How to start a blog and make money – Part I

Welcome to the first part of how to start a blog and make money. With this article, you will know that blogging is not just a platform to engage with your audience but also a source of making money. The first blog aims to inform you about starting with a blog quickly whereas the second blog will tell you how you can earn money as a blogger by becoming an affiliate. So, without further adieu, lets us know how you can go about it.

In the early days, blogging catered to an audience looking for casual reading. It was a platform where artists, freelancers and curators would demonstrate their skills to reach their audiences online. Over time, with the tremendous reach and power demonstrated by this medium, businesses, enterprises and professionals took to blogging to inform and influence their target audience as well.

Today, blogging has become a staple for many professionals wanting to showcase their domain expertise. So much so that these professionals have started blogging for money to open an extra revenue stream for themselves. This is because of the nature of benefits provided by blogs as a platform. Some of the benefits can be given as follows-

1. Blogging is a no-risk investment
2. You can expand your network as much as you can
3. It helps you build and position yourself as an expert in the field of your choice
4. You can create a unique identity and brand yourself

So how to start a blog right away?

Before you start a blog, recognize what your niche is. That is which category or field would you like to talk about. Allow us to explain. Let us say, your area of expertise is ‘Technology’. But, technology is a very vast topic. Within technology, which aspect would you like to cover? Start off by asking this question first- Is it computers? software? hardware? internet? or domains and web hosting? This level of detailing will allow you to narrow down to a niche so that you will get relevant visitors to your blog.

Now, to get started with a blog, you can take two routes. In the first route, you can essentially start with a blog by choosing a platform of your choice and then getting a free plan which will provide you a blog with a sub-domain i.e your blog will read as myblog.subdomain.com.

Whereas with the other route, you can select a domain and web hosting of your choice to build your own blog. Let us go step-by-step and understand how to go about it, shall we?

Step 1: Go to WordPress.com and select ‘Start a blog’ option.

Step 2: You will be redirected to a page that will ask you to choose a popular theme. Select one of those themes to go ahead.

Step 3: Choose a name for your blog. Also, while choosing a name, make sure you remember these pointers-
Ensure that the name will reflect the purpose of your blog.
Make sure that this name is easy to recall.

Step 4: Select the free plan to get running asap.

In case you do not want to choose the free plan which ends with .wordpress.com, you also have the option to choose a ‘premium plan’ if you want to. You can select a hosting plan from WordPress.com or even avail ResellerClub’s WordPress hosting plans which start at $2-$3. You can also choose a shared hosting package to get your blog up and running. After selecting a hosting plan, select a domain name for your blog and preferably choose a .COM domain for the blog. Also, make sure that the domain name is unique, easy to remember, and reflects your field or category.

Step 5: Put your credentials into the relevant fields and click ‘Continue’

Step 6: Once you are done with the credentials, you will be given an option to start directly or upgrade to a premium plan. To start blogging quickly click on ‘View my site’ to start editing and posting on the blog.

Step 7: Start editing the pages of your blog by adding images and content. You can also edit the current theme by choosing a different theme of your choice. Once you are satisfied with all the aspects, click publish and witness users coming on to your blog.

Benefits of taking this route:

1. Time to go online is drastically reduced.
2. You save on many costly resources.
3. You have total freedom and control over the blog

This was easy, right? But making money through blogs is much easier

People who take blogs seriously generally post on a regular basis. They know that they have a unique offering when it comes to content about a particular topic or a field. Since they are well versed or have deep knowledge with respect to a field, they leverage their skills to monetize through blogs as a medium. One of the most common methods adopted by bloggers is becoming ‘Affiliates.’

Affiliates start off by creating a blog to make money. As you have seen above, getting a blog for yourself does not really take much time. You can also join an Affiliate Program and create as well as publish more content on your blogs to monetize through the same.

Apart from this, becoming an affiliate holds many advantages for bloggers. Along with earning thought leadership in their industry, affiliates also-

a) Get monetary incentives- As an affiliate, you can earn money by using blogs as a platform to market brands or products. Affiliates help in influencing their audience by educating and informing them with respect to a product’s or a service’s benefits. They leverage their expertise and their value in the online space to earn money in return. In short, a blogger can have a good passive income by becoming an affiliate.

b) Flexible working schedule- Affiliates don’t need to have a fixed schedule when they want to earn money like most jobs do. As a blogger, you can write content and publish it according to your convenience and wait for users to read and buy the product you are advocating.

c) No marketing investment required- No affiliate has to make or create marketing collateral for the brand. This is given by brands or companies who tie up with the affiliate. This has allowed more bloggers to register as affiliates.

Conclusion

Blogging really has no end because as different fields, industries and categories keep evolving, so does the information that surrounds it. So, to put it in a nutshell, you will never age as a blogger. Like we mentioned above, if you have knowledge about a particular field, it can be leveraged. So, always treat your blog as a small business that will earn you some more money. There are lots of people today that are starting a blog to make money because they know they have the power to influence people and make the most out of their expertise. These individuals go the whole hog by integrating their blogs with social media channels to pull a large amount of traffic which helps them scale further.

In closing, we would like to add that if you have any doubts or queries regarding this article, feel free to leave a comment as feedback. Also, stay tuned in for the second part of ‘How to start a blog and make money’ where we talk about how you can become an affiliate and monetize through the blog by using various tactics.

Sagar Kulkarni

Sagar Kulkarni

Digital enthusiast and movie buff