Welcome to our Ultimate Series on – How To Start a Blog. This is a very common question asked by many people, and starting a blog is NOT difficult as long as you have a guide to follow. Over the years I’ve worked with many clients walking them through the entire process, and learned there are few important steps you must follow no matter when or what your niche. Today, I’ll like to outline the steps broken down into 7 Parts, so it will be very easy for you to follow.
In Part 1, we’ll be looking at the importance of an idea, and choosing your domain name. They both are connected with each other so MUST be done at the same time. Your feedback, and opinion will be greatly appreciated.
Part 1 – Simple Idea and Choosing Your Domain
I personally think this is the MOST important step when starting your blog. You need to have a foundation which will help you flourish overtime. I recommend the “idea” you choose is your passion so you’ll continue to push forward even when there is NO monetary value involved. I’ll admit making money online is very difficult, and only your passion will keep pushing you to excel when all else fails. There are two ways you can approach narrowing down your idea.
First, you jump right in because money is of NO concern. Your writing because it’s your side business. Secondly, you research your niche finding high traffic keywords where it’ll be easier to build an audience. This will involve research like:
- Specific keyword selection
- Common problems within your niche so you can provide a solution
- Social media channels to promote content
- Communities where audience is hanging out
This method is more for those looking to create a business from their niche, and people normally consider this their primary source of income.
Action Step: It’s time to think about your idea, and what you can do online with it. For example, if your passionate about weight loss then you narrow down:
- What areas you want to discuss? (diet, working out, cardio)
- How you’ll be making money (advertising, e-books, other products)
- Where you’ll find information – library, online, digital books, etc
Keep in mind since your probably involved in something which you love you’ll have an abundance of information already available to you.
Choosing Your Domain
Here is where thing can get bit tricky because your going to want to find a name which is relevant, and easy for your visitors to remember. You will want to accomplish all of the above while choosing something which makes complete sense…right?
There are “3” steps involved when choosing your domain which I’ll discuss in sequence.
- A Relevant Name
You have to ensure your domain makes sense so when people type or read it they’ll know exactly what to expect. For example, if your niche is weight loss then the domains: weightloss.com, nutrition.com, cardio.com, weightlossdiets.com will all make sense. However a domain name: autodiet.com will NOT really make too much sense…right?
You might think this is hard, but all you have to do is think about your niche, and choose a general phrase which describes it best. Keep it as short as possible because this will just make it easier for people to remember.
Grab a paper and pen then start to brainstorm words which describe your niche. Keep narrowing until you find one you are happy with. I would enlist help from others to help me choose because they’ll provide a solid 3rd person point of view.
- Domain Registration and Extension
I recommend you choose a .COM domain because it’s universally known, and people type .COM compared to any other extension. In order for you to find what’s available, head over to ASmallOrange.com and search for your domain. Here’s a quick example using “weightlosstips4less”. I’ll type this keyword into the domain search, select the extension.COM and hit search.
You can see within the screenshot our domain name is available, and can be purchased for $15.00/yr. In the next section you’ll learn how you link your domain with hosting, but for now let’s cover domain registration. It’s important to mention you can register other domain extensions, but .COM domains are the most popular.
- Complete Registration
Once you have found a domain which is available, you can proceed with registration. Just follow through the steps until you have secured the domain. You’ll have other options during customization which I’ll discuss quickly.
First, you can select ID Protection which will hide your information from the public. Some people don’t want others to know who owns the domain. This will cost you an additional $7.00/yr. Next, you can add a promotional code (if applicable). Many hosting providers do provider coupons for new customers, but it will take some searching to find current discounts. Third, you can add additional products like hosting, website builder plans which I’ll discuss in the next section – Part 2.
Action Step: It’s time for you to brainstorm domain names, and choose one to register. This will ensure you have the right name for your blog and secure it before someone else takes it. Domain names are “1” per registration so once it’s been taken you’ll have to choose another one. Register it at A Small Orange then add hosting which you’ll learn in the next section.
In Part 2, we’ll be discussing choosing the right Hosting Plan for your blog. We’ll go over the various options you have, and web builder platforms. This will be an exciting Part 2 so stay tuned!
You can view all 7 steps in this series through the URLs below.