Is there a topic that you know WAY too much about?
It could be that you’re an expert fisherman or something as simple as being a total authority on everything Star Wars or Game of Thrones.
Either way, you should know there is a way to profit from your knowledge (even if you thought it was seemingly useless).
By starting a blog, you can share your expertise, opinions, and interests with the world, and if you play your cards right – you can even make money doing it.
You get out what you put in, so it’s up to you whether you want to pursue being a full-time blogger or want to earn some extra cash on the side.
But isn’t blogging dead? Does anyone even still read blogs anymore?
That’s a common myth, as blogging is still alive and strong today, even alongside AI chatbots, TikTok shorts, and YouTube videos.
In fact, you’ve probably read a blog within the last month or week and probably didn’t even notice.
A staggering 409 million users read WordPress blogs each month, and there are more than 600 million blogs online.
If you’ve Googled a question and quickly found an answer on a professional, well-written website – you’ve consumed a blog post.
By harnessing the power of SEO (search engine optimization), you can propel your blog posts to the top of search results so you can reap the rewards.
Are you seeing dollar signs yet?
Then stick around to learn how to start a successful blog right now.
Developing a New Blog Step-by-Step
Creating a new blog doesn’t have to be a painful process. That’s because there are only a few key steps to knock out before you can start writing and publishing your first post.
However, it’s crucial to plan a few things out before you pick a CMS and pay for a domain name and hosting services.
Also, you’ll want to do your SEO homework beforehand to ensure that your blog topic has a marketable audience and that the competition isn’t too steep.
Here’s a step-by-step process for setting up a new blog.
Step #1: Select a topic or niche
First things first, you need to know what you’re going to write about.
Certain blog topics are more popular than others, which is something you need to take into account.
The highest-grossing blog topics are as follows:
- Food (avg. monthly income $9,169)
- Personal Finance (avg. monthly income $9,100)
- Lifestyle/Mommy (avg. monthly income $5,174)
- Travel (avg. monthly income $5,000)
Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to pick one of these topics to start a successful blog.
However, if your passion and expertise align with one of these groups, you’ll have your work cut out for you (although you’ll still need to find a way to stand out from the competition to build an audience).
Other topics are a bit more niche, meaning they aren’t as mainstream, but that doesn’t mean you can’t build a loyal following with them.
To do so, you’ll need to vet your topic of choice by conducting SEO keyword research, which brings us to the next step.
Step #2: Conduct keyword research
Next, it’s time to check the viability of your chosen blog topic or topics.
How do you do that?
By conducting keyword research!
A keyword is a term or phrase that a user enters into a search engine like Google to find information.
By using a keyword planner tool (like our free offering from The HOTH), you can check the search volume, keyword difficulty (how steep the competition is), and search trends for each topic.
Try entering a few variations of your topic of choice to get a better overview of the interest surrounding it.
If you want to blog about golf, try searching for keywords like ‘golf techniques,’ ‘golf accessories,’ and ‘golf news’ to see what’s out there.
Look for keywords that have high search volume (in the thousands), a relatively low keyword difficulty score (lower than 65%), and a search trend that’s rising (meaning it’s still gaining popularity).
If your topic ideas have these metrics, it’s a strong sign that people want to read what you’re going to write about.
Pro tip: The keyword research phase can also help you refine the core focus of your blog. Going with the golf example, LIV golf news is a keyword with great metrics, which could inspire you to provide the latest LIV championship updates to your readers.
Step #3: Know how you’ll monetize
How do you plan to make money from your blog?
You’ll have quite a few options, including:
- Becoming an affiliate and promoting products from another company
- Displaying digital ads
- Offering coaching/counseling services
- Selling a book
- Online courses
These are all legit ways to make money from blogging; you just need to decide which you’ll use before designing your blog.
Step #4: Choose a CMS, domain name, and hosting provider
Now it’s time to make your blog a reality, which isn’t nearly as difficult as it may sound.
You’ll need to pick a content management system (CMS), as it’s where you’ll draft and publish your blogs online.
After that, you need to pick a domain name and choose a hosting service.
WordPress is one of the most popular CMS platforms today, and it’s completely free since it’s open-source.
On the hosting side, popular platforms include:
Some CMS platforms, like Wix, also feature their own hosting.
The most important part of this step is choosing your blog’s name and domain name.
They need to be:
Don’t hesitate to work some creative magic here, as the more unique your blog name is, the more you’ll stand out from competitors.
Step #5: Design your blog
Now that you’ve got a blog website up and running, it’s time to trick it out with all the bells and whistles.
Besides making your blog look super cool, the colors, style, and layout you choose will serve as your official branding.
Most modern CMS platforms have tons of fully customizable templates that you can use, which serve as fantastic starting points.
From there, you can tweak the colors, fonts, and buttons to your heart’s content.
Step #6: Create an editorial calendar and start writing
Now, all that’s left is to plan out a few months’ worth of content and start writing.
If you run into writer’s block or aren’t sure of a good topic, you can always turn to AI to kickstart your creativity.
AI copywriting tools like Copymatic are excellent secret weapons for bloggers.
Based on a few simple prompts, you can generate entire blog posts that you can customize and add your own voice to.
To plan out your content, inform your strategy with keyword research (much like you did in step #2, but for each post).
Once your first post is done, it’s time to promote it like freaking crazy. Share it on all your social media platforms while including relevant tags, and tell all your friends and family to read it.
After that, you need to monitor your progress using free tools like Google Search Console and Google Analytics. Pay close attention to your average organic traffic and SERP rankings. If you aren’t seeing your desired results, it’s time to return to the drawing board and try something different.
Don’t Wait to Start Captivating Readers Today
Starting a blog is easier than ever in today’s age, and you can even get AI to assist you if you’re drawing a blank.
Moreover, blogging is still highly relevant, and it’s still a great way to make money.
If you need help creating an outstanding blog for your business, don’t wait to check out HOTH X, our managed SEO services.