How to start a blog in 2020: guide for beginners?

how to start a blog

Do you want to start a blog and make money from blogging?

If so, it would be a great decision for you but have you asked yourself, why you want to start a blog? You might get the below answers.

  • You want to earn money from the blog.
  • You are passionate about blogging and want to make blogging a full-time job.
  • You are a business and want to start a business site.

There could be other reasons as well but the above three are the most common. Blogging would not be difficult if you are passionate about it.

In this article, I’ll walk you through the entire process of starting a blog from scratch. It would be quite a long article but I will make sure you will not get bored while reading it. Keep a cup of coffee with you.

Choose profitable Blog Topic

The first step to start a blog is to choose the right blog topic, in blogging terms we call it a blog niche.

choose a blog niche

How to choose blog niche?

There is no rocket science for choosing the blog niche but let me ask you a few questions and when you answer it you will get your blog niche.

  • Which pages, groups you liked or followed most on social media?
  • When you open YouTube, then what types of videos you watch?
  • On what topics do you want to have a discussion?

If you answer all the above questions, you will get one common category. You can also call it your interest area.

Basically, I wanted to know about your passion and what you like most. Always choose a blog niche in which you are interested or passionate about.

Why so?

I think you know the answer, but let me share my opinion on it.

If you do the things which you love then you would not feel like you are working. You will do it with passion and dedication. Also, the most important thing is you will never get bored of it.

On the other hand, if you want to make money from your blog then the niche should be profitable.

What is profitable niche?

The niche where you will get many products and services for promoting and it has more commission rates. So, the chances of earning money from a profitable niche are more.

Keep it in mind that, every niche is not profitable, you will have to choose it wisely to get more benefits.

Got confused?

Now, if you will have to choose a niche in which you are interested and it should be profitable. This would not happen every time.

In this case, you will have two choices, start a blog in which you are interested or you can start a blog by choosing a profitable niche. Both sides have pros and cons.

When you choose a niche in which you have an interest then you will never get bored for writing what you like and passionate about. If it is not profitable then you will have to find out the different ways to monetize it.

When you choose the profitable niche, then you have already won the jackpot, you just need to pour your skills and pull the money out of it.

Finally we came to the solution.

Choose a niche in which you are interested and it should be profitable(if you want to earn money from the blog). I would recommend you don’t start a multi-niche blog, it would be difficult for a beginner to rank a multi-niche blog.

Here are the few blog niche ideas for your reference.

  • Health
  • Finance
  • Travel
  • Food
  • Sports
  • Blogging
  • Gadgets Review
  • Mobiles
  • Laptops

Purchase Domain Name

I assume you are ready with your blog niche. It is better to start a blog on your own domain. It’s time to purchase a good domain name for your blog.

purchase a domain name

Here are the few things which you should remember before buying a domain name.

  • Keep your domain name simple, short.
  • You can use domain name generator tools to get better domain ideas.
  • Choose dot com domain name.
  • Don’t include trademarked words.

I have published a detailed article about things to be remembered while purchasing a domain name you can go through it.

Basically, you have to choose a unique, simple, and classy domain name. If you don’t get a domain name idea then you can use the domain name generator tools to get a better idea.

Where should you buy a domain name?

There are many domain name registrar available like GoDaddy, Google Domain, NameCheap, BigRock, etc. All these registrars are trusted and millions of users using their products.

You will get a domain name starting from 1$ per year. The pricing for all the registrars is almost the same.

Keep it in mind that, the domain name will be your identity, choose it wisely. You will use it everywhere on the internet.

Again, there is no rocket science for purchasing a domain name, open the registrar site, and purchase it.

Choose blogging platform

You have selected blog topics, domain names and now you want a blogging platform to start your blog.

choose a blogging platform

There are few blogging platforms that are popular like WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, etc.

The blogger is an entirely free blogging platform, if you want to know what is blogging then you can start a blog on blogger and learn the basic concepts.

The WordPress has two versions, WordPress.com and WordPress.org.

WordPress.com is a free blogging platform and it has a paid version also. You can upgrade it to get more features like a pro.

WordPress.org is a self-hosted blogging platform where you will have to buy web hosting and install WordPress on it.

I would recommend you to start your blog with self-hosted WordPress.

I have published one article on Blogger and WordPress blogging platforms. If you are confused then you can read it to get a better understanding of the differences.

All the newbie bloggers get confused while choosing a blogging platform. Let me solve this mystery here, let me ask you one simple question.

Are you blogging for money or pursuing your passion about blogging?

If you are blogging for money and want to make blogging a full-time job then you can go for self-hosted WordPress.

If you choose a self-hosted WordPress, you will have to purchase the right web hosting. You have to invest a little amount to start a blog.

Choose Web Hosting

So far, you did great progress. You have selected a blog topic, purchased a domain name, and also selected the blogging platform.

choose a right web hosting

Now, its time to purchase the best web hosting for your self-hosted WordPress blog.

There is a number of web hosting providers available on the internet. You have to choose the best one which gives you better performance.

How one can choose a right web hosting?

 Before that, let me tell you the types of web hosting.

  • Managed Web Hosting
  • Unmanaged Web Hosting

Let’s know the meaning of it.

Managed Web Hosting

In this type of web hosting, the hosting provider will manage your server and also provide you the priority support, in case you required it. Also, you will get a CPanel to manage all your hosting stuff.

Unmanaged Web Hosting

In this type of hosting, you will get a server only with root access and all things you have to manage it yourself. This is something like, Linux or Unix administrator work. If you are not aware of the Linux then it would be difficult for you.

Which is suitable for you?

I would recommend you go for the Managed Web Hosting because we are a blogger and we have to focus on the blog only not the server like Linux Administrator.

The price for managed web hosting is slightly more than the unmanaged but you will get many features like free email addresses, unlimited space, database, and most important CPanel access.

Which is best web hosting providers?

The SiteGround, Bluehost, Hostgator are the top managed web hosting providers. You can choose anyone but I would recommend you to go for Hostgator.

The SiteGround is excellent but for beginner, the pricing of it is high, if you can afford, then go for SiteGround.

If you know, how to manage the server then you can go for the Unmanaged web hosting like Vultr, Digital Ocean, Linode. It will provide you the server instance and you have to manually install the WordPress on it.

I have used Bluehost, DreamHost, Digital Ocean, Vultr for my blogs.

All clear so far.

Install WordPress

When you purchased a web hosting, it’s time to install the wordpress on it.

install wordpress

All the managed web hosting provides a one-click WordPress installation option, so you don’t have to worry about it.

Also, every web hosting has a different dashboard, the process is the same, install WordPress and login to WordPress and design your blog.

If you stuck anywhere then you can contact the support team and they will resolve your issue quickly.

I have written article on how to install wordpress on Bluehost and Hostgator.

The above two articles will help you to install WordPress on any web hosting. Once you installed WordPress there are few settings that you have to take care of, you can read the below article for the same.

Install WordPress Plugins

Once you complete the WordPress installation process, install the necessary plugins. There are a few WordPress plugins that are important to have.

Here are the plugin list that I am using for my blogs.

  • Akismet Anti-Spam– This plugin will block all spam comments.
  • Broken Link Checker– This plugin will find out the broken links in your blog.
  • OneSignal Push Notifications– If you want to send a push notification, this plugin will help you.
  • Redirection– This plugin will help you to redirect the URL to another.
  • Smush– Image compression plugin.
  • ThirstyAffiliates– This plugin will cloak your affiliate links and make it short and simple.
  • WPS Hide Login– This plugin hides the WordPress default login URL.
  • Yoast SEO– This is a must-have a plugin that manages all SEO tasks.
  • Code Snippets– This will help you to add the code, no need to edit to your theme’s functions.php file again.

Choose the right theme

Nothing is free in this world.

If you want to do blogging seriously, then you should purchase a premium WordPress theme. It will cost you around 50$ or sometimes less but it’s worth it.

choose a right blog theme

Theme selection totally depends on the blog niche. Here is the list of themes which I like.

  • GeneratePress– This is one of the fastest WordPress themes. If you want to load your blog quickly then I would recommend you to use this theme.
  • AstraThis is another alternative to GeneratePress. Astra has great performance and has many features.

I use GeneratePress for all my blogs because this is one of the fastest themes available in the WordPress store. It has many features that allow you to customize your theme without any page builder and coding.

If you want to create custom pages for the blog then you can purchase any page builder. GeneratePress will work like a champ with a page builder.

Elementor and Thrive Architect are the best page builder which works great with GeneratePress.

I am using GeneratePress with Thrive Architect.

I think you got my point. You will definitely choose the best WordPress theme for your blog.

Write Your first blog post

Now, you have set up your blog, its time to publish articles on it.

write your first blog post

Before writing any posts, I would suggest you create about, contact, privacy policy page for your blog, your blog will look like professional.

Now, you know your blog niche, you just have to find out the right topics for your article.

Don’t write the content which is easily available on the internet, you can find out what others are missing and try to write articles on it. You can use Grammarly to write error-free articles.

In this way, the chances for ranking your article are more. Also, you can write an article about your practical experience.

If you want to drive traffic from Google then you have to do proper keyword research and optimize your blog posts.

Keyword Research very vast topic, I will not discuss here but I will try to write a detailed blog post on Keyword Research.

Here are the few articles which will help you to write blog posts.

Start Monetizing

You did it, you have created your first blog.

make money from blog

Now, its time to earn money from your blog. There are different ways to earn money online.

  • Google AdSense- You can apply for Google AdSense and place Google Ads on your blog. You will get paid for Pay Per Click(PPC).
  • Affiliate Marketing- This is the best way to earn money by promoting the products of others on our blog.

If you want to know more about Google AdSense and Affiliate Marketing, then read the below articles.

There are many ways to earn money, I have written a detailed article about making money blogging, you can read it.

You can earn more money if your blog has more traffic. Your blogging income is directly proportional to the blog traffic.

If you don’t believe that we can earn money from our blog, you can check out my income report with proof.

What Next?

Let me congratulate you on starting a brand new blog.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

Blogging is a never-ending process. You can write new articles, update the old ones, share it on social networking sites, etc. There are many things that you have to do to make your blog successful.

There are lots of stuff that needs to be done after creating a blog. You should be up to date in blogging.

Do some daily activities on your blog and try to be different from other bloggers, you will definitely get succeeded. Everything depends on the CONTENT.

If you need any help with your blog then you can connect with me at amit@scrollbucks.com

You’ll love to read

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Amit Kharbade

Editor & Writer at ScrollBucks
Engineer, Blogger, Writer, and the man behind ScrollBucks. Amit has been contributing to ScrollBucks since 2014. He is writing about Blogging and his practical blogging experiences. You can connect with him at amit@scrollbucks.com

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