Want to learn how to start a money making blog in 2020? Is it even possible?
Yes, it’s possible.
While anyone can start a blog, only a few can turn it into an income-generating revenue.
This is because shrewd blogging requires skills, expertise, and experience and unrelenting passion and consistency
Pros of Starting a Money Making Blog
- Blogging provides a place to learn, experiment and implement. Starting a successful blog requires you to take on new lessons, acquire new skills and network with professionals.
- You get first-hand information on what works and what doesn’t.
- Skills acquired will apply everywhere else. Think of the writing and marketing skills honed that will be useful in your career advancement as well.
- Your earning potential is limitless. As you get towards the top of the learning curve, you will be in a better position to devise new ways and means to increase your reach, and hence higher income
- You get paid to do what you love.
How to Start a Money making Blog: 9 Simple Steps
To start a blog that will substantially sustain you, you need to follow the steps below.
Step 1: Decide on your blogging niche.
Take time to find a niche that works for you, then niche down even further. For instance, you may want to blog about digital marketing. However, that’s quite broad so you may want to narrow down to SEO, or even further, link building. A super-niche blog will help you get noticed easily and quickly.
You will also be able to master your craft and write authoritative content that is better than your competitors as opposed to if you are writing on dozen-plus topics.
Some of the reasons why you need to choose a blogging niche include:
- It helps you showcase your expertise and build a brand around it. It’s much easier being a master of something than a master of all. You become the go-to resource when it comes to a particular topic
- Blogging niche helps you dominate Google ranks faster. There are not so many people writing about the stuff you write about, and so you can focus on producing useful content, engaging your readers and ranking your ways up the pages of Google
- It’s easier building a fan base- your own empire which helps you build s loyal audience.
- This audience will make it easier for you to earn money blogging
To find your blogging niche, consider factors such as your personal interests, hobbies, skills and expertise, your ideal audience, etc. Remember you’re in for a long term goal, so you don’t want to settle on a boring subject since you will be doing the majority of the content creation work.
Step 2: Decide on your blog name.
Branding is important for your blogging business. Get it right from the word go. You may use a name that clearly portrays your blog topic or even use your name if you want to build a brand around it.
Choosing a brand name can be tricky, since most of the desirable names you will think of, would have already been registered.
Your blog name is a key branding tool for your online business and web presence. Finding a good blog name isn’t easy since every name imaginable has got its domain name already taken.
The good news, however, is that you can leverage blog name generators and business name generators to help you come up with names around your preferred keywords.
You want to think of a blog name as something that gives your readers a clear picture of who you are, what you do, and what you stand for. There are several blog name ideas online, and this even makes it harder to really narrow down to a blog name that you wouldn’t come to regret it later.
Once you have settled on a few names, check your domain name availability, using Bluehost Domain checker below. Simply enter your domain address and press Check to find out if your domain is available
Step 3: Get Your Blog Online
To get your blog online, you need two things: A web hosting company and blogging software.
A web hosting company is a platform that stores all your websites’ assets such as files, retrieves and delivers them to your users as and when requested. If you are serious about how to start a money making blog, you need to self host your website. Free web hosts such as WordPress, medium and Blogspot do not give you flexibility that you need to start making money blogging
For your website to be available online, you need a reliable and affordable hosting. We recommend Bluehost WordPress Hosting. With Bluehost, you get to have domain for free and install WordPress at a click of a button.
You also need a blogging software. WordPress is used by more than half of the websites globally, and is very easy to set up and use so that you can be blogging in the next hour.
NB: If you bought a domain from a registrar such as Namecheap, but hosted your website on a different web host company such as Bluehost, you need to set up your domain nameservers from your domain registrar to point to your web hosting name servers.
Which Web Hosting Platform Should You Use?
We’ve been using Bluehost for over 5 years now for a variety of our websites and blogs and we recommend them for various reasons.
- Bluehost registers your domain name for free so you do not need to pay extra $15 for domain name registration
- Bluehost customer support is responsive. Support is available both via phone and online chat.
- Bluehost has a free, simple one-click installation of WordPress blogging software
- It’s a trusted web hosting provider that has been recommended by WordPress themselves since 2005
- Bluehost is a home of over 2,000, 000 websites
You can use any Bluehost link in this tutorial or click the button below to grab your web hosting at a discounted price of up to $2.75/month
1: Purchase Web Hosting to Start Blogging
Grab your discounted Bluehost web hosting and get started by following the steps below
Then click on the “Get Started” button
2: Select Your web Hosting Plan
You’ve got 3 options to choose from. I recommend you opt for the Basic plan as a new blogger since you don’t have massive traffic yet. Thus no need to pay more for resources that you won’t use
3: Set up your domain name.
Type in your domain on the left “Create a new domain” text area then click on ‘Next” to proceed with the registration process.
PS: If you already own a domain and want to use that to set up your website, then enter that domain address instead, but on the right “Use a Domain You Own” text area
4: Fill out Your Billing Details
5: Customize your order by choosing hosting packages, duration and other options
- Your hosting comes with unlimited resources, WordPress installation and branded email accounts.
- 36 months duration gets you the lowest monthly prize equivalent while the annual plan is also relatively discounted.
- Uncheck the up-sells that you do not need at the moment to arrive at an affordable total charge to work with. These package extras include codeguard, sitelock security and bluehost seo tools which you actually do not need at this stage
6: Now Create a Password for your Bluehost Webhosting Account
You will then have an option to choose a WordPress theme to begin with. You will always change this theme later. Alternatively, you can skip this stage so that you can choose a professional theme later on.
Now your WordPress blogging software will be installed on your domain. Once installed, click on the “Start Building” button to be logged in to your WordPress website.
If the link doesn’t work then go to your Bluehost account and click on “Login to WordPress”
Step 4: Install a WordPress Theme
Your account is now ready and it’s time to customize (start designing it to fit your taste and preferences.)
Login to Your Account.
You should already be logged in. If not, go to bluehost.com website and click on the Login link at the top-right side to be taken to the log-in page. Use your credentials that you just set up. If you’ve forgotten your password, you can click on the ‘forgot password‘ link to reset it.
Customize the look of your website
You are now in your WordPress admin dashboard. There is a lot that you can do here. First, you want to install a template (theme) that will be the foundation for the design of your website. There are thousands of themes available for free on WordPress. Choose the one that gives you the functionalities that you need.
To change your theme, you gonna need to go to the Appearance link on the left menu, hover on it and click on the Themes on the submenu that appears when you hover.
Choose the theme you like and click on the “Install” button. Once it’s installed, click on “Activate” to start using your install theme.
From the left menu, go to appearance, then customize to set up your basic blog details such as site title, slogan, your brand colours, etc, depending on the thee you chose.
Step 5: Things to do After Installing WordPress
New bloggers want to jump right in immediately after installing WordPress and start writing their first post. However, before you can do that, you want to set up your house in order. To do so, you need to take care of the following, from the word go:
Things to do after installing WordPress
Configure General Settings.
These settings include site title, user registration option, and timezone. To configure these settings, go to the settings tab on your left menu, and upon pointing it, a submenu appears, click on General.
Now change your site title and description accordingly
Now scroll down to change timezone. This is important so that you can schedule posts to get published according to your timezone.
Check your permalink structure:
You want your URLs to appear nicely. clean permalinks structure is good for SEO. If you have already published some posts, it’s not recommended to change your permalink structure, because unless redirected, your website will have so many broken links.
But since you are new, this should be the first thing you need to do.
- Go to Settings>> Permalinks
- If it’s not already selected, chose Post name. Click the “Save Change” button at the bottom of the page.
Change your username from admin.
Website hackers can exploit the default admin username easily. WordPress, out of security reasons, does not allow you to change your username.
However, we can always have a workaround. To change it, create a new user with administrative privileges then delete the admin user. Remember, the new user should be set to Adiministrator
- Go to Users >> All Users >> Add New.
- Fill out the new user information.
- Choose “Administrator” for role.
- Save your changes, then log out of WordPress.
- Log back in with the new username and password you just created.
- Go to Users >> All Users.
- Hover over the old admin username in the list and click the delete link.
- Attribute all posts and links to the new user and confirm the deletion.
You now have a new username that does not default to admin.
Other things to do after installing WordPress
- Delete default content such as the hello world post, comments and sample pages
- Set up automated backup. If you are using Bluehost then this is done for you, if not, then you can install a WordPress backup plugin like Updraft and configure it accordingly.
- Configure Akismet antispam plugin to block spam comments that will start trickling in
- Install and set up these other essential WordPress plugins for bloggers.
- Ensure that your contact forms are working. You can use Jetpack or any other WordPress forms plugin. Test the forms after configuration to ensure that they are working.
Step 6: Set Up SEO for your WordPress Blog
To make money blogging, you want to take SEO seriously. A good SEO plugin will help you monitor your on-page optimization progress as well as set up SEO metrics such as metadata and SEO titles.
To start, install the WordPress SEO Plugin by Rankmath. While there are several SEO plugins such as Yoast and All in one SEO, Rankmath’s is the best free SEO plugin with regular updates and tonnes of features.
After installing the plugin, then use the setup wizard to configure it accordingly.
Step 7: Write Your First Pillar Post
With a new blog, you want to churn out as much content as you can, however, if you want to make money blogging, you need to take time to create insanely helpful content that people will love, link to and share without being asked to. Develop content that meets your readers’ search intent
Do keyword research (it’s not that scary as it seems) and discover non-competitive keywords that you can rank for.
How to Generate New Blog Post Ideas
- Use keyword planner. To start using Google’s keyword planner, you will need to have Adwords account. Don’t worry, you don’t actually have to run campaigns.
- Keywords everywhere is a chrome browser that shows you search volume and competition ranking of your keywords across all major search engines such as Google, Bing, YouTube, Amazon, Google planner, etc.
- Focus on longtail keywords (4-5 words long keywords) that have 200-1000 search volume and less competitive.
- Research the communities where your customers/readers are most active. Usually, these are Facebook groups, Reddit and Quora.
- Draft content based on search intent. After you’ve found your main keyword, pop it on Google and use Google auto-fill to see what people are searching for.
- After you’ve found your long-tail keyword, search on Google to discover the search intent. Analyze the formats of articles that rank for that keyword: ultimate guides, list post, quiz, round-ups, etc. Adopt the format, and create something that is 3X better: Longer, In-depth but Simpler (3LIS)
- Use Hubspot’s Blog ideas generator tool to get 250 new blog post topics. All you need is to enter a noun (main keyword). You can even export these to Excel so that you can always easily access them.
Use a tool like answer the public to find out what people are actually looking for. Simply type in your keyword and this tool will return all questions that people are asking around your topic.
Then armed with this knowledge, then break down your article into subtopics
Research these topics one by one and write a great article that tackles the topic in depth.
To add your first post, from your WordPress menu, click on the top sticky admin menu on the +new tab and click on post.
If you’re new to content creation, then I recommend you start with this free content writing course after creating your blog
Step 8: Attract Relevant Traffic to Your Blog
Now you’ve got your blog set up, your first blog post is live, and every blogger’s nightmare kicks in: No one is reading your blog. Starting a money-making blog is a strategy. You have to see things through, that’s why this blog post didn’t stop at step 7.
Building the right systems take time, but, the next best time to set them up is today. Building your own tribe starts with content development, through content promotion to building an engaging email list
Tips to help you attract the right audience so you can make money blogging
- Create mindblowing content around non-competitive (long-tail ) keywords. Make it informative, readable, scannable and comprehensive.
- Optimize your post for search engines
- Build an email list, segment based on your different audience avatars (reader profile)
- Register and set up a strong Pinterest account
- Identify one or two social media platforms that are most suited for your niche, and focus on them. Instagram is great for recipe, DIY and fashion blogs while Twitter seems to be great for more technical niches such as SEO and digital marketing.
- Harness the power of guest posting to attract the right audience and have them join your email list.
- Offer an Irresistible lead magnet that is easy to implement, and offers a quick solution backed with proof.
- Monitor your content performance with Google search console: tweak content accordingly to optimize for more relevant keywords. Continue to improve your content on a monthly or so basis.
- Harness the power of Instagram marketing to grow your blog
One of the main web traffic mistakes that many bloggers make is waiting until they have thousands of visitors before they can set up email list. As long as you have great content, people will always want to come back to your blog.
But to do so, they have to be alerted that there is a new blog post. You can easily get 1000 subscribers in your first year of blogging if you can get only 3 people to subscribe to your list every day.
Don’t get intimidated by bloggers with huge lists, they started with 3 subscribers every day, and they kept going. List building is crucial since you can easily launch products and new websites that quickly take off.
Step 9: How to Make Money From Your Blog
The final step in this guide on how to start a money making blog is actually on making money blogging.
After successfully setting up your blog, the next question that every blogger would ask would be, “How do I make money from my blog?”
There are several ways you can make money from your blog. In fact, we have an extensive blog post on how to make money blogging.
Out of all the possible ways to monetize your blog, we actually recommend the following:
1: Create a digital product.
Actually, when it comes to blogging, you either running an online business or displaying ads.
In the world of online business, digital products are your stock. While they never run short, they may become obsolete, thus requiring improvement from time to time.
With digital products, you don’t have to wait until you have thousands of visitors as with ads in order to make money from your blog. All you need are a few great blog posts, an irresistible lead magnet, and a desirable product.
If you can, you can actually start creating your product before starting your blog. This means, you take time to narrow down on what you want to blog about, your target audience and your business model being digital products.
Then you create irresistible products and give away, write a few blog posts then go ahead and set up your blog. You may want to schedule your posts to go out every week.
This process is important so that you spend most of your time during the blog launch month doing promotion, guest posting and setting up systems to make your first sale.
Some of the digital products you can sell include:
- eBooks and Guides
- Email courses
- video courses
- membership sites
- professional services
- SaaS etc.
2: Affiliate Marketing
This is an effective way to monetize your blog by recommending tools and services that you believe in, to your blog readers. Affiliate marketing allows you to earn a commission for every sale you make.
You can promote any type of product, from Amazon’s physical goods and ebooks, digital products, software to subscription services.
Some of the places to find products to promote include:
Get started Today
Hurrey, you’ve just learned how to start a money making blog. It’s now time to implement the tips in this post. It’s always tempting to push the thought of blogging forward for fear of not being good enough. The truth is, you never will be ready. Get started and learn along the way.