Starting a blog is easy the hard part is making money with it.
Most bloggers fail to make a profit, ever. Bloggers make losses because they don’t get the basics right.
It is not enough to have a passion and to write about it, marketing is essential, as is focusing on your readers’ needs.
Solve problems and your blog will become popular; put the right strategies in place and you could make money.
Let’s be honest you cannot build a profitable blog for free.
Your minimum investment is in a top level domain name and URL, along with reliable hosting that won’t crash if three visitors land on your content at the same time.
#1. Your Blog URL
Yes, you can build a blog with free domain name if you are happy subdomain like YourBlog.Wordpress.com.
You might be happy to have saved a few dollars, but you have thrown your credibility out of the window.
If you aren’t committed enough to the vision of your blog that you refuse to spend $15 or less on a top level domain name, why should anyone visit your webpages?
You can buy a domain name for $15 per year (you rent it rather than buying it), and it is a worthwhile investment when you consider it is the first impression any would-be visitor gets of your site.
Look for a short domain name that is not in any dictionary, because then you will be the only entry that comes up in Google when anyone searches for you. Examples include; Facebook, Google, Invanto, and Carzone.
#2. High-Quality Web Hosting
Your website is only as good as your hosting.
Many bloggers choose the cheapest hosting on the market, paying $30 a year or less. They then wonder why their website is slow, why support is non-existent, and why their site is being throttled by their cheap host.
You get what you pay for. However, you can get decent hosting for $100 a year that includes fast solid-state drives, instant chat support, and no throttling. The best way to find the hosting you need is to use a hosting comparison site that is based on hundreds of genuine user reviews.
#3. Premium WordPress Theme
Yes, you can use a free WordPress theme from the WordPress.org repository. However, free themes are rarely supported or updated when WordPress updates occur, so they crash when your host auto-updates your WordPress installation.
Free themes that are updated such as Twenty Nineteen are instantly recognizable and tell the world that you are unwilling to invest in a premium theme to make your blog stand out.
#4. Honest Affiliate Links
Affiliate links are one way for bloggers to make money, but many bloggers are dishonest in this area: They fail to abide by FTC guidelines regarding disclosure of their affiliate links.
Tucking your disclosure away on a separate disclosure page, at the bottom of a blog post or using vague language are all inappropriate and could lead to companies refusing to pay your affiliate commission or even prosecution.
You need to tell your readers that you earn a commission if they buy a product after clicking on your link, and that disclosure must be adjacent to the link. You can use a phrase such as, ‘If you buy this service through this link, I am paid a commission.’
#5. Guest Posts to Bring Traffic
If you adopt the ‘Build it and they will come’ philosophy, you are headed for disappointment.
No matter how original or superb your content is, they won’t come unless you promote your posts.
Guest posting on successful blogs in your industry is one of the best ways to get eyes on your content. You will only be successful in getting your posts accepted if you have a site worth linking to, so you will need twenty high-quality posts on your blog before you even attempt to persuade a big site to accept your guest posts.
#6. Start an Email List
Your email list is how you will make money. It is not an instant money-spinner you have to earn your subscribers’ trust and respect before they will even think about taking out their wallets.
There are companies that will allow you to manage a small list without charging but expect to pay monthly fees once your list has more than a few hundred email addresses.
You can make a profit from your blogging activities, but it is not an easy path even if you have the basics like domain name, hosting and WordPress theme right.
Forget ads on your pages as a source of meaningful income: Those days are long gone. The only way to earn a significant amount is by offering services and affiliate products to your email subscribers, and it takes time to earn their trust and to convince them you are not just pushing products at them to earn a few dollars.