Picture shows post's title being how to start a blog that makes you money.

How to Start a Blog that Makes you Money: Step-by-Step Beginner’s Guide

The world of blogging offers a unique opportunity to share your expertise, connect with like-minded individuals, and create a whole community. 

The best about it?

Everyone with basic knowledge on how to optimize and monetize a blog can eventually start a profitable blog that makes you money. 

Blogging gives you the chance to turn your hobby into a profitable income source with nearly endless potential to grow making it the perfect business model for each and every one of you!

That’s why I want to give on my knowledge on how I created “ProfitPursuers” so you can start a profitable blog that makes you money yourself!

Apart from blogging there are other ways to make money from the comfort of your sofa! Just click here to know more.

Table of Contents

Starting a Profitable Blog

Why You Should Not Start a Blog

It is kind of weird to start a post  on how to build a profitable blog with reasons why you should not start a blog.

But for me it is important to speak about some aspects of blogging that might be not visible for beginners. I just want to avoid that you have wrong expectations and eventually getting disappointed when starting your own blog.

1) Do not start a blog for quick money

If making money quickly from your blog is your primary goal you should better stay away from blogging.

Many gurus will most likely tell you how you can earn thousands of dollars within the first month of you being blogging.

Forget it. That’s not how the game works.

The truth: Especially in the first months blogging you will most likely not earn a single penny.

That’s why your initial motivation to start a profitable blog should be your passion. Only with passion you can motivate yourself to constantly create new content and help your audience.

But: If you managed to overcome the first hard months and kept posting new content consistently, trust me, (a lot of) money will come automatically!

2) Do not start a blog when you not want to learn 

Building a profitable blog over time will mainly require two things: patience as well as constant learning and improving.

In your first posts you won’t perfectly optimize your blog for SEO or struggle to create compelling and engaging content. But don’t worry! You also won’t play Beethoven’s sonata on the piano perfectly at first try, right? 

Even though I am now several month into blogging, I still learn a bunch of new things each and every day. 

You should just be aware and ready to learn new things on your journey of starting a profitable blog.

Potential to Make Money Blogging

But can you still make money blogging?

Let us have look at two success stories:

  1. Adam Enfroy

Annual Income (2020): $812,718

Started his blog in 2019, Adam Enfroy skyrocketed his blog to hundreds of thousands dollars of annual income.

This quick development is rarely seen and underlines the immense potential to make money blogging.

2. Michelle-Schroeder Gardner (Making Sense of Cents)

Annual Income (estimated): $1 million to $2 million 

Michelle-Schroeder Gardner has started her blog in 2011 and attracted over 20 million people since then.

In her blog, she specialized herself to give saving and making money tips. 

With her blog, Gardner represent one of the biggest finances blogs out there. 

These two success stories are supposed to show you that consistent blogging while pay off one day!

So can you still make money blogging?

YES!

When consistently giving people a reason to read your blog the sky is the limit for your blogging income!

How to Start a Blog

Fortunately, starting a profitable blog does not mean you have to follow an endless-seeming list of steps. You can break down the whole starting process in simple steps:

1) Pick a Niche

2) Decide on a Blogging Platform

3) Choose a Web Hosting

4) Purchase a Domain Name

5) Open Pre-Installed WordPress 

6) Start designing with Themes and Plugins 

7) Add Essential Pages

8) Write your First Blog Post

9) Get Traffic to Your Site

10) Make Money

1. Pick a Niche

Before bringing your blog to life, it is essential to first think about your blog theoretically. 

A niche is the general field you and your blog posts will be dealing with. 

It is vital to take time for this decision as it affects and limits your future blog. In your decision-making you should consider three things:

  1. Expertise 
  2. Audience
  3. Profitability 

Unless you want keep blogging as a hobby, you should also choose a profitable niche. And the fact that you clicked on this post tells me that you want to make money in the future. 

What is a profitable niche?

These are niches with a great potential to earn money with in long-term. 

The following niches are considered to be profitable:

  • Finances 
  • Food
  • Health
  • Self-Improvement
 
Now let me give you an example of a niche that is not profitable. 
 
Imagine you are very passionate about carrots and you decide to start a carrot blog. In your blog you outline each and every aspects on carrots: types of carrots, planting carrots, carrot history, health benefits and interviews with carrot enthusiasts. 
 
Maybe you find some people that share your passion about carrots. But you will never be able to make a lot of money with this niche. 
 
That is an example of a niche that is not profitable. 

So when choosing your niche, pay attention to passion and profitability. 

2. Decide on a Blogging Platform

With this step we are getting your blog nearer to reality: It is time to think about a blogging platform. 

A blogging what!?

Well, to be able to customize your website with tools and features, and to manage your blog, you need a so-called blogging platform. 

Even though I can only recommend one platform type (more later on), I want to give a short overview: 

Self-hosted:

With self-hosted blogging platforms you are given the opportunity to customize your blog in nearly every way possible. 

Self-hosted blogging platforms are great for those who want to be in full control of their website. Being in full control also gives you more opportunities to monetize and scale your blogging business.

There is pretty much only one go-to self-hosted platform out there: WordPress.org

Pros:

#1 Full Control

#2 Customization

#3 Scalability and Monetization 

Cons:

#1 More Responsibility

Hosted:

Hosted blogging platforms are websites that give you a space on their own platform to create and publish a blog.

They provide you with a domain name (like e.g. profitpursuers.com), with a hosting and a software to design your blog. That makes things a lot easier.

While all these features sound good, you technically do not 100% own the website. 

This can get you in trouble when, for example, the platform thinks you are violating its terms of service.

On top, these platforms usually limit customization features.

Hosted blogging platforms include Wix, Shopify, Squarespace and WordPress.com.

Pros:

#1 Simplicity 

#2 Managed Hosting 

Cons:

#1 You do not own the site

#2 Limited Customization Options

#3 Platform Dependency 

#4 Monetization Restrictions

My Recommendation:

If you plan to build a personal brand with your blog (what’s most likely your goal), I strongly recommend you to use WordPress.org. 

Why?

Reasons Why You Should Use WordPress.org:

#1 Huge Community -> If there is a problem, you’ll find people who can help you

#2 Full Ownership -> You’re in full control

#3 Huge Customization and Monetization Options 

Maybe you have noticed that I spoke about two kind of WordPress(es): WordPress.org and WordPress.com.

Make sure to use WordPress.org, since WordPress.com is a self-hosted blogging platform. 

That’s not what you want.

3. Choose a Web Hosting

Using self-hosted blogging platforms requires you to have a web hosting.

What is web hosting?

A web host is a company that provides the space on its servers to store your blog – it is the place where your blog lives.

Web hosting makes the blog accessible to the world.

See it as a home for your blog, in which all of your data and blog posts are safely stored for you.

Having a solid web hosting is vital when creating a blog. No hosting, no blog!

Hosting recommendation:

There are two blog hosting companies that I can recommend to you:

A: Hostinger

Picture shows Hostinger as a web hosting platform to start a blog.

The first of which, is called Hostinger. That’s the web hosting I use for this blog as well, by the way.

Hostinger has an affordable pricing and is easy-to-use.

It has a great dashboard equipped with all functionalities necessary to control your blog.

Also, something I really like, is Hostinger‘s great 24/7 customer service making it a great choice for beginners.

B: BlueHost

Picture show BlueHost as another web hosting platform to start a blog.

BlueHost is the second, also very popular, web hosting company. Similarly to Hostinger, it offers great and reliable hosting services for your personal blog.

 In terms of service and ease of use both Hostinger and BlueHost are on par with each other. 

To make the decision between Hostinger and BlueHost a bit easier, I created the following table providing you with the most essential criteria for both platforms.

4. Find and Purchase a Domain Name

It’s now getting more exciting as you turn your ideas into reality. 

After having decided which web hosting to use, you now want to find and purchase a domain name. 

A domain name is the address of your website. It is was people type into their web browsers to find and visit your website. 

Your personal domain name should represent your brand name since your domain name is usually the same as your blog’s name. 

Therefore, choosing the right domain name is an important branding decision that requires time. 

Brainstorm a few ideas and try to have the following points in mind:

  • Brandable -> something that is good to remember (your or your business’ name)
  • Niche Relevance -> People should have a clue about the blog’s topic by looking at its domain
  • Avoid numbers and hyphens 
  • Use .com -> .com is still the most familiar extension for people 

This blog’s domain is, for example, profitpursuers.com.

Why did I choose this domain?

Because it is great in reflecting what my blog is about – striving for financial freedom by giving you guidance and advice to do so! 

So the bottom line is to find a domain name that reflects what you are writing about in your blog! That’s at least the theory.

Keep in mind that this is no rule to success. You’ll find many other successful blogs that ignored any of the points listed. 

Be creative, it is your blog!

Checking the Availability 

Each and every domain name can be only owned by a single person – domain names are unique. 

Makes sense, right?

Just imagine what would happen if hundred people buy YouTube.com – pure chaos. 

So you want a name that is still available. 

Fortunately, there is an easy way to verify this. 

Go ahead and google for Name.com.

Picture shows a service to check the availability of domain names. This is an important step to start a blog.

Just type your ideas into to search bar and you’ll see whether or not your domain name is still available.

For purchasing your domain name, I’d recommend the website NameCheap

Picture shows NameCheap as a platform to buy domain names.This is an important step to start a blog.

Why NameCheap?

NameCheap is:

  • secure -> the most crucial point to run your blog 
  • affordable -> relatively low prices 
  • good at customer service -> 24/7 via live chat in case you’re in trouble 
 
To buy your domain name, just type the name you have checked beforehand, into the search bar and click “add to cart”.
 
Then, similar to any other online purchase, choose your preferred payment method. 
 
Now you are an official domain name owner! Congrats!
 
You can now log in into your web hosting platform and add your domain name. You’ll find this option in your dashboard.

5. Open Pre-Installed WordPress

When choosing to go with one of the web hosting platforms I mentioned above, WordPress is already pre-installed for you. That’s great about it: It can’t get more simple.

 Once you open WordPress you will then see a dashboard similar to this:

The dashboard is your control panel: You can pretty much manage everything from here.

This includes: 

  • adding pages 
  • adding and writing posts
  • adding plugins 
  • setting up menus 
  • managing comments 
  • general blog settings 

I think WordPress is pretty easy to navigate – at least for casual users like you and me!

Here is a video that explains the dashboard in more-depth – in case you need further assistance!

6. Start Designing with Themes and Plugins

That’s where it gets exciting: Making your bog your own. 

With WordPress you can bring any idea to life with the right themes and plugins. 

But let us start at the beginning: 

What are themes and plugins is?

Themes

Themes determine how your blog looks like. It is like the facade of a house.

Nowadays it is getting more popular to choose themes that are plain and simple. That’s because it offers you maximum flexibility. 

I would recommend you to do the same. 

Choose themes that are simple so you can customize them the way you want. 

Plain and simple themes include: 

  • Astra
  • Kadence
  • Phlox

To add a theme to your site, click on “Appearance” and then on “Themes”

You can now click on “Add New” just next to the heading “Themes”. 

Make sure to install and activate the theme. That’s it!

Plugins on the other hand, are tools for your blog’s functionality.

There are plugins for nearly every task you can imagine:

  • Spam Filter
  • SEO Plugins
  • Security Plugins
  • Contact Form Plugins
  • Table of Content Plugins
  • Mailing Lists and opt-in form plugins

The list goes on and on. 

Make sure to install a basis amount of plugins to cover spam protection, security and SEO. 

Adding new plugins is as simple as adding themes. 

To add plugins, click on “Plugins” on your left-sided dashboard and then on “Add New”. 

In the search bar you can now look for plugins. Once you found one, click “Install” and “Activate”.

An excellent page and post builder plugin is “Elementor”. I use this plugin for this page as well and can really recommend you to use it.

If you want me to make a post about the most essential plugins for your blog, just let me know in the comment section down below!

7. Add Essential Pages

Now is is time to create some content for your page. 

Let us start by creating a solid foundation. To do so, we have to add some basic pages.

These are, for example: 

  • Home
  • Blog
  • Contact
  • About

You do not necessarily include all of these pages but a home and blog page is an absolute must-have. 

Everything else is optional but is recommendable to build trust with your audience. 

For adding pages, just follow these steps: 

  • Go to “Pages” -> “Add New”
  • Enter your title name (e.g. “Contact Me”)
  • Write your content using Gutenberg blocks (click on plus)
  • Press “Publish” once you are finished 
Picture shows how to add essential pages as a step to start a blog.

8. Write your First Blog Post

You made it! We are now officially entering the fun part!

You are ready to create your first blog post. 

And the best about it. It works just the same as for pages. 

  • Click on “Posts” -> “Add New”
  • Enter title and content using Gutenberg blocks (click on plus) 
  • Press “Publish” when everything is ready 
Picture shows how to create your first blog posts.

Let me give you some extra tips so that your blog posts turn out great. 

  • Add Value: Try to help people with valuable content 
  • Be unique: Do not write as any other does. Find other perspectives and come up with unique ideas
  • Optimize for SEO: Install SEO Plugins (e.g. RankMath) to do on-page SEO

9. Get Traffic to Your Site

Now let us go back to the making money part mentioned at the very beginning of this post. 

And yes, it is possible to make a lot of money blogging. 

The most essential step to start earning money blogging is getting traffic to your site.

That’s why we should have a look at ways to get traffic to your site.

I created a full beginner’s guide on how to increase website traffic. Just click here.

In short, there are some basics to start with:

On- and off-page SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and refers to everything you can do to rank higher in search results. 

Try to implement both on- and off-page SEO techniques to see significant traffic increase.

High-Quality Content

Creating high-quality content is essential. Why?

Well, people tend to follow your blog in the long term, once they consider you helpful. 

So when writing your posts, be as insightful as possible to see traffic growth. 

Social Media

With users rising constantly ,social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest have a great potential to get traffic to your site. 

Create an account reflecting your brands identity and publish posts consistently. 

Try to stick to your niche, so people know for what they should follow you.

Make Money

Once you have succeeded in increasing your website traffic there are different ways to turn your efforts into cash!

  • Affiliate Marketing: Promote other people’s products and earn a commission for each sale
  • Displaying Ads: Sign up for ad networks and start displaying ads on your website 
  • Selling Products and Services: Create own products such as online courses and coaching. This method is very lucrative but requires expertise and experience.

Consider reading the post on how to monetize your blog in 6 proven ways.

The Takeaway

At the end of each of my posts I provide a short takeaway. Just to make sure you remember the things you learned today! 

Before making your blog reality make sure to think about:

  • your niche -> passion and profitability 
  • blogging platform -> self-hosted with WordPress.org
  • Web Hosting -> Hostinger or Bluehost
  • Purchase a domain name on NameCheap
  • Install WordPress and choose your theme and plugins 
  • add the most important pages
  • Start writing your first post

Increase your traffic through:

  • SEO
  • Valuable Content
  • Social Media

Use this traffic to monetize through:

  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Displaying Ads
  • Selling Products and Services

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, starting a blog is a great chance for pursuing your passion and earn money from home.

I hope I could give you enough insights so that you can finally start your blog today!

Tags: No tags

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *