If I had a dime for how many times I said to my husband, “Can you believe I actually have a blog?” The other day I was making a chart to keep track of my posts. My sweet husband walked by and said, “What in the world are you doing?” like he’d seen me weaving animal skins together to make clothing.
“I’m making a chart for when I promote my blog posts.”
Him: “In Microsoft Word? Why aren’t you using Excel?”
me: (sheepish look.)
Him: “You don’t know how to use Excel, do you?”
And what a sweetie, pie – he made me a (much improved) spreadsheet. What can I say? I’m a writer, not a techie. Yet, I have l learned much over the last, really, two years since I’ve monetized and publicized my blog.
If you’ve ever thought, “Man, it would be fun to start a blog. But I never could,” I am here to tell you: Yes. You. Can. YES.YOU.CAN. While I am by no means an expert on blogging, here are a few things I would have loved to know as I was starting my blog. There are literally books written on this topic, so it is my no means comprehensive, but this is sort of the process I took.
- Find credible sources to learn from. Sure, you can “google” about anything. (I do that often.) But it’s nice to find one place to get the bulk of your beginner advice. I love Amy Lynn Andrews’ series on “How To Start A Blog.” She is a legitimate, moral, person who gives sound advice. Oh, and it’s easy to understand. Anyone seen “The Office”? I keep thinking of Michael saying, “Explain this to me like I’m a five-year-old…” Bless her – that’s what she does.
- Find real, live bloggers to talk to. Bonus points if they are a real life friend. But they don’t have to be. I love the girls at Blogging On The Side, and they have an excellent Facebook group where you can join up and ask any and all questions.
- Find a mastermind group. Once you’re getting to know some other bloggers, find a handful to join in a smaller group of 5-8 bloggers to share ideas, questions, posts. I’ve been in two, and they are so helpful.
- Use quality images, and make graphics in Picmonkey to promote your posts. I purchase many of my images from The Dollar Photo Club, and Picmonkey is pretty easy to use. With a little work, you can make an image just like the ones you see on Pinterest!
- Once you’ve set up your blog and have made some posts with images, you need to increase your page views. People need to see your page! Besides sharing your page with your friends, I suggest sharing your posts on Pinterest, Facebook, and link-ups. (Here are a list of good link-ups.) Once I started “pinning” my posts to Pinterest, I had a couple do very well, and I get a good amount of traffic from there daily. I have less views from Facebook and link-ups, but often it depends on what time of blogger you are.
- Once you’re beginning to get some regular traffic to your page, here are the ways that I have found to make money, from least to greatest (for me)
- Google Ads (You install a “code” on your page, and when people click, you make money.)
- Amazon Affiliates (You make money if people buy what you mention.)
- Sponsored Posts (My favorite is Clever Girls!)
- Your Own Product – whether it’s a book you wrote (like mine), products you make, artwork you create, etc.
- Finally, if you want to make money blogging (or have a blog at all!) you need a quality hosting provider. This is the____ Based on recommendations I had read, I use Hostgator and I am so glad that I do! When I first started my blog (and had no CLUE), I spent an hour on the phone (on Thanksgiving night, by the way!) with a gentleman from Hostgator. He was so helpful and easy to understand.
Anytime I have had an issue, I get an immediate representative on the phone, who understands me, who answers my questions promptly. Having good tech support is an absolute must if you are running a blog. Hostgator provides:
- 24/7 live support via chat, phone, and email – you’re not alone. We’re here to help.
- One click WordPress installs – no messy downloading and uploading of files.
- One click and start easy to use website builder – drag and drop tools that make building a site super simple.
- Design services – don’t want to build your site? Let our pros do it for you.
- Marketing services (SEO and PPC) – want to generate traffic? Our in house experts want to help.
- Domains – HostGator is your one-stop-shop for domains!
I encourage you to check out Hostgator today!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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