A Step by Step Guide to Starting a Successful Blog – The Complete Guide for a Blogging Newbie

Looking to start your blogging journey?

I remember back when I first started blogging and I was looking on Pinterest and Google for the ‘perfect’ way to start a blog. Truth is, there is no perfect way! There’s just some ways that are better than others. For example, if you’re looking to monetize your blog, you’ll need to go through a self hosted site and not wordpress .com! I’ll be walking you through the steps that I took to start Jadexo.

PICK A NICHE.

Figuring out your niche is a good starting point. Do you want to blog about Fashion, Cooking, Beauty etc? Or do you want to go with a variety of topics (like me!) and start a blog with a variety of categories (a blog with a variety of categories is typically the ‘lifestyle’ niche). Developing your niche before creating a blog name is crucial for figuring out what you want your blog to be called purely because it’s ideal to include your niche in your blog name. For example, if you were starting a style blog and your name was Sam, you would consider something along the lines of ‘SamsStyleFiles’ etc. You want your audience to know what they’re getting into.

YOUR BLOG NAME.

The best thing to do when picking your blog name is remembering to make it PERSONAL. Something short and sweet, precise and straight to the point (or in this case, your niche)! Because my blog covers a variety of topics, I chose to incorporate my name into it because it’s MY lifestyle blog. So it’s all experiences from my life, therefore the reason why I called it Jadexo. The ‘xo’ was just a little touch to make it more interesting! I’ve had previous blogs in the past where the name didn’t work for me and I ended up abandoning those blogs purely because the name was either too long, not personal, or literally had nothing to do with what I was blogging about. I wasn’t motivated enough purely because I HATED the blog name. I think it’s important to pick something that you really believe in, and while you’re at it, make sure whatever you pick is available on social media. Jadexo was not available on all social media channels so I used jadexoau instead because I’m also located in Australia!

SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS & EMAIL MARKETING.

If possible, set this up before you actually launch your blog! Social media and email marketing can be used to build up a following and possible readers before you launch your blog. Allow yourself a time frame of at least a month to try and build up a following. Follow other bloggers and potential readers but please whatever you do, do NOT do the follow to unfollow method. That will show potential readers that you’re untrustworthy and they won’t be interested in reading your blog at all!

– SOCIAL MEDIA

My main social media accounts are Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.  Instagram is by far my most popular account. Pinterest can be amazing for blog traffic too!

– EMAIL MARKETING

The email marketing platform I use is MailerLite. I’m still slowly building my email list because I didn’t do it until much later after starting my blog (don’t make my mistake!). If you go through a self hosted wordpress site (more on this soon!) there is a plugin for this email marketing platform called Official MailerLite Sign Up Forms. Another recommended one is MailChimp but I personally prefer MailerLite because it has a drag and drop customiser built into the platform which means creating emails is super easy & stress free!

BLOGGING PLATFORM.

There are a variety of blogging platforms to use, however if you want to start a successful blog where you can make money, you NEED a self hosted wordpress .org site! Other platforms are wordpress .com, blogger, weebly, squarespace etc. However you do NOT have as much freedom when it comes to customising your blog. If you have a self hosted wordpress site, you have complete control & ownership over your site. You have the ability to use affiliate links and ads whereas some blogging platforms like wordpress .com etc don’t even allow you to post ads or affiliate links!

HOSTING.

If you go with the self hosted wordpress option, (which by the way, if you’re looking to be a successful blogger who is making money, that’s the exact platform you NEED). There are a variety of hosting sites available but my favourite by far is SiteGround. SiteGround has 24/7 support so if you get stuck setting up your hosting (or transferring your old site) you can easily reach out to them and they will help you within seconds! It’s about $4.95 AUD per month (I’m pretty sure they expect you to pay a year up front) but this means you have complete control over your site. You can monetize your blog, customise it to be the exact way you want it to be etc! After you install your hosting, make sure to install wordpress onto your hosting server! If you have trouble installing wordpress .org onto your hosting server, check in with the support team and they’ll be able to help you out. If you’re considering SiteGround, click on the image above to go straight to their website!

 

ESSENTIAL PAGES.

Some crucial pages to have for your blog is an about me section, a contact page, a privacy policy (especially if you’re collecting private information for email marketing etc) and a disclosure/disclaimer (if you use affiliate links etc). There are plenty of sites where you can generate free privacy policies and disclosures for your blog! Just look through google and you will find a variety. Make sure they’re specific to your country though because different countries have different laws in regards to blogs!

THEME.

Picking a theme for your blog is important! You have to make sure it’s something that looks clean and professional but something that is obviously appealing to you! I got my theme from Pipdig. I’ve previously used Station Seven for themes as well but another great place to look is Etsy or Creative Market! Make sure you have a primary colour theme, mine is white and pink. So choosing a theme that would work well with your primary colours is important! Just remember that if you go with a self hosted wordpress site, you need a theme compatible with wordpress .org!

SITE LOGO & HEADER.

I recommend using Canva to create your site logo and header! I created my header in Canva and couldn’t be more happy with how it turned out. There is so much design control in Canva with just the free version! You can also use PicMonkey or Photoshop if you’re a little more advanced. I used to use photoshop but couldn’t really get my head around it so I gave up and cancelled my subscription! Plus if you have a subscription and cancel it early you get a cancellation fee which is just down right cruel! You already pay so much per month for photoshop as it is so I just don’t think it’s worth it when you can already do so much in Canva!

SET UP SOME PLUG INS FOR YOUR BLOG.

There is a variety of plug ins available for your blog and you can find so many that will be helpful! Searching pinterest or google for plugins is a good place to start but some of my favourites are Askimet, Yoast SEO and UpDraft Plus.

I hope these tips help you start an incredible blog and I look forward to hearing all about it!

Until next time,

Jadexo

*This post contains affiliate links*

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