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So, are YOU ready to start making money?
Have the freedom to watch every one of your baby’s milestones?
Have the means to travel around the world?
Who wouldn’t love to quit their 9-5 job and have the freedom to make your schedule? I know I did! I worked a corporate job for almost 10 years, and I was so tired of it! I’ll never forget sitting behind my computer, 38weeks pregnant, and wondering how in the world I was going to return after maternity leave.
After years of trying to conceive, I was weeks away from meeting my precious miracle and I couldn’t fathom the thought of leaving her at daycare at three months.
I knew there had to be something I could do to make income online.
I remained optimistic and turned to Pinterest! I came across a blog post written by a woman who claims she earns over $100,000 a month. I almost laughed when I read that, thinking how scammy that sounded.
I continued to come across a handful of blog posts claiming the same thing and decided to do a little more research.
Come to find out, these bloggers were making money by monetizing their blog. It was as if a light bulb went off on my head.
‘That’s how I’ll do it! I will start a blog now, and start making money from home!’
I have always enjoyed reading blogs, but I didn’t once think I could do it. Is it really possible to make money from home? Could this be the gateway to my dream life?
I jumped in with both feet and gave it a try!
BONUS: Sign-up on my sidebar to receive a free step-by-step guide on how to start your blog PLUS a month’s worth of blog post ideas!
Blogging is NOT easy! I know what you’re thinking- ‘Ashley, I’m reading your post to get help on starting a blog. Why are you telling me this?’
I’m here to tell you that blogging is NOT easy, but it is SO worth it. The list of pros outweighs the list of cons by a long shot.
As a matter of fact, I’ve put together the top five reasons why I believe you should start a blog today.
- You will live a more intentional life. Having a blog doesn’t mean you pick a topic to write about, publish it and except for people to love your content. I personally enjoy reading blog posts that have an impact on my life. Having a blog allows you to live more intentionally by creating content that will change someone’s life. Whether you’re writing about the tips you followed to beat postpartum anxiety, or sharing your story on how you got out of debt– you start to enjoy the feeling of helping other people solve an issue, and you care about what your readers want.
- You’ll meet a lot of new people. Being a stay at home mom means I have no adult interaction until my husband gets home. I love knowing that I get to see my baby girl every day, but you do start to get a little lonely (especially when she is napping). Blogging has allowed me to be a part of a great community of other bloggers making a living as a stay at home mom, as well!
- You’ll learn things you didn’t ever think you could do. When I first started blogging, I had NO clue what needed to be done to get my website up and running. I always thought it took so much to make a site look professional; it does take a little time to get it running the way you want, but it’s not as hard as I thought. I’ve learned SO much since starting a blog! I have even learned a little coding!
- It’s not as expensive as you think. Seriously, I thought it would cost me an arm and a leg to start a blog, but once I looked into it I found that the upfront cost is very minimal! Almost every blog post I’d read about starting a blog recommended Bluehost. After looking into their services, I decided to give it a try at ONLY $3.95/month! WOW! That’s less than $40/year!
- You decide what kind of life you want. Does the thought of not returning to a corporate job and not dealing with the 9-5 grind intrigue you? Or what about having the ability to travel the world with your family and live life the fullest? Having a monetized blog means you are able to travel knowing you have passive income coming in. As long as you have internet service, you can work from anywhere!
Please note that having a blog has been a life-changer for me, but it does take a lot of hard work to get it going. You will have to put in the hours to get traction, but once you’ve figured out what works to monetize your blog- you’ll be smooth sailing!
One of my biggest pieces of advice is to NOT GIVE UP!
Before I give you step-by-step instructions on how to start a blog, I’d like to share a few tips on how to have a successful blog.
COME UP WITH A PLAN
Once you’ve completed all of the techy stuff, it’s time to get your content out there.
What kind of content do you want to share? How will you grow your email list? How will you market your blog/products?
It all sounds overwhelming, but that’s why you need to sit down and come up with a plan before you even publish your first post. I sat down with a piece of paper and pen, wrote down all of the ideas and planned out what kind of content I would be sharing.
If you’re wanting to monetize your blog, this is the big picture of how you’re going to make money.
Content > Value > Traffic > Followers > Income
CARVE OUT TIME
You will be spending a lot of time, in the beginning, putting your website together and planning what content you will be sharing. Once you feel like your website is complete, focus on writing content and marketing.
If you’re planning on making your blog your full-time job, you can easily fall into the workaholic trap. It’s so easy to pull out your laptop anywhere and everywhere, but you’ll have to come up with a routine that fits your lifestyle. This goes hand in hand with the previous tip; carve out time out of your day to work on the blog, but don’t forget to focus on you and your family, as well.
BUILD AND TAKE CARE OF YOUR EMAIL LIST FROM DAY ONE
Without an email list, your blog will not thrive.
You can have a great following on Pinterest or any platform, but you want to have readers coming back to your blog.
How many times have you come across a pin that directs you to a blog you enjoyed reading, you forget to save the pin and now you’ve lost the URL to the blog you wanted to keep up with?
Build your email list to keep your loyal subscribers updated on when you have new blog posts published!
FOCUS ON ONE THING AT A TIME
When I first started blogging, I had SO many things I wanted to do at once. I stayed up long nights working on my blog; I could have made things so much easier on myself if I had just written down all I wanted to do and worked on them one at a time. In the beginning of my blogging journey, I kid you not, I was working on three blog posts at one time.
I’m not necessarily telling you to niche down, but don’t rush into having ten posts up in one week. It just isn’t feasible to put out great content in a short amount of time, and it’s not healthy.
POSTING MORE DOESN’T MEAN MORE FOLLOWERS
This goes hand in hand with my previous tip. Just because you put out ten posts in one week doesn’t mean you’re putting out content with value. This is one of those cases where less=more.
You could have 2 blog posts on your blog, but if you’ve gone above and beyond to provide very useful content, you will get loyal subscribers.
Really take the time to create content with value; proofread, re-read, put effort into it!
IT WILL TAKE TIME TO MAKE MONEY
You probably don’t want to hear this, but what kind of blogger would I be if I promised you would be bringing in $4,000 in your first month? I’ve come across so many blogs where the creator is offering a course promising the world, and I’m just like….really?
It takes time, but again, be patient and it will pay off.
CONSISTENCY is key!
FORMAT YOUR CONTENT FOR YOUR READER’S EXPERIENCE
How many times have you clicked on a blog post and it looked like one big paragraph? I can’t seem to focus on actually reading the content because it feels like I’m not ever going to finish it!
Make sure to use headlines, short paragraphs and add an image or two between paragraphs.
CTA IS A MUST!
Call To Action- You want to make sure you’re drawing your readers to your post. This is more so for your headline and for your Pinterest pins. You’re helping to ‘solve a problem,’ so make sure you say that.
If you wrote a post about how you got out of debt and your headline reads ‘save money,’ you may get a few views. However, if your headline reads ‘What I did to get out of debt,’ you’re more than likely to leave them guessing what you did and you’ve gained a reader.
I could write a whole blog post on tips I have for someone wanting to start a blog, but one of my biggest tips is- You need to love what you do if you want this blog to work; passion is so important.
You need to be willing to work for free while your blog is getting traction. You’re going to need to give help to get help. You will need to interact with others, join blogging communities. You can’t just put up posts and except to be a millionaire.
Focus on putting effort into your creations and be passionate about what you do. Trust me, your readers will pick up on you wanting to sale something rather than you trying to genuinely share your experience and help.
If this sounds like something you can’t see yourself doing, then it’s probably best that you don’t invest time and money on getting started.
CHOOSE A NICHE, BUT DON’T BE AFRAID TO CHANGE IT UP IF IT ISN’T WORKING FOR YOU
You’re probably going to think I’m contradicting myself when I say that you want to write what your readers want if you want to have a successful monetized blog. Yes, you want to be passionate about what you do, but you may need to learn a new skill or do some research on a new niche if the niche you’ve chosen isn’t popular.
Here is a list of the top 8 niches for 2019:
- How to make money
- Health and Fitness
- Parenting/ Mom blogs
Keep in mind you want to make sure the name you chose does not focus on one niche if you’ll be focusing on more than one on your website.
Site speed DOES matter
If you’re considering starting a blog, and you’re thinking of going with a certain web hosting service just because they’re offering you a $1/month subscription- think again!
Always keep in mind- site speed does matter! If you’re sitting at home and reading a blog post, do you really want to be waiting for a post to load? I know I don’t like to wait! You want to make sure your site speed is less than 3 seconds or you will lose your readers.
Right now my speed is 2 seconds and I chose Bluehost. I haven’t had any issues with my site speed or any website crashes!
What is Bluehost, you ask?
To get a blog up and running, just think- you will need a blogging platform + hosting.
If that still sounds foreign to you (as it did for me!), you’ll need something like WordPress + Bluehost.
WordPress actually puts your words into a blog form.
Bluehost is a web hosting service that makes your blog live on the internet.
With other web hosting services, you would typically purchase the blogging platform separately. With Bluehost, WordPress is included, absolutely free! That’s right- FREE!
Wanna know what else is free?
- There are so many websites trying to charge an arm and a leg for a domain name (the website name), and this is totally free with Bluehost!
- SSL Certificate- this is what keeps your website secure. Notice the little lock on the top of my page, and that my website starts with ‘https?’ Yep, that alone shows that whoever is purchasing from my website doesn’t have to worry about their information getting stolen by slick hackers. By the way- most affiliates WILL NOT allow you to sell their products if your website isn’t secure.
- Around the clock support. They even have a live chat option; I love this!
How cool is that? I’m all for saving money!
When I first decided to start a blog, it just seemed like there was so much I needed to do. For a minute there, I thought- ‘maybe I shouldn’t do this. I’ll just go back to my corporate job.’
Then, I heard that little voice in my head- ‘a year from now, I will be wishing I had started today.’
I went ahead and signed up; I couldn’t believe how easy it was to set up, and suddenly I had so many ideas to write about!
Once I installed WordPress, and put my plan together, I did some research on how I would be able to make it my full-time job. I looked up ways to monetize my website, and these are the top three ways I came up with:
- Affiliate Marketing
- Online products- eBooks/ printables.
REASONS TO START A BLOG WITH BLUEHOST TODAY
- Their website is very user-friendly for sign-up
- Their subscription includes a free Domain name
- It also includes WordPress!
- 24/7 Technical support experts ready to help
- Free SSL Certificate-you’ll definitely need this to monetize your blog!
- Very fast site-speed!- Remember, no more than 3 seconds!
- The sign-up amount is very affordable! No need to pay for hosting + Domain+blogging platform when it all comes together in one bundle with Bluehost!
You won’t believe how simple it is to get started, but just to prove it to you, I decided to include step-by-step instructions below. No need to go searching the internet on how to set up your blog when I can provide them to you, absolutely free. 🙂
I have had zero issues with their hosting services and I have heard nothing but good things from other bloggers using Bluehost. Their customer service agents are so helpful!
Needless to say, I’m so glad I didn’t think twice and decided to go with Bluehost.
Click on the link below to get started now for only $3.95 a month. Yep, that’s it!
Don’t doubt yourself! Jump in with both feet, as I did!
What are you waiting for? I would hate for you to let months pass by without signing up when you could start making money now!
Now let’s get started on how to go about getting your blog all set up and ready to start monetizing.
PICKING YOUR BLUEHOST PLAN
Once you click on the link, you will be redirected to the Bluehost homepage. Click on the “Get Started” button to begin your blogging journey!
You will be taken to their pricing page which shows their four different packages available- Basic, Plus, Choice Plus, and Pro. Although all of their packages are great, I went with the Basic plan, and have enjoyed it very much.
Click on the appropriate “select” button once you decided which plan to go with.
CHOOSING YOUR DOMAIN NAME
If you have considered starting a blog in the past, you may have already had a domain name in mind. However, if this the first time it’s crossed your mind and you’re just ready to start making money doing what you love- take your time choosing a name!
Every time I click on a new blog website, I look at their domain name first. That tells me a lot about who is behind the creation of the particular blog post I’m reading. Seriously, this could make or break your blog!
So, if you were thinking of picking “www.thegreenchicken.com” as your domain name, it’s probably best to reconsider. 🙂
BUT! If you’re having a had time choosing a domain name, don’t let that stop you from starting your blog. The nice thing about Bluehost is they allow you to choose your domain later if need be.
This means you can start creating a fabulous blog that’ll be ready to launch once you have a great name in place!
SIGNING UP FOR A BLUEHOST ACCOUNT AND PURCHASING YOUR PLAN
This next step is pretty straight forward; fill out the registration form with your information, and move on to purchase your plan!
You’ve reached the point where you will need to decide whether you want to invest in a 12-month, 24-month, or 36-month plan. Like anything else, the longer the plan, the cheaper you’ll be paying ‘per month.’
Once you’ve selected your plan, you will be given the option to include any add-ons such as Domain Privacy Protection, SiteLock, Office 365, etc.
Lastly, you will enter your payment method and details, agree to the terms and conditions, and click Submit!
That’s it! How easy was that? You’re one step closer to living your dream life!
Let’s move on now that you’re all set up.
At this stage in the game, I was super anxious to get started already!
You should have a Bluehost account, purchased a hosting plan, and chosen a domain name (or skipped it for now).
Let’s get you all set up with WordPress, now.
Go ahead and log in to your Bluehost account, which will direct you to your Cpanel. This is where you will be setting up everything for your website, including WordPress.
This will take you to “Let’s create a website!” page. Everything is self-explanatory. Just toggle “Do you want a blog?”
Now, you’ll be choosing what you want from your hosting plan. Set your online goals, but also make sure to select the first, third and fourth boxes- they’re relevant to blogging.
CHOOSING YOUR WEBSITE THEME
This is where the fun begins! 🙂
You will be provided with a list of themes you can choose for your theme.
You want to choose a theme that will represent you and your brand. In other words, don’t choose a newspaper them if you’re going to be selling makeup products. How boring would that be?!
I also suggest selecting a responsive theme; this means you’ll be able to clearly view your website online, cellphone or tablet.
The first theme I had chosen looked great on my laptop but cut off a lot of my information when I viewed it from my cellphone.
Don’t spend too much time on this, you can always change it up later.
Once you select your theme, WordPress will be installed into your Bluehost account.
You’re ready to start blogging! Again, how simple was that?!
I hope you found this blog post to be helpful! Don’t be afraid to use their live chat option if you get stuck on something.
Trust me, I did. 🙂
Good luck with your future blogging endeavors. I don’t regret starting and I look forward to living a happy life instead of sitting behind my desk at my 9-5 corporate job.
If you have been considering starting a blog, I’m here to give you that little push to start NOW! Don’t wait any longer!