How to Start a Blog? This 5 word question every new blogger wants to learn. They perhaps think that how to create a blog is so simple to answer as to question. They are wrong. It needs a step by step guide to start blogging. This beginner’s guide is in series of my key article on earning online money in Pakistan, 8 Great Ways to Earn Online Money. I have been affiliated with making websites and writing contents for blogs for past 5 years. When I started AskAmin, I decided to share my knowledge on this platform. There is no doubt in that on internet there are hundreds of blogs and websites teaching on how to create a website or blog and ways to write blog contents. Some of the blogs are worth mentions. Like this Pakistani Blog http://www.wpbeginner.com/ and http://www.theblogstarter.com/ . So what is the reason behind to write myself on this topic? The answer is simple, every blogger writes guide by using his own experiences, observation and knowledge, here I am using mine. One thing more, this is a basic guide for only those who wants to kick start blogging and plans to earn money from blogging in future. Note again that this is not an absolute authority guide on blogging but it is based on my understanding and recommendations of blogging.
How to Start a Blog
Before going further on how to make a website or blog, let me introduce you to blogs. Blog is the combination of Web Logs, where individuals and business share their thoughts, experiences, knowledge, and news in the form of Text Articles, Picture Gallery or Videos. Since the beginning of blogs, it gets popularity in tremendous amount. The internet flux becomes denser with the emergence of blogging. It was the time that I can freely say, to enter in the new generation of internet.
Before you further read, I would strongly recommend having a look in to my past article 30 Tips to Start an Online Shopping Store to get some real quick idea before we further go deeper. Now if you have already read that article, let’s start now.
Why Do You Want To Blog?
Ask yourself that why do you need to start your own blogs. Blogging is easy but for those who are in this industry for years. Carrying a good blog is not piece of cake for everyone. It needs dedication, focus and lots of hard work. So without any goal, you would not become sincere to your work. There may be some strong motivation behind your blogging project.
- You want to earn money online with blogging
- You want to polish your content writing skills
- You perhaps want to share your opinions or knowledge
- You want to promote some products
Whatever the reason is you should know it from the day one.
What Do You Blog About?
It is perhaps the most important step before you jump into the sea. You have to decide your niche. On what category you are good in writing. This is important to understand that if you are going to write blogs as a hobby or as your opinion logs, its fine. But if you are going to monetize your blog, niche is the backbone. Your niche will decide your competition and traffic. Think about your strong zones. What knowledge you have to share with the world. Below are the most popular blog niches.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Content Marketing
- Health and Fitness
- Money and Business
- Do It Your Self
- Online Shopping
Choose the category you are passionate about. Blog something you really know about.
Once you have decided your niche, it’s time to have a look into the market. You should know before, is your niche is worth monetize. You would might have a good looking blog, you might would have the great contents to share but what if there is no one interested to listen. For beginners, monetizing is to make money from your blog. You should know before your competitors too.
Let’s say you have decided to start Fitness Blog. Open google.com and search for fitness. You will see your competitors. Now create an excel sheet and copy first 10 websites like mensfitness.com as your competitors for future use.
Now open Goolge AdWords and go to Keyword Planner Tools. Write Your Niche and you will see the following results. Note millions of people search for fitness and it indicates that you have chosen something that people are looking for on internet. In future, I will write a separate post on How to Use Google AdWords for Your Blogs.
Where to Start
Blogs can be started in two ways.
Self Hosted Blogs: Like www.Yoursite.com
- I would say, self hosted blog is your best bet. There are many reasons for this.
- It shows that you are serious about your blog
- It gives trust to your site visitors
- It becomes your brand name
- It will be free from third party ads
- Total control and Freedom on your blog
- Helps in SEO
Register a Domain and Hosting
Congratulation, you have decided to go for self hosted blog. Next step is to register a Domain Name (Website Address) for your blog. You have to pay annually for your Domain Name, don’t worry they are cheap. Domain Name cannot be changed once register, so you have to take care of every aspect of it because once registered, you have to carry that forever. It would be your brand name, so be careful. I am sharing below some tips to register domain name.
Your Domain Name Should Be:
- Dot Com TLD (Top Level Domain); See what other TLDs can be registered?
For more information, you can read my article, How to Register a Domain Name. Webhosting also plays an important role. You should consider a good and reliable Host for your website. I will discuss this topic in another post but for now ask your webhost for C Panel Hosting. I would also suggest you to register your Domain Name and Hosting from Hostgator or Godaddy. If you are looking for Web Hosting Companies in Pakistan, go for Easy HostMan.
Choose a Blogging Platform
Do not bother to develop your website. Time has gone when people hires developers for coding their blogs. As a start up, you can set yourself your own blog right away with little effort. Thanks to ready to use blogging platforms. There are dozens of Content Management Systems for blogging available in the market for free. The most popular are WordPress and Joomla. WordPress Vs Joomla is still a hot debate on internet. WordPress has 55% market shares where as Joomla has a fastest growth. Both have merits and demerits. But for beginners, I would strongly recommend WordPress for so many reasons.
Installing Your Blog
Installing WordPress to your site is easy. It would take only 5 minutes. Just follow these steps.
- Go to WordPress.org and download the latest version of WordPress.
- Go to your C Panel, yourFitnessSite.com/cpnel and login with the credentials provided by your Web Host.
- Look for MySql Database Wizard. Create a new database. It is easy; wizard will guide you step by step.
- Look for File manager and go to your root folder or www folder.
- Click Upload on the top toolbar.
- Browse your computer and upload WordPress Package in that folder.
- After uploading, right Click and Extract the package in the same folder.
- Now open a separate tab in your browser and open your website; YourFitnessWebsite.com . You will see that WordPress Installation will run automatically. Just do what the wizard ask you to do.
That’s all, now you have your own blog. For more step by step details. Please visit this WordPress Blog http://www.wpbeginner.com/how-to-install-wordpress/ . You can also ask your web host to setup your WordPress Blog for you.
WordPress comes with some default themes. There are hundreds of free WordPress Themes available in the market. They are only one click away. I would recommend that do not go for free online themes especially if you want to be a serious Blogger. Go for Premium Paid Themes with copyrights. There are so many benefits for using premium themes.
- The code is neat and clean
- No Spyware, Malware
- More SEO Friendly
- Build Brand Trust
- Amazing Looking Designs
- Better User Experience
There are numerous theme websites which offering Premium WordPress Templates. Theme Forest and Mojo-Theme are among good names. Remember, before purchasing any theme; make sure to read detailed description of the theme. It is better to read user comments and FAQs before purchase. Make Sure your theme reflects with your desired color combination. Moreover, buy only responsive designs. Responsive designs are those themes that are adjustable to different type of devices like Desktops, Tablets, and Mobiles etc.
Setting Up Your Blog
After you purchase your theme, it is time to set your blog up. Below are some must haves before launching your blog.
Make a logo for your blog: Logos are necessary because it reflects your brand. You can either use text based logo or image base, your logo must be original and unique. Do not try to copy someone else. You can take inspiration but not copy at all.
Write About Us Page: There are 3 main reasons why you should right killer About Us Page.
- Users are intelligent now a days, they used to see About Us page to find the trust factor.
- About us page represents your blog as preface of any book.
- It is really important for SEO and Google Ad Sense.
Create Contact Us Page: A detailed contact us page can do the miracle. How advertisers, sponsors and your visitors contact you, via your contact page. Write at least 2 Email Ids, Phone Number, Location, Skype Id and your social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
Structure Your Blog: People love those pages which are clearly structured. It means you have to categories your data and integrate a main menu. For example, for your fitness blog, your menu items be like the below.
- Health & Diet
- Men’s Fitness
- Women’s Fitness
- About Us
- Contact Us
One thing you have to remember here that I am just giving you basic idea to kick starts your blog. Otherwise, there are tons of other parameters, things which every blogger should care of. Those tips I will give you in advance stages.
Add a Comments Section: People love to interact these days. So they comment right away on the potential blog post. Interact with your fans by adding a comment section in each blog post. Most popular comment systems are Commentluv and Disqus.
Add a Search box: Adding search box at the top of your blog gives facility to your users to search your old blog post. Integrate search option right from the day one.
Write Content for Your Blog:
It is time to show the world what you are good at. Blog writing is an art. You be perfect from day one. It takes time to be a good blogger. You would not write your first blog post as a master piece. But do not worry, by the time you will be the master. Blog post is perhaps the most important parameter of any blog. It is your product. People come to your blog just to read your content. In short content is the king.
- Always write original, unique and meaningful content
- Do not ever try to duplicate content, it will be a suicide
- Write posts regularly with consistency
- Try to write longer posts, nearly 1500 t0 2000 Words
- Do not write post below 500 Words
- Use Images, pictures
- Use copy righted images only
- Provide Social share Buttons at the bottom of Your every Post
I will cover regarding blog post tips in some other day. Make sure do not launch your blog before having at least 5 detailed articles. Once you have 5 or 6 articles, publish only three of them and schedule the remaining.
Launch Your Blog:
You have already completed your pre requisites. What are you waiting for now. Launch your blog with a bang. Share your new blog with friends, Email your contacts about your blog and ask your friends and family to spread your blogs to their circles. Make profile pages of your blog on all leading social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram and Linkedin.
There are so many things which I will cover later including details about Web Hosting, Writing a Blog Post, Setting Your Home Page, Content Marketing, SEO and Link Building etc. Please feel free to contact me, we love your feedback.