For everything you are going to start in life, you need dedication and commitment if you plan to stick with it. Blogging is a way of helping people who are searching on the internet for information or solution. If you are planning to help a group of people, because you cannot help everyone on the internet, you have to be committed. You can either help these people as a hobby or make money doing it.
What is Blogging
Blogging is all about helping internet readers with facts, information or personal tips. Knowing a topic very well makes you better able to serve these people. People love to read about real life incidents and stories. If you are a good storyteller, you will soon have lots and lots of experiences to share with your readers. This will ensure that your readers keep coming back to you!
To do all this you first have to get a domain name and a blog host. This is followed by creating a blogging platform such as WordPress. Once all this is done it is now time to embark on a journey of writing great content that will add value to your followers. Let us now divulge more information about how to start blogging and stick with it.
So the first step is to choose the niche/topic you want to blog about. You have to understand your short term and long term blogging goals with regards to the topics you write about. Have a clear purpose of what you want to communicates to your readers during the first few months of blogging as well as the rest of the blogging period.
Your passion for anything can be the driving force for success. So if you are serious about blogging it needs all your passion, dedication and commitment. Finding a niche is not just a clique it is the backbone of your blog. A niche is an idea of the specific topic you will concentrate on and the group of people you will target to help. For me, this blog is directed towards Jamaicans who want to make extra money to make a better life for themselves and their family. The method I introduced is making money online.
I suggest you choose a niche about something you are very passionate about. That could be caring for your pets, backyard gardening, travelling, how to make money online, photography, Jamaican foods, Jamaican beaches, childcare or…. almost anything!
Take some time to look at topics which can keep YOU motivated. Unless you are keen to explore your areas of interest, you cannot have something new to share with your readers every day. Choose a topic you are knowledgeable about or willing to learn about.
How to Find a Niche
If you are struggling to find a niche and you have no idea what to start blogging about using the following five steps to help you.
- Do you have a passion or a burning idea you want to share?
- What is your area of expertise that you can comfortably share with others?
- Can you identify a problem that you can solve?
- Is there a topic you are knowledgeable to write about?
- Which group of people would you like to help?
It is now time to brainstorm…..No idea or subject matter is wrong.
After you have decided on a topic, evaluate it and see how best it can work. Who will you target? What or how will you share that idea with them? How will it help them? What will you gain from it?
Get a Domain Name and Hosting
Now that you have decided what you are going to write about, who you will target and how you can help them; it is time to get a domain name and get your blog on the internet. You might ask what is a domain name. A domain name is an address to where internet users can find your website. Web hosting is like the house at the address, it is what your website will live in. So it is the house at the address of your website. Web hosting provides the storage space for your website. The domain name alone is useless it is like having an address with no house on the property.
You can either buy these separately or together. There are hundreds of company online that offer these services all you have to do is search for domain names and web hosting. You can try Go Daddy or Name Cheap for the domain name, those are the most popular ones. I use both depending on the going price for the domain name or the availability of the name I want at the time. For web hosting, I only use Host Gator. You don’t have to buy them separately, all three that I mentioned offer both services. It’s just that when I started blogging I was taught that it is best to keep your domain name and web hosting separately. I am not sure what is the reason for that.
After getting all that done it is time to find someone to make all this work so you can share your passion with your readers. You will need someone to do all the heavy lifting and put everything technical things together. That is why you need to put your website on a blogging platform. It’s like having the address and the house but there had to be the land space to put the house. Most hosting companies guide you on how to set up your domain name on a blogging platform. The most popular one is WordPress. You don’t need to know the technical issues they do all that for you.
WOW, that was a mouth full, it sounds very complicated and seems like hard work. The truth is, it is not very hard but it can be overwhelming. The good news is that you don’t have to go through all that if you don’t want to…..although it is a great learning experience. There is an easier way out. There is this excellent program that guides you to set up a website in minutes. They do all the work for you. I have first-hand experience, in fact, this website was created by them. Take a look at this awesome program HERE.
Create Quality Content
Now that your blogging house is ready it is time to furnish it. Just like how you put beautiful furniture in the house that you live in it is the same way you have to furnish your blog site. The furniture you will use are well-written contents that are helpful and relevant to your readers. The photos, images and other graphics that you will integrate into your blogging will give it the finishing touch. Have unique images and photos that make your posts stand out.
You will have to devote a lot of your time to research. Whatever your topic/niche is about it is best to research in order to remain relevant and to provide correct information. Try to be on top of your game in order to stay in the competition because everyone is going all out to be the best.
Before you start blogging do a thorough research on your topic. Read other blogs in your niche, watch videos and participate in online forums. It is easy to find these, just type in your niche in the search engine and search for articles on the topic. Then search for forums using the same niche. By doing this you will get to know what people are actually looking and how you can help them to solve their problems in a much better and easier way.
They say you must possess good writing skills because the words you choose to convey and express yourself are going to make all the difference. I agree with the latter part but you can acquire these skills with practice the more you write the better you will get.
Don’t worry if you don’t have all the skills when you are starting out because once you start writing they will improve very fast. When I started in 2014, my biggest obstacle was my writing. However, I kept on learning new things and read books to improve my writing skills.
Getting Visitors to your Website
If you have been packing on good content on your website you should be well on your way to success. Blogging is mainly about content. The experts say that “Content is King” for you to be successful in blogging you have to publish great contents consistently. When you are satisfied with the quality of the contents and the direction your blogging is going you will get a lot of visitors. The search engines will reward you by sending people to your website.
It is also your job to find people to send to your website. You have to go to them, find the places they hang out and market your website. The most popular place is social media and forums. After creating and publishing those great articles which will attract a lot of traffic you have to find a way to get the email addresses of these people so you can contact them at a later date. Please remember that these visitors are the people you are going to help solve their problem or enhance their lives with the service or product you have to offer.
You take their email address so you can address them directly in a more personal way and sharing/introducing your product or service to them. At this point, you have to very innovate and creative in the way you market your product to them. You have to bear in mind that if they don’t buy you will not make any money. Don’t be too pushy but remain assertive. Find creative and captivating ways to convince them of the value of the product to them.
How do you get these emails? Most people do this by offering their visitor a free gift in exchange for their email address. That is what I do and would suggest you do also. You can either give away a free eBook, a training course or a report on important areas of your niche.
Make the gift attractive
People like valuable things especially if it is free so some will give their email addresses in exchange. Make sure the free gift is of good quality something you would pay good money to get. The mailing list is very important. Again, the experts say “the money is in the list” so you have to get the list at all cost. A mailing list plays a fundamental role in sustaining your blogging career. It enables a blogger to access inboxes of followers and potential visitors. This also facilitates generating traffic for the new blog as opposed to entirely depending on search engines.
Creating a niche in your blogging endeavour demands consistency. Do not just write a few posts and be contented. If you want to attract and maintain followers and appear on search engines, you have to write a couple of posts in a month.
Blogging successfully involves sharing the content through social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram. Sharing the blog posts with your network of followers through these platforms guarantees distribution to other individuals. This increases traffic for your blog by attracting more visitors to your blogging platform.
Final Thoughts on Blogging
How much time you give to blogging is directly proportional to the income generated by your blog. So, be prepared to devote a lot of time to blogging. Finding time should not be a problem if you are driven by passion. Lack of time is never a constraint for someone who is fired by ambition and is hungry for success.
Sitting down and relaxing once you start a blog, at least for the first few months, is not an option. You will have to work hard continuously posting useful content to your readers. Once you are able to attract a good number of visitors, you will be in a better position to start making money from blogging.
Along with the time, you will also need patience, perseverance and faith in yourself. YES, you can surely make money from your blog. After all, there are millions across the world who are doing that every moment!
The key to being a successful blogger, however, is to have confidence in yourself.
Four years ago when I started I knew nothing about blogging. Since then I have built a reasonably successful blog that makes money monthly. Some months are better than some. I suspect by the end of the year I should be halfway to achieving my goals.
I stay up late at nights, wake early in the mornings to write articles and do research. Most times I write articles all weekend in between my household chores. There are work days when I spend my lunchtime writing articles and here I am at 4:13 a.m. writing this article.
Learn all you can about Blogging
On top of being committed and dedicating your time, you have to learn and increase your knowledge about the business. I knew nothing about WordPress, HTML, PHP, Adsense, or affiliate products when I started – I had to teach myself. For me, that was part of the fun. Looking back now, I can remember spending almost a whole night trying to insert a sign-up form on my website and trying to upload my free eBook so visitors could get it.
I struggled with how to get visitors to come to my blog, how to balance my time in writing articles and marketing my website, how do I get an ad to show up only on certain articles and how to insert a coder in my website header……. and the list goes on. The good news is, I gradually learned to do all these and much more by educating myself daily and by trial and error.
Traffic, Traffic, Traffic
One last thing before I end this article, your success and how much money you make after writing all those wonderful articles hinges on traffic. You can’t make meaningful money blogging with 20 visitors a day. I started earning hundreds of dollars a month when I started getting hundreds of visitors a day. That took me about 6 months. While there are plenty of examples of bloggers who hit instant success on the launch of their blog, for most of us it takes time. It takes time to generate content; it takes time to get noticed by Google, and it takes time to build relationships with other bloggers. I almost gave up many times. I am glad I didn’t.
Stick With It
My encouragement is to stick to it and whether the storms that might come your way. The nature of this business is so dynamic that no two experiences are alike. The struggles I went through might just be stepping blocks for you. It is possible that you could meet success in a few months while it took me a year.
Go ahead and make your dreams become a reality your family, your country and most importantly yourself is depending on you to start blogging and stick with it.
Feel free to leave your comments below and to share this article with your fellow bloggers.