Do you want to start your own WordPress Blog, but you’re not sure what to do or how to do it?
IT CAN BE SO FRUSTRATING
But don’t worry, you’ve made a great decision and it’s really not as hard as you may think
When blogging first started, the first blogs were really just people’s online journals, and in all likelihood, becoming a blogger and making money online probably wasn’t the goal for most people.
Things have changed greatly since the early days, and people now blog for lots of different reasons.
Blogs now seem to fall in to different categories, magazine blogs, food blogs, business blogs, lifestyle, health and well being, sports….the list is almost endless
Here area few reasons you should have a blog
HELPS TO ESTABLISH YOURSELF AS AN AUTHORITY
Most people online return to the same websites all the time. The ones that are interesting to them and that give them what they want. When you have a blog, you can create value for your readers and establish yourself as an authority in your topic.
GIVES YOU POTENTIAL TO EARN AN INCOME
Earning an income from your blog is definitely possible, especially once you have created great content and grown your readership around your blog.
I’m sure you know of at least one big blog that make thousands of dollars every year.
IT CAN BE USED AS YOUR ONLINE HUB
You can use your blog to be the centre point of everything that you do online.
It can become the focal point of everything that you do, which then makes it easy for your customers to know where to go and makes it easy for you to let them know your latest news.
GIVES YOU A PLATFORM TO EXPRESS YOURSELF
Having a blog gives you a great platform for you to share your knowledge and what you are passionate about.
When you start to discuss the things that you are passionate about, and when done in the right way, it can be both emotionally and financially rewarding.
YOU WILL MAKE NEW FRIENDS
You’ll meet people via blog commenting or maybe through social media and email.
On the whole the Blogging community is a very friendly place and most bloggers will be happy to help you and wish you well and the relationships that can be made, last for ages.
Many of my good friends are people I met while blogging back in 2009, Robert Corrigan and Mandy Allen are just two examples of prolific Bloggers that I met and still keep in touch with.
YOU WILL BE ABLE TO HELP OTHER PEOPLE
You have a chance to help and inspire other people.
By sharing your knowledge and expertise, you’ll be able to help other people move forward on their path – Personally, this is the biggest reason I blog. I think this is by far the most rewarding part of blogging
That seems like enough reasons to start with, but before we get started with the details, let me ask you a question…
How Many Successful Marketers Do you Know That Don’t Have A Blog?
It’s a fact that most of the successful marketers you know own a blog.
Starting a blog of your own can be one of the greatest and wisest decisions you will ever make in your online Marketing career.
It’s a given that blogs can provide you with an opportunity to make an income for yourself!
Unfortunately, if you don’t know how to do everything yourself, you can waste countless hours trying to work out how to do everything.
And even if you do manage to piece it all together you may find that you wear yourself out and realise it wasn’t the fun times that you hoped it would be
Maybe you can understand and feel exactly what I am talking about here because not that long ago, when I first started I was in the same position.
I know, in the beginning, I was frustrated for a long time.
I knew I wanted to share my message but at the time I had no real technical skills and to be honest I really didn’t know how to do any of the WordPress stuff, let alone the blogging stuff…perhaps you can relate to this!
The good news is, after 14 years of trials and error, I know exactly what to do and when to do it, to have an amazing looking blog, that you can be proud of.
And now I can ease your pain by sharing with you everything that I know about Blogging and WordPress.
So Let’s get started
- An Introduction To Blogging
- Your Blog’s Focus
- Writing Unique Content
- How to Write Effective Blog Titles
An introduction to Blogging
So, you have decided you want to start a blog, great decision!
Whether you are doing it to make money from your blog, as a hobby, (maybe even both!) or to use it to help you promote your other business or products, a blog is a crucial part of any strategy for building an online presence.
Unfortunately, there has been a bit too much false information out there to suggest all you need to do is get a blog set up, write a few posts and hey presto, people will be flocking to your site to see what you have to say, or buy whatever you are selling.
If that were true, I am sure everyone would have a blog – and those who already do have blogs would be living the high life sipping drinks on the beach!
Blogging can be quite simple, but many people quite simply get it wrong!
They think they can just throw up a page and write about anything, in any fashion, and it’s okay.
To a certain extent, they are right, however to be a good blogger you need to consider some simple rules.
Essentially the more unique quality content you post to your blog the better it is for you.
When you get into some of the more detailed things, like writing your posts with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in mind, checking stats to understand where visitors are coming from and leaving your site, adding income streams to your blog, marketing and getting traffic.
Search engines love unique content and they glaze over duplicate content as if it isn’t there.
Also the more links you have coming into your blog the better your website ranking with the search engines will be.
Meaning. you’ll appear higher in the search results.
Blogging itself is not difficult.
You can actually write about, more or less, any topic you choose.
Some people like to have a focus with their blogs, a niche that they can stick to.
This helps if you are trying to promote products, or maybe you are producing your own product along the same lines.
If a reader knows you cover a particular topic and have associated products on offer they can be assured of finding something of interest on your blog.
It’s as simple as using your voice, sharing your opinions, try to engage your readers – and most of all trying to have fun!
It doesn’t need to be complicated and so for now, let’s just worry about getting your blog set up and ready for the world.
Get some posts written to start building the site up a bit – and worry about the rest later!
Your Blog’s Focus
The first step you want to do, is understand what your blog will be focusing on.
If it is a hobby of yours, then you obviously know exactly what market you will be targeting.
If it is a blog set up to promote a business, then you will want to be targeting people who will benefit from whatever your business offers.
I don’t believe in the whole focusing it down to a small niche, or finding the right keywords to target and use in your domain.
I am sure that if you have been researching how to start blogging, you will have heard something along those lines by now.
My thoughts on this are that if you scale down the focus too much, you could easily run out of things to talk about.
But, on the other hand, you don’t want your focus to be too broad either, or you won’t ever get any dedicated readers who keep coming back.
Try to find some middle ground.
My own blog is simply blog that focuses on WordPress, Blogging and using both to create Info Products
There really is no right or wrong at this point, because as you go, you can always expand your focus if you have to, or scale it down if you find yourself going more in one direction.
Don’t let yourself get caught up too much with the analyzing your niche potential right now, because you won’t really know until you get writing and start bringing traffic in, what your real focus should be.
I am telling you this now because you don’t want to choose a domain name that will leave you stuck in a really small niche that won’t let you expand later if you need to.
For example, if you set up, “mygreatrecipes.com” – you won’t ever really be able to write about anything other than cooking.
BUT – if that is what you are great at, and you love talking about it and showing people about it, then BY ALL MEANS – set up a domain like that in this tightly focused niche.
It will be easier for you to build your following with a smaller niche like this, and if you can see yourself staying with it, then it will be great for you down the road.
But, most people starting out know they have interests in a certain area, and want to keep some of their options open a bit more because they worry they will “run out of” ideas about what to say.
Then in this case, set up a blog with a more “generic” domain name that can be used however the blog starts to grow in the future.
I know this likely goes against what a lot of other people advise, but in my opinion – and my own experience – those who spend too much time trying to figure this out, often give up because they just can’t decide what to really focus their blog on.
They worry that if it’s too narrow of a topic, they will run out of ideas….but all the experts say to do that.
And, if they start out with too broad of a topic, no one will know what they are focusing on and it will be impossible to build a following.
Let me tell you a little secret….
it takes quite a while to build any kind of following. So, use this time to write and find what direction your blog is taking on its own.
If you have the idea and are getting started at least doing something, then you are ahead of the people who are still trying to decide where to begin!
Writing unique content is crucial to successful blogging.
If you have content that is copied and pasted in to your blog the search engines will see it as duplicate content and they will take no notice of it when they crawl your site.
Keep everything you put into your blog posts unique.
If you invite guest bloggers to post on to your site be sure they are not just copying a post they have previously entered onto their own site. A totally re-written post is fine, but it must have a uniqueness to it.
If you seriously want your blog to be noticed by the search engines this is the number one rule – UNIQUE CONTENT – ALWAYS.
Keep your blog fresh.
Post your unique content frequently and regularly.
Have a plan and stick to it.
If you post once a week or every ten days keep that going.
Posting once a month is not enough, be more frequent than that.
KISS – Keep It Short and Simple.
Keep your posts short and to the point. A lot of readers don’t go onto blogs to read a novel; they visit for a quick read. If your post gets too long it should be turned into an article and a shorter synopsis can be posted onto the blog.
This is still unique content but your topic can be expanded upon in articles, reports or even your product. The advantage of this is you can link through to your blog from the article directory and vice versa.
Always try to use small paragraphs. Break your post into small bites for people to digest easily.
Equally, sentences should be short and to the point.
Do not ramble aimlessly towards a full stop some lines down.
Put your profile on your blog so people know who you are. It has been proven time and again how important this is in establishing trust with customers.
People feel more comfortable buying from someone they know and eventually you will want to promote something to your blog readers.
Even better, add a photo so they can see you too, or a short video of yourself.
How to Write Effective Blog Titles
Why is this important?
Well, first thing your visitors see once they land on your website, are your titles.
So this can either make or break that desire for your visitors to click your blog posts or page.
The blog title must be a bridge to your blog body, so what I mean by that is, whatever title you use, the body must fulfill that title so that eventually your visitor can take some sort of action.
There’s nothing worse for a reader to experience what we call ‘bait and switch’. reading a sensational headline to then discover the content is not relevant at all to the title.
A sure way to lose readers in my opinion.
So if you promise something, or you have some sort of intriguing title, that must be fulfilled inside the body.
So let me give you some examples of titles that you can use.
We’ve got promises versus negative titles. And the promise titles generally work in more positive realms.
So for example,
“How to Effectively Do This to Gain This”
“How to Effectively Build a WordPress Site to Gain _______” (more conversions, or something.)
And then we have a negative title, which tends to do a lot better, especially if somebody is facing a problem, wants to avoid something, and doesn’t want to lose something.
In fact, most people want to avoid losing something and which sticks out a lot further, so something that would looks like this would be
“Number of Mistakes That _____ Will Make, and How to Avoid Them.”
So number of mistakes that, let’s say a WordPress site owner will make when doing this, and how to avoid them.
So these are both good and effective titles, but statistically, the negative one tends to do a lot better.
But you need to know your audience and you need to know the type of people who you’re audience is made up of, because positive people often dislike negative titles.
So you need to know your audience first, and then from that point, do split testing – use different titles and see which one works the best.
We’ve only scratched the surface so far but this may give you a little idea of the kind of things that you need to think about on your blogging journey
Best wishes on your Blogging and WordPress adventure
PS – There are lots of WordPress videos which accompany this guide, click here to see the WordPress Section