How to start a lifestyle blog
BEFORE WE BEGIN: WHY START A LIFESTYLE BLOG?
I became upon the idea a year ago when I really started getting into Pinterest. When I click on their blog pictures and Pinterest took me to their blog post. I love the content and information that I was getting from their sites. So, I started researching, decided on my niche, then name for my blog, and rest was history.
There are so many great reasons to start a blog today! Let’s talk about the obvious one first – money. Yes, you can earn money blogging. The best part is that because I make a living from my blog, I can stay home with my babies and work from here! The best part is that now, I can wake up every day and do exactly what I want to do!
The nice thing about blogging is that you don’t have to make money to love it. This is a challenging process because you are stepping out of faith that everything will come together and you will catch on to the affiliate marketing, newsletter, content, banners, SEOs, and much more. Don’t worry cause the connections and sense of community that the blogging world offers is amazing. As a matter of fact, I blogged for many months before making any money at all. Don’t let anyone try and tell you blogging is an easy, get right quick thing. It takes a LOT of work, but I still believe it is one of the BEST business a stay-at-home-mom, student (or anyone!) can start because of the LOW startup cost and unlimited potential. It was challenging to find my niche because it seems like I wanted to talk about everything. Then I sat down and decided I will do a Lifestyle blog about my life as a mother and business woman.
My recommendation is to get into it because it’s something you enjoy doing. Making money is totally fine and is something you should think about from day one, but that shouldn’t be your #1 motivation
STEP ONE: CHOOSE YOUR BLOG TOPIC
What are you interested in? Blogging about what interests you is very important. Whether it be about Fashion, Food, Travel, Motherhood, Lifestyle, Health and body, etc. If you like the topic, and are interested in what you’re writing about, your readers will pick up on that. Stay true to your brand and content. If you are a Fashion blogger don’t go into politics unless your favorite designer is running or campaigning for office or a candidate. Look under my 101 Blog Post Ideas for Fashion, Beauty, and Lifestyle if you are going down that niche. It will help you with Blog Post Ideas and content.
What are you good at? Finding what you are good at will not be hard for some. What the question will be for you is what should I narrow my niche down to? Other it’s as simple as your favorite hobby or the career you are in right now. So, if you have a skill that you think should be shared with the world, a blog is the perfect place to do it! Do you excel in the kitchen? Start a food blog! Are your friends always asking you for fashion advice? Perhaps fashion blogging is the way to go. If you can offer tips and generally help people out, they will flock to your blog.
STEP TWO: CHOOSE THE PROPER PLATFORM
WordPress as a blogging platform. Here are a few reasons why WordPress is the best platform for blogging:
- Great for beginners
- Tons of free themes available
- Easily customizable, even if you have no coding knowledge
- There are tons of free plugins that make just about everything easier
- WordPress is the most commonly used platform, and therefore there are tons of resources out there providing help, should you get stuck
Blogger, is a blog-publishing service that allows multi-users blogs with time-stamped entries. Generally, the blogs are hosted by Google at a subdomain of blogspot.com
Weebly, is a web-hosting service featuring a drag-and drop website builder. Weebly is a free site but if you want their Pro plan to access more interesting website builder tools then you must pay $9.00 a month or Business Pro Plan at $21.00 a month
You also have these two platforms for blogging also: Wix, and Yola to choose from if you want to start a blog.
STEP THREE: get You a URL OR DOMAIN NAME
Domain names put a friendly face on hard-to-remember numeric Internet addresses. Every computer on the Internet has a unique Internet Protocol (IP) number. A domain name represents one IP number or more.
Tips on choosing a domain name:
I RECOMMEND GODADDY.COM FOR YOUR DOMAIN NAME
Also, others like Bluehost.com
Hover.com, HostGator.com and NameCheap.com to name a few.
Key in the domain you want to buy, and pay a fee. You can’t buy just any domain, of course—only one that isn’t already registered by another person or business and that bears a valid domain suffix. In general, you’ll want to buy something that is catchy and short so that it’s both easy for people to remember, and easy for them to type in.
Even when you register and pay for your domain name, you won’t necessarily be able to use the name for several hours or even a few days. The domain must propagate, meaning that the official domain name registry must be updated with your website’s Domain Name System information. That’s something that occurs on the backend without any need of input from you.
Some registrars promise to have the name up nearly immediately, but the delay can be up to seven days. Typically, though, you should expect to see the domain name up and running on the Web within 48 hours.
STEP FOUR: GET HOSTING
Choose a web hosting
The first thing you must decide when starting a blog is if you should go self-hosted or free hosted. I know it sounds kind of technical if you’re a newbie, but no worries, this is much easier than it seems.
What is a web hosting?
Web hosting is a service that allows organizations and individuals to post a website or web page onto the Internet. A web host, or web hosting service provider, is a business that provides the technologies and services needed for the website or webpage to be viewed in the Internet. Websites are hosted, or stored, on special computers called servers.
If you want to start a blog, you’re going to need a web hosting, which means the “place” where your blog lives.
When it comes to web hosting, you have two options: being self-hosted, of being free-hosted.
Since we’re going to talk about WordPress in a minute, you probably heard about WordPress.com and WordPress.org. The main (and only) thing that you must know about these two, is that:
- WordPress.com is to create a free-hosted blog
- WordPress.org is for those who want a self-hosted blog.
And NO, the paid version of WordPress.com is NOT the same thing as a self-hosted platform. You’re just paying for them to allow you to do more things, but they still own your content and they still get to decide what you can do or not on your blog.
Ok, so what’s the difference between self-hosting and free-hosting?
To start a blog that you can monetize (that makes you earn an income), you need to be self-hosted. You might be thinking, “Why would I pay for a blog when I can have it for free?”
Step 5: Install WordPress
Let’s talk about WordPress.org for a minute. I am a WordPress user, and always have been.
Honestly, I heard so many bad things about Blogger and other platforms when I started my blog, I just couldn’t take that risk, and in the end, I’m still convinced that I made the right choice!
WordPress.org allows you to own all of you content, which is super important if you ever want to turn your blog into a business.
You can install WordPress directly from your control panel, and this is honestly the simplest thing to do.
- When you are in your cPanel, click on “Install WordPress”
- Click on the “Start” button.
- Once in the installation starts, you will have to decide which domain you will want to install WordPress on. Click the dropdown menu to the domain you just create.
- Now, you will see “Advanced Options.” This is where you choose your username and password for your WordPress website. (You should choose something secure.) You will want to check “Automatically create a new database for this installation” as well, unless you already have a different database (if you don’t know, then you probably do not).
- Click “Install Now.”
- You now have a WordPress blog!
Step 6: Appearance Matters
As soon as you created your blog, you’re going to need a theme. WordPress has some good free themes that you can use, but you can also buy you own theme if you’re not satisfied with those. I have free theme called Selma. I like it because it was easy for me to operate and the appearance. Be aware of when choosing your blog theme, YES, it is matters that the appearance of your blog because nobody wants to look at a boring, (un)attractive website theme. Writing great blog posts don’t make everything, your readers will also be (un)attracted by your blog’s visual. People will be more likely to read a blog that looks pretty, that is ergonomic, easy to run through, than a blog that has quality content but looks like a mess.
If I could give you just two more tips about choosing your blog theme, I’d say find a theme that choose bright colors and inviting design, it will make your blog so much more appealing.
I stumbled upon a blog the other day. He had good content but his posts were way too long and his theme was boring and uninviting. I would read an article if the pictures, content, style, and information was inviting and interesting. On the other hand, I would run away from a site that was boring in style, content, and pictures…that’s just me!!!
So, check out the Themes and pick the best one that goes with your niche and your personality; Have Fun with designing and don’t forget to brand the heck out of your website with your contents, products, and pictures.
Step 7: Create Your Blog’s Social Media
Hold on, I’m almost done. The last thing you absolutely need to do when starting your blog, is to create your blog’s social media. You’re going to need a place to promote your blog posts and build your community, and that’s what social media are there for. I’m mostly using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Those are according to me the most important ones, I wouldn’t want to delete any of them if I had the occasion to, because each of them benefits my blog in a different way.
TIPS FOR BLOGGING SUCCESS
-Write about what you love. What are you passionate about? What makes you excited and really makes you you? If you write about things that you truly love, chances are your writing will be better and others will love reading it!
-Be consistent. Whether you’re blogging once a day or once a week, consistency is key!
-Be ethical. Disclose properly for products and payments received in return for posts, and don’t plagiarize or steal ideas and images.
-Make your blog beautiful! Spend time (or money) making the small design details of your blog perfect for you!
-Be active on social media. Don’t automate all your accounts. Rather, be present on each platform that you’re trying to build. People like you for you and your personality should sine through!
-Take pride in the pictures that you put on your blog. This is all your- own it!
-Steer clear of any blog drama! It is not worth your time. If you don’t have anything nice to say, just don’t say anything at all!
-Most importantly: HAVE FUN! If you’re not enjoying what you are doing, you are more likely to give up. Plus, it will come through in your content, and others will be able to tell that you aren’t enjoying it, too.
Check out my Blogging Resource Library to find the tools you need to grow your blog. Everything I use is there!
Please don’t forget to share / pin this post if you found it useful!