Writing a blog gets you into the habit of writing regularly and it will give you the opportunity to showcase your written work. You could earn some money from it too.
Welcome to the latest post in the series: “How to earn a living writing”. In this post, I will discuss how useful blogging can be; not just as a way of earning money, but also as a great way to get you into the habit of writing regularly.
Setting up a blog is a great way to get your new writing career underway. If you have never written regularly before, writing for your own blog will help get you into a routine and you will be able to publish something that the world can see in a matter of an hour so and then you can, hand on heart say that you are a writer! How to make money from a blog is the topic of a future post, but for now, here are the basics to get you started.
- Choose your niche
- Create your free blog
- Choose your template
- Start posting
- Tell the world about your blog
- Monetize your blog
Choose your niche
Your blog is your writer’s fun time, so choose something that you are genuinely interested in and passionate about for the topic of your blog. It could be health and beauty tips, jewellery, gardening, home brewing, cars, or practically anything you like. Remember, though, that this is your public showcase, so don’t choose any subjects that some of your potential customers might find offensive, or off putting!
Although you can’t expect to make a lot of money from your blog to begin with, it is also worth considering what you might be able to sell on your blog in the future when you are deciding on a niche topic. Have a quick search on Amazon and check how many products they have for sale, which are related to your chosen subject as a guide.
Create your free blog
There are two main blogging platforms; WordPress and blogger. Blogger, which is owned by Google, is completely free and the easiest to set up and use, and that is the one I would recommend that you start with. You simply browse to www.blogger,com and follow the instructions, or you can find a helpful, step by step guide here at http://www.wikihow.com/Start-a-Blog-on-Blogger
Choose your template
You can get very fancy with your blog and there are lots of enhancements that you can make to it, but blogger also provides plenty of free templates that will define how your blog will look. How to apply your template is also explained in this guide http://www.wikihow.com/Start-a-Blog-on-Blogger and you can always change the template later, without losing any of your posts. It’s really easy to do and you don’t need any technical knowledge.
Yep, that’s it! Now you are ready to start your new life as a published writer, but don’t get too carried away yet. Remember that this is going to be the showcase of your ability as a writer, so do take your posting here seriously. Think about the guidelines mentioned in my post: “How to write a Content Article” and make sure that your post are also of a decent length. Each post should be a minimum of 500 words, and ideally around 750 words. Each post should include at least one image. You can find royalty free images at www.pixabay.com or on https://commons.wikimedia.org, but be sure to give the original author of the image credit, if that is what is asked. Don’t use other peoples images, without authorisation, or you could find yourself being sued!
Tell the world about your blog
Don’t sit back waiting for them to come, because they won’t unless you tell them where it is! There are a lot of things that you can do to publicise your blog and attract organic traffic from Google, but this is just the beginning, so you can start by telling your friends and family where your blog is and ask them to tell their friends too. You can tweet about it in your new Twitter account that we talked about in the post: “The Tools You Need to Begin Your Career as a Content Writer”, when you make a new blog post, and you can publish a link to it on your new Facebook page and you can add to your Google+ profile. Take a look at other bookmarking sites too, such as www.pinterst.com, www.thebingbing.com and www.reddit.com, where you can publish links to your work.
It will take a while before you start to see the number of views on your blog increasing and the best way to get a decent number of views is to post quality articles, regularly. The easiest way to start earning money from your blog is to place Google AdSense advertisements which you can do from within the blogger control panel itself. Wait until you have a reasonable number of posts on your blog, say twenty or so, to make sure that you get approved for AdSense.
Later on in your blogging career, when your blog has matured a little, you can look at applying for an Amazon Associates account so you can sell their products for a commission on your site, or look at joining an affiliate partnership programme, which will allow you to place specific sellers advertisements on your account for which you will be paid commissions on any purchases. Once your blog gets established, there are loads of advertising opportunities available, so do a bit of searching in Google and find ones that will suit you the best.
How much you will earn from Google AdSense, will depend on the number of visitors you get and the value of each click through on an ad. Google measure this in an indicator called RPM, which indicates how much you can earn per thousand page views. So, if you have an RPM of $1.00, a figure which you can find on your AdSense dashboard, then, for every thousand visitors you get to your blog, you can expect to earn $1.00.
That may not sound like a lot of money, but 1,000 views is not a lot in internet terms and remember, this is only the beginning of your earnings potential as a writer
So why blog?
Blogging is the first of your long term investments in your writing career and it will, in time, provide you with a regular income stream in your writing business. It’s fun. You can make money doing it, and it will help get you into the habit of writing regularly. You can also track the views that you get your blog, so it’s a great way to see what types of articles work and which ones don’t and that will help you when you are writing for paying customers.
The final reason for blogging is the long term investment value of a good blog. It could earn you a passive income and, if you move your blog to a custom domain, you could even one day sell your blog lock, stock and domain name, for a sizeable amount of money.
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