This post may contain affiliate links.
I started my blog on a whim. I did not have months of planning involved, I just kind of did it. I knew there were certain subjects I was interested in, but it was kind of just a matter of doing it. So, I started doing my research to try and find perfect ways to get my blog rolling from the start. Within my first week, I made money. Now, it might not have been a lot of money, but it was a small victory in getting my blog going. I went in with no expectations, and came out with success.
Now I am a normal, 21 year old, college student. I major in Early Childhood Education with a concentration in Special Education, so when it came to blogging, I had minimal experience. I had fooled around with a free WordPress blog I had created for fun, but that was about it.
So where does a girl like me get started?
1. Self Hosting
The single most important tip to get started is to invest in a self hosted site. For this, I suggest siteground. I have had no issues whatsoever with using them for hosting. The best part is, there are different options to get started. If you want to spend less money, start with their most basic plan. If you want more flexibility with controlling your site, premium would definitely be a better option. No matter what, you are controlling your site.
Siteground also has a simple 1 click installation for WordPress which is so easy to use! You have the power to create your own site, and self hosting also gives you so many different options to drive traffic to your site.
2. Creating a niche you enjoy and creating rich content.
In order to write good content, you have to enjoy your niche. Making your niche something you have a personal interest in will hopefully allow you to create better content, and also drive more viewers to your site who have an interest in your niche.
I decided to focus on three different topics which all overlap with each other. Food, my dog, and lifestyle are three of my favorite topics to talk about, on and off the blog. So I post recipes for humans and dogs, dog tips, and lifestyle tips for in and out of the kitchen. Many people choose to focus on one niche, but finding that mine all overlapped, I felt as though this would make my blog more unique…and who doesn’t love hundreds of pictures of my adorable pup! Here’s one just for your enjoyment:)
3. Creating Social Media accounts.
Driving traffic to your blog is extremely important. Over the past few days, my page views have skyrocketed, much to the help of my social media. You want to start with the main ones, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Make sure you have you accounts set to business accounts on Instagram and Pinterest, this helps you promote your content more.
There are a lot of Facebook groups you can join to help drive traffic to your site. Interacting with other bloggers is EXTREMELY important. They understand what you are doing and can also be a great resource if you need any help. There are also a lot of opportunities for promoting your blog.
Three groups I prefer are:
Pinterest is also a great way to drive traffic to your site. Pinterest has become one of the best social media platforms for bloggers. There are a lot of different ways to enhance your Pinterest, but one way to get off and running with your account is to join group boards. Group boards work just like one of your personal boards that you pin to, but it has other collaborators as well. This means a lot of people are looking at these boards, driving easy traffic to your site.
To find popular boards for your niche, I suggest checking out Pingroupie. It lists pretty much all of the group boards you could possibly need to know about.
Or, if you love recipes, feel free to check out my personal group board Blogger’s Best Recipes. Just follow the directions in the description to join!
4. Affiliate Marketing.
This is how I have made money so far, and it is so easy to do. The above steps should be done prior to see success in this area, but once you do, you will be motivated to keep going.
I got started with Amazon Affiliates. This was a great place for me to get started, because they do not require you to have a certain amount of traffic coming to your blog as some other affiliate program do. This means you can get started right away, which I think helped me make money within one week.
Making sure you are promoting content that is relevant is important. For example, in my post Five Dog Toys for Big Chewers, I provide the links to the products I suggest, but all of the products are relevant to the topic of my post.
I am still getting started. My blog has not been live long. But I want others thinking about getting started in blogging to know that you can have success pretty fast. Don’t get down if it does not take off as fast as you want to, this stuff does take time. But just know, it IS possible. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. Go for it! You will not regret it!