Have you been thinking about starting a blog?
If you love to write, and if you want to use your love for writing to make a difference in the world while earning money, then you’re probably wondering; how to start a blog on WordPress?
And we’re not just talking about the technicals here, but what it actually takes to make a blog work. If you’re new to this, then you may be a bit overwhelmed at the idea of getting started… and understandably so.
Don’t worry! It’s not as difficult as you think!
Below you are going to get walked through the 7-steps get your blog live and online... You'll learn how to publish so Google finds you and you can start to get traffic...
Keep in mind that the number one reason why most people fail at blogging, is because they don’t stick with it! But the good news is that you can do it differently.
I’m going to show you not only how to get started, but also how to find out what people are looking for, the most important aspects of setting up your blog and the number one thing to achieve blogging success!
Themes, Funnels, Design, Keyword Research, Analytics... None Of it Matters Without…
A lot of people get really caught up in the technical aspects of blogging.
And to be honest, that’s not surprising. When you look at how successful some people are at it, you can get really caught up in that spirit.
You may feel like you need to be making money right away or gaining hundreds of subscribers to be ‘doing it right.’
Well, rest assured that this is not the case.
You see, the platform… the design… the keyword research… the analytics… these things do matter in the long term. But you will quickly discover that they do not matter at all unless you’ve covered the most basic, fundamental part of the equation.
Blogging is about helping and serving people. Offering value to their lives. Making your audience’s lives better.
As a blogger, your job is to solve problems and answer questions.
But all of this goes out the window if you don’t produce consistent content. You’ll improve in the search engine optimization game over time, just like every other successful blogger.
Ok, so let’s dive deeper into how to start your blog.
How to Start a Blog and Make Money
If you want to be successful and make money blogging, you have to start with a solid foundation.
Today you will have a successful blogging foundation,
- Google will know your blog exists
- Google will index all blog posts that you write going forward
- Traffic will soon begin to come when you commit to publishing content consistently
To begin making money blogging, you simply have to start, here's how.
The Best (and affordable!) Foundation to Start Your Blog - Fast
In order to get your blog up and running, there are 2 things you need to get started.
A domain name & hosting.
Once you have these two things, you’re launched!
Your domain name, you probably understand already... It's yourname.com or yourbrandedsite.com
Hosting is the virtual real estate where your website lives... This is not optional and these are the people responsible for keeping your site online day and night.
There is one company I use and recommend for all my niche sites for the hosting AND the domain name.
They take care of both and they will even install the WordPress content management system (Much more about this later) for you at no additional charge.
So the first thing you need to do is get your hosting and domain setup by clicking here.
This link takes you to their 'WordPress Hosting' option which is the one you want, so they take the headache out of installing WordPress for you.
The page looks like this:
You will simply click on the orange "Get Started" button to being the process...
NOTE: The 'promo code' you see on the image WILL CHANGE... They change this code every couple weeks... But you will still get a discount when you use my link here.
It will auto-update your browser with the most current promotion so you get the best deal.
This brings you to the next step where you will enter your domain and you will choose whether this is a NEW domain you want them to register for you... Or if you already own the domain and you just want hosting...
You will also see the confirmation that the most current discount code has been applied to your order here...
1. Domain Name
Obviously your domain name is the name of your website and way too many people overthink this step.
If you feel 'stuck' on this question of what domain to go with, here's my video that goes DEEP into 'what makes a good domain name' that you can watch to get un-stuck, fast.
A couple key ideas here for you.
First, if you are building a personal brand, go with your personal name. This gives you the most flexibility in the future to adapt and evolve into different niches as you grow and evolve.
This is why I chose my name for this domain...
And if yourname.com is still available, you want to lock it up before someone else does!
If your EXACT MATCH name is not available you can come up with variations like milesishere.com or coachmiles.com or mbmarketing.com etc.
If your name isn’t available or doesn’t really work, choose a domain that still embodies the spirit of the niche or a brand name you've used in the past.
That’s fine too.
Here are some things to keep in mind when buying a domain name:
- Make it something that’s easy for people to pronounce
- Don’t make it too long [thisisthebestdomainnameever.com]
- Make sure there aren’t any weird phrases or words hidden in your domain name ex. speed of art - speedofart.com (Speedo Fart?) or experts exchange - expertsexchange.com
- Stick with a .com - this is the most familiar type of domain
Ultimately you must make a decision here and move forward.
Remember that all brand names start as unknown and obscure ideas... "Uber"? "Google"? "Pepsi"?
They meant nothing to most people until the companies built USEFUL and ENJOYABLE products and engaged in massive amounts of marketing.
Whatever name you choose, YOU will give it life, energy and meaning through your content and marketing in the coming weeks, months and years!
You probably don't know this about me, but I used to work for a web hosting company back in 2005...
This company (while I was working there) got bought out by a HUGE mega-corporation and the services and support got destroyed... The company went from GOOD to TERRIBLE in a month's time.
I was appalled and I learned this is "normal" in the web hosting world.
This is what I call the web hosting conspiracy.
And this is EXACTLY why I use and recommend A2 hosting, because they are independently owned and they have no plans or goals to sell out.
As of this writing, I have been using A2 for over 3 years and their services and support are fantastic.
They also have some of the best prices in the industry and install WordPress for you...
Ok, just a little confidence booster for you while you are getting started with them... Let's get back to your other tab where you are purchasing your hosting...
By default they have 3 years selected for you and the price will be just over $100. This is an extremely good value, but if you want to save a little money today, that is possible.
If you choose their 12 month option, you can get the cost down to under $40 today.
At this point you will notice they do indeed have a money back guarantee... So you really have no risks in getting started today!
Next, you will want to customize your hosting a little, too... So keep scrolling down.
There are 2 options you should consider, the server location and the offsite backups shown with red arrows, here:
All of their servers are SUPER FAST... But the closer your server is to your website visitors, the faster it will be for them.
If you are in Europe and will be targeting a European audience... Chose hosting in Amsterdam.
If you are in Asia, choose the Singapore server farm.
Then for North America, think of it as Midwest & East Coast (Michigan Servers) or Rocky Mountains to the West Coast (Arizona Servers).
The second choice is for offsite backups...
Now, this is purchasing 'peace of mind' that if anything every happens to your site or server, there is always a backup in a second location that can SAVE YOUR A$$!
You only need the basic backup package and it costs less than $2/month.
I highly recommend it, so you can move forward FAST and if you have any issues, their support team can always help you roll back to the previous day's (or week's) backup, to get you working again.
Optional, but recommended.
Get Your Login Details During Checkout!
Once you've chosen your backups and server location, keep scrolling down to the "Additional Options" section...
You will see a bright yellow box with your login details for your website they will build after you complete checkout.
You need to copy this down and save it so you can easily access your WordPress dashboard after they build and configure it for you (takes about 10 minutes)...
Copy and paste your WordPress login information, this will not be emailed or received any other way.
If you miss this you can recover your password with the help of their support, but it's a pain compared to just copying and pasting it into a notepad 😉
At this point, you are ready to checkout...
Click on the orange "Continue" button on the right and complete your checkout process.
Leave your browser window open, as it takes a few minutes to install and set everything up for you… and BOOM
Your brand new blog is LIVE on the web!
But don't worry... No one will find it until you start publishing some great content that gets picked up by Google.
Once your site is up, let's move on to getting it configured so it is Google friendly, so it can attract heaps of visitors...
Then, we will move on to getting a great looking theme setup for you so your site looks great!
3. WordPress Default BlogPost Settings Modification
To get your site configured in the way Google prefers, you need to make a couple of modifications to the default WordPress settings.
Then, you need blog posts, written by you. This starts the process of getting website traffic.
This is really all blogging is, writing about a topic that helps a person along a journey one post at a time.
Here’s how to set up WordPress so these blog posts can begin to bring you website traffic.
First, go to ‘Settings’ in WordPress and click ‘permalinks.’
Change the default URL to ‘Post Name.’ You want a clean URL that means something to Google and your readers, not a date or a random blog post number.
This is a seo hack and is one of the crucial steps of learning SEO.
4. Then go to posts and click add new.
And you would begin to write something like this.
You write and hit publish. Then, you write another blog post again. Tomorrow, or even right after your first one!
In other words… keep writing blogs, and become a content creator instead of a consumer.
3 Tools for Scaled Success - WordPress Page Builder, Theme, Google Traffic and More
When you start a blog you want to track your traffic so you can convert it into leads and customers.
Conversion optimization is what this game is called.
Website conversion optimization is a super deep rabbit hole you do not need to go down right now. Your homepage is all you should focus on today. Start blogging so you can get traffic that later on you can start converting into money.
This is the homepage of our huge WordPress blog.
This is my homepage.
Notice a consistent thread?
They are lead generating machines. How do you build a homepage that gets you leads?
The Best WordPress Blog Page Builder
All of my websites, funnels, landing pages, optin forms, and popups are built on the same WordPress page builder.
You want to have the ability to build a homepage and design future pages simply. This conversion-focused website builder is the first tool to invest in, for many reasons.
You get many premium WordPress theme options, including trainings and courses on how to build a homepage that converts, your popup, and more.
And you will see in the next step that a Thrive Membership will save you from having to install other plugins as well.
For now, install Thrive Themes and simply course your way through “how to build a homepage that converts course” and get launched.
If you aren’t ready to invest in the Thrive Themes Membership, you can still access thier free conversion optimization courses. These will provide you with a ton of valuable information to help you get started.
All you have to do is go to Thrive University, enter your email and you’ll have access to some of the best website trainings and courses on the internet.
Install Google Analytics and Get Data
How do you start tracking your traffic? Simple, Google Analytics!
This will allow you to access anonymous data about how your site is being used, how many visitors are coming to your site, what they are doing on it, and a lot more.
When you click on the link above, it will take you to the Google analytics homepage. If you don’t already have an account, you will need to create one.
Once you have Google Analytics all set up, you will need to install a piece of code on your website for Google to begin giving you data. To get to this code, you click on ‘admin.’
Click on ‘Tracking Info’
Then ‘Tracking Code’
And copy the script code here
Go to your WordPress site and hover on the Thrive Dashboard and click ‘Theme Options’
Click ‘Analytics / Scripts’
And paste in the script coding you copied from Analytics
If you decide not to go with Thrive Themes at this time, you can do this with another plugin called Monster Insights. Don’t go with their paid levels, it is not a good use of your money. Just use the free version and get analytics installed on your site.
Connect Your Website to Google
Google Analytics is for tracking traffic, but we also need to get you some traffic to track.
For your blog posts to populate to the searchers on Google, Google needs to know that your blog posts are on the web.
Google Search Console is how you can guarantee your posts to be “indexed by Google” so they can populate your posts to Googlers.
With analytics installed, it is a simple process to activate Google Search console.
Go to Google Webmasters Tools and create a free account.
When you initially login it will look something like this. You will want to click ‘add property.’
Paste in the URL of your new blog and click ‘continue'.
Doing this after connecting Analytics makes the process super simple. Google verifies that your email account is valid in Analytics, and returns back with an ownership auto verified acknowledgement.
You then want to go back to WordPress and get a free plugin that will help your search engine optimization strategy.
Go to your WordPress Dashboard and click ‘plugins,’ then ‘add new.’
Type ‘Yoast’ in the search bar, click ‘Install,’ and then click ‘activate’ (Mine says update instead of install).
Now hover over the Yoast settings and click ‘General.’
Click on ‘Features.’
And scroll down to XML sitemaps and click the question mark icon.
Then click see the XML sitemap.
Copy the URL of your sitemap.
Go back to Google Search Console and click Sitemaps.
Paste in your sitemap URL, then delete what you already see is populated by search console so it looks something like this.
Click submit and you are ready to begin your successful blog!
The Best Start To A Successful Blog Content Strategy
Despite the fact that starting a WordPress blog is actually pretty easy and painless, a lot of people feel overwhelmed.
They feel scared, unsure, and just generally lost.
But I will be honest with you. I have been doing this for years. I have grown several websites to 6 figures and more, and if there is one thing that I know about, it is how to make a blog work.
And I can tell you, right now, that the number one best way to start a successful blog is just to start… and then work your way up from there.
Seriously… getting your blog set up, and publishing your first blog post (even if it is short) is a HUGE milestone! If you can get this accomplished, you will have made TREMENDOUS HEADWAY and will be off to an AWESOME start!
Write the best possible piece of content you can put out, and just get started.
You will get better on your way to 90, 300, 1000 posts!
How to Choose a Keyword for Your Second Blog Post
The trick to getting traffic to your blog is writing about a topic that people are searching for on Google.
If your content is helping more people, and is solving problems better than other blogs on that topic, then more people will be checking it out. And at the end of the day, that means that it will rank better, get shared on social, come up in people’s conversations, and more.
But content alone is not the answer. You need to get found as well, so you must balance content with keyword research and SEO to get people to discover your site in the first place.
Here’s how to find the easy keywords that new blogs can rank for, you don’t want to chase difficult keywords in the beginning, you have to find the low hanging fruit!
Write a blog article about each of these topics.
Here’s the link to this powerful keyword tool that gives you 5 free searches per day, perfect for beginners!
Then, after about a month, you will see in Google Search Console and Google Analytics exactly how many people you are introducing to your blog, how many people are visiting your blog, how long they are staying on your page, and more!
There are literally dozens of reasons to start here, with your passion and a desire to help people, instead of starting with the idea of ‘making money’ right from the beginning.
The Trick To Make the Most Money Blogging
The trick to making the most money blogging is pretty simple.
You have to take your audience through the steps they need to accomplish their goal.
Granted, this is blending a few different ideas… but bear with me.
The trick is to build authority. Why? Because if you can gain a position in the blogosphere as an authority in your niche, you will attract an audience.
How do you build authority? By offering value.
With a blog you not only have the ability to be of service, but you can also provide services at scale!
Help your audience to such a degree that they begin looking at you not just as a blogger, but as a leader in your niche market.
This is why you need to stop thinking about your blog from a money-first standpoint. Instead, you need to be thinking about it in reverse.
How can I truly be of service to my audience? How can I help them solve their problems? How can I help them succeed?
In your life, you have had one or more unique struggles that you have had to overcome.
In overcoming that struggle, you had to learn things. You had to develop skills, abilities, and a knowledge base that allowed you to overcome your own problems and conquer your objectives.
This took work and practice… but you did it. There are many highly profitable blogging topics. But when you make an impact on someone’s life, this will lead you to success.
So here is the trick to making serious, lifestyle-changing money blogging. We’re not just talking dollars here. We are talking about serious 6-figure+ money.
You have to…
- Identify a struggle, challenge, or problem that you have overcome
- Clarify an audience who is dealing with the same struggle
- And grow a blog that will help your audience to overcome the same struggle or problem that you overcame using the skills, knowledge, and abilities that you learned while you were doing it
It could be anything. Maybe you got really good at playing video games? Maybe you learned how to cook vegan food. Maybe you had to learn how to teach in a classroom, or maybe you had to learn how to cope with crippling depression or anxiety?
It doesn’t really matter what the struggle was or how ‘commercially viable’ it is.
If my wife and I had researched profitable niches before starting our site, our current website… which has received over 30 million visitors… would never have launched.
The blue line at the bottom that looks like a zero line, that is the amount of searches our niche receives compared to ‘make money online’ and ‘meditations queries.’ A market research trends check with Google trends shows us this.
That little blue line, people searching for our specific little niche, has earned us millions of dollars online.
Don’t overthink this… just start writing optimized blog posts from your passion, skills and experiences.
The 90-Day Challenge
This 90-day content challenge is not for the faint of heart, but if you are wanting to make the shift from being a consumer to a content creator, this is a method that forces you to dial in the content creation game. The 90 day challenge is basically a plan where you write a blog post and publish it once a day, every day, for 90 days straight!
The goal is to become a creator and instill the disclipines and habits to create and publish content for SEO fast.
My wife has done this a few times during the growth of our blog. I have also done this two times in the last 2 years to launch the Miles Beckler brand, but it is not easy.I'll give you an example of a blogger that is launching his blog on the side, but not with the 90-day challenge method.
The 90-Week Challenge
In my membership program, there is a member named Tiger, and he is a leading golf teacher in Ireland. His services are in high demand, and he is wanting to make a shift in his career to online coaching and courses, as opposed to side-by-side golf coaching sessions.
In addition to his 60 hour work week, he began a 90 week challenge, in which he challenged himself to write a blog every week for 90 weeks straight!
At first, it was very difficult. But he is finding that, as time passes and he evolves, it is becoming easier and easier… and he has actually transitioned to writing two blogs most weeks, instead of one!
Somewhere In Between - Allocate Your Time Wisely for Success
Race to 100 with a consistent heartbeat.
Consistency is the key to winning in this game. Whether you choose to blog every day, once a week, or something entirely different, the key is to stay consistent.
Choose a schedule that works for you, and stick with it. That is the most important thing.
If you want to do the 90 day challenge, I always tell people that the first one is actually the most important.
After you write your first blog post, concentrate on making every single one of the next 89 better than the last.
Make blog post 2 better than blog post 1. Blow blog post 2 away with blog post 3.
Take what you learned from your first 20 posts, and blow the roof off with blog post 21.
This first 90 days is all about inventing yourself, learning, adapting, re-inventing, learning more, failing, getting back up, coming back even stronger, becoming a creator instead of a consumer.
When you finally hit that 90 day mark, you will not even recognize yourself or your blog.
But listen carefully, my friends. The magic… and the power… comes only from doing. You have to do it, and you have to show up…
Outsource Stuff that is not Content for Cheap!
As you grow your blog, you should focus on doing the things that only you can do, and eventually make the shift to outsourcing the other tasks to inexpensive help… which will help to free you up to do a lot more of the crucial things that only you can do.
Custom images, landing page construction, creating infographics for Pinterest, etc. These things can all be outsourced.
The power of your blog is your voice, coming through and connecting with your readers… not you spending hours trying to figure out graphic design or how to use Photoshop.
There are crazy cheap places online where you can outsource these kinds of simple tasks to others, so that you can keep doing what you do best… connecting with your readers and writing. Fiverr.com is one example.
Let’s talk about your logo for a moment.
Now, this isn’t necessarily something that you need to stress over. In fact, it wasn’t even in our list of the 3 things you need to set up a blog. It isn’t even something you need to come up with today.
But… it will eventually be something that you will add to your site later. And when you do add it, it will represent your brand.
Don’t overthink this part. You can easily get a logo created for you on Fiverr.com for $20 to $100.
As you create content and get to know yourself and your blog better, you will likely feel the details of your logo taking shape. And that is awesome!
Once you get it figured out, get one designed and start using it!
Your first desire should be to serve your audience and help them. This is the key. This is the greatest blogging commission.
This single element is what separates truly successful blogs from failing ones.
If you start this process more concerned with making money than helping people, you have already made a grave mistake.
But very close to this first element is the pure power of consistency.
Slow and steady wins the race. Showing up every day is what leads to success. You need to put the time in, consistently. If you don’t do this, you will fail.
In fact, this is where most bloggers go wrong. They just stop showing up. They just get lazy and stop putting in the effort.
Nurture within yourself a true desire to serve your audience, and show up every day with 100% consistency. If you can do these two things, you have a HUGE chance of gaining success for yourself in the blogging world.