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Why You Need a Blog and How to Start One
Do you want to have extra income from a side hustle, but still want flexibility to do things on your own time and from the comfort of your home or laptop? Do you dream of creating an income so you can leave your 9-5 and have more freedom? If so, starting a blog is a great avenue to pursue!
Now, I am not going to tell you that you will make tons of money as soon as you begin. It takes time just like anything else to put in the work and create good, quality content that solves a problem, provides education or entertainment. You also need to be consistent and constantly improve yourself, just as you would to be successful at anything.
Reasons You Need to Start a Blog to Make More Money
The reason why I love blogging is because there are relatively low startup costs. It also grants you great flexibility. You can blog from anywhere in the world and at anytime, which gives you a ton of flexibility in your schedule to build up this side hustle on your own time, versus someone else’s schedule.
I also love that there are SO many different ways that you can monetize your blog. The more options, the better! Also, there is no ceiling to what you can earn with blogging, which is a huge benefit as opposed to working for someone else where, most often, there is. Just a few of the ways that you can monetize your blog are through affiliate sales (promoting other people’s products that you already love, use and recommend for sale); marketing your own e-books, courses, products, services, etc; advertising; sponsorships and so many more!
You don’t have to use your blog to make the actual income, you can use your blog to promote and be the marketing behind whatever the product or service that you are selling is. So don’t think blogging is just for “bloggers.” I use my blog to market my financial coaching services, any income I make from affiliate marketing from my blog, I consider that “bonus” income and an additional income source, but not my main one. So don’t allow the thoughts of just “bloggers” blog, hold you back from making more money!
In my third month of blogging, I made $625 in income from my blog! Pretty good for my third month I would say!
Another reason why it is really beneficial to have a blog, if you have a website, having a blog that you regularly add blog posts to, it shows Google and other search engines, that your site is updated often. This really helps for your site to get seen on Google and other search engines. It makes you appear as a more credible expert in your chosen field according to Google and that is a really good thing, from a marketing aspect. The more traffic you can get from Google and other search engines to your website to show more people about your services or products, the more leads and potential clients/customers, that you will be reaching.
Writing blog posts show your potential customers a sneak peak of your knowledge and what it is like to work with you, which helps to build like, know and trust and to establish you as the expert. Before I work with anyone, I want to know that they have the knowledge and the experience and skills, to help me solve the problem that I want to be solved. I want to either be able to read their content they put out or listen to them on audio/video before I will make a purchase from them. Blogging helps with many areas of your business, that you wouldn’t normally wouldn’t have thought of!
Now I am going to get explain how you can set up a blog right now using WordPress.org
First off, I want to say that there is a difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com
WordPress.org is the website that you will want to create your blog on, I explain the differences between the two further down.
Step #1 – Decide What Your Blog Is Going to be About
The first step you need to make is deciding what you want your blog to be about. What types of things are you really passionate about? What do you know a lot about that you can educate or share with others?
Step #2 – Decide on a Name
You will want to choose what the name of your blog is going to be. You will want something that is meaningful to you and that you really love, so years down the line, it is something that still seems like you! Make sure it isn’t too hard to spell or remember.
Now I want to explain the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com because they look and sound similar but are VERY different and I want you to know the difference!
Step #3 – The Difference Between WordPress.org and WordPress.com
I had mentioned earlier that WordPress.com is NOT the platform that you will want to use but that WordPress.org is. I am explaining the difference because this is something I did not know when I started mine and I wish I would have!
WordPress.com is a free platform to use, which sounds amazing because it’s free, right?!? But most of the time when you can get something for free, you also have limitations and it won’t be the vessel that will get you to where you are going to (bringing in extra income in this case!). They may also run ads across your website and you don’t get to choose the kinds of ads they share. Doesn’t that just sound icky already?!?
You don’t want to start your blog on a free platform because your goal is to be able to monetize your blog. You don’t want to be using a free platform because that can cause many problems. If you want to monetize your blog you can run into many issues of trying to actually make money from the limitations of using a free platform. Also, you can quickly run out of space, which you are going to need for all your creative blog posts!
If you do choose WordPress.com, you can choose a paid account which will have fewer limitations. However, it will cost you WAY more to use this set up than it does to use WordPress.org. I am sharing this with you because, unfortunately, when I first started out, I didn’t know what I was doing and it cost me hundreds of dollars because I purchased the wrong one and in order to be able to overcome the limitations of WordPress.com, I had to keep paying more money. I want you to SAVE money and learn from my costly mistakes!
So now that leads us to WordPress.org, which is the system that I recommend you to use. It is a much more affordable option and you don’t have the limitations. It is also the #1 system used by bloggers and that says a lot right there. I would never want to be using the system that only a few people are using. Instead, I would want to use something that is tested and proven to work for many bloggers who are making money. Using WordPress.org is more affordable because you just pay for your own hosting separately (instead of all together). I can assure you it is much more reasonable (and starting out, keeping initial costs as low as you can is what you are wanting to do!) and it is simple to use Bluehost to host your site, which I will explain about below.
Step #4 – Before You Buy a Domain Name, Read This First
Your blog needs to be “hosted” somewhere on the internet, it is the place that your blog is going to “live.”
I recommend using Bluehost, they are incredibly affordable and have great customer service to work with. But what Bluehost also offers is a free domain name when you buy the 1-year plan (something that I spent extra on when I began because I didn’t know this). This totally makes it worth purchasing an annual plan instead of paying monthly!
Step #5 – Signing Up for Bluehost
After you have figured out a name for what you would like to call your blog, you will go to Bluehost, choose the Basic Plan (that’s all you need right now!) and then, type in the name for what you would like to call your blog, under the “new domain.” I also suggest choosing “.com” as the ending because that is the most recognized and it keeps things easy for your customers to remember!
Click here to head to Bluehost now to start setting up your blog, so you can start making money!
I do recommend choosing the site backup pro, it is a very small fee for your sanity & mental health (not kidding!) to know that Bluehost is automatically backing up your blog. It’s a huge relief to know that if something happens, you won’t lose everything! You want to know that everything you created and spent hours on is not going to get lost if something happens. It’s worth it to have some protection in place for this.
*A domain is the URL that you type in, the “www…” part that someone will type into their browser to go to your blog.
When you purchase Bluehost for your hosting, you also get WordPress.org already installed (the correct WordPress, that is!).
Because you are paying for your hosting for your blog through Bluehost, you are able to more easily monetize it as opposed to using a free platform where you are really restricted.
Once you have purchased your hosting and domain through Bluehost you are set to begin your blog! I am SO excited for you to begin this journey!
I hope you found this helpful. Had I known the real differences between WordPress.org and WordPress.com and that Bluehost included a domain name AND hosting AND WordPress.org installed, it would have saved me hundreds and a lot of headaches!
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Do you have any questions or anything to add? Leave me a comment and I will respond back to you!