How to Start a Blog and Make Money

Are you curious about how to start a blog and make money? Blogging is a great way to share your thoughts and ideas with the world. But did you know that you can also make money from blogging?

It’s true! In fact, there are a number of ways to earn a income from your blog. In this post, I’m going to show you the steps I took to create a successful blog from scratch. I’ll also share some tips for creating successful blog content. And yes, making money blogging is definitely possible! So if you’re ready, let’s get started.

I started creating blogs over 15 years ago in various niches including travel and lifestyle. JoLarsen.com is my most recent blog where I am blogging about everything that I have learned over those years on my blogging journey. How I grew my blogs, grew my business and grew my life!

Why You Should Start a Blog

Why do people start blogs? It may be for you to:

  • Put your writing talents to the test.
  • Enhance your company’s website visibility
  • Make money online with affiliate marketing
  • Start a side hustle and make money from home
  • Help others with your knowledge and skills
  • For fun!

Blogging may assist you in achieving any of the above goals, or even more. There are numerous bloggers who earn six-figure monthly salaries through their blogs.

Starting your own blog may be the key to attaining financial independence several decades earlier, as well as self-employment!

Creating a blog can be easy. All you need is a domain name and hosting, and you can be up and running in minutes. But if you want to make money from your blog, there are a few things you need to do first.

Here are the steps I followed:

How To Start a Blog and Make Money in 9 Easy Steps

This step-by-step guide will help you set up your blog in less than 1 day.

Step 1: Choose your niche and what you want to blog about

Step 2: Choose a blogging platform

Step 3: Choose a web host

Step 4: Pick a blog/domain name

Step 5: Choose a Theme or Design for your blog

Step 6: Install WordPress Plugins

Step 7: Write Your First Blog Post

Step 8: Promote Your Blog

Step 9: Make Money Blogging

Start blogging, make money
Start blogging, make money

Step 1: Choose your niche

Choosing your niche is one of the most essential steps in creating a successful blog. After all, your niche will determine what topics you write about, who your target audience is, and what kind of tone you take with your writing.

Your blog content could be about anything you are passionate about, regardless of the subject. This may include personal finance, travel, fashion, food, productivity, DIY projects and hobbies for adults as well as children’s education and parenting. Real estate is but one example of a broad category that would fit here (and there are many more!).

However, with so many options out there, it can be tough to decide on the right niche for your blog. Here are a few tips to help you choose:

First, think about what topics you are passionate about. What are you an expert on? What do you enjoy writing about? Once you have a few ideas, do some research to see if there is already a market for that type of content. If not, is there potential to develop one?

Next, consider your target audience. Who do you want to read your blog? What kinds of content would they be interested in? Once you have a good idea of who your target audience is, start brainstorming niche ideas that would appeal to them.

How to Choose a Niche that will be profitable?

There are a lot of factors to consider, and it’s hard to predict which niche will take off. However, there are a few key things to look for when choosing a niche. First, consider whether there is a large enough market for your product or service. If you’re selling to a small niche, you may have trouble finding customers.

Second, make sure there is enough competition in the market. Too much competition can make it difficult to stand out, but too little competition can mean that there aren’t enough potential customers.

Finally, think about whether you have the skills and resources necessary to succeed in the chosen niche. If you’re not confident in your ability to compete, it may be best to choose a different niche.

By considering these factors, you can select a niche that will be both profitable and enjoyable to work in.

Here is a list of potential blog niches which could be profitable to get you started:

  • Productivity
  • Parenting
  • Fitness
  • Food
  • Recipes
  • Health and Wellness
  • Lifestyle
  • Travel
  • Beauty
  • Fashion
  • DIY/Crafts
  • Education
  • Real Estate
  • Technology
  • Business/Finance
  • Pets
  • Entertainment
  • Environment
  • Sports
  • Religion

Step 2: Choose a blogging platform

I’ve had a few blogs in the past that never gained traction and died off. My mistake was in starting with the wrong blogging platform from the start, which was a factor in why they failed and other successful bloggers will tell you the same. The other blogging platforms also ended up costing me more to upkeep in the long run.

The blogging platform I recommend for a profitable blog is WordPress. WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that enables you to create a website or blog from scratch, or to improve an existing website. It’s a free and open-source platform, and is one of the most popular CMSes in the world, powering millions of websites and blogs.

WordPress is easy to use and very versatile, making it a good choice for both beginners and experienced web users. You can find WordPress themes and plugins for just about any purpose, and there’s a large community of WordPress users who can offer support and advice.

Whether you want to create a simple website or a complex online store, WordPress is a great option.

WordPress is the most popular blogging platform in the world, with over 450 million websites running it worldwide (39% worldwide). There’s a simple reason why. CNN, The New York Post, Fortune, TIME, WIRED, BBC America, TechCrunch, and ProBlogger are just a few of the famous sites that utilize WordPress.

Alternative blogging platforms out there include:

At the end of the day, my choice is still WordPress. The only other one I would recommend is Shopify if you are looking for an ecommerce platform that can help you set up an online store quickly and easily, then Shopify is definitely worth considering.

With Shopify, you don’t need any prior experience with web development or design to create a profitable blog – all you need to do is sign up for an account, choose a template for your store, and start adding products.

You can also take advantage of Shopify’s powerful built-in features, such as its ability to support multiple languages, accept a wide range of payment methods, and provide detailed analytics about your store’s performance.

Plus, if you ever need any help, Shopify’s team of experts are always on hand to offer assistance when you start a blog. In short, Shopify is ideal if you’re looking for an all-in-one solution that will make setting up your online store quick and easy.

Why Choose a Self Hosted WordPress Blog?

A self-hosted WordPress website is one that is hosted by the user, as opposed to a WordPress.com site that is hosted by WordPress. There are a number of advantages to self-hosting, including increased control, flexibility, and scalability.

Perhaps the most important advantage of self-hosting is that it gives you complete control over your website. You can install any plugins or themes you like, and you can customize your site to meet your specific needs.

This level of control is simply not possible with a WordPress.com site. In addition, self-hosted WordPress websites are more flexible and can be easily scaled as your needs change. If you want to add new features or expand your reach, it’s easy to do so with a self-hosted website.

All in all, self-hosting gives you the power and flexibility to create a truly unique website that meets your specific needs and goals.

To summarize Step 2, you should consider the long term when selecting a blog platform. If you want to fully customize your blog and make money off of it, free platforms like Blogger, Tumblr, Wix, and Weebly will restrict your options.

With one-click WordPress installation, you may quickly link up WordPress with a web host like Bluehost and have your blog up and running in minutes. This choice gives you everything in one location!

Step 3: Choose Your Web Hosting Provider

When learning how to start a blog and make money, you’ll need to pick a blog platform (ideally WordPress) and a niche before you start your blog. You’ll need to select a web hosting company after deciding on your niche and using WordPress as a blogging platform. It’s crucial to get it right the first time!

Your web hosting company will determine:

  • The speed with which your blog loads, also known as page load speed. A website’s page that takes too long to load is quickly abandoned by visitors.
  • If your website is up and running all of the time, it’s online and accessible at all times. Uptime is a term that refers to how long your site has been continuously active.
  • How vulnerable is your website to hackers?
  • How much guidance you receive from support if you have issues or want assistance in resolving them.

My recommended web hosting providers

I will recommend two hosting providers. One I am currently using is Siteground. The other is another popular option with bloggers and it is Bluehost.

My recommended web hosting service provider: SiteGround! With SiteGround, you get:

  • Offers excellent customer support, website uptime, security, and speed.
  • The service is also backed by a 30-day (no questions asked) money-back guarantee and a 99.99% uptime promise.
  • Free daily backups and restores on all plans.
  • 1-click WordPress install
  • Both novice and seasoned website owners will benefit from the services and features.
  • With SiteGround’s optimized hosting plan, your websites will be served by a single server. This means you’ll receive more resources than you would if you used a shared hosting package from another host.
  • SiteGround provides a wide range of services to help you scale your business. You can expand your SiteGround package to meet your needs.
  • The web host’s user interface is jam-packed with a slew of free and simple 1-click installations.
  • There is no charge for Cloudflare.
  • SiteGround has a staging tool.

Web Hosting starts at $3.99/month. You can also choose other hosting plans based on your preferences below. The basic plan works great for most beginners. If you haven’t already signed up for a SiteGround account, simply choose a hosting plan and follow the steps.

Siteground Web Hosting

My other recommended web hosting service provider: Bluehost! With Bluehost, you get:

  • A free domain name for 1 year ($11.99 value!)
  • 1-click WordPress install
  • 24/7 expert support
  • Free SSL certificate (this is an extra layer of security for your visitors)
  • Hosting starts at an excellent discounted price of $2.95/month (70% off)
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Free custom email
  • Automatic software updates
  • All in all, Bluehost is a reliable web hosting service that gives you excellent value for your money.

Web Hosting starts at $2.95/month. You can also choose other hosting plans based on your preferences below. The basic plan works great for most beginners.

BlueHost Hosting Plans
BlueHost Hosting Plans

Step 4: Pick a Domain Name (Your Blog Name)

Your domain name is your online identity. It’s how people find you on the web, and it says a lot about who you are and what you do. So when it comes to picking a domain name, there’s a lot to consider.

First, you need to make sure that your domain name is relevant to your brand or business. It should be something that people will remember and be able to easily find when they’re looking for you online. But it also needs to be unique – after all, you want people to remember YOU, not somebody else.

–It’s possible that it’ll be your name. For example, JoLarsen.com is a personal blog about me and my work.

– If you want to market arts and crafts, something like CraftyCathy.com would work well.

– You can use MakeMoneyNow.com, etc. if you’re blogging about how to generate money.

Once you’ve settled on a domain name, the next step is to choose a top-level domain (TLD) extension. The most common TLDs are .com, .net, and .org, but there are now hundreds of options to choose from.

When picking a TLD, think about what kind of website you’re building – a .com might work well for a personal blog, but a .net might be more appropriate for a technical website.

How to Register a Domain Name

Once you’ve decided on your domain name and TLD, the next step is to register your domain with a reputable registrar. This will ensure that nobody else can use your domain name and that your website is always available.

Not all blog (domain) names are available. If you use Bluehost as your hosting, you may search to see whether the name is still available. For a year, they provide you with free domain names.

If you already own a domain name with another provider, you can simply enter it during the sign-up process.

The domain registrar I use is NameCheap.com and I recommend them. I used to use GoDaddy and I had many issues with poor support and misleading billing. Since I switched to NameCheap.com I have been much more satisfied.

Registering a domain name with NameCheap.com

Registering a domain name with NameCheap.com is quick and easy, and there are several different options to choose from. The first step is to enter the desired domain name into the search bar on the homepage.

Once you’ve found an available domain, you can select it and proceed to the checkout page. On the checkout page, you’ll be asked to choose your preferred registrar (NameCheap or another provider), as well as your preferred top-level domain (TLD).

You’ll also have the option to add extra features like privacy protection or email forwarding. Aside from “Domain Privacy Protection,” I usually skip all the other add-ons. If you think you need them at a later date, you can always get them then.

After you’ve entered all the required information, you can complete your purchase and start using your new domain!

Point your Domain to your Web Hosting

If you’ve just registered a domain name and are ready to set up your WordPress blog, you’ll need to point the domain to your web host. This process can seem a bit daunting at first, but it’s actually quite simple. Here’s a step-by-step guide to pointing your domain from your registrar to your web host:

1. Log in to your registrar account.

2. Locate the DNS management tools. This is usually under the “Domain” or “Nameserver” section.

3. Find the field for changing the nameservers. This will likely be labeled as “NS1” and “NS2”.

4. Enter the nameservers for your web host. These will be provided by your web host (usually in the welcome email).

5. Save your changes.

6. That’s it! Your domain should now be pointed to your web host and you can begin building your website.

Step 5: Choose a WordPress Theme

So now you have a host and a domain name. I will assume you took my advice and are using WordPress and have activated on your hosting plan.

Your next step will be to choose a blog theme. A Wordress or blog theme is basically a pre-designed template that you can use to style your blog.

There are thousands of themes available, both free and premium. For most people, I recommend choosing a premium theme. Premium themes usually cost around $60, but they offer a lot more features and options than free themes.

They’re also more reliable and tend to be better supported by the theme developers.

When choosing a theme, you should make sure that it’s compatible with the WordPress version you’re using. You can check this by looking at the “Minimum Software Requirements” section on the theme’s page.

You should also make sure that the theme is responsive, meaning it will look good on both desktop and mobile devices.

Finally, you should make sure that the theme comes from a reputable source. There are many theme developers who create themes that are full of coding errors and security vulnerabilities.

I recommend sticking with themes from well-known developers like StudioPress, Elegant Themes, or Themeforest. These developers create high-quality themes that are well supported and updated on a regular basis.

If you’re using Bluehost, you can browse through their theme gallery and install a theme with just a few clicks.

If you’re not using Bluehost, you can still find plenty of themes on the WordPress.org website or from third-party developers.

Step 6: Install WordPress Plugins

Plugins are basically small pieces of software that add extra features or functionality to your website. There are plugins for just about everything, from social media integration to contact forms to security.

For most people, I recommend installing the following plugins:

contact form 7- allows you to create contact forms

jetpack- adds social media, security, and other features

yoast seo- helps you with search engine optimization – optimize your website for the people searching your topic to find your website

wp super cache- speeds up your website by caching your pages

While there are many great plugins available, you should be careful about installing too many. Each plugin adds extra code to your website, which can slow down your site.

I recommend only installing the plugins that you absolutely need. You can always add more later if you find that you need them.

Where to find plugins in WordPress
Where to find plugins in WordPress

Step 7: Write Your First Blog Post

Now it’s time to start writing content – your first post – for your money making blog! I recommend starting with a list post, as these tend to be the most popular and easiest to write.

To get started with your first blog post, simply log in to your WordPress dashboard and click on the “Add New” link under the “Posts” section.

You’ll be taken to a page where you can enter the title and body of your post.

When writing your blog post, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

Make sure your post is at least 600 word long. This may seem like a lot, but longer posts tend to perform better on internet searches.

Make sure your blog post is well-written and free of grammar and spelling errors.

Include 1-2 images in your blog post. People are more likely to share and link to posts that contain images.

Use short paragraphs and subheadings.

Make sure your blog post is optimized for people searching online. You can do this by using keywords throughout your post and adding a keyword-rich title.

Do keyword research to find the best keywords to target. You can use a free tool like Google Keyword Planner to find keywords that are relevant to your topic and have a good amount of monthly searches.

If you’re not sure how to optimize your post, you can use the Yoast SEO plugin I mentioned earlier. It will give you a checklist of things to do to make sure your post is optimized.

Once you’re done writing your post, simply click the “Publish” button and your post will go live on your blog! Your first step to learning how to start a blog and making money. Rinse and repeat for every new post to your blog to keep growing your content.

Step 8: Promote Your Blog

Now that you’ve written your first blog post, it’s time to start promoting your own blog and make sure people see your blog online. There are a number of ways to do this, but the most effective way is to use social media.

Start by sharing your new post on all of your social media accounts. You should also share your new blog posts on social media groups and forums related to your topic.

Social Media

When promoting your blog on social media, it’s important to post high-quality content that will interest your target audience. Simply sharing a link to your latest blog post is not enough. You need to grab people’s attention and make them want to click through to your blog.

One way to do this is to share an interesting quote or statistic from your blog post, along with a link. You can also share a relevant image or video along with your link.

Expert Tip: Many bloggers focus on Facebook, Twitter, TicTok and Instagram but don’t forget about Pinterest. Pinterest is actually more of a search engine than social platform.

Pinterest is a great way to drive traffic to your blog, especially if you write about topics like food, fashion, or DIY. Pins that are popular on Pinterest tend to rank high in Google search, so it’s worth creating pins for your posts. If you are going to invest your time promoting your blog on Pinterest, I would highly recommend Tailwind to automate the most difficult parts of your social media marketing so you can grow smarter and faster.

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Link Building

Link building is the process of getting other websites to link to your blog. This is important because the more links you have pointing to your site, the higher your site will rank on Google.

One way to get links is to reach out to other bloggers in your niche and ask them to link to your blog. You can also leave comments on other blogs with a link back to your site. Just make sure you’re leaving valuable comments that add to the conversation.

Another way to get links is to create infographics and other types of content that other people will want to link to. You can also submit your blog to directories and other websites that list blogs in your niche.

Guest Posting

Guest posting is a great way to get exposure for your blog and to build links back to your site. When guest posting, you’ll write an article for another blog in your niche. This article will include a link back to your own blog.

Not only will this help you get exposure to a new audience, but it will also help you improve your search engine ranking. This is because when other websites link to your site, it’s seen as a vote of confidence by the the searches online.

To find guest posting opportunities, simply Google “[Your Niche] + guest post.” For example, if you’re in the fitness niche, you would search for “fitness guest post.”

Submitting to Directories and Search Engines

In order to get your blog indexed by the search engines, you’ll need to submit it to directories and search engines. The easiest way to do this is to submit your blog’s RSS feed.

You can find your RSS feed by going to your blog’s homepage and adding “/feed” to the end of the URL. For example, if your blog’s URL is “example.com”, your RSS feed would be “example.com/feed”.

Once you have your RSS feed, you can submit it to directories and search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo.

Email Newsletters

Email newsletters are a great way to keep people coming back to your blog. You can use an email service such as MailChimp or Aweber to send out regular newsletters to your subscribers.

In your newsletter, be sure to include links to your latest blog posts. You can also include other content such as exclusive deals and discounts, or even freebies such as eBooks or templates.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to promoting your blog and driving traffic to your site. Just remember to focus on quality content and to be consistent with your promotion efforts.

Make Money With Your Blog
Make Money With Your Blog

Step 9: Make Money Blogging

If you’re creating a blog to make money, this part deals with some of the methods for making money through your site. It’s no secret that many bloggers make thousands of dollars each month from their blogs.

There are a number of ways to generate inclome. The most common way is to sell advertising space on your blog. You can do this through Google Adsense or by working with private advertisers.

1. Sell Your Product and Services

Many individuals create a blog or website in order to sell particular items or services. If you want people to hire you for your talents, such as photography, writing, graphic design work, virtual assistance, social media consulting, online courses and so on., then start a blog/website.

You can also use the blog to promote affiliate items, starting an eCommerce store to sell various things (physical or digital, including internet courses, eBooks, printables, and software), and utilize it as part of your SEO or visitor engagement plan.

2. Affiliate Marketing

You can also generate income by joining affiliate programs. This is where you promote other people’s products on your blog and earn a commission for each sale that you generate.

This is what most bloggers rely on to generate money…lots of money…to make six-figure salaries every month of the year. So if you came here to learn how to start a blog and make money, this is what you will want to do for sure.

Option #2 is similar to option #1, except you’re assisting someone else (another firm or blogger) sell their items and collecting a commission for your referral.

Simply advertise their helpful items in your blog postings.

Some of the most well-known affiliate networks to make income blogging are:

3. Advertising

One of the simplest methods to making money from your blog and generate passive income is to allow advertisements (ads) on your blog. When visitors come to your site, they see these ads in addition to your other material.

Depending on your ad network, you may make a few bucks from these display views as well as when people click on them.

The Google Adsense ad network is the most popular choice for inexperienced bloggers. You may join up with MediaVine and AdThrive once your blog has some traction and you’re receiving more page views.

4. Sponsored Posts

Companies may contact you to have a review of their product or service posted on your blog. They will usually charge a set fee for this.. They may also offer to give you a sample of the product, or they might do both (i.e., pay you in cash and provide you with a sample of their goods).

The greater your clout, the more money you may charge for sponsored articles.

There are several more ways to profit from your blog. In fact, once your blog is established and has a following, you will receive numerous emails each day from advertisers wanting a review of their company, to place advertisements on your site, or for a link.

No matter what monetization strategy you choose, make sure you’re providing value to your audience. This is the best way to ensure that people will keep coming back to your blog and that you’ll be able to make money from it.

The 9-steps you need to take to how to start a blog and make some extra money:

So there you have it! These are the 9 steps you need to take to start a blog and generate money in 2022. If you follow these steps, you’ll be well on your way to becoming one of those successful bloggers.

I hope you’ve found this information helpful and that you take the plunge to start your very own blog. It can be an extremely rewarding experience, not to mention a great way to share your thoughts, ideas, and expertise with the world. 

Frequently Asked Questions About How to Start a Blog

How much money can I make from my blog?

The amount of money you can make from your blog depends on a number of factors, including your niche, the quality of your content, and the monetization strategies you use.

Do I need to be an expert in a certain topic to start a blog?

No, you don’t need to be an expert in a certain topic to start a blog. However, it may help you attract more readers if you write about something you’re passionate about or have a lot of knowledge about.

How much time does it take to make money from blogging?

The amount of time it takes to make money from blogging depends on a number of factors, including the monetization strategies you use and the amount of traffic your blog receives.

Generally speaking, it takes a significant amount of time and effort to start making money from a blog.

Where can I get help to start a blog and designing my blog?

With the right theme, designing your blog is pretty easy. For example, many people use Elegant Themes and they provide tons of already fully-designed layouts with their themes that can simply be installed with one click!

But if you need assistance with anything beyond that, such as logo design, blog article writing, web development, and so on, you can hire freelancers on sites like Upwork, Fiverr, 99Designs or Freelancer to assist you.

Jo Larsen

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