Thinking about starting a blog?
Do it! Do it! Chanting makes it happen!
Starting my blog in 2017 was easily one of my best decisions of my life. It has opened up a whole new outlet of creativity, connected me with hilarious and inspiring writers, and created a new business. In short, I love it.
If you’ve been thinking of starting a blog I’d love to help! Consider me your blogging basics tour guide. Below are blogging resources that have helped me navigate this fabulous little world and will help set you off on the right foot. (affiliate links below)
SiteGround – First you need a host for your website. Buy your domain name here at Siteground and set up your hosting. Like any great host, SiteGround makes a really nice spinach dip and has excellent customer service. Pricing starts at $3.95 which I afford by buying the store brand granola bars.
If you are hoping to turn your blog into a business, setting up a self-hosted site through SiteGround instead of using WordPress.com is the way to go. You’ll have more control over the look and feel of your site and can monetize through affiliate marketing and advertisements.
But if you just want to get your feet wet, go with WordPress.com for free!
WordPress.org – The site that lets you build your blog and manage your content. Like the architects in Inception. Kind of. More like Microsoft Word but for the web. Super user friendly, blog themes to make your site look professional, and a community of WordPress bloggers. Two enthusiastic thumbs up.
Finding your voice – Helene Sula has a lot of great blogging advice in her posts and webinars. As a full-time blogger and world traveler, she knows her stuff. Start here for some basics, and then read everything she has ever written on the subject if you get hooked.
Facebook Groups – Find a tribe of like minded bloggers who can support you along the way. Promote your posts, read others’ posts, make connections. It’s a really great community of people who truly just want to see other bloggers succeed.
Yoast – This is techy, but it’s a great techy thing for writing. Yoast is a plugin available once you set up your self-hosted site with WordPress. It essentially tells you if you’re making your writing hard to read or search for. I think of it as a good friend who is willing to say “Um, Bec. That sentence is 400 words, in a passive voice, and is just kind of dumb.”
Canva – Looking to create a pretty pin for your blog post? Canva is a super easy and free tool. Think PowerPoint, but easier.
Stock Photos – Blog posts <3 Pictures. And I don’t always have the right pictures. But these sites do, for $Free.99.
↓ Made in Canva, with a Stock Photo. In 5 minutes.
Money Making Stuff
Affiliate Marketing: I like the idea of finding a way to pay for my hobbies. And getting my side hustle on. You too? Check out some simple affiliate marketing tools. It’s like Ebates, you get paid for marketing stuff from these sites through advertising or linking to a product you are talking about anyways. And it doesn’t cost anyone more money to buy from your link. Cool, cool, cool.
Advertising: I know, I know. No one likes ads up in their grill. But, if you find a way to do them well then you can create a steady stream of income from your blog without annoying your readers. I use Fomo Publishers for advertising and LOVE them. The ads are very small pop ups at the bottom of the screen and tailored to match with your blog niche. Plus, no page view requirements!
Sponsored Posts: Like the idea of working with brands to give your honest opinion and share great products and services with your readers? That’s sponsored posts, yo. Whenever I do a sponsored post it is always, always, ALWAYS, in my own voice and never feels off brand from my other stories. Find opportunities here:
All I ever needed to know about life I learned in kindergarten. Except blogging, they didn’t teach blogging. So I’m learning about that on Pinterest.
Tailwind – Automation station! A lot of my website visitors come from Pinterest – and I don’t even write anything all that useful! So take it from a nonsense blogger, you really can drive traffic from Pinterest. Tailwind auto schedules your pins for you which saves a lot of time. Get a free trial and $15 off if you decide to upgrade after your first 100 pins.
Pin Practical – Monica over at Redefining Mom is a Pinterest ninja. She is a super successful blogger and taught me all kinds of Pinterest stuff. Check her out!
This is How I Blog – I’m pinning new blogging stuff all the time, follow along!
Let me know if you start a blog! I want to read about all your hopes, dreams, and deepest secrets. Or your cheesecake recipe. That too.
With love and blogging enthusiasm,
P.S. While you’re here, come stay a while! Check out the Writing category for more on blogging.