Let’s learn how to blog and start a successful blog with WordPress in 3 minutes today. I kid you not, many people will probably read the title and think that’s a lie it’s not that easy, but it really is. SiteGround walks you through the process and in around 3-5 minutes you can already be on your writing journey.
Not only am I going to walk you through the sign up process with SiteGround. But I have taken the time to give you many tips that will help you to be a successful blogger.
Blogging for beginners step by step tutorial.
1. Find a good niche
2. Pick a domain name that best fits what your blog is about.
3. You need a self-hosted platform (WordPress.org)
4. You need web hosting. There are many affordable monthly web hosting companies out there such as FastComet, Bluehost, HostGator, A2 Hosting, etc. but I strongly recommend SiteGround because of their awesome features such as SSD Drives, NGINX server speed, free CDN, and their affordable hosting prices. SiteGround is the most popular web host among bloggers. It is extremely reliable, creates a fast site, and it is the official WP endorsed host.
5. Add a theme, preferably the (Genesis Framework).
6. Read these helpful tips below.
Why choose a self-hosted platform?
Before I start, I want to first explain why you need a self-hosted platform. WordPress.org is free, but you have to pay for hosting, but don’t worry SiteGround can be purchased for as low as $3.95/mo.
Never ever choose free hosted sites like Blogger or WordPress (the.com version) if you’re a serious blogger or business owner and you want to succeed. Yes with those sites you don’t have to pay for hosting, but you don’t own the site. Your site can be deleted at anytime for any reason and this happens often. Not only that, but they don’t rank well, it’s hard to make money with them, and you will have to have a hideous unattractive domain name. For example, newblog.blogspot.com or newblog.wordpress.com. There are so many drawbacks. No true blogger will ever recommend this. Don’t wait and say you will do it later, which will only cause you pain. Start now.
SiteGround blog set up in 3 minutes. 7 steps
1. Let’s begin, click this link to open up SiteGround.
2. Select WordPress hosting.
3. Pick a SiteGround plan.
4. Enter your domain name.
5. Fill in your account information.
6. The SiteGround preinstall wizard automatically installs WordPress for you.
7. Create a WordPress username/password and login.
8. Now you know how to officially create a website so when you make another one it will take you a shorter amount of time.
For new bloggers who want a fast website buy a theme at Genesis here.
The things that you think you need you really don’t need. When I started my first blog a few years ago I thought I needed to go to Forest Theme and buy one of their magazine styled themes. You don’t need that at all. They might look cool right out of the box, but honestly they are not the best option. They will slow your site down. Look at any big known blogger around and see what they are using. Everybody is using Genesis because it is so beginner friendly and it helps your SEO. If you want a fast website it’s either you choose to buy your themes at StudioPress, which is the Genesis Framework or Thesis.
Fix your blogging attitude.
When you start a blog you have to have the right mindset if you want to be successful. If you think that one day your blog is going to be awesome then most likely it will be awesome. If you start saying to yourself it’s never going to work, this is too hard. I will never make a good blog. With this mindset you will fail because you are telling yourself that you will quit. I guarantee you that if you don’t quit you will eventually make a living online doing what you love. Think about it for a second all you have to do is not quit. This is probably the best advice that anyone can give you when starting a business. You might not see world domination results in a week, but with a strategic plan and persistence there is nothing stopping you from making part-time or even full-time income in less than 12 months. Depending on your niche in 3 to 4 months just Adsense by itself can pay for your water bill or more.
Don’t just start writing target your audience.
A big mistake that many beginner bloggers make is that they don’t target their audience. They start writing about anything and everything and have no goal in mind. You have to find out what will your site be about. What is your goal? Don’t think that just writing alone is going to help you gain passive income. How are you going to benefit your readers? What can you offer them? Targeting your audience will eventually lead to generating income to your site. The reason for this is because you are catering to their needs, you will gain loyal readers, you can promote your products to them easier, or you can refer other people’s stuff to them.
This should be obvious, but when you make dull titles you get dull results. Make epic titles to your post to make readers say wow, I’m going to that site. If you have a stupid plain title for a blog post always think of ways you can make it better. Always remember that it is good to use Keywords in your title to rank better, but never keyword stuff it.
Make your posts look good.
No one wants to read a page full of clutter. Do your readers a favor and add spacing in your blog posts. Add beauty to your work. Add bulletins, add numbers, bold words, italicize words, add color, underline, make sure your words aren’t tiny, and check for spelling errors. If you struggle in this area and you are a serious writer then get the Forbes recommended Grammarly writing checker.
Don’t be a copycat.
Write about what you’re interested in and what you know. If you write about stuff that doesn’t interest you then you won’t get far and it’s just plain not smart. If you’re a fashion blogger then don’t kill yourself trying to write about cars. If you are a food blogger don’t kill yourself trying to write about health. Stick to your comfort zone and you will succeed. Don’t try to write about what everyone else writes about. Write about what fits you. Don’t copy someone else’s way of doing things. You need to stand out against the bunch. Do something that separates you from the competition. If you write copycat stuff people are going to email you and say your blog sucks, I read this before.
Get familiar with Google Analytics and Webmasters.
As soon as you start your blog make sure that you set up Google Analytics and Google Webmasters Tools. These are going to be helpful for you in the long run. I will explain what they both are below.
Google Analytics – This tool tells you how many people visited your site and how much page views you have. This tool also tells you how many people are currently on your site, where are they from, what keywords they used to get on your site, whether they came from social media or not, etc. This tool offers a lot and as you can see it can benefit you greatly.
Google Webmaster Tools – This tool gets down and dirty and does it all. It tells you how many links you have pointing to your site and where they are coming from. It tells you if you have any broken pages, what keywords you are ranking for, etc. If Google ever warns you about anything they will send you a message in your Webmaster Tools. If you ever want to remove a bad link that is linking to your site it is done here as well.
How to blog and make money?
Is blogging a get rich quick scheme? No, but with diligence over time blogging can turn into your full-time job. If you’re expecting anything in a week, month, or two months then you will be disappointed. Overnight success is a myth. But some bloggers make income faster than others depending on their niche or game plan. It is possible to make part-time income and sometimes full-time income in 3 – 10 months.
Below I will show you just a few ways that you can start obtaining an income with your blog.
Google Adsense – Don’t limit yourself to just Adsense. Most young bloggers get confused by Google Adsense and think oh this is how websites make money. No! Don’t put yourself in a box. While Adsense might be the quickest way to receive a little change, it is in no way the best or close to being the best. Don’t get me wrong. Some sites are doing awesome with it. Some people are making over $40,000 dollars a year with Adsense easy, but you can be making way more than that.
Donations – You will be surprised how much people will help you when they love your work. You can easily set up a donation cart in your website. When you create a friendship with your readers then those same readers can later on donate 1, 5, 10, 20 dollars, or more. People support other people and things that they love.
Sell things – You can sell anything with a website. You can sell ebooks, services, cookbooks, etc. Imagine that you’re getting 20,000 monthly visitors, which is easy to achieve. With targeted traffic and by this I mean people who come looking to buy something or who could potentially buy something, you can easily make over $500 dollars or more a month this way. Think about all of the great things that you can sell in your niche.
Affiliate marketing – Refer people to buy products and services and get a percentage of the sale.
As soon as you set up your blog go to plugins, select add new, and get a sharing plugin. Don’t let your blog get caught without one. You’re missing out on a lot. You never know who might get a hold of your shared content. There are many social plugins to choose from such as Shareaholic, Hupso Share Buttons, Share Buttons by AddToAny, AddThis, WP Social Sharing, and much more. Test them out and choose the best one for you.
Share your content
Not only should you make sure that you have a social plugin so your audience can share your work, but make sure that you have your social media links on your site so people can follow you. Social media is going to be a big part of your blogging success so make sure that you use all the social media sites to your advantage. Promote on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest, Tumblr, Snapchat, etc. Tryout different social sites and see what works better for your business website or blog. I also want to add that if you have a business, then make sure that you set up a Google+ page for it which will help you on Google greatly. Make sure that you’re not only relying on Google and Bing to get traffic.
Read other blogs
If you want to have a successful blog make sure that you’re constantly reading other blogs in your niche. Not only should you read this site, but you should read sites like Quick Sprout, Problogger, etc. To grow in anything you need to constantly learn more. Also, don’t be afraid to write a comment and build a relationship with other bloggers.
Don’t try to scam the system
What I mean by this is that sometimes instead of taking our time and building our site the right way we can try to cheat the system which can lead to a Google penalty. If you want a fast Google penalty I will show you the things you need to do.
Buying links – It’s so easy to buy links these days. You can buy them from websites like Fiverr, BlackHatWorld, and even eBay. Although they might claim to be Google friendly and penalty proof don’t do it. I know we all have been tempted to buy 20 fast links, but it could come back to bite you in the butt. Just play it safe and get your links the right way.
Keyword stuffing – This has been around for a long time. Keyword stuffing is where you try to manipulate your ranking by performing shady tactics such as using the same words over and over to rank higher for that keyword. Imagine you were talking to someone and they kept on saying the same words in an unnatural way. Google knows when you’re trying to trick them and they will take action. You can keyword stuff your blog posts, permalink structure, tags, images, etc. Be careful that you never do this. Watch out for companies that claim we build high pr links fast.
Give people the good stuff.
Sometimes as beginner blogs we have the save the best for last mentality and this should not be. You might have bomb posts that you want to write about, but you are holding back, don’t! Imagine that a new restaurant opens up and they say that we have a new meal that will rock your socks off, but we want to save it until the restaurant grows. I’d be very dissatisfied. Your readers want the best now. Don’t hold back on your posts. Everything that makes your blog stand out bring it to the table as soon as possible.
Connect with your readers
You have to make sure that you’re connecting with your readers and you allow them to connect with you. Add a commenting system to your blog. Allow readers to share their thoughts about your post. I know that sometimes bloggers don’t want to have to deal with a huge volume of commenters. I highly recommend that you get a comment section plugin such as Disqus, wpDiscuz, Livefyre, Facebook comments WordPress, IntenseDebate, CommentLuv, etc. But it’s not mandatory. Make sure that you at least set up a contact form so you can help your readers, receive advice, and receive honest criticism from your readers. There are many contact form plugins. Test them out and find the one that is right for your site.
Make sure that your site is not slow.
Google cares a lot about site speed and this is now a ranking factor. Below I will show you how to have better site speed.
Images – Make sure that you optimize your images for better load speeds and SEO.
Plugins – Don’t add plugins that you don’t need, but make sure that you have a cache plugin preferably W3 Total Cache.
MaxCDN – For even faster speed times install MaxCDN which I use for my blogs
Check website speed – If you want to check your site speed then use tools like PageSpeed Insights, Pingdom tools, GTMetrix.
Set up a company email
When you first install WordPress make sure that you set up your blog email. It’s never wise to use an Aol or Yahoo for your business. You need an email with your domain name. For example, my company email is email@example.com. To set it up go to your email section in your hosting cPanel.
Don’t forget the list.
If you don’t have a plugin to build email subscribers you are losing as a blogger. I guarantee you that a list will increase your profit significantly. At first you might not understand how could setting up a subscriber list form help you in the long run, but believe me it’s more than just a promotional tool. Start building emails immediately. If anything ever goes wrong you always have your list with your loyal readers.
You need backlinks
- Backlinks are links from other blogs that are directed toward your site and they are a big factor in SEO. Google favors content with a good number of quality links.
- Write explosive content with a lot of information. Unique helpful posts packed with information are more likely to receive links.
- Try to write over 500 words in each post.
- Share your content on social media.
- Write for other bloggers.
- Take amazing pictures and contact other website owners and allow them to use your image for free, but make sure that they give a credit link back to your site.
- You can also comment on forums and other blogs and leave a link, but make sure that you don’t overdue it because remember Google hates spam.
Make sure that you are linking to some of your old posts which has many benefits. Set up a recent posts widget in your sidebar or under your blog post to drive traffic. As a blogger you don’t want people to read and leave. You want them to stay and check out different articles to help them and interlinking does just that. Linking to other posts give your older posts more link juice which helps with SEO rankings. Make sure that you don’t overdue this or your visitors will be annoyed.
Make sure that you use one header tag per post, which helps greatly with SEO. In 2015 many of the themes you may purchase automatically come with a title tag that is already H1 tagged for you.
When you first set up your blog make sure that you change your permalink structure (which is the URL) to what you desire. To do this you must go to settings and then go to permalinks. I put mine at post name. You can alter it when you are making a post. Reminder, once you publish a post never change your permalink.
Make sure that you add an SEO plugin which has huge benefits for SEO. When it comes to this there is really only two options. Yoast SEO plugin or All In One. Most bloggers are currently using Yoast and it has many wonderful features.
Don’t leave your readers and allow them to rot. It’s frustrating when you haven’t visited a blog in 2 or 3 weeks and when you come back they have no updates. Your readers want to be fed with your information. There are some established bloggers who get lazy and blog every month or couple of months. Don’t let that be you. Try to at least blog once a week. If you’re always busy you can make other people blog for you as well.
Never forget that time is precious. Every second that goes by is a second that you will never get back. Instead of watching TV all the time, do something better with your time such as brainstorming what your next post will be about. Find out different ways on how you can make your articles better. Take the time to share your content. We don’t realize how much time we waste in this world. Make your time count by doing positive things that will help you in the future.
Being able to spend more time with your family while you work at home is not the only benefit of blogging. It’s truly a great feeling to get emails that say you have inspired me to do better and I have learned a lot from you. God wants us to help each other. As you grow into a better blogger you are becoming an expert in your niche and you will be able to influence more people with your words.
Inspiration for your new blog journey.
- 99.9% of great bloggers are not awesome on day 1. Their awesomeness is the accumulation of the value they create over time. Darren Rowse
- When you feel like quitting: think about why you started.
- Never quit. If you stumble, get back up. What happened yesterday no longer matters. Today’s another day so get back on track and move closer to your dreams and goals. You can do it.
- You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, So… get on your way!’
- In the end we only regret the chances we didn’t take.
I really hoped that you enjoyed my blogging advice and I encourage you to begin now. The sooner you start the sooner you will rank and the sooner your blog will grow. If you need any help feel free to email me.