I’ve been doing a Blog for a few months now and I wish I knew then what I knew now. The problem with starting a Blog and finding out what to do is there doesn’t seem to be a step by step source in plain direct simple English so I’ve created this one for you. It’s not perfect as its based on what I’ve learned about blogging and making blog money in the past few months and I’m sure there is plenty of improvement, so just use this as a rough guide. A base for information is better than nothing at all and you need to start from somewhere with your feet on the ground. You can use this guide if you just want to blog and aren’t interested in making money or if you want to blog and make money on the side without doing any additional work. Sounds like a good deal, OK! The first part of this guide starts with getting a domain name and if you are already familiar with that, you can skip over and start with Section 2. Please note a more complete revised version of this article with more links is featured in the Blog listed in the Resources Section.
(Optional) Section 1. Registering a Domain For Your Blog
The first thing you need to do is Register a Domain Name for Your Blog. I would suggest you only use a COM domain and try to come up with the shortest simplest name you can come up with, without any dashes or numbers. You’ll find single names have all been taken, so think of a simple phrase or something memorable and you’ll probably find something available after a few hours. I would not recommend using a net, org, etc., no matter what the name because people tend to forget anything but com, and if you use net, chances are people will put a COM instead and you will be giving another site free traffic and losing yours. Once you find a Com that you can register for your blog, I’d go ahead and register it on Godaddy which is very cheap. If you don’t want anyone to know you are the owner of the domain which includes unlisting your name,number,address and email address, it will cost you another $ 10 a year or so for Private Registration, I would suggest doing this to protect your privacy. Basically, the contact info you give them has to match your credit card and financial information. Once you register, make sure you keep a copy of your Godaddy Password #’s in a safe and secure place. You will later need hosting space for your blog site and blogging software which will be coming up in the later chapters. Do not sign with Godaddy Hosting if you want to use the company I recommend for everything including Hosting.
Section 2. AdSense
Google AdSense is the easiest found money you will ever make in your life and there is no expense to you, if you wish AdSense. If you’re not interested in making side money from AdSense, then simply don’t put it on your blog, its up to you. The little Google ads and occasional larger image ads you see on web pages are AdSense. The way AdSense works is you sign up for free for the program and can cancel any time you want and in return Google puts these ads on your Blog/Website. All a person has to do is click an ad on your blog and you will get paid anywhere from 1 cent to possibly $ 10 or more a click. I usually average about 20 cents which ads up if you get 40 clicks a day or so. How much you get paid depends on a variety of things for which you should read AdSense rules and policy. AdSense pays you once you reach the $ 100 mark and then you start again. I’ve made several hundred dollars in a few months which is pretty good for doing no work! Quite simply, the more traffic your blog draws, the more clicks you’ll have and the more money you make. Google is quite strict about the clicks being legit and if they see you violated their program, they may possibly kick you off permanently with no chance for reinstatement, seriously! You need to read their rules and policys a few times for AdSense. The main thing is do not click your own ads and don’t have friends or family do it either and do not ask people to click the ads on your blogs, or you will be kicked off AdSense. The best thing to do is just have them on your site and say nothing. Again make sure you read their policy on what they will allow AdSense on. The Blog software I used already had AdSense in the Program. My blog is linked in the Resources Section.
I will be referring to and giving you a contact address for in Section 4. Most other blogs as far as I know, you have to manually paste the AdSense Codes on the pages. The WordPress Blog program I use doesn’t require it.
Section 3. E-Commerce on Your Blog
I use a program called The Easy Store that’s a part of my Blog or Vice Versa. The Easy Store basically lets you set up a niche store of any or all of Amazon’s products and for any products purchased you make a 4-6% commission as a general rule paid direct from Amazon. The Easy Store isn’t free but it will probably cost you if you have them do a logo for you $ 200. Without a logo probably around $ 120. The software isn’t complicated and the Software with the Blog software will be installed for free by Zeus Design who will go over everything with you and be available for technical help. My Gifts Shop in Resources is an Easy Store.
Section 4. Getting the Blog (WordPress) Software and AdSense, E-Commerce and Hosting If You Wish
As mentioned previously, I use Zeus Design to do everything for me and I am very happy with everything they’ve done for me. This isn’t meant as an infomercial as its my unsolicited non compensated endorsement of a company I’m very happy with who does excellent,fast, quality reliable work and are pleasant to deal with. Feel free to deal with other companies, I can only tell you what works for me and your welcome to deal with them. If you want a similar WordPress Blog set up like mine with AdSense installed, an Easy Store as part of the Blog and Hosting, I recommend you contact Zeus Design.
The price in my opinion is quite reasonable and affordable. Or as I said, feel free to go through different companies.
Section 5. Once You Have Your Blog Online
Here are some of the things I’ve learned if you want better traffic. Remember this won’t happen overnight.
1. Always use a picture or illustration on each of your Blogs. I made the mistake of not doing this the first few months and it cost me dearly. Try to use whenever possible something that will catch someones eye in a good way. I invested $ 30 in software that lets me merge 2 pictures as one master picture which I couldn’t do without in my blog called Picture Merge Genius.
2. Always make the Title of your Blog as exciting and eye catching as possible with important key words.
3. Write whenever possible on current, new and exciting things and ideas and people that are on the news and in the public’s minds as opposed to things and memories from your life unless it applies to everyone else. I read the news online about 10 times a day for anything interesting. The Internet is your main news source. For instance, I found a photo of Sara Palin pregnant 20 years ago and I put it next to a picture of her supposedly pregnant with Trig and made that into a separate Blog with my opinion of the whole thing, and I got about 15,000 readers. Mind you, I just got lucky but that beats hardly any readers writing about my favorite HDTV Model! It will probably take you a few months to pick this up. Just remember while you and your family may love your personal stories and your philosophy of life, most people could care less.
4. Try to avoid alienating a large group of people if you don’t have to. I wrote many blogs on Sarah Palin that were not favorable and I’m sure I alienated many people from reading my blog again. On the other hand, I also gained my readers. This was something I had no choice in. However I was going to write a Blog about the kinds of people one shouldn’t date if you don’t want hassles but didn’t publish it as I figured it would alienate too many of my women readers who are a valuable audience.
5. Try to be as prolific as possible. When I originally started, I thought I’d write 3-5 blogs a week. Instead I’m writing over 15-20 or so a week, 2-4 daily. I find its best for me to start writing as soon as an idea comes to me. As I said, the beauty of blog writing is the pieces don’t have to be that long. The more prolific you are the chance you’ll get a larger audience and make more money!
6. For your tags as well as AdSense use Google Keyword Tool. Make sure you set this show it shows average CPC in descending order and remember there are 2 parts in this column! Under choose columns pick ALL.
7. It you own any other e-commerce sites like me, list them after your blog ends as people might go to these sites.
8. Log on and Register for technorati Each time you publish a blog ping it on technorati. Just use the blogs original URL not the individual URL of the blogs post you just published.
9. Log on and Register for Digg Each time you publish a blog ping it on Digg. Use the blog you just posted URL which you get by going clicking its title on your blogs home page.
10. Log on and Register for Reddit Each time you publish a blog ping it on Digg. Use the blog you just posted URL which you get by going clicking its title on your blogs home page.
11. Get listed on Feedburner
12. Most Pings I get are spam requests. I am not currently accepting any.
13. I do accept comments.
14. Tags serve as Keywords for indexing in Browsers like Google.
15. I would have a short excerpt summary for each blog
16. You can have more than 1 categories for a blog as applicable.
17. If you use the Hosting Package from Zeus (Madfire) you can check any time how many visits to your blog and see which blogs get the best traffic and which get the worst.