You know what this is? This thing that you’re reading right now? It’s a website. A fully hosted, monetized website. And who might the owner be?
Yep! It’s me! It was me all along!
It may sound weird if you’re new to blogging, or online business, but I made this website with no technical background. Literally. I can’t even properly back up my laptop, but here I am writing this out.
Now, I’m not bragging, you see. You’re probably here because you want to start a blog yourself, and don’t know where to start, or if you should even start one in the first place. As someone who was in your place a while ago, I can tell you that it’s certainly possible to do it.
If a guy like me, with no experience at all, could make a website and profit from it, who’s to say you can’t?
No, no I can’t.
How Do I Make a Free Blog Anyway?
Yes, you can make a free blog. Don’t believe those scams that cost you hundreds for a website because “programmers charge at least $1500 for a full website.”
One thing you can be sure of today is that you absolutely don’t need to be technical at all. Maybe 15 years ago you woulda needed a professional programmer, but now? There are literally thousands of free website creators.
My personal recommendation is to use my free website builder down below. It lets you choose a domain name, and check if it’s available, and builds your site, all in one go! Try it out!
The websites you make with this baby on WordPress, the biggest blogging system out there. It powers 25% of the Internet, and it’s by far the easiest system out there. Best of all, these sites are totally free! No costs! You get a blog just like that! You don’t even have to pay hosting!
You might have more questions about starting a blog. Actually, you surely do, since if you didn’t you wouldn’t be here. It’s best to read the rest of the article before using the website builder.
What Should My Blog be About?
That’s a good question. Actually, that’s a really good question. I think one of the main reasons more people don’t blog is because they just don’t know what to write about.
The best way to choose a topic (or niche, as it’s called) is to pick something you’re interested in. You may think that’s self-explanatory, but it’s really not.
Ever notice all those weight loss websites? Their numbers are infinite!
That’s because weight loss is one of the most popular niches, so lots of people choose to write about it. But the truth is, many of those people aren’t actually passionate about it.
You know how often blogs have to be updated. Can imagine writing several long articles a week about something you have no attachment to, only for a possibility to become successful? That’s what school is for!
So you have to be interested in a niche you choose, but that’s not all you have to worry about. Remember, a blog is a long term commitment. I’m talking years here. You need to have material. Otherwise you’ll run out of blog ideas very soon.
This here blog is about making money online/avoiding scams. A niche like that will always have new material, since so many people want to make money online, and hate scams. But a niche like “Rio Olympics 2016” is dead in the water! The Rio Olympics are over, and will never come back.
Any you have to be sure other people are interested in it too!
Snow globes, rock music,
chemical warfare, ice cream, Dragon Ball…. those all have legs, and are very popular (you’d be surprised about snow globes). Wanna know how I know? I use a keyword tool.
A keyword tool is a way to see how many people are searching for a phrase in search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing (but mostly Google, because who are we kidding?). Most blogs recommend Google’s free Keyword Planner, but I personally recommend Jaaxy, the ultimate tool. Check out this search I made with it for Dragon Ball:
That’s a lot of searches! As you can see, Dragon Ball is a popular niche. If you wanna know more, you could read my review, or try a Jaaxy search of your own down below!
It’s really easy, and you’ll surely find a niche!
Okay, I Have a Niche! But What Do I Name My Site?
That’s another hard question. This is like choosing a title for an article/post to me. Sometimes my head just closes. But site names are changeable at least. Domain names are basically permanent, though.
Let’s look at domain names first. That’s the name you type in the address bar. So mine is mohammad-makki.com. Your domain can be a keyword that’s really popular, or it could be a catchy description of the site. It could even be your name, which I recommend doing. But that’s just me.
One thing to consider is to avoid being generic. “howtoloseweight.com” is generic. But that’s taken (the website builder knows all!) anyway. I’ve seen lots of amazing names. Some of them were really clever, but of course I can’t remember them.
Make sure not to overthink it, though. If there’s one thing that will kill your blog, it’s waiting too long to choose a domain name. ‘Cause then you won’t have a blog in the first place. Kinda like a abortion. Or is that stillbirth? I’m not good with pregnancy analogies. Or pregnancy, for that matter.
Now, site names are different from domain names. So for me, my site name is Makki’s Marketing. It’s actually not the best name, now that I think about it, but it is unique and it means something.
Your site name can be changed, so it’s not as much of a critical decision as the domain name. Still, it’s an important part of your brand, so be careful with it.
Oh yeah, you don’t have to have “.com” in your domain name, but it’s good idea if you can. It’s just more familiar.
After you got the niche and the names down, you’ll need to add content!
They say “content is king.” Who are “they?” I don’t know, but they say it.
Content is the reason people will visit your blog. It’s why they’ll read and share your articles. If you don’t write out content, your site is dead in the water.
It’s becoming a running gag by now, but this is definitely one of the main reasons people don’t start blogs. You have to create quality content on a near-daily basis. It’s pretty exhausting, and now that Google and other search engines penalize short/ rushed/gamed articles or blog posts, you’re gonna have to get used to writing a lot.
Here’s some good news, though: writing out blogs is way different than writing essays or anything like that. Blog content is personalized, you see. See how I’m writing? This style would never stand if I used it in the organic chemistry paper I’m supposed to be working on, for the chemistry class I’m not taking.
If you want your site recognized, you need to publish frequently. Otherwise you won’t get trusted by the search engines. Since most people quit their blogs a few months in, there’s some solid proof to this.
The prospect of making big bucks is honestly the motivation behind any wannabe blogger. When you have guys like making around $100,000 a year, people will generally want a piece of the pie.
So the main way you can expect to make money from your new blog is to use Google AdSense. See that ad on the sidebar just to the right? That’s an AdSense ad. In the beginning these ads only give you a few cents, but as you increase your traffic, those cents become a lot more than just pocket change.
Another prominent way is to make use of affiliate marketing, which is promoting products for a share of the revenue, using special “affiliate links.” Many links on my site are affiliate links. They don’t change prices of products at all for buyers, but they do help me out. This also requires considerable traffic, but it pays off. Many income breakdowns reveal that affiliate programs make up most of the revenue a blog brings in, you know.
These are the most well-known monetization methods, but they’re not the only ones.
Check out this income report from ProBlogger, a really popular blog by Darren Rowse. It’s combined with a photography blog of his, Digital Photography. The sectors are based on profits, so you can see how cheap affiliate marketing is in terms of expenses.
A lot of blogs make income reports like this, just to give an idea of how many streams of income a blog can have. You can see there’s more than just ads.
eBooks are particularly huge sources of income, if you can write a good one that helps readers. You can even outsource if you can’t write. I’ve even seen some new bloggers release eBooks and make a ton of money and traffic, by releasing it on Amazon.
Journey of a Thousand Posts
A new blog is created every half a second somewhere in the world, making for around 172,000 blogs created a day. This is 2013 information! Imagine how many are created now?
Now imagine how many of those are maintained for longer than a few months. I don’t think a lot of them do. Blogs are basically businesses, and businesses have a high rate of failure. But blogs have one thing regular businesses don’t, and that’s a surefire way to succeed.
All you have to do to be a success in the blogging world is to regularly create quality content. No joke. Eventually Google will catch on, and you’ll have a bona-fide source of organic traffic! Throw in some paid traffic, and you’re on your way to stardom! Actually, you don’t even need paid traffic.
What you do need, though, is dedication. It could take months to make a dollar from your blog. It could take years to make a full-time income. That’s why you need to like what you do, even if your main motivation is making dough. I guess this is why it’s not the most popular thing to do. I know it’s why “get rich quick” schemes are so popular though. Those scams run on dreams of quick online success, and should be ignored.
So use the site builder I left at the beginning of this post, and make your blog already, bub! What’re you waiting for? The tool is right there!
Your wingman in websites,