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How To Create A Profitable Blog

When I created my first blog, I was able to earn over $5000 in my very first month because I provided value. It was quite simple really, I found a problem on the Internet, I provided the solution on my blog and then I monetized it with affiliate offers.

Blog Basics

1. What’s your niche? What you are passionate about?

Most bloggers will tell you to blog about your passion, this is wrong, you should blog about a Profitable Passion or interest you have. If it was just simply your passion, I would be blogging about something ridiculous. Instead I blogged about web design because that is what I enjoyed and knew I could make money from. To give you a good idea of what niches make money, go to ClickBank and click Marketplace and any category they have, are niches that people are selling things in, for example, gaming, health, fitness, design, marketing etc.

2. Choosing the right domain name? How important it is?

There is no hard and fast rules to your choice of domain . The conventional rule is to use a keyword in your domain. For instance, if you write about pets, your choice of  domain name should probably include keyphrases such as “pets”, “dog” or “cat”.

However, keep in mind that most good domain names has long been taken so a combination of two or more keywords is recommended here. I currently register all my domain names with GoDaddy which is a very popular service among most website owners.

3. Hosting Your Website On The Internet

Once you’ve registered a domain name you can call your own, the next course of action is buy yourself a reliable hosting provider. We have partnered with one of the best and most reputable hosting provider in the industry – HostGator which gives you the right hosting package with superb support system at the most affordable price.

4. Change your DNS (domain name server)

What comes next is to point your domain to HostGator of which the whole process is actually quite simple and takes only a minute to do.

5. Blog setup is as easy as 1-2-3

Installing WordPress isn’t as difficult as what other make you think. A neat little script called Fantastico makes setting up a blog as simple as pie. No real technical knowledge of required.

Search online for “1 Click WordPress Install Using cPanel”.

6. Tell the world who you are with “About Me” page

Anonymity is the privilege and the fun part of blogging. But your readers deserves the right to know who is talking to them and whom they will be talking to. In such an impersonal world of blogging, a little introduction about you makes it more personal and improve your credibility as a blogger. What you want to reveal is really up to you but just don’t hide behind the mask of your blog.

Blog Optimization

1. Your choice of WordPress theme makes a difference.

I’m subscribed to the notion that “First Impression Counts”. If you can’t convince your visitors to stay engaged in the first one minute or so, you’ll probably not gonna be seeing them again.

Personally, we use a ThemeForest for a few of our sites, they have FREE and Paid Themes, obviously the paid ones are better, setting you back $70 for two themes. We personally use the Headlines Theme for this site and BusyBee for IncomeDiary.com.

Installing your theme is easy, once you have downloaded it from Woothemes, go to your WordPress Admin, click Themes > Upload > Upload Zip File and Activate!

2. What are the top 10 indispensable WordPress plug-ins?

What is a plug-in? In layman term, it’s an external code that add a specific function to expand the functionality of your blog. With plug-ins, you can practically do almost anything you can imagine to your blog.

Though WordPress works right out of the box, a plug-in help to optimize your blog and it’s for this very reason, WordPress has been the preferred choice of blogging platform for most bloggers.

Due to a plethora of plugins, it’s also important to keep in mind that your choice plug-ins should be ones that best serve your blogging needs. Here’s a checklist of 10 post-install plugins you ought to install right after the initial setup.

3. Google tools are your best blogging friends


I can’t say enough how indispensable tools like Google Webmaster Tools and  Google Analytics to track the performance of your blog. While the core functions of both tools are primarily to improve your SERP (aka: Search Engine Results Position). Each has its own specific uses you can’t do without. If you don’t please Google

4. Setup RSS & Email subscription

Despite what you are blogging for, your ultimate goal of everything you do is to drive traffic to your site and convince your visitors to subscribe (read: follow) your blog.

The most common  approach to facilitate the process is to register your blog with Feedburner which is a 3rd party application designed to easily manage your RSS subscription and simplify the process of subscribing with just “one easy click”.

Nothing can be any easier than that. However, from my own personal blogging experience, you also need to take into account the non-techy visitors who are know little about RSS. Hence an alternative in the form of email subscription may be a good complimentary option. Most internet markets choose to use a service called Aweber so they can have full controle over their email list.

5. Check browser compatibility

Unless you are getting the right premium themes from reputable theme developer i.e. Thesis [insert your affiliate link]  theme, some of the code of those freely available themes may not be compatible across major browsers, IE in particular.

A nifty online tool – IE NetRenderer allows you to check how your site is viewed by Internet Explorer 8, 7, 6 or 5.5 and it’s completely free!

SEO

1. Submit to Google

Despite what others think that it’s no longer necessary, personally I think submitting your blog to Google index is still worth the effort. Google is indexing and updating billion of pages every day, a little knock at its door does not do your blog any harm, does it?

After all, what have you got to lose to submit your site that will only take less than a minute. Here’s where you can do it.

2. Don’t ignore Permalink structure

More often than not, this is one of the most important, yet overlooked things to do right after the initial bog setup. If it isn’t in your post install checklist yet, ignoring it has detrimental effect to your search engine visibility.

3. Write for both your readers and search engines

Here I’m referring to your choice of post title. A careful choice of title with the proper keyword research is part and parcel of your SEO (aka; search engine optimization) effort. Speaking of which, not only you should write for both search engine and more important, your readers.

Basically, your post title is what your readers will see while the blog title is what the search engines robots view.

4. Create robot.txt file – What is robot.txt file?

Basically the purpose of creating a robots.txt file is to improve site indexation by telling search engine crawler to only index your content pages and to ignore other pages (i.e. monthly archives, categories folders or your admin files) that you do not want them to appear on the search index lest it leads to the problem of duplicate content.

In layman term, it means that you can’t have two or more pages with the same content words for words. Google will just ignore the duplicate contents and not list them in the index. If your blog is new, the last thing you’ll ever need is not to be in Google whitelist, so to speak.

5. Create a Sitemap – What is a Sitemap?

While Robots.txt instructs search engines which parts of your site to exclude from indexing, a Sitemap tells search engines where you’d like them to go. From a search engine perspective, sitemap is useful for better and faster indexing while a plain HTML sitemap with the use of plug-in provides ease of navigation for your visitors.

  1. For Search Engines – If you are on WordPress, install Google (XML) Sitemaps Generator which will generate XML-Sitemap supported by most of the search engines.
  2. For Your Visitors – Clean Archives Reloaded generates a list of your posts sorted by months for better navigation.

6. Update “Ping” list

What is ‘Ping’? Pinging is a built-in notification system ‘pinging’ the search or directory engines every time you post a new article on your blog to get the search engines to visit your site more often, thus improve indexation.

Below are the list of ping services that I use

  • http://rpc.pingomatic.com/
  • http://pingoat.com/goat/RPC2/
  • http://pingqueue.com/rpc/
  • http://ping.feedburner.com
  • http://www.bloglines.com/ping
  • http://blogsearch.google.com/ping/RPC2
  • http://rpc.technorati.com/rpc/ping
  • http://api.my.yahoo.com/RPC2
  • http://api.my.yahoo.com/rss/ping

For more details ping services , here’s A Complete List of Ping Services for your reference.

Blog Promotion

1.Blog Commenting

I’m a big proponent of blog commenting. What you basically do here to find any blog that’s is closely relevant too your niche where you can add your constructive opinions on the subject being discussed via commenting.

It’s one of the most powerful yet the least expensive tool to create awareness especially when you are new in the community. No other blog promotion can be as effective as commenting, no question about it.

2. Article Marketing

This is one method that I’ve found great success with. Not only it’s an effective strategy for link building (Google loves more links pointing back to your site), one article of yours will be published in one hundred, if not thousands of other sites, depending on the quality of your article. If writing is in your greatest asset, nothing beats article marketing if you ask me.

3. Guest Blogging


Guest blogging isn’t a new phenomenon. It’s the common practice where bloggers write article to be published on other bloggers’ blogs. If done right with a reputable host, you’ll not only see an increased in your blog traffic and gain a few extra subscribers.

With guest blogging, not only will the host’s blog receive new fresh content from a different perspective, the guest blogger will gain a link and the all important exposure.

4. Use of Social Sites

Well, I’m not fond of social sites but the recent buzz of using Tweeter to promote your product and services deserves a certain degree of recognition and I think it’s pretty fair that I make an effort to promote the use of it to a certain extent.

If you are not into yet, you’ll never know what you’re missing. Mind ya, it can be addictive. The use of it shouldn’t be at the expense of other promotional strategies such as Twitter or Stumble Upon.

5. Forum Marketing

Marketing your site in forums is worthy of a mention too. Though it might take quite a bit of you time to partake and join the forum discussion, it’s still one of the promotional method widely used by the majority of new bloggers.

One common approach is to insert your links in your signature so that whenever you make any post, there is a likelihood of clicks from other forum posters. The success of forum marketing varied and certainly depend on the kind of niche you are in and how eye-catching your link signature is.

Make Money Online

1. Google AdSense

Google Adsense is the bread and butter of most bloggers. It’s the plug-n-play advertising program you can easily run on your new blog without much effort. Though it’s the preferred choice of blog monetization, please keep in mind that without traffic which is usually low in when your blog is new, your earnings from Adsense could be pretty minimal. Its earnings is pretty much relied upon the kind of traffic you can drive to your site.

2. Affiliate Sales

With that being said above, the next best option is learn and explore the art of affiliate marketing. In simple term, affiliate marketing is about promoting someone’s else products where you’ll be paid for every referral sale. Depending on the products, you are referring, the referral commission can be as high as a few hundred dollars.

If you are looking for products and eBooks to sell on commission I would recommended Clickbank and Amazon Associates Program.

3. Sponsored Reviews

To touch upon what I’ve mentioned above earlier, if writing is in your blood and copywriting is your forte, doing a review for someone else’s product or services can be one lucrative source of income. All you need to do is to write an honest review and offer constructive criticism and you’ll get paid for it.

4. Freelance Services

Now those of you who have the skills for say, design, coding or  copywriting for that matter, I’d recommend to learn how to leverage your blog to showcase your portfolios. I’ve seen how others are successful using their blog to sell their service and earn a decent income out of it.

5. Private Advertising

Last but not the least, though it’s one method I’m not advocating when your blog is new is private advertising where usually advertisers are willing to buy an ad space on your blog.

However advertisers are smart of investors who are only willing to spend the kind of money in a blog with a decent traffic and certain rankings. There are various metrics advertisers are concerned about, among them are the no. of your subscribers, PageRank, traffic stats and just to name a few.

If you don’t have any of those yet, this option is certainly one that you shouldn’t think about in the beginning. Instead first focus on building traffic and social networking and advertising opportunities comes naturally thereafter.

Final Thought

Setting up a blog is the easy part, what comes next is a different ball game altogether. It takes a lot of commitment, patience, technical know-hows and most importantly, the passion to see you through the ups and downs of blogging.

The above “”How To” guide isn’t the ultimate guide to make money online from the get go but the awareness of the above know-hows is the prerequisites to building a successful blog and bringing you one step closer to your dreams of making money online from your blog.