How To Start a Blog: The Ultimate Guide For Beginners

Do you want to start a blog? 

Well, that’s a great idea.

But, how are you going to do that?

I know you come across this very question every time you think of starting a blog. 

We all do come across such a question whenever we want to start something new.

Starting a blog is not a tough job, but bringing it to success is a bit of a tough task.

You have a ton of options for choosing the right blogging platforms, keyword research tools, hosting, themes, traffic etc that makes your job even more tougher.

Once you end up selecting the wrong tool or service for your blog you might already have started a damage to your blog even before it's launched.

Hence, we need to plan everything by considering the future scale of success.

Here are the proven steps for starting a blog that is sustainable and profitable. 

Step 1: Select a perfect niche for your blog
Step 2: Choose a blogging platform
Step 3: Pick a domain name
Step 4: Get a web hosting account
Step 5: Starting a blog on WordPress
Step 6: Select a WordPress theme to design your blog
Step 7: Write content and promote your blog
Step 8: Get the traffic
Step 9: Build the audience
Step 10: Email Marketing
Bonus Step: Make money blogging

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We will discuss each of the steps above in a great length and understand what it really takes to start a successful blog.

I still remember, when I started my first blog, it took me almost a year to take the first step. 

Because I had no one to guide me through the process of starting a blog.

When I started my first blog, there was little to no information available on how to start a blog the right way.

Now after having years of experience at it, I just wanted to share my knowledge with others.

Blogging is like a journey, where you need to take every step carefully, think about the best path to reach the destination.

Yes, destination or goal or objective or aim, doesn’t matter whatever you name it, they are all the same.

Let’s take a simple example. 

Suppose you want to take some days off from your work and go to someplace which is completely offbeat, away from city traffic, pollution, etc. 

Of course, this place will lack most of the facilities which are available in your city. Therefore, you will have to plan everything like, travel arrangements, what things you will be carrying, travel time, arrangements for staying there, and so on.

Now if you just wake up one morning and start traveling to this place, your travel experience is going to be the worst ever.

Hence you must plan everything.

Similarly, if you want to start a blog you need to plan everything like what kind of blog you should start, blogging platform, a domain name for your blog, web hosting, designing your website, building the audience, monetization, marketing, etc.

How to start a blog? (The Ultimate Guide) #blogging #blog

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How To Start a Blog (The Beginner's Guide)

I am writing this post to share what I have learned after so many years of experience in blogging.

This post will help you to take the first steps and prepare for the future success of your blog in the meantime.

Let me inform you in advance that it is going to be a long post, but I promise you that you will be able to set up your blog and establish a substantial audience for your blog by following this post. 

So, without further ado, let's learn how to start a blog.

Step 1: Select a Perfect Niche For Your Blog

As a first step, we need to identify the niche for our blog.

I know, you must be thinking that I read it everywhere. The same old advice that everyone wants to give.

Yes, it is recommended by every big or small blogger or a digital marketing expert. 

The main reason for choosing a niche is that you need to create a focus market for your blog.

What Is the Blog Niche?

Before choosing a niche, we need to understand what is a niche.

In blogging, a niche means a specific topic that you love to write about, will be able to do so for a long time and be successful at it.

As I mentioned, a niche is a "specific topic", you will write about.

But how are you going to choose that specific topic for your blog?

You can’t just start writing about anything on your blog. 

What Does It Mean To Choose a Niche?

Everyone knows that to be successful in our business, we need to decide what service we will be offering to our customers.

The process of choosing a niche is somewhat like choosing a service area for your business.

It’s not possible to achieve success by offering whatever product/service we offer until it solves a specific problem and we can create the unmatched products or services.

I hope, it is clear now what it means to choose a niche, so let’s come back to the topic.

The Importance of a Blog Niche

Let’s take an example:

If you are thinking about starting a blog about digital marketing, you can’t just write about everything in digital marketing.

Because digital marketing is a very broad topic.

It’s an industry in itself.

If we take the above example of a digital marketing blog, the chances of success are very less.

Yes, you will get some success, but where you should be getting 10K visitors, you will be getting only 1K visitors.

The Big Truth:

I think I should share a secret with you, which almost nobody talks about.

It’s not entirely true that you won’t be successful if you write about everything in the digital marketing industry or any other industry. But if you are a beginner, you should always choose a specific topic in your industry.

People always look for someone who is an expert in his area, who can just write anything about a specific topic to solve their problem or add to their knowledge.

No, I am not saying that you are not an expert in your industry.

However, being a beginner blogger, writing about a specific topic in your industry will help you to build a long-lasting relationship with your audience.

Once people know that you are good at what you write, they trust you and will read whatever you write, you can start writing about other topics in your industry.

Let’s again go back to the digital marketing blog example:

Suppose, you start your blog in the digital marketing industry and keep writing about every topic in this area.

People who come to your blog may initially love your articles but soon they will find out that you are writing about everything in digital marketing.

Now being a beginner blogger, it will strike you as a negative point because people still don’t trust you as an expert in your industry.

Therefore, the old visitors will stop trusting you and visit your blog.

While you may be getting new visitors but the old visitors will not return.

But if you choose content marketing (a major component in digital marketing) as your starting point and keep writing about it, your visitors will slowly start trusting you and remain loyal.

Once you have built a good image in content marketing, you can start writing about other topics like SEM, SEO, Email Marketing, and so on.

As people trust you, they will remain loyal.

But always try to keep your articles mixed, if you write a couple of articles on SEM, make sure to write an article or two about content marketing as well.

That way, you will keep your old and new audience engaged, which will help you in the long run.

If you follow the above advice, starting from scratch, building a substantial audience, and expanding your blog will be so much easy.

How To Choose a Blog Niche?

Now, I need a blog niche.

Where will I find it?

Can I use a tool to identify my niche?

While some claim that they have some kind of miraculous tool that will help you to find the perfect blog niche, that’s not true.

Trust me guys there’s no tool as such.

Follow along and I will tell what you exactly need to do, to choose the perfect blog niche.

Just in case, if you already know your niche, I would still recommend you to read this section because I will also discuss the process of validating your niche.

The Easiest Way: 

Choosing a niche can be fairly easy for some and extremely difficult for others.

If you already have a passion for something you can choose it as your niche by niching it down.

For example, you love programming, you can choose web development as a starting point for your blog.

That was the easiest way of choosing a niche.

The Other Way:

Now for those who are yet to find their passion, there is no need to waste your time on soul searching.

Because I will help you find the perfect niche for you.

First things first, just clear your mind and be relaxed.

Because you are going to need complete focus for finding your Niche.

Now you need to make a list of few things. Here are those:

Things you own, i.e.

  • Gadgets, vehicles, books, appliances
  • Your daily routine
  • Your profession
  • Blogs and magazines, you love
  • Products you purchased in the last three months
  • Things you want to learn
  • Things you can't stop talking about

You must be wondering, why am I asking you to list these things. 

Because it is the process of brainstorming, which will help you to find a solution to your problem: A perfect blog niche.

Do not worry, I will also help you with the steps to validate your list. 

Therefore, it doesn’t matter whatever things you list.

If you have been following along, I am sure that you have created a pretty good list that I asked you for.

Things mentioned in that list are the potential ideas for your blog. 

The next step is to validate it. 

Here is a sample format you can use to validate your ideas:

Sr. No.

Ideas

Are you passionate about this topic?

Are there other people who want to know about this topic?

How passionate other people are about this topic?

Do you love talking about this topic?

Can you add value to other people’s knowledge by writing about this topic?

Can you earn money from this topic?

1

Idea 1

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

2

Idea 2

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

3

Idea 3

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

Your answer

List every idea you have listed and then answer each question in this form.

Choose the idea which has the most positive answers. 

So, that’s it. 

You will be able to choose the perfect topic for starting your blog.

Step 2: Choose a Blogging Platform

Choosing a blogging platform can be a daunting task for beginners.

Not only beginners but the experienced ones like me also feel it difficult to choose a thing over others, due to the availability of so
many alternatives.

Blogging platform plays an important role in the success of a blog; hence you must choose it wisely.

Here are some of the most popular blogging platforms and we are going to choose the best from these.

  1. WordPress.org
  2. Constant Contact Website Builder
  3. Squarespace
  4. WordPress.com
  5. Gator
  6. Weebly
  7. Wix
  8. Tumblr
  9. Medium

How To Choose The Best Blogging Platform?

The choice of the best blogging platform solely depends on your requirements and experience level.

However, there are several factors you need to consider before making this choice.

I do not want to make the process of choosing a blogging platform hard and time-consuming, so I will share my recommendation at the end of this section.

The most important things for a beginner blogger are cost, time and hardship.

You do not want a solution that is one of a kind but is costly and hard to learn at the same time.

Being a beginner, you should look for a solution that is easy to configure, doesn’t need you to have certain coding skills, and has a very low learning curve.

If you are just starting you do not need to reinvent the wheel.

Here are the major aspects which you need to look before selecting a blogging platform:

  • Level of expertise required
  • Learning Curve
  • Cost of configuration
  • Support and updates
  • Flexibility and room for growth
  • Plans to make money blogging

Considering all of these aspects we are going to choose the best blogging platform that suits your current and future needs for your blog.

1. WordPress.org (or WordPress Blog)

Started in 2003, the world’s most popular blogging platform, WordPress runs 35% plus of the websites online today.

Don’t confuse WordPress.org with WordPress.com, they both are different platforms.

WordPress.org is completely open-source and a free blogging platform.

It is so easy to use that you can set up your blogging website in minutes.

WordPress.org is a great blogging platform that is self-hosted, which means that you need to sign up with a web hosting provider.

Bluehost is the perfect choice for that; we will come back to Bluehost later.

By using WordPress.org you get full control over your website or blog.

You can add any feature you want or modify any feature easily.

Even a complete beginner can easily build and customize his website in no time.

The process of building a website just needs you to install a theme, customize it to your needs, and install some plugins for additional features.

It’s just not good for blogging websites but it also runs some of the major eCommerce and corporate websites today.

Millions of themes and plugins are available for you and you can even create custom themes and plugins, but that will require certain coding skills.

It is regularly updated and new features are being added with every major update.

WordPress community is so large that if you run into a problem just type your query in Google and you will get your solution easily.

2. Constant Contact Website Builder

Constant Contact is a newer entry in website building powered by artificial intelligence. You can create almost any kind of website with the Constant Contact website builder.

It has both free as well as premium plans, but of course, you need to upgrade to a premium plan for additional features.

By choosing Constant Contact website builder you get access to prebuilt website templates that you can use to create any type of website.

In addition to that, you also get access to some of the helpful tools like logo maker and stock photo library.

The constant Contact website builder also offers free domain and SSL certificate with all of their paid plans.

It is can be set up easily and quickly, though one downside that the developer ecosystem is very small.

The integration with third-party tools and plugins is also limited.

3. Squarespace

A website builder that focuses majorly on small businesses to help them make their online presence. 

By offering beautifully designed professional templates, Squarespace makes the website building process easy and quick. 

It also offers the SSL and eCommerce store features.

Squarespace plans range between $16 and $46, depending on your requirements. 

The annual plans also offer a free custom domain.

While it is a great option for the people who are not well versed with technical stuff, the third-party tool integration is not that large.

4.WordPress.com 

Automattic, a company established by the WordPress.org co-founder Matt Mullenweg, is behind the WordPress.com. 

It offers blog hosting services for the people who do not want the advanced features of open-source WordPress.

WordPress.com works on a freemium model. 

The basic plan is available for free and you can upgrade anytime to a premium plan.

They have several premium plans, which you can choose depending on your needs. 

No setup is required to run a blog on WordPress.com.

It is easy to use and manage.

It is completely free until you want to use your custom domain name; the free WordPress.com domain looks like https://website.wordpress.com

It is a good free blogging platform, but you will have limited options to add custom themes and plugins.

You don’ even own your blog, WordPress.com can terminate your account anytime if they find out that you are violating the terms of use.

The biggest issue with using WordPress.com is that you can’t run ads and monetize your blog; instead, WordPress.com will show 
their ads on your free website.

5. Gator

Gator is a drag and drop website builder offered by HostGator (a web hosting company). 

You can use it to create any kind of website.

With its quick setup, Gator enables you to customize your blog or website design easily.

It has multiple plans starting from $3.84/month and all of the plans offer Free Hosting, Domain, Free SSL, Customizable Templates, Web Analytics and 24/7/365 support.

If you want an all in one blogging platform, the Gator by HostGator is a great option.

While it’s a great all in one blog platform, even the security and backup is also managed by HostGator, it lacks some of the features like an app, theme, plugin, and extensions availability. 

It also has limited integration options for third-party tools.

6. Weebly

Weebly is another website builder that helps you create any kind of website, blog, or eCommerce store.

Like other website builders, it also supports the drag and drops functionality to customize your website.

The basic plan of Weebly is free but it doesn’t support the custom domain. 

In case you want to add a custom domain, you will need to upgrade to the premium plans.

Weebly plans start at $5 but it does not offer much in terms of features.

Also, it supports only 500MB storage, which I think is not sufficient in case you want to extend your blog later on.

7. Wix

An artificial design intelligence-powered website builder that helps you design your professional website of any kind.

Wix is a hosted platform that enables small businesses to create their online presence.

It has been around since 2006 as a platform that can be used to create a professional-looking website without zero coding skills.

The downsides of using Wix are that the free plan will have Wix branding in the domain name. 

It also runs its own ads on your free 
website. 

There are only a few third-party tool integration options available.
The biggest downside of using Wix is that it offers limited features to run a blog as compared to other platforms.

8. Medium

Medium is a community of bloggers, professionals, journalists, and experts. 

Anybody can create an account and start writing articles.

You don’t need any technical knowledge to start writing on medium. 

But while it is easy to use, you don’t get much control over your own blog.

In fact, your blog is not owned by you. 

Medium owns your blog and followers.

You don’t even get an option to add your custom domain name. 

And in case if you are thinking to monetize your blog by running ads, that’s not possible at all.

9. Tumblr

Tumblr is another blogging platform that is owned and managed by Automattic (the company behind WordPress.com).

If I say that Tumblr is a microblogging platform, I would not be wrong.

Tumblr is fairly easy to set up and use.

It is also available for free, but it will have a Tumblr domain name. You can add the premium custom domain name as well.

The features like following other blogs, re-blogging, built-in social media tools, blog videos, GIFs, audio, image, and more, makes it stand out as a microblogging platform.

While there are some great features, it also has some disadvantages.

You can’t extend your blog completely.

If you want to add additional apps then they are paid. Later if you want to move your blog to another platform, it is very difficult.

My recommendation for the Best Blogging Platform:

So that was all about the different blogging platforms available out there.

I just wanted to discuss some of the blog platforms to help you make your decision.

Though I have not included all the blogging platforms, these are the widely used platforms for blogging.

Clearly, the winner is WordPress.org.

Yes, I recommend WordPress.org.

It is not only recommended by me but almost all of the bloggers or digital marketers recommend using WordPress as a blogging platform.

Step 3: Pick a Domain Name

A domain is the identity of your blog. 

In the online world, a domain name is considered to be the name of your business.

Considering my blog name as an example, it will be easy to understand what a domain name actually is.

My blog name is eBizoPedia and has the domain name ebizopedia.com

Similarly, if you want to start your blog with the name "The Blog", you are required to register a domain name like theblog.com

Importance of The Domain Name

As I mentioned earlier, your domain name is the identity of your domain name, hence it becomes really important to choose a perfect domain name.

The domain name is what people will identify your blog with. 

It is the key element for starting a blog. 

Choosing a domain name that works for your blog plays an important role in the success of your blog. It also helps in search engine optimization. 

A good domain name can make a positive or negative impression of your blog.

A domain name is closely related to your blog that people consider it as a brand name.

How To Choose The Perfect Domain Name For Your Blog?

Registering a domain name is a daunting task because whatever generic name you select for your blog, it is already registered.

Hence you need to brainstorm some ideas and then search in the domain name registrar database if any one of these domain name ideas is available.

Here are some of the tips to choose a perfect domain name for your blog:

  1. Write down a brief description of your blog (Include industry, purpose, topic, target audience and keywords that define your blog)
  2. Create a list of potential blog names based on the blog description (at least a hundred, try to create the combination of 2 words)
  3. Keep the blog name ideas brandable
  4. Keep them shorter
  5. Make sure they are easy to pronounce and type
  6. Avoid any special characters and numbers
  7. Try to include the keywords that define your blog

Once you have listed all the potential domain name ideas, go to a domain registrar and try to validate and register a domain. 

I recommend using Bluehost for the same as they offer free domain name registration for one year with all of their hosting plans.

Step 4: Get a Web Hosting Account

Web hosting provides the building blocks for a website.

Your website resources are saved on a virtual computer connected to the internet 24/7/365.

Whenever someone enters your domain name in the browser or clicks on your website link, the relevant website resources are processed and transferred to the user’s web browser.

Your web hosting company manages everything related to security, maintenance, backups, and performance tasks.

Sometimes it includes email hosting as well.

Of course, these features depend on the hosting plan purchased by you.

Choosing the best web hosting provider can be a daunting task due to the availability of so many hosting providers from basic web hosting to cloud hosting.

Luckily, you have me so I will recommend the best hosting provider for your blog.

Being beginner, you don’t need many resources or features to start your blog.

One of the basic principles of running a blog website is that you don’t buy the resources that you don’t need.

Do not worry if you want to extend your blog later, you can do that anytime you want.

However, the first step is to get started and you do not need anything more than the basic web hosting to launch your blog.

Bluehost is recommended by WordPress since 2005 and it is even recommended by almost 80% of the bloggers and digital marketers.

The main reasons behind recommending Bluehost are the unmatched features, free domain registration, uptime, award-winning support, and cost-effectiveness.

Let’s begin setting up Bluehost web hosting.

If you want to follow along, just open Bluehost.com in a separate window.

Click here to get a special discount on Bluehost.com.

On the homepage of the Bluehost website, the first thing you need to do is click on the Get Started Button. 

Bluehost Get Started

On the next page, you have to select a hosting plan that best suits your requirements.

I will go with the basic plan as it covers everything that I need to host my blog.

How to start a blog - Bluehost pricing plans

After that, you will bed asked to create a domain name or enter the existing one.

Here you need to enter the names that you listed in the previous step or if you already own one you can enter that one.

Once you have found your desired domain name you can proceed with the rest of the steps.

How to start a blog - Blluehost setup a domain name

Now on the next screen, you need to enter your account information and select a hosting plan duration.

Also, you have the option to choose between the several package extras, but that will be at the added cost.

So, for now, you can uncheck them and proceed with the payment details.

Once you have filled all the mandatory fields, you can click on submit.

How to start a blog - Bluehost submit the information

Congratulations! You have your hosting account now.

We will use this account to install WordPress and configure your blogging website.

If you have followed along and did everything as I recommended, WordPress will be installed automatically by Bluehost. 

All you have to do is now, configure your WordPress installation to your requirements.

After submitting the package information and payment details, you will be redirected to secure your hosting account with a strong password.

Once, you do that, you will login to your WordPress dashboard.

In the next few steps, you will be prompted to configure the different aspects of your website.

First of all, you will be asked to select a WordPress theme. 

All the themes available here are free and lack many features that you will be needing to design a professional blog website.

How To Start a Blog - Bluehost Select a WordPress theme

I have a detailed discussion around why not choose free WordPress themes. 

You can read it here: How Much Does It Cost To Start a Blog? (It’s Less Than What You Think)

Once you have selected a theme, just click on the Start Building button.

It is going to take some time, so be patient.

After completing this step, Bluehost will take you to your WordPress dashboard where you need to configure a few other things.

In the next step, you will be asked if it is going to be a business or personal website. Select whatever you want it does not really matter.

How to start a blog - Bluehost blog home page

After doing that, you will be asked for a Site Title and Description.

In the Site, Title field add your blog name and in the description field, add a brief description of your blog.

How To Start a Blog - Bluehost Enter the site name and site description

Do not worry, if you are not sure what to write. 

You can change it anytime later, enter whatever you want, and change it at a later time. 

Once you are done with that you will be asked if you want to add blog articles to your website.

Yes, of course, that’s why you are starting your website.

For the next couple of options, just select whatever you want as they are not much important.

Now your website is ready to start blogging.

But before that make sure to verify the email address that you have registered with Bluehost.

You must have received a verification email from them.

Congratulations.! You just setup your first ever blog!

Step 5: Installing a WordPress Theme

Now your WordPress installation is ready to be used to start your blog website.

However, it is really important to install a good theme, which will help you design a professional website, configure your website for SEO and update the content as you like.

Although there are so many free themes available, I would not recommend them as they are not worth it.

As I mentioned earlier, you can read another post where I have discussed why you shouldn’t use a free theme for your blog.

Related: How Much Does It Cost To Start a Blog? (It’s Less Than What You Think)

The choice is yours, it’s just what I would recommend.

The WordPress theme which I would recommend is the Shapeshift theme from Thrive Themes.

I am recommended this theme because I use it and trust me it’s a great theme.

Take a look around this blog and decide whether it's the best fit for your own blog or not.

All the themes, plugins, or tools I recommend are used by me on my websites.

I do not recommend something which I have never used.

I have a complete review of thrive themes, which you can read here and make up your mind.
https://ebizopedia.com/thrivethemes-review/

Fortunately, I have managed to get some discount for the people who use my link to sign up for thrive themes.

Trust me, Thrive Themes are the must to have resource if you want to be successful as a blogger.

By becoming a Thrive member you will get access to not only to a particular theme but everything offered by thrive themes.

If you plan to use thrive themes, you can follow the installation steps shared by them and you will be good to go.

You can use the thrive architect page builder or ready-made templates to design your website.

It is going to be really easy.

You don’t even need any coding skills to design your website with thrive themes.

Additional Steps:

Before starting to post the articles, you need to few more things which are important for the SEO perspective.

The first thing that you need to do is change your permalink structure by visiting Settings>>Permalinks.

How to start a blog - setup permalink

Under common settings select Post name and click on save changes.

After that, you need to install an SSL certificate. Without an SSL certificate, the web browser will show not secure message in the address bar.

Luckily Bluehost provides the SSL for free and in case if it is already installed on your website then you do not need to do anything.

Just in case if it is not installed on the website, you can install a free plugin that will handle it for you.

In your WordPress dashboard go to Plugins>>Add New.

How to start a blog - add new plugin

On the next page search for Really Simple SSL.

Once you find it, click on Install Now, and after it is installed click on Activate link.

How To Start a Blog - simple SSL

Once it is activated just click on Go Ahead, activate SSL! and it will handle the rest.

How to start a blog - activate simple SSL

You may get logged out of your dashboard.

Just log in again and now you can start posting the articles on your website.

Step 6: Starting a Blog On WordPress

Everything is set up to start your blog.

You just need to add the content to your website now.

In your WordPress dashboard, if you visit the Posts section, you can create, edit, or delete your posts.

Similarly, if you want to create, edit, or delete any page you need to visit the Pages section in your dashboard.

For an online website, you must create an About, Contact, Privacy Policy, and Disclaimer page.

These pages help your visitors to know about you, your blog, profession, what your blog generally is, what kind of data you collect, if you have affiliate links on your website, and legal guidelines for using your website.

These pages also help in SEO as the search engine checks the credibility of your website if you have the links to these pages on your website.

For now, we are going to create a new page, so let’s begin.

Create a Page

Creating a new page is simple and easy, go to the Pages section and click on Add New.

How to start a blog - add new page

You are now in the editor, where you can name your page and add content.

Add a page title and content.

If you want to create a page using a page builder, you can follow its documentation for the same.

How to start a blog - add new page block editor

You about the page must include the information about your blog, yourself, and why you started your blog. 

I am not restricting you, add anything about you.

Keep it informative and stay true as it will help you to create trust and connection with your visitors.

You can add other pages in the same way.

Create a Post

Now its time to create your first blog post. 

So do some research and find out what will work for you.

Do some keyword research or competitor research before writing.

Trust me it will help you in the long run.

Jaaxy, Semrush, and KWFinder are some of the best tools for keyword and competitor research.

Now let’s create your first post. 

Go to the Posts section and click on the Add New button. 

How to start a blog - WordPress add new post

The user interface is exactly what you saw on the Pages section, so it won’t be a problem while creating the posts.

Add a compelling post title, include the focus keyword in it, write the content, add some images, and publish it. 

You have your first blog post live now.

So that was about creating a blog post. 

As you are running your blog website now, you need some additional tools to help you grow.

Some of these tools are free and some are premium. 

Do not worry about the cost, if you do everything right you will make much more than what you spend on these tools.

I am going to discuss the most important ones, if you want additional tools, you can do some research and use them.

Install The Important Plugins

The first tool that you need is called Yoast SEO.

It is a WordPress plugin that helps you a lot for search engine optimization.

Yoast SEO has both free and premium versions, you can install it for free and if you like It and need additional features, upgrade it.

It also has so many tutorials on its website, so you can learn easily how to use it.

How to start a blog - WordPress Yoast SEO plugin

Another great SEO plugin that is rapidly becoming popular is RankMath.

It's an awesome plugin that offers many SEO features for free that comes as a premium in other tools like Yoast SEO or All In One SEO.

It's totally up to you which plugin you want to use for your site.

Other tools are for monitoring and traffic insights which let you know how your website is performing on search engines. 

Both the tools are from Google and they are free.

Google Analytics and Google Search Console are the tools I am talking about. 

How to start a blog - WordPress Google Search Console

Use your Gmail account to sign up. 

Everything is self-explanatory throughout the sign-up process, so I am not going to discuss more of it.

There are many more such essential plugins like W3 Total Cache, JetPack, WooCommerce so on and so forth that you should consider installing depending upon your requirements.

That’s how you can start blogging and extend what you learn on the way.

Now it’s time to write more content and promote it.

Step 7: Write Content That Brings Traffic

You already know how to create the posts, but don’t know everything. Now I am going to explain the art of publishing the content to a blog and then how to promote it.

How to create posts that bring traffic?

  • Understand your audience
  • Create a content plan
  • Invest time in creating valuable content
  • Create the cornerstone content
  • Write the content that is easy to ready, add some fun to it
  • Always write content that adds to readers’ knowledge or solve a problem
  • Do not write the posts that include content which you are not expert at
  • Keep it simple
  • Develop a writing tone that lets people know you are an expert
  • Research what people are looking for and how your competitors are serving it
  • Write compelling headings and entry content
  • Create compelling meta descriptions for your posts
  • Optimize your content for Search Engines
  • Add links to other valuable websites. It will help you in search engine rankings
  • Be true to your audience
  • Add relevant images and videos in your posts
  • Format your blog posts properly
  • Create sections within your posts.
  • Separate your content with headings and subheading
  • Close your post with some motivational punch
  • Add a call to action button
  • Publish posts frequently

Blogging is not just writing hundreds of posts.

These posts have to framed professionally.

If you have written a good article that has knowledge and value but is not framed properly and lacks basic aspects of a blog post, people will not come to your blog.

People love the content that is easing to eyes, looks professional and enhances their knowledge.

Writing isn’t the difficult part of blogging but writing the curated content is the difficult part.

Creating a good blog post takes a good amount of time. 

It doesn’t matter how fast you type or how good you are at generating new ideas. 

Crafting a good blog post based on your ideas can take several days or even a couple of weeks. 

What matters most is how well you have planned your post. Because that is what is going to pay you off.

Step 8: Promote Your Blog and Get the traffic

Till now you must have understood what it takes to write a good blog post.

It is time to find it how to promote your blog and get traffic to your website.

You can’t be just sitting posting the articles and doing nothing to generate traffic. 

Nobody is going to visit your website until they know that it exists and it has the content that can help someone or maybe guide them.

A blog is like that old book in a library, that people do not know exists until somebody tells them about it.

How can you promote your blog though? 

It’s maybe somewhat difficult but not impossible. 

So, I am here to tell you about the ways that you can use to promote your blog.

  1. Search Engine Optimization
  2. Social Media Marketing
  3. Content Curation
  4. Content Aggregation
    Build Relationships With Successful Bloggers
  5. Guest Blogging
  6. Paid Marketing

Some terms here must be unknown to you.

It was the case with me.

In fact, they didn’t even exist when I started blogging.

Slowly the whole blogging industry started booming and different techniques were introduced.

But nobody was sure how to use them.

It was a hit and trial situation.

Most of the successful bloggers tried every one of them and after some struggle adopted these techniques.

Do not worry, for your convenience I will share how to use them.

1. Search Engine Optimization

That seems like a technical thing.

Oh yeah, it is, to some extent but it is not a difficult task.

What is the meaning of Search Engine Optimization or SEO?

Search Engine Optimization is the process of generating free traffic from organic search results on search engines like Google or Bing.

In this section, I will share what technical aspects of your website need to be optimized.

Web Hosting:

It is the most important aspect of technical SEO as your website performance depends on your host.

If your website keeps crashing or has a slow server response then people are going to leave your website.

Nobody wants to visit a slow website.

Luckily, Bluehost doesn’t have such issues, so do not worry.

But if in case if you have selected other hosting provider, please make sure that they do not have these problems.

Speed Optimization:

Like I mentioned earlier, nobody wants to visit a lagging website.

Slow website speed isn’t always an issue with your hosting provider.

Sometimes there are issues with your website as well if you have so many resources like images or illustrations or maybe multiple stylesheets or JavaScript files.

Always use compressed images optimized for websites and minified CSS or JavaScript files.

You must be worried that how can you achieve that.

You don’t need to be a technical ninja for that.

There are so many tools available online, which you can use.

Image Compressor is a great tool to compress your images before uploading them to WordPress.

Additionally, you can install a WordPress plugin to further optimize them.

Smush is a really good plugin for that.

I would also recommend you to use a caching plugin that helps to optimize your website speed.

There are several options but I would recommend using WP Fastest Cache or W3 Total Cache.

The good thing about these caching plugins is that they can even minify your CSS and JavaScript.

But first, try it in a testing environment then minify your live CSS and JavaScript files as it could also break your website.

WordPress Security:

WordPress is an open source and it powers more than 35% website today.

Due to this, hackers are always trying to hack it.

Therefore, you need to secure your website from hacking attacks.

Luckily Bluehost already has a robust security structure on their servers so that won’t be a problem.

And just in case if you don’t have Bluehost or just want an extra layer of security, you could use WordPress security plugins like Wordfence, Sucuri, Login No Captcha reCaptcha etc.

WordPress Theme:

I have already discussed WordPress theme earlier in this post.

So, you know why you should choose a premium theme over a free theme.

A WordPress theme also has some important aspects like security, speed, and SEO.

Hence, I would recommend you to choose wisely and not just for the sake of choosing it.

If you haven’t already check out my post where I explain why not choose a free theme.

Search Engine Indexing:

To rank your website on Search Engines like Google or Bing, it is important that it is being crawled and indexed by them.

Search engines do that by looking at your Robots.txt and Sitemap file.

If you have installed the Yoast SEO or any other SEO plugin and have configured it, both these files will be automatically handled by that.

Links:

Links are so much important from the technical SEO perspective as Google ranks your website based on the quality of these links.

Now there is a different kinds of links that you need to include on your web pages.

Internal links:  When you create a new post make sure that you link them to the posts or pages already on your website.

You must have both incoming and outgoing internal links on your website.

But please they must be relevant. Don’t just include them for the sake of including them.

External Links: While internal links are the links that you can get from existing posts or pages on your website, external links are those which you use to refer to pages or posts on other websites.

When you write you must be using the content from some pages on other websites or maybe you are referring to something that exists on other websites.

You can use the links to those pages or websites on your posts or pages.

Also, make sure that you let the owner know that you have referred to them in your post.

You might get linked by them as well, which is good for your website.

Broken Links: Trust me you do not want this type of links on your website.

Why am I talking about them? Because they exist on every website at some point.

Internal or External links don’t stay forever.

Sometimes the URLs get changed, or posts are being deleted or something else.

Hence these links become broken links.

Always try to update any broken links on your website.

Redirection: At times we have to change some links or URLs on our webpages.

Either WordPress creates redirects or we use some kind of plugins to do that.

But it is not the recommended way.

Always try to change the links or URLs manually.

2. Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing is a great source for generating traffic to your website.

People are already using it and you just need to create your social media pages or you can even use your personal social media profile.

Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit, Pinterest, etc. have millions of users and you can get some them to visit your website with the help of social media marketing.

Whenever you create a new post, make a habit to publish it to your social media handles as well. 

Not only the new posts but if you have some old posts republish them and share them as well.

There are a great many plugins available, do some research and pick what is suitable for your needs and budget.

You can even join Facebook groups, where you can make comments to someone else’s queries. 

Make sure to share your link as well in the comments followed relevant content.

3. Quora.com

Quora is an online community where people post questions and answers.

Trust me it is a great resource for generating traffic to your website.

You just need to search for the relevant questions, answer them, and leave a link to the relevant posts on your website. 

But you need to be careful. 

You can’t just spam every question with your links.

Only answer the questions that you think, you are capable to answer or you have published a relevant post on your website.

Quora expects that you post the genuine answer and not just some generic answer followed by a link.

4. Guest Blogging

Guest blogging is the process of publishing the post to someone else’s website to promote your own website.

Guest blogging is a good resource for building traffic. 

There are millions of websites online and you can definitely find a few which allow you to write a guest post.

Similarly, you can also invite someone to write the guest post on your website. 

If you do the guest blogging on well reputed and trusted sites, chances are that you can get a good amount of traffic.

5. Paid Marketing

The process of directly targeting visitors or customers based on their interests through advertisements is knows as paid marketing.

Almost all of the social media platforms and search engines have paid marketing plans. 

You can use the power of SEM and SMM to generate traffic to your website.

Simply set your goals, identify your audience, and select the platforms to use for promotion. 

You may want to hire a professional for the same.

Step 9: Grow Traffic And Build the Audience

I am assuming if you have been following along, you must have been able to get some traffic to your website.

But how to grow your blog audience?

Well, I am going to share the tips for Growing your traffic and building your own audience.

  • Publish the content that people want to read (Keyword Research can be handy for this)
  • Publish the posts on the latest trends in your industry
  • Write newsworthy content
  • Always try to find popular content using tools like BuzzSumo
  • Research the keywords your competitors are ranking for (Semrush or Jaxxy can become handy)
  • Encourage social sharing on your website
  • Add limited social media sharing buttons
  • If you don’t get many shares, then don’t show the numbers on your website
  • Add images sharing to boost your social media share
  • Always promote your posts/blog on social media platforms
  • Use online forums and communities to promote your blog

Make a long-lasting relationship with your visitors and build your own fanbase.

  • Create a great User Experience design on your website
  • Let people know who your blog is for and how can it help them
  • Keep your navigation menu simple and clean
  • Remove unnecessary CTA buttons
  • One more aspect of your blog to improve
  • Encourage your audience to subscribe to your newsletters
  • Offer free resources in exchange for email addresses
  • Make the subscription process easy
  • Create landing pages for higher conversions
  • Make your audience to follow your blog on social networks
  • Add a social media buttons to your confirmation page
  • Send welcome emails to your subscribers
  • Create special emails for your automated responder sequence
  • Make RSS subscription easy (it still works)
  • Try to engage with your audience regularly
  • Be accessible to your audience
  • Respond to your readers when they write through emails, contact forms or comments
  • Also, try to involve your readers in content once in a while

Step 10: Email Marketing

If you want to grow and build your own audience, then you should build your email lists.

You can build your email list by adding a subscription form to your website.

To make a subscription form effective, try to offer something for free and put this form before showing the download link.

An email list is the collection of email addresses which you get from people who:

Subscribed for updates on latest posts on your blog
Subscribed for your newsletter
‘Opted-in’ to receive some kind of free product or service
Purchased something from you and opted-in for future updates


These people have already given you permission to keep and use their email for future contact.

Major Reasons To Build an Email List

  1. Higher ROI than other marketing channels
  2. It is more likely that you get a click-through from an email than from a tweet or Facebook post
  3. Your email subscribers are loyal and they are more likely to share your content
  4. Emails are highly targeted
  5. It will be a lifelong blogging asset
  6. There are over 6 billion email accounts worldwide and it's growing each day

What Do You Need To Build an Email List?

You don’t need to do much in order to build an email list. This process is simple and easy that you need only a few things.

  1. A website or a landing page or a blog
  2. Email marketing service provider
  3. Opt-in or sign up forms

That was just an overview of what you need to build an email list.

Let’s discuss this in detail now.

You already have a website and you just need to work on rest two things.

Choosing an Email Marketing Service Provider

There are several email marketing service providers who boast about providing unmatched features.

Hence it becomes important that you research well and choose the best one suiting your personal needs.

At eBizoPedia, I use GetResponse which is a great option for email marketing.

Read more about the GetResponse features, cost and full review here:

GetResponse Review 2020: GetResponse Features, Free-Trial & Pricing

Just in case if you want to know about other email marketing tools as well, you can read complete reviews here:

I hope you will be able to choose the best suitable tool for your requirements by going through these reviews.

How To Grow Your Email List?

Using an email marketing tool and growing the subscriber base are completely different things.

Here are a few tips to grow your email list.

Offer Free Resources (Lead Magnet):

Nobody subscribes to an email list without a reason.

There must be some incentive for people which will make them enter their email address in the subscription form. 

Such incentives are known as lead magnets in the digital marketing industry.

But to get converted, these lead magnets need to be well planned. It should be beneficial for both parties. 

If people are not getting something in return, they won’t give you their email addresses.

Similarly, if you are creating these lead magnets without any specific goal then it is not going to pay off.

Other major factors that you need to consider before creating the lead magnets are Solution and Usefulness.

It doesn’t matter whatever incentive you are offering to your visitors; it must solve a specific problem for your readers. Not only that it must also be useful to them.

If your lead magnets are missing these factors then I am afraid they are not going to work.

You can offer ebooks, videos, tutorials, checklists etc. as lead magnets.

Add Conversion-focused Opt-in Forms:

An average internet user spends less than 15 seconds on your website. 

Interestingly these users are more than 50% users who will come to your website.

Therefore, you get that short time of 15 seconds to convert these users into subscribers by using the so-called opt-in forms.

But a simple opt-in form won’t work you will have to create conversion-focused forms to make people subscribe to you. 

Do you know that people spend 80% of their time above the fold on your blog looking for information?

Hence you must try to put an opt-in form there.

You have the option to leverage sidebar widgets or header banners. 

I recommend that you make your lead magnet a limited time offer. You can show some kind of countdown.

Other things which matter for converting opt-in forms are what colors and fonts you use, does your website has a great user experience?

If you have taken a Thrive Membership, luckily you will have Thrive Leads in your closet. 

Trust me it is a great tool for adding opt-in forms that coverts.

Use Landing Pages:

What are landing pages exactly? 

These are the pages designed with one specific goal that is conversion. 

There is no other purpose for these pages than converting your lead magnets into leads.

Landing pages are far more sophisticated and planned pages than opt-in forms. 

Unlike opt-in forms, you don’t place a landing page on a post or existing page, but you create an additional page with one specific goal.

Just keep your landing page simple and compelling; it will do the rest.

Thrive Themes already gives you the ability to create landing pages with Thrive Architect.

You can even use ready-made professional-looking landing pages and fill in your information.

Just in case if you are not using Thrive Themes, have a look at some of the great landing page builders.

Email marketing is really a great technique for growing and building an audience for your blog. 

Just subscribe to one of the email marketing tools and you can build a long-lasting asset for your blog.

Bonus Step: Make money blogging

There several ways of making money with your blog. 

But not all of them are great. 

So now I am going to explain the most widely used ways of making money with a blog.

1. Google AdSense

Running ads with Google AdSense is a great start for a blogger. You may be considering other ways to earn money but this is one of the best ways to earn money.

Of course, you won’t be able to earn much if you don’t have decent traffic, but it may be able to fulfill some of your hosting and tools cost. 

2. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is another great way of making money. In fact, every blogger is using this to monetize his or her blog.

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning money by promoting someone else’s products or services.

I have a complete post which you can read to know What Is Affiliate Marketing And How Does It Work?

3. Sponsored Posts

Sponsored posts are the posts that a blogger is paid to publish on his website other websites, companies, and brands.

This kind of post is related to that website's topic.

These posts can either be written by the website owner or by the sponsoring brand itself. 

In order to get the businesses to sponsor posts on your website, you will have to be a well-performing blogger.

You can charge such companies on the basis of the kind of activity you need to perform for these posts. 

If you are just renting out some space on your website, you will have to charge less. 

However, in case you are writing and publishing the post on your own and also renting out your website space then you will be paid higher.

Sponsored posts are generally reviewing, offers, a summary of offers, product announcements, videos, and infographics.

4. Sell Your Own Products/Services

Once you have learned about your audience and know what they want, you can create your own services or products.

It’s up to you how you want to sell them, but I would recommend you keep them both free and premium. 

If you have a digital product then you can keep the basic features for free and sell advanced features.

Just in case if someone is not buying your product, he will definitely want to use your free product. 

In this way, you can collect his email address for growing your email list. 

It might also happen that if he likes your free product then he can even buy the premium version.

You can even create eBooks and sell them on your website.

As long as your product or service is able to fulfill someone’s needs it will get sold.

But for that, you will have to first generate the traffic to your website.

5. Membership Programs

You must have come across several membership websites, for example learning websites.

They charge a certain amount per month to offer a certain number of courses.

Similarly, you can also create some kind of membership program where you can provide services to both free and paid customers; some basic services for non-paying members, and basic and advanced services for paying customers.

This way you are able to engage with both types of members and keep them loyal to your website or platform.

Final Thoughts

The process to start a blog can be a daunting task.

You will have to handle everything from planning to launch, there are several ways.

In addition to that, you also have to choose the right resources and tools.

By considering all that, I came up with this post on how to start a blog.

Through this post, I have tried to share everything that I have learned in my career as a blogger.

In case if I have missed any important step or tool, please let me know in the comments section.

I hope you will be able to start your blog by following these steps. 

Just in case if you face any issue, please let me know so that I can help you.

Click the button below and discover the process to create a blog that generates consistent revenue every month.

Thanks for being patient and going through this long tutorial!

Happy Blogging! 🙂


About the author 

Hardik Raval

Hardik is passionate about helping people launch their own online business. He loves to talk about online business ideas, affiliate marketing tools, tips and other sources of residual income available on the internet.


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