Hello, my name is James and I make four figure earnings from my blogs; My aim in this tutorial is to teach and show you how to start a blog, set it up using WordPress with Bluehost and practical steps you need to take to become successful.
I recommend you bookmark this page, link back to it, share it on Facebook and Twitter ( Keep it because it will serve as a resource guide for you and it will be easy to check back on this page if you need help.)
One thing you should know and understand is that ” Blogging is rewarding, interesting, profitable, requires hard work and there are secrets to making it big. You will learn all in this tutorial.
You might want to ask ‘ How am I making the money?. I own and run 3 different blogs ( including this one, bloggingconsult.org), a viral news website and a revenue sharing website. 60% of my earnings are from Affiliate marketing, 35% from Google Adsense and 5% from Direct advertisement ( PR, Guest Posts e.t.c.).
Benefits of blogging?
You might want to ask? The answer varies from one blogger to the other, but generally, 95% of bloggers will tell you that monetary gains ( ability to make money is one major advantages). See my earning reports, along with some known bloggers!!
Take a cup of coffee, relax, take out your pen and note down the important information and steps you need to take in order to start a successful online blog.
Before reading ahead; first, get a free domain name and a huge discount (USD3.34) on your monthly blog hosting. Domain name typically costs around 30USD yearly, but with my link below at Bluehost, you will get it free and a great discount ( it is usually 7.89 per month without discount). After this, send me a mail through my contact page and I will help you set up everything.
Starting a blog is not a challenge nor is it a problem, but the main question is starting the blog rightly and grooming it for success. For practical guidelines, there are four major categories/stages, broken down in simple languages you need to do to fully have a functioning/successful blog. They are:
- Purpose: ” Know why and then know “How”
- Skill’s Factors/Requirements
- Blog Set up
- Promotional Stage / Marketing Tasks
Please, be patient as you read through this detailed tutorial one by one:
- Purpose: ” Know why and then know “How”
The success of blogging begins with the question ” Why the need for a blog? There are different reasons why people blog. For example, you might be blogging for your company ( managing your company’s blog) in order to get closer to its consumers.
Secondly, you might be blogging to get your opinions heard ( this is common with political bloggers). In addition, you might also be blogging to share your skills with the general audience ( example of this niche includes food, fashion, tech, bloggers e.t.c.).
After having a clear purpose and defining it, then you can ask yourself ” How will I blog?
The ” how” of blogging is what is being covered in this tutorial.
- Skill’s Factors/Requirements
People fail in life because they refuse to plan. Secondly, one of the biggest setback to the growth of any business by an entrepreneur is starting a business he/she does not know about.
When you want to start a blog, the skill requirement is very much important because it is the foundation for the success you are envisaging. You should ask yourself the following questions with sincere answers, because your long term success depends on these vital points stated below.
- What niche are you thinking of?
- Do you have a business plan?
- Are you thinking of sustenance?
- Get Original, Non-Plagiarized and Unique Contents
- 1# How to make a successful blog – Importance of a Niche
The first mistake people make is by going to the wrong niche. Just because Patt Flynn makes approximately USD120,000 per month from his blog does not mean you should set up his own type of blog. One of the secret of blogging is setting up and launching in a niche or area that you are good at, or at least, you are an authority.
Because, blogging is some sort of having personal online presence, you should be able to relate with your customers and publish contents that will make them respect you, tag you as an authority and at the same are willing to spread the news about you.
Though, when looking at profitable niches, the following are recommended
- Specialized skill blogs ( e.g. Nursing, Doctor, Finance e.t.c)
- Wellness and health related blogs
- Tech ( technology and gadget related niches)
- Fashion, beauty and lifestyle blogs e.t.c
Knowing your niche is an important task you should sort out first before venturing out.
Recommendation: Get your Acts together, be focused on your area of specialty
- 2# Have a Business Plan And Think of Sustenance
Blogging is serious business because it involves serious work if you want to be successful. And because it is something serious that will take your time, commitment, resources and dedication; It is mandatory you have both short and long term business plan and also think of how you will sustain the blog.
Many people go into blogging without thinking of how they will get the contents they will be posting, the frequency of their publications, how they will grow the blog, how they will hire writers, what will happen to the blog if they are not making money adequately and lastly, how they will be able to sustain it for at least one solid year?
In having a business plan, you should give prompt attention to advertisement and how you will be making right from the beginning. Go out and be a spy. Look out for your competitors ( bloggers that are already in your niche), study their approach, look out for the advertisers on their blog and copy out their strategies.
Recommendation: Draft A Business plan and execute it dilligently
- 3# Be Unique and have original content
How do you get the attention of ants? Just sprinkle some sugar on the floor and within few hours, you will see them eating the sugar!! How do you get goats and cattle to your farmland, ranch or grazingfield?, just make sure your grasses are green and there are lots of fresh grasses, they will come in their tens, thousands and stay on the ranch!!
The same principle applies to a blog; having quality and original contents is the key to your success. You should not be in a hurry, try to publish good, informational contents and within some few months, you will be getting thousands of web traffic to your blog.
Have you noticed my blog posts? Do you see how I structure, arrange and thoughtfully write the contents?
Once you are well able to articulate, digest and ready for the above mentioned skill’s requirement/factors, the next step is on how you can set up the blog. This stage is what I termed as being techy!!
- Blog Set Up – Technical Stage/Requirements
This is the beginning, this is the first step you will take to be able to have www.yourownblog.com ( just an example) and be able to view it in browsers. For the purpose of this tutorial, we will be focusing on setting up a blog that you can control ( your own). This is because, while there are free platforms to start a blog, they are not advisable because:
- They are not secured
- They will not allow you to make money
- They dont make you look like a professional
- You are not the owner ( You are not in control).
In your own case, I am recommending setting up your own blog using WordPress and hosting it with Bluehost. Let us dive straight into the tutorial fully.
To set up your blog, the following are what you need to get and do:
- A domain name
- A Webhosting Service
- WordPress Installation – Its Themes and plugins inclusive
- Configuration of the blog settings and plugins
- How to create a Post
- How to write your first post ( tips to customize your post with images/videos insert)
- 3# Get Your Domain name and Register it
For example, if the name of your blog to be is ” moneysavingtips’; then the name of the domain would either be ” moneysavingtips.com”, “moneysavingtips.net’, moneysavingtips.org,” moneysavingtips.co.uk” e.t.c.
Basically, the name you are going to give your blog determines what the domain name should be. However, you should remember that one of the strong characteristics of a good brand of domain name is that:
- It should be short, easy to remember, easy to spell and pronounce
- The domain name should not be too long and should not contain numbers ( not ideal)
To actually get your domain name involves doing some background check to see if you have any name that is available. I suggest you use the domain checker tool from Bluehost for this task:
One of the main reasons why I recommend using Bluehost to get your domain name is because you will not pay for the cost of the domain ( for the first year, saving you approximately USD30), provided you decide to host the domain name with them.
Check if available!!
- 4# Host The Domain name With Bluehost Company
For ease of use and security, it is always advisable to stick to one hosting company that will both take care of your domain name and hosting under one umbrella.
To this effect, Bluehost webhosting company comes preferred compared to other hosting companies.
Before people and visitors will be able to view and see your domain on the internet, the next step is to host the domain name.
Just head over to Bluehost ( after the purchase of the domain and follow the hosting registration guidelines as seen below):
- Go for the starter plan ( at least for now, you can upgrade later as your blog grows)
Accept the options that the arrows are pointing at:
After this, the next page will be the billing details, make the necessary request and move on to buy the package ( as seen below):
The below page will pop up ( ignore it)
Notification of successful purchase!!
Congratulations at this stage, to start configuring and design your blog, follow the next steps below ( Click on hosting as seen above)
5#WordPress Installation – Its Themes and plugins inclusive
Bluehost has made owning and launching one’s website and blog so easy. Follow the screen shot below and proceed:
- Go to the Cpanel, locate the Website section, locate the WordPress logo, then click on it.
This message comes up if the account opening is successful, just close this box and proceed to the cpanel:
After clicking on it, wait for about 3sec for the new page to load
Follow the on-screen guidance:
After this, the WordPress installation will begin at the background and should finish in the next 1-2 mins.
Just be patient, and at the end, you will receive a screen message that says “Your install is complete!”
Click view credentials and write down the displayed details ( it is just showing temporarily, so copy the information out and save it).
- Your URL ( e.g. http://bloggingconsult.org/)
- Your Admin URL ( e.g. http://bloggingconsult.org/wp-admin) – this is where you will need to log in, start posting, change your designs e.t.c.
- Username ( in most cases, it is your email address)
- Password ( a temporary password, and of course, you can change it later)
If everything is perfect, you will get a congratulatory message as shown below:
The next step is to access your new blog and start setting the blog, choosing your design, arranging the layouts, installing plugins and setting your SEO rightly ( most important).
The next step is for you to log in now; to do this, click on the ‘Admin URL’ and you will be shown the below page
What will be shown will now be your WordPress dashboard; and from here, you can design your blog, start posting articles:
- 6# Chose a WordPress Theme design, Upload and configure.
Different website designs exist for different purposes and niche. Since we are using WordPress, the blog template we will be using is what is called a WordPress themes.
For example, this blog ( bloggingconsult.org) you are presently reading was built using this premium template from studiopress ( check it out): My very good friend ( owner of madailygist.com, makes approximately 150-300USD per day) and he is making use of a USD49 templates for the beautiful blog.
Pat Flynn from smartpassiveincome that makes approximately USD120,000 per month is using this simple themes from Genesis.
So, in your own case, you will need to search for a professional looking WordPress themes you can use for your blog design.
No matter the niche you are thinking about, you can easily find SEO optimized, mobile responsive templates at:
After buying the theme, download the ZIP file to your system, and follow the below instructions to install it on your new blog.
Follow the screen views below:
You can watch the video below for easy understanding:
- 7# Important Settings and Plugin Installations!
Two essential things powers your blog and they are the type of WordPress themes you have chosen and the WordPress plugins you have installed. AS a beginner, these two factors plays a major role, especially your plugins.
First, before you start posting any content, you need to adjust and put some settings right: I have summarized them below using pictures:
From your dashboard, implement the following: Click on settings;
click General and type in required information e.g. title of your blog e.t.c.
- Click Writing: In this section, you need to update your pings. This is important because anytime you publish a post, these pings inform Google and other search engines that you have recently done something on your site and they will automatically crawl your blog. To proceed, copy and paste the following into the box:
After this, remember to save the changes!!
Click Reading: Under readings, you will see ” search engine Visibility ( leave it blank the way it is or better still, check it ( since you are yet to publish any posts), but remember to uncheck it once you have confiured your site and have published your first post. If you don’t do this, search engines will not visit or crawl your new blog.
Click Discussion: Leave it the way it is
Click Permalinks: This is the most important area, infact, this is where you should visit immediately you host your blog and your dashboard is ready. All what you need to do is to change the settings to ” Post name”.
- 8# Plugin Installations!
I earlier mentioned that plugins powers your WordPress blog. They are like the engine and the hydraulic brake of of your car. I have listed the most important plugins you need to download and install ( it is free): Just visit wordpress.org and download the followings:
- Jetpack Plugin
- WordPress SEO plugin
- Akismet Security plugin
- W3 Total Cache
- All in One Schema.org Rich Snippets plugin
- Easy digital download ( recommend if you want to sell downloadable items e.g. music, eBooks)
- Nofollow for external Link
- Contact Form7
- MailPoet Newsletters ( Ideal for lead generation and display of subscription forms)
- Login LockDown ( Needed for security)
To set and adjust your new blog for search engine optimization ( SEO); I recommend you read the SEO category posts I have outlined here:
- 9# Get ready for your First Blog Post
As you can see , how to start a blog is not rocket science and neither is it tough; Once done with the above guidelines, you are set to start your first blog post. It is very easy; just look for the posts section, click on ‘Add New’ and a screen page will be displayed.
Fill in required details, e.g. title and contents of your post. In the content section, you can add media, contact form, change Font color ( as you can see on this post you are presently reading).
Advice: Learn to format your posts professionally!!
My next post is an extensive tutorial that teaches you how you can get traffic and promote your new blog. ( Stay Tuned)
OFFER OF HELP.
I can help you set up and configure your blog. The only condition to getting my free offer is to get the hosting and domain through my link at Bluehost
Conclusion and feedback
Secondly, the financial reward is great. You can check my earnings report to see how much I make per month ( including other notable bloggers) and how I make the money.
I sincerely believe that you should start a blog for either yourself, your profession, company, business, church, mosque, school e.t.c..