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We see it all the time on the internet: MAKE MONEY ONLINE! Typically, these are scams or a waste of time, but there are legitimate ways to make money online. I’m not talkin’ about a few bucks here and there kind of money, I’m talkin’ about thousands of dollars a month kind of money $$$, simply by starting a blog. There are people who have traded in their boring 9-5 jobs for a lifestyle that works for them, making more money than they ever would before!
You may be wondering how exactly a blog can make you enough money to do that and here are the main ways:
- Affiliate marketing
- Product Sales
- Freelancing (writing, coaching, virtual assistant, etc.)
Think I’m kidding? Take a look at some of these figures:
Michelle Schroeder-Gardner at MakingSenseofCents.com makes $100,000+ a MONTH (In 2017, she made OVER $1,000,000! How crazy is that?!)
Kristin Larsen at BelieveInABudget.com made $289,462 in 2017.
I plan to get to their level one day soon, too!
- 1 Psst! Check out my very first income report here! I was SO excited to make money in my FIRST month of blogging!
- 2 LESS THAN 10 MINUTES OF MAGIC + BLOG TIPS
- 3 WHY SITEGROUND IS AWESOME
- 4 TIME TO GET STARTED!
- 5 Step #1: Choose your plan
- 6 Step 2: Domain registration and payment
- 7 Step 3: Setting up your site and installing WordPress
- 8 Step 4: Choose your theme
Psst! Check out my very first income report here! I was SO excited to make money in my FIRST month of blogging!
As long as you’re willing to put in the work to build up your blog to its full potential, you can reap all the rewards later down the line. It’s not as easy as it may seem, but I can guarantee it will be worth it with the right strategies.
A lot of my friends right now have free blogs on Blogger and Blogspot, which is awesome! I always urge people to get their thoughts and feelings out, not only because it’s healthy, but because you never know who you may help. However, I think we all can agree that it’s ten times better to be helpful while simultaneously making money, right? If you have a blog using Blogger or Blogspot, you should read the rest of this post and make a change that just might change your life for the better!
I’m sure you’re wondering HOW and WHY you should give up the free platform and invest in paid hosting. If you want to make money from your blog, it needs to be hosted. Free platforms don’t give you the freedom to have ads on your website and it isn’t really professional (it’s also ugly) to have www.domainname.blogger.com, you know? When you own your site, you’re able to monetize it and have the freedom to customize it the way you want. It’s a win-win situation!
LESS THAN 10 MINUTES OF MAGIC + BLOG TIPS
Before you decide to sign up for web hosting and start to see the magic for yourself, you should first grab a pen and some paper, fix a snack and take a seat somewhere comfy. After that, it’s time to start planning what you want your blog to actually be about.
What the heck are you talking about?
I’m going to go off the beaten path here and say that you don’t actually need a “niche” per say, as many other bloggers would suggest. I think that as long as your content is relevant, you can focus on several things at once. Take me for example, my blog is focused on lifestyle for millennial women, personal finance and travel all wrapped in one. Some bloggers would focus on only one category, but I feel like it’s all helpful and relevant, so do what works best for you and your brand! Here are three questions to ask yourself when trying to come up with the focus of your blog:
What are you passionate about in life?
It’s always more enjoyable and just plain easier to write about things that you enjoy the most. For example, I’m sure we all would have loved to always write about our favorite video games, movies, and candy back when we were in school, but that wasn’t the case. We had to write about historical figures and other stuff that we dreaded. Needless to say, your blog shouldn’t be that way, especially if you want it to be your full-time job down the line. Write about topics that you can go on and on about and that you and your readers will genuinely enjoy!
Do you have any experience?
One of the best ways to express yourself about a topic is if you have some experience in it. I don’t mean anything particularly professional, it could be anything pertaining to your life experiences: getting in and out of debt, online dating, putting together outfits, etc. If you’ve done it, write about it! You’re saving a life and don’t even know it.
Will this help someone out there?
While not always the case with blogging, if you want to make money, your blog will need to be helpful for your readers. You have to make them want to keep coming back for your knowledge! Your readers want to know what you have to offer them. What’s in it for them if they purchase your product or buy something because you recommended it?
When you’ve come up with your niche, take a few moments to think up one or two potential blog post ideas, just to get your creative juices flowing and for motivation. Trust me, you really CAN do this!
PICK A GREAT DOMAIN NAME
When it comes to what you want to name your blog, try to decide on something that fits the overall theme of the blog. Now that you’ve decided on your niche and have a general idea of what kind of posts you want to write about, it makes it (slightly) easier to come up with a name.
There are a few ways that you can go about doing this: try to think of some keywords that center around your niche and have some fun with the combinations or using a domain generator may help. It might be useful to just use your name if you’re taking the beauty or lifestyle blogger route.
Personally, I wanted something that could tie into all three topics of my blog (personal finance, travel, and lifestyle), so for me, finessingfinances.com was perfect!
Side note: Don’t get TOO crazy! You want something memorable but short that makes it easy for people to remember.
Now it’s time to get to the fun part!
HEAD ON OVER TO SITEGROUND
WHY SITEGROUND IS AWESOME
1. Their customer service is on point (like, for real)
I’m not going to name names, but I briefly tried a highly recommended hosting website before switching to Siteground and the wait time to speak with someone via live chat was ri-damn-diculous. I don’t like having to wait half a day just to ask a quick question or to get an urgent matter resolved. Siteground’s service team is available 24/7 and you won’t be waiting longer than 2 minutes to chat with someone on the phone or through their online chat, which is super convenient for those of us with busy lives.
But don’t just take my word for it!
2. Their website uptime is amazing
You’ll hardly ever hear about Siteground’s hosted sites being down because their uptime is so great. Many hosting companies go down from time to time, often for hours on end and when your livelihood thrives on your website being ready and available at all times, that’s not the greatest feeling in the world. Luckily, you guys won’t have that problem!
3. Signing up is just plain easy
No one likes dragging through a process, so it’s great that signing up with Siteground is straightforward. Once you’re all signed up, you can either get your WordPress set up on your own or you can have the awesome support team set it up for you in less than 10 minutes. This is a great option for those of you that are technologically challenged or just feeling a little lazy.
TIME TO GET STARTED!
So, let’s make sure we’ve got everything settled: Niche? Check. Domain name? Check. The desire to make money and enrich people’s lives? Check. I think we’ve got everything covered, so now it’s time for the meat and potatoes of this post, getting your blog set up!
Step #1: Choose your plan
Siteground has three options for web hosting: StartUp plan, GrowBig plan, and GoGeek plan.
For someone who’s just starting out in the world of blogging, the StartUp plan is more than enough. It’s the one I’m currently using and when you sign up through my link, you get a 60% discount off of the regular price making it only $3.95 a month! Isn’t it great to know people in higher places? 😉 It comes with one website, 10GB Web Space, 10,000 monthly visits and all of Siteground’s essential features. For a year of service, your total comes out to be $62.35, domain included! There are also options for domain privacy and SG site scanner which I recommend, but can be purchased later if you can’t bear to do it at the moment.
The GrowBig plan is the next step up and is a great option if you want to host more than one website. This plan is $5.95 a month, which is an awesome deal especially for all of the features that you get. Even if you don’t decide to have more than one website, this plan is also good for those that get over 10,000 monthly views (go you!) and are hovering closer to 25,000 views. In addition to the extra website threshold and page views allowed, you get even faster support by getting priority, faster loading speeds through Super Cacher and free backups! For a year of this service, you’re looking at $86.35, domain included. When you think about the amount of money that can be made from your blog, that amount is trivial and a great price!
The last plan that they have to offer is the GoGeek plan. This is the plan for really popular blogs and websites because your monthly visit count is up to 100,000 (whoa)! This plan includes triple the space as the StartUp plan with 30 GB and in addition to the essential and premium features offered in the GrowBig plan, you also get MORE features that enhance your website’s speed and security such as having to share the resources with fewer people. The total of this plan for a year will cost you $158.35 big ones or $11.95 a month. Not a bad price for starting your own business, right?
Step 2: Domain registration and payment
After you decide which hosting plan will work best for your needs, the next step is to register your domain name or if you’re transferring to Siteground from a different hosting site, you would enter the domain that you want to be switched to Siteground. I switched from one hosting site to Siteground and it was a really smooth process, something I’m so thankful for! Remember, if you’re registering a domain name, it needs to be uniquely yours. It’s a pretty quick and easy step and they’ll let you know if your domain name needs to be changed if it turns out not to be as unique as you originally thought.
Once your domain name is decided, you move on to the next step of starting your blog and that’s paying for the hosting. If you’re anything like me, you look at your debit or credit card once or twice before finally biting the bullet and typing in the information like, do I really want to do this? YES, yes you do and for a great price while you’re at it! Once I entered my details and hit ‘Pay Now’, a weight was lifted off my shoulder and it registered in my mind that I took the biggest step towards my goals in buying my own website.
Step 3: Setting up your site and installing WordPress
If you’re like me and didn’t know any better when initially setting up my site through Siteground, then you can go through the steps of setting up your site yourself. Mind you, it isn’t hard to do at all through Siteground’s installer, but why not finesse and get what you paid for with the awesome support that Siteground offers. Like I mentioned before, they can set everything up for you in a matter of minutes. All you have to do is kick back and wait. I won’t bother going into too much detail since this is a fairly simple process to navigate and/or have done for you. Once they’re done, they’ll send you the information for the initial login on WordPress, which you can change later.
Step 4: Choose your theme
This is my absolute favorite part (besides writing, of course!), finding a great theme and customizing my blog. WordPress has tons of free themes, which is great after just shelling out some cash for the hosting, but personally, those themes just weren’t going to cut it for me. I knew I wanted my blog to have a certain look about it, a look that I couldn’t get with the themes that WordPress offered. I ultimately ended up getting my theme from Pipdig, which I wholeheartedly recommend. They have minimal, feminine WordPress themes for great prices and when they have upgrades and updates to the theme, they automatically install on your blog. Here are a few more places to find awesome themes:
And there you have it, folks! You did it and now you can let your ideas flow!
I would love to hear from you when you’re all done!
Drop the link to your website in the comments or shoot me an email!
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