How To Start A Blog For FREE and Make Money Online
If you want to learn how to start a blog and make money, then read here and get the TEN basic steps on how to do it!
Blogging is for everyone! More and more people are creating their own blogs and many are even making money on them! Admitted! It is a dream life to be your own boss and manage your own working hours! It is a new level of freedom!
Sign Up for the FREE ‘Build Your Blog’ 10 day challenge here to help you start your Blog:
But what is a blog?
A blog is a variation of a website where you can unleash your creativity and your passion through articles and images. You can write about anything! Your life, your feelings, your food, your work, your pets, your cars, your hobbies…
Expressing your Passion and fighting for the things you believe deep down is actually very healthy. Running a blog and converting it to a business is blog business development alongside self-development.
There are no limits. People want to be entertained. People want to find like-minded people. People want to be part of something. People look for stuff that fills all the empty holes within, whether it is the knowledge they hunger for or it is emotions that need to be felt or needs that need to be met.
It’s pretty easy to install WordPress, find a theme, and start writing. Simple as that!
Should I start a Blog?
In fact, there is only one that can answer that question. And that’s YOU! Don’t fool yourself! There IS a lot of work involved in starting a blog and most blog owners have to work hard for 6-12 months to see good results. Well – during this period you should make progress. If not you might have to reconsider your niche.
You don’t need much to create a blog. Passion, Hosting, Time, WordPress and something to write about.
Should I use Blogger.com?
I wouldn’t. I love the control I have using WordPress. I can make WordPress do everything I want. There are not many limits to want is possible with WordPress. You don’t get any free traffic from Blogger. Even though there are thousands of blogs there is NO synergy.
Can I make money blogging?
Absolutely, but you need to be persistent! It doesn’t come overnight! And it takes a lot of work!
Here are some great examples of successful blogs:
The Moz Blog [SEO] – Moz – brings in $45 million per year.
Show Me the Yummy – Easy Recipes for Yummy Food! Brings in $500.000 per year.
Home | Abby Organizes (justagirlandherblog.com) Brings in 450.000 per year (from year 3) and is from 2016.
Fat Stacks Blog – Get Fatter Brings in $250.000 per year (from year 1) and is from 2017.
Believe In A Budget – Believe In A Budget Brings in $180.000 a year
Here is a long list with inspiring and successful blogs you can learn from.
How to Make a Successful Blog
To create a successful blog, there are a few key steps you can follow. First, you’ll need to choose a topic or niche for your blog that you are passionate about and that you know a lot about. This will help you create content that is engaging and informative for your readers.
Next, you’ll need to come up with a unique angle or perspective on your chosen topic to make your blog stand out from the competition. This could be a unique personal experience, a new way of looking at a familiar subject, or a fresh take on a popular trend.
Once you have a clear idea of what your blog will be about, you’ll need to create a website and start publishing high-quality content on a regular basis. This can include written posts, videos, podcasts, or any other format that you think will be interesting and engaging for your audience.
In addition to creating great content, you’ll also need to promote your blog to get it in front of as many people as possible. This can include using social media, email marketing, and other online marketing techniques to drive traffic to your website.
Finally, be patient and persistent. Building a successful blog takes time, so don’t expect overnight success. Keep creating great content and promoting your blog, and over time you should be able to build a loyal audience and a successful blog.
There are a few key points for making a successful blog.
- Write about topics people want to read (and learn from).
- Be consistent. And keep on writing articles and adding new products. Affiliate products or your own.
- Post your article or links to your article everywhere.
- Make sure people sign up for your list.
How to Create A WordPress Blog
- You must have one (or more) topics to write about.
- You need to find a name for your blog.
- You need to find lightning-fast hosting.
- You need to install WordPress and a theme.
- You need to create a mailing list.
- You must write as if your life depended on it!
- You need to do some search engine optimization.
- You need to market your blog because absolutely NOTHING happens if you don’t do something.
- Monetize your blog.
- Go to step 6!
1. How To Find A Topic To Write About.
No matter what people say, it does matter what you choose. There are two things that need to come together.
A. You have to write about something you’re passionate about because that’s the fire people out there can feel and that’s the way they connect with you. When people feel you are passionate about what you write, you touch your real readers’ hearts and lives and they will immediately trust you and you will appear as an authority.
B. You should preferably write about something people can use or would like to read or somehow relate to. It involves finding the words that people are searching for. Key Word Research.
So in other words, you need to find a combination of what you are passionate about and a target group you can serve!
Use Google Alerts and Google Trends. It takes a little while to get familiar with these tools, so you better get started right away.
Google Trends is a website by Google that analyzes the popularity of top search queries in Google Search across various regions and languages. The website uses graphs to compare the search volume of different queries over time.
To use Google Trends, follow these steps:
- Go to the Google Trends website.
- In the search bar at the top of the page, enter a keyword or phrase that you want to search for.
- Press Enter or click on the magnifying glass icon to search for the keyword or phrase.
- Google Trends will show you a graph that compares the search volume of the keyword or phrase over time.
- You can use the options on the left side of the page to narrow down your search, such as by region, time period, and category.
- Always start by zooming out in time. Show everything from 2004 and forward. This way you will see if the keyword is seasonal!
- You can also use the options at the top of the page to compare the search volume of multiple keywords or phrases, or to see related keywords and phrases.
Note: Google Trends does not provide the exact search volume for a keyword or phrase. Instead, it shows the relative popularity of the keyword or phrase, with a value of 100 representing the highest level of popularity. This means that the numbers on the graph do not represent the actual number of searches for the keyword or phrase.
Google Alerts is a tool that allows you to receive notifications whenever Google finds new results for a search query that you specify. You can use Google Alerts to monitor the web for mentions of your name, your business, a specific keyword, or any other topic that you’re interested in.
To use Google Alerts, follow these steps:
- Go to the Google Alerts website.
- In the search bar at the top of the page, enter the keyword or phrase that you want to monitor.
- Choose the type of results that you want to receive notifications for, such as news, web, or video.
- Specify how often you want to receive notifications, such as once a day or once a week.
- Choose where you want to receive the notifications, such as by email or as a notification in the Google app.
- Click on the “Create Alert” button to create your alert.
After you create an alert, Google will automatically search the web for new results that match your specified keyword or phrase, and will send you notifications whenever it finds any new results. You can manage your alerts and edit or delete them at any time by going to the Google Alerts website.
BuzzSumo is another great tool to help you find topics to write about.
Buzzsumo is a tool that allows users to analyze the performance of content on social media. It can help users understand which types of content are most popular, who the key influencers are on a given topic, and which websites are generating the most engagement on social media. To use Buzzsumo, you would need to create an account and then enter a keyword or topic that you want to analyze.
The tool will then generate a report that shows you the most popular content on that topic, along with information about the number of shares and engagement it has received on social media. This can help you understand what types of content are most effective and how you can create content that is more likely to be shared on social media.
To use Buzzsumo, you would need to create an account and then enter a keyword or topic that you want to analyze. The tool will then generate a report that shows you the most popular content on that topic, along with information about the number of shares and engagement it has received on social media. You can use this information to understand what types of content are most effective and how you can create content that is more likely to be shared on social media.
Here are the steps for using BuzzSumo:
Go to the Buzzsumo website and create an account. The FREE version is limited to 10 searches a month. Unless you sign up with another email which gives you 10 more searches. The start price is $99 which is far from fair for beginners. But not many tools out there are created to help beginners. The same rule applies everywhere: If you got money, you can get almost everything. If you ain’t got any, then piss off!
Once you have created an account, log in and enter a keyword or topic that you want to analyze.
The tool will generate a report that shows you the most popular content on that topic, along with information about the number of shares and engagement it has received on social media.
Use the information in the report to understand what types of content are most effective and how you can create content that is more likely to be shared on social media.
You can also use the tool to identify key influencers on a given topic and to see which websites are generating the most engagement on social media. This can help you understand who you should be targeting with your content and where you should be promoting it.
Overall, Buzzsumo is a valuable tool for anyone who wants to understand the performance of their content on social media and to create content that is more likely to be shared and engaged with by users.
2. Find A great Name For Your Blog
How about an acupuncture blog called Point and Press? Or a law blog called Scam and Fraud? DontFuckWithDaddy.com? WhatAreYouWaitingFor.com?
The name itself doesn’t mean as much as it did ten years ago. At that time, it was advantageous to put a few keywords in the website URL. E.g.: MindfulnessAndMeditation.com & LeadershipAndAwareness.com. Today I would only use keywords in the article if the URL immediately should reveal exactly what the blog is about.
And I would try to avoid names that can be misunderstood:
You can go for two types of name:
Branding is names like Coca Cola & Nike. If you use your own name in the URL in order to get known under your name or logo, it is branding.
Informative is when the URL reveals what topic you are writing about.
Some times you can combine these two. Like I did with PassionBlogist. Two birds with one stone!
Remember you need to project confidence!
Today, the name in the URL doesn’t matter that much. In terms of getting found in Google search results, it’s the content on the page and the publicity you get from other sites (backlinks) that counts.
BUT a startling name is certainly not uninteresting.
If everything fails you can use your name.
Or you can use these online services: LeanDomainSearch or BustaName.com
Once you have found your name, check if it has been live before here: Way Back Machine.
It’s good to know if it has a bad reputation and Google didn’t like it in the past. It takes Google a long time to forget old grudges!
Also check if there are a lot of spammy backlinks on the domain here: Ahrefs.com
Spammy links can be disavowed in Google, but it is a little extra work.
Of course, you may find a good name that has a good history and good backlinks and thus a higher page rank (which you can also check on ahrefs).
Then you get some free start help right there! SEO experts are looking for these kind of domains all the time.
3. Find Super Fast Hosting.
Speed is paramount today. It’s a critical ranking factor! If your page is slow, Google thinks it’s going to be a bad experience for users and it’s not entirely wrong. People don’t have many seconds of patience when it comes to waiting for a website.
We have tested almost all hosting companies in Denmark and there are only two that really work. That is, the top of the elite. It is not at all the big companies that spend a lot of money on ads.
It’s actually two small companies.
First place unconditionally goes to Nordicway.dk, but they are closely pursued by Webhosting.dk!
These are the only two companies in Denmark that live up to hosting a website that lives
If we are talking the United States we are talking about A2hosting.com, Hostinger.com, and Cloudways.com. But check them! If they don’t upgrade their servers they get behind and that happens to some hosting companies.
4. Install WordPress And Find A Great Theme.
This is the easiest of these stepss. Download WordPress from WordPress.org and upload it to your host. If you’re going to use a theme, then for God’s (or your own) sake, don’t buy themes on Themeforest or similar places. They are a LOT of work and it’s going to be too expensive in the long run.
Either use a free theme like Ashe or find one in WordPress when you get it booted up. You can also spend a small amount of money to buy DIVI and invest a few weeks in getting to know it. DIVI will make everything easier in the long term even if you have to spend time, in the beginning, getting to know the theme. But if you don’t want to spend money go for Ashe. I have started several blogs using Ashe.
You can check Ashe here:
Later when I got DIVI I copied the Ashe design because I liked it so much.
This blog is made using DIVI. DIVI can do anything! I simply cannot recomend DIVI enough! It takes a little while to learn how to use DIVI, but they have a chat support which is SUPER FANTASTIC. It is no less than World Class! They are VERY nice people and they are really helpful. DIVI is not free but it is the least expensive blog builder tool on the market and you can do anything with DIVI. Many companies go from Elementor to DIVI because DIVI costs a lot less. Besides Elementor is a recurring payment. DIVI recurring is only 1/5th of Elementor BUT you can also buy lifetime DIVI in one single payment – which I did. It is one of the best investments I ever made in my business!
DIVI is easy to get started with. There are a ton of onbord templates you can chose from to get started. Read more about DIVI here.
5. Create An Email List
Mail Responders is a jungle!
You can start by installing MailPoet in WordPress. It is a plugin and helps you get people to sign up for your newsletter. With MailPoet you can have up to 2000 mails registered for free. After that, you need to upgrade or find another solution. There is a bit of work in moving mails from one system to another.
You can also sign up to an online mailing list. There are many of them, but they all cost money. They can all be obtained for a low amount of money in the beginning, and then you can purchase functionality as you get more subscribers. Some of them get real expensive fast!
We have used Imnica Mail. They are inexpensive, but the design of mail series is a bit cumbersome with them. And I just learned they closed down their bservices in 2022! There are GetResponse.com, Aweber.com, MailChimp and we just have to remember OHWO.com which is a $7 a month system that works pretty well. Here you get all the functionality from the start and only have to upgrade when you hit some higher mail limits. Very reasonably built, so people who are not yet making money can also join in.
We use MaianResponder.com which costs a lump sum of $75 and can be installed in a sub-library under your website. Unfortunetely there is a lot of work with Maian and if you are not very technical, do not choose Maian! The Maian Responder cannot filter spam mails at the moment and this is a huge problem they are working on. Take MailPoet instead. The free version of Maian only supports one campaign.
I loved Maian in the beginning as it is very elegant. But in time the spam signup presented a huge problem and I won’t use it until they get it integrated with Google Captcha.
6. Ready To Write
Writing is a mixture of discipline and inspiration. If the inspiration is not present, use the discipline and discover that inspiration will show up! Magic!
Regularity is important! Decide how often/what days you want to publish new articles.
You can find images on Pexels.com or Pixabay.com. And there are several others, but you’ll go a long way with these two. Be careful about using Google to find free images!!! They’re not that good at finding free images.
I made some research on how much a blogger needs to write in order to get momentum.
CreateAndGo has 82 articles in total. Every article is 4,000 – 4,500 words. This means a total of 369,000 words. But do not despair! They have been here for 10 years, and they were profitable after the first 3 years. This is not their first blog. They had experience with at least one weight loss blog beforehand. They registered CreateAndGo in 2016 and published:
- 11 articles in 1016
- 14 articles in 2017
- 15 articles in 2018
- 9 articles in 2019
- 4 articles in 2021
- 28 articles in 2022
In 2019, three years after launch, they publish the first article written by their first SEO & YouTube specialist, and in 2020 they published the first article of yet a new team member. This means they posted 40 articles (a total of 180,000 words) in the first three years, which made them a blog that pays 1 million dollars per. Year in 2022.
Faststack blog has a formula for niche sites with display ads that says:
165 articles x $75. This corresponds to articles with 750 – 1,500 words, (approximately 165,000 words) depending on quality. But keep in mind, this is for attracting organic Google traffic to make money on display ads.
He hires people to write articles for his blogs.
How long is the ideal length of an article?
- If you are writing for SEO, the optimal length is 2,100-2,400 words.
- If you are writing to get leads, the optimal length is 2.500 words.
- If it is a pillar page, we are talking 4,000 words.
- If it is a listicle we need 2,300-2,600 words.
- If it is a How To post, a length of 1,700-2,100 words is fine.
Google is kind of crazy. It is like an article needs to be HUGE in order to make it in Google. But some articles can be made really simple. If a Google user searches for “Is quinoa gluten-free”, it doesn’t take a 4.000-word article to explain Yes it is gluten-free! In fact, no one is going to read a 4,000-word article for that answer. Some articles can be really great even if they only have a few words. Quantity counts at least as much as quality.
Same with images. If you have an image blog with 4,500 images you won’t get ranked at all! But if you write 4,500 articles for each image containing 4,000 words you WILL rank high.
Google will need to do something about this in the near future.
Compare these writing statistics to what authors on Amazon need to write. The traditional formula on Amazon is to write 4 books with 300 pages a year. Each book has 70,000 – 90,000 words. This means that a lot of authors within one year can produce 280,000 – 360,000 words.
7. Search Engine Optimization.
Now you need to do keyword analysis. You can do this by signing up for a Google Ads account and using their online keyword tool. It’s free.
You need to find keywords people are using. Keywords that don’t have too much competition while still having a decent search volume.
Keywords with low competition are easier to rank for, but the search volume is lower. Therefore, you may need to create more articles based on other keywords to get enough traffic.
Then you look through your text and find places you can merge your keywords into your text naturally.
You can also swap step 6 and 7, so you have the keywords before you start writing, but the risk is that you will write articles for the search engines instead of your readers!
Researching keywords takes some time. You need keywords with as high search volume as possible AND AT THE SAME TIME as low competition as possible!
I based this article on these keywords:
“How 2 Create A Blog”
“To Create A Blog”
“Creating Your Own Free Blog Using WordPress”
“Setting Up A Free Blog Using WordPress Step By Step”
It is a little tricky to set up a Google Ads Account. They REALLY want you to create a campaign and spend money right away, but in this video, I show you how to set up Google Ads without creating a campaign and without entering credit card information. We ONLY want access to the free keyword tool.
One thing I didn’t mention in the video is you should download your keywords to a CSV file BECAUSE the data in this file is much more specific than those you see in the Keyword Tool!
8. Promote Your Blog
Driving traffic to your blog is vital! You’ll need to spend too much of your time doing that in the beginning. But there’s no way around it. You can get traffic from keyword optimization. You can get a lot more by using social media, and you can get the most by using Google Ads. But Google Ads is expensive and doesn’t always pay off. Therefore, there are many who burn their fingers on it.
It’s also not a bad idea to make free traffic work first. Then it’s easier to get a direction on Google Ads, so you don’t waste as much money on ads.
Sign up to a Pinterest account or create a Facebook group/page where you can gather people together over time and post your articles. Regular posting is a must.
For some, Twitter can be a great place to post.
Or maybe your audience is on Instagram?
Instagram and Pinterest speak to great pictures and if you can find the right pictures, you can also attract readers.
And then your email signup must be active in getting visitors to your page. Newsletters are great at driving traffic and those who sign up are interested! So make them regular visitors/customers.
Personally, I use Pinterest a lot. So far I post 1 or two times a day, but you can plan ahead on Pinterest and create 30 posts every month that get posted over the entire month.
I also make sure my blogposts are posted in Google My Business because they actually give some traffic.
9. Monetize Your Blog
If you want to monetize your article, there are several options.
You can write articles that deal with or relate to a product. Or you can find a product that fits your article.
You can find products by signing up to places like ShareaSale.com, ClickBank.com, CJ.com or others that offer digital products.
You can sign up to an AdSense account and show ads, but it takes 30,000 visitors a day for it to make money of importance. And maybe advertising also weakens trust in your blog?
You can also sell your own products. Courses, coaching, ebooks, etc.
Under no. 3 you can see how I have used an affiliate link to WebHosting.dk and under no. 4 there is an affiliate link to DIVI. If someone needs to use hosting and buys through that link I get a little money.
The link is only a demonstration because people reading this article are only in the process of deciding the overall lines. Therefore I would be able to sell more by creating another article that is solely about choosing a host and targeting people who are actively looking for a good host.
10. Go To No. 6 And Write Your Next Article
Now it is only a loop from no. 6 to no. 10!
There is not much relaxation in the early days of starting a blog. Managing and developing your own blog is a full-time job and for many people, it is an advantage to be two, or at least to have an accountability partner.
When your blog takes off and you start to make a lot of money, you should consider outsourcing SEO and marketing and maybe some of the writing. That way, you can find time to be creative and to develop the blog to new heights.
Your Blog Is Now Ready For Serving The Internet People
Once you’ve gotten started with your blog, we’ll look at security, caching, and strategy, but that’s another story that we’ll return to later.
If you want more sign up for the 10-day challenge that will help you day by day, step by step to set up your blog. It is FREE and 95% of the tools I present are also FREE!
How to Chose Keywords
Here are all the keywords I considered for this article found with the Google Ads keyword tool. I mainly used the first three. The first two should be easy to rank for and get 5-10 visitors a month. No. 3 should bring in a little more.
10 tips to create a blog – 5 monthly searches – Competition unknown
how 2 create a blog – 50 monthly searches – Competition unknown
to create a blog – 500 monthly searches – Low competition (5 of 100)
I put in a few of these in places where it felt naturally:
creating your own free blog using wordpress steps – 50 monthly searches – Low competition (9 of 100)
creating your own free blog using wordpress – 50 monthly searches – Low competition (19 of 100)
setting up a free blog using wordpress step by step – 500 monthly searches – Low competition (20 of 100) – This is a good one
steps to create a blog in wordpress – 50 monthly searches – Low competition (23 of 100)
wordpress blog creation tutorial – 50 monthly searches – Low competition (24 of 100)
how to make a successful blog – 500 monthly searches – Low competition (32 of 100) – This is a good one
how to make a successful blog and make money – 50 monthly searches – Medium competition (34 of 100)
building a successful blog – 50 monthly searches – Medium competition (38 of 100)
making a successful blog – 500 monthly searches – Medium competition (43 of 100)
how to create a successful blog and make money – 50 monthly searches – Medium competition (51 of 100)
how to be a successful blogger and make money – 50 monthly searches – Medium competition (52 of 100)
how to start a successful blog for free – 50 monthly searches – Medium competition (6134 of 100)
how to have a successful blog and make money – 50 monthly searches – High competition (70 of 100)
how to set up a successful blog – 50 monthly searches – High competition (73 of 100)
I also considered these but the competition was too high so it would be difficult to rank for because the domain Rank of the blog is only 10 at this time. When it rises to 25 I will begin to consider using these keywords in related articles:
blogging tips for beginners – 500 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (23 of 100)
create blog – 50.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (53 of 100)
start blog – 50.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (53 of 100)
how to create a blog – 50.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (50 of 100)
how to make a blog – 50.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (46 of 100)
how to start a blog for free – 5.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (54 of 100)
how to start a blog and make money – 5.000 monthly searches – Avg. Competition (53 of 100)
If you have an old blog with a high Domain Rating – above 50, (use Ahrefs to check) it is much easier to rank for difficult search terms. If your blog is new with a low Domain Rating you need to use low competition search terms.
Nice! The hardest part is the promotion part. Driving traffic is key.
Soooo happy you talk about your keywords. It is quite complicated to know which to use and how.