your first blog. 

Also, it provides you with a free blog address that looks like www.yourblogname.blogspot.com.

Also, check our detailed WordPress vs Blogger comparison!

3. Wix – Best Blog Web Builder for Beginners

Wix Blogging Platform

Wix is a fully-hosted blogging platform that helps you create a full-fledged website with a blog included. It’s one of the most versatile blogging platforms. Hence, even people with no coding background can easily create their website without any restrictions. 

Additionally, it uses Wix Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI) that helps you design your website visually by simply entering your preferences. Overall, it’s an intuitive drag-and-drop editor and its tools help you create individualized layouts and designs. 

Also, it offers many SEO features from alt tags for your images and internal links to SEO titles and descriptions.

You might also want to check our side-by-side comparison of WordPress vs Wix!

4. WordPress.com – Hosted Version of WordPress

WordPress.com Website

Just like WordPress.org, WordPress.com also allows you to create websites using the open-source WordPress software. But it’s a fully-hosted platform while WordPress.org is self-hosted. For more details, please read WordPress.com vs WordPress.org.

It’s a hosting plus website building tool provided by Automattic, the company by Matt Mullenweg who’s the co-founder of WordPress. It offers you a wide range of plans to start a blog or website. 

To begin with, you can choose a free plan which takes care of your hosting and even provides a free subdomain. And your free subdomain would look like this: https://yourblogname.wordpress.com.

Hence, WordPress.com is a perfect blogging platform for those absolute beginners with no technical knowledge. Also, for those who don’t want the overwhelming features of self-hosted WordPress.

Also, check our WordPress.com vs Blogger to pick one of the hosted blogging sites.

5. Medium – Best For Writers, Bloggers, and Journalists

Medium Blogging Platform
Blogging Platform ‘Medium’

Medium is different from the rest of the blogging platforms discussed above. Unlike other blogging platforms, it’s an already popular blogging network with a built-in audience. 

In fact, it’s a healthy community of writers, bloggers, journalists, and experts. And, it delivers content on diverse topics as anyone with an account can write. 

Medium is super simple to use and also comes with built-in social networking features. However, it makes sure that you solely focus on your writing, instead of designing a website. 

Also, it helps you generate tons of backlinks and makes your content more liable to rank higher on SERPs.

If you want to learn more, please check our full review and comparison of Medium vs WordPress.

Our Recommendation – WordPress.org

Among all the mentioned blogging platforms, we’d like to recommend that you should go with WordPress.org. Since it’s a free platform that you can download and install on your own webserver to create a blog. Besides, it lets you host your own blog and website.  

Not only that, it’s quite user-friendly that even a non-tech person can easily learn how to use it and can start their own blog.  All you need is a domain name and a web hosting account to get started with WordPress.org.

Lastly, it’s an extremely flexible and versatile blogging platform. With WordPress, you can run any sort of blog. Regardless of whether it’s a business blog, personal blog, travel blog, fitness blog, or even an e-commerce store, WordPress can easily handle it all.


Step 3: Find a Good Domain Name

By far, we’ve already picked a topic and chosen the platform for our blog. Now, in this step look at how we can choose a good domain name for our blog.

Choosing the best domain name is quite stressful because it’s an essential element of your branding. Hence, you make sure that you don’t make any mistakes.

Actually, a domain name is the address or URL of your blog using which visitors open your blog. In other words, it’s the unique name that identifies your blog on the internet. Normally, a domain name consists of a word or phrase with an extension like .com, .org, .blog, .co, etc.

For example, sitesaga.com is our blog’s domain name.

Custom Domain Name Example (sitesaga.com)
Domain Name Example (sitesaga.com)

Hence, it’s important to pick the right domain name on the go, or else it’ll be hard to switch later on. Keeping this in mind, here are a few tips and tricks that help you pick the best domain name for your blog.

1. Always Prefer .com Domain Name

Nowadays you can find plenty of other domain name extensions to choose from. However, we recommend using the .com domain name as it remains to be the normal standard. 

The domain names that end with .com tend to be more established and credible extensions. Similarly, it’s quite familiar and easy to remember. Plus, today’s most smartphone keyboards have introduced a .com button.

2. Domain Name Should Be Short 

It’s always your choice what domain name you want to choose for your blog. But, it doesn’t mean that you start overcomplicating the name of your blog. 

You should always keep your domain name short and easy to memorize. Therefore, if you don’t want people to have trouble remembering your domain name, then keep it under 15 characters. 

Moreover, having a shorter domain name means less chance of misspellings and easier to type in your URL without mistake. 

3. Make it Easy to Pronounce and Spell

Along with short character domain names, make sure that it’s easy to read as well. As you don’t want others to pronounce your domain name wrongly. 

Likewise, if your domain name is simple to read, say and remember, then it’ll even make it easy to type. Besides, hard to pronounce names will only create confusion among your audience, and you’ll lose much-needed traffic.

4. Add Keywords to Your Domain Name

Adding keywords to your domain names is like adding a cherry on the top of the cake. 

When you use the keywords in your domain, it not just only describes your business to your audience. But, also tell the search engines what your website is about. 

Finding a good domain name with your keywords is hard, but when you find it, it’ll just make more sense to your customers.

5. Avoid Hyphens and Numbers

When you add a number or hyphen to your domain name, it often creates misunderstanding. 

For example, let’s say you use a number (say 7) in your domain name. Then the person who hears for the first time will be confused whether you’ve used a numeral ‘7’ or the word ‘seven’ itself.  

Likewise, hyphenated domain names have been found prone to typos. As people often misplace and forget the dash in the domain name.

6. Make it Reflect Your Brand

Always go with that domain name that reflects and describes your brand. This means to make your domain as unique as possible so that you can stand out in your readers’ minds.

But at the same time, you don’t want to confuse your visitors by using irrelevant names that have no association with what you do.

7. Check For Copyright and Trademark

After spending so much of your time, and money, you definitely don’t want to get sued for infringement. Therefore, make sure that the name that you’ve chosen is neither trademarked, copyrighted, nor used by other companies.

8. Simply Use a Domain Name Generator

Domain Wheel Generator
Domain Wheel Generator

Finally, if you’re still unable to decide what domain name that you can go with, simply use the domain name generator. You can find many such generator tools online that are free to use.

These tools are quite easy to use as you just have to type keywords or phrases related to your business. And, then it’ll automatically spit out hundreds of domain name ideas.

Some of the best domain name generators that we’d recommend are Nameboy, NameMesh, DomainWheel, and Instant Domain Search.


Step 4: Choose the Best Web Hosting for Your Blog

Now your next goal for setting up your blog would be to select a web hosting provider. Although you get lots of great hosting providers out there, the choice is entirely up to you. 

Web Hosting
Web Hosting

Whatever you choose, you need a web hosting provider that prioritizes speed, features, performance, security, and support. After all, having good hosting is one of the fundamental parts of setting up your blog. As it stores the data and makes it available for viewing all over the globe.

Likewise, it even guarantees that when accessing your blog, all the content will be accessible for your audience. So that they can browse any content or section they wish. 

Why Do You Need a Good Web Hosting For a Blog?

Now let’s look at some points that make you consider good web hosting for your blog:

  • Better Performance: Good web hosting makes sure that loading speeds will no longer be an issue for you. As better the site is performing, there is a higher chance of audience engagement.
  • Response Time: If your site takes too long to respond, surely your audience will prefer to go for your competitors’ site. Hence, good web hosting always guarantees a very short response time.
  • Good Storage Option: Depending on the purpose of your blog/website, most providers will provide various storage spaces for your files. The best option is to go with such providers that best meet your needs.
  • Awesome Security: We all know that trusting any hosting company for your website is not a simple task. Therefore, one makes sure that the provider that they’ve chosen must guarantee several layers of security in place. Along with ensuring a system of data redundancy and constant backups.
  • Excellent Technical Support: As you never know when you may face an issue or your hosting server may break down. Therefore, if you don’t have good technical skills, your provider definitely needs to be like a member of your technical team. 

With these factors considered, now let’s check out some of the best blog hosting providers you can check out!

Best Blog Hosting Providers Worth Considering 

Below we’ve listed a few best blog hosting providers worth considering. Make sure to check them out and decide which one is best for you.

1. Bluehost 

Bluehost WordPress Hosting Service

Bluehost is one of the best blog hosting providers as it offers top tier, 24/7 customer support, and more. It’s among the few hosting providers recommended officially by WordPress.org.

Bluehost offers the best plans for bloggers when it comes to affordability, high-end performance, and exceptional customer support. Alongside that, it even provides free website migrations,  free domain name, website builder, and SSL Certificate. 

Therefore, Bluehost is the most used and trusted web hosting around the world. For more, please read our detailed Bluehost review!

2. DreamHost

DreamHost Best Affordable Web Hosting

DreamHost is undoubtedly known for its speed, security, and support. At the same time, it’s the most affordable blog hosting provider across all its packages.

The best thing is that its price plan makes it perfect for bloggers who are looking for budget-friendly providers. Also, it makes sure that you don’t get surprised by sudden hikes in prices as your blog grows.

Additionally, it provides excellent options for bloggers like free domain names, website builders, unlimited bandwidth, storage, and more.

3. SiteGround 

SiteGround WordPress Hosting Service

SiteGround is another well-established hosting provider which is considerably affordable and reliable. When it comes to performance, it offers impressive load speeds.

Besides, uptime is something that you don’t need to worry about, as their servers boast a 99.9% uptime. It even provides automatic upgrades, CDN, SSL, built-in WP caching, regular backups, and more.

Just like Bluehost, SiteGround is also highly recommended by WordPress.org. Hence, over two million websites are using SiteGround.

4. HostGator 

HostGator WordPress Hosting Service

HostGator is yet another popular choice among beginner bloggers. It comes with an impressive range of features at an extremely affordable price. 

This hosting platform even offers Windows hosting and Linux options. Plus, it provides a strong offering across cloud hosting, a VPS, managed WordPress, and shared hosting.

If your priority is strong customer support and performance then you’re good with HostGator hosting no doubt! Since you receive support 7 days a week throughout the year via phone or live chat.

5. Hostinger 

Hostinger WordPress Hosting Service

Hostinger is a powerful hosting provider that has one of the cheapest options currently available on the market. This is the web hosting choice among many bloggers and small businesses.

Even with the cheapest price, you won’t have to sacrifice quality for a good service to power your blog. Similarly, most of its hosting plans offer SSD storage with free SSL certificate, free domain name, website builder, robust technical support, etc.

Hence, Hostinger is a great choice for those who want to start a blog, but don’t want to spend much money. 

Our Recommended Hosting for Your Blog

So, if you’re going to start your blog then we’d recommend Bluehost for low-budget bloggers. And, SiteGround is for professional bloggers who want to grow their blog fast and make money.


Step 5: Purchase Domain, Hosting, and Set Up Your Blog

By far, we hope you’ve already picked out the best web hosting for your blog. Hence, now we’re going to see how you can get your blog online. 

Before we get started with this, you’ll also need to have the software to build your blog. Hence, in this guide, we’ll show you how to build a blog using the WordPress blogging platform. Since it’s the most popular, customizable, and easiest to use.

According to us, WordPress and Bluehost are the perfect combinations of a blog platform & web hosting to create a blog. That’s because WordPress is free publishing software that is quite popular, customizable, and easy to use at the same time.

Similarly, Bluehost is the most popular and reliable hosting company in the blog hosting industry. Besides, it’s extremely affordable and also provides a free domain name for your blog

Now, let’s see how exactly you can create a blog with Bluehost. 

How to Set Up Your Web Hosting with Bluehost?

Let’s look at the step by step process on how you can set up your blog with Bluehost:-

#1 Head over to Bluehost.com

Get Started with Bluehost
Get Started with Bluehost

Firstly, head over to the Bluehost.com homepage and click on the dark blue button that says Get Started.

# 2 Select a Blog Hosting Plan

After that, it’ll take you to the other page where it’ll ask you to select a hosting plan for your blog. Bluehost offers you the following web hosting plans to choose from – Basic, Plus, Choice Plus, and Pro:

Select Hosting Plan
Select Hosting Plan

If you’re just starting out with your first blog, feel free to select the Basic plan. Since it’s cheap and includes everything that you need when you’re just getting started. 

On the other hand, you can always upgrade your plans later if you need to. But, for now, let’s go with the Basic Plan.

Following that, click on the Select button and it’ll land you on the next page, where you can choose your domain name.

#3 Pick Your Domain Name

On the next page, you’ll be asked to choose the domain name for your blog. 

Setup Your Domain
Setup Your Domain

If you’ve already decided on the domain name for your blog, you can register for free where it says Create a new domain. Here you’ll need to enter your chosen domain name with the extension. 

Similarly, you might have already owned a domain and you want to use it for your blog. If that is the case, then enter your existing domain where it says Use a domain you own. You should go with this one only if you’ve previously paid to register a domain.

After that, click on the respective Next button, to move ahead to the next step. 

Yet, if you haven’t chosen one, you can skip this step and create your domain name later. For that, simply click on the I’ll create my domain name later link at the bottom.

#4 Create Your Bluehost Account

At last, it’ll take you to a new page where it’ll ask you to create your Bluehost account. 

This is how the page looks:

Create Your Bluehost Account
Create Your Bluehost Account

In the beginning, it’ll ask you to enter your account information. While filling in the information, make sure you provide your recent and updated email address. because that is where Bluehost will send all your login details and account information.

Bluehost Account Information
Bluehost Account Information

#5 Select Bluehost Web Hosting Plan

Earlier we’ve already selected our web hosting plan which was Bluehost’s Basic Plan.

Here, all you’ve to select is the duration of your Bluehost account plan. It’s always better when you choose a longer hosting plan. After all, it allows you to purchase it at a lower price.

Bluehost Package Information
Bluehost Package Information

Therefore, we recommend you choose the 36-month price plan as long as it supports your budget. 

Now, if you just scroll down then you’ll see a section called Package Extras. In this section, you can choose some additional services for your blog. Or else, you can skip it if you don’t need it at all.

Bluehost Package Extras
Bluehost Package Extras

#6 Provide Payment Information

Finally, provide your payment details, followed by reading and accepting the terms, and click the Submit button.

Bluehost Payment Information
Bluehost Payment Information

Congratulations! You are now an official member of Bluehost with your own blog hosting plan.


Install WordPress (Auto-install option / one-click option)

Once you’ve completed web hosting your blog with Bluehost, it’s time to log in to your Bluehost account. After you’ve successfully logged in to your account, you’ll see the ‘My Sites‘ menu.

Create WordPress Site Option in Bluehost Dashboard
Create WordPress Site Option in Bluehost Dashboard

After that, click on the ‘Create site‘ option. As you add websites, they’ll be added there and you can also manage your sites right from there.

When adding a website, you’ll have to provide the name for your blog and a suitable tagline for your blog. Also, you can choose whether your site is a blog, online store, or any other type of website.

After that, Bluehost will now install WordPress automatically on your account. So that you don’t have too much of the work here.

Once WordPress has been successfully installed, you’ll directly land on your WordPress login page

WordPress Login Page
WordPress Login Page

Another way to find your WordPress login page is by entering your website URL followed by /wp-login.php or /wp-admin/.

For example, 

  • www.example.com/wp-login.php
  • www.example.com/wp-admin/
  • www.example.com/login/

Using these URLs, it’ll take you to your WordPress login page where you can enter your username and password. Then click on the ‘Log In‘ button. 

In this way, you’ll be able to see your WordPress dashboard. After that, you can start customizing your blog, change themes, add plugins, create content, and publish.


Step 6: Start Customizing Your Blog

After you’ve set up your own self-hosted WordPress blog, it’s time to select a theme, customize it and add essential plugins to your dashboard. 

#1 Choose Your Blog Theme & Install

Having a good blog design for your blog ensures that your visitors will love your blog. In fact, there is no doubt that:

The first impression is the last impression.

– Anonymous

Imagine your blog design as a nice outfit that you wore on your prom night. This is how you want your audience to remember your blog when they see it for the first time. 

Choose a Beautiful Theme like Prom Outfit
Choose Theme Beautiful as Your Prom Outfit

And, that’s exactly why you need a beautiful WordPress theme. In WordPress, a theme determines the overall appearance of a website. So, you should choose a high-quality theme for a good-looking blog design. 

How to Choose the Best WordPress Theme for Your Blog?

In WordPress, it’s really easy to change the look of your blog. All you have to be is super careful while choosing your theme.

Now, you might be wondering that choosing a WordPress theme is not easy. But no need to worry at all. We’ll help you with that too.

WordPress comes with many free and premium themes and templates that are available for all types of blogs.

You can get your free themes from the WordPress official themes repository. Whereas you can purchase premium themes from ThemeForest and other independent theme companies like ThemeGrill, WPAstra.com, Themeisle, etc. 

However, we don’t recommend you to go with a premium WordPress theme when you’re just starting a blog. Because you can get plenty of well-designed and beautiful themes without paying a penny, fully free. 

For more, read our detailed guide on how to choose a WordPress theme. This can help you in selecting a perfect theme for your blog. 

Our Choice for this Tutorial – Astra
Astra WordPress Theme Demo Site on Different Screens
Astra WordPress Theme Demo Site on Different Screens

For this tutorial, we’re going with the most popular free WordPress theme Astra. Here, are some reasons why we love Astra so much:

Now, let’s look at how we can install the Astra theme and customize it for your blog. 

Installing a WordPress Theme (Astra)

The easiest way to install Astra or any other free WordPress theme would be from the WordPress dashboard. 

For that, login into your WordPress dashboard and go to the Appearance > Themes. Next, click on the Add New button.

Add New Theme
Add New Theme

This will take you to the selection page where you can see the search field at the very top right-hand side.

Search for Astra Theme
Search for Astra Theme

In that search field, you need to search for the name of the theme (i.e. Astra) that you want to install. Once you have found the theme that best fits your liking, click on the Install button.

Install Astra Theme
Install Astra Theme

Once the installation is completed, click on the Activate button and you’re done!

Pretty simple right? Well, this is how you install an Astra theme into your site.

If in case, you’re going with the premium version of the theme, you should do it via the Upload Method. To get started, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Appearance > Themes 
  2. Click on the Add New button
  3. Click on the Upload Theme button
  4. Select Choose file and then find the .zip file on your device. Example: astra.zip
  5. Once the uploading process is completed, click on the Install Now button

For more additional help, check our guide on how to install a WordPress theme.

#2 Customizing Your WordPress Theme

After you’ve completed installing and activating the Astra theme, it’s time to customize the theme to match your blog.

But before that let’s look at a new submenu under the WordPress Appearance Menu named Astra Options.

Astra Options
Astra Options

When you click on that option it’ll take you to the next page which is more of a hub than a settings page. Basically, we can say it’s the home base for the Astra theme. Here, you’ll find all options for the theme that is available within the WordPress Theme Customizer.

Likewise, you can find links to activate free plugins to extend Astra, Along with other important links to the Astra website, knowledge base, and  Facebook community group. 

To start customizing Astra go to Appearance > Customize from your WordPress dashboard.

WordPress Customize Option
WordPress Customize Option

Next, it’ll take you to the WordPress Theme Customizer where you can preview any changes you make in real-time. Also, you can switch the preview mode from desktop to tablet or mobile.

WordPress Theme Customizer
WordPress Theme Customizer

As you see in the sidebar there are options that are spread across many top-level sections and many sub-sections. This makes it super easy to find the settings you want to change.

Therefore, you’ll definitely find many useful options within the WordPress Theme Customizer. Besides, you can easily modify the colors and typography of your blog and add quick links to your WordPress menus and widgets.

To make it even easier to customize your blog’s looks and functionality, we’re going to use Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg with Astra.

Let’s have a look!

#3 Getting Started With Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg

Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg

Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg (UAG) is a beautiful and powerful WordPress block plugin that powers up your Gutenberg editor. With its advanced and powerful blocks, you can build beautiful websites in no time.

Similarly, you can build and design stunning websites with its huge library of awesome Gutenberg blocks. Also, it’s extremely easy to use and can build a website with just a click. 

The Astra theme is already compatible with Gutenberg. Hence, you can start right away to create your stunning designs with Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg and Astra. 

Thus, let’s look at how we can get started with Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg.

Installing the Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg

Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg is a great WordPress plugin built by the same team behind the Astra theme. 

Hence, they offer a seamless UAG integration for Astra. It takes just a click to install the plugin on your Astra-based website and start designing.  

To activate Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg, firstly you need to go to Appearance > Astra Options from your WordPress dashboard. 

Astra Options for UAG
Astra Options for UAG

After that, it’ll take you to another page where if you scroll down a bit, you’ll find a section called Extend Astra with free plugins!. 

In that section, you’ll see a list of some free plugins that are compatible with your Astra theme. And in that very list, at last, you’ll find an option for Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg.

Activate UAG Plugin
Activate UAG Plugin

Now, all you need to do is click on the Activate link located just beside the name of the plugin. 

Creating a Post or Page Using Astra and UAG Plugin

Once activation is completed, you can start creating a post or a page that you want to build with the Gutenberg editor.

The best thing is that Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg blocks will be automatically added alongside those of the Gutenberg editor. 

To simply access those blocks, you’ll have to click on the ‘+‘ icon present at the top of the bar.

WordPress Editor
WordPress Editor

After that, all you need to do is search for UAG Blocks in the search field. Then, it’ll show you the whole list of UAG blocks that are available.

Search UAG Blocks
Search UAG Blocks

Now, simply select the UAG block that you want just like any other Gutenberg block. And, then see it getting added on the post or page.

For example, we’ll show you how you can add a social share button using the UAG block. Look for the UAG Social Share block, then click on that block to add it to your editor.

Select Social Share Block
Select Social Share Block

Here, we’ve added a social share button just below the post title. Once you’ve added it, you’ll find the respective settings on the right side for that block.

Customize Social Share Block
Customize Social Share Block

You can add as many social media buttons as you like in your blog post. Similarly, you can even customize the button’s size, border radius, background size, and more.

Interesting right?

This is how you can start creating stunning designs with Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg and Astra. 

#4 Install Essential Plugins & Optimize Your Blog 

Once you’ve decided on the best theme for your WordPress blog, it’s time to install some essential WordPress plugins. These plugins will help to provide even more customizations and prepare your blog to develop into a real business.

But it can sometimes be overwhelming as there are thousands of free and premium plugins available out there.

Therefore, to help you get through it, we’ve listed some of the must-have WordPress blog plugins when you start your blogging journey:

Yoast SEO

WooCommerce Yoast SEO Plugin

Yoast SEO is a popular WordPress SEO plugin that helps you to optimize your blog post titles, descriptions, content length, and other elements. It’s an all-in-one solution that contains everything that you need to manage your SEO

Therefore, it’s a must-have WordPress plugin that drives many readers towards your blog. Similarly, you can optimize your content with proper keywords that rank in the search engines.

Plus, Yoast can even analyze the readability of your blog and determine the Flesch Reading Ease score. This will help you make better content so that your readers can understand it easily.

For more details, please read our comprehensive guide and review of Yoast SEO plugin!

WPForms

WPForms - Best WordPress Form Plugin

WPForms is a beginner-friendly WordPress contact form builder plugin. It lets you easily create contact forms, feedback forms, subscription forms, surveys, polls, and other types of online forms.

This plugin comes with a user-friendly interface with a powerful drag & drop contact form builder. Unlike other form builders, it comes with form landing pages, geolocation tracking, GDPR-friendly, custom WordPress user registration and login forms, etc.

Nevertheless, it comes with many pre-built form templates that can save your time to build your contact form from scratch. Besides, it lets you add, remove, or re-arrange fields as necessary.

UpdraftPlus

UPdraftPlus WordPress Backup Plugin

Sometimes when you’re working on your important blog or updating your blog, it may cause some conflicts or your sites may stop working. And in such a case, if you haven’t backup your files then BYE they’re gone forever! That’s why you need a plugin such as UpdraftPlus to keep your blog site safe.

UpdraftPlus is the most trusted WordPress backup and restore plugin. After all, it automatically backups and safely stores your files on a remote location like Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3, FTP, email, and more.

Not only that, you can backup your contents to more than one cloud service using scheduled automatic backups. Also, it instantly creates a temporary clone of your blog so that ​​you don’t need to test or develop it on your live site. 

Wordfence

Wordfence WordPress Security Plugins

Wordfence is a popular WordPress firewall and security scanner plugin that comes with firewall protection, malware scan, blocking, login security, and plenty more. It’s specifically developed for WordPress and blocks attackers looking for vulnerabilities on your site. Besides, its Threat Defense Feed will continually update as new threats emerge every time. 

Additionally, it protects and monitors your site from DDoS, malware threats, brute force attacks, spam attacks, and every other type of attack. Therefore, if you haven’t invested in a security firewall for your blog, then you need to add one now.

LightSpeed Cache

LiteSpeed Cache WordPress Caching Plugin

LightSpeed Cache is a free WordPress caching plugin that reduces the loading time of your blog by a wide range. It’s a highly customizable server-level caching that boosts your blog with little to no configuration required.

Moreover, it offers extra optimization features like database optimization, minification, and a combination of CSS and JS files, CDN support, browser cache, lazy load, etc. Also, you can store a duplicate copy of every web page locally on your system. 

You can also find a list of the best WordPress plugins for blogs here.

However, there are many more plugins in the market, but the above plugins are must-have plugins installed on your blog.

Alright, we’ve covered how we can customize our blog with Astra theme and installed a must-have blog plugin. Now, let’s dig into creating some of the essential pages that every blog must-have.

#5 Set Up The Essential Pages (Home, Blog, About, Contact)

Once you’ve started a blog, you’d definitely want to provide some basic information about yourself to your audience. Such as: Who are you? Why should people listen to you? or How can they get in touch with you?

At the same time, you might have questions like “What pages should I have on my blog?” 

Hence, let’s take a look at some must-have pages that you can use on your blog.

I) Homepage of Your Blog 

The homepage is the first page your visitors see when they visit your blog. It’s the front page where most visitors will land and it determines whether your visitor will browse around or say goodbye to your blog. 

Therefore, always make sure when creating your homepage, you must think from the audience’s perspective. 

In WordPress, there are 2 options of homepages to choose from:

  • show the latest post
  • or static page

If you choose to show latest posts, then it’ll be a dynamic page that gets constantly updated as new posts are published.

Now, let’s look at how we can select a custom page to be used as a homepage in your blog.

How to Select a Custom Page as Your Homepage in WordPress?

The good thing is that WordPress comes with built-in functionality that helps you create a custom home page. You can use any page on your website as your homepage.

Therefore, let’s look at these three simple steps to set a static page as your homepage.

a. Create a Static Page for Homepage

To get started, simply go to Pages > Add New from your WordPress admin area to create a new page.

Add New Page to WordPress Blog
Add New Page to Your WordPress Blog

After that, name this page as ‘Home’ and publish it. Then, using the WordPress block editor try to add and organize the content and layout of your page.

Creating Homepage in WordPress
Creating Homepage in WordPress

Once everything is completed, we’ll use this page as your custom homepage. Following that, click on the Publish button to publish your page.

b. Create a Placeholder Blog Page

Since we’re creating a blog site, you’ll need to create a separate blog page to display your posts. This page will act as a placeholder to display our blog posts.

Create & Publish Your Blog Page
Create & Publish Your Blog Page

For that, go to Pages > Add New page and give this page titled ‘Blog’. Then, go ahead and click on the Publish button to publish this blank page.

c. Set a Static Page as your Front Page

After you’ve created both the pages, go to Settings > Reading page from your WordPress admin. Then, under the ‘Your homepage displays’ section, select the option ‘A static page’.

Set Static Page as FrontPage
Set Static Page as FrontPage

Next, you’ll need to select the static page that we’ve created in step ‘a’ i.e. Home as the Homepage. And, similarly, select the placeholder blog page that we’ve created in step ‘b’ i.e. Blog as the Posts page.

Finally, don’t forget to click on the Save Changes button to save your settings. 

In this way, you’ll set up a page to be used as your custom homepage.

II) About Page

About page is a must-have page for almost all blogs because it tells you about who you are or about the organization. Most people name this page either “About Us” or “About Me” depending on whether it’s a business blog or a personal blog. 

On this page, you need to describe your audience about your ethos, the purpose, values, and what audiences should expect to find on your blog. 

Thus, let’s look at how you can create an about page for your blog.

How to Create an About Us Page in WordPress?

Just as you would create any other pages, you’d also similarly create your About Us page. Whereas some WordPress themes come with built-in special About Us page templates. 

However, if your theme doesn’t offer that, you can simply create an About Us page by going to Pages and clicking on the Add New button. 

After that, it’ll take you to the WordPress editor where you can add your content to your page. 

Add About Page to Your Blog
Add About Page to Your Blog

Once you’ve added your content, make sure you name your page either “About Us” or “About Me” or just “About”. Also, use the same name for the permalink.

Finally, click on the Publish button to save your page.

III) Blog Page

A blog page is a section of your website that contains the sum of all blog posts. This is a great way to engage and communicate with your customers or potential audiences. 

Based on your blog, you can share information on new products, the latest trends, ​​respond to buyers’ FAQs, or provide some expertise. A good blog page always grabs visitors’ attention and can help increase SEO rankings and conversions. 

However, if you fail to keep your blog updated, it could have adverse effects on your brand and search engine ranking.

IV) Contact Page

Even though you’ve got a great blog, if your audience can’t find a way to get in contact with you, then it’s worthless. Similarly, advertisers and potential brand associates also need to find your contact information.

Therefore, having a contact page makes it quicker and easier for other people to get connected with you. A contact page must contain your phone number, email address, and physical mailing address with a location map, and social media profiles.

Similarly, you can even add a contact form to make it easy for users to contact you without leaving a public comment on your blog.

Thus, let’s look at how you can create a contact page for your blog using WPForms.

Creating Contact Form with WPForms

Firstly, log in to your WordPress dashboard and go to the Plugins > Add New. Next, click on the Add New button. After that, search for “WPForms” in the search bar. Followed by, clicking on the Install Now button and then clicking on the Activate button.

Install WPForms
Install WPForms

Once you’ve completed installing it, you’ll now be able to see a WPForms tab in a sidebar. To create your form, click on it and then click on the Add New option. 

Create WPForms
Create WPForms

Now it’ll ask you to select a template. There you can find many pre-made templates to help you speed your process. If it’s your first time, you can choose to start with a blank form as well. Here, you can even give a custom name to your contact form.

For now, we’ll go with the Simple Contact Form.

Select Form Template
Select Form Template

You’ll then be taken to a simple drag-and-drop form editor. Here you can drag items you want on your contact form from the left and drop them on the right side.

WPForms Editor Page
WPForms Editor Page

Once you’re satisfied with your contact form, click on the orange SAVE button on the top right to save your changes. Also, you can Preview your contact form before giving it a final go.  

Great! if you’ve been able to create a simple contact form following each of the steps discussed above.

Next is to add a new page called ‘Contact Us’ and add the form on that page, and publish the page.

Add Contact Form to WordPress Page & Publish
Add Contact Form to WordPress Page & Publish

Step 7: Start Writing Content on Your Blog

Now that you’ve registered a domain name, chosen your blog platform, and customized blog theme, it’s time to actually do some blogging and start creating your first piece of content.

But before that let’s look at some key ingredients that help you write and improve your content writing.

#1 Key Elements Before Starting Writing Your First Content

We all know that there is no secret formula for writing great content. Anyway, these are some tips that can help you improve the quality and quantity of your blog:

  1. Create an Outline – Before you start writing, you should create an outline for your content. It can help you write a much more useful and well-structured article.
  2. Study Your Audience – To write great content for your blog, you’ll need to know your audience well. Make sure you have a good answer to these questions – who are the audience, what do they need to know, and what is their attitude toward your topic. 
  3. Find Your Voice – With time, you should discover your voice or tone that can help you develop a certain flow in writing. Make sure your tone aligns with your brand persona and your target audience.
  4. Original Content – Never plagiarize your content. This can eventually lead you to face backlashes and consequences. Content is all about your perspective, your creativity, and the value you add. 
  5. Keep it Simple – Keep your content as simple as possible  and remove anything that doesn’t add value.
  6. Edit Your WorkFinally, after you’ve created your first draft, make sure to carry out sufficient editing.
  7. Create a Content CalendarCreate a simple content calendar because it helps you to keep track of topic ideas, articles in progress, and overall idea of your publishing flow.

With that said, now let’s check out how to add a new blog post in WordPress.

#2 How to Create a New Blog Post with WordPress?

Let’s look at how you can create and edit a new blog post with the WordPress block editor. The WordPress block editor is also commonly called Block Editor, or Gutenberg Editor.

This is an entirely block-based editing area where every piece of content is a block. For instance, paragraph block for a paragraph, gallery block for a gallery, and image block for an image.

WordPress Block Editor
WordPress Block Editor

These blocks are so easy and user-friendly that anyone without technical skills can also easily make beautiful blog posts. 

Now, let’s follow these steps to create your first piece of content for your blog.

To create your first blog post, go to Posts > Add New from your WordPress Dashboard.

Create New Post
Create New Post

After that, it’ll take you to the next page called Gutenberg editor. Here you can start by adding the title of your post in the top box. Followed by writing your content for a blog post in the lower box.

Add Page Title and Paragraph to the Post
Add Page Title and Paragraph to the Post

Now that you’ve started adding content, you can even add some other type of content like images, headings, list items, etc. For that, you’ll have to click on the +’ icon present at the top of the bar. There you’ll find all the Gutenberg blocks that you want to add to your blog post. 

Gutenberg Blocks
Gutenberg Blocks

For now, let’s add an image, for that click on Image from the block section. After that, it’ll ask you to either upload an image file, pick one from your media library, or add one with a URL. 

Adding Image to Blog Post
Adding Image to Blog Post

Once you’ve uploaded the image, it’s time to insert the image title, caption, and alt text from the Setting section.

Adding Alt Text and Caption to Image
Adding Alt Text and Caption to Image

Similarly, you can add other types of block elements like buttons, lists, etc. to create a beautiful blog post. 

#3 Optimize Your Content for Better SEO and Readability

The next step is to optimize our content for better SEO and readability, and this is what we’ll discuss in this section.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategic process that is used by website owners to get more traffic to their web pages in search engines.    

If your content isn’t well-optimized, then there is a high chance that search engines won’t know what it’s about and may not show it on search results. As a result, when people search for your content, it won’t appear in the search results, and you’ll miss out on all that traffic.

Therefore, it’s very important that you make your blog search engine friendly so that you can maximize your search traffic.

Here, we give you some basic SEO tips to optimize your content for better SEO and readability. Let’s start with the easiest one.

Check Your Site’s Visibility Settings

WordPress provides you the in-built option to hide your website from search engines. This option is much more preferable if you want some time to work on your website before it’s ready to go public.

Hence, to ensure that search engines can find your blog, you need to make sure that this option is unchecked.

For that, hover on Settings from your WordPress dashboard and click on the Reading option. After that, it’ll take you to the Reading page and you need to scroll down to the Search Engine Visibility section.

Search Engine Visibility Option
Search Engine Visibility Option

Now, you need to make sure the box is unchecked in Search Engine Visibility. At last, don’t forget to click on the Save Changes button to store your changes.

Change Permalinks Structure

The next thing that you need to take care of is to change your permalink structure.

Permalinks are web addresses that trace back your site’s individual posts, pages, and other content. By default, WordPress does set the permalink structure for you which is not so well-optimized. 

Thus, to optimize your permalink, go to Settings and click on the Permalinks. This will take you to the Permalink Settings where you select the Post name option under Common Settings.

WordPress Permalink Settings for Better SEO
WordPress Permalink Settings for Better SEO

Then, click on the Save Changes button to store your changes.

And that’s how you change your permalink structure for better link structure for your readers and for search engines too.

Use Best WordPress SEO Plugin

When it comes to choosing the best WordPress SEO plugin, there are thousands of WordPress SEO plugins available in the market. Because of this, it’s quite hard for beginners to choose the best WordPress SEO plugin.

To help you with that we’d like to recommend popular WordPress SEO plugins like Rank Math, Yoast SEO and SEOPress.

Among them, Yoast SEO is the most preferred WordPress SEO plugin with more than 5 million active installations. In this tutorial, we’ll be using Yoast SEO for screenshots and examples to help you improve your SEO.

Keyword Research and Optimization

Many beginners seem to randomly pick the topics that they think people are looking for. And based on that they think they should add it to their blogs.

However, this is moreover shooting an arrow in the dark. Because you’ll never know whether your target audience has even heard about that topic in the first place. 

That’s why keyword research is a preferred technique that many SEO experts, bloggers, and content creators are in love with. This technique helps you find the keywords that users enter into their search engines to find content, products, and more. 

SEMrush WordPress SEO Plugins and Tools
SEMrush

Therefore, you can find many keyword research tools (both free and paid) that you can use. But, we’d like to recommend using SEMRush. It’s a widely popular tool that helps you discover keywords and even discover the keywords where your competitors are ranking. 

Create XML Sitemaps

An XML sitemap is a list of information about the pages, and other files on your website. It helps search engines to know your website properly while crawling it. 

Yet you should understand that when you add an XML sitemap, it doesn’t boost your search engine rankings. Rather it only helps search engines to find the pages quickly and start ranking them.

If you’re using a WordPress SEO plugin like the Yoast SEO plugin, then it’ll automatically generate an XML sitemap for you.

XML Sitemap Generated by Yoast Plugin
XML Sitemap Generated by Yoast Plugin

Or else, you can install a Google XML sitemap plugin to generate an XML sitemap for your site.

Format the Content for Readability

Another important thing to do for SEO would be formatting your blog posts for readability. For content to automatically rank higher in search results, you need to ensure that people and search engines can read and understand your post easily.

For that these are the top considerations for content readability:

  • Write long-form content when possible with appropriate use of keywords, headings, and so on
  • Add plenty of headings (H2, H3, H4, H5, etc). As Yoast SEO plugin suggests, add a heading above each thematic unit usually before exceeding 300 words. 
  • Remember to fact-check and proofread everything you add to your blog post
  • Use auto-formatted bullet points, every time you need a bulleted list 
  • Fix your spacing by remove double spacing after periods
  • Add more paragraph breaks where your paragraph looks dense
  • Be consistent with formatting to keep things neat and clean
NoFollow External Links

Links are a very essential part of every blog post as it tells crawlers how your post or page is related to similar content. At the same time, they even help search engines to decide which pages of your blogs are important. 

There are mainly 2 types of links you can add to your post:

  • Internal links: Links to other pages or posts on your own blog.
  • External links: Links to pages on other blogs or websites.

When you link to a page or website, you’re providing some of your site’s SEO juice to that link. And that SEO score is often referred to as link juice

But you might not want to pass link juice to all the external links you add to your blog. That’s so because some links may be affiliate links or not so trustworthy links. 

That’s when you need to add the ‘nofollow’ attribute to external links (links that go to any websites that you don’t own). This will instruct search engines not to follow those links and not to pass any link authority to the link target.

Although WordPress doesn’t have an option to make links nofollow. However, if you’re using the Yoast SEO plugin, you can do it easily.

To add the nofollow attribute to external links, ensure that when you’re adding a link, simply click on the Add “nofollow” to link option. With that, make sure the box next to Open in a new tab is also checked.

Add Nofollow Link
Add Nofollow Link

Apart from that, you need to make sure that your blog gets enough to follow links from other related blogs. Getting enough link juice from high-authority websites helps your website rank.

Optimize Images for SEO

Another important thing about any blog is its images. They make sure that your blog posts are more interesting and easier to understand.

Having said that, if you’re not careful with image sizes and it’s quality, then they may take more time to load and can slow down your blog.

SEO Optimized Image
SEO Optimized Image

Hence, you need to make sure that you always optimize your images for faster loading. here are several ways to optimize your images for SEO:

  • Add only relevant images to your blog
  • Insert images correctly and keep your image placement consistent
  • Use original size image without sacrificing quality
  • Add descriptive title and alt tags
Optimize Meta Title and Description 

Just like you optimize images, you’ll also need to optimize your title and description to get maximum clicks.

Although these SEO meta tags don’t appear on the actual page, it helps search engines better understand what the webpage is about.

A great way to add meta tags to your post in WordPress is to use the Yoast SEO plugin. 

Optimize WordPress Content for SEO Using Yoast
Optimize WordPress Content for SEO Using Yoast

Once the plugin is installed, scroll the WordPress editor all the way to the end of your post. There you’ll find the Yoast SEO options and within that, there is a section called Google Preview.

In that section, you’ll get a snippet preview of what your post will look like in the search results. Also, below that, you’ve other options like adding the title, meta descriptions, and permalinks. 

Use Proper Categories and Tags

Some people really don’t use WordPress categories and tags. Since they think that it’s not so important to do that. 

However, categories and tags do help you organize your blog posts on your website. It’s a really good approach for internal organization and optimization. At the same time, it also helps search engines to understand your website structure and content.

Categories and Tags
Categories and Tags

Categories are used to describe the topics that you cover in your blog. In simple terms, it’s used for a broad grouping of topics. 

For example, if you’re creating a blog on news, you might use categories such as political, world, business, sports, health, etc. 

On the other hand, tags are more specific keywords that you want to use to associate related content. For example, a blog post under the sports category can have tags like football, tennis, cricket, athletics, etc.

Hence, if you use categories and tags properly, it makes it easier for your users to browse your blog. Similarly, it also makes it easier for search engines to browse your blog.

#4 Publish Your Blog Post

After you’ve completed writing a post on your blog, giving a title to your post, adding an image to your blog post, and optimizing your post for better SEO, it’s time to publish your blog post.

As we already know, the WordPress editor is divided into two columns. If you look at the left column that is where you write content, and in the right column you’ve all post settings including publishing options.

WordPress Editor Screen Division
WordPress Editor Screen Division

Now, let’s look at all the publishing options that are present in the right column.

WordPress Publishing Options
WordPress Publishing Options
  1. Save Draft – On clicking to this link it’ll save your post as a draft. At the sametime, it also automatically saves your changes as you go on writing.
  2. Preview – The button will allow you to open a live preview of your post in a new window tab.
  3. Visibility – This option lets you determine whether you want to make your post public, private, or password protected. As default, it’s always selected as a Public option.
WordPress Post Visibility Option
WordPress Post Visibility Option
  1. Publish Schedule – This option lets you schedule the publishing time for your post. By default the option is selected to be published immediately. However, you can schedule your posts to be published later at any given time and date. 
WordPress Publish Schedule Option
WordPress Publish Schedule Option
  1. Post Format – It allows you to define the visual representation of your post. It comes with a number of post formats such as Standard, Aside, gallery, Link, Image, Video, etc. 
  2. Stick to the top of the blog – If you want a specific post to appear on the top of other posts, you select this check box. 
  3. Pending Review – Generally, this option is for multi-author blogs where contributors can just save posts and not publish them.
  4. Move to Trash – If you want to delete any post, then you simply click on this button. 
  5. Publish – Finally, you click this button after you’ve completed editing your post to make it go live on the internet. 

Step 8: Promote Your Content

By now, you’ve learned how to start a blog, how to create blog posts, and how to score better ranking in search engines. 

Still having your blog post published out on the internet isn’t sufficient. Because there are millions of blogs available with similar content on the internet. Therefore, you need to promote your blog so that it gets noticed on the internet.

Promote Your Blog
Promote Your Blog

Let’s look closely at the basic promotion strategies that will help you grow your audience once you start a blog. It’s not mandatory that you need to use every strategy – try a few of them and see what works well for you.

#1 Start with Your Close Group of Circle

Once you’ve made your blog live on the internet, the very first people who you want to tell about your blog are your close circle. This circle mostly includes your family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues within your field. 

You should inform them that you’ve started your blog and request them to become your followers and ask them to comment on your blogs. Lastly, don’t forget to thank them for their constant support and love. 

#2 Use Social Media to Promote Your Blog

Social media is by far the best platform for immersing yourself in a particular industry, while also allowing you to reach more people at once.

Social Media Marketing
Marketing via Social Media Platforms

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Reddit, Instagram, are some of the biggest networks that help you find the right audiences for your blog. All you need to do is pick the best platform that suits your niche and audience interests.

And then start sharing your content or schedule your content to share at later dates, with tools like Buffer or Hootsuite

If somehow your content starts thriving then you can become viral on social media. Then, people will start making your memes, videos, hashtags, etc. For more, view

#3 Guest Posting

The best thing about starting a blog is that you’ll find a community of other bloggers who love to help each other out. And guest posting is the best way to connect with an already established audience. 

A guest posting is an act of writing content for another person’s blog to build relationships, exposure, authority, and links. 

To land your first guest blog post, look for places where your audience is, create amazing content and pitch it to other bloggers.

#4 Reach Out to Influencers

As a beginner blogger, it’s quite hard to build an audience. To help you with that, get someone influential who can introduce you to their audience.

You should reach out to such influencers who have a lot of followers and have a high retweet and reply ratio. To connect with your targeted influencer, mention them on social platforms and ask for opinions on your content.

Influencer Marketing
Influencer Marketing

At the same time, it’s not just beginner bloggers but even experienced bloggers who blog full-time will be doing it.

In short, you’ll find a lot of competition. Hence, you need to come with an effective plan and effort if you want your outreach.

#5 Introduce Rewards or Referral Program

When you incentivize people to share your content, it’ll likely result in people sharing. It’s one of the great ways to promote your content and to get people to share.

For instance, you can organize a webinar and ask attendees to refer to at least one of their friends as well. In that way, both of them receive free merchandise of your brand or even a discount of some sort.

You don’t always have to reward them in any form but, remember to thank them for their constant love and support. Since there are lots of people who would participate generously with no hope of return. All you’ve to do is ask people to refer others to like and share your blog.

Similarly, you can simply invite a few of them to your special events or feature them on your blog.

#6 Advertising on the Web

In comparison to traditional direct-marketing tactics, advertising your content on the web has been found doing wonders these days. 

You can pay to promote your content on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. After all, displaying ads is a great option for getting your content seen.

Pay-per-click (PPC) can help your content get more reach on a variety of platforms. On using this technique, you only have to pay when someone actually clicks on the post.

PPC
PPC

Likewise, you can consider driving paid ad traffic to a landing page first. In this way, you actually engage your audience with your content. 

However, we don’t recommend it if you’re just starting out. Because we think that spending money on Facebook ads or Google ads at the very start of your journey is harmful to your blog. 

But once you’ve got a solid foundation in place, you can apply this to drive more traffic to your blog. 

#7 Build Your Email List

After you’ve started a blog, you’ll also begin attracting new readers and visitors to your blog. And once they start coming, you’ll also want to make sure that they’re coming back.

This is the time when email marketing plays a big role. You can collect the email addresses of your visitors with their permission. So, that they can be notified when you publish new blog posts or share promotional offers.

What is Email Marketing?
Email Marketing

In this way, it’ll make sure people are coming back to your blog. Also, it’s a great way to build trust and closer relationships with your visitors. 

Now that we looked at some of the ways to promote your content, it’s time to make money with your blog. 


C. How to Make Money with a Blog? (Best 5 Ways)

Now that you’ve successfully set and run your blog, here are some ways to make money with your blog.

1) Sponsored Blog Posts 

Some bloggers don’t find it interesting to display ads on their blog and wonder how to monetize a blog without ads.

Hence, one of the best ways of monetizing your blog is through writing sponsored blog posts. As your blog grows, you might start getting approached by companies that’d like to sponsor you.

After that, companies will compensate you to represent their product, talk about it, and promote it to your audience.

For example, you’ve got a blog on fashion and trends. Suppose H&M comes out with their new autumn collection and they offer to pay you to write an article about their range. In this way, you’ll also be able to add some affiliate links to your blog.

However, this method usually works if you have a strong niche audience. Still, you can take an initiative by reaching out to the top companies in your field and asking about sponsorship options.

2) Place Ads on Your Blog

Another best way to make money blogging is by placing ads on your blog posts. It’s one of the easiest ways to make money from your blog.

You can place ads anywhere, but we recommend placing them across the top of blog pages or in the sidebar. When you add ads to your blog, it provides you a healthy revenue stream for your blog post. 

There are two ways through which you place ads and make money from your blog.

The first one is by directly offering advertising space on your blog to businesses.  This one is known as a direct advertisement.

And the second one is to use ad networks like Google AdSense that would show ads automatically based on your content and user interest.

With Google AdSense, all you do is add a script from Google to your blog and then start displaying ads. After that, you’ll get paid for every click on the ad. These are called CPC (cost per click) ads. For more, check our detailed article on Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

Similarly, while placing an ad, you get the freedom to choose your preferred ad sizes, shapes, and placement of your ad on your blog.

3) Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a popular advertising strategy where you promote other companies’ products by including a link in your content to a product or service for sale on another site.

Following that, if someone buys the product based on your recommendation, then you’ll receive a certain amount of commission. 

Today if you look, affiliate marketing has become one of the effective ways of earning online even with a small investment. Since most of the bloggers are using it these days to make millions of dollars every year from their blog.

If you’re interested in getting started with affiliate marketing, here are some of the popular affiliate marketing marketplaces to join:

In those markets, you can look for those products that you’ve already used and the ones that your audiences may be interested in as well. After that look for affiliate programs that you can sign up for.

Hence, affiliate marketing is the best way to make money online. Because it lets you promote a wide variety of products. Also, almost all popular eCommerce stores like Walmart, ASOS, Amazon, Apple, BestBuy, and others have an affiliate program.

4) Create a Paid Membership Website

A paid membership or subscription plan is another way to generate revenue over the long run from your blog. This can be the best alternative to earn money from your blog if you’re not interested in selling ads or sponsored posts.

In this method, you can charge your audience to pay a certain fee to access some content or areas of your blog. Based on your content, you can make your audience pay a fixed amount on a regular basis, typically monthly or annually.

Basically, you can even reward paid members with a variety of perks, such as access to webinars, learning resources, free blog content, and a community area. 

In this way, you can produce recurring income with a more stable, predictable, and accurate revenue stream.

For more information, please check our detailed guide and review of ARMember membership plugin.

5) Sell Online Courses

If your blog tends to provide educational or training services, you can start earning money by selling online courses or coaching packages.

Remember that you don’t always have to sell physical products, you can even opt to sell digital services as well. 

For example, if you run a health and fitness blog, you might sell fitness-related equipment. On the other hand, if you manage a technology blog, you might try selling digital guides on how to master that technology.

When you create self-guided course materials, it allows your users to proceed with their courses at their own pace. And with each progress through their courses, you can build more courses based on their interest. 

Besides selling courses online, you can also offer live video training and make them pay for your time.

6) Sell Products/eCommerce

Nowadays, many bloggers can be seen on an eCommerce platform, creating an online store, and start selling products. When it comes to selling products, your products could be physical or digital.

To sell your products, the main thing you need to set up is a system for accepting payments from all over the world. Especially when you’re selling physical goods, you’ll need to manage your stock, organize shipping and handle taxes and duties. 

On the other hand, selling digital goods is less complex logistically since they’re generally delivered electronically.

These are just a few options when it comes to making money from your blog. You should master at least one of the blog monetization strategies. However, depending upon your blog, you go with any number of revenue streams to discover what works best for your business.


D. Additional Blogging Tools to Grow Your Blog

1) MC4WP: Mailchimp for WordPress

Mailchimp WordPress Newsletter Plugin

MC4WP is a popular WordPress newsletter plugin that can help you grow your Mailchimp lists and write better newsletters through various methods. It’s a free WordPress plugin that guarantees to convert your site visitors into subscribers for your Mailchimp lists.

Using this plugin you can create emails, landing pages, postcards, and more to effectively interact with your target audience. You can easily create good-looking, user-friendly, and mobile-optimized sign-up forms with complete control over the form field.

Besides, it tightly integrates with all major eCommerce tools like Shopify and WooCommerce. With its free plan, you can list up to 2000 subscribers. This is the reason why it is the best newsletter service for thousands of businesses.

2) MonsterInsights

MonsterInsights Google Analytics Plugin

MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin that easily connects your WordPress site and tracks all the data you need to know about your website. in just a few clicks, you can set up analytics, and get insights on how your site is performing.

It comes with a comprehensive set of tools that it’s both easy to use and powerful. It allows you to track the numbers of visitors visiting your blog, your top content, what users do on your blog, and so on.

Unlike other Google Analytics plugins, it comes with advanced Google Analytics tracking features that you can enable with just a few clicks. Also, it automatically tracks your affiliate links, banner ads, and other outbound links using link tracking.

3) Grammarly

Grammarly

Grammarly is the best online grammar checker that ensures everything you write on the web is grammatically correct, precise, easy-to-read, and attractive. This is an awesome tool for those who usually tend to face some grammatical issues while writing fast emails or long reports. 

It’s a must-have handy tool if you don’t want to look unprofessional or possibly risk your business. Besides, it’s an AI-powered writing assistant that has all the necessary document editing tools that are required for creating web-ready content.

4) ThirstyAffiliates

ThirstyAffiliates - Affiliate Marketing Tool

ThirstyAffiliates is the best WordPress affiliate link cloaking plugin. It allows bloggers to add, manage, and easily insert affiliate links into their posts and pages. Therefore, it’s a quite popular affiliate marketing plugin among affiliate marketers like publishers, distributors, or advertisers.

With ThirstyAffiliates, you can organize the affiliate link in a single place and you won’t even need to enter the URLs manually in the keyword. Moreover, it comes with built-in reports that tell you how much your affiliate links have been clicked and what is popular on your blog.

Not just only that, it includes an automatic link health checker that automatically looks at your affiliate links for 404’s or broken links. After that, it’ll notify you every time when it detects any problems.

5) AddToAny Share Buttons

Add to Any Share Button WordPress Plugins

AddToAny Share Buttons are the best WordPress social sharing plugin that makes it super fast and easy to share your content. It lets you add beautiful and lightning-fast social share buttons to your blog.

Unlike other sharing plugins, it doesn’t slow down your website and guarantees to look great no matter what screen size or resolution. Also, you can use it to share your content across any services like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, WhatsApp, Reddit, LinkedIn, and more. 

Therefore, it’s also known as a ‘universal social sharing platform’ because it supports more than 100+ social networks. Likewise, you can add an official share counter alongside your share buttons.


Conclusion

That’s the end of our beginner’s guide on how to start a blog and make money. We hope that it’ll help you establish your own blog and generate revenue.

And believe us, this is exactly what we did when building our blog SiteSaga. If you love this blog and like our work, then we guarantee that you can achieve something similar very soon. You just need to START TODAY!

If you’ve any further queries on how to start a blog and make money, then please leave a comment below. We’ll try to get back to you as soon as possible.

You may also want to explore our comprehensive guides on SEO and digital marketing! These articles will provide you greater insights on how to grow your blog and succeed with it!

Lastly, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter. And, please share this guide on your social media accounts and spread the message! 

Written By SiteSaga Editorial
SiteSaga Editorial is a team of highly experienced writers, marketers, and web developers. We're here to help beginners get online with their self-made websites or blogs and succeed.

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