5 Things to Consider Before Starting a Blog
Blogging has become very popular, not only because this way you can share your own view and thoughts but also because is very easy to start one. If you want to create a hobby blog, go ahead and just do it! If you are looking to start a blog and become a professional blogger, there are 5 very important things to consider. In this article I will showcase you the basic steps you need to follow before starting a blog.
Choosing a Topic
I think that the most important element of any blog is the topic. The ultimate goal is to make money from your blog. So choosing the niche is not an easy task. You want to pick a topic that can be profitable but at the same time to have some experience in that topic. It is worthless choosing a topic that you have no clue about, at least for the start.
A blog is not only about a single topic. You can choose to have a multi-niche blog, but try to keep the topics relevant. It would be strange to have an internet marketing blog, where time to time you blog about cars too. Some of your readers might also be interested in cars, but most of them will find it unusual.
If you can’t decide on what topic you should start a blog, just consider the topics you are interested in. Perform some online research to find who will want to read your blog and to find the potential in a particular topic. Other blogs can also be a good source of inspiration for choosing a niche for your own blog.
Creating Amazing Content
Bill Gates has published an article back in 1996 entitling it “Content is King”. What he said two decades ago is very valuable today:
Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting.
So the second most important element of a successful blog is content. In order to write good content that others will want to read and share is important to have good resources and knowledge on the topic. Copying content from other websites is just no-go! First, because is not ethical to copy other’s work, second, is also illegal to distribute copyrighted material, third, because Google will not send you traffic.
Google is very smart on figuring out the quality and uniqueness of website content. It can also determine on which site was first published a piece of information. So if you think that just copying articles from other popular blogs will bring you success, you better don’t waste your time blogging.
Besides creating high quality and informative content, you have to do it on regular basis. As you create and publish more and more content you will get more and more readers. Publishing articles on weekly basis will encourage your readers to come back ever week. Creating content on daily basis is even better.
You can always invite other bloggers to write on your blog. Some of them will write for money, while others will ask for promotion. Certainly you can also write for other bigger blogs and gain more readers this way.
Choosing a Name
Your blog’s name will be your brand. When someone will refer to you, the will usually refer to the content you have published on your blog. Choosing a good name is crucial. You can go with your own name, but if you have a hard to remember name, is better to pick something that is easy to remember.
The name you choose for your blog does not necessary has to represent the topics your write about. You don’t have to pick a keyword domain either; in my opinion is just better to come up with a name that can be easily pronounced, is short, catchy, easy to remember, and cannot be confused with others. Google – does not mean anything, but when we say “google” we actually mean “searching online”.
Designing your Blog
WordPress is one of the most popular blogging platforms, and many huge websites and popular bloggers use this system. You should also consider starting your blog with WordPress. There are literally thousands of designs and themes you can choose for your blog.
It is important, though, to choose a simple and clean design. Your readers will be interested more in the content you deliver than focusing on the design elements of your blog. Instead you should be focusing on getting a good and unique logo.
If you take a look to the top websites or blogs, you will realize that most of them have a very basic design (white background, one or two main colors). To compensate the minimalist design, you can include beautiful images into your content. A high quality, suggestive image can add more value to the content than a heavy blog design. I recommend Themeforest for getting a professional blog theme, but you can also use a free theme too.
Driving Traffic to Your Blog
Why write great content if nobody reads it? The last challenge you have to face is driving traffic to your blog. Marketing is a long and ongoing process. You will not get hundreds or thousands of readers overnight, but this will come slowly.
As mentioned before, you can write content for other blogs and ask in exchange for a backlink and promotion. Usually you are allowed to include an author bio at each of your article you write to other popular websites. Try to pick websites that are more popular than yours, because the potential of getting more readers is higher. But do not neglect small blogs either, because these can also bring you few constant readers.
Social media is another way to get more traffic. Create a community around your blog and connect with people. Ask your fans and followers to share your content in order to get even more traffic.
When you can afford spending a good amount of money on promotion, you can buy traffic too. Paid traffic can be expensive, so you make enough money to afford paying for traffic.
Most bloggers focus on SEO and other free traffic generation methods.
Now, I think you have learned enough and you are ready to create your blog. The success of your blog is highly dependent on the above mentioned elements, but there are not enough for success. You will need great writing skills (or you can learn and improve blogging) and a good hosting provider is also essential. For creating and hosting your WordPress blog, I highly recommend BlueHost. This company provides great hosting service, expert support and solutions to grow your website.
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