How To Start A Blog (Some Frequently Asked Questions)

How To Start A Blog (Some Frequently Asked Questions)

How to start a blog?

What shall I do to scale it fastly?

How can I make money blogging?

I have been asked these questions many times. New bloggers have a long list of queries which they want to be answered.

We have compiled answers of all those frequently asked questions over here. Let’s have a look.

 

 

Main image. How to start a blog

 

1- What Is A Blog?

A blog is a regularly updated website, run by an individual or group, primarily consisting of the written text in an informal, conversational style.

If statistics are anything to go by, in the United States alone, 42.23% of people from the ages of 18 to 49 read blogs.

You can find a blog for any topic you want. For bloggers, it’s a great avenue to increase their subscriber base, connect with new people, and make money online.

 

2- Why Should You Start A Blog?

There are so many reasons to start a blog.

One of the most prominent reasons is to influence and inspire online readers. If you have in-depth knowledge in your field of work and have decent writing chops, then you truly can help others.

If you know how to monetize your blog, you can even make a decent passive income.

 

Blogging can provide you with the perfect platform to:

– Develop yourself personally
– Improve your writing
– Build new relationships and network in your field
– Share your knowledge with your audience
– Make a lot of money

 

3- How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog?

When you start a blog, you have the option of using a free or paid blogging platform. Both have their pros and cons.

If you’re a novice and want to try your hand at blogging without paying upfront, WordPress.com and Blogger are excellent free platforms that let you do just that.

However, there are always restrictions with a free tool. For example, you won’t have access to better themes, restriction on advertisements, and more.

On the other hand, if you’re a seasoned campaigner or a novice confident enough about blogging, you could opt for paid platforms.

Website builders like Squarespace and Wix provide excellent paid plans that help you customize your site the way you want without restrictions.

Moreover, such platforms allow you to optimize your site for search engines, add advanced features like an online store, drag-and-drop editors, and more.

 

Here are some of the essential expenses:

– Domain name: It may cost you around $10 per month
– Hosting: Shared hosting cost typically costs $3 – $10 per month. Then there are more advanced options like VPS hosting, dedicated hosting, etc.

– Optional expenses include a premium WordPress theme (costing between $30 – $60), marketing tools, additional plugins, and more.

Final Calculations:
– If you are considering blogging as a hobby, then it should be free.
– If you aren’t that serious and don’t mind minimal features, then it may cost you about $50-$60 per year.
Now, if you’re planning to invest in additional features to scale up your blog, then it may cost over $400 per year.

 

4- How Do I Get Readers To My Blog?

To get readers to your blog, you have to provide value to your readers.

Here are some steps that’ll help get you there:

  • Master SEO – this can’t be understated
  • Create catchy headlines – your headline is the first thing someone reads. Help them figure out the benefits by enumerating them.

The ideal clickable headline is: Odd number + superlative + target keyword + year

  • Publish blog posts consistently as it makes your readers take you more seriously
  • Use call-to-action (CTA) buttons and opt-in forms to make your readers act
  • Offer incentives to current readers like product discounts and insider knowledge
  • Share your posts on social media Implementing all the steps mentioned above can help you get some initial traction to your blog.

5- How Do I Start a Successful Blog?

There are more than 600 million blogs in the US alone. But 95% of them aren’t successful. Many factors set apart successful bloggers from non-successful ones.

Some of the critical factors in starting and running a successful blog are:

  1. Understanding market viability and audience revenue potential
  2. Being well versed in digital marketing – you need to have a firm grasp on SEO, keyword research, affiliate marketing, email marketing strategies, etc.
  3. Being great at self-promotion
  4. Offering value-based content
  5. Providing content consistently
  6. Creating a schedule and sticking to it
  7. Engaging subscribers proactively and solving their pain points

6- Do Bloggers Get Paid?

Yes, they do. Bloggers can get paid exceptionally well. Others make nothing from their blogs.

Breaking it down, bloggers mostly get paid through:
– Advertisements
– Affiliate marketing
– Online courses
– Sponsored posts
– Selling products
– Consulting

However, if your blog posts don’t offer much value, it’s difficult to create an income.

If you’re looking at blogging as a full-time job, it probably won’t make you a millionaire overnight. However, in a year,  your blog can replace your 9 to 5 job.

 

7- How Do Bloggers Get Paid?

Bloggers can get paid via advertisements, affiliate commissions, course or e-commerce sales, and more. The most common metric on how much you get paid in affiliate marketing is EPC (earnings per click).

Another metric is CPM (cost per 1000 impressions). For every 1,000 clicks on the ad, you get paid a fixed amount.

Apart from this, you can also sell products based on your expertise. For example, if you run a travel blog, you could sell brochures on the best tourist destinations. Or if you run a food blog, you could sell e-recipes of your best dishes.

Offer something that is valued by a segment of your audience and bring paid subscriptions to enlist them. The amount could be as low as $5 per month per person. But if you can create the value to attract large volumes, you can start to make a decent income.

 

8- How To Start A Blog For Free In 2020?

Starting a blog doesn’t have to cost much. You can start a blog with minimal investment and sometimes even for free.

When you start a blog, you need to decide whether you want to self-host it or use a fully-hosted platform. Usually, using a fully-hosted platform costs a small monthly fee. But getting a free platform is easy. Most beginners opt for free, self-hosted platforms, such as WordPress.com and Blogger.

Here’s a list of some of the best blogging platforms (both free and paid). If you’re serious about blogging, I recommend you go with a paid option.

When you use a free platform, you’ll have to abide by the platform restrictions and will rarely make money. With almost unlimited revenue potential, you should pay to host your blog.

 

9- How To Start A Blog About Food in 2020?

Food and recipes are one of the most popular things people search for. Since everything is readily available these days, food connoisseurs are willing to try out and experiment with different cuisines and flavours.

Now’s as good a time as any to start your food blog.

Here are some steps to do just that:

– Choose your web hosting company.
– Select a perfect name for your blog that is relevant to your niche.
– Choose the perfect theme for your food blog. The right theme can attract viewers instantly and help you increase your subscriber base.
– Perform keyword research and choose a sub-niche in the food space.
– Start posting and learn how to write recipes in an SEO-friendly manner.
– Get backlinks and guest posts from other food blogs.
– To sustain your blog, you might also want to find out ways to monetize it. Third-party advertisements, affiliate marketing, and selling exclusive recipes are some ways to do that.

 

9- How To Start A Blog About Travel in 2020?

Travelling is something that most people are passionate about. If you are too, you can start your travel blogging journey and make money from your recommendations.

There are a lot of travel affiliate programs that pay when you recommend anything like hotels, Airbnbs, travel gear, travel insurance, booking.com etc.

 

Here’s how to get started now with a travel blog:

 

– The first step is to determine the sub-niche of your blog. There are plenty of options, including solo travelling, luxury travelling, budget travelling, family travel, and more.

– The second step is to decide on a name that’ll be an instant hit with your target audience.
– Set up web hosting.
– Get the perfect theme for your travel blog.
– Perform keyword research and choose a sub-niche in the travel space.
– Publish travel articles based on your expertise, and format them for SEO.
– Obtain backlinks and guest posts from other travel blogs.

 

11- How To Start A Blog About Fashion In 2020?

If you’re interested in the latest styles, starting a fashion blog and tapping into that interest is a great idea.

However, it is a saturated space, which is why you have to make extra efforts to start and grow your fashion blog.

Here’s how you can start your fashion blog:

– Think about what type of fashion you want to talk about in your blog. Fashion can be a broad term, so it’s essential to select a style or niche. For example, do you want to blog about high-fashion or street fashion? Vintage or Gothic?
– Get the perfect domain name that will hit off instantly with the audience.
– Choose your hosting provider.
– Select the theme that best suits your style and the fashion you want to talk about.
– Create content consistently. Never miss out on blogging.
– Promote it heavily, especially on social media platforms like Instagram.
– Since it’s fashion, you want to give it the maximum exposure you can. Monetize it through social media, podcasts, and advertisements. You need all the attention you can get.

 

12- How To Start A Blog About Beauty in 2020?

If you have a passion for beauty products and the latest trends, starting a beauty blog could be for you. This type of blog is best paired with a YouTube channel and Instagram account.

Here’s how you can start a beauty blog:
– Think about what you want to talk about in your beauty blog. Oily vs. dry skin? Fair vs. dark complexion? The list is endless, and it’s up to you to decide your focus area.
– Pick your blog’s name. When it comes to beauty, a catchy, memorable name can attract the right audience.

– Again, choose a hosting plan and install a beauty blog theme.
– Do keyword research on the how-to keywords that people are looking for.
– Schedule your articles and make sure to embed YouTube tutorials into your posts.
– Advertise on social media and via email newsletters.
– You can also provide video tutorials and share beauty tips to increase your subscriber base.

 

14- What Is WordPress?

WordPress is the simplest way to make web pages and makes up over 30% of the Internet.

WordPress helps you create, publish, and share webpages. It’s also one of the most user-friendly platforms to host blogs. And you only have to pay for the domain name and web hosting.

It is a feature-rich CMS (content management system) that allows bloggers to create, edit, and publish content. It features a dashboard where you can edit posts, media, pages, comments, plugins, themes, users, website settings, and more.

 

15- Should I Use WordPress.Com Or WordPress.Org?

WordPress.com and WordPress.org are two very different platforms.

WordPress.com offers an end-to-end solution to start a simple website for free. You need to sign up, and you are all set to build your website.

WordPress.org is an open-source website platform that can be leveraged only through a paid hosting account.

Here are some key differences between the two platforms to help you make a more informed decision:

1. Cost:

WordPress.org: It is entirely free to test but to make the website visible and published, you need to buy website hosting and a domain name.
WordPress.com: You can start a free blog with a WordPress name. To have a custom domain name, you will have to pay at least $4 per month.

2. Setup:

WordPress.org: Setting up a blog or website on WordPress.org requires some level of technical expertise that includes buying hosting and domain name followed by their integration with the website.
WordPress.com: WordPress.com guides the user in a step-by-step process to make the setup hassle-free.

3. Themes:

WordPress.org: It offers excellent customization options through more than 7,500 free themes. Users also get to choose thousands of premium themes.
WordPress.com: It comes with limited customization options. Free and personal plans offer over 150 themes, and other premium plans offer over 200 paid themes.

4. Plugins:

WordPress.org: You get access to more than 55,000 plugins along with thousands of other third-party plugins.
WordPress.com: It allows the installation of plugins in only business or e-commerce plans. These plans cost $25 and $45 per month and offer more than 50,000 plugins.
Now, it’s up to you to decide which platform aligns the best with your requirements.

 

YOU’VE STARTED YOUR FIRST BLOG.

 

As you can see, learning how to start a blog is pretty easy, but you need to consider your options carefully.

Turning your blog into a profitable money-making business requires a smarter approach, SEO mastery, consistency, and hard work.

I have covered pretty much everything you need to know how to start your blog. I will continue to update this post over time with the latest blogging techniques.

Now, it’s your turn. Why not start a blog today?

Start a blog now with Bluehost and get 63% off your hosting plan ($2.95/month).
Try Bluehost

 

P.S: Do you know I could help you grow your blog personally? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special WordPress services to help your set up your website create content and monetize it.

I can put you on the path of financial freedom in 3 short months, only if you are willing to put in work and have a lot of patience.

If you will work with me, I will make sure that your goals and expectations are met in the best possible way. Find out more information here.

 

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy in the footer.

Author’s Bio:

Umama Batool Qazi is a contributing columnist @Socialnomics, blogger @UBQ Digital Marketing, content creator and a Pinterest geek. She helps her clients achieve online success by creating valuable content and planning their Pinterest strategy.

To connect feel free to drop her a message at Twitter @DigitalUbq or email at [email protected]

15 Email Marketing Best Practices (That Actually Drive Results)

15 Email Marketing Best Practices (That Actually Drive Results)

Email marketing isn’t as simple as writing a message and sending it to a list of contacts. There are a lot of email marketing best practices to follow and email marketing industry benchmarks to hit.

We have written a detailed post about how you can build your email list faster.

In this post we have shared some of the top email marketing best practices to be successful this year.

 

main image of email marketing blog blog

 

 15 EMAIL MARKETING BEST PRACTICES 

 

1. NEVER BUY EMAIL LISTS.

It is one of the most important of all email marketing best practices. Email marketing is so effective because people want to engage with your business and receive your message. Buying email lists takes away this trust by spamming their inbox with something they don’t want.

And the penalties for not following these rules are severe. According to Keap (formerly Infusionsoft), you can be fined up to $16,000 per incorrect email under the CAN-SPAM Act.

The health of your email campaigns depends on a healthy open rate. If you are interacting with a purchased list, you’re bound to have super-low open rates, spam complaints, and can even be blacklisted.

With the recent General Data Protection Guarantee (GDPR) roll out, it bears repeating – never purchase email lists. You should also clean your email list regularly to ensure your contacts are up to date.

 

2. PERSONALIZE EVERYTHING (INCLUDING THE SENDER’S NAME) 

An email titled, “Dear {first name}” is much more personal than “Dear Member.” Any piece of data that you collect from your email subscribers should be used to personalize the content they receive.

If the item fits in a column within a CSV file next to their email address, a merge tag can fire. A merge tag is a piece of ESP-specific code that allows you to place unique pieces of user data from your email list into your emails.

First and last names are the most popular merge tags at an email marketer’s disposal. Plus, you can use other cards like company name, date of the previous visit, the number of emails opened, products purchased, or information from a survey.

Using merge tags in your initial greeting is a great place to start making your email more personal.

See what this infographic from Get Response has to say about personalization. 

 

infographic about email personalization

 

3. WRITE COMPELLING SUBJECT LINES.

 

Email subject lines should be concise, compelling, and create a sense of urgency while providing enough information, so the user knows what they’re opening. Sound confusing? Don’t worry – it isn’t.

Subject lines should be between 30 and 50 characters (many email providers cut off subject lines more extended than that). They should cut through the noise and entice users to act. The use of numbers and symbols, well-thought-out emojis, and exciting offers and discounts will increase your open rates. 

 

4. USE A WELCOME EMAIL SERIES FOR NEW SUBSCRIBERS. 

 

Email automation is a powerful tool most often used in a series of emails that welcome new subscribers into the list. These free autoresponder emails send automatically when new users opt-in to your list.

You can time these emails so that your subscribers get them on day one, day three, day five, or even day ten. Only you know the correct cadence for these emails based on your business goals.

For example, an e-commerce website may offer a 10% discount on the first welcome email. For emails 2 and 3, they can further showcase their brand story, product catalogue, and social media accounts. A welcome email series is great because it runs on autopilot, engages your list, and nurtures prospects into customers.

An email autoresponder is very helpful in email automation. After creating an email series you can easily set up an autoresponder with Get Response.

Give the infographic below a thorough read to learn what is an autoresponder and how it can help you in list building.

 

Get response infographic about email autoresponder

 

 

5. FORMAT YOUR EMAILS PROPERLY. 

 

Emails should be between 500 and 600 pixels wide – any wider than that and users may have to scroll horizontally on their mobile devices.

Never make your “from” email address a “no-reply” email, like [email protected] Make it a name your subscribers will instantly recognize.

Place your main marketing message and call to action (CTA) above-the-fold so that most of your users will see it right away.

In your email content and imagery, stick to three fonts or less, and make sure the design matches the look and feel of your brand. Finally, put your logo at the top of the email so that subscribers recognize your brand at first glance.

 

6. USE AN EMAIL SIGNATURE 

 

A signature is a perfect opportunity to brand every message you send. It establishes and reinforces who you are as a company. By creating a cohesive email signature for each employee on your team, you create brand recognition in every person to whom your employees send emails. 

 

7- SEND TO YOURSELF FIRST 

 

Your subscribers have lots of options when it comes to reading your emails. Different browsers, mobile devices, email services.

Previewing and testing the functionality of your emails is vital to make sure that your emails are showing up and working as expected.

Trust us, you don’t want to send out an email with several calls to action with links that don’t actually work.

While your email marketing service probably has a preview mode where you can check out what your email looks like on desktop vs. mobile, you really should take the extra step of sending yourself a test email.

That way, you can see exactly what your email will look like on your desktop and mobile device. 

 

8- USE A DOUBLE OPTIN

 

Whenever we talk about good email practices, we always say email list quality beats quantity.

When you compare the average email marketing results by industry with the use of double opt-in by industry data, you can see a link.

Industries that use confirmed opt-in more often usually outperform those who don’t.

The same goes for places with stricter laws, like Germany or Europe in general.

They outperform the locations where marketers don’t have to pay the same amount of attention to who joins their email list – and how.

This article outlines why it’s worth using double opt-in. Why not give it a go?

At the very least, it will positively affect your deliverability – which is still a big win. 

 

9- SCHEDULE YOUR EMAILS SMARTLY 

 

According to Coschedule, the best day of the week is Tuesday and the best timings are 9 to 11 am.

Other researches have suggested that the best timings are 9 to 11 am and 3 to 5 pm. As long as you are staying away from weekends your engagement should be fine.

coschedule info graphic: best time to email

 

 

10- ENCOURAGE SHARING

 

If the email content is valuable for the masses, ask the recipient to share it with friends and family.

 

11- MAKE IT EASY TO UNSUBSCRIBE

 

Yes, making easy to unsubscribe is not optional, it is a legal obligation.

Don’t take the unsubscribes personally. You do not want subscribers who do not want to open and click on your emails.

That affects your email deliverability.

 

12- CLEAN YOUR LIST ON A REGULAR BASIS

 

Every year, your email list declines by 20–30%. This means that you’re sending emails to tons of subscribers who will never open or engage with them.

And that impacts your email deliverability.

Fortunately, you can clean your email list and cut the dead weight pretty easily.

Many email marketing services even have a list cleanup tool that you can just update settings and run.

We recommend starting with your most active email lists since these are the lists driving conversions, leads, and sales. Eventually, though, you’ll want to scrub all of your lists.

 

13- TRACK THE RIGHT METRICS

 

What do you want to achieve with your email marketing campaigns?

Is it more opens or conversions?

How about more revenue per email sent?

You need to set the right objectives.

And if you’re reading these email campaigns best practices to improve your results – you should look at the right email KPIs.

Which ones?

It depends on your goal.

The email open rate is often considered a vanity metric. The click-through rate is more actionable, but it still doesn’t tell you how much revenue your campaigns generate.

So it’s best to learn about all the key email marketing metrics and how to choose them to suit your objectives.

  

14-HUMANIZE YOUR EMAIL CONTENT

  

If you want readers to stick around, you need to sound like a real person.

But that’s not all. You need to write to them as though they’re real people, too.

That means no jargon, no marketing speak. Just one person talking to another person.

Yes, you need to write to a single person. Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean individual emails to every person on your email list.

But you should make them feel that way.

  

15- CREATE AN EPIC EMAIL COPY

  

What you write about, and how you write it, is just as important for open rates as your subject line. If your subscribers enjoy your content, they’re more likely to open your emails in the future.

But, if subscribers don’t like your content, they’re going to stop opening your emails no matter how great your subject line is… And they’ll probably even unsubscribe.

Watch the video below to master the art of email copywriting. 

 

LET’S WRAP IT UP

That the end of our article. If you follow all of the above email marketing best practices, you should start to notice a surge in email subscribers. And the best part? With this particular system, your subscribers will be coming in on autopilot, meaning you don’t have to constantly be promoting your list and you don’t have to pay for ads.

Certainly, there are other things you can do to be more promotional about growing your list or to spend money acquiring subscribers — totally great, too! — but there’s a lot you can accomplish with the strategies above, especially if you’re busy or just getting started.

In case you have found our article helpful, don’t forget to leave a comment. Your reviews are valuable to us.

Read more about growing your email list fastly over here.

We love Get Response. Its the best email marketing automation

tool out there. Click on the link below to start your 30-day FREE trial (no credit card is required ) with super helpful customer support.


P.S: Do you know I could help you grow your blog personally? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special WordPress services to help your set up your website create content and monetize it.

I can put you on the path of financial freedom in 3 short months, only if you are willing to put in work and have a lot of patience.

If you will work with me, I will make sure that your goals and expectations are met in the best possible way. Find out more information here.

 

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy in the footer.

Author’s Bio:

Umama Batool Qazi is a contributing columnist @Socialnomics, blogger @UBQ Digital Marketing, content creator and a Pinterest geek. She helps her clients achieve online success by creating valuable content and planning their Pinterest strategy.

To connect feel free to drop her a message at Twitter @DigitalUbq or email at [email protected]

How To Write Your First Blog Post (That People Would Love To Read)

How To Write Your First Blog Post (That People Would Love To Read)

How to write your first blog post is one of the first questions that comes to the mind of any blogger after completing the blog framework.

Yes! it’s time to create your content. 

main image: how to write first blog post

 

 What Is A Blog Post?

A blog post is the main form of content that is essential for any blog.

The first Site Guide defines a blog post as

The blog post is an entry (article) that you write on a blog. It can include content in the form of text, photos, infographics, or videos.

Value Of Keyword Research In Blog Writing.

 If you have missed our blog post about how to perform keyword research for your blog. You can do so here. We have covered everything about keyword research and SEO in this article.

Each blog post should focus on one main target keyword.

The target keyword should be included in:

  • The blog’s permanent URL.
  • The title of your post.
  • In the first paragraph.
  • In your H2 headings.
  • Within the content, 5-8 times, depending on the post’s length.
  • In your meta description.

Once you have a list of the top 5-10 keywords (topics) you want to cover, it’s a good idea to start writing.

Also, in addition to text, blog posts that have audio, video, photos, and other types of visual content, along with textual content, perform the best.

According to statistics, global internet traffic from videos will make up 82% of all consumer internet traffic by 2021.

 

Important Tips On Content Writing.

 

Before you start typing, here are a few more rules to keep in mind when writing a blog post, which will hopefully make the reader’s experience more enjoyable.

  • Always Provide Value to your readers. Write with a clear beginning, middle, and end structure. Even the most mundane of topics can be made interesting if you understand story arcs and hero’s journeys.
  • Present your blog content attractively and make it easily accessible to the readers. Make sure both textual and visual content in the blog are high-quality. Graphics and images also break up a page and encourage the readers to scroll down.
  • Never make your content commercially focused as it irritates readers. Blogs loaded with too much advertising looks unattractive to most people.
  • Format your headings correctly with H2 and H3 tags, and use bulleted lists and images to break up long lines of text. No paragraph should be longer than three sentences.
  • Double-check for typos and grammatical errors – Grammarly is the best tool out there for this. Grammatical errors can make you look unprofessional in both your reader’s eyes – and in Google’s eyes.

Can You Ask Someone Else To Write Posts For You?

Absolutely YES. 

People think that it is unethical. As far as you are paying the writer well, it is completely fine.

You can find many freelancers at Fiverr, Upwork and Problogger who can write content for you. You have to choose and vet out a writer by your self.

Or outsource this task to full-service content creation companies. These companies have screened pools of writers and will connect you with the right individual.

You can find all of your answers in our detailed post about top content writing services. We have covered over 25 content writing companies, their packages, turnaround times and contact details.

Also, you will learn how to test and vet out the right freelancer for your blog.

Read the post here.

 

Write Your First Blog Post.

Here’s how to write your first blog post on WordPress:

Click on “Posts” in the left sidebar from your WordPress dashboard.
Now, select the “Add New” button:

How to add a new post on WordPress

Next, you will head to the editor, where you can start writing your first blog post.

Add new post word press screenshot
While crafting your blog post, make sure to keep the above tips in mind.

The WordPress Editor works a lot like Microsoft Word and lets you do the following:

  • Align text left, centre, and right.
  • Make text bold or italic.
  • Highlight text and add links to them. You should also go to your link settings and make any external links open in a new tab – that will keep readers on your blog.
  • Add and align images. On most blogs, images should be JPEGs no longer than 800 pixels wide. Any wider and your image file size will slow down your loading times.
  • Add categories and tags to posts.
  • When you click Save Draft, your blog post will be saved, but not yet published.
  • When you click Publish, your blog post will officially be published and appear on your blog archive page.

Make sure to download and install the Yoast SEO plugin too. This allows you to punch in your target keyword and get recommendations on what to do for SEO.

In Yoast, there are four important sections to add:

  • SEO Title
  • Slug
  • Meta Description
  • Focus Keyword

Yoast SEO will help you access real-time feedback on how your blog post might perform in terms of organic traffic for a particular keyword.

Try to achieve as many green signals as possible. Once you hit 80% green light, it means you’re good to go, and your blog is likely to perform better when it comes to SEO.

You can even “Preview” your blog before publishing it.
If you are happy with the way your blog post has turned out, then go ahead and publish it.

You created your first blog post! Or did you?

When you’re ready, go ahead and get started with Bluehost. Use my link below and get started for just $2.95/month (63% off your hosting plan)

Try Bluehost

How To Get People To Read Your Blog?

Now that your post is live, it’s time to tell everyone about it!

  • Share your link on all your social media channels. I recommend opening accounts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram – YouTube if you are making videos – and Pinterest using your blog’s name and logo. The sooner the better, since you want to get as many eyes on your post as possible.
  • Submit your blog’s URL to Google and Bing. This is to ensure that your post gets listed on their search pages. Now don’t freak out if it doesn’t happen right away. Getting a post indexed, especially in the beginning, can take months.
  • Ask your friends and family to help. Whether you’re asking them to share your post on their Facebook page – or tell their coworkers about it, your friends and family are there to support you. This isn’t the time to be shy! So don’t be afraid to ask. Let the whole world know you have published an amazing post!
  • Use Tailwind to share your post on Pinterest. About a third of my traffic comes from Pinterest. Most bloggers will tell you the same thing and this is why: Pinterest is the third-largest search engine on the web next to Google and YouTube!

Sharing Your Blog Through Pinterest.

The best part about Pinterest is you don’t need to have thousands of followers to get loads of traffic. There are plenty of Pinterest users with less than 5,000 followers who make a living either selling products, or from the traffic, they get from their pins.

And this is why:

  • A pin is 100 times more spreadable than a tweet or a Facebook share.
  • Traffic never completely stops coming in, because your images are constantly being shared. Compare this to the shelf life of a tweet (25 minutes) and a Facebook post (less than 2 hours) and it’s easy to see why everyone should consider adding Pinterest to their marketing campaign.

But in order to get a good flow of traffic, you must be pinning consistently. Since this can take hours to accomplish, I recommend using Tailwind.

 

Why I Love Tailwind?

 

Tailwind is a Pinterest marketing tool that schedules pins to go out at certain times during the day so you can get traffic all around the clock. It can also schedule pins weeks ahead of time, freeing you up from having to be physically active on Pinterest every day.

Tailwind also analyzes your board’s performance and gives you the most optimal times to pin (to get more clicks and shares).

Most bloggers (including myself) use this tool because it’s a time saver and is very easy to set up.

 

Let’s Wrap It  Up.

 

Well, that’s it for How to Write Your First Blog Post (and Get People to Read It). If you have any questions or would like to share your own helpful tips, leave a comment at the bottom or send me an email through the contact page.

You don’t need a lot of money to start blogging, there are plenty of affordable options such as Bluehost, which offers hosting and a free domain name for as little as $2.95/month

(This offer is only available to readers of my blog, the discount is automatically applied through the link).

You can check out this post I’ve written about setting up a WordPress blog for more information.

P.S: Do you know I could help you grow your blog personally? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special WordPress services to help your set up your website, create content and monetize it.

I can put you on the path of financial freedom in 3 short months, only if you are willing to put in work and have a lot of patience.

If you will work with me, I will make sure that your goals and expectations are met in the best possible way. Find out more information here.

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy in the footer.

Author’s Bio:

Umama Batool Qazi is a contributing columnist @Socialnomics, blogger @UBQ Digital Marketing, content creator and a Pinterest geek. She helps her clients achieve online success by creating valuable content and planning their Pinterest strategy.

To connect feel free to drop her a message at Twitter @DigitalUbq or email at [email protected]

How To Do Keyword Research For Your Next Blog Post

How To Do Keyword Research For Your Next Blog Post

Keyword research is a vital step when you are thinking about how to start a blog and thinking about the niche.

It helps you discover words users enter into search engines to find content, products, and services in your niche.

You can then use those words and phrases into your blog posts and website content to get more search traffic. 

 

main image how to do keyword research

Why Is Keyword Research Necessary?

 

Many beginners assume that they have a clear idea of what their users are looking for. However, you don’t need to make educated guesses when there are powerful tools available that can help you make data-driven decisions.

People search Google 63,000 times every second. That’s 3.8 million searches per minute, 228 million searches per hour, and 5.6 billion searches per day. Plus, organic traffic can be more valuable than social media traffic because people make high-intent searches online. There are plenty of opportunities out there – you just have to know how to find them.

Properly using keyword research as a part of your content strategy can help you achieve the following:

  • Find the popular keywords your users are looking for.
  • Find content ideas that are easy to rank for and have decent search volume.
  • Find out what your competitors are doing and then beat them to it with a better content strategy.
  • Get more search traffic and grow your audience with each new article.

What Are Some Best Keyword Research Tools?

A piece of good news is that there are SEO tools to understand all of this search data.

Some best keyword research tools are as follows:

1- SEM Rush

2- Ahrefs

3- Moz Keyword Explorer

4- Google Keyword Planner

5- SpyFu

With tools like SEMRush and Ahrefs, you can view individual keyword metrics, including: 

  • Monthly search volume: how many times a keyword is searched for in a given month
  • Keyword difficulty: on a scale from 0 to 100, how difficult is it to rank for that keyword based on the competition
  • The average cost per click (CPC): this is how much the keyword is worth if you were to create a PPC ad for it and pay for the click. It’s a good indicator of the keyword’s value.

What Do You Look For Through A Keyword Research Tool?

 

  • What are people exactly searching about on search engines?
  • What terms they are using?
  • How many times that word has been searched per month?
  • What is the competition level/ difficulty score of that keyword?
  • What blogs/ websites are already ranking for that keyword?
  • What are their domain authorities?

You want to find keywords with high volume and low competition. 

Here’s how I rate these competitive metrics. 

Monthly Search Volume:

  • 0-1,000: Low
  • 1,000-5,000: Low/Medium
  • 5,000-20,000: Medium
  • 20,000-100,000: High
  • 100,000+: Very High

Keyword Difficulty:

  • 0-20: Low
  • 21-50: Medium
  • 51-75: High
  • 76+: Very High

What Are The Types Of Keywords?

 

On my site, there are two main types of keywords I target when it comes to SEO:

First are super high-volume/high competition and medium volume, low competition. Such words are called Revenue Drivers.

How to find this type of keyword for your blog?

Use a tool like Ahrefs and filter the results. Set the monthly search volume filter to a minimum of 1,000 and the keyword difficulty filter to a maximum of 10.

What these keywords are good for?

These keywords should make up the bulk of your posts and be the main revenue-drivers for your blog. The key is to find a good amount of long-tail keywords with medium volume and low competition in your niche.

If these keywords are preceded by terms like “how to” and “best,” you’re well on your way to finding a profitable niche and solving a pain point.

The second types of keywords that I target are super high-volume terms that aren’t as easy to monetize but can bring in a lot of traffic.

How to find this type of keyword for your blog?

Use a tool like Ahrefs and filter the results. Set the monthly search volume filter to a minimum of 20,000 and the Keyword Difficulty filter to a maximum of 75. 

What these keywords are good for?

These keywords should make up 5-10 pillar blog posts that you put a lot of time and effort into. While these high volume keywords won’t generate immediate revenue, they bring in a ton of traffic to your blog and can increase the size of your email list. 

How Do I Track The Performance Of My Keyword Research?

 

First, you need to sign up for Google Search Console. It provides you insights into how Google views your website. You will also be able to see keywords you rank for, and average position in search results.

Google Search Console: UBQ Digital Marketing

 

You will also need Google Analytics to track the performance of your content.

 

Let’s Wrap it up:

A blog needs a mix of both super high-volume/high competition and medium volume, low competition keywords.

We hope this article helped you learn how to do keyword research for your WordPress blog.

You may also want to see our step by step guide on how to start a blog for beginners.

Now, it’s your turn. Why not start a blog today?

Start a blog now with Bluehost and get 63% off your hosting plan ($2.95/month).
Try Bluehost.

 

P.S: Do you know I could help you grow your blog personally? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special WordPress services to help your set up your website, create content and monetize it.

I can put you on the path of financial freedom in 3 short months, only if you are willing to put in work and have a lot of patience.

If you will work with me, I will make sure that your goals and expectations are met in the best possible way. Find out more information here.

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy in the footer.

Author’s Bio:

Umama Batool Qazi is a contributing columnist @Socialnomics, blogger @UBQ Digital Marketing, content creator and a Pinterest geek. She helps her clients achieve online success by creating valuable content and planning their Pinterest strategy.

To connect feel free to drop her a message at Twitter @DigitalUbq or email at [email protected]

 

Best Word Press Plugins For Your Site (Most Are Free)

Best Word Press Plugins For Your Site (Most Are Free)

Are you looking for the best WordPress plugins to take your business to the next level in 2020?

There are over 55,000+ WordPress plugins that you can choose from. This makes it extremely overwhelming for new users to find the right plugin for their website.

We are often asked by readers for the best WordPress plugin suggestions for SEO, social media, backups, speed, etc.

Having the right set of WordPress plugins and tools can help you grow your online business.

In this article, we have shared our expert pick of the must-have WordPress plugins for blogs in 2020.

 

featured image: best wordpress plugins

 

Since WordPress is open-source, you can customize your site in an endless amount of ways.

And this starts with WordPress plugins.

Plugins are a set of tools that integrate with your website and extend its functionality and feature set.

WordPress offers thousands of plugins with different functions, including everything from email marketing and calendar integration to opt-in forms and SEO tools.

However, it’s not recommended to install hundreds of plugins on your blog as they tend to slow down your site and can conflict with each other during updates. So what plugins should bloggers use?

Below is the list of plugins which I use for my blog.

1) ELEMENTOR PRO

 

Elementor Pro is the best WordPress WYSIWYG landing page builder, and it’s the tool I used to create my home page and a few other pages. They have a free version of Elementor, but the Pro version takes it to the next level with much better templates. I have built this blog using a free version.

You can get started with the paid version of Elementor Pro for just $49/year.

 

2) MONSTER INSIGHTS

Monster Insights is the best way to install Google Analytics. With a click of a button, you can see all your important Google Analytics stats right on your WordPress dashboard, so you can make data-driven decisions to grow your traffic and sales.

 

3) MASH SHARE

Mash share is social media share buttons. It’s a free Social Media Plugin, for social media sharing and optimization of your valuable content.

 

4) INSTALL HEADER AND FOOTER

Sometimes you are asked to add codes in header or footer section of your website, for example, Facebook pixel, Pinterest codes to claim your website, Bing etc.

In such cases, Insert Header and Footer plugin allow inserting custom codes inside the head tag and above body tag.

It supports custom HTML, JavaScript and CSS code. This plugin uses the latest WordPress code editor so you can past or type bugs free custom code.

No need to edit theme files for custom code.

 

5) ASSET CLEANUP: PAGE SPEED BOOSTER

This plugin allows you to remove certain elements of code that aren’t necessary to load on every page.

For example, my e-commerce HTML and CSS files were loading on every blog post even though I only needed them on two pages.

With this tool, you can easily select which pieces of code to keep and which to remove based on pages, posts, and other types of content.

 

6) BIGCOMMERCE FOR WORDPRESS

This is the e-commerce tool that I use to sell my digital products. I tested WooCommerce first, but it installed four plugins, slowed down my site, and had an ugly checkout experience.

BigCommerce for WordPress launched in December 2018 and runs via an API – so you handle all of your content in WordPress and your backend e-commerce in BigCommerce. 

7) CLASSIC EDITOR

I’m not a huge fan of the new Gutenberg editor and find the Classic Editor much easier to use and more error-free.

8) EASY TABLE OF CONTENTS

This plugin allows you to easily add a Table of Contents into any page or post. The plugin will appear underneath your pages/posts, and you can select if every H2, H3, or any other header should be automatically added to the Table of Contents.

Tables of Contents are important for a few reasons: they keep users engaged with the page (by clicking around) and help with user experience.

I often have a Table of Contents at the top of my new posts going to each section, then a “Back to Top” link at the bottom of each section so that users can easily go back to the Table of Contents. 

9) EXTENDED WIDGET OPTIONS

Widgets are areas on your WordPress site that aren’t directly pages or posts. For example, sidebars, footers, and homepage sections can be considered widgets. Extended Widget Options allows you to expand the functionality of your widgets to make them more useful.

For example, I use this tool to make some of my sidebar banners sticky so that they scroll down the page with the reader. 

10) GDPR COOKIE CONSENT

This is a plugin that can make you GDPR compliant and make sure that you provide a popup highlighting how you use cookies to readers in the EU. 

11) MAMMOTH.DOCX CONVERTER

I use this plugin to convert Google Docs into WordPress posts automatically. Since I get a lot of my initial first drafts written for me, I download them as a .docx file and insert them into my posts/pages with this plugin.

The Mammoth .docx Converter will appear underneath your posts/pages, and it’s as simple as uploading your file and clicking “Insert into Editor.”

One small detail is that you’ll want to make sure your document’s images have both names and alt text before uploading into WordPress. 

12) OPTIN MONSTER

OptinMonster is hands down the best email opt-in plugin on the market. With the ability to create exit intent, modal popups, in-content opt-ins, and more, they are the reason that my email list is growing by about 60-75 users/day.

You can get started with OptinMonster for just $19/month.

 

13) SHORTPIXEL IMAGE OPTIMIZER

ShortPixel compresses all of your images so that they are smaller files and your pages load faster. I’ve tested lots of different image compression plugins, and ShortPixel has been the best.

 

14) THIRSTY AFFILIATES

This is one of my favourite affiliate marketing plugins. ThirstyAffiliates takes your random affiliate links (full of random numbers, letter strings, etc.) and cleans them up so that they look nice. For example, which one looks nicer:

A: https://www.leadpages.pxf.io/0aOVE
B: https://www.ubqdigitalmarketing.com/recommends/leadpages

The second one is more clickable, leads to higher conversion rates, and can’t be stolen by malicious hackers.

15) WP LAST MODIFIED INFO

One factor in search engine rankings is recency of content – especially if you’re in niches with new information coming out. This plugin allows you to easily show the date on every page/post so that search engines understand when it was last modified. For example, with WordPress, it’s easy to show a date, but it will typically show the Publish Date, not the last time you edited it.

By giving search engines an easy way to pull the Modified Date, you will see this date appear in your search results, and may see a rankings boost.

 

16) WP ROCKET

WP Rocket is an all-in-one site speed plugin that can do everything from minifying HMTL, CSS, and JavaScript, integrate with your CDN, reduce database bloat, and more. I’ve tried other speed plugins like Autoptimize and had some issues with it. WP Rocket is the best, in my opinion.

You can get started with WP Rocket for $49/year.

 

17) YOAST SEO

Yoast SEO doesn’t need an introduction. If you’re not using it, then you’re missing out on a lot of great free features. I use Yoast to manage my sitemap, robots.txt, page titles/meta descriptions, and other add-ons.

 

Let’s Wrap It Up:

 

These were the best WordPress plugins that every website needs in my view. As stated above, these plugins provide the basic features, improve the site SEO, optimize speed, harden security and help to market your content and products in a better way.

Did I miss any plugin that you think is essential too? I would appreciate if you suggest me any.

 

Now, it’s your turn. Why not start a blog today?
Start a blog now with Bluehost and get 63% off your hosting plan ($2.95/month).
Try Bluehost.

 

P.S: Do you know I could help you grow your blog personally? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special WordPress services to help your set up your website create content and monetize it.

I can put you on the path of financial freedom in 3 short months, only if you are willing to put in work and have a lot of patience.

If you will work with me, I will make sure that your goals and expectations are met in the best possible way. Find out more information here.

 

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy in the footer.

Author’s Bio:

Umama Batool Qazi is a contributing columnist @Socialnomics, blogger @UBQ Digital Marketing, content creator and a Pinterest geek. She helps her clients achieve online success by creating valuable content and planning their Pinterest growth strategy.

To connect feel free to drop her a message at Twitter @DigitalUbq or email at [email protected]