Have you ever thought of a life without an 8-5 job?
Have you ever thought of becoming your own boss?
Have you ever thought of the joy of earning a passive income?
Probably not. Blogging can give you all the things that you can never imagine while doing a salaried job.
We all crave for such a life. 😋
That is the reason why we are here to help all those who want to succeed in their blogging journey.
This article has all the important information that will help you to start making your first paycheck by blogging.
Let us begin. Who are fit for blogging?
There are two important skills that are required for one to be a blogger, writing and researching. You can still be an average writer but that does not matter.
What matters most is patience, perseverance, and persistence. You will get better over time as you work hard.
There are four major steps that are involved in blogging
#1 choosing a niche
#2 creating the blog
#3 driving traffic
Driving traffic requires a lot of patience especially if you are having zero investment. Monetization is simpler especially if you follow the steps we are about to share here.
Earning your first paycheck may take some time of up to a year depending on the niche that you choose and the progress of the blog. Hard work will not fail you, though we are gifted differently in intelligence.
Choosing blogger or WordPress
Blogger is a free blogging site that is powered by Google. On the other hand, WordPress is gigantic CMS platform that powers more websites on the internet.
It is the best one can use for their investment.
If you don’t have any cash for investment, you can choose to go with blogger as it is for zero investment. However, you may still need to migrate later from blogger to WordPress.
Investing money will increase your earning potential and also reduce the time taken to make your first paycheck. If you are capable, do not hesitate to invest your money.
In this article, we will deal with detailed set up of WordPress.
#1 Choosing the niche
The answer to this question is what you are going to write about. It should be something
Worth your time and effort
You have passion about it
That you will not be bored writing about after some time
List the topics that you are interested in writing about. It may be technology, health, gaming, vehicles or anything that matters to you like music.
Remember, you don’t need to be good at it but you must be determined that you will be good at it with time.
Always choose topics that are broad so that you will have many subcategories that you can still write about. Once you have your list of topics, you can then narrow down the list.
Open Google trends to help you analyze and compare what is trending. Enter your first topic in the search bar and then enter the second topic in the field of compare. You can make a comparison of up to five topics at a time.
The greater the number the greater the opportunities and competition. It will be obvious to encounter greater competition where there are greater opportunities but do not be afraid of competition. You can still succeed if you follow our steps here.
After you have chosen your subcategory, you can now start small and grow exponentially.
Choosing the blog name
A blog name is usually considered to be important in the process. It should be unique just like the email username because you need a dot com to get it up and running. That is your domain name.
Go and search for a domain name and you will have a hard time choosing one. It is not easy to get one. That is why we advise you choose a unique name that will make it easy for you to obtain a domain. It should also be easy to be remembered as it is a brand.
Creating the first blog
Creating a blog is as simple as installing a mobile app on the mobile device.
If you are already a techie in internet staff who already knows all about domains and hosting, you can skip to the next explanation and proceed.
Web hosting and domain names are the two most important terms you will frequently here when we talk about websites.
Having a domain name and getting web hosting is similar to buying a phone number of a smartphone.
Web hosting is compared to mobile phone and domain is like SIM card. A SIM card/ mobile number cannot function without a mobile device, isn’t it?
The same way a domain is useless and can be of no help without web hosting.
Web hosting server is a particular computer that stores and computes website information and serve it to the different users around the Internet when the information is requested.
Setting up a WordPress blog using Bluehost
As we have stated earlier, you have to get web hosting for you to start a blog.
There are tons of website hosting services available but we would recommend Bluehost for their excellent support & service in offering the services.
Once you open the Bluehost link, you will find the available options to help you get started with. At this time, the price for a WordPress site being hosted in Bluehost starts with $2.95 for a month that’s roughly $120 for 3 years roughly, but don’t go for 3 years. Choose 12-month tier at the price of around $45.40.
Domains are free when you choose Bluehost to purchase their hosting plan. Nice, no? you will not experience the headache of setting up domain name servers.
Bluehost will take care of all those things for you.
Type your preferred unique blog name in the new domain box and then click Next.
Then comes the page where you will be required to fill a form with your details. Make sure that you have unchecked all the extra service boxes to match the cost of the plan you are purchasing $45.
Once you are done with filling all the details in the form, click submit button.
You will then be automatically be logged in.
Once you are now logged in, you will start seeing the Bluehost control panel where they will provide you with a great list of tools. Look out for the WordPress icon in the tools section and click on the same.
Now you will be able to see a marketplace which puts up professional themes and plugins for WordPress and you can look for the best.
You will then be asked to choose the domain name to which you want to install your WordPress to. Select the particular unique domain (your blog name) and click on the install button to continue.
If there may be any other themes that are already pre-installed in the domain, Bluehost will ask for your permission to override the same.
Then they will provide you with two options. The first one is advanced options where you can set up the preferred Title for your website, then create an admin username and a password.
You might also be required to enter your email address that you want them to associate with this domain.
When you are done with this appropriate credentials for your website, you then must login to the second option where you are required to agree to the terms and conditions.
After this is done, you can click on the green icon for install button. This will ensure successful installation of WordPress in your website.
After you have successfully installed WordPress in your website, you can now log into the WordPress dashboard of your website using your admin credentials.
When you type in yourblogname.com/wp-admin you will be required to enter your admin credentials which will then give you access inside the admin side of your WordPress website.
You have now taken the first step of making money through Blogging!!!
Now that you have your blog up and running, it’s now time to choose a template/theme / design to make the blog authentic and professional.
Installing a theme for your Wordpress blog
Once you enter into the WordPress dashboard, you find the option for Themes under the Appearance section.
Click the Themes icon then the Add New button.
You will be given a number of free themes for you to choose from for your website. You will also be given the options that help you shortlist the themes by using some filters.
These filters will help you to choose the desired theme for your website based color you want, appearance and the features you might want to install.
When you narrow down to any particular theme, you can click on the install button and the files for that theme will be downloaded to your website. Once the download is completed you will find the button to Activate on that theme which you could click on to activate the theme for your website.
Creating the first post on your WordPress blog
Creating a post or an article to publish on your website begins by getting into website dashboard. You can do that by entering credentials for admin when asked for after typing in yourblogname.com/wp-admin.
The standard editing portions have options such as “Add Media” which will help you to include media such as Photos and Videos in your article.
Beneath this text box, you will find post settings which will help you design the post, the way you want it to.
The right panel has options that enable you to choose the page in which you want the particular article to be published. There is another option named as ‘Tags’ that will also help you add tags related to the particular article that might help the visitor of your website in navigating.
Once you are finished with the typing and editing of your article, you can preview the same with the help of Preview button on the right side of the screen.
You can also save the post you have as a draft using the Save Draft button.
Once you are satisfied with how the is appearing, you can publish the same by clicking on the ‘Publish’ button on the right side.
You are half done!!!
Now comes the tricky part, driving traffic!!!
Driving Traffic to Your Blog
This is considered one of the hardest part of every blogger’s journey. Your task of setting up and running a blog is not accomplished until you drive people to see your blog.
How then should you drive traffic to your blog?
You can use these simple methods.
Facebook and Twitter play the major roles when you are choosing the social media platform. So it is advisable for you to create your brand pages on Facebook and Twitter. There are two types of promotions that you can do to your Facebook and Twitter pages to help you get traffic.
Organic – This is where you Invite all your family and friends to like and follow your page.
Paid – This is where you start to promote your page using Facebook and Twitter ads. Facebook ads and twitter ads work well if done correctly.
Facebook is the most used and offers a consistent source of traffic by many publishers. The only thing to keep in mind is People Engagement.
Whether you are going to use paid promotions or not, that doesn’t matter, you must ensure that you keep your page interactive by posting a lot of user-engaging content, these can be photos, videos or messages that will keep them posted instead of just posting links to your article.
By having a number of page likes on your Facebook page it does not matter at all if your page is not interactive by posting user engaging content every now and then.
Say you have 3000-page likes on Facebook and you are posting a video or a photo to your page. What happens next?
There is something known as the Facebook News Feed Algorithm. This ranks Facebook posts based on user’s interest. There will be other thousands of posts that will be on the queue to a user’s Newsfeed. So getting your post to appear to all page liker’s news feed is something that is almost an impossible job.
That is the reason why we emphasize the need for people engagement. If you spend a lot more time on your page’s post, then your future posts will have better chances to appear on news feed.
Twitter is another social media alternative you can use for Facebook. Hashtags on Twitter plays a major role in. If you are posting viral content with its appropriate hashtag, then you will get good reach irrespective of the number of your followers.
But don’t solely depend on Twitter since it does not have great potential, unlike Facebook.
Use a site that can give you all the twitter trends of the region you want to target and use the hashtag to post your viral content. There are so many such sites such as trends24.in
I believe you have some knowledge of the term Search Engine.
Without using Google and Facebook, most people won’t realize the existence of the Internet.
Hence, it does not come as a surprise that the majority of us don’t know any search engine other than Google.
Forget the other search engines and focus mainly on Google since others have a minority of the search engine market share compared to Google.
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is a technique that is used to optimize our website to help you get higher rankings in Search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo etc.
Search engine traffic is one of the most lucrative free traffic you can ever get. This is the crucial point where each and every blogger struggles.
Let us tell you a simple overview of how a search engine ranks websites.
Search engines, mainly Google, ranks web pages based on two main factors
Both of these factors are very important.
How do the search engines find out whether a web page is reputable or not?
There are many aspects that are involved in finding a reputation of a website. The Page rank is one of the most important factors that is used to find out the reputation and it is calculated based on the number of backlinks that come to your blog.
Reputation is measured by search engines by calculating how many other similar websites are talking about your website through linking to your blog URL.
This is basically finding out whether your website is relevant to what the user searched or not. Let us say for example a user searches for “top blogging tips”, here the relevance signal analyses whether your site has enough content that is related to blogging tips.
However, the reputation occupies the first place followed by relevance signal.
This is the simplest form of explanation on how search engines rank websites. Many other things have changed lately in determining reputation and relevance. We cannot stick to the old way of backlinks and other signals to help rank our website on Google alone. A lot goes in place.
Of course, backlinks is still one of the most prominent signals but the approach towards the calculation of backlinks has now changed a lot from what it was in the past.
Tips to get the most out of Google and rank higher
Great content is like the key to this kingdom.
Many people say great content is enough but nobody will tell you what they mean by great content. When we say great content, we actually mean content that is unique, comprehensive and also well researched.
Put all your time on doing extensive research and produce a great piece of content that your competitors cannot even come up with.
Build your brand to be strong in using social networks.
Building your brand in social networks like Facebook helps you gain reputation in the eyes of Google and this will better your ranking.
Create a Facebook page and get people engaged by regularly posting lot of great photos and videos. Article links hardly get shared of social platforms; therefore, make good use of videos and photos.
Facebook videos have a higher engagement rate than photos.
If you can create a short video you can use it to promote your article then you can reach a great number of people.
Spend around five to ten dollars on Facebook ads to get initial traction. Choose boost post option to boost your posts relevant to your niche. Many people boost the page but that will not work better than boosting a post.
Make good use of Pinterest to share any images related to your article.
Vertical images usually work best in Pinterest. This is because they have a larger surface for the use to see what you have posted and they will be prompted to click and see.
If your pin goes viral, then your related article will easily gain traffic from Google.
Help people online by providing value.
Make great use of websites like quora to answer questions that people ask and share your blog link when needed. Don’t spam. Provide value.
Read other people’s blogs in your niche and share your feedback in their comments section.
Paste your link where it is needed. Again don’t spam your links. It should be valuable to the website owner and congratulating them for the great article; otherwise, they will mark your comment as spam.
Link to other websites that are useful in your article.
Many bloggers mistake that if they provide link to their competitors they will not do well in Google. That is not true. Actually, linking other useful articles to yours helps Google understand your content easily.
But don’t link to the same kind of article as the one you are writing; you should link to similar articles not the same one.
Say you are writing about the list of online jobs, you should link to a jobs portal instead linking to another list of online jobs.
Once you link an article to yours, email the website owner and share with them your article link mentioning that you have linked your article to their webpage. If they find it useful, they will link back to you or at least they will share your link to their social platforms.
Quality over Quantity.
This is a very important piece of advice that many bloggers fail to follow. Publishing one article a week will be good but it should have great content and engage the readers.
Register your website on Google search console/webmaster to monitor clicks and impressions.
Improve the articles that are performing poor in your blog. Update the existing articles that are getting more impressions but are making less CTR.
Create your page on Google+ and ensure you update your links regularly.
This helps to gain traffic from Google after a period of time.
Internal link structure is essential.
Ensure your website hierarchy is in a good shape. All the pages in your blog should link to a homepage and all the category pages.
In-article links have greater value than any other links.
This means that you should link to an article in another related article.
Monetizing Your Blog
Monetization can be done through several techniques. We will cover a few of these basic techniques here.
Making money through ads online require a high amount of traffic to make a good income from it whereas affiliate marketing only needs targeted traffic (not necessarily high). It is better to fully concentrate on affiliate marketing initially since you will get less traffic.
There are two main options to get advertisements for your blog. One is to choose from a wide range of third-party ad publisher programs like Google Adsense, Media.net etc.
The second one is to get direct advertisements. Direct advertisements may be really hard to obtain when you are starting. So, we will discuss the first one – Ad publisher programs.
Google Adsense and Media.net are the best two ad publisher programs you can use to monetize your blog. We recommend Google Adsense over Media.net.
Also check: The Money Lesson
Google Adsense is the best way you can use to monetize your blog but to do so, you should have an approved Adsense account. Approval of your Adsense account may be difficult until your blog gets some traffic.
You should ensure to comply with all their terms and conditions before submitting for an application.It is advisable to apply for your AdSense account only when you get some traffic to your blog.
How Google Adsense works?
In simple terms, whenever an internet user clicks on an ad placed on your blog, you’ll get some money from Google. There are many other factors that may influence your earning potential.
We will discuss a few major Adsense optimization techniques in the following section. Please ensure that you read Adsense terms and conditions properly. If you click on your own ad, AdSense may ban your account.
You can also login to your Adsense dashboard to check Adsense earnings. You will get payment in your bank account once you reach the payment threshold of $100 USD.
AdSense terms you should know.
Cost Per Click (CPC)
Cost per click determines how much get paid for a click that happened on an ad. AdSense is mainly a CPC network, so much of your earnings are much dependent on CPC. CPCs are random, differs from one ad to other.
Geographical location also affects your CPC to a great extent. For example, The American countries have greater CPC than Asian countries. Hosting niche also has a greater CPC than a Beauty niche.
An impression represents a single viewed ad on your blog. If your ad is viewed by 1000 people, then you are said to have 1000 impressions.
Also remember, impressions are different from page views. You can have two or more ad units on a single page of your blog. So a page view is equal to three impressions (assuming you have 3three ad units placed in a single page).
Revenue Per Thousand Impressions (RPM)
This represents revenue that you earned from thousand impressions. Page RPM represents revenue obtained from 1000 page views.
Click Through Rate (CTR)
This is a percentage of how many clicks happened over the number of impressions delivered. The formula to obtain CTR is the number of times an ad is clicked divided by the number of times the page or ad unit is viewed.
Google AdSense Optimization Techniques
There are several factors that may influence your earnings such as the niche, Geographical location, domain authority etc. We should optimize our ad units to get the most out of AdSense.
There is no limit on the number of ad units that one can have on a page but AdSense restricts users from the loading ad units if you don’t have enough content.
If you have 4000 words article, then you can have six to eight ads in one page. So, place a reasonable number of ads according to the amount of content you have on your page.
Always do an experiment on ad slots by changing Content, In Article, Infeed and Link ad units to find out which ad units are doing better.
The content unit usually has a high CPC while link unit tends to have high CTR. You can decide which one of these to choose only after thorough experimentation. Sometimes you need to use both at different places.
You should also place ads where your visitors spend a lot of time. If your visitors spend a lot of time in the content area, you should include your ads in between the content.
Geographical Location of your visitors is very much important. You should concentrate more on getting visitors from American countries like the US, Mexico, Canada to help you get higher CPC.
Also, remember to link related posts in each and every article to increase page views per visitor.
Media.net is also one good alternative to Google AdSense. But you need to have good traffic before you can apply for a Media.net publisher account. Once you have some good traffic, follow these steps below to apply for a media.net publisher account.
Navigate to Media.net
Enter your name and website address
Wait for few days to get approval
You can place ads after getting approval. US and UK traffic is crucial in getting higher revenue in Media.net.
Affiliate marketing is also a great way to monetize your blog. You need to promote links products or services in your blog in order to make money.
Whenever a purchase is made through your link, you will get a certain percentage of commission. This process of marketing products and services is called Affiliate Marketing.
To earn affiliate income, you should promote products or service related to your niche. If your niche is about Books, then you should register yourself in a various bookstores affiliate program.
You can find various advertisers for your niche in affiliate marketplaces like Clickbank, Commission Junction, Alibaba, Impact Radius and Amazon.
After registration with the respective program, you have to grab affiliate links from respective products and place it in respective posts.
The other good thing about affiliate marketing is Cookie validity period. If it has a 90 days cookie period, then your visitor can purchase the product or service within the 90 day period.
This will ensure a guaranteed commission.
You will also get paid for whatever thing they purchase through your link irrespective of the linked product/service.
If you follow these steps above, you should start getting some traffic to your blog within the first four months.
If traffic comes, you should use it to earn through affiliate links. And also, you can apply for an AdSense account. Once it is approved, you will now have two ways to earn from your blog.
We hope that this article explains all the necessary information you needed to make money through blogging. Please let us know if you have any further suggestions using the comments section given below. Also, Subscribe to our blogging newsletter to get future updates about blogging.