4 Easy Steps to Start a Blog
I am so excited you stumbled upon this post! If you are here, you might be teetering on starting a blog, but you have so many unanswered questions...
The important thing to remember is you are not going to have everything figured out when you start.
You never will. That's why you need to jump in and learn as you go. It's very much trial and error.
I created this post for you to have the basics of starting a blog so that you can finally make your dream of blogging a reality! Let me just start off by saying I absolutely love blogging - It has allowed me to grow in many ways, and I have met some wonderful people because of it. These are just a few of the things that you have to look forward to if you dive into the world of blogging.
Step 1: Find Your Niche
When I say "find your niche," I am essentially saying find what you are passionate about. If you are passionate about fitness and health, then have that be the initial focus of your blog. Your posts could, for example, center around the most effective pre-workout supplements or the 9 best beach body workouts. I am positive that there are thousands of blogs out there that fall under that category, but if you are really passionate about what you are talking about, people will be drawn to you.
The key to finding your niche is identifying who it is that you want reading your blog, and focusing on those things that they care about. The more you find your niche, the more popular your blog will be as your audience will start to form.
Finding your niche can take some time, so don't beat yourself up.
When you are thinking about what you want to focus on, you can find yourself in a position like I did, and try to have your feet in everything. The starting point of my blog was affordable fashion, then I liked sustainable fashion, followed by that I wanted to focus on healthy recipes and workouts. After experimenting and watching my analytics, I saw that my audience was more interested in affordable fashion so I chose that as my focus. In focusing on that one topic, I was able to produce better content and provide more for my readers versus writing something halfway because I am spread thin.
Step 2: Find a Platform
After you have found your niche - or you are starting to develop one - find a platform that suits you. Platforms are the different types of hosting sites that you can start a blog on. There are many different options for a blogger to host their site, but to keep things simple and less overwhelming, I will provide a few of my favorites.
- Beautiful templates that will make your website look professional
- Mobile-friendly platform that allows you to edit your site for mobile use separately
- E-commerce option (Stripe)
- Easy-to-use for admin of site regardless of graphic design skills
- SEO friendly (I will be talking about this another time, but you should research this term)
- Simple structure allows for easy use
- SEO friendly
- Customization and templates are readily available
- Low start-up cost for premium membership
- Ran by google
- Fine tuned service with limited tools for specific details
- Limited set of templates
- Secure server
In reviewing these three platforms, I am not dismissing other platforms as being right for you. Matter of fact, many bloggers have found great success in using YouTube or even Tumblr! These are just the three platforms that I am most familiar with. I started out using WordPress because it seemed to be the easiest platform to navigate, but as I wanted to customize things more and develop more of an overall website, I transferred everything over to Squarespace. I still highly suggest you do more research outside of this post to determine the right fit for you!
Step 3: Drive Consistent Content
After you have followed the last two steps, you are probably ready to create your first post! At this point, you have started to find your niche and you have developed a home for your blog through a platform. This is the most important tip to remember throughout your time blogging, whether you have been at it for 10 days or 10 years!
Write, write, and write some more.
In order to know what direction you want to go or see what your audience likes, you need to put something out there. The biggest problem that bloggers can face is a stone cold wall called writer's block. This term is coined to be something negative and a hindrance to your blogging. Don't look at it that way. Take this so called writer's block and write about it. Posting content is going to allow your reader's to engage with you, even when you are not at your career peak of creativity. If anything, this allows your readers to see you as a real person and not just a methodical typewriter.
In all honesty, I would say that right now I am at a turning point in my blogging career where I often get writer's block and instead of walking away from writing, I write more. It is a game changer that allows you to experience small wins in the midst of the many failures.
Step 4: Network
Upon entering the blogging world, you will meet lots of people both in-person and virtually. Meeting people has been one of the greatest rewards of blogging. Often times you will be invited to various events, go on coffee dates and venture out for exciting photo shoots!
Networking opens doors.
When you develop relationships in your blogging community and get to know each other on a personal level, you will be surprised to see all of the opportunities that become available. You will be exposed to people that share some of your same passions, and tremendous relationships can emerge from this. Matter of fact, some of my dear friends got married because they met each other through networking when they were thousands of miles apart! Networking does take work, like any relationship. You have to be vulnerable and sometimes go out on a whim. You also have to be okay with rejection. I have found great success in the moments where I have put myself out there by sending a message I thought would never even be opened, to then receive a lengthy response with lots of resources. You are representing your blog and business, so it's important to make connections and put yourself out there.
At this point, you hopefully grabbed something from this blog post! If there is one thing that I wish you grabbed, it's that you can do this. If you are passionate about something and you wish to share it with others, blogging is a great way to do it. It's also something that you can take a step back from and be proud of! Ultimately have fun with it and see where it takes you. I am so excited for you to experience the joys of blogging.
-The Burb Girl