I wonder how many posts about starting a blog, start with “so you want to start a [insert niche] blog?”
Blogging is really fun, but it’s also kind of stressful, because let’s be honest, while you love food (or whatever you want to blog about) you’re in this to make a little money.
While you could use this article to start (and succeed) with any blogging niche, I’m going to focus on starting a food blog, because that’s how I started. I’ve been able to quit my job and blog full-time, so now I want to teach YOU my evil ways!
I view blogging for money as a simple formula:
Helping People + Your Passion + Monetize = Successful Blog!
Success means different things to everyone, BUT in my world with a wife (who likes nice things) and 2 growing little girls (who will eventually want nice things), money is important.
I’m lucky I can blog (and make money from) about topics that I’m passionate about, and you can too using my simple formula about combined with the 5 steps below.
The Five Steps To Starting and Monetizing A Food Blog
1.) Choosing Your Domain Name
You can make step 1 easy and fun OR time-consuming and distracting.
One of my first blogs took my about 4 weeks and HOURS to name. And I ended up naming it one of the first names I thought of, Eat Move Create.
My current health focused blog is Upgraded Health and that’s the THIRD (or forth) name. It’s actually not a big deal to change your domain name.
Once you’ve thought of some possible names, head to Bluehost to see if your domain name is available by entering it in the box that looks like this:
Once you’ve chosen your domain name, this will be your next screen:
If you’re just starting out, I suggest you choose “Starter Plan.” It is paid annually, BUT it will save you a lot of money in the long run. Next comes….HOSTING!
You’ll also need to host your domain name. Hosting is like renting space on the web to display your unique blog. Some people avoid hosting and use a WordPress, Wix, or Blogger platform, BUT this will hurt your SEO rankings, credibility, and uniqueness.
In other words, you NEED to host your blog.
Bluehost has great rates and gives you your domain name for free if you decide to host with them.
Here is a screenshot of what I use for package information settings.
3.) Installing WordPress
Once you’ve completed registration with Bluehost you’ll need to go through the process of installing WordPress.
WordPress is a blogging software. It’s the software that I use for upgradedhealth.net and this website, bloggingwithfunnels.com. It’s really easy to install (I’ll show you how). And that’s not the best part…
The best part about WordPress, it’s REALLY easy to use for your blogging, business, and it’s helped me look a lot smarter than I really am!
I won’t get into much detail in this post, but WordPress combined with ClickFunnels (my favorite online marketing tool E.V.E.R) are the reason I was able to quit my job and do this full-time.
Login to Bluehost and find the Website Builders section. Click on the WordPress logo.
It’s time to login! You’ll see this when you visit your login page, which usually looks like this: http://YOURDOMAIN.com/wp-admin or http://YOURDOMAIN.com/wp-login
Here’s what you’ll see.
You’ve officially logged into your blog. Now what? I mean YAY!
3B.) Setting Up Your Theme and Food Blog
The Epik Theme – This is my favorite WordPress Theme. I used itwithout any customization, and it looks awesome. I love it and highly recommend it.
The Genesis Framework – This is the current framework I’m using with my food website Upgraded Health and with this website. You’ll also want to look into the available StudioPress Themes, like the Foodie Theme.
Elegant Themes – I think Elegant Themes looks great, is easy to use, and has quite a few different options. It’s also a bit cheaper then the other premium themes listed here. Take a look and see what you think.
4.) Your First Post
You’ve chosen your domain, wisely hosted your blog with Bluehost, now you’re logged in staring at a WordPress dashboard that looks like this:
To start writing click “Add New Post” at the top left of your screen. Here’s where things get complicated.
I don’t mean technology, I mean with your brain…
“What should I post first?”
“Is anyone even going to see my post?”
“What am I doing, this was a mistake!”
Here’s my advice, coming from someone who’s written almost 500 blog posts. JUST. START. WRITING.
Your first post could be something like:
How XYZ blog will be different (because why will people read YOUR blog versus the MILLIONS of others?)
6 Reasons You Should Read My New Blog (because it’s important people know how they are getting value from you)
You get the idea. Now get to writing and comment with a link to your post and I’ll give you some feedback!
5.) Making Money With Your Blog
The next step is actually turning your passion into profit.
In order to turn your blog into a money making machine you need 3 things (aside from your content):
3.) An Offer
Clickfunnels makes making money from your blog easy and almost effortless.