This post may contain affiliate links. Disclosure here.
Follow these steps to start a lifestyle blog! Or any type of blog, really. The money-making comes later. & I’m still in that stage.
Everyone talks about a money making blog but no one really explains what to do first and how to get to the money-making.
I’ll be showing you how you can get your possible topic, domain and the platform I’m currently using. I mentioned lifestyle blog because it’s the one I have and I believe it shows tons of possibilities to (eventually) earn money. Blogging is changing my life and it’s helped me get my mind of the clutter. The goal? Replace my income with my blog and do what I love full-time; write.
Being completely honest, monetizing requires hard work. A lot of hours go into learning and executing and testing but I’ve got to admit it has been fun. But I’ve seen that it’s possible to earn money blogging ♥
By following the steps outlined below, you’ll be able to set your blog to success for money-making reasons, a creative outlet or freelance advertising.
1. Pick Your Blog Topics
This is something that you should think about it along the lines of: What do you love? What are you good at? What are you interested in? A Niche, it’s the “main topic” of the blog. In my case, lifestyle is broad and allows me to play with the topics as much as I want to.
Keep in mind that all the questions above are for the purpose of finding out what people want to read and help them solve problems. Imagine your audience is someone like you 2 – 3 years ago and would have loved a specific advice on a problem you were able to solve and can help make someone’s life easier.
Oddly enough, my favorite blogs are about gaming. Kotaku, IGN, and Steam.
However, I’ve come to read the following blogs. From lifestyle to money-making.
- Radical Transformation Project
- Life Is Messy And Brilliant
- Twenty Something Meltdown
- Katie Did What
- Lifestyle For Real Life
- Gathering Dreams
- Plaid Fuzz
These, as you’ll see, focus on solving people’s problems as well as sharing the personal touch of life. Which I love ♥
2. Think about a Domain Name (Website’s name)
Given, mine is not particularly catchy but it’s what I do. I live with my girls every day – every vacation plan has to accommodate all my pets and you, now that has a topic(s) to write about, pick a name to go along.
Advice that I’ve gathered, pick a name easy to remember, easy to spell and that relates to you and the topic you’ve picked.
Remember that once you’ve thought something up, you’ll need to check if the name is available. You can check the possibilities here:
BEFORE any rash decisions, let me tell you that Bluehost gives you a FREE domain for the first year as long as you buy 12 months’ worth of web hosting. I bought 3 years.
3. The Right Platform
Simply put: in a free platform you won’t generate money. If this is only a creative outlet without wanting to replace your income – BlogSpot and WordPress are amazing. I’ve used both and I can attest that I prefer BlogSpot for writing alone and WordPress for posts when images are involved.
IF, however, you want to earn money blogging at some point, WordPress.org all the way. Which means, self-hosted. It’s the most common platform out there hosting websites and that means they know their business. These are some of the best qualities:
- Easy to customize
- Great walkthroughs
- Amazing Free Themes (Paid too)
- Free plug-ins
- No yourdomain.wordpress.com
- A whole lot of resources if you get stuck
To name a few.
4. Snag the BEST Host
Given, I recommend Bluehost because it’s the one I use but I wouldn’t recommend something I wasn’t happy with. They have amazing support and it includes a FREE domain name for purchases of 12-month plans and above.
If that doesn’t get your attention, then how about:
- Best affordable prices for starters, just like me, when you have limited investing resources.
- It’s the #1 host recommended by WordPress.org
You can follow these steps when you feel you’re ready to start a self-hosted blog.
Once you click on a green button, you’ll be directed to a page where you’ll be prompt to select a type of plan and I’d recommend the basic plan. It’s all you need, really. You can upgrade later.
The longer the plan, the cheaper the price. Definitely, at least 12-month plan to avoid forgetting a month-to-month renewal and the free domain for the first 12 months but you have to pay upfront.
Once you click “select” on the basic plan, you may be prompted by the following screen.
If it’s a new domain or an already purchased domain, you’ll have to use the name you thought was the right on (step 2) and once you select the correction option, you’ll need to provide the payment information.
Personally, I got the 36-month basic plan when I started Life Between Dogs and it’s a slightly bigger investment upfront than a 12-month plan but I have to say, it’s the best way to get the best value for your money.
Out of all the option with extra $, the only one you REALLY need is “Domain Privacy Protection” for $0.99 per month which keeps your details hidden.
5. Install WordPress & Select a Theme
This is the last step but definitely, not the least important. Installing WordPress is done so simple by Bluehost (thank you very much) and free!
After the payment, and read+ the Terms of Service, Bluehost will now automatically install WordPress and all you have to do is choose a password.
Lastly, Bluehost will ask you to pick a theme.
Quick rundown: a theme defines how your blog will look and allows you to style and customize the WordPress site.
There are lots of amazing FREE themes, I’m currently using one ♥ and you can definitely change them and eventually, get a paid one if the free doesn’t do the trick anymore.
Start Building! Choose “Business” or “Personal” or “I don’t need help.”
&… CONGRATULATIONS! You already have a self-hosted WordPress Blog.
After all the clicking, take a break and a cup of tea or coffee.
Left to say is: Welcome to the blogosphere ♥
Ah! Before you go: To log in, use this URL for your dashboard yourblogname.com/wp-admin/ and go from there.
Questions, comments or anything on your mind, shoot me an email at email@example.com or leave a comment below.