Each day more and more people are realizing the huge potential of making blogging their first step to an online business. The start up costs are minimal, you can build an impressive and loyal readership over time, and once you learn to monetize it, you’ll start to bring in a decent income.
The methods to set up a blog are several. You can choose from WordPress, Blogger , or any other free sites which hosts blogging. Even better is if you set it up under your own domain name, which you can buy for no money at all.
Having a blog on your own domain is a must if you want to make serious money on it. That freedom is just something free blogging accounts don’t offer. Their terms and conditions will most likely bound you to not be able to promote anything actively. Plenty of people find their blogs being removed after having promoted something not allowed by the blog host.
Buying a domain and setting up a hosting account will cost you a few dollars, but the benefits in doing this will far outweigh the costs, which probably will be around $20 a year. A good deal for total freedom.
You will be choosing a theme that somewhat relates to your choice of subject. Google can help you in finding which themes best suit your topic. But choosing one that you really like the look of will also work.
But perhaps the most important question is what you will blog about. There really is nothing you couldn’t blog about, the possibilities are endless. Blogs ranges from gardening to jobs, parenting and celebrities. Everyone has something to offer the world, and that includes you!
Whatever you choose, you do have to be passionate about it. You will be writing on the topic several times a week, and without a genuine enthusiasm for what you’re writing, the readers will notice, showing the blog the same lack of enthusiasm.
With your topic chosen, it’s time to start writing blog posts. Scanning through a couple of blogs, you’ll notice the length of the posts varies a lot. From two paragraphs to a couple of thousands of words. Optimal length is posts in the range of 400-500 words with a lot of information and value.
A smart thing is to write a short blog entry, which in itself leads to a longer article. This will save a lot of space, making your front page easier to overview. The readers can then scroll through and read the ones they find interesting. WordPress has this feature built in.
Always keep in mind that there really are no rules when it comes to blogging, these are just guidelines to get you started, and that in the fast paced world we live in, out-of-the-box thinking is what keep things evolving.
With time you will get a feel for what works for you. Your blog will find its place and settle in a nice flow that both you and your readers will enjoy. Eventually your character and personality will start to shine through in your writing, something you should really value as it is one of the hallmarks of blogging. After all your blog is a personal account of your life and experiences, so show people what your worth! That way you’ll get a more loyal, as well as bigger audience.
When you finally got your blog up and running and you pumping up posts on a regular basis. Your next goal is to get it in front of as many curious eyes as possible.
One way is submitting it to as many social bookmarking sites you can find. You can also submit your blog link in your profile of various social networking sites e.g. Facebook. Writing articles for article directories with a link to your blog is also a no cost way of generating free traffic. Another is creating a signature at the end of your posts to the internet forums you visit, and also in the emails you send. You will find that there really are no boundaries when is comes to generating plenty of free traffic to your blog.
The natural next step is of course to monetize it. You want to generate some money from all the visitors you’ll be getting, and there are several ways of doing that. The most well known is probably Google AdSense. You can sign up for free and display contextual ads that your visitors hopefully will be interested in, to maximize your click through ratio.
Several websites also give you the opportunity to get paid for each blog post you make on a certain subject. Two such examples are Pay Per Post and Review Me. They will pay you a certain amount of money to review a website or a product for the owner. In a similar vein you can also place an affiliate link inside your own blog posts, where you recommend other peoples products, thereby earn a commission on every sale.
Once you’re more established you’ll also be able to offer ad space for others to buy, charging a fee for both classified and display ads. The freedom of setting your own prices will be a significant step in your blogging career
When you’ve reached the shining blogging heights, your blog thriving in success and visitors. You could actually sell it! When it is established and generate plenty of traffic and revenue, this is absolutely a viable option. Besides a change of scene could perhaps serve you well.
There you have it – profitable blogging served on a silver plate. No get out there and build your first blog!