Lisa is a blogger and web designer at Sassy Boss. She helps non-tech women start a blog and grow it into a successful business.
How To Become A Successful Blogger And Make Money Online
Are you wondering how to become a successful blogger and make money online?
Starting a blog is a great business idea for stay-at-home-moms or anyone who wants to work from home and start a low investment online business.
The blogger lifestyle definitely sounds ideal and has plenty of advantages. Who doesn't want to work in their yoga pants, be creative and get paid for it?
But is it really that easy?
Well, I'll be honest with you, starting a blog is achievable by most people, but growing a blog into a successful money making business is a challenge.
Blogging is not a get-rich-quick-scheme, it takes time, hard work, and persistence.
But it is definitely possible and extremely rewarding!
So if you're up for a challenge, let me walk you through the 7 steps to starting a successful blog!
Let's dive in!
How To Become A Successful Blogger In 7 Steps
1. Plan Your Blog
Don't expect to become a successful blogger by writing about random topics and hope your content goes viral.
The chance of this happening is about 1 in a million, so this isn't the road you want to take.
So what do you need to do?
The main thing to do, if you want to start a successful blog, is make a plan. You need to plan all the details of your blog.
Ask yourself important questions like: What is your blog topic? Who is your target audience? How will you monetise your blog? Who are your competitors? Etc.
Planning your blog is crucial. It gives you the chance to discover flaws in your idea and take time to improve on it.
If you are serious about starting a successful blog and need some help planning it, make sure to go to my profile to get my Free Blog Planner.
2. Choose Your Niche
The most important part of planning your blog is choosing the right blog niche.
Because you want your blog to be successful, you need to think carefully about this, because not every topic will be ideal.
When choosing a blog topic, you need to make sure it has a combination of 3 things:
- Demand > Are people looking for this topic, product or service?
- Your knowledge or skills > What can you help your audience with?
- Profitability > Are there opportunities to make money?
If you find a blog topic that combines these 3 attributes, your blog will have a good foundation for success.
To make your blog stand out from the crowd, it will also help to niche down. Niching down means you pick a topic within a topic. For example:
Instead of starting a mom blog, you could start a blog about homeschooling a child with learning difficulties.
Niching down on a specific topic will help you attract an audience that's interested in this precise topic. It will also make you the dedicated expert that they like and trust.
Building trust is important because an audience that trusts you is more likely to buy from you.
3. Brand Your Blog
Another way to instil trust in your audience is by creating a cohesive brand for your blog. Branding basically means that you create a consistent look and feel that people come to recognise and trust.
This means you need to be consistent with:
- Your voice (the way you write and speak)
- Brand colours
- Graphic style
- Avatar (your profile picture on social platforms)
You don't have to make this complicated and you don't need to be a graphic designer to pull this off. Just be consistent with your style so your audience will recognise and remember you.
4. Use The Right Blogging Platform
To prepare your blog for success, you need to start blogging on the right blogging platform.
Your blogging platform is the foundation of your blog, so it's important to get this right.
This means you have to ditch the free blogging platforms and set up a self hosted blog with Wordpress.org.
When you use Wordpress.org and buy web hosting, it means you OWN your site. This is important, because you don't want to set up a business that is owned by someone else.
Other advantages of starting a self hosted Wordpress blog are:
- More flexibility in design
- More functionality (you'll be able to add email newsletter sign up forms, ecommerce, video, etc).
- You'll have your own domain name
- Looks more professional
You can start a self hosted blog for a few dollars per month, this makes blogging one of the most affordable business to start.
5. Create Quality Content
The main component of any successful blog is quality content. Without great content you won't attract readers and without readers you won't make any money. It's as simple as that.
So how do you know if your content is good?
You need to make sure your blog posts have a purpose and the topic is in demand.
The easiest way to do this is by creating helpful content that solves a problem for your audience.
Think about the searches you would type into Google to find out information about your chosen blog topic.
- “How to start a blog”
- “How to be a successful blogger”
- “How to make money blogging”
Any question someone might have on this topic can be turned into content. Wether it's a blog post, a social media post or a newsletter, if it helps your audience in some way, there will be a demand for this content.
The best way to create quality content is by practicing. Your first blog post is never going to be your best, but with every post you write your skills will improve.
6. Monetise Your Blog
A truly successful blog is one that makes money, and preferably enough money to replace a full time job.
So how do you achieve this?
If you monetise your blog in several different ways you'll maximise your income potential. It will depend on your niche which monetisation techniques will work the best for your blog.
The most common ways to monetise your blog are:
- Sponsored posts
- Affiliate marketing
- Sell (digital) products
As I said, it will depend on your niche what will work best for you. High traffic blogs (food blogs for example) will benefit from ads, whereas blogs with little traffic will do better with affiliate marketing and offering a service.
Not all of these monetisation strategies are suitable for a new blog. It obviously would take time to set up a membership site or to create digital products like a course or ebook. These strategies would also require you to have an audience to sell to, so it's best to leave these until you've been blogging for a while.
7. Drive Traffic
Last but definitely not least you have to promote your blog. Don't underestimate this part.
If content is King, promotion is Queen.
You need quality content to engage your audience and turn them into raving fans. But without constant promotion, no one will see your content.
The best way to promote your content is with SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). This means you write top quality content and include certain keywords and phrases. This will ensure your post can be found in search engines such as Google.
Ranking your blog on the first page of Google for certain popular search terms will guarantee consistent traffic.
SEO takes a bit of time to learn but it's not as complicated as you might think. The best part about learning to optimise your blog for SEO is that you work on it once and, when done right, you'll get ongoing traffic without further work.
Other ways of promoting your blog will require ongoing work.
Some examples are:
Pinterest marketing is great way to drive traffic to your blog. Pinterest is a visual search engine, so by uploading images with keywords in the title and description your content can be found.
Social Media Marketing on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all good ways to promote your blog. Trying to be present on all platforms might be a recipe for burnout though, so I recommend choosing one that best suits your audience and go from there.
Email marketing is the best way to stay connected to your readers. Send them your best tips and they'll keep returning to your blog for more.
Q&A Forums can become a source of traffic for certain blog niches. Answering questions in forums like Quora will get your name out there and people might click through to your blog.
Guest Posting is beneficial in 2 ways. First of all it builds backlinks to your blog which will help you rank higher in Google and second of all it gives you exposure to a whole new audience. Especially if you write a guest post for a blog in the same niche, that audience is highly likely to be interested in your blog as well.
These are the 7 basic steps of becoming a successful blogger
One more bonus tip: always be authentically yourself and only promote products that you believe in.
Being authentic will help you connect to your audience and after all it's your audience that makes you a successful blogger!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Lisa van der Velde