It takes most people anywhere from 6 – 12 months to earn a respectable income from blogging.
And this is why, even as we approach 2022, blogging is still a great way to earn an income online.
It’s super simple to start up a blog. You do not have to be tech-savvy or a web developer, which makes it a great option if you’re looking to earn an income online and have fun doing it!
Blogging certainly isn’t an instant money-maker. Like any business, it takes hard work, smart planning, and perseverance to get it off the ground. If you can motivate yourself and commit to blogging long-term, you absolutely can make it a full-time revenue stream.
So, how can you get started with your blogging career?
Buy a domain
To actually own a blog, it takes less than 10 minutes. This is where every successful monetised blog starts! You need to:
Look for a website host
There are lots of hosting companies out there! Some popular examples are GoDaddy, 1&1, and Hostgator. I used 1&1 as they offer free privacy protection for a year (which is a MUST). The website host will let you search for available domains to buy. Domains that have never been used before tend to be the cheapest, but they will always tell you the price before you go ahead.
Choose a blog name
If your end goal is to make money blogging, you’ll want to choose a timeless domain name and a universal blog extension (that’s the .com bit at the end). A domain ending in .com is considered a top level domain, as these are the most universal, so if you can, choose .com.
A domain name generator is a great tool to use to inspire you! Aim for something memorable, or catchy and clever. Try to avoid using hyphens, and avoid domain names that are overly long. You can do a bit of research to try and match your domain name with high traffic keywords which gives you a little boost when appearing in search results.
Choose a website builder platform
There are a few website builders on the market nowadays! Some new(ish) ones include Squarespace and Wix. Personally I like WordPress, which I have used before and does a lot of the work for you. Once you have bought a domain, you can link your website to WordPress so you can manage everything in one place.
Start planning your content
I mentioned this tip in a previous blog post, but a great idea is to write down 52 blog post ideas before you even touch the publish button. This way, you’ll have 1 blog post every week for a year and you can keep adding to the list so you never risk running out of ideas.
Before you publish your first blog post, have a backlog of posts written and ready to go. You need to publish consistently, especially in the beginning, in order to establish a steady growth.
I have a great blog post about growing your blog organically you can check out.
Start promoting your content
After you hit publish, you absolutely must promote your blog posts. A great basic rule to follow is: spend as much time on promotion as you do actually creating the content. Get into the habit of promoting your content across multiple social channels after you publish. You can join blogging groups on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook, where everyone helps each other out with engaging on new posts.
You probably are aware by now – Instagram influencers are a thing. Brands pay influencers and micro-influencers to promote their contact and review their products (as they do with bloggers!) so, trying to grow your instagram along-side your blog is not a bad idea. Obviously, one upside is if you obtain a sizeable following on Instagram, you can use it to promote your blog content. But, Instagram is one of the most popular platforms for bloggers, so it makes sense to invest more of your time on growing your Instagram as well.
So… how do you start actually making money?
Display ads are the quickest and most straightforward way to monetise your blog. These are advertisements that appear in your blog’s, sidebar, body, header and footer. You receive a small payment for each impression (or click) on those adverts from your blog’s visitors.
However, in order to generate a pretty penny with display ads, you’ll need a lot of visitors coming to your blog. You will need hundreds of thousands of page views to earn enough as a you would from good paying full-time job.
With display advertisements, you have a few choices. Google Adsense payouts are quite low, so your best bet is to go with premium ad networks, which means you’ll get paid considerably more. Monometric, AdThrive or Mediavine are all good options.
Affiliate marketing works through adding a unique link to a product or service on your blog. This unique link will be created for you by a brand; and, if a visitor to your page clicks on the link and makes a purchase, you will get a commission for each sale. Commissions are typically based on a percentage of the cost of the product.
Affiliate programmes are often run directly through the brand’s website. However, there are also affiliate networks that handle several affiliate programmes all in one place.
How it works
Let’s say a reader comes across your blog post, and they click on one of your affiliate links, which takes them to an Amazon product. They decide to purchase the item. Great! They then leave.. they go to work, and come home. Later on in the evening, they decide to make another purchase on Amazon, because the Amazon page is still open on a tab.
Now, the good news here is, because they already clicked on your affiliate link, which is still active for 24 hours, you are paid commission for both items even though you only technically advertised the one item.
Nowadays, brands are turning to influencers and bloggers who have followings – big or small – to review and promote their products and services. If you’re looking to make money blogging, brand collaborations are a great way to earn consistent income at your discretion.
Once your blog has gained some authority, you may be approached by brands looking to collaborate. Most often, this will be in the form of product reviews or sponsored posts.
A brand sends you a product to review you write a blog post detailing your experience with the product or service. In exchange, you get paid or get to keep the product for free.
Brands will ‘sponsor’ you to write a blog post and promote their product or service within your post. Most of the time, brands will pitch a price they have in mind to you (there is always room to negotiate, and you should negotiate!) and they will let you know what their requirements are. This is usually based on your blogs ‘reach’.
There are lots of blogging networks that help you connect with brands for brand collaborations. Here are 3 networks I recommend:
Don’t be discouraged if it takes a while to gain traction. It takes a lot of time and energy to become a successful blogger. Most bloggers you know definitely didn’t pop-up overnight with 6 figure incomes!
Another important thing to note: many bloggers also don’t make money from blogging alone. Just like successful business owners don’t only have one revenue stream. The majority of bloggers do not make a living by only by selling sidebar advertisements and publishing one article every day. Be innovative! Use your blog to market your business, promote any products you sell, promote your freelance services!
I hope I have helped you on your blogging journey! Feel free to ask any questions in the comments. Best of luck!