15 Best Blogging Platforms & Sites 2020 – Both Free and Paid

15 Best Blogging Platforms & Sites 2020 – Both Free and Paid

Before getting to know what are some best blogging platforms and sites, it is important to understand the need for blogging. There are many good reasons to create a blog.

You may want to practice your writing, create a following, establish your brand or use blogging as a marketing tool to increase site traffic. It’s also a great way to connect with like-minded people.

How do you choose the site to build your blog on?

There’s a wide choice of blogging platforms. The more choices there are, the harder it is to make up your mind.

To help you choose the best blogging platform for yourself, we will first talk about what to look for in a blogging solution. After that, we’ll examine the pros and cons of the 15 best blog sites.

Ready? Let’s get started…

 

Main image for the blog

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST BLOGGING PLATFORM OR WEBSITE?

 

For making a decision, it helps to know what you are looking for. As they say – if you don’t know where you are going, every way is the right way. Below are some categories to judge the candidates by:

 

  • COSTS – An indispensable consideration. It’s not only important that your blogging platform of choice fits within your budget but what you also get for your money. A free offer is worth nothing if it doesn’t do what you need.
  • BEGINNER- FRIENDLINESS– Beginners need a blogging solution that is easy to set up, manage, and doesn’t need coding skills to run. They also have to be able to find support when they run into trouble.
  • FEATURES AND EXTENDABILITY– Over time, your needs and requirements for your site will change. You might want to modify or overhaul the design, add features, or make other drastic changes. A good blogging platform needs to be able to accommodate that.
  • MAINTENANCE – How much hands-on work does your blogging solution need? Does it take care of most of the activities and features for you, or do you have to do everything by hand? This will have a serious impact on your workflow.
  • MONETIZATION OPTIONS – Many people start a blog or website to eventually earn money. If that is your objective as well, you better choose a platform that enables you to do that in a way that works for you.

The weighing of the factors above will be different depending on your skills, goals, and requirements. Keep them in mind while we compare the best blogging platforms out there.

 

BEST BLOGGING PLATFORMS AND SITES- BOTH PAID AND FREE


1– WORDPRESS.ORG- BEST FOR SELF HOSTED BLOGS

 

wordpress.org image

 

Among the best blog sites, the self-hosted version of WordPress is, by far the most popular blogging platform in the world. WordPress powers over 90 percent of all the blogs on the Internet. It’s often confused with its close cousin WordPress.com. We will cover the latter as well.

WordPress.org self-hosted version is perfect for all kinds of blogs, but mostly for those who are serious about blogging:

  • Personal blogs
  • Business blogs
  • Online businesses
  • Bloggers who want full control over their site

PROS:

Very flexible – WordPress gives you full control over every aspect of your site

  • Highly extendable – you can add almost any functionality through plugins ( The WordPress directory has over 55,000).
  • Thousands of mobile-friendly themes allow you to switch the design of your blog at the touch of a button
  • The platform is search engine friendly and works well with social media
  • You will have full ownership of your content
  • Its large community means lots of support options

CONS:

You need to have a web hosting and a domain name.

The first step to start a high-end blog is to sign up for web hosting with Bluehost.

You can get started with them for just $2.95/month (63% off) and start your blogging empire.

 

Get Started with Bluehost

SETUP AND PRICING:

WordPress is an open-source blogging platform which means it’s free to use. However, to set it up, you’ll need a domain name ($10/year) and web hosting ($4/mo). Also, you may want to spend money on paid plugins and themes that add more flexibility to your blog.

2- WORDPRESS.COM: BEST FOR FREE BLOGS

 

image of word press.com

 

WordPress.com is a blog site hosting service by Automattic. You can get a free blog with basic features. For advanced functionality, you need to opt for one of their paid plans. It can be a great starting point for blogging.

If you ever decide to have more control over your site, it’s relatively easy to move from WordPress.com to WordPress.org.

PERFECT FOR

  • Small hobby blogs
  • For people who want to test waters with blogging

It’s a good option for small blogs or hobby blogs that are not actively maintained.

PROS:

Super easy to set up – just create an account and follow the installation wizard

  • Hosting is included, so you have less moving parts to deal with.
  • The interface is even more streamlined than self-hosted WordPress.
  • No need to worry about site maintenance, everything is done for you.
  • Built-in stats and community functions.
  • Professional and dedicated support on paid plans.

CONS:

  • The free account is very limited, e.g., your blog is hosted on a subdomain.
  • Narrow customization options, third-party themes, and plugins are only available on Business plans.
  • Limited monetization opportunities, advertising is forbidden for lower plans.
  • You can lose your site if you violate the terms and services of the platform.
  • Ads and branding are present on your site unless you pay to remove them.

SETUP AND PRICING:

Paid WordPress.com plans cost between $4 and $25 per month (billed annually). Each tier increases the amount of storage space, features (including monetization options) and support. With the Business plan, you can install external plugins and themes and connect your site to Google Analytics.

Signing up with WordPress.com and building a limited free blog can be done here – WordPress.com.

 

3- WIX – BEST FOR SMALL WEBSITES

 

image of Wix website

 

Wix is a website builder. It allows you to put together your web presence via drag and drop and comes with blogging ability that you can add to your site.

PERFECT FOR:

  • Small business owners who need a blog with a website
  • Creative artists who mostly share photos

PROS:

  • Ability to customize your site with templates and third-party apps
  • No coding skills required, you can achieve everything with the graphical interface
  • Quick and easy setup, includes top-notch hosting
  • Lots of design options and everything is built with HTML5
  • Has a feature to automatically design your blog using an artificial intelligence
  • Comes with free stock images

CONS:

  • The free account comes with limited capabilities, traffic, storage and has Wix branding and ads
  • The number of free apps is limited
  • You are unable to change your site template after choosing it
  • The e-commerce capabilities of Wix are limited, even on paid plans
  • The service charges for many things so costs rack up easily
  • You are unable to move your site elsewhere and take your content with you

SETUP AND PRICING:

Wix is subscription-based and offers different packages. They start at $13/month for 2GB of bandwidth and 3GB storage plus the ability to connect a custom domain (which you need to pay yourself). Higher plans add more bandwidth and storage, free domains, apps, the ability to create an online store and remove the ads. The most expensive plan ($39/month) also comes with VIP support.

Visit Wix.com to start a free blog

4– Constant Contact Web Builder– AI-Powered Web Builder – Ideal for new bloggers

 

constant contact website builder

 

Constant Contact’s A.I.-powered website builder is fast. Really fast. Just answer a few questions and the website builder creates a personalized website based on your business or passion-complete with images and suggestions for the best content to include.

It’s easy to edit and add new pages or sections. You can customize your website as much as you want and never worry about ’breaking it’ , because their built-in design protections ensure your site will always look great on any device.

 

PROS:

 

  • Constant Contact has integrated Unsplash directly into their image library. They have over 550,000 free professional-quality images to choose from
  • Fast image load times as they provide with CDN
  • Easy to create and publish an online store within your website, and start driving sales fast.
  • Seamless integrations with Google My Business

SETUP AND PRICING:

 

You can start for free. Their paid plan goes up to $14/ month. Either plan provides you with unlimited storage, basic to advanced analytics, social sharing, contact form management and 24/7 support.

GET STARTED WITH CONSTANT CONTACT

 

5 – GATOR – PAID BLOGGING PLATFORM

 

image of host gator website builder

Created by the popular hosting company HostGator, Gator is an easy-to-use, drag-and-drop blogging platform and website builder you can use to build any website, including blogs. Gator can even be used to create an online store.

The Gator builder is separate from HostGator’s website hosting. Many bloggers use HostGator hosting with WordPress to start a blog, but Gator provides you with an all-in-one hosting solution and blogging platform, allowing you to control every facet of your site from a single location.

PERFECT FOR…

  • Beginning bloggers
  • First-time website owners
  • Anyone interested in an all-in-one blogging/hosting solution

PROS:

  • User-friendly, drag-and-drop website builder and blogging platform
  • Quick and easy setup with no technical know-how needed
  • The free domain name and SSL certificate included
  • Performance, security, and backups handled by HostGator
  • Adding e-commerce functionality only takes a few clicks

CONS:

  • No free account, but there is a money-back guarantee
  • Limited apps and extensions
  • Can only access e-commerce features with higher-priced plan

SETUP AND PRICING:

There are three different Gator website and blog builder plans. The Starter plan starts at $3.84 a month and includes free hosting, free domain name and SSL certificate, the drag-and-drop builder tool, customizable templates, site analytics, and 24/7 support.

The Premium plan starts at $5.99 a month and includes everything in the Starter plan plus priority support. Lastly, the e-commerce plan starts at $9.22 a month. It includes everything in the other plans but offers e-commerce functionality as well.

Visit GATOR WEBSITE BUILDER

6 – DRUPAL FREE BLOGGING PLATFORM(HOSTING & DOMAIN REQUIRED)

 

Drupal website builder

 

Drupal is a great option for blogs associated with businesses because it is not just a blogging platform, but a complete content management system. This means that along with your blog, web pages and other online content can be created and organized within this platform.

Drupal does not host blogs for users, so bloggers using this platform will have to find their own host someplace else.

Drupal is also not a platform that readily accommodates beginners, so it is better for those upgrading from a free blogging platform rather than for the blogger just starting out.

PROS:

  • Great for building advanced, feature-rich sites
  • Access to tons of free modules and features
  • Custom content types for added flexibility
  • Built-in access control system helps manage user permissions
  • Great taxonomy system for handling tons of data
  • Core multilingual site support

CONS:

  • Not very beginner-friendly and as easy to use like WordPress or Joomla
  • Installation requires technical expertise
  • Need to add modules to get rid of Drupal’s out-of-the-box feel

PRICING:

Drupal is an open-source platform, so it’s completely free.

Perfect for…

  • Developers
  • Designers
  • Editors
  • Anyone with the patience to learn the ropes

7 – JOOMLA– FREE BLOGGING PLATFORM (HOSTING & DOMAIN REQUIRED)

 

joomla website builder

 

If you are looking for a full content management system, Joomla is another great option for bloggers. In terms of the ease of use, Joomla may have more of a learning curve than WordPress but can be much easier to use than Drupal.

Many businesses and large corporations prefer this type of platform because it can give you flexibility with a wide range of content options.

Joomla is an open-source content management system and free to use, however, you will need to buy hosting and a domain name. For many novice bloggers, this can be a high cost unless the blog is attached to an existing business that already generates a profit.

PROS:

  • Very flexible and suitable for creating several types of websites, not just blogs
  • Dozens of professional-looking templates
  • Easy to make design changes
  • Lots of extensions available for more blog features and functionality

CONS:

  • Not beginner-friendly
  • Requires some HTML and CSS coding knowledge
  • Security, performance, and backups are your responsibility

PRICING

Like several other blogging platforms that require a little knowledge and work by their users, Joomla is completely free to download. When building a blog with Joomla, you simply need to pay for a domain and hosting.

Perfect for…

  • Technically advanced users
  • Business websites
  • Large, dynamic blogs
  • Online stores

8– MEDIUM– FREE BLOGGING PLATFORM

 

 

medium blogging platform

 

There are many great platforms out there for starting your own blog. They include sites with customizable HTML and CSS for those with more advanced skills.

Medium.com is a place to share your thoughts and writing with a wide audience. Unlike some of the other blogging platforms, Medium has a built-in audience of over 60 million, which makes it often debatable whether it’s a publisher or a platform.

SIGNING UP
Individuals or businesses can sign up for a Medium account since it’s free. Those individuals or businesses can publish their own posts, add their voice and style to other publications or curate posts or publications.

Publications are collections of posts that are curated by users and Medium itself.

POSTING AND COMMENTING
Readers can comment on other’s posts, recommend posts and follow and share their favourites. The process is like many other blogging platforms except that Medium has a slight twist on the commenting process. Readers can highlight and focus parts of the text and make their comments in the margins.

EMBEDDING
Medium allows third party embedding from other sites around the web. Creators can embed videos from YouTube or Vimeo. They can add content from Twitter, Vine, Instagram and SoundCloud.

TRAFFIC AND VIEWS
On every post, readers get to see how many minutes it would take to read a post. They’ll immediately know whether they have time to read through the story or whether they should bookmark it for later.

Another feature on the front page for viewers to see is how many views it’s gotten on the platform. Recommendations and reads are also available to creators. The dashboard allows creators to see where the traffic originated from too.

BEST PRACTICES TO CREATE POSTS
There is no minimum word count for posts, but Medium suggests that content over 400 words are popular. The headline should be compelling and clickable, but should also stick to the topic of your content. They recommend high-quality photographs for the content as well.

GREAT FOR BEGINNERS
The platform is a terrific starting point for beginners to the blogging world. It’s simple to use and doesn’t require coding knowledge. It’s also used by brands to recycle their content onto another platform to gain further reads and new readers of their content. A highly recommended free blog site for small business owners and freelance professionals.

Perfect for…

  • Professional writers and bloggers
  • Hobby bloggers
  • Anyone looking to improve their brand visibility through great curated content

PROS:

  • Completely focused on blogging and content creation
  • Quick and easy to sign up and get started
  • Excellent user interface
  • Ability to embed content from Twitter, YouTube, and more

CONS:

  • Very few customization options
  • You don’t control your content
  • No site migrations
  • Limited marketing features ad monetization options

PRICING:

Medium is free to use. You can hook your domain up to individual stories, but you’re unable to sync it to user accounts.

 

9– WEEBLY- FREE & PAID BLOGGING PLATFORM

 

weebly website image

Another best blogging platform that is great for businesses who want to maintain a blog on their website is Weebly. This platform provides a wide range of easy-to-use features, including drag and drop options for those who do not want to learn coding to make simple changes.

Since Weebly can be used for blogging and web building, business owners find this platform a lot easier to use than other platforms where blogs and websites are created separately.

To start with you can sign up to their free plan which will give you some practice writing and constructing blog posts without spending any money.

Expert coding options are also not available on this platform. If you are a blogger who wants to be able to change and customize HTML or CSS on the blog, this website Weebly.com makes it difficult to do so because it focuses its services on those who want to quickly create and update a blog without a lot of hassle.

PROS:

  • Easy to use with drag-and-drop blog building tool
  • Good selection of mobile apps
  • Strong SEO features
  • Integrates with Google Analytics

CONS:

  • Few integrated features
  • A limited number of third-party integrations
  • Difficult to export sites
  • Free plan features Weebly branding and subdomain

PRICING:

Weebly offers a free account, but it’s limited to 500MB of storage and includes Weebly branding and a subdomain. As far as paid plans go, the initial plan comes with a custom domain and costs just $4 a month.

If you want site statistics, membership options, video backgrounds, and other features, you’ll need to go with one of the higher-tier plans, which costs $8-$25 a month.

If you want to create an online store, Weebly has separate e-commerce plans that cost a little more.

PERFECT FOR…

  • Beginner bloggers with little technical skills
  • Business websites in need of blogging capabilities
  • Portfolio websites

10 – SQUARESPACE – PAID BLOGGING PLATFORM ($12- $40/MONTH)

 

 

pic of square space website builder

 

When it comes to customization, Squarespace is a platform that offers a wide variety of options. The best part about customizing your blog on this platform is that you can change everything without knowing how to code.

It is also a platform that lets your expand your services which is a great option if you are using your blog for your business. It also has its own analytics dashboard, so you can see where your website’s traffic is coming from, what pages your visitors are looking at, how they’re engaging with your content and so much more.

The downside to Squarespace for bloggers is that theme and plugin support is not as great as it could be. If you want these options on Squarespace, knowledge of code will be necessary.

 

PROS:

  • Very beginner-friendly and easy to use
  • Hosting and custom domain included
  • Variety of professional design templates to choose from
  • Built-in SSL encryption
  • Ecommerce functionality
  • 24/7 support

CONS:

  • Limited to only using the platform’s features
  • Very few third-party integrations
  • The personal plan allows for a limited number of pages and contributors

PRICING:

Like many other paid blogging platforms, Squarespace operates via the subscription model. You can choose from one of two plans. The Personal plan is $16 a month and the Business plan is $26 a month.

Both plans offer unlimited bandwidth and storage. However, the Business plan also includes several marketing features, the ability to customize designs, and the ability to create an online store.

PERFECT FOR…

  • Professional and hobby bloggers
  • Business owners
  • Ecommerce stores
  • Portfolio websites

11 – TYPEPAD– PAID BLOGGING PLATFORM ($8.95 to $49.95/ MONTH)

 

type pad website image

 

Typepad is a blogging platform that provides an easy-to-use interface for beginners and experienced bloggers. The platform provides a wide range of themes to choose from as well as plugins so you can make your blog your own.

A key drawback to using Typepad is that all of the blogs are hosting by them on their server, so you do not have the option to use the platform with your own blog host.

It is also a platform that makes editing code difficult because it is geared towards bloggers who may not be as confident in editing HTML code for example.

PROS:

  • Active dashboard for quick drafting and publishing of content
  • Several social media integrations
  • Google-friendly posting features
  • Supports live audio and video podcasts
  • Unique tip jar and other monetization features
  • Both blog and individual post data analysis

CONS:

  • Free 14-day trial, but Typepad is a paid platform
  • Restrictions on the number of blogs you can create
  • Few integrated widgets

PRICING:

Typepad offers several pricing plans to meet the needs of a variety of users. The Plus plan is $8.95 a month. With it, you get unlimited storage, an array of design templates, domain mapping, and personal support.

The next step up is the Unlimited plan at $14.95 a month. With Unlimited Plan you get everything in the Plus plan as well as fully customizable designs and the ability to publish unlimited blogs. Meanwhile, the Premium plan is $29.95 a month, and it includes all of the above plus priority support. There is also an enterprise plan for $49.95 per month.

A free 14-day trial is available with all of the plans.

 

PERFECT FOR…

  • Professional bloggers
  • Industry influencers
  • Large organizations

 

12 – BLOGGER– FREE BLOGGING PLATFORM

image of blogger.com website

 

If there is one platform that is easy for beginners to use, it is Blogger. This is a free blogging platform that is simple to use for anyone just starting out with a blog.

With this platform, a user can just type their content, add photos and publish. Blogger.com also lets users edit HTML and add widgets to blog, which many blogging sites for beginners do not offer. Blogger is a Google service, so users will have to have a Google account and may find the Google-related add-ons redundant or useless for their blog.

It is also one of the blogging platforms that many bloggers grow out of once they learn more about blogging since it does not have any upgrade options.

PROS:

  • Free and easy to use
  • Takes care of hosting, maintenance, and more
  • Several mobile responsive templates to choose from
  • Integrates with Google Drive and other Google products
  • Anti-spam comment feature

CONS:

  • Limited blogging tools
  • Zero integration with third-party apps and services
  • Few design options
  • Ads are displayed on your blog

PRICING

Blogger has been around for what seems like forever, and while it lacks the functionality and design options of WordPress and several other of today’s popular blogging platforms, it costs absolutely nothing to use. In fact, the only expense you’ll have with a Blogger blog is a custom domain, but going this route is completely up to you.

PERFECT FOR…

  • Hobby bloggers
  • Personal blogs

13- TUMBLR.COM – FREE BLOGGING PLATFORM

 

image of tumblr blog

 

Tumblr is a blogging platform that is very popular with younger audiences. Traditionally created for “microblogging”, the platform itself is very simple to use and enables the user to obtain a free website ( although you will never own the content or domain name.

One of the best features of Tumblr is that it is focused on the community of bloggers, so it provides a variety of options for sharing and reblogging content.

The downside to blogging on Tumblr.com is that it does not focus on text content, but photos and GIFs. Visual bloggers will love it, but writers may want to find another platform to use.

The idea of reblogging content may also lack appeal with bloggers, particularly if you are blogging material that you want to have complete control over copyright and other such protections.

PROS:

  • Free and easy to use
  • Includes hosting, but uses a subdomain
  • Integrated sharing and re-blogging social features
  • Several design options
  • Easy to publish images, videos, audio, and other multimedia

CONS:

  • Features are quite limited
  • Backing up your files and content isn’t impossible, but it’s definitely not easy

PRICING:

Like Blogger and several other blogging platforms, Tumblr is completely free to use. There are costs for a custom domain and third-party themes and apps, but these are optional.

PERFECT FOR…

  • Hobby bloggers
  • Personal and micro-blogs

 

14 – GHOST.ORG PAID BLOGGING PLATFORM ($29 – $199/ MONTH)

 

image of ghost.org website

 

Ghost is an open-source and one of the best blogging platform that provides a simple, clean interface that makes it very easy to use. It also provides a live preview of your post while you are writing it, so you can easily correct any writing or coding mistakes as you go along.

This platform can be great for beginners because of its ease of use, but expert bloggers may also prefer it because of its interface compared to other blogging services.

The downside to Ghost is that it can be difficult to install at first but once it is, it can be a great tool for any blogger.

Again for running a blog on Ghost, you will require web hosting – I recommend BlueHost.

PROS:

  • Emphasis on blogging
  • Clean, streamlined, and intuitive interface
  • Built on JavaScript, so it’s super-fast
  • Live blog post previews
  • Built-in social media and SEO capabilities
  • Accelerated Mobile Pages function
  • Zero setup for the hosted version

CONS:

  • Customizing could be easier
  • Limited configuration options
  • Limited number of themes
  • Self-hosted version is difficult to set up

PRICING:

The self-hosted version of Ghost is completely free, but it’s difficult to set up and definitely not for everyone. Fortunately, Ghost offers paid hosted plans as well. As with most paid plans, the more you pay, the more storage, bandwidth, and features you receive.

The Basic plan costs $29 a month, or $19 if you opt for annual billing. With it, you get a blog, SSL encryption, a CDN, and up to 50,000 monthly page views.

For $79 a month, the Standard plan provides up to 500,000 monthly page views, more resources, and priority support. The top-tier Business plan is $199 a month, and with this, you get a whopping one million views per month, subdirectory use, a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee, and more.

 

PERFECT FOR…

  • Bloggers in need of advanced technical solutions
  • Professional bloggers with a growing online presence
  • Serious publishers

15- JEKYLL– BLOG HOSTED BY GITHUB

picture of Jekyll website

 

The latest version of Jekyll (4.0.0.) is a “simple, blog-aware, static site generator.” Content gets created in TXT files, which get placed into folders. Then you build your site via Liquid language templates. Jekyll then merges the content and the template together, and voila, a website is generated that can be uploaded to a server.

For those that need a host, there is integration with Jekyll to host the website for free on GitHub.

While there is a comprehensive ‘quick-start guide’ on the Jekyll website, it hardly offers the simplicity of some competing blogging platforms that can do this all from a web interface.

However, the benefits that Jekyll offers are advanced features, which include options for paginating posts, available plugins, templates, and community-maintained themes. It also supports blog migration from other platforms.

The plus here is that there is no cost to the platform, but the downside is that there is only community support, and the work takes place in the Ruby development environment, so many newbies will be put off.

 

BEST BLOGGING PLATFORMS AND SITES-LET’S WRAP IT UP

When looking for the best blogging platform, you have many candidates to consider. Each comes with its pros and cons.

There are three varieties: self-hosted blogging platforms, hosted blog sites, and site builders that also have blogging capabilities.

Which is the most suitable for you depends on your needs, goals, and preferences. Here on ubqdigitalmarketing.com, we like the self-hosted WordPress. It’s what this site is built on and we have had solid experience with it. It’s powerful, super flexible, and deserves to be among the best blog sites for a reason.

The best way to find the right platform for your needs is to understand whether each platform focuses on beginners or experts, how much it costs to use and how much customization your audience will demand.

Remember that it can be easy to upgrade to a better platform in most cases, so starting with an easy-to-use option is great for anyone just starting out in the blogosphere and wanting to learn how to start a blog.

That’s the end of our guide. If you haven’t decided on a blog platform yet – don’t worry.

You can head right over to all the free platforms, create your accounts and start playing around with their features.

Give it a while and go with the one which suits you the most. 

OR you can go for paid hosting plans. You can start a blog now with Bluehost and get 63% off your hosting plan ($2.95/month).
Try Bluehost

Don’t have time to write a blog post yourself? Content Cucumber is here to help you. Writers at Content Cucumber can write unlimited content for you for a small flat monthly fee.

Learn more about Content Cucumber.

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.

Umama Batool Qazi is a full-time Dentist, Blogger and Pinterest marketer having a keen interest in discovering new ways to reach more clients through Pinterest. Join me and other readers here at ubqdigitalmarketing.com to learn about blogging and digital marketing using our recommended resources.

How to Start a Blog (to Make Money or Otherwise) in 2020

How to Start a Blog (to Make Money or Otherwise) in 2020

If you want to learn how to start a blog and make money blogging, you have come to the right place

Hi, I am Umama and I have created this blog UBQ Digital Marketing.com just few months ago as an experiment to prove that you don’t need prior experience to launch your own blog and you don’t have to be passionate about writing to start a blog. You just need the right guidance.

how to start a blog

 

With four million blog posts published every day, a lot of people think that it’s too saturated to make money blogging in 2020.

I would say that if you want to make money from your blog,

ELIMINATE the word PASSION.

Passion won’t make money, Brains and tactics do.

If you don’t know I am a Dental Surgeon. I am a full-time postgraduate student. I am into this profession head to toe for the last 12 years. Dentistry is something I am passionate about. I know the most about it.

But my Blog is not about Dental Problems.

It’s about Digital Marketing, Pinterest and online business tools.

WHY? Because I did my research before starting the blog and found out that the health field is very competitive. There are several excellent blogs out there on health and fitness which are fulfilling the search intent of the audience and their websites have excellent domain rating.

Starting from ZERO, it will take me years to rank on Google and to earn money.
So, I decided that if I want to make money from blogging, I have to give up my passion.

I have to stay away from the competition.

I noticed that people are switching to remote jobs and online business tools are a lot in demand. So I picked this niche after due research.

In this article, I will hold you by hand and will walk you through this journey of mine of starting a profitable blog step by step.

I have made a lot of mistakes along the way. Mistakes help you learn but they also prolong your way to success. I genuinely don’t want you to repeat those mistakes.

So why should you follow my blogging advice?

Because I was a newbie like you. I have started this blog after reading and exhausting almost every blog written on this topic for approximately one month. I have watched tons of video tutorials. and I worked full time 9 to 5 along with that.

Though there are many good articles out there, I have written this post with the intent of sharing my experience as someone who has to use every tool like Bluehost, WordPress, SEM Rush etc for the first time, and provide courage to someone like me to take the first step towards blogging and change their lives.

This ultimate guide for beginners will cover how to choose the right niche, generate traffic, and monetize your site in the fastest timeframe possible – all while working full-time.

Today, I will help you learn how to start a blog using the same steps I have used to launch this blog. 

Make sure to give this guide a thorough read, then save it in your bookmarks and come back to it later. You can also sign up for my email list and get a free PDF with strategies that go along with this guide.

Let’s get started.

Disclaimer: Please note that this post includes affiliate links which provide a commission to me at no cost to you. However, the links are for the best software and tools you need to start a successful blog. For more information, you can read my affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy.

 

HOW TO START A BLOG IN 10 EASY STEPS?

  1. Research about your niche
  2. Write Down Your Blog’s Goals.
  3. Choose a Domain Name.
  4. Choose a Web Hosting Plan and Register Your Domain.
  5. Install WordPress – Your Blogging Platform
  6. Pick and install the Right Theme.
  7. Install WordPress Plugins.
  8. Set Up Your Site’s SEO and Permalink Structure.
  9. Write or Outsource Content for Your Blog.
  10. Leverage guest posting to build your domain authority
  11. FAQs

1. RESEARCH ABOUT YOUR NICHE.

The first step to starting a blog is to get started with Bluehost. Use my link below and get started for just $2.95/month (63% off your hosting plan)

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We all know that your blog needs a niche – whether it’s weight loss, supplements, travel, food recipes, lifestyle, finance, money management etc, there are an endless amount of things to blog about.

FORGET YOUR PASSION, IF YOU WANT OT MAKE MONEY BLOGGING

Let’s start planning our blog niche

There are 3 important things

  1. Who your audience is?
  2. Does your niche contain affiliate marketing potential?
  3. Perform Keyword research.

1- WHO YOUR AUDIENCE IS?

When choosing a blog niche first find out who is your audience is and what pain point are you going to solve and how much your audience can pay you for that.
If I give you my example.

Though I am a dentist, I lived check to check. I never wanted to quit my profession because it’s my passion but I wanted to start some side hustle from home which can help me save money and live a better lifestyle.

So my audience is

  1. People of my age 25 to 40 years old.
  2. People who work full time and want to start some side business.
  3. Especially women who have to manage house and kids as well,

So I choose the niche about blogging and online business tools. As people who want to start online businesses of their own need online business tools to support their business. A blog about software reviews will do well for such people.

My plan is that people will come to my site to read about the software they needed for their business. If they go on the software company’s website through my link and buy it. The company will then pay me.

See if you want to earn, your niche must have affiliate marketing potential, otherwise, how would you monetize it?

2- AFFILIATE MARKETING POTENTIAL OF THE NICHE.

Affiliate marketing is my favourite form of blog monetization – it’s the most passive and once you start ranking on Google you can make money while you sleep.

Affiliate marketing is the act of recommending products and services of other businesses and making a commission on every sale.
how to start a blog: Affiliate marketing infographic
                                                                   Source: vectorstock.com

Most large companies have affiliate programs you can join. Once you apply and are approved into their programs, you can grab your unique affiliate links to add to your blog, view reporting on clicks/sales, and see any future payouts.

Here are some steps to get started with affiliate marketing:

  • Apply to a company’s affiliate program either on their site or in an affiliate network.
  • For this, you’ll need a website and an email address from your domain – not just a Gmail or Yahoo email. A Gmail/Hotmail or yahoo mail might work for a while but having a professional email address increases your credibility and you can get it from G Suite under $6/ month. So it is pretty cheap.
  • When you get approved, grab your unique affiliate link, and copy/paste it into any piece text on your blog.

When a user clicks that specific link, a cookie is stored in their computer which credits the sale to you based on the cookie duration – typically 30, 60, or 90 days.

Now, consider this simple formula…

  • To make a lot of money blogging, you need affiliate income.
  • To make affiliate income, you need to rank on Google and get web traffic.
  • To get web traffic, you need to rank for keywords that drive the most affiliate revenue.

So what are these keywords?
The answer: keywords with the word “best” in them.
Here are some examples:

  • In finance, it could be: best credit cards, best auto loans, or best home insurance
  • In tech, the keywords could be: best laptop of 2020, best VR headsets, or best Mac accessories
  • In marketing (like my blog), it could be: best email marketing software, best web hosting, or a best website builder

These “best” keywords are searched by people looking for product reviews.

They want to read a blog with in-depth content on the “best” something before making a purchase (and they aren’t ready to go right to a company’s website and buy something yet.)

Think about it.

If you’re searching for a new laptop, you might type in “best laptop of 2020.”
Google this term right now and look at the top 10 results.

How to start a blog: best laptops
Every single website in the top 10 results is an affiliate. No actual companies selling laptops – no Best Buy, no Walmart, no Dell, no HP – just affiliates recommending laptops.

Every single top 10 result is an affiliate.

Why do these affiliate sites outrank company sites?

They are all blogs with long-form, in-depth articles that search engines prefer. 
What you’ll begin to realize is that most profitable blogs are, in fact, websites making affiliate commissions.

Once you grasp this, you’ll begin to see affiliate sites everywhere.
So now when you think of blogging and planning your niche, replicate sites like these:

  • Finance: NerdWallet, Fool.com, WalletHub, CardRatings
  • Tech: Tom’s Guide, Techradar, Wire Cutter, CNET
  • Travel: Nomadic Matt, The PointsGuy, Expert Vagabond
  • Business: The Balance SMB, FitSmallBusiness, FinancesOnline

I think that the most profitable niches right now for new bloggers are finance, tech, travel, business, and marketing.

 

3-  KEYWORD RESEARCH.

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

There are several tools out there like ahrefs, SEM rush and Uber Suggest which help you pick your niche. Ahrefs is the most advanced and the best tool out there but Uber Suggest is a cheaper one.

It’s very simple. Are people searching for the things you want to write about?

It’s a fact: You need to become an expert in keyword research and search engine optimization (SEO) so that your blog can rank on Google.

Why? 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.

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

So what do you look for?

  • 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 is their domain authority?

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

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 type 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.

SUMMING UP KEYWORD RESEARCH

A blog needs a mix of both super high-volume/high competition and medium volume, low competition keywords.
Here are some of the tools you can use for your keyword research:

After doing your keyword research, discovering a lucrative audience and niche, and planning how to leverage your professional connections, it’s time to get to work.
How to start a blog: most profitable niches

Source: itsnotyour9to5.com

 

2. WRITE DOWN YOUR BLOG’S GOALS.

As the famous Pablo Picasso said

“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.”

This is true when starting a new blog.
After choosing your niche, you need a way to keep track of everything — not just your to-dos and content ideas, but also your goals, ideas, and motivations.

The key during this stage is not to over complicate things.

YOUR BLOG’S GOALS.

It’s time to think big and write down what you want to accomplish with your blog in the short and long term. These should be SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
how to start a blog: SMART Goals
                                                   Source:www.fitsmallbusiness.com

When I was starting this blog, I kept a record of everything in a journal. I prefer writing down things with a pen in a journal. I find it handier. You can take the help of Google Docs or Microsoft Word as well.

Set your daily, weekly and monthly goals, up to 03 months. 06 months and 1 year.

Here are a few examples from my document when I started planning my blog:

  • Complete my home page, resources and contact page by March’20
  • Write and publish my first blog post of 7,000+ words by March 28th,20
  • Launch the blog with my first post by 30th March,20
  • Obtain 50 backlinks for all published articles by April 30
  • Publish 15 guest posts by June’ 20
  • Get 1,000 blog site visitors/month by June’ 20
  • Get 250 people in my email list by June ‘20

As you can see, these are all short term attainable goals with clear due dates.

Ready to launch your blog with Bluehost? Get started for just $2.95/month (63% off your hosting plan) with my link below:
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3. CHOOSE A DOMAIN NAME.

In the past, I took way too much time on this step. I scoured GoDaddy and different other domain name generators for weeks trying to find the perfect catchy, niche-specific, short, memorable dot com domain.

While this step is important, it’s probably not as important as you think.
The common advice is to “niche down” and choose an ultra-specific name, I recommend you choose a website name that’s broad enough to allow you to pivot if necessary.

If your focus is too narrow and suddenly you lose passion for your niche or run out of topic ideas, you’re stuck with your new domain. However, if you broaden your focus a little bit, you can expand your content and have enough fluidity to maintain consistency, avoid quitting, and better promote your website for the long haul.

In the past, I tried starting online businesses and chose ultra-specific names. When I didn’t see immediate success, I got discouraged and thought, “Well, maybe this niche isn’t for me. I should quit and try something else.”

Here’s what you could do instead: choose a broader name and worry about being specific in your posts and pages.

Here are some other things you need to consider before picking a name for your website.

1. THE PRICE OF THE DOMAIN.

You have to buy your blog’s domain name from a domain registrar company. It should cost you roughly $10/year. Never buy a premium domain you simply don’t need them as a new blogger.

Moreover, If you get started with Bluehost web hosting, you get a free domain name for the first year.

To get started with Bluehost and get 63% off your hosting plan, use my link below:
Try Bluehost

 

2. YOUR PERSONAL NAME AS A DOMAIN NAME?

Many people prefer to use their names for their blogs Personal domains are more flexible than the ones based on any particular niche. Many times, bloggers need to change the name of their blog according to the changing scenario of their blogging niche.

However, if your name is your domain, then there is no need to change it when you want to add more verticals to your niche.

3. DOMAIN EXTENSIONS.

Domains come with different extensions – .com, .us, .guru, .sport, .com, etc.
.us stands for the United States, .guru is used for coaching blogs, and .sport is used for sports blogs.

However, .com is the top-level domain that’s more inclusive and mostly favoured by Google and other search engines.

OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A DOMAIN NAME:

  1. Your name should not be too difficult and complex to type. It should also be memorable and aligned with your brand. That’s why a dot com extensions are an excellent option.
  2. Don’t confuse people with difficult spelling so keep the name easy to spell and pronounce.
  3. Avoid using numbers and hyphens in your domain as it can confuse people.
  4. Try to incorporate a keyword that best represents your blog if possible. It’s not as important to have a keyword in your blog name for SEO, but it might help people identify your blog’s niche right away.

4. CHOOSE A BLOG HOSTING COMPANY AND REGISTER YOUR DOMAIN.

Every website needs a web host to store their site on a server so that people can access it online. Without a hosting account, your blog won’t be visible on the internet.

The performance of your blog relies heavily on your provider, so you should choose the best web hosting you can. A good hosting platform keeps your site up and running without interruption, provides security, and integrates with WordPress.

You should choose a host that is reliable, popular and comes at an affordable price.
At this stage, your best option is a simple shared hosting plan. I recommend Bluehost as the best option this year.

Here’s why:

  1. 99% Server Uptime
  2. High-end security measures
  3. High-speed servers
  4. An easy-to-use dashboard that comes in handy for beginners
  5. Numerous hosting options to choose from
  6. 24/7 customer support
  7. Free SSL certificate
  8. Easy c Panel dashboard
  9. 1-click WordPress Installation
  10. Recommended by WordPress as the host of choice
  11. Low introductory pricing
  12. Money-back guarantee
  13. Only costs $3.95/month (via my Bluehost links on this page)

Next, register your domain with Bluehost and choose a web hosting company that aligns best with your expectations.

Follow this step-by-step guide to register your domain name along with your web hosting plan with Bluehost:

STEP #1: VISIT BLUEHOST.COM.

Click on the “Get Started” CTA button on the homepage.

STEP #2: CHOOSE YOUR WEB HOSTING PLAN.

On the next page, you will see four shared hosting plans.
These plans include Basic, Plus, Choice Plus, and Pro.

While all these shared hosting plans are perfect for a new blog, I would personally recommend going for the Basic Plan.

For a step up, the Choice Plus Plan offers the Domain Privacy, which will help you protect your information and guard all your confidential details, including full name, email address, residential address, and phone number.

STEP #3: ENTER YOUR DOMAIN NAME.

So, you have already selected your domain name (as specified in the second step).
Now, after you choose your hosting plan, you will be directed to a new page where you will be asked to enter your domain name.

If you’ve already selected your domain name, then you can add the information here. And if you need a new one, with Bluehost, you get your domain name for free for the first year.

If you need more time to come up with a website name, you can always sign-up and choose your domain later.

Next, you’re prompted to create your account, which is the final step of the process.

STEP #4: ENTER YOUR DETAILS.

Here are the “Account Information” details you need to enter to create your account.
Make sure to enter the correct details, including your first and last name, business name if applicable, country, address, etc.

Upon scrolling down, you’ll see the “Package Information” section.
It includes selecting how long do you want to opt for the plan and how much advance you are willing to pay.

It allows you to pay 12, 24, 36, or 60 months upfront and gives you better pricing for longer terms. If you are sure that you will be running your blog for a long time, then I’d say go with the “Prime 36 Month Price” to get the lowest possible monthly price.

You can also get a low upfront payment by paying annually instead of monthly.

There’s another section called “Package Extras.”
You can uncheck Codeguard Basic and SiteLock Security. These are unnecessary and can be replicated with other free WordPress plugins.

Finally, pick your payment option. You can choose to make the payment via credit card or PayPal.

That’s all it takes to sign up!
Ready to launch your blog with Bluehost? Get started for just $2.95/month (63% off your hosting plan) with my link below:
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STEP #5: YOU HAVE SUCCESSFULLY REGISTERED YOUR DOMAIN NAME AND HOSTING PLAN.

 

Congratulations – you’ve set up your hosting for the first time.
You’re now signed up with Bluehost, which means you’ve completed a vital first step. Let’s continue.

STEP #6: CREATE YOUR ACCOUNT AND SET YOUR PASSWORD.

 

You’re almost done – after receiving an email from Bluehost, you just need to enter your domain name and create a password for your account.

STEP #7: LOG IN TO BLUEHOST.

Use the password you just set to log in to your account. You can also sign in with Google if you prefer.
And you’re all set! Now that the web hosting setup is out of the way, it’s time to move on to installing WordPress and getting into your blogging dashboard.

5. INSTALL WORDPRESS AS YOUR BLOGGING CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (CMS)

After getting through the first phase of planning your blog and choosing web hosting, the next step is to choose WordPress as your blogging platform.

Your blog platform, also known as a Content Management System (CMS), is where you will be writing, customizing, and publishing your blog posts. Naturally, you are going to need something user-friendly, powerful, and affordable.

There are paid and free blogging platforms available to choose from.

Have a look at some of the top blogging platforms and their usage:
Most people run their blogs on WordPress, which is apparent from the above stats.
WordPress also offers multiple free plugins, themes, and various ways to modify your blog.

You don’t need to have any technical coding knowledge to get started.
If you’re using Bluehost, you simply use the 1-Click WordPress Installation and you’re in your WordPress dashboard.

However, before you get started, you should know the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.

WORDPRESS.COM VS. WORDPRESS.ORG – WHICH ONE SHOULD YOU CHOOSE?

Here are some of the common differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org:

How to start a blog: Word Press.com VS WordPress.org

If your eventual goal is to make money through your blog, then think no further before selecting the self-hosted WordPress.org.

A blog is an extension of your personal brand and needs to be something that you own outright. You shouldn’t rely on a subdomain or blog site like Tumblr to host your blog.

WordPress.com has minimal options and doesn’t allow you to tweak settings or pick a custom domain name. (Eg: yoursite.wordpress.com). If you do want to use a custom domain name, you would have to pay extra.

It also comes with limited monetization and analytics options. On top of that, with WordPress.com, you can’t upload plugins and themes from outside WordPress.

WordPress.org, on the other hand, gives you complete freedom to download plugins and themes from different platforms, customize your blog design, monetize your blogging efforts, and more.

Naturally, it’s suggested to use WordPress.org when it comes to starting a blog set up for long term success.

With Bluehost, you can install WordPress and run your own blog in a matter of minutes.

Let’s get started.

 

INSTALL WORDPRESS WITH BLUEHOST’S ONE-CLICK INSTALLATION PROCESS.

 

Bluehost automatically one-click installs WordPress right from your Bluehost dashboard.

After you’re done setting up your account password, you’re prompted to pick a theme.

There are plenty of attractive free WordPress themes to choose from, including free blog themes.

However, if you want to pick your theme later, you can skip this step for now by clicking on the “Skip This Step” option at the end of the page.

From here, you’re directed to a new page where you need to click on the “Start Building” option.

Next, select what type of site are you planning to create, and WordPress will help you in the process with prompts. You can also just click “I don’t need help” to go right to your dashboard.

Finally, enter your “Site Title” and your “Site Description.”

From here, you are directed to a page to decide the layout of your blog. You can either create a custom home page with the page editor or simply host your recent blog posts on your homepage.

From here, spend some time making yourself familiar with the functionalities of your new WordPress blog. Make sure to test out all the features and play around with different themes to pick the one that best suits you.

This brings us to our next step – choosing a theme.

Are you ready to start your blog with Bluehost? Get started for just $2.95/month (63% off your hosting plan) with my link below:
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6. CHOOSE YOUR BLOG’S THEME.

 

Now that you have a WordPress account, you need to choose your WordPress theme.

A WordPress theme is a collection of templates, files, and stylesheets that dictate the appearance and design of your WordPress-powered website.

Right now, your blog might look something like this:

how to start a blog: word press themes

 

This is the default WordPress theme, and on the left side is your appearance customization menu that helps you customize your theme.

While this base theme isn’t the best, it can be used to get familiar with the appearance editor.

In the theme appearance editor, you can edit:

  • Site identity – your business name, logo and other navigation items
  • Colors – you can choose the colors for fonts, buttons, blocks, and other items
  • Menus – you can edit the placement of your menu navigation and which pages to include
  • Additional CSS – this is a place where you can place custom CSS instead of messing with your theme editor files

There are some blog design principles to keep in mind. 
For example, fonts should be between 14 and 17 points, legible, and easy to read. You should also have menu navigation that looks good on mobile and desktop.

Websites with a poorly organized layout are difficult to navigate and impair your blog’s user experience.

Remember, you don’t necessarily have to spend money to install a paid theme if you find a free one you like. However, make sure it looks nice, loads quickly, and readers can access information easily.

Finally, don’t overdo the design – a blog should be highly-functional and uncomplicated.

 

INSTALL A NEW THEME FOR YOUR BLOG.

 

Here’s how you can install a new theme for your WordPress blog:

First, log in to your WordPress account (admin page).
You can always access your WordPress login page by going to yourdomainname.com/wp-admin.

How to start a blog: WordPress admin

Next, add your WordPress login credentials.
Once logged in, your WordPress dashboard looks something like this.

 

How to start a blog: wordpress dashboard

Here, click on the “Appearance” option from the sidebar menu.

appearnace option on wordpress dashboard

 

Next, select the “Themes” option from the “Appearance” section.

 

themes option

To search for the theme options WordPress offers, click the “Add New” button at the top of the page.

 

add new themes on wordpress

As you can see below, there are a ton of free themes to choose from.

 

Themes of WordPress

You can scroll down and preview as many themes as you want before picking one for your blog.

You can also filter out the themes based on three categories: “Subject,” “Features,” and “Layout.”

Here’s what the filter option looks like:

filter options for WordPress themes

Apply the filters narrows down your options. You can then click on a thumbnail and get an instant preview of what your final blog is going to look like.

If you like a particular theme, you can click on the “Install” button.

If you don’t want to use a stock WordPress theme, there are plenty of sites like GeneratePress, StudioPress, and CSSIgniter that offer paid themes you can buy. When you buy a theme, a zip file is sent to you via email.

To install this external theme, all that you have to do is go to “Appearance” – “Themes” and click “Add New,” upload the zip file and click install.

Congratulations, you now have a WordPress site with a new theme installed.

Still, need web hosting? Sick of reading this guide and ready to start? Get started with Bluehost for $2.95/month and get 63% off your blog hosting plan with my link below.

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EXTRA TIPS ON CHOOSING THE RIGHT THEME.

  1. Read the descriptions of the various WordPress themes to get an idea about their features. This will help you get an idea of whether the theme will be compatible with your niche or not.
  2. Choose a responsive theme that works well on both desktop and mobile devices (most of them are).
  3. WordPress also allows users to give ratings to their themes – make sure to check out the reviews to get a feel for the quality of the theme.
  4. Before installing a theme, make sure to check its demo or preview to know what it’s going to look like.

You can also install a large number of WordPress themes from other popular sites, such as:

  • Themeforest
  • Studiopress
  • Thrive Themes.
  • Elementor
  • Elegant Themes.
  • CSS Igniter.

FREE, PREMIUM, AND CUSTOM THEMES.

There are many free blog themes available on WordPress. However, sometimes these come with limited design options. A paid theme costs you about $ 70. If you don’t want to buy a premium theme you can easily get started with a free theme.
That said, you can always start your blog with a free theme and then move on to a more personalized one after your content is up. As long as it loads fast and allows you to start publishing content, there’s no reason not just to get started and worry about your perfect design later.

Now that your theme is all set, let’s move onto extending the functionality of your blog with WordPress plugins.

Disclaimer: Please note that this post includes affiliate links which provide a commission to me at no cost to you. However, the links are for the best software and tools you need to start a successful blog. For more information, you can read my affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy.

7. INSTALL YOUR 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 personally 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 free 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 optimizing 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 $9/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) THIRSTYAFFILIATES.

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.

Now that we covered the best plugins to install for your blog, let’s move onto some SEO settings to pay attention to.

8. SET UP YOUR BLOG’S SEO AND PERMALINK STRUCTURE.

A very important SEO factor is the URLs of your blog posts and pages.
When you add a new page or post, you see the page editor and can choose the URL after dot com. Check out the link below:

This text after the .com is what a permalink looks like.

Permalinks are static hyperlinks that will lead your audience to a specific web page.
By default, your permalink is set to “yourdomainname.com/postID.”

This not only looks unattractive but isn’t the best from an SEO standpoint.
Before you start writing content for your blog, make sure to set a specific permalink structure.

From your WordPress dashboard, go to “Setting” —> “Permalinks.”
You can choose from a couple of options. Most high-ranking blogs follow the “Post name” or “Custom” structures below.

The main thing to know is that every post or page should focus on one target keyword which should be in the area right after the dot com.

For blog posts, this permanent URL is the only thing that needs to remain unchanged. You can change a page or post’s title, meta description, content and headings, but the URL needs to stay the same.

This is because if you get inbound links to this URL, changing it would result in a 404 error and losing that link value.

Finally, make sure to save the settings before exiting the page.
Also, make sure you set up Google Analytics and Google Search Console. These two tools are 100% necessary to index your blog to Google and monitor your traffic. These can both be easily integrated with the Yoast SEO plugin.

Okay, let’s stop and review where we are right now.
You purchased web hosting, set up your domain, installed your WordPress theme and plugins, and optimized your website’s permalinks for SEO.
Now, it’s time to start creating content for your blog.

Ready to create your blog? Let’s do this! Get started with Bluehost for $2.95/month and get 63% off your hosting plan.
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9. WRITE YOUR BLOG OR OUTSOURCE IT.

After completing the framework of your blog, it’s time to create your content.

I am a big proponent of hiring someone else to write my blog post for my blog. There is nothing wrong in it and this is called Ghost Blogging.

It helps me to focus on more important matters of my blog, for example, link building outreach, guest post outreach, networking with bloggers, monetization etc.

Because I want to treat my blog as a business, not as a hobby.

Remember, this all begins with the keyword research we did above.

Each blog post should focus on one main target keyword which 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 (optional).

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.

  • Your blog posts should 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.

 

  • 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.

A QUICK CHECKLIST TO CONSIDER BEFORE WRITING YOUR BLOG POSTS.

  • Make your blog post conversational to make it engaging connect with your audience
  • Make sure your content flows naturally
  • Leave substantial white space to make it easy on the eyes
  • Add bullet points to help readers skim down the blog without missing anything critical
  • Use proper H2, H3, and H4 headings
  • Double-check for typos and grammatical errors – Grammarly is the best tool out there for this

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:

Next, you will head to the editor, where you can start writing your first blog post.
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)
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CREATE PRE-LAUNCH PAGES AND CONTENT.

Pre-launch content includes the content for static pages of the blog, such as About us, Contact, Home Page, and more. The nice thing is that the Page Editor looks exactly the same as the Post Editor.

The only major difference is that pages don’t have categories. However, they can be nested under parent pages to organize things.

Before launching a blog, you should have a few pages in your menu navigation so that readers know what your blog is about.

1. HOME PAGE.

We all know what a home page is – it’s the main URL of your website.
This page shouldn’t include every little detail about your site – its purpose is to sell your unique value proposition in two seconds or less. 

If readers hit your home page and don’t know exactly what your site is about, they may leave. A WordPress home page can be edited with a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) page builder like the free Elementor plugin.

A good home page contains:

  • A slider or hero image with a headline and subheadline
  • A small section to tell readers more about what your site is about
  • The main call-to-action like an email opt-in or button taking readers to an important page
  • Internal links to your important content

There aren’t any rules for home pages, so get acclimated with your landing page builder plugin and have fun with it.

2. ABOUT PAGE.

The About Page of your blog everything about you – who you are, what you stand for, and what your blog is about.
This section will help you connect with your readers on a deeper level so don’t hold back.

Make sure to cover the following in your “About” page:

  1. Who you are
  2. What made you start your blog
  3. Why did you select this particular niche
  4. What’s your aim with this blog
  5. Why should people listen to you
  6. How you dealt with the same struggles your audience has
  7. Your success story
  8. A call-to-action

When someone likes your content, they are likely to head to your About page to know more about you. Now, you can either bore them to death or turn them into your loyal fan.business.
People don’t want to read about all of your recent professional accomplishments, but want to truly understand who you are. So don’t try to make yourself look good – just write about your life and who you are.

2. THE CONTACT PAGE.

This page is all about sharing contact details with your blog visitors. You can share an email address, phone number, social media links, or a contact form on this page. This will help your readers get in touch with you.

3. WIDGETS – SIDEBARS, FOOTERS, AND BLOCKS.

These aren’t pages. However, your sidebar is a column that can appear on the right or the left side of your blog posts and pages. The sidebar is used to show blog categories, recent posts, ads, opt-in forms, and anything you want all of your readers to see.

This is considered a WordPress widget – and you can find these in your dashboard under Appearance – Widgets. The way I describe widgets is any place on your website that isn’t directly within page or post content.

So for example, your footer is a widget. Your blog sidebar is one as well. Even sections on the home page may be a widget. These are easy to edit and similar to the main page and post editors, just in a different location in your WordPress dashboard.

Are you ready to start blogging now? Get started with Bluehost for $2.95/month and get 63% off your hosting plan with my link below.
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11. PERFORM ONGOING GUEST POST OUTREACH AND LINK BUILDING.

Guest posting is one of the best ways to promote your blog. Google has been saying that guest posting is dead for the last 7 years, but it shows no signs of slowing down.

It’s a great way to build authority in your niche, meet other bloggers, founders, and content teams, get backlinks and create lasting relationships.
And link building is another fantastic way to build Domain Authority (DA) and increase your rankings.

This is a hustle and a grind that includes a ton of email outreach.

4. WRITING THE GUEST POST.

Once you receive the green light to start writing, keep these things in mind:

  1. Use Google Docs and format your posts properly.
  2. Follow the editorial guidelines closely.
  3. Use target keywords for SEO.
  4. Avoid grammatical mistakes.
  5. Add links to your website in the content and guest author bio.

Remember, writing keyword-focused, SEO-optimized posts isn’t enough. You need high-quality links to your content from reputable sites.
This guide is almost over. Get started blogging with Bluehost for $2.95/month at my link below:
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11- HOW TO START A BLOG: FAQS.

  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.

  1. 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

  1. 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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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:

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

  1. 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 14 months, I started making over $45k by scaling my blog processes.

  1. 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.

  1. 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 paid and unpaid). 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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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 like travel Payouts 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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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 50,000 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).
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Looking for someone who can write blog posts for you so that you can scale your blog?

Get started with Content Cucumber. Get unlimited content for a monthly flat fee.

 

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.

Umama Batool Qazi is a full-time Dentist, Blogger and Pinterest marketer having a keen interest in discovering new ways to reach more clients through Pinterest. Join me and other readers here at ubqdigitalmarketing.com to learn about blogging and digital marketing using our recommended resources.

 

Dental Marketing: 19 Free Social Media Tips for Dentists

Dental Marketing: 19 Free Social Media Tips for Dentists

Being a full-time dentist and learning social media marketing at the same time has unveiled the potential digital world have for dentists in terms of marketing, promotion and revenue generation.

Dentistry is expensive. Be it studying it as a student or opening up your own dental practice. Even getting dental treatment done can cost you a fortune.

Opening up a dental practice can cost you half a million dollars. This money can be arranged through banks.

But the bank does not arrange patients. SOCIAL MEDIA CAN….

In this article, I have covered how my fellow dentists can use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to promote their dental practices, drive-in more patients and thus earn more revenue.

I have jotted down some free and easy tips which you can follow on your own without hiring any social media advertiser or agency.

Dental Marketing: free social media posts for dentists

What Is Dental Marketing?

By dental marketing, I mean online dental marketing which is simply promoting your dental practice or clinic using social media platforms i.e. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn etc and Google Search Engine Optimization.

Why There Is A Need For Dental Marketing?

That’s a good question.

When starting out as a dentist you must have heard that,

“Oh Dentists!!! they earn a lot”

OR

“Dentists make a heck a lot of money” 

OR

“Dentist are richhhhh ”

But we all know, that’s not the case. It takes a lot of time, money and effort to get a private dental practice established and running (usually 5 to 10 years at least). More time to bring in the patients, to win their trust and to get known in the neighbourhood.

It (used to be) a Painstaking, Long and Slow journey.

Yes, you have read it right. IT USED TO BE

It doesn’t have to be that way anymore.

The question is how is that possible…….

Because this is a Dot Com era,  this is an era of Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube,

This is an era of social media which has disrupted the world of marketing and advertising.

It has introduced newer promotional strategies which are

  • simpler,
  • cheaper,
  • hyper-targeted,
  • more effective,
  • accessible to everyone
  • and can bring faster results

You just have to be smart … ……

Here are some stats for you.

Facebook is the most popular social networking platform right now There are 2.4 billion active monthly users.

Instagram has over 1 billion monthly active users with 500 million daily users and

Twitter has 500 million active users.

According to statistics, on average, each user spends 2 hours daily at minimum scrolling down their news feeds.

Yes, 2 HOURS !!!!!

Now here is our question.

  • How many people do you know who read newspapers for 2 hours daily?

                                                                       OR

  • You may know someone who keeps sitting listening to the radio for 2 hours?

                                                                       OR

  • Reading billboards on the road for 2hours.

the answer is NO ONE!

So, why not employ the mediums for advertising which are, way cheaper than banners, brochures, billboards, radio ads, newspaper ads etc.

Which are already in the hands of almost all of your prospective patients which they are using on a daily basis.

We have performed a brief survey of google listings and social media accounts dental clinics and found out that either dentists are not using social media at all.

                                                                        OR

Those who are using it, not utilizing it smartly. Most of them are making tiny mistakes which eventually pile up, making their social media platforms less useful.

So I decided to help you out………

What You Will Find In This Dental Marketing Blueprint?

social media tips for dentists

In this dental marketing blueprint I have provided some of the best, tested and free social media tips for dental practice owners which they can implement themselves without paying a single penny to any social media manager or consultant and 10X their income in few weeks by attracting more patients.

This how-to online dental marketing guide has been written for you,

If you are a Dentist and have your own private practice(s),

OR

You are a dentist who is working at somebody else’s clinic as an employee

OR

You aren’t a dentist but have a dental setup (clinic or a hospital) as an investor/partner or shareholder.

In one way or other, this blueprint is important for you if the income from any of the above source affects you.

If you follow these steps correctly, you will

  • Immediately improve your online presence,

  • Make your social media pages standout from the crowd,

  • Get more organic engagement (likes, shares and comments)

  • Improve your Google Search Engine Listing…… etc

Dental Marketing: Free Social Media Tips For Dentists

social media tips for dentists : dental marketing

There are tens of Social Networking Platforms out there. All of them are useful depending on what business you are in.

As a Dental Practice Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are Enough.

When you have mastered in these three, only then move to other lesser important ones.

NOTE: To avoid repetition, we have given general guidelines which are common to all platforms. Recommendations specific to any platform are markedly mentioned.

1- Get your Dental Practice Listed On Google For Free.

google logo : dental marketing

If you want your practice to appear in Google search results when someone searches for dental clinics in your city(area), do claim your clinic’s listing on Google.

Google does this for you for FREE.

In this way, people can easily see your clinic’s address, timings and contact number. They can post reviews as well.

It is the best way to boost your local presence and stand out of the crowd. here

Search for “Google My Business” on Google and follow the steps.

2- Setup Social Media Accounts For Your
Dental Practice On Facebook, Instagram And Twitter.

Facebook

You need to create a Facebook Fan Page for your Dental Clinic through your personal account.

Go to your Facebook’s Personal Account’s Home page.

Click CREATE (at top navigation bar) — Select PAGE.

Follow Facebook’s instructions.

facebook home screenshot

Twitter and Instagram:

Setup Two accounts on each Instagram and Twitter

One is your personal and Second is in the name of your practice.

NOTE: If you don’t own the practice and working as an employee use your personal account to promote dental practice.

3- What Should Be In Your Profile Photo And Cover Photo? 

profile photo and cover photo: free social media posts for dentists

Personal Account:

  • Profile Photo

This should be a closeup of your face, randomly shot, looking straight towards the camera.

Don’t forget to smile.

  • Cover Photo

You can add any picture, it is up to you.

Clinic’s Account:

  • Profile Photo:

For the clinic’s account, you can insert the logo of your clinic (You should have one), or you may add inside picture of your practice with YOU in it.

  • Cover Photo

For cover photo it is best to add:

  • Your clinic
  • Its waiting area
  • Video testimonials of patients
  • Brand story of your clinic etc

4- Write And Design Engaging Posts:

 

design engaging posts: social media tips for dentists

This is most interesting for those of you who think they are not creative and can never do graphic designing.

You will change your mindset after having a look at this website.

canva logo                                                                     www.canva.com

This website is MAGIC….

You can design whatever you want.

From Facebook, Instagram, Twitter posts to Ads, LinkedIn banners, Logos, Letterheads,  Business cards …. etc.

You name it and CANVA has it for you.

The website is self-explanatory. It has design tutorials. Go watch them. Play around a little and you will be startled by the hidden graphic designer in you.

5- Easy Way To Design A Post:

canva post designing software software

Speaking about your clinic’s social media accounts, we advise posting 3 to 4 times per week per account. That makes 9 to 12 good posts every 7 days. It can be a scary number for a Dentist, who has other important stuff on his/her hands as well.

So if you are very tight on time, here is the bonus tip.

  • Look for the good, epic and congruent content for posts
  • Make ONE Facebook post.
  • Resize the SAME post for Instagram and Twitter using Canva
  • Change colours if you want to.
  • Post it on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter simultaneously.

That means instead of 9 -12 new posts every week you simply have to make 3 or 4 per week.

6- Real Human Faces Sell:   

Nobody wants to open a Facebook page of a dental clinic and watch cartoons and zombies jumping around…. Do you???

Real Human Faces Sell…Avoid posting content having cartoons and animations.

Such features might work for other businesses but not for a health care practice serious to market their services.

That’s because cartoons and 3D videos are considered LIFELESS and LESS APPEALING.

Smiling human face looking straight to the camera will ALWAYS attract more followers.

That’s Human Psychology…!!!

7- Leverage The Power Of Videos:

man making video

Social media is one of the best ways to drive brand awareness, because even if only one of your fans or followers shares your content, you may be exposed to a whole new target audience.

Videos prove to be the most effective way to encourage sharing. They keep the user glued to screen for a while and transfer the message in a more efficient manner.

Video generates 1,200% more shares on social media than text and image combined. 

So what videos you can post

  • Record short videos during the procedure.
  • Record small post-treatment video clips and post on your social media pages. Videos with reviews improve your authority.
  • You can post fun content regarding dentistry on your pages as well. People want to see the lighter side of you.
  • Once you have a substantial following, try going live on Facebook once in a while. It might be a Q&A session with your followers. It has unique features for audience engagement, such as real-time commenting and live reactions that allow you and your viewers to interact.

8- Use Hashtags Wisely:

photo of hashtag

Nowadays hashtags are everywhere. You see them on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

  • Hashtags are useful as they can,
  • Expand your content reach,
  • Amplify your brand and products,
  • Get your content found,
  • Improve your SEO ranking etc.

Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post. We recommend you should insert a minimum of 10 hashtags per post.

Try to use a variety of hashtags. Don’t copy, paste and use the same hashtags every time.

Instagram especially tracks down your # and if you use the same #, again and again, it will push your post down in the news feed, less likely to be found and bring engagement.

Below are the two free websites which will help you generate # with one click and track their data.

www.hashtagify.me

www.all-hashtag.com

9- Optimize Your Hashtags on Instagram

optimizing instagram hashtags

First using the above-mentioned websites try to find the relevant hashtags.

Once you’ve found the selection of relevant hashtags, it’s important to consider the volume of posts for each one.

If a hashtag has too many posts and is too popular, your Instagram post will be buried amongst the masses in seconds; if a hashtag is too small then you likely won’t gain any engagement at all.
For a safe middle-ground, aim for hashtags with between 10k-200k posts. This should indicate that there’s some activity around the hashtag, but not so much that it will instantly drown out your content.

And once you’ve discovered your base hashtags, it’s also worth experimenting with a few high volumes and low volume hashtags in the mix.

Niche hashtags can often have a super loyal following while trending hashtags can give your content an instant boost. You can add a few popular ones, a few niche ones, and then keep the majority of your hashtags around the sweet spot of 10-200k.

When it comes to the right blend of hashtags, each business has its own unique formula. But with some trial and error, you’ll be able to discover exactly what works for your brand.

10-  Use The Website Link In The Bio Of Instagram And Twitter.

bio link of instagram and twitter

Instagram and Twitter both allow you to insert one link of any website or social media page in your bio section. It’s a clickable URL which can be used to promote your Clinic’s Pages.

What can you link to your Bio?

  • Link to your clinic’s website. That can be directed to the main landing page, to an offer, contact page, about page etc.
  • Link of your Clinic’s any other social media page.
  • Link to any specific Facebook post or video.

Keep changing the links often

In this way, you can drive your Instagram and Twitter followers to your Facebook page and Website.

11- What Is The Best Time To Post On Any Social Media Platform?

women holding a clock

Is there really the best time to post on social media?

Yes. The best time to post on social media is whenever your audience is most likely to see and engage with your content. A well-timed post can lead to more likes, comments, shares, and click-throughs.

Engagement on any post is Time Sensitive……

According to statistics, people usually check their social media feeds between 9 am to 5 pm. Try to post within this time.

Posting at 12 am-midnight will not bring you much value. Fewer people are awake at this time and even less are checking their news feed.

By 9 o’clock next morning when people have their phones in their hands your post will be pushed at the bottom of the newsfeed as it is older now hence less engagement will be seen.

12- What Are The Best Days To Post On Any Social Media Platform?

weekly calender

Several researches have been conducted. Weekdays are found to be the best days to post your content.

Instagram posts can show engagement on weekends as well.

So plan your posts accordingly. You can post at different times and days of the week and then see yourself when the most engagement happens. Then stick to that day and time.

13- What Should Be The Posting Frequency?

photo showing ecg lineWhy you should determine how often you should post. There are two reasons.

1- By posting less often people will forget you.

2- Posting more often will crowd the news feed of your followers with your posts. If the content is not useful you might start losing the followers.

There are many articles out there which can guide you about how often you should post. We have summarized how often any dental practice should post on their business page.

  • Facebook & Instagram: 3 to 4 times per week is enough.
  • Twitter: up to 3 to 5 times a day. You can post more if you want to.

14- What Is Post Congruency?

Please do not discuss Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and other political crap and local community issues on your Clinic’s Pages.

Better Stay Neutral.

You don’t want to piss off your followers /patients with your opinions and irrelevant posts.

Confine such content to your personal accounts. Post just dentistry related content on the business page. This is called Post Congruency

15- Engage With Your Audience.

social media engagementIt is vital to respond to every single person who shows any kind of activity on your clinic’s page.

Send a Thankyou message if they have liked any of your posts.

Reply back to their comments even if they have sent a single emoji.

If they have given a bad review for any reason, apologize publicly on the page.

Inbox them, call them to find out what the problem was. If it’s your fault, compensate it in the best way possible.

16- Engage With Other Social Media Influencers Of The Dental Profession.

social media influencer

A few dentists in your area, city and country are usually very renowned. They have nice flashy private practices. They are active on social media and have a very good following.

FILTER THEM OUT

It doesn’t matter if you don’t know them.

TRY TO LEARN FROM THEM

  • Follow them and their business accounts.
  • Show some activity on their pages. Like, comment and share their posts.
  • Look what content they are posting on their pages.
  • How are they interacting with their patients?
  • What deals or discounts they are offering.

Try to replicate what they are doing. 

To be successful you don’t always have to reinvent the wheel. You don’t always have to come up with something of your own. Watch closely and simply simulate the way others have gotten success. You will get it too.

 

17- Get Reviews And Testimonials From Your Patients.

Reviews and testimonials are considered social proof. They bring you credibility and authority. Such reviews and testimonials can be given by any of your happy patients but if you have any public figure, celebrity or any other renowned personality coming to your clinic.

CASH THIS OPPORTUNITY. SUCH PEOPLE ARE TRUSTED BY THE MASSES.

You can post your pictures with them at your clinic (of course with their permission),

Request them to post a review on your social media pages /Google.

You can record a short video with them while they are in your clinic asking for their opinion about your services.

18- Send Emails: Remind Your Patients That You Are Here.

image showing emails: dental office

Emails are considered the lifeline of any business. Try to build an email list of all of your patients. The question is what you can send to your email list.

  • Appointment reminders
  • Any new addition to your clinics’ services.
  • Offers. deals, discounts
  • Informative stuff e.g. blogs and videos about teeth whitening, flossing and brushing techniques etc.
  • Reviews and testimonials of patients.
  • Updates about your social media platforms (how many followers, the time when you are going live, the link of the post with highest engagement etc.)

REMEMBER: NEVER SEND SPAM TO YOUR EMAIL LIST

19- Special Tips For Dental Clinics Who Already Have A Website.

personal computer with screen on: dental social media

This section is for practices who already have a website or who are planning to have one in the near future. Make sure you or your web developer double check your website for following points.

  • Clinic’s Phone Number, Work hours and Address should be clearly mentioned on the home page, above the fold i.e. before scrolling.
  • Clinic’s address should be clickable i.e. it should be directly linked to Google Maps.
  • Make sure your website should be optimized for all devices i.e. mobile, desktop and tablets. It necessary as the majority of the people browse on other than desktop as well.
  • If you have a Facebook page, request your web developer to install Facebook pixel on your website.
  • Too much text, too small font size and odd colour combinations repel the visitor. Make sure your website is not making these mistakes.
  • Again no cartoons and 3D animations. Please.
  • Get your brand story made in video format by some professional videographer and embed on the home page of your website

Dental Marketing: Leveraging Paid Promotions and Advertisement

advertisement banner

Business Social Media accounts bring more engagement and revenue when the activity is controlled, wisely scheduled, and highly engaging.

Social media has the potential to increase revenue by 100-folds and beyond with very little investment and in a very short duration of time.

You can take help of paid advertising on Facebook, Instagram etc if you want to scale your clinic’s business quickly. Sponsored campaigns if ran wisely can bring amazing results.

This way you not only generate return but you can build an Email List which is considered as an essential asset for retargeting your previous patients through ads and email marketing.

Paid promotion may include, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter ads. Google PPC, native ads etc. Such ads are hyper-targeted which means these platforms allow you to focus on potential patients in your geographical location only.

You can run these ads by yourself as well. There are lots of blogs and tutorials on youtube etc. If you find it daunting, we are always here to help you out. Just write to us here and I will personally answer you in 2 to 3 business days.

Let’s Wrap it up:

Through my experience as a practising dentist and as a social media marketer, in this dental marketing guide, I have tried my best to provide my fellow dentists with the value which can help them to book more patients and increase their revenue fastly.

P.S: Do you know what If I could help you grow your health practice through social media marketing? Yeah, that’s right. I offer special consultancy services to help you advertise your health practice in your location using google and all popular social media platforms.

Our clients have seen tremendous results in 3 short months and have 10X their monthly revenues.

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.

Hope you have enjoyed this article. Don’t forget to leave a comment.

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.

Image Sources: All images have been taken from free sources i.e. Pixabay, Canva Pro and from Google search with the filter applied (labelled for reuse with modification)

Umama Batool Qazi: A Full-time Dentist, Social Media Marketer and Blogger. I write about books, work from home ideas and digital marketing. Join me and other readers here at ubqdigitalmarketing.com to learn how to start a blog and make money faster by using our recommended resources.

Reading List: 39 Best Life Changing Books To Read In 2020

Reading List: 39 Best Life Changing Books To Read In 2020

Today I want to share my reading list of the 39 best life-changing books which have helped me shape my life for 2020. I want the world to know how I came across books, adopted the reading habit, managed to read 39 books in 8 short months and made radical changes in my thinking, career and lifestyle.

main image of life changing books blog

 

I can’t agree with this phase enough.

        “To double your income, triple your rate of learning”

                                                                                                     Robin Sharma

I will not be sharing book summaries here. If you search with the title of “Life-Changing Books” you may easily find hundreds of book reviews on other blogs, Goodreads, Youtube, etc.

Here I am going to mention one to three lessons from each book which I picked up after completing it and implemented it in my life.

How did I get Into Reading?

If I give you a brief intro about myself. I am 29, a Postgraduate dental student, living on my stipend and my only career goals were to complete my post-graduation and then look for a job at some teaching hospital with a handsome salary so that I can stay in academics and keep practising dentistry at the same time.

As I was nearing the end of my fellowship I have found out that life is no bed of roses. Even after specialization, you have to work hard to earn good money due to worsening economic conditions

At that point, I stopped and thought that

Why some people make more money than others?

Why I have put my career in other people’s hand?

Why I will depend on a paycheck to pay my bills for my whole life?

Why can’t I work at my own hours?

Why do I have to ask my boss for sick leave?

Answer:

That’s because we have been sold the idea that jobs are safe and starting a business of your own involves a lot of risks.

We are told by our parents that work hard, get the best education so that the best companies can hire us.

We are scared to even think that that best education can be used to buy those best companies.

It’s just the difference of thinking in achieving the same thing and has hugely different outcomes.

I was going through some hard times in my life, faced a couple of emotional accidents back to back in a matter of weeks and one day I came across this TED Talk on my youtube feed by someone named Tai Lopez.

The title enticed me

Why I read a book a day (and why you should too): the law of 33%

This TED Talk had over 10 million views so I downloaded it to watch later but didn’t watch it for the next couple of days. And I soon I have watched it I got hooked to the talk, the guy and his approach and

    YES to the BOOKS. I just needed it so much at that point in my life.

I probably have watched it over 50 times to the point that I memorized it by heart. I can repeat every word and it has opened another new world of knowledge, wisdom, learning, thinking and change for me.

I SIMPLY GOT HOOKED TO BOOKS.

to the best life-changing books I have ever read. I read 39 non-fiction books straight for 8 months.

What those 8 months of dedicated reading did for me?

  • Gained a LOT of knowledge, wisdom and insights.
  • I never thought I will learn anything other than dentistry and I was not a computer geek but books persuaded me to learn other in-demand skills. So……
  • I learned Social Media Marketing and started my own social media marketing agency
  • that course put me on the course acquiring other skills e.g
    • Sales funnel building,
    • Web development,
    • Blogging,
    • Graphic designing
    • Copywriting
    • Affiliate Marketing etc

Reading has opened a whole new world of change for me.

These are the books, which changed me because Good Books  can be life-changing books as they have the potential to give you decades of experience in a few hours.

Books have the ability to collapse the timeline.

Readers are leaders and All great readers were avid readers.

The more I read, the humbler and resilient I have become.

All books are not equal. Every best seller is not worth reading. Fiction rarely gives you anything useful. So you have to be careful.

I made up my reading list after researching the great readers of our time i.e. Bill Gates, Tai Lopez. Oprah Winfrey. Warren Buffet. etc

Let’s move on to my reading list which I would recommend to every beginner. Every book has a lot to offer. I will share a few key practical, life-changing lessons which I picked up from every book, implemented it and the results I have reaped in my personality and in my life.

Let’s Move on.

Book Categories – Best Life Changing Books

I divide the books I read, into six categories. As I read mostly nonfiction, more or less every book falls into one of these categories. These are

  1. Biographies – Best to get courage from real-life examples
  2. Self Help–  About personality development and motivational
  3. Business and Entrepreneurship – about launching, running and managing small/ large businesses
  4. Wealth – about making and managing money
  5. Health – about being healthy
  6. Classics – at least over 50 years old book, which has stood the test of time

Biographies

1) Total Recall by Arnold Schwarzenegger

Total Recall book image : life changing books

Before reading this book I only knew Arnold Schwarzenegger as the Hero of “Terminator” but this book gave me a wonderful sneak peek into his life.

Arnold says that

                                                   IT’S ALL REPS AND SETS….

Whatever he has achieved in his life is due to practice, practice and practice. That’s it

If you want to achieve something in life you have to earn it work for it.

A lot of books teach us that but Arnold’s life is a real-life example.

  • He was born in a year of famine in a small Austrian town.
  • By age 21 he was living in Los Angeles and had been crowned Mr Universe.
  • Within ten years of moving to America, he has learned English, became the world’s greatest bodybuilder, earned his college degree and was a millionaire from his business enterprise.
  • Thirty-Six years after moving to America he was elected Governor of California, the seventh-largest economy in the world.

His biography contains a scanned image of his speech. The image has twenty-five vertical lines at the top.

Each line indicates the number of times he practised that speech before delivering it just because he didn’t want to make any mistake. He wanted to be perfect and that’s why he believed in repetition, repetition and repetition.

My take away:

Success is not accidental.

If you Work Hard and Act Smart for Something, you will achieve it.

If Arnold has done it, so can I

2) Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela

Book Preview: Long Walk to Freedom: reading list

It’s probably one of the most enthralling and emotional autobiographies one will ever read.

That’s because the vicissitudes Nelson Mandela has gone through in the course of his life are so dramatic that the reader cannot help responding to them as if to a fairy tale or moral fable of some kind.

No hero or legend ever went through such protracted trial in order to arrive at so improbable a victory.

Nelson Mandela had spent twenty-seven freaking years in prison. That’s three decades almost. Away from family, away from wife, away from kids only for his NATION, only to bring freedom to South Africa.

My take away:

When the cause is bigger, more effort is required to achieve it.

When the lives of millions of people are attached to you, more sacrifices are required.

Very few people have done that in history. Such people are chosen and their lives are a source of audacity for us.

3) Made in America by Sam Walton:

Made in America Book PreviewSam Walton founded the renowned Walmart. Started as a single dime store in a small town of Arkansas, Walmart is now the largest retailer in the world.

Sam Walton was declared the richest man in the world in the mid-1980s.

This biography is about entrepreneurship, and risk, and hard work, and knowing where you want to go and being willing to do what it takes to get there. And it’s a story about believing in your idea even when maybe some other folks don’t, and about sticking to your guns.

My Take away:

In the last chapter of his book, Sam mentioned ten points which I want to jot down as they are.

  • Commit to your business. Believe in it more then anybody else.

  • Share your profits with all your associates and treat them as partners. in turn, they will treat you as a partner and together you will all perform beyond your wildest expectations.

  • Motivate your partners, constantly day by day think of new and more interesting ways to motivate and challenge your partners. Don’t become too predictable.

  • Communicate; everything you possibly can to your partner. the more they know, the more they’ll understand.

  • Appreciate everything your associates do for the business. Nothing else can quite substitute for a few well-chosen, well-timed, sincere words of praise. They’re absolutely free and worth a fortune.

  • Celebrate your successes and find some humour in your failures. Don’t take yourself so seriously. Loosen up a little bit and everybody around you will loosen up. Have fun.

  • Listen to everyone in your company and figure out ways to get them talking.

  • Exceed your customers’ expectations. If you do they’ll come back over and over. Make good on all your mistakes and don’t make excuses – apologize.

  • Control your operations better than your competition. You can make a lot of different mistakes and still recover if you run an efficient operation. Or you can be brilliant and still go out of business if you are too inefficient.

  • Swim Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom. If everybody else is doing it one way there is a good chance you can find your niche by going in exactly the opposite direction.

4) Kon Tikki – Across the Pacific by Raft by Thor HayerdahlKon Tikki : Book Preview

Thor Heyerdahl, ethnologist and adventurer became known to the world when he organized and led famous Kon Tikki expedition in 1947 on a primitive balsa wood raft.

Heyerdahl and a small crew sailed from the pacific coast of South America to Polynesia, covered 4300 nautical miles in 101 days demonstrating the possibility that the Polynesians may have originated in South America.

My take away:

Very Engaging story. I have found it crazy at first that how few highly educated and learned man of their respective fields put their lives at stake just to prove a theory. But it has been done several times in history as well.

 

The pioneers of anything have to make sacrifices more than ordinary people. Only then they are remembered and acknowledged for their work.

 

This is the story of determination, science, human brains and teamwork.

5) Michael Jordan the life by Roland Lazenby

reading list

Michael Jordan is a legendary American Basketball player. This biography provides the first truly comprehensive portrait of Jordan: the player, the icon, and the man.

He says about himself

“My greatest skill was being teachable. I was like a sponge. Even if I thought my coaches were wrong, I tried to listen and learn something”

                                                                                     (Michael Jordan)

To his coaches, his capacity to be coached was his single most impressive attribute. His coach Dean Smith once asserted,

“I had never seen a player listen so closely to what the coaches said and then go and do it”

What I have learned:

Being teachable is a universal trait among all successful people which is often overlooked by us.

We think that our skills and physical gift elevate us above all.

We should listen and follow the experts of our field. It will not only reduce the chances of error but shortens the time to achieve success and fame.

Self-help / Personality Development:

6) Managing Oneself by Peter F Drucker

book image for managing oneself : life changing books

Its a very short just fifty-five pages, highly readable article published in Harvard Business Review. It’s the most precise and powerful text written on the subject of self-management.

Peter Drucker explains how to create your career path by knowing when to seize opportunities and when to change the course.

This is the only self-help book that I recommend if somebody ask for the recommendation of personality development book.

What strikes to me the most:

Peter Drucker talks about managing the second half of life by developing a second career or second major interest and developing it early and the prerequisite is to begin long before you enter it.

According to him, there are three ways to develop a second career.

  • The first is actually to start one. That may mean moving from one kind of organization to another or moving to different kinds of work altogether.
  • The second is to develop a parallel career.
  • The third is to become a social entrepreneur. Keep doing what you have been doing all along but spend less and less of your time on it and start doing another activity usually a nonprofit.

Only after reading this book, I concluded that I need to learn something other than dentistry as well.

The question was what that should be????

You are reading this blog because I picked up the lesson what Peter Drucker was trying to convey.

I have set up this website myself, written this blog and generating money by monetizing it

7) The 5 am Club by Robin Sharma.

book image for the 5 am club: reading list

                                                        “Own your Morning, Elevate your Life”

The concept of The 5 am Club has been introduced by Robin Sharma twenty years ago based on a revolutionary morning routine that has helped his clients maximize their productivity, activate their best health and bulletproof their serenity in this age of overwhelming complexity.

I always wanted to be an early riser but never had the guts to do so. Since May’2019 when I first completed this book I am a member of The Sacred 5 am Club.

This book has compelled me in some magical way to get out of bed before dawn.

Best thing I have picked up:
                                       The 20/20/20 Formula

There is a lot to discover and follow in this book. The one thing which has helped me to get on the journey of change is 20/20/20 formula.

 

   20 minutes exercise / 20 minutes meditation/ 20 minutes journaling = 60 minutes/1 hour

 

According to him, if you get your first hour the day right i.e. 5 am to 6 am, your whole day will be taken care of. And it’s 100 percent true.

8) The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz

Book Preview: The magic of thinking big : life changing books

In his seminal self-help masterpiece, Dr David Schwartz not only motivates and inspires, but he also gets to the very core of why thinking big will make you live big.

There is a lot to discuss in this book.

Few quotes which I liked are.
  • Upgrade your thinking: Think as important people think

  • Manage your environment: Go first class

  • Make it a rule to Seek advice from people who know

  • Want to make money? then Get the put service first attitude

 

9) The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson

Book Preview: The subtle art of not giving a fuck

“In life, we have a limited amount of fucks to give

So you must choose your fucks wisely”

In this generation defining-self help guide, Mark Manson shows us that the key to being stronger, happier people is to handle adversity better and stop trying to be “positive” all the time.

Lessons Learned:
  • Choose the things which I have to care about in life wisely as every problem doesn’t worth my energy. Few matters are supposed to be ignored.

  • To know my limitations in life and accept them.

10) The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma

Book Preview: The Monk Who Sold is Ferrari

Another good book by Robin Sharma. It’s an extraordinary tale providing a step by step approach to living with greater courage, balance, abundance and joy.

Few good lessons from the book
  • Discipline is built by consistently performing small acts of courage.
  • Respect your time it’s your most precious commodity.
  • Have the courage to say NO.
  • Savour the journey and live each day as your last.
  • Practice gratitude.

11) Compelling People: The Hidden Qualities That Makes Us Influential by John Neffinger and Matthew Kohut

Book Preview: Compelling People

When people size you up what do they see?

We would all like people to appreciate us for our own positive qualities.

This book offers a wealth of practical approaches for understanding and improving how each of us presents ourselves to the world. It’s required reading at Harvard business school.

Character judgments revolve around two qualities

  • Strength (the root of respect) and
  • Warmth (the root of affection).

The ability to project both strength and warmth at once is rare so rare that we celebrate elevates and envy those few people who manage it.

My take away:

Learn  to manage my image in front of people according to the situation.

12) Eat that Frog by Brian Tracy

Book Preview: Eat that Frog

There just is not enough time for everything on our to-do list- and there never will be. Successful people don’t try to do everything.

They learn to focus on the most important tasks and make sure those get done. They eat their frogs first.

Take away:   
  • Make a to-do list every day. This will help you think over what to do next.

  • Prioritize things according to importance level.

  • Delegate tasks to others which are not necessarily performed by you. This will help you focus on more important things.

13) The One Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan

Book preview: The One Thing

“If you chase two rabbits you will not catch either one”

(Russian Proverb)

Each of us wants fewer distractions. The daily barrage of emails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract us and stress us out.

And what’s the cost? Second rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paycheques, and fewer promotions – and lots of stress.

My take away

If I want more productivity from my work, more income for a better lifestyle. I have to find out my one thing that matters the most.

14) Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson

Book Preview: Who Moved My Cheese

It’s an amusing book that can be read and understood quickly by everyone who wants to succeed in these changing and unpredictable times.

This short story has a lot of great lessons
  • If you do not change, you become extinct so you should be open-minded enough to learn something new, act differently and adapt in time to help you succeed.

  • Smell the cheese (your environment) often so you know when it is getting old.
  • Move with the cheese and enjoy it i.e. don’t hate change.

15) The Leader Who Had No Title by Robin Sharma

Book Preview: The Leader Who Had No TitleAnother good life-changing book by Robin Sharma.

It’s a book full of inspiration, ideas and real-world tactics that will change the game for you. But mostly it’s a book about unleashing your inner leader- that big and bold and phenomenal part of you that’s full of courage excellence and honour.

Main Idea:

This book says that the old model of leadership is dead, gone and obsolete as the old model said that you need a title or a position to make a difference in this world.

But now every body can lead his/her life .You don’t need a title for that.

16) The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha

Book Preview: The Happiness Equation

Neil Pasricha, a famous blogger, in his book The Happiness Equation says that

“I am convinced that life is 10% what happens and 90% how I react to it.

My takeaway:

Watch out your reactions. We are incharge of our attitudes 

Business & Entrepreneurship:

17) Zero to One by Peter Theil

Book Preview: Zero to One

This book is very dense, crisply written, rational and practical.

The author Peter Theil co-founded PayPal and Palantir, made first outside investment in Facebook, funded companies like SpaceX and LinkedIn. He has built multiple spectacular companies.

He says that the next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t make a search engine. If you are copying these guys, you are not learning from them.

It’s easier to copy a model than to make something new: doing what we already know how to do takes the world from n to 1, adding more of something familiar.

Every new creation goes from 0 to 1. This book is about how to get there.

What I have learned from this book;

Few things which I liked the most are

  • When you start a small company and when you have limited resources. Don’t try to disrupt the market. Avoid competition as much as possible. Start small, dominate the niche and then scale up. 
  • Recruiting is a core competency for any company. It should never be outsourced.
  • Startups don’t need to pay high salaries to their employees because they can offer something better: part ownership of the company itself. Equity is the one form of compensation that can effectively orient people towards creating value in the future.

18) The Self-made Billionaire Effect: John Saviokla and Mitch Cohen

Book Preview: The Self made billionaire effect

In this one of the most exhaustive studies, the authors have researched self-made billionaires in an attempt to find common patterns.

What I particularly admire is their nuanced insights: these men and women are not solitary, risk-seeking, creative, overnight successes.

They work in teams; they manage risks and rewards; they are good at execution as they are at ideation; and they have been on the roller coaster, not rocket ships. Their wisdom is invaluable for entrepreneurs and managers

Lesson:

The authors have found one characteristic universally common among all self-made billionaires.

               They were focused, attentive and entirely present when spoken to.

I have now made it my habit to give my full attention to the person who is speaking to me.  

19) The Everything Store by Brad Stone

Book Preview: The Every Thing Store

This book tells the revelatory, no holds barred, true story of the global giant which has transformed retail in the same way Henry Ford revolutionized manufacturing. The fascinating journey from humble startup to the web’s biggest retailer demonstrates how Bezos’s determination to make his dream a reality has also, for better or for worse, changed the way we live our lives.

My take away

Jeff Bezos started Amazon as an online book store in 1996 when the internet was expensive, is not in reach of everyone and the idea of online shopping was considered alien.

But Bezos was ahead of the curve he saw what we couldn’t. He started early and persevered. Today he dominates the e-commerce industry and is one of the richest people in the world.

20) The Lean Startup by Eric Ries:

Book Preview: The Lean Startup

This book is about learning what your customers really want. It’s about testing your vision continuously, adapting and adjusting before it’s too late

Lesson:

The main concept presented by Eric Ries in this book is the idea of

Minimum Viable Product.

 

According to him when developing a new product one can start with a low quality , low functionality product which can make a sale. That Minimum Viable Product can act in service of building a great high-quality product according to customer reviews.

21) Contagious by Jonah Berger

Book Preview: ContagiousWhat makes things popular? And what is it that makes online content go viral?

Why do people talk about certain products and ideas more than others? And why are some stories and rumors more infectious?

In this book, Berger combines groundbreaking research with powerful stories and reveals the secret science behind word of mouth and social communication.

If you’ ever wondered why certain stories get shared, emails get forwarded or videos go viral. Contagious explain why, and shows how to make your product or idea catch on.

My takeaway:

Emotion drive people to take action. They make us laugh, shout, and cry and they make us talk, share and buy.

So rather than quoting statistics or providing information, we need to focus on feelings. To make things go viral or an idea to catch on try to stimulate appropriate emotions in people.

22) Start with Why by Simon Sinek:

Book Preview: Start With Why

This book is about the naturally occurring patterns, a way of thinking, acting and communicating that gives some leaders the ability to inspire those around them.

Although these “Natural Born Leaders” may have come into the world with a predisposition to inspire, the ability is not reserved for them exclusively.

We can all learn this pattern. We can all learn to lead.

My take away:

Though this whole book is a gem, there is one thing that was a totally new perspective of thinking for me. I would like to share it over here.

 

Simon Sinek writes,

 

“An arrow is just a flimsy stick of wood when hunting through the air, becomes a force only when it is moving fast in one direction

 

But what it has to do with finding your why?

 

Because before it can gain any power or achieve any impact an arrow must be pulled backward, 180 degrees away from the target and that’s also where a WHY derives its power.

 

The WHY does not come from looking ahead at what you want to achieve and figure out an appropriate strategy to get there. It is not born out of any market research. It does not come from interviews with costumers or even employees.

 

It comes from looking in the complete opposite direction from where you are now.

Finding why is a process of discovery, not of inventions.”

Wealth:

23) Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki

Book Preview: Rich Dad, Poor Dad

It is the first book I have ever read on financial literacy and money and it has challenged and changed the way I used to think about wealth.

My takeaways:

This book is dense and has a lot to offer. I have mentioned a few significant takeaways.

  • We have been sold the idea to play it safe, don’t take risks in life especially when it comes to finances. Robert says that nothing is risky. It’s just the lack of simple financial intelligence and literacy.
  • Know the difference between assets (bring money in the pocket) and liabilities (take money out of the pocket).
  • Keep your expenses low, reduce your liabilities and diligently build a base of solid assets and only then buy luxuries.
  • Rich people buy luxuries last.
  • Savings are used to create more money not to pay bills.

24) Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

Book Preview: Think and Grow Rich

There are no limitations to the mind except those we acknowledge.

Both poverty and riches are the offspring of thought.

It was the first life-changing book I have read about making money and acquiring riches.

This book is about thinking hard and acting smart.

Napolean Hill jots down 13 steps towards making money.

Few most important are

  • One must have the desire to get rich.

  • One must work hard to acquire specialized knowledge of the way to make money.

  • Write down how much money you want and how much time.

  • Persistence, Persistence and Persistence.

25) The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham

Book Preview: The Intelligent InvestorThe greatest investment advisor of the twentieth century, Benjamin Graham taught and inspired people worldwide.

Graham’s philosophy of “Value Investing”—which shields investors from substantial errors and teaches them to develop long term strategies—has made the intelligent investor the stock market bible ever since its original publication in 1949.

My take away:

It was a difficult book for a medical student like me. But it is recommended for everyone who wants to understand wealth management and investing.

Graham mentions that to invest successfully over a lifetime does not require a stratospheric IQ, unusual business insight or inside information.

What’s needed is a sound intellectual framework for making decisions and the ability to keep emotions from corroding that framework.

  • A stock is not just a ticker symbol or an electronic blip; it is an ownership interest in an actual business, with an underlying value that does not depend on its share price.

  • The market is a pendulum that forever swings between unsustainable optimism (which makes stock too expensive) and unjustified pessimism (which makes them too cheap). The intelligent investor is a realist who sells to optimists and buys from pessimists.

  • The future value of every investment is a function of its present price. the higher the price you pay, the lower your return will be. 

  • No matter how careful you are, the one risk no investor can ever eliminate is the risk of being wrong. only by insisting on what Graham called the “margin of safety”-never overpaying, no matter how exciting an investment seems to be –can you minimize your odds of error. 

  • The secret to your financial success is inside yourself.

    If you become a critical thinker who takes no Wall Street “facts” on faith, and you invest with patient confidence, you can take steady advantage of even the worst bear markets. by developing your discipline and courage your financial destiny. in the end, how your investments behave is much less important than how you behave

26) The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason

Book Preview: The Richest Man in Babylon

The richest man in Babylon is a modern-day classic on financial wisdom written by George S. Clason. It teaches the reader how to manoeuver personal wealth for maximum profit and to develop a deeper understanding of the world of finance.

My Lessons from the book:
  • To get rich you need to invest where you can earn a profit.

  • Take the advice from those who are experts.

  • Control expenditures

  • Don’t lose money.

  • Increase your ability to earn and generate multiple streams of income

27) Money: Master the Game. 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom by Tony Robbins

Book Preview: Money Master the game

In this book, Tony Robbins renders even the most complex financial concepts simple and actionable. He teaches us how to secure financial freedom for ourselves and our families.

It has a lot of information about different investment modes e.g. index funds, mutual funds, various retirement plans, equities, annuities.

At the end of the book, he has added his interviews with 150 of the world’s most successful investors, in which they have shared their lifetime experiences, their portfolios and investment strategies for common people.

Health:

28) Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us by Michael Moss

Book Preview: Salt, Sugar, Fat

Here, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Michael Moss exposes the practices of some of the most recognizable (and profitable) companies and the brands of the last half-century.

We are hooked on Salt, Sugar and Fat. These three simple ingredients are used by the major food companies to achieve the greatest allure for the lowest possible cost.

This is an eye-opening and explosive journey into the secretive world of the processed food industry that has changed the way I used to eat

Lesson:

Give up on all processed and packaged food. There are a lot of substitutes.

OR be ready for chronic diseases and never ending medical bills in your later age.

29) The Story of Human Body by Daniel Liebermann

Book Preview: The Story of Human Body

Human evolution is fun, interesting, and illuminating, and much of this book explores the amazing journey that created our bodies. He argues that our twenty-first-century lifestyles are out of sync with our Paleolithic bodies, and that is leading to trouble.

Lieberman’s message is that modern life has created a mismatch between our abilities and the stresses we place on our body by sitting down all day long and snatching at quick, high energy foods.

My takeaway:
  • It is okay to take a cold shower sometime.

  • It’s okay to walk barefoot sometimes.

  • We should be more physically active.

  • We should push and oblige ourselves to eat foods that promote health………Because we are evolved to do that.

30) Undoctored by William Davis

Book Preview: Undoctored

This book strikes at the core of what is systematically wrong with the healthcare system which offering a solution simplistic and achievable.

This groundbreaking thoroughly researched book reveals how millions of people are given dietary recommendations crafted by big businesses, are prescribed unnecessary medications, and undergo unwarranted procedures to feed revenue-hungry healthcare systems.

Undoctored is a guide on how to eliminate prescription medicine and how to distinguish good medical advice from bad.

What I have picked from this book.
  • I removed all grains from my diet including wheat. rye, barley, oat, sorghum, millet, rice, and their derivatives.

  • I gave up on milk and all dairy products except organic ghee.

  • I gave up everything which contains or is the source of artificial sugar.

  • I added vegetables and fruits in as much as the raw form as possible.

  • I added animal fats in my diet.

Classics:

31) Civilization and its Discontents by Sigmund Freud

Book Preview: Civilization and its DiscontentsThis book stands as a brilliant summary of the views on culture from a psychoanalytic perspective that Freud had been developing since the turn of the century.

It is both witness and tribute to the late theory of mind—the so-called structural theory, with its stress on aggression, indeed the death drive, as the pitiless adversary of Eros.

Civilization and Its Discontents is one of the last of Freud’s books, written in the decade before his death and first published in German in 1929. In this book, he states his views on the broad question of man’s place in the world, a place Freud defines in terms of ceaseless conflict between the individual’s quest for freedom and society’s demand for conformity.

Freud’s theme is that what works for civilization doesn’t necessarily work for the man. Man, by nature aggressive and egotistical, seeks self-satisfaction. But culture inhibits his instinctual drives. The result is pervasive and familiar guilt.

32) The Art of War by Sun Tzu

Book Preview: The Art of WarThe art of war is an enduring classic that holds a special place in the culture and history of East Asia. An ancient Chinese text on the philosophy and politics of warfare and military strategy.

The treatise was written in 6th century B.C by a warrior- philosopher now famous all over the world as Sun Tzu. It’s an ancient Chinese text on the philosophy and politics of warfare and military strategies, written by Sun Tzu.

My lesson:

Sun Tzu says

 “If you know the enemy and know yourself, your victory will not stand in doubt” 

Whenever you start a business, Always do competitive research and keep doing it if you want to stay in business. Always know what your competitors are doing.

33) The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

Book Preview: The Power of Positive Thinking

The Power of Positive Thinking is a simple, practical, heartfelt guide to enable everyone to enjoy confidence, success and joy.

What I have learned:

I have always been a positive person. But this book made me think more about it.

 

“The greatest discovery of my generation is that human being can alter their lines by altering their attitudes of mind”

                                                                                                            William James

34) The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli

Book Preview: The Prince

Written in 1515, The Prince is a treatise on politics. Although many critics condemn its power,  content and disparagingly called it Machiavellian, it is usually regarded as the first-ever work on modern political philosophy,

My favourite quote from the book

“A wise prince ought to observe some rules and never in peaceful time stand idle, but increase his resources with industry in such a way that they may be available to him in adversity so that if fortune changes it may find him prepared to resist her blow.”

 35) The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

Book Preview: The Old man and the sea

This short novel, already a modern classic, is the superbly told, tragic story of a Cuban fisherman in the Gulf Stream and the giant Marlin he kills and loses.

Lesson:

One might feel the story is dull and boring but that’s what makes it a classic. This story is about hope.

Knowing who you are, trusting yourself, seeing things from different perspectives yet not in a doubtful way, and giving it all you have got. That’s what I admire. That is what I found in this little book.

36) The Lessons of History by Will Durant

Book Preview: The lessons of History

The Lessons of history is the result of a lifetime of research from Pulitzer Prize-winning historians Will and Ariel Durant. It’s a concise survey of the culture and civilization of mankind.

The authors state that half of the history is guessing and rest is prejudice. History repeats itself, but only in the outline.

“You can’t fool all the people, all the time, but you can fool enough of them to rule a large country” (Lincoln)

Best lesson from the book:

The man who can manage men manage the men who can manage only things and the men who can manage money manage all.

 

If progress is real despite our whining, it is not because we are born by healthier, better or wiser than infants were I past, but because we are born to richer heritage, born on a higher level of that pedestal which the accumulation of knowledge and art raises as the ground and support of our being. .

 

When the heritage rises, and man rises in proportion as he receives it.

37) How to Win Friends and Influence PeopleBook Preview: How to win friends and influence peopleIt’s a self-help book, written in 1915 but considered a classic as Dale Carnegie’s time tested advice enables us to manage personal relationships more effectively.

What I have learned and implemented:
  • I try to remember people’s names and call them with their names with the correct pronunciation.

  • I smile often.

  • I avoid arguments as the best way to avoid arguments is not to fall into an argument

  • I listen to people.

  • If I am wrong, I admit it quickly and emphatically

38) As a man thinketh by James Allen

Book Preview: As a man thinketh

Millions of readers have experienced the power of this book. Published in 1902, its simple forthright ideas have touched hearts and even changed lives for more than a century.

Takeaway:

“As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he” – The Books of Proverbs (23:7)

 

Each of us is literally what we think, our character being the complete sum of all our thoughts.

39) From Poverty to Power by James Allen

Book Preview: From Poverty to power

It’s another classic by James Allen to attain riches by changing your mindset

How to read a book faster?

Tai Lopez suggests a way to read a book faster. He says most of the books have a lot of fluff and only one or two chapters are worth reading.

So my way of reading a book faster is inspired by Tai Lopez. I suggest reading biographies and classics slowly. Take time to absorb these books. The rest of the nonfiction books can be speed read.

Below is my speed reading strategy.

  1. Read the title and the book the jacket.
  2. Read the preface and look at the table of contents.
  3. Now read the first chapter and the last chapter. These two chapters will give you an idea of what the book is about.
  4. I next 5 to 10 minutes flipping through the pages, read any tables, infographics and anything written in heavy type. Try to pick 1 to 3 chapters which you can find most useful for yourself.
  5. You will get to know which chapters are worth reading in detail.
  6. Just pick those chapters and read them in detail
  7. In this way, you will be able to focus on the most important parts of that book and speed up your reading as well.

Recommended Books by Bill Gates: Best Life-Changing Books

Bill Gates with His Books

Bill gates is considered as a great reader of all time. According to him, he used to go on reading vacations. Where he spends time with books only. He runs his own blog Gates Notes where he discusses the books he has recently read.

But every December for the past couple of years, Gates shares a year-end list of his favorites. We have picked a few books through his blog which he recommends to read in 2020.

The five books on his end-of-year list will help you start 2020 on a good note.

  • “An American Marriage,” by Tayari Jones
    From Gates’ review: “Jones is such a good writer that you can’t help but empathize with Roy and Celestial. Both have been put into a super-difficult position. I obviously haven’t experienced what they go through, but the characters — and their reactions to the situation — ring true to me.”
  • “These Truths,” by Jill Lepore
    From Gates’ review: “While many good history books provide perspectives beyond those of the traditional “great men” of history, Lepore’s book makes diverse points of view central to the narrative. She shows you all the ironies and contradictions in American history.”
  • “Growth: From Microorganisms to Megacities,” by Vaclav Smil
    From Gates’ review: “Even if you don’t like math, don’t let [the first chapter] scare you off, because it makes a really important point: It destroys the idea that you can take an early growth curve for a particular development — the uptake of the smartphone, for example—and use it as the basis for predicting the future.”
  • “Prepared: What Kids Need for a Fulfilled Life,” by Diane Tavenner
    From Gates’ review: “Diane shares the story of how she designed a new kind of charter school with a simple but very ambitious goal: ‘We wanted to teach kids not just what they needed to get into college, but what they needed to live a good life.’”
  • “Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dream,” by Matthew Walker
    From Gates’ review: “I read a couple of great books this year about human behaviour, and this was one of the most interesting and profound. Everyone knows that a good night’s sleep is important — but what exactly counts as a good night’s sleep? And how do you make one happen? Walker has persuaded me to change my bedtime habits to up my chances.”

Best Book Clubs to Join in 2020:

old, antique books

(Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay)

Book clubs are the perfect way to keep reading, talk about what you’re reading, and make friends with other readers. And you don’t even have to leave your house to join one. Here are some of the most popular online book clubs to get you started.

Let’s Sum it up:

Books are your friend if you treat them as friends. Books are somebody’s lifetime of experience in a few hundred pages.

Books can help you achieve your goals by simulating the life of others and not repeating the mistakes which have already been done. Books are our mentors and they can connect us with the mentors who are no more alive.

So get started with my reading list and witness the change in your life and in the lives of people around you.

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Umama Batool Qazi: A Full-time Dentist, Pinterest manager and contributing columnist at Socialnomics. I write about books, work from home ideas and social media marketing. Join me and other readers here at ubqdigitalmarketing.com to learn how to start a blog and make money faster by using our recommended resources.