How to Start Blogging and Making Money
Blogging is a free platform for anyone from a beginner to an expert level to write about whatever they feel like, provide information, promote business, and create a brand through blogging. Here are a few tips to get started about how to start blogging and making money in India while you sit in the comfort of your home.
How to create a blog
Before starting a blog, you must know that you don’t have to be a professional or an experienced writer to start blogging. The users read blogs to get information on what they are looking for, product updates, business information, entertainment, and learn something. There are many blogging platforms like, WordPress and Blogger that provide a free platform for the users to blog. Here are a few steps you can follow to create a free blog.
Choose a blog name that is not taken and is available for you to use. You can choose any name that is catchy and test it in the domain name search to check if the name that you have chosen for your blog is available or not. Here are a few suggestions on how to pick a blog name.
A blog name is essential as it shows what niche your blog is about.
You must brainstorm ideas to incorporate the niche in your blog name and make sure it is unique.
You can choose tools like the namegenerator.com, where you can punch in the keywords of the niche in which you want to write and choose the list of suggested names.
Take a look at the blog names in the niche that you want to write.
Choose the name based on your target audiences, such as generic audience or specific audience.
For instance, if you want to have a blog in fitness, you can incorporate words such as fitness, health, and its synonyms to create a blog name.
Use the keywords in the niche which you want to blog so that the blog name reflects the tone and niche of your blog.
For a personal blog, you can choose any name you want as it is a personal choice and there is no hard-and-fast rule for choosing the name of a personal blog.
Pick a name that points that tone of the blog. For instance, if the tone of your blog is for a professional audience, choose a professional word.
If the target audience is all age groups, you can choose an informal word that reflects the theme and the tone of your blog.
You can add relevant local words to the blog name if your target audience is a local audience.
Register the blog and get a hosting account. A web hosting is a service where you get ample storage space on the web servers to host your website. Here are the reasons why you need a hosting account:
It is essential to get a hosting account as it comes with many inbuilt features such as themes, layout, security, security certificates, tools, plugins, and easy install options that help you create a professional website without any technical experience.
A hosting account has an inbuilt feature to install content management systems like WordPress, Joomla, Magneto, etc.
Every content management system is used for a different purpose.
For instance, WordPress is used for blogging, Magneto is used for building e-commerce websites.
To install WordPress, login to your hosting account and click on the WordPress installer and follow the steps given.
If your hosting account does not provide an in-built WordPress plugin, here are the steps to install WordPress in your hosting account.
to your local computer from the link provided
Upload the WordPress package that you downloaded to your hosting account
Login to the CPanel of your hosting account
Click on the MySQL Database section to create a Database user and password for your WordPress blog login
Give it all the privileges so you can log in as an admin user and make changes as and when you need
Now configure Wp-config.php that tells the WordPress which database to point to, to get user information
Go to File Manager and expand Public_Html when you click on wp-config-sample.php
Rename this file to wp-config.php
Edit the code by clicking the code-edit to replace the database name.
Replace the database name and the password with the name that you created while creating the database in the MySQL Database section in the previous steps
Save all the changes
Replace the example.com(default name) with the domain name you have chosen
Run the WordPress installation
Punch in details such as Site name, username, password, email address, and click Install now to run the installation
When you get the message, “WordPress has been installed”, you can log in to the domain name with theusernamee and password and start blogging
Everytime you can click on the domain name, punch in the username and password and update, and modify any feature you want
This completes the procedure of WordPress installation on the hosting website in which you have an account. Next steps are:
Choose a template and a free theme to customize your blog
Pick a niche and start writing the blog posts
Use pictures and mixed media to create quality content
You can use WordPress plugins and widgets to enhance the visual appeal of your blog
Promote your blog on various social media platforms and web directories
Monetize your blog choosing an program
Follow guidelines to avoid penalty through monetization. Check regularly to know about the new rules for content creation and marketing. These algorithm updates also provide insights on new as well as obsolete rules for content creation and the use of SEO techniques. For instance, the use of too many keywords in your blog could get you blacklisted, which was once a SEO technique to increase a page rank. There are many such rules provided in these algorithm which you must keep up with if you want to monetize your website.
List of free blogging platforms
● WordPress- free blogging platform where you can post text, images, videos, and create blogs in any niche. Has a dashboard and a user-friendly content management system. Suitable for intermediate and professional bloggers
● Blogger- one of the oldest blogging platform that is free. Stitable for beginners
● FreeVlog- Free video blogging website that is for free to register and start video blogging
● Hubpages- is a blogging community where you can register for free and provide informative articles. If they are selected you earn revenue from them through the website
How to Pick a Blog Niche
Explore your passions, interests, and expertise. Think of what you can give the audience that keeps them glued to your blog. You can blog about travel, cooking, books, fashion, arts and crafts, movies, sports, and just about anything that interests you. You can also start a personal blog and share your life experiences, random things, and just about anything that crosses your mind if you do not want to stick to a niche. Successful bloggers usually pick a niche and build an authority through blogging in the niche they choose to blog about.
Follow Google Webmaster Guidelines for creating blog posts
No matter what niche you choose, if you are planning to monetize your blog, you have to follow the Google algorithm updates and the Google Webmaster guidelines to avoid penalties. Keep your content fresh and original. Create long articles, at least 1200-1500 word articles and use keywords as per the webmaster guidelines for creating content. Creating long article creates authenticity and authority ina niche in which you write articles. Do a keyword search for every post and use SEO techniques such as, adding backlinks, using tags, keywords based on density, and keeping the posts error free. Check for grammar and readability as well with tools like grammarly and smallseotools, that check for grammar as well as plagiarism. Write in simple language so that users from any age group can read your blog posts. You must create at least 20 blog posts before you start monetizing your blog.
How to monetize your blog without a website
There is a minute difference between a blog and a website. A blog is also a website. A website has additional features and many formatting options compared to a blog. If you do not have a website with a .com or a .net extension, for instance, you can sign up and register for a blog and monetize it as well.
Sign up for Google Adsense programs and display the ads on your website by embedding the code snippet within the layout of your blog. When you choose a blog hosting account such the Bluehost, Godaddy, etc, it comes with additional features for posting ads and adds layers of security to prevent spam from tanking the page rank of your site. Caching and content delivery networks(CDN) are caching servers that help your website load faster in any geographic location regardless of where your website is primarily hosted. A CDN has cloud hosting and distributed servers which duplicate your website and display it as it is originally whenever a request is made from any corner of the world. Here are a few ways to monetize a blog with or without a website.
● Affiliate marketing-get commission for selling other people’s products on your blog.
● Adsense is not the only way to monetize your blog
● If your blog has good traffic, create a separate space for advertisers and get to direct advertising. You can use plugins to manage these ads. You can join various forums to find advertisers who want to directly advertise on your blog, cutting down the use of third-party ads.
● Choose a product related to your niche and write sponsored posts and reviews for those products.
● Sell your own product or service on your blog by adding a payment gateway. The setup is easy and is one of the easiest ways to monetize your blog. For instance, the is a blog that sells their own products and also has a section for an online magazine.
● You can write and sell Ebooks, online courses, sell business services, provide consultation, and do more in the selling arena on your blog
● You can publish content on various paid platforms such as LinkedIn, Tumblr, Medium, Skillshare, and many similar platforms available online for free
● You can also set up your blog to accept donations online
How long does it take to start earning through blogging
Bloggers who are consisting at creating and publishing quality content choosing blog topics that are trending can start making money within 3-6 months. To be able to make money full-time, you need to continually work on your blog for 1-2 years. There are various income streams that can come through monetizing your blog. You can choose these streams through affiliate marketing, selling products and services on your blog, selling advertising space, and selling physical products. It is up to you to choose the monetizing platform and be consistent in creating top-notch content in your niche that provides useful information that the users are looking for.
Ways to generate traffic for your blog
You need a good amount of traffic coming to be able to start earning money from your blog. Apart from creating plagiarism-free and error-free content that is interesting and informative, you need to focus on the SEO, layout, and analytics part. Choose programs such as Google Analytics that provide you insights on various parts of your page and let you know which posts are doing well and which aren’t. These insights help you optimize your content, layout, and make your blog responsive. You can make money from your blog by following these tips to start with. These are the ways you can generate traffic and reduce bounce rates.
● Choose a responsive layout that loads easily on a desktop, mobile, and other devices.
● Bounce rates are reduced when your blog is mobile-friendly
● More than 50% of the users check blogs online and making your website mobile responsive generates more traffic
● Comment on other people’s blogs and share your blog links in the comment
● When you start a blog, focus on the theme that is clean and easy to read
● Choose a color palette and background colors that are easy on the eyes
● Create lists, subheadings, tell a story, do public speaking, create Vlogs, and use mixed media to make your blog visible online and offline
● SEO is essential to generate traffic such as, meta description, title, H1, H2 tags, subheadings, and lists.
● Get indexed and make your blogs available for being searched. Sign up for Google Webmaster Guidelines and follow the procedure to index your site for Google Search. Doing this makes Google crawl into your web pages and display those links in relevant search results.
● Include sitemaps, robot.txt file to get indexed in the online searches. A sitemap is an organized scheme of web links on your website that makes it easier for the user to navigate to any section of your website through the sitemaps.
● Choose the right keywords, and do not make your posts spammy. Use keyword search tools such as MoZ keyword explorer, SEMrush, Wordstream-Hyperlink all the tools please, etc to pick the right keyword for your post/article.
● Create catchy headlines. For instance, “10 Best Things To Look For In An Apple Store,” is a good example of a catchy headline that uses numbers, and are descriptive enough for the user to understand what the post is going to be about.
● Build an email list and choose email marketing for promoting your blog effectively. May tools such as MailChimp, ConvertKit, etc are available online that make email marketing campaigns a breeze to set up.
Tips to write quality content
Many free online tools are available that provide you with insights about the errors and the performance of your blogs. Choose SEO and readability tools that score your content and provide you with insights into the quality of your content. Use these insights and analytics to keep your content optimized and generates a better user experience.
Create content that keeps the users engaged. Create polls, ratings, contact forms, and use interesting widgets that let the users participate in your posts. Analyse the titles of your posts for titles, and create catchy subheadings and heading focusing on the length of the characters you use creating them.
Write short paragraphs in each post and provide well-researched content for your blogs. Use shock value, humor, and expressions that create an emotional response from the users. Choose a good format for writing and create killer content that the users love to share.
Schedule the timing of the post as per the demographics and the targeted audience. This helps reach the post to a wider audience within the timeline of your chosen demographics.
Be an influencer on Social Media
Analyse what people love on various social media platforms and create posts in those themes and topics for your niche. You are likely to get shares for your posts if you use social media to keep the users engaged. Social media platforms are a potent tool that comes for free and are useful in directing traffic to your website. You can make users fall in love with your content if you post content that they want to read.
Be prompt in answering any queries and always keep the tone of the language that you use bright and funny. Users love humor. Publish witty posts and choose content that adds value to the post and has something for the users to gain from.
As you garner traffic and do so consistently, you can choose paid campaigns on social media platforms such as Facebook and gain a wider reach for your content choosing various options in the demographics such as age, gender, ethnicity, region, and country.
Offer some freebies
Once you see that your traffic is increased, offer discounts or freebies to the users in the form of gift cards or prizes for participating in the contests. Create a quiz, polls, and contests to keep the users engaged and offer them free gifts.
Set up a Content Delivery Network(CDN)
To make the loading of your web pages faster in any corner of the world, signup with a CDN. This makes your global pages get cached locally in any location in the world and load your web page faster. Fast page load times reduce the bounce rates and create a better user experience letting the users stay on your page longer. If you have web servers in the U.S, the CDN lets your web page load quickly in any continent and country apart from the U.S. This is one of the biggest advantages of setting up a CDN for your blog. When you use a CDN for your blog or website, the users no more have to wait longer for your pages to load on to their screens and devices.
Top bloggers in India
Amit Agarwal owns the Labnol.org, a tech website that makes “Rs 43 Lacs a month. He is an IIT graduate who started this blog in 2004 and has been earning full time through his website through Adsense, paid advertising, and affiliate links.
Amit Bhawani started his blog on tech and gadgets in 2007. His blog Amitbhawani.com earns “Rs 17 lacs a month through Adsense and ad networks.
Srinivas Tamada makes Rs 2.8 Lacs-Rs 5 Lacs a month from 9Lessons.info. He earns through Adsense, direct ads, and affiliates.
Be creative in promoting your blog
Use guerilla marketing techniques and bring it online to generate curiosity about your blog. Create awareness and use innovative techniques to beckon the attention of users to your blog. You need to think out of the box and create a personal brand and promote your blog online as well as offline. Use blog links in your email signature, and every social media profile. Create profiles on social platforms and link to one another.
Give webinars, create videos, do the talking in every opportunity possible online and offline and create interest in the content of your blog. Be more human in your promotion of the blog instead of being obnoxious about promoting your blog.
Wrapping it up
Blogging gives you independence in creating a brand and selling the products that you love and care about. With this sense of independence, you can create content with social responsibility that makes your blog stand out. SEO and digital marketing is the backbone of generating leads and traffic to your blog. Online tools and the free material is available for learning the tools and techniques of SEO and monetizing your blog. Remember, you don’t have to be a professional writer to create a blog. You only need an idea to get started in any niche or share a personal experience. Blogging is fun and it lets you make money and live the life that you dream about when you use these tips to get started and blog consistently.