In a world that’s driven by digital data and the internet, blogs have become a normal part of our lives.
These articles, news pieces, or guides cover a specific topic or query that the target audience has, are informative, and are usually supported by images, infographics, videos, third-party links, or interactive charts.
The big question – can anyone start a blog? If the answer is yes, you may wonder How to start a blog and make money ? OR how to blog successfully and make money?
Table of Contents
- Why Would You Want to Start a Blog ?
- How Does a Blog Generate Revenue?
- Hand-picking the Best Niche
- The Technical Set-Up:
- Keyword Research:
- What is the first step to writing a successful blog?
- After how long can blogs generate revenue?
- Can blogs be a source of income?
Why Would You Want to Start a Blog ?
Before we look into how to write a successful blog, let’s look at the benefits of starting one.
Essentially, a blog empowers you to publish your unique experiences, thoughts, insights, or stories, on any niche that you prefer.
It helps boost your business or brand’s image, credibility, and revenue.
A blog helps establish a rapport with your target audience and create an open dialogue with them, which enhances your or your brand’s transparency.
Most importantly, it helps drive traffic to your website, and ultimately, this generates more awareness and more revenue.
A blog does come with a plethora of benefits and to reap them your content has to convert.
This means that it has to reach the right audiences, have the right links, and of course, hit the right checkboxes in terms of quality.
How Does a Blog Generate Revenue?
The first part of answering How to start a blog and make money is to understand how blogs typically generate revenue.
You need to remember that it is not a get-rich-quick scheme, it takes time, patience, and a thorough understanding of what you’re doing.
Monetizing Through Advertisements
Broadly speaking, there are three types of ads that are usually used for blogs.
We’ll discuss some tools to help you place these ads in a later section.
- Cost Per Click (CPC) or Pay Per Click (PPC) Ads: These are usually placed in the form of banners somewhere on your blog page. You get paid every time a reader clicks on the ads.
- Cost Per 1000 Impressions or CPM Ads: As the name indicates, these ads pay you a certain amount based on the number of people who view them.
- Private Ads: While the previous two advertisement types require you to work with advertising networks, private ads give you the liberty to contact advertisers yourself. These ads include links, guest posts, banners, or buttons.
Including Affiliate Links in the Content
When an advertiser gives you a unique link with an affiliate code, it is called affiliate marketing. Every time the advertiser makes a sale through a buyer who is redirected from your blog, you get a fixed commission.
Selling Digital Products
If you prefer not to advertise other businesses or brands on your site, you could consider selling novel digital products like e-books, online courses or workshops, videos, images, plugins, or themes.
For example, if you’re opting for this avenue of income generation, ensure that your digital products are useful as well as relevant for your audience.
There are several things that you can offer exclusively through memberships and earn money through them.
To take an example, if you have a blog dedicated to startup businesses, you could sell memberships to access forums dedicated to personalized advice.
Next on this 101 guide on how to write a good blog, is to select the right niche or your field of expertise.
There is a myriad of topics you can talk about, and zeroing in on one can be quite tough.
Here are two tips to hand-pick the best one.
Choose Something You’re Passionate About
It might sound like a cliche, but passion is the most important thing about selecting a niche.
If you don’t blog about something that you love and are passionate about, it reflects in your writing and your blog will be subpar, at best.
Understand Your Readership
If you’re wondering how to blog successfully and make money, it is to have enough traffic.
If you have shortlisted a few niches, you could select one by understanding what the audience wants and what would resonate with them.
For this step, you could consider creating buyer personas or semi-fictional representations of who your ideal audience members will be, based on data and thorough research.
This will help you better align your content, gain leads, and also attract more loyal readers.
The Technical Set-Up:
Writing a successful blog that you can earn, doesn’t end with selecting a niche and writing high-quality content.
There are some technicalities behind it, which are explored below.
Keyword research is an important aspect of Search Engine Optimization SEO, a process that helps your blog rank better on search engines.
It includes researching words or phrases your target audience commonly uses, to search for information. A page that ranks better on search engines, improves visibility and increases traffic.
There are free and paid tools available that will help you analyze various keyword research parameters.
These include search volume, competitiveness or difficulty in ranking, and bidding costs for ad campaigns.
Some popular tools used by bloggers are Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Ubersuggest.
These quality tools will also provide you with a list of keywords suggestions that you can use to start a blog and make money.
The “Keyword Explorer” tool on this platform gives you in-depth information on each suggested keyword. Apart from search volume, it offers a breakdown of how many searchers will click on a result and first-page competition.
The number of backlinks you’ll require to rank on Google’s first page is also an included stat.
Instead of typing in a primary or “seed” keyword, this platform will give you keywords that your competitors rank for.
The data under its “Organic Keywords” section will show you the top keywords, along with the volume, and value of the traffic.
Ubersuggest is a free SEO tool that helps you generate new keyword ideas.
You can type in a seed keyword, and the platform will give you its long-tail versions. It will also give key data including PPC and SEO competition, average CPC, and monthly search volumes.
The Ultimate Content Plan
Once you’ve selected your niche, named your blog, and designed a theme for it, it’s time to come up with a set of interesting blog topics.
The only way to be a successful blogger is to ensure that your audience keeps growing at a steady pace.
The best way to do so is to offer content that they find irresistible and attention-worthy. Before making a list of possible topics, try to answer these questions:
- Which topic will create intrigue among your target audience?
- Are there any challenges or pain points that your readership can relate to?
- What topics in the niche would the readers love?
- Which topics will they absolutely detest?
- Are there any character traits that the readership has in common?
Retrospecting on these questions will help you come up with engaging topics.
These will help strike a conversation with your readers. Also, come up with catchy topics that tell them what exactly to expect in the blog.
While clickbait is a trend, it often leaves the readers disappointed, so create catchy, crisp headlines instead.
Keyword research is only a part of SEO; there are many other aspects to it. For your blog to rank well on a popular search engine among thousands of blogs on the same topic, you need to optimize it for the following parameters:
- User experience
- Bounce Rate, which is the percentage of users who visit your blog but don’t take any action like clicking a link or filling a form.
- Dwell time or the amount of time a reader spends on a particular page before returning to the search results.
- Search intent or the main goal that the target audience has while typing a keyword or query into the search engine.
- Page loading speed.
For on-site or on-page SEO, you’ll have to optimize your content, title tags, URLs, and internal links. SEO can be quite complex but go through the Webmaster guidelines from Google or Bing, to get a basic idea of the dos and don’ts.
Start Guest Blogging to Generate Traffic
Another tip on how to write a good blog is to guest post.
Guest blogging is when you write niche content for another website. The process offers mutual benefits to both you, and the host website.
It helps draw traffic to your site, boosts your domain authority since you’ll be using external links to high-authority sites, and improves your blog’s credibility and awareness.
All these aspects help generate more traffic while building a good rapport with industry peers.
Connect With an Ad Network
As discussed earlier, setting up ads on your blog is a great way to monetize it.
However, you need to be smart about it and not bombard your page with blinking ads and pop-ups as they can be super annoying.
Instead, focus on targeted ads that appeal to your readers and don’t distract them from the main content on your blog. Several intuitive ad networks can help you set up ads on your page, including Google AdSense, BlogAds, and BuySellAds. To write a successful blog you need to stay away from networks that allow scam ads.
Stick With it and Stay Consistent!
A successful blog runs like clockwork! Ensure that you post regularly, at least a few times a week. If SEO is your topmost priority, it’s ideal to post daily.
Understandably, the first few weeks may be overwhelming, what with the number of tools at your disposal.
Stick to your blog regardless of the rollercoaster ride. It’s okay to make mistakes, we all learn on the go. If you can’t post regularly or are on a break, leverage scheduling tools to post the blogs automatically. Perseverance, hard work, and consistent quality will certainly deliver.
There are no well-kept secrets or a magic wand that you can wave to guarantee your success in the realm of blogging.
It is a combination of perseverance, a dash of luck, and loads of hard work with passion. Paired with the right set of tools for SEO or connecting with ad networks, you’ll be all set to write a successful blog and earn a steady side income from it!
What is the first step to writing a successful blog?
The first step on how to write a good blog is to do some market research and zero in on a niche. You don’t want to select a niche that you’re not passionate about or one that’s already too saturated.
After how long can blogs generate revenue?
This depends on several factors including the tools you’re using, the frequency of your posts, and SEO rankings. A successful blog can generate revenue in as little as six months!
Can blogs be a source of income?
Absolutely! There are several ways to generate a steady income via blogging, including ads, guest posting, affiliate links, offering memberships, and more! It helps boost your business or brand’s image, credibility, and revenue.