WordPress Blogging For Beginners
So today I’ve decided to write somewhat of a tutorial. A tutorial named blogging for beginners that will hopefully resolve some of your problems and answer the millions of questions I’ve been getting. If you’re anything like I was, you’re a complete beginner looking to start a successful blog. That was me 2 years ago. I was absolutely clueless, had no idea what a domain was, I didn’t know WordPress existed and I had never even heard of the term SEO. So if you’re new to the whole blogging thing and you’re looking to start a blog to enhance your business, keep reading.
Blogging is like an art, you can’t master it overnight. It’s not something you just get; it’s something you continually learn over the space of a few years. I actually got lucky by deciding to pay for a $200 blogging course. Anyway, here’s what to do if you’re looking to start a highly successful blog. I’m going to write down in steps practically everything you need. (If you already know something about blogging, stick around as there are still a few tips and tricks you’ll pick up on)
First of all, you need to setup your blog. You know, get a domain name, hosting account, install WordPress, configure plugins and all that. First, you need to find yourself a domain name (I use Godaddy). I really wouldn’t stress too much about the domain name. It just needs to memorable and relevant to whatever your blog’s about. Seriously, don’t spend a week trying to think of a catchy domain name. We’re not trying to start the next Facebook.
Once you have your domain, you need to host it, (I use HostGator) once done you need to install WordPress. Under no circumstances will I explain how to do that LOL; a few Google searches will do the trick. Just so you know, you have no option but to install WordPress. No other blogging platform compares to it. The next thing that’s worth talking about is the theme.
The theme is actually one of the most important elements to a successful blog. While I strongly believe in using a cool theme, there are plenty of highly successful blogs that are just ugly. But trust me, if you want your readers to stick around and return, pick a nice theme. I personally use a somewhat simple theme; it gives my blog a personal look. There are really two types of blog themes. Personal and commercial.
If you’re starting a blog for yourself, make it personal. With personal blogs, I like to keep things simple. A simple white theme, 2 columns. You can actually use however many columns and widgets you like, that stuff is up to you. If you’re starting a blog for a company or product, you might want to take a more professional approach. A magazine type theme works best.
The plugins, I’m not going to write another long paragraph on plugins as I’ve already written a full length post on the best WordPress plugins right here. Make sure you check out that post, there’s lots of cool plugins mentioned that will dramatically boost your blog’s traffic.
Once you’ve got your blog installed and your plugins configured, there’s just a couple of last onpage elements you need to take care of. Starting with the pages. Always add an about and contact page to your blog. Using one of the plugins I mentioned in that blog post, you’ll be able to instantly add a contact form without leaving your email address. (last time I left my email on this blog in the very beginning, I had like 50 daily emails, spam)
Final steps, for the final steps you need to select a few keywords for your home page. If you’re a marketer then you’ll want to do this. I personally don’t, but it’s a great way to rake in some extra traffic. Just find a few relevant keywords people are searching in your niche. Make sure they are the kind of keywords that people would search when they’re looking to buy whatever you’re selling. Then enter them within your blog’s title and description using All In One SEO.
Think long term for this part, you should try and rank for some crazy keywords as over the span of a couple of years, you can rank for anything. If you’re a total Internet dummy, when I say rank… I of course mean rank in the search engines. As that’s where bloggers generally get traffic from, the search engines.
Anyway, you should also change the default permalinks as I hate to say it but, I still see people making that vital mistake. Lastly for the behind the scenes stuff, add an opt in box. I’ll talk about this in a minute as it’s one of greatest ways to monetize your blog, but you need to do something within WordPress for this. Basically, you see the box at the top right of my blog asking for an email address? Well that’s called an opt in box and you can use one to build an email list.
If you’re a marketer, you’re going to want to install an opt in box on your blog. You’re going to need an autoresponder for this, I personally use Aweber, but there are a ton of alternatives. Just setup your form and use a text widget to place it in your blog’s sidebar. Once done, I believe your all set.
Now is the actual blogging part. Once your blog it up and ready for content, you should read things to think about before starting a blog. Just some helpful information there that’s totally relevant to what I’m about to say. When you start blogging, you need to keep blogging. I’d say blog at least 3 times a week in the early stages of your blog’s life. Later on you just need to update it like once a week. Just remember that the more you blog, the more traffic you’ll get.
I really want to make sure you to be consistent with this. If you write 1 article a day… Over the next 100 days you’ll be able to build a profit pulling, lead sucking and customer grabbing blog. Seriously, it’s not unrealistic to say you could be getting a few thousand daily visitors 100 days from now. All totally possible if you put your mind to it and be consistent.
I really have no formula for constructing amazing blog content. I just tell people to be themselves and to let their personalities shine through their content. So if you’re a deadbeat who has absolutely no personality, a blog really isn’t for you. One thing about blogging, you have to write promotional content. Promotional content meaning articles you write simply to gain traffic. Like this one right here, I’ll admit it. Although this post is really helpful and should answer a lot of questions I’ve been getting.
This post targets the term “Blogging For Beginners” which actually gets searched over 1000 times a month. While that’s not much traffic, it all adds up when you’re an avid blogger. I actually started writing this for the sake of helping some people out, but if there’s a keyword I can target, I go after it.
Also, once you build up your blog’s readership, write some cool content. Cool content is just content your readers will love and that probably won’t rank anywhere in the search engines. As once you have a readership, if you feed them high quality information they are far more likely to opt in and buy your stuff. It’s really as simple as that. Once you’re blogging and the content is getting posted on a weekly or daily basis, there’s one last thing.
The search engine optimization. Yah, it can be boring and all, but it’s a must. As without building high quality backlinks to your posts, no one will ever read them. You can read all about them here and here. I’m not going to write another essay on search engine optimization, so you’ll have to read my other posts. Basically, you’re competing with LOTS of other marketers. I’m talking millions of other marketers. So in order to outrank all the other sites and receive lots of free traffic, you need to build links to your blog posts.
Now that’s pretty much all there is to running a highly successful WordPress blog. Once you do everything mentioned in this article, you’ll be running an extremely lucrative blog (probably within the next 60 days). Most of you will probably give up after a few blog posts, but that’s ok. Some people aren’t cut out for this stuff, that’s why I suggest you read my post on things to consider before starting. So if I could give you one very serious, yet obvious word of advice. It would be consistency. While that’s the exact piece of advice you’ll hear from every other marketer on the Internet, hopefully you’ll listen this time. So commit to posting x amount of content every week for at least 100 days. I can promise that you’ll be better off 100 days from now. And if you stop half way through, just know that you’ve failed at life. Just kidding.
P.S. Feel free to leave your thoughts, comments and questions in the box below.
P.P.S. If you’d like to master blogging and and the art of online traffic generation, put your email in the form on the right.