An Easy Guide on how to start a Money Making Blog in 2018

Looking for a simple, easy guide on how to start a blog in 2018?

You’ve come to the right place!

Every creative person can make money sitting at home. How?

By having a blog.

The benefits of having a Blog.

1. A blog helps you gain big clients.

No matter how talented or skilled you are as an artist/designer/illustrator, it will be difficult for you to establish yourself in your field if you don’t have a blog. Having a blog makes you an expert. People will read your blog and want to know more. They will want to know your story. What makes you tick. How you create art. How you do anything!

And having your own website helps you reel in clients. Whether you are a writer/artist/blogger, your blog becomes your very own resumé/portfolio. How you communicate shows how much authority you have in your field.

And this is the secret sauce to bagging clients!

Not only does having a blog look professional, but you make it very easy for your potential clients to find you and contact you.

After launching my website and continuing to blog, I slowly watched my email inbox explode with Illustration requests.

The process is simple. People read your blog. They fall in love with your writing.  So, they hop on over to your About Page to find out who you are. If they like what they see, they explore your services (to know what you’re offering) and finally contact you to hire you!

2. A blog makes you money even when you sleep.

I’ve had a blog before this and I was earning enough money to pay my rent and support my husband and dog.

It was goooooood money.

No doubt, when you initially start your blog, you have to put a lot of effort to get it off the ground by writing consistently and writing damn good content.

And if you blog consistently and efficiently (by having strong goals in mind), you will be minting money within 6 months, I promise.

How my Blog made me my first $1000

I get a lot of emails every week asking me tips related to Blogging and it brings back so many memories of when I first started. I started my first blog in 2015 as a hobby. It was called Mary Angela Designs. However, it doesn’t exist anymore. And for a whole year, I made peanuts. Well, not peanuts. Because peanuts… you can sell. I made zero anything.

And on October 11th, 2016, I’d had enough. I made a plan to monetize my blog. And I did.

It didn’t take me longer than 2 weeks to earn my first $300 when a woman hired me to create some doodles for her. I started offering my services on my website and also signed up to be an Amazon Affiliate.

In November, I had earned my first $1000 through my illustrating services and products.

I took a long break in December to modify my website in order to cater to the right crowd.

And guess what happened?

My page-views and subscribers doubled. I got 2000 subscribers in less than 30 days which resulted in a boost in my amazon affiliate sales.

In other words, I was able to make an income doing something I loved – creating.

So, there you have it – the benefits of blogging.

Enough about me!

Let’s learn how to make a money-making blog in 2018.

How to start a money-making Blog in 2018 | This step-by-step tutorial on starting your blog is what you need. Do you want to start a blog? | Start a WordPress blog | start a website | start a blog with Bluehost | Beginner guide to starting a blog | If you're not sure how to start a blog or choose a good web host, this step-by-step tutorial will help you make a blog.

This post includes affiliate links to products I truly (from the bottom of my heart) recommend, meaning at no extra cost to you, I may earn a small percentage which I will use to buy a super supreme meat pizza that I will binge on with my husband while watching Netflix.

1. Know what you want to blog about

Starting a blog is super easy. But continuing to blog consistently for as long period of time is unbelievably hard.

This is one of the reasons why a lot of bloggers fail.

They enthusiastically start a blog and churn out blog posts faster than you can say “cheese cracker”, and within a few months there’s not a peep from them.

You stop receiving their emails. Their last updated blog post is 3 months ago. And you never hear from them again.

Why?

Because they were blogging just to earn a quick buck.

They didn’t write about what they were interested in.

There was no zing.

The zing is important, hon. Because the zing is what fuels your writing. And if you don’t have a zing, you don’t have a blog.

The 2 Parameters for choosing your Blog Niche

1. Your blogging niche should be something you’re passionate about. To discover your niche, ask yourself, if this is something you’re passionate about. Think back on all the blog posts you like to read. I tend to read a lot about art, creativity and blogging because that is what I’m interested in. And although I can’t call myself an expert, I know quite a bit in that area. Hence, my blog is about art, creativity and blogging. You see?

2. There has to be a high demand in your blogging niche. Once you pick a blogging niche, come up with 3-5 ideas of your first few blog posts. Search these ideas in google. If you’re getting a couple of 100 thousand searches, then you’re good. It means you have a strong base of readers who are going to love your blog.

There ya go! You are now ready to start your blog.



First, you will need a Domain and Hosting.

If you’re unaware of the terms domain and hosting, a domain name is your website URL. For egs: (www.facebook.com or www.yahoo.com or www.straycurls.com) and a hosting is where your website is going to live – imagine it as a house where your little blog is going to stay.

Now, first we are going to name your Blog baby and then buy it a house to stay in.

1. Choosing a Domain Name

In the first step, we are only going to choose a domain name, not buy it.

Skip this step if you’ve already decided what your website is going to be called and you’re absolutely sure the domain is available.

Go to GoDaddy and type in your URL just to see if it’s available. If it’s not, pick something else.

Don’t think too hard when you’re coming up with a domain name. My domain name is Stray Curls because I mostly create curly hair comics. It doesn’t really need to be a hundred percent related to your field.

If you’re finding it difficult to think of something creative, stick your name. A lot of great bloggers I know keep their name as their domain name. And it’s unique!

People are going to love your blog no matter what your domain name is, because they’re coming to read your content, not gawk at your blog’s URL.

2. Choosing a good and reliable Hosting

Why free hosting sucks

Never make a free website. *stomps the ground with her giant clown feet*

No!

The main problem with free hosting is, your website is going to look like this – wwww.cupcakemania.wordpress.com or www.cupcakemania.weebly.com – ugh.

When you attract readers, they’re going to take one look at that URL and go, “Eh, this lady can’t even spend money on a decent website, she’s obviously not a professional. I’m outta here!”

I know this, because when I was a teenager, I had a tiny blog that looked just like that. And I couldn’t figure out why my blog’s traffic was so low!

If you’re serious about making money with your blog, then please take the first step to making a professional blog.

*whips out her pokéball*

I choose you, Bluehost!

I absolutely love Bluehost because it’s quick, efficient, cost-effective and reliable.

Not only do they have 24/7 customer support, but they also give you a money-back guarantee if you’re not happy. Now, that’s confidence!

Apart from this, you can install WordPress in just one click!

And the best benefit of all: You get a free domain! Which is why I didn’t tell you to buy a domain earlier.

Why buy a domain when Bluehost is allowing you to pick one for free?

Why Bluehost is good for making a blog

Now, since this is a step-by-step tutorial, click here to visit Bluehost and I’ll guide you through the whole process of starting a blog.

Baby steps.

How to make a money making blog by buying a good hosting

Go ahead, and click the Get Started Now button. I’ll wait over here.

Okay… done?

Choose a package.

If you’re just starting out, you can choose the basic plan and slowly move your way upward as and when you feel your website needs more space or grows a little bigger.

Type in your domain name.

Now you’re going to have to pick a domain name if you already haven’t done it before.

The good news is, if you’ve already purchased a domain, you can click the second option. If not, then think of a good and suitable domain name (if you haven’t already) and select the first.

If however you can’t think of a domain name, that’s not an issue at all! You’ll get this pop up.

So, you can buy the hosting, and give a name to your blog baby later.

Did you know that I had no name for 8 days after I was born? Yep. My parents couldn’t decide on what to name their first born child. To think that they had 9 months to come up with one…

After this, you will be asked to enter your payment and address details.

Entering Account Information

Below, you will have to choose your package details.

The best option according to me is either 36 months or 60 months because although this is a lot of money to pay upfront, it’s a huge saving in the future. You only end up paying 5.95 per month which means, you end up saving almost 2 dollars every month or $24 in one year!

Entering Payment Details

Below, you will have to enter your payment details.

After you’re done, click the little box to agree to all the terms and conditions (that no one reads anyway) and click on submit.

Phew!

On the next page, you’re going to find some add-ons. You don’t really need these for your blog, so just click on “complete”

All done!

Congratulations! You’ve just purchased your domain and hosting. And you’ve finished the first step of building your own website.

You should get this page.

Welcome to BluehostNow, set a good, strong password, until the bar shows green and login to your hosting c-panel.

bluehost-cpanel-details

 

3. Installing WordPress

Now, click on “Install WordPress.”

Once your WordPress is installed, just go to your address bar and click on www.yoururlgoeshere.com/wp-admin/ and enter your Username and Password.

Once you’re in, you will be able to see your Website’s Dashboard! This, sweetheart is where all the magic happens!

4. Choosing a pretty WordPress Theme

Once you’re in your Website’s Dashboard, you’ll need to put a theme. A theme is like a dress. You can change it whenever you feel like, make modifications, accessorize, and look all glamorous to suit your style.

Might I suggest Madame, that you start with Elegant Themes as they are a woman’s first choice when building a beautiful and powerful website theme. Divi is personally my favorite.

Elegant Themes is constantly updating and adding new themes to their library. They also have wonderful customer support. This is most important when you are buying a theme for your WordPress Website.

Because if you are unable to figure out something, you don’t want to be left in the dark. Their Support Team will help you with any doubts or difficulties you may have. And Elegant Themes is very simple and easy to use. Especially if you’re a newbie blogger with no prior website building experience.

Inspirational Print - Eat Sleep Blog Repeat

5. Installing must-have plugins on your Blog Baby.

Akismet – You’re going to be getting a lot of spam comments as a newbie blogger. I speak from experience, yo. Akismet makes sure that this doesn’t happen. It kicks all the spam comments in the booty.

Better Click To Tweet – This plugin allows you to add tweets within your Blog Post, meaning your reader can just click on the pre-written tweet and tweet it! Ain’t that awesome? More traffic to you and your blog baby. Woot woot!

Simple Author Box – This will add an author box with all your social media icons on all your posts so you don’t look like an anonymous blogger on your own blog.

Yoast SEO – In order for Google and other websites to find you better, SEO is a treasure in disguise. This plugin helped me get some of my blog posts on to the first page of Google. And this is by far my favorite plugin because it has gained me a lot of blog traffic!

Social Media & Share Icons (Ultimate Social Media) – This is the best social media icons pack I’ve found for the blog sidebar. It’s totally customizable and has tons of options! I was able to upload my own social media icons. 😀

Over time, you will find lots of plugins that will suit your needs.

6. Writing the necessary Pages.

1. Start with your Homepage: When people land on your website, they need to know in less than 5 seconds what your website is about. Make your Homepage unique and pretty. Your Blog is about you and the things you’re passionate about. You can always change the design of your Homepage so that it reflects the real you.

2. About Page: Sometimes when your readers are going through your blog post, they’re going to get curious and want to know who’s the person behind the masterpiece. So, they’re going to peek at your About page. This is by far, the most important page in your Blog.

3. Contact/Reach Me Page: If your readers love you and connect with you, they’re going to want to write you little notes. Have your Contact Page visible so the find it easy to write to you.

7. Publishing quality content.

When you first create your blog, you’re going to be very eager to write a lot of posts and fill your Blog Page with a huge quantity of posts.

Do. Not. Do. That.

Having quantity is undeniably important but quality trumps quantity any day.

This post is my 10th Blog Post. But notice how I’ve taken the time to make it detailed and long. It’s hard work, but it will pay off eventually. And the benefits you reap from a long and helpful blog post is 10 times more than a short blog post with no aim.


READ MORE: 15 THINGS TO WRITE IN YOUR NOTEBOOK TO MAKE YOU A MORE EFFICIENT BLOGGER

Your blog posts need to be detailed. Every blog post you write must have a purpose. It must solve a problem for your readers and in order to become an expert in your niche, you need to show that you care. This means that you need to write content that will have your readers sticking around for more.

How do you write an engaging blog post?

1. Be detailed and solve one problem at a time – Everytime you write a blog post, try and tackle one problem. At the end of the blog post, your reader must feel like they learned something and their lives are just a little bit better because they should be able to take something and put it into action.

2. Write long posts – Although you might feel like you’re repeating things or mincing words, understand that your reader might not be an expert in your field. You need to be able to break things down for them so that they understand what you’re trying to convey. Be thorough in your approach.

3. Listen to your readers. – Your readers and fans are going to write comments or emails to you. They will ask you questions or your thoughts on a certain subject. Use this as a key to come up with more blog post ideas.

4. Add a little personal touch – I cannot stress on this enough. There are lot of helpful posts and tutorials that I’ve read but sometimes, I feel like it’s written by a robot. Your readers want to know the real you behind your Blog. A lot of people might cover the same topic you have. What makes your blog special is the way you tell it. The way you connect the dots. Everybody’s perspective is different. Write from your heart.

5. Have an enticing title – Using relevant keywords is going to help your Blog Post reach the top. For example, if you type “Things to write in a blank notebook” in Google, my post comes up as the third search! It’s had over 30,000 shares and is still responsible for a lot of traffic to my website.

Your Blog Post Image is worth a thousand words – My Blog Post images have a common theme going on, meaning if anyone sees my Blog Post graphic on any social media (irrespective of
who’s shared it), they’re going to know it’s from me. Make sure you have a template and stick to it.
Blog post images must have a common theme to build a better and cohesive brand

 

8. Why you need Content Upgrades and how they’re going to make you money.

A Content Upgrade is a beautiful resource you offer to your readers in exchange for their email. This can be a small poster, checklist, workbook, ebook, a printable, etc. basically anything that you feel confident enough to make (and know will attract followers) in order to get their email addresses.

Using an efficient and Email Marketing System.

ConvertKit is one of my email collecting bad boy machine. Collecting emails is important because once you have a huge list of emails, you can send your followers newsletters every week. These newsletters can include your products, services, helpful information and links to your latest blog posts. This not only establishes you as an expert, but also helps you build a strong connection with people who love your Blog.

USE MY LINK TO GET A FREE TRIAL FOR CONVERTKIT

These followers eventually become your customers because they love you and your products. And when your readers keep coming back to your blog for more resources and helpful information, your pageviews increase – giving you a chance to get more sponsored post deals, and increasing your ad and affiliate revenue.

So, more traffic equals more revenue.

Why I prefer ConvertKit over Mailchimp

When I was first starting out, I used Mailchimp because it’s free for your first 2000 subscribers. But Mailchimp didn’t let me grow and if you have one person subscribed for two different opt-ins, they enter two segments and are counted as 2 people! Meaning, if one person subscribes for 5 different opt-ins on your website they get subscribed to 5 lists, and 1 person counts as 5.

Sneaky lil’ Mailchimp.

So, after a whole year of using Mailchimp and only earning about 2000 followers, I switched to ConvertKit and made over 10 forms to collect email addresses which led me to earn over 2000 additional followers in less than 50 days.

If you’re serious about growing your blog and email list, I urge you choose ConvertKit as your email marketing platform. You’re never going to turn back.

You can use my link to get a FREE trial of ConvertKit.

9. Promote, promote, promote.

1. Social Media is your friend.

Now that you know how to create great quality blog posts and content upgrades/opt-ins to lure in your readers and help them stick around, it’s time to learn the importance of promoting.

You cannot write your blog post and then sit quietly expecting people to find it. Sadly, it doesn’t work that way. I know this, because I did the exact thing during my first 2 months of blogging and got crickets.

When you start out, you’re not going to be getting very good traffic. The key is to be patient and keep promoting on all your social media. Pinterest is responsible for over 90% of my traffic and brings me tons of views.

If you would like to see more blogging tips on your Pinterest Feed, then be sure to follow me so we can be Pinterest buddies!

After Pinterest, the second best Social Media is Instagram. Instagram brings in around 10K pageviews each month.


READ MORE: THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO GAINING 100K FOLLOWERS ON INSTAGRAM AS AN ARTIST

After one month of blogging, you can start recording your stats in a notebook. Keep a notebook aside for coming up with blog post ideas and recording your social media stats.

Ultimately, your time should be divided like this – 25% blog post creation and 75% blog post marketing.

2. Join Blogging communities.

Aside from marketing on social media, keep aside time to join FB groups so that you can be part of a community where you can share your views and get help related to Blogging. It’s nice to also help others because when you offer help and advise to others who were in your shoes 1 year ago, you not only make friends but you also establish yourself as an authority on the subject.

Try and not spam FB groups with links to blog posts unless absolutely necessary or if someone has asked for a resource and you have one.

Hence, by constantly participating in group threads and helping others in your niche, you will be building your online brand identity.

3. Comment on other Blogs.

Whenever you like a blog post, and find it valuable – don’t just leave. Write a comment. Ask a question. Keep the conversation going wherever you go. Not only does this help you build relationships with bloggers, but it also makes you visible on the Blogging Map.

Comment on at least 10-12 blog posts every single day. This will help you get noticed in the blogging community. Make sure your comments are detailed and well-thought of.

10. Monetizing your Blog.

If you’ve started a blog, let it be out of passion for blogging. Monetizing your blog should not be your first priority, otherwise your blog is not going to be successful. Your key motive is to connect with people, put your words out into the world and make a name for yourself.

When do I start monetizing my blog?

For the first couple of months (at least 4-5), don’t focus too much on making money. Just focus on creating good quality blog posts and putting your name out there. Keep writing and promoting and adding valuable information on your pages and posts. You need to have blog to promote, meaning you need to have at least 20 blog posts on your blog before you actually start seeing a good amount of traffic.

After you’ve gotten the hang of it, you can start thinking about making money from your blog. Note, that in order to make money from your blog, you’re going to need a substantial amount of traffic. Aim for at least 2000 pageviews a month in the beginning. Slowly keep raising the bar as your blog grows.

Different Monetization Methods

Once your blog gets around 10,000 views, you can follow the below steps to make money from your Blog.

1. Ads – When you’re starting out, ads a good way to make some extra chunk change. But in order for this to work, you need to have a lot of views because you only get paid if people click on these or buy something by clicking on them. Personally, I don’t use Ads. Because I find  it ruins my web design and makes everything look too cluttered.

2. Affiliates – Being an affiliate for a product means you provide a link to a product (that you are an affiliate for) and if someone clicks on that link and makes a purchase, the company provides you a little commission at no extra cost to the person who clicked on the link.

3. Products – I’ve made a lot of printables and clipart that I sell in my shop. And you can too. You can either start a shop on Etsy or Creative Market or sell your products on your Blog like how I sell my ebook on mine.

4. Services – You may be an artist/photographer/writer/designer/wedding planner and so on. Advertise your services on your very own page. Let people know what you’re good at so they can hire you with a click of a button.

5. Sponsored Posts – Write emails to brands you want to collaborate with or write a blog post featuring their product. It’s a great way to earn money in the beginning of your blogging journey and earn some recognition.

If you like reading and you’re looking for a good book to learn how to monetize your blog and become an expert, then I highly recommend you read How to Blog for Profit without Selling your Soul.

I loved this book because it taught me some Blogging tricks to gain more traffic and monetize my blog efficiently.

Conclusion

I know I’ve covered a lot of points and I know it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

Hey, I feel you.

Therefore, make sure you bookmark this article so you can keep coming back to it and read it at your own pace.

I’m a Computer Science Engineer by default, but I’ve managed to create a blog that’s artsy and creative that not only helps people but also helps me earn my living as a Blogger. All my blogging knowledge comes from a lot of reading and experience.

Why am I telling you this?

Because I want you to know that anyone can blog.

I can.

You can.

I’m pretty sure my dogs have their own blogs too. But the secret to a successful blog little grasshopper, is to never stop trying.

Blogging comic, Comic about blogging, blog comic, blogging jokes, funny blogging jokes, blogging comics #blog #blogging #howtoblog,

Consistency is the key.

Sometimes, you might not achieve all the results you want to immediately.

Sometimes, you will feel like crying because you will feel like you’re getting nowhere.

Even so, never let it bring you down. Remember, nobody became a super blogger in one day. In fact, it takes months (even years) of practice and consistency to reach to the top.

If you’ve just created a blog, type the link below in the comment section. What are you blogging about? I’d love to know! And if this post helped you learn something new, be a doll and share it with the world.

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Angela Vaz
Angela Vaz
Angela is a 25 year old Illustrator and Comic Artist living in Bangalore, India with her husband and 2 cute little labrador retrievers who resemble a cream-bun and a chocolate kiss.

16 Comments

  1. Such great details here! I know I need to work on content upgrades and some passive income products but they keep getting pushed to the back burner in lieu of client projects! I am pretty sure I need to read your blog every morning for some motivation to do a little each day at least!

    • Angela Mary says:

      Hello Melanie,
      I just hopped on over to your blog and OMG, I’m in love! Your recipes are mouth-watering. You’re right. Content upgrades are super important. I try and make one a month at least. It’s difficult when client work takes so much time. But it really helps in list-building. 😀 Thank you Melanie, let me know if I can help you with anything!
      Lots of love,
      Angela

  2. Rhonda Swan says:

    Outstanding and unstoppable post to get someone started! Cheers!

    • Angela Mary says:

      Hi Rhonda!
      Gosh I love your website name! Unstoppable Momma! Yes! Thank you so much! I’m so glad you loved the post. Do let me know if there is anything I can help you with.
      Have a lovely day,
      Angela

  3. Hey Angela, awesome, awesome post! I found it very valuable, so thank you!
    I’ve been blogging for the last 2 years however recently had a break from it for several months. I’m getting back into it because it really makes me sooooo happy! I totally agree about the point on consistency, something i’m working hard to achieve this year and in future! I would love for you to check out my blog MindBeauty: https://beautyisthemind.wordpress.com/.

    P.s I’ll be switching to my own domain and getting rid of the .wordpress.com in the URL (as recommended haha!) really soon. I’ve only just started to think about the possibility of making $ from my blog. Something that will of course take lots of time and work. Thanks again for your awesome tips girl!!

    Angelica x

    • Angela Vaz says:

      Hey Angelica,
      I’m so, so happy that you like it. 🙂 2 years is awesome! And it’s good to take a break from blogging sometimes. It starts giving you perspective and you’re able to see your goals clearly. I just hopped on over to your blog. I love it!
      I feel you can make your About Page longer. I realized that mine is incredibly short too and I have to work on it this week.
      Oh, you should definitely get your own domain! It will really make you look like a professional and help your blog make more money.
      Lots of love,
      Angela

  4. Abhilasha says:

    I tried blogging but couldn’t be consistent because of college 😓 I should give it a shot again with your tips this time.. really helpful post as always 💕

    • Angela Vaz says:

      Hey Abhilasha!
      I totally understand. College is a huge bummer. Lol. But once you’re done or get a nice break, you should resume blogging. I’m seriously enjoying it so much!
      Lots of love,
      Angela

  5. Your blog site and advice are amazing! It’s easy to read, well organized, and definitely a site I will revisit. Thanks for the insights and for sharing your incredible talent. Today was the perfect day for me to read this. I was in need of some inspiration. Kindest Wishes for your continues success! ~ Mary at World of Writer Mom

    • Angela Vaz says:

      Hi Mary,

      Thank you so much. Super stoked that you love the blog! 🙂 I’ve just started it and I’m so excited to be writing again. Blogging truly is a joy.

      And we all need a little inspiration. I just visited your blog and it’s really nice. Gonna bookmark it and visit it when I’m a mom someday. Wishing you all the best with your blog too.

      Lots of love,
      Angela

  6. Ivy says:

    Great ideas. I’m just starting out and this will help me out a lot! Thank you for the insight. I look forward to hearing more from you.

    • Angela Vaz says:

      Hey Ivy,
      I’m so glad you loved them. 🙂 I’ve just started my blog and I will be rolling out a lot of tips soon. Weekly to be precise. Thank you so much for reading. 😀
      I just read your story on your blog and I’m really touched. You’re an inspiration to the world. Don’t ever stop blogging.
      Hugs,
      Angela

  7. Jaron Gorena says:

    You know, I’ll bookmark this or keep this on a list later on when I grow more successful. I maybe be starting now still, but any knowledge I can take helps. I would love to consider this later on. When I start marketing, I’ll consider this as a guide to help get me started. I still adore the guides you create and inspire new seeds and people. I love your artwork and the inspiration you give as always. ❤️❤️❤️

    • Angela Vaz says:

      Hi Jaron,
      Thank you so much. I’m super glad you found this post helpful. And I’m still in my learning phase too. This blog is brand new and I have so much hope for it this year. 🙂 I love being able to help people and I’m so lucky to have a platform where I can contribute so much!
      Are you talking about marketing for your art? 🙂
      Lots of love,
      Angela

  8. Hello Angela,

    Great pictures and amazing overview. I would like to use your suggestion in step “3. Comment on other Blogs”. 🙂
    I want to provide a value for your readers by sharing my recorder video (less than 4 min) for step “3. Installing WordPress”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNWYQkJk7t4.

    Thank you,
    Levi at Passive Income Boost

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