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*clicks the LAUNCH button*
And done with my blog!
Lol. Just kidding.
I may have left out a few steps, but before I get to them it would be best to get some perspective on what made me finally launch my blog.
A few short months ago….actually….holy crap….it’s been a year since I first thought about blogging.
Back then I was thinking about blogging just to share my love of travel while I was pregnant with my son.
I figured at some point I would finally begin to actually write a post before I was supposed to report back to work (yea, I literally just thought about blogging and looking at how to blog posts for 9 months lol).
And at first, I was totally prepared to take the standard American maternity leave of only 6 weeks (shitty I know), then send my son off to a caretaker Monday- Friday.
However, after I finally gave birth, I began to realize that I wanted to leave my job and stay home to raise my son.
The idea of not being able to watch my son go through his milestones when they first happened made me sad.
Not to mention a large percentage of my paycheck would be going to daycare expenses alone!
At this point, my husband recognized that I was feeling a little depressed about going back to work and having to send our son off to daycare and told me he would look at our finances to see if there was a way we could get by without me having to work.
He got back to me a few hours later and said that thanks to our debt freedom journey we had been kicking ass on, we could easily get by on his paycheck alone but I would need to get my blog going to help get us back on track with our debt freedom journey!
Back to the story….
So I got super overwhelmed with joy and fear at the same time
You’re probably thinking, “why the heck would she be fearful about this decision?”
Well…..now my thoughts of blogging actually needed to turn into actions.
And I needed to learn how to monetize my blog!
I was hesitant like most people are, but I decided not to let my fear of possibly sucking at this hold me back from the possibility of actually being good at this.
How to Start a Blog and Monetize it
I know I know, sounds cliche…start a blog make money. But stop and think…there is a reason why so many write about this topic and why there are millions on pins on it.
You honestly can make money from blogging.
The trick is, you have to be willing to actually work for it. No, you don’t have to be super popular on Instagram or be super outgoing. You just have to want it and write with purpose. Also, you have to be willing to learn from those who have become successful from it.
Here are the steps it takes to turn your writing ideas into a full blog site.
Step 1: Figure out what you want to write about
Most if not all bloggers call this process “finding your niche”. What topic or topics do you really enjoy and be able to write at least 1 post a week on?
For me, I LOVE traveling and being outdoors, but I also wanted to be able to write about other things people and myself go through in daily living (cooking, parenting, and other adulting topics lol).
So I focus on 3 areas. This may work for you or it may not. A lot of bloggers will take one category and stick with it. The may write about all sorts of things within that one niche.
The general niche of parenting opens doors to all sorts of writing topics, which allows you to create more content. More content means more traffic. More traffic potentially means more money.
Step 2: Your Blog Needs a Web Host
If you want to make money at all with your blog, you want to avoid using free blogging sites.
It will be next to impossible to sign up for affiliate programs or ad networks (these are your money makers).
Having your site hosted comes with some added security guarantees that you would not get from free sites.
What is hosting anyway?
It’s pretty much a landlord and you are renting a slot on the internet. This way you can work with companies you love and trust without risking losing your site (This has happened to many bloggers who initially started on free site like Blogger, they were kicked off without advance notice).
So how do you get a host or who do you host with?
My recommendation? Bluehost.
First, it was highly recommended by the various bloggers I read articles from.
Second, they really are a great company and when you use their hosting you get free SSL for your site.
Site security is extremely important to have, it helps with attracting readers because they know they are on a trusted secured site.
As a beginning blogger, what I really liked about Bluehost was their customer service and easy setup. I was able to get hosting and set up my blog foundation within 20 minutes.
If you ever have a question about anything their 24/7 online chat team is super nice and helpful!
You might say, well I want to start a blog, but I really am on a tight budget. Trust me, I know how you feel. I had just quit my job!
My husband, being the wise financial guy, said all good businesses have to invest a little in order to make a return.
The return on investment for using a host, like Bluehost, can be significant!
(full disclosure, by clicking one of my referral links for Bluehost and make a purchase, I do receive a commission at no extra cost to you. I would not recommend any product I honestly don’t love)
If you want a step by step guide on signing up with Bluehost, I put together a post just for that! Click here to read it!
Step 3: Choosing Your Look
In the blog world, it’s really called picking a theme. And there are hundreds of themes out there! Some free, some not!
But the bottom line is, with a variety of choices, it gives you the chance to really make your blog site uniquely yours.
Once you sign up with Bluehost, they install WordPress for you in one click! (WordPress.org is a blog platform in which you create your site, from pages to actual posts)
Whether you start out with a free one or paid theme, just make sure it looks neat and is easy on the eyes. The better your site looks, the more traffic you will attract. (consider most people read blogs through their phones, so make sure your theme is mobile friendly)
So you have web hosting and you have your theme, so what’s next?
The obvious answer would be to start writing content and building traffic to your site! Seems simple enough right?
Well, after playing around with different themes and reading different articles to teach myself, I realized I needed help lol.
I knew that I obviously needed to start writing content, but how? How do I create a post? What is a widget? What exactly is a plugin or which ones should I use for my site?
If I tried to do this all on my own, it was going to take much longer to get my blog up and running. Not to mention, I didn’t have the first clue about how to actually use WordPress and I didn’t even know what to even search on google or youtube.
Enter Alex & Lauren from Create & Go
I came across Create & Go through Pinterest because that’s the go-to search engine for a lot of things these days.
Of all the bloggers out there, I really liked the story behind Create & Go. Alex and Lauren were tired of the 9-5 rat race, so they saved money for a few months cushion, quit their jobs and became full-time bloggers. Within 3 years they were pulling in $100,000/month.
No, I did not add an extra zero, you read that right.
Now I found that extremely inspiring because I quit my job to raise a child and wanted to make just enough money to support that.
I wasn’t looking to make $100,000/month necessarily. I just wanted to make enough to equal what I made each month as a teacher.
I read more articles they had written about starting a blog and I really liked what they had to say and how easy they laid it out. So then I went to their Youtube channel and watched a few videos.
They created different courses to help bloggers from beginning to the next level which is monetizing. The first course for beginners is called “Launch Your Blog Biz”.
After reading reviews and testimonials, I decided to trust my gut about them and build my blog using their course “ Launch Your Blog Biz”.
I can not tell you enough how happy I am that I used this course! They walked me through start to finish (or launch) of my blog. They not only have downloadable steps but videos!
The Build and Launch Your Blog course is designed to get you launched within a month. Which is really awesome and keeps you accountable.
BUT! If you can’t quite make that timeline, no worries, the course is viewable for life once purchased. I was past the month “launch day” by 3 weeks because taming a wild baby boy is no easy task!
You can go as fast or as slow as you want. You can re-watch tutorials on particular aspects of WordPress or content writing. And yes I learned all about widgets and plugins.
In fact, I learned so much from them, I feel almost like a professional website builder just I do not need to know how to code. #winning
The Launch and Results So Far
After completing the course and launching my blog (website), I am very happy with my results so far. I have learned how to start my blog and start monetizing it.
Seriously! I would have never gotten to this point within such a short amount of time if it wasn’t for this course. The cost is minimal compared to all the knowledge and tools I received from it.
I made great connections by networking with other bloggers in the course’s closed Facebook group. It’s great because someone is always there to help answer questions or give feedback on how you are doing.
My confidence about my blogging journey has really gone up since. I have joined several other blogging groups on Facebook and Pinterest. We share and give advice which in turn has made me improve on my writing as well as developing a schedule at home to be more productive in general.
Making serious money won’t happen overnight. But in the grand scheme of things, the little amount today can double or triple within a few years. Who knows maybe I can retire my husband from his job.
I am definitely willing to work towards that!
So what do you say? Are you ready to start something that can help you be on your way to feeding that creative side of you or make money to quit your 9-5?
Click the image or link below to purchase the course and take ownership of your passions and your time!