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I cannot emphasize enough how totally unreal this is for me to share with you guys. I have always been a private person about certain things, especially money. The thing is though, I know it is so important that I share with as many people as possible how I am making a living because you guys deserve to know!
When I first started looking for alternative ways to make money, there was some serious overwhelm going on. I spent hours and hours trying to find something that I would thoroughly enjoy doing. I knew I wanted flexibility as the typical 9-5 day job just was not going to cut it for me. I love my freedom and I guard it like a mad woman.
It was time to evaluate my needs and figure out how the meet them:
- I so badly craved a way that I could I make money without my personal life being imposed on.
- I wanted to have new experiences from traveling to being able to spend more time with my pets (Zelda my German Shepherd & Ginger my Maine Coon).
- I wanted to be able to give my boyfriend the option to quit his job and pursue more of his hobbies.
- I needed financial security to help me sleep at night.
Through both Sarah and Grace’s generosity of helpful guides, I was able to learn just how possible it was to make money from blogging. I found out how much room there always is for new bloggers and just how welcoming the whole community truly is. While I took a lot of their tips to heart, there are some minor differences if you take a look at my personal journey. Here is my quick start guide.
Step 1 – Get Some Post Ideas
Create at least 30 blog posts before you start showing off your blog to people. If you have a certain niche that you want to go for, that will totally work. If you are like I was and want to hit the ground running with content that will keep bringing you viewers (and money) each season, you should go with a lifestyle blog approach. This means you talk about several topics from home improvement to travel and beauty.
The reason you are going to want to have this content at launch is so that you are able to give visitors a complete site to look at AND so you are ready to be approved by Google Adsense.
Step 2 – Sign up with SiteGround
Get your blog hosted with SiteGround. While many bloggers are happy with and will recommend you Blue Host, I personally do not feel comfortable doing so. I had a rough experience with their customer service and want you guys to start out with a great company I have had only amazing experiences with.
Depending on where you are at in your blogging journey, these are your main options.
- The StartUp plan is perfect for people with one website that are starting now
- The GrowBig plan is a great value for money offer, including the option for multiple websites and the SuperCacher that greatly improves a WordPress and Joomla website speed
- The GoGeek plan is perfect for people with e-commerce and larger sites, or more geeky development needs like staging and GIT integration
If you are brand new, like most of your are, definitely go for the Startup Plan option. It is the cheapest and will give you everything you need. The way I saw it, it was even less than one coffee a month from Starbucks. The best part is, SiteGround offers a 30 day money back guarantee program so if you change your mind, you’ll get your money back immediately!
**If you are looking to make money off of your blog, You absolutely need a host. Signing up with wordpress.com alone does not allow you to include ads on your website.**
Step 3 – Choose a Domain Name
Now that you’ve signed up for SiteGround, you get to do one of the best parts, choosing your blog’s name! : ) My recommendation is coming up with something that is easy to remember and spelled correctly. This way, it will be easy for readers to remember and come back to your site.
Step 4 – Fill out Your Information
All you’ll need to do here is fill out the necessary details that you would with any sign up.
Step 5 – Get Started With WordPress (Sign Into SiteGround)
Since SiteGround is just for your hosting and domain name, you will almost never have to login there. Where you will be accessing your actual site to edit and nurture is WordPress.
So what you will want to do now is sign into SiteGround.
Step 6 – Select WordPress Option
Once you login to your Customer Area for the first time, you will see a pop-up asking you if you want to Start a new website on your account. Select that option and click on the WordPress button.
A new section would appear where you should enter the login information for your new WordPress application. Once you are ready click on the Confirm button.
Next, choose what Enhancements you wish to add to your account – if you want to add any. When you are ready with this step – click on the Complete Setup button.
That’s it! You can now go to the front page of your site and check out the newly installed WordPress application. You can find your front page login by using an ‘Administrative URL’. This will be: “yourdomainname.com/wp-admin/. I highly recommend bookmarking this for future reference!
How to Drive Traffic and Monetize
In order to drive traffic, you are going to want to start off using one social media platform only, Pinterest. Pinterest is going to be a major traffic source for your blog and you are going to be so happy you know this tip. So make yourself an account there and start making beautiful pins. To make pins, I personally use PicMonkey and Canva.
To monetize, you will want to include ads on your website. To do this, sign up for Google Adsense. It is important that you have your website all setup at this point with some posts so that you can be approved.
After you have worked on your blog for a while and built up some traffic, try switching over to another ad company. I personally right now love and use Mediavine.
There are lots of other ways to monetize your blog too:
Affiliate Marketing-Recommending products for readers by using a special link that allows you to receive commission.
Products-Creating your own products to sell to the world like printables and guides.
Sponsorships-Working with brands on fun collaboration projects.
I personally sell products, do affiliate marketing and sponsored posts in addition to using advertisements on my blog.
Well, there you have it! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial with the basic steps I learned back when I got started blogging. If you really liked this guide, please let me know! I am totally happy to make more specific tutorials in the future! Good luck on your blog and take care. <3