Today, I wanted to share something that I am really excited about – blogging!
I know, I know…
I talk about blogging – A LOT.
I have for years.
Over the years, I have always tried to impress upon my readers why someone should be working with a blog.
Want to make money online in 2020?
Here's a full tutorial on how to start a blog in 2020!
You see, today as we are so early into 2020, I want to revisit this particular topic because lately many of my readers have been asking me all about how to start a wildly successful blog in 2020 😃
So let me start by prefacing this and saying that starting a blog may seem like a daunting task, but this quick and easy step-by-step post, will have you up and running in no time!
Some Background for You…
As many of you already know, Marie and I have never had a traditional job.
As we were finishing our college degrees, we discovered the internet and we've both been working full-time online ever since 2004.
In fact, by the time we finished our degrees, we had already built a thriving “work from home/internet lifestyle” business and were making 6-figures a year, there was no going back!
Since this was close to over 15 years ago now and a couple of kids later (wow – where does the time go) we have been building online businesses, have been top producers for affiliate marketing launches, named one of the best internet marketers online in the world by our peers, top reps for network marketing companies all by using the internet to market online and have sold hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in our own products and those of other companies (go read our About Us if you'd like to know more…)
That being said, if you've been with us from close to the beginning, as many of my readers have, you know that having a website and now blogs have always, always been an integral part of our business building strategy.
Hint: You need to create content to dominate online.
Write that tip down in your notes 🙂
A Shift In Focus
Over the last couple of years, we have made a shift in focus, and have moved away from blogging about our various businesses, to blogging more about our passions…
Imagine our surprise (as a couple who have always been steeped in internet marketing) that when we side shuffled out of our niche of “internet marketing” to concentrate more on the things we loved. We realized there was A LOT of money to be made by blogging about our passion!
And so the takeaway here is: You can absolutely go from making $0-$1000 blogging about your passion.
And once that first barrier of $1000/month is out of the way, and you become more adept at finding ways to monetizing your message, and there are so many different ways to do that which we'll get into in another blog post, it's “skies the limit” for your blogging income!
So Why Start Blog?
There has never been a better time in the history of the internet to start a blog.
Not only does a blog give you a platform to express your self and your thoughts (and there are some serious side-benefits to that), but as a marketer or someone who would like to make a living blogging, there has never been an easier time to do it.
Yup, that's right.
It doesn't matter what niche you are in.
The great thing about the internet is that it gives a voice to all these micro-communities.
There will always be someone who wants to hear from you and there are numerous ways to monetize your message. Monetizing this message is what creates a side income, or full-time income (working from home, or from anywhere in the world – but more about that in a bit!)
For us, our goal and why we built our business in the first place (even before our children) was to have the time freedom, location freedom and money freedom to live the exact life that we wanted.
And, looking back on the last 15 years (of both of us working from home, traveling when we want, homeschooling our kids and providing them with amazing experiences) we wouldn't have been able to have done all of the above, had we not built a business that allowed us to support those dreams.
Everything I am talking about here is possible for YOU, because we did – a couple of kids with absolutely zero experience, and to say that it changed the course of our entire lives is a gross understatement. It is ALL POSSIBLE if you have the heart and desire to do it, and it's the right fit for you!
And of course, working from home and now blogging about our passions, is just plain AWESOME!
So is there something that you love?
Something that you know well?
Great! Now, blog about it!
How To Get Started
Getting started with a profitable, money-making blog is incredibly easy…
You really only need 2 things to get started besides your idea.
I'm gonna list them out for you, okay? Drum-roll 🥁please!
A domain name costs about $10/year and hosting costs about $5 per month.
So for about $75 per year, you have a business that has the potential to produce a 6-figure (or greater) income in your first year online!
Heck, I'll even show you how to get a 100% FREE autoresponder once you get started. It's the “beginning” this journey that is the hardest part. (We have a free member-only community where we show you some training on how to do “blog stuff!”
So once you have your idea, your domain name, and your hosting, you've got everything you need to start building a thriving blogging business. That's all you need to get started with your brand new blogging business.
So want to start a wildly successful blog in 2020?
Here's the step-by-step…
What will your blog be about?
Your blog should start out with the main topic and about 3-4 highly related sub-topics. You don't have to write about all of them right now but you should have an idea of what they will be – of course, these are changeable.
When you get more and more comfortable writing your blog, you'll probably add more. As far as your topic, you should be somewhat knowledgeable about your subject or at least be passionate about it.
Step 1: How To Choose A Domain Name
So to choose a domain name, you need to know the topic of your blog.
Your blog topic will inform your domain name.
What's a domain name?
A domain name is simply what you type into the address bar to get to a site. For example, the domain name of this site is: AndrewMurrayHQ.com
Now that's a great name for a personal brand. So if you are not making a niche blog, that's a perfect domain to lockdown.
Another thing to consider when picking your domain name is your sub-topics – what are they going to be?
Sub-topics are topics related to your blog's broader topic, but a little more specific to your niche. It's a good idea to identify 3-4 sub-topics which should also help you determine what you want your domain name to be.
Once you have an idea of a domain name, now is the time to head over to the registrar.
The registrar is where you will buy your domain name.
After years and years online, NameCheap is my favorite place to buy all my domain names.
- They have fantastically quick support.
- They have inexpensive domain names
- They include PRIVACY for FREE if you continue to renew your domain name! (That saves you about $10/yr right there!)
And unlike GoDaddy, their non- .com domain names are still reasonably priced, and they don't try to attack you with upsells you don't need.
So once you get to the registrar, type in your idea of choice and see if it's available…
Go over to our favorite domain registrar here – we personally buy all of our domains here (and yes, for full disclosure, if you do happen to buy a domain name from here, we do get a small affiliate commission fro your purchase – thank you 🙏)
Don't worry. Once you get your blog, we'll show you tons of ways to make money from it, and also from multiple streams of affiliate commissions that you'll soon be getting on a regular basis.
You don't need anything other than the domain name from Namecheap.
Step 2: Configure your DNS:
Now in order to get your domain name ready for your hosting, you'll need to do one more thing in your account.
Go to the Domain Dashboard and click on “Manage” beside the domain you just purchased:
Next, under Custom DNS, type these 2 lines:
And then click the checkmark to save the changes.
Done! Nothing more to do in your Namecheap account!
Step 3: Get Your Hosting
So the next step is for you to get your hosting.
Hosting is your digital rental space. Much like a business must pay for a location and supplies, your hosting covers the bandwidth and digital space in the sky where you can set up your digital storefront or blog.
And picking the right host is important. There is a WIDE variety in terms of quality and support, and even the hardware involved at the source site.
This video will walk you through exactly how to do this:
I use and recommend A2 Hosting.
(You can click that link above and it will open in a new tab so you can continue this tutorial back here once you have completed that step.)
What business can you set up for so little and generate so much in income?
Look, we're going to show you step-by-step how to set up your blog for maximum results.
Next, you need to select a package.
Unless you plan to be super-ambitious and build multiple blogs, you can choose the LITE option to get started.
You want to use your own domain name. Generally speaking, you want a professional domain registrar with your domain and separate from your hosting. It's just good business practice.
Next, you will want to select the option to use your own domain name that you registered at Namecheap.
You don't need any of the add-ons on the checkout page.
You will be emailed your login info, and it will also display the login info on the page.
Be sure to take a note of the login details.
Personally, I use Lastpass to save all my passwords. I Highly recommend saving sanity in your online life of password management.
Step 4: Setup Your WordPress Platform
The next step is deciding what you want your blog to look like…
Do you have several blogs that you frequent? Do you like how they look?
If so think about whether you can emulate it, keeping in mind the main topics of your blog.
Personally we use, and recommend for you, that your blog be done using WordPress.
Watch this video:
So WordPress is essentially a database. What that means for you is that the “look” and “feel” is quite easy to change. So you can start creating content and worry about the look and style of your blog later.
Also, this makes applying global changes (like changing all the Headline fonts or adding some analytics code) extremely easy and intuitive.
Back in the day, Marie and I had to make changes on every..single..page of our site. Yeah, not nice!
So what is a theme?
A theme is a collection of stylistic characteristics controlling the layout, fonts and look.
Again, don't get hung up on the perfect look. The content is what makes you money, and the look can be changed easily at any point in the future very, very easily.
Inside WordPress, there are a few main concepts to understand.
The main thing is understanding pages and posts.
Pages are static pages on your site that make up the bones or structure of your site. Also, pages are stand-alone items, such as a “Thank You” page or an “Opt-in” page that are not your core article content.
Blog posts are organized by categories so that people can easily find the content that they are interested in. If you don't set up categories, your default category will be “uncategorized.”
Being WordPress, these are easy to adjust at any time, and if you create categories later on, you can move blog posts from uncategorized (or any category) to any other category with a simple click of the mouse.
For example, on our intermittent fasting blog, our posts are organized into the following categories:
- Science of Fasting
- Fasting Stories
You can have as many or few categories you want on your blog! I recommend about 6-8 as you don't want to scatter your focus on much more than that, IMO.
Posts are your “articles” or core content pieces on your site.
This is where the “money” is made.
Think of these are little content pieces. Each time you create a new post, you create the potential to generate recurring revenue on your business.
Anything you want to write about, that's a new blog post. If you're not sure, choose a post. Pages are more for “special occasions.”
I wanted to mention this area because “media” is where you store your images. You can link externally to images using a direct link, or you can upload images to your own site. It's ideal to upload them to your own site to help more people find you.
The default setting is to keep uploads in monthly and yearly folders. I actually find this setting annoying, especially if you are looking through backups and trying to find a particular image. I would recommend deselecting that option.
WordPress in 2019 made a change to the main area. The development is called Gutenberg, with a sly nod to the “revolutionary” Gutenberg Press invention in the printing world.
The difference is that now after each carriage return, you have a new block. This makes it easier to drag in special blocks, like a Video Block, for example, so you can easily embed a YouTube video. Or you can easily add a Quote block to automatically format the block into a quote, like the one below:
Now I know what you might be thinking…
Blogging and making a side income…sounds AMAZING but you're not sure if you can do it!
Oh no, what if you fail? What if it doesn't work.
I hear you. Hold on, grab a tea and don't panic….
Here are the TOP “Untrue” REASONS I HEAR FOR NOT BLOGGING…
Top Myths That Prevent People From Making Money By Blogging
#1. You don't know how to write…
Writing and blogging may seem really difficult but like most everything in life, writing just takes a little practice.
To put your mind at ease, a blog post is really like a simple outline, you determine what you want to write about, jot down a few key points, and then go from there. You can then pepper your posts with pictures and videos!
Now, wait, Andrew, I hear you saying… I'm not a good writer.
Bogus. That's a lame excuse.
Look, having a blog is not like going back to English class.
Examine this blog post. Short sentences. Simple words. Many paragraphs are just one line.
The key is organizing your thoughts into a short outline and it's easy.
In fact, we have a tutorial on how to do this even if you are CONVINCED you are never going to be a writer.
Plus, your blog is actually multimedia. Posts can be a summary of pictures or a YouTube video – and although it's best if you want to create your own videos, you can build an entire blog in any niche around OTHER PEOPLE's YouTube Videos!
#2. You don't know WHAT to write about…
If you are interested in creating extra money from your computer, blogging is the perfect solution.
Often times in order to find what you want to write about, all you need to do is determine where your mind goes, when you let it wander…
- What do you think about?
- What do you enjoy doing?
All of these questions will help you determine what you can blog about. Plus, when you figure this out, there are so many different ways to monetize your message, that people can literally write about anything and figure out the ways to monetize.
#3. You don't value your own knowledge…
This is a big one.
Often times, we know a lot about a particular subject but we still feel like we lack the knowledge to discuss it proficiently. Don't fall into that trap.
If you are passionate about a subject, write about it! We are always learning and as we share our experiences we learn more. Blog about your topic of choice, your knowledge I am sure at this point is sufficient and will grow! As Brian Tracy said about the winning edge, “Develop the winning edge; small differences in your performance can lead to large differences in your results.” I feel this way about knowledge – often times you just need to know 3% more than someone else to be able to speak from a place of authority – go out there and share your thoughts, you know enough – trust yourself that you have a voice worth sharing!!! 😊
#4. You don't know how to get eyes (traffic) on your blog…
There are so many strategies for getting traffic to your blog, many of them free. We will discuss this in-depth on another post!
In fact, we use various FREE ways to get eyes to our blog and you won't believe how powerful these methods are! Even if you've never blogged or successfully marketed yourself before, you can do this!
For more info, join our FREE blogging membership site!
#5. You don't know how to monetize your blog…
Nowadays there are SO MANY WAYS to monetize your blog. We are going to give you our top 5 ways to monetize your blog in the following post.
#6. I'm a very private person…
– You're not necessarily blogging about yourself.
For example, this blog is mainly about my niche of choice which is “internet marketing” but I do have others where I share my experiences on “Intermittent Fasting and Health” while Marie's is a lifestyle blog. She loves to share stories that document our everyday life, stories of our kids and what makes us happy. She loves sharing her deep and personal thoughts and that works for her!
So you're the BOSS, you do what makes you comfortable!
#7. Nothing has worked before…
Sadly, this is the experience of many people who come online to some “type” of business.
Coming from a couple who has built many different and successful businesses online, I can say blogging has been the easiest and most enjoyable, which I think is the point…
We love blogging.
And for the normal, average person we feel that everyone has a voice and something to share. With all of our years working from our computer, we have come to the conclusion that learning to monetize a passion of yours using by blogging is the most financially rewarding and personally fulfilling.
#8. You don't know where to start…
You start right here!
Re-read these instructions and follow them step by step – then join our FREE membership site.
Once you sign up to start blogging, our membership site will walk you through all the questions you'll have about getting this new, and profitable venture off the ground!
Our blogging series will help you get it all together – from creating the blog, figuring out what to write about, branding yourself, monetizing your blog and then getting traffic and eyes to your content!
So the key to understand is that the more narrow your focus, the better your results will be. And I understand this is completely counter-intuitive, but it's true.
The default thinking is that you want as much traffic as you can get, so you want to create a blog around a broad topic, like “making money” or “health.” But in truth, you start with “that” idea and then the more specific you get, the more traffic and more money you will make from your blog.
So here are some examples of great niches to build a blog around:
- Tech Reviews (I personally write a lot of these)
- Health and Fitness (I share my experiences on various health topics as well)
- Alternative Medicine (naturopathy, homeopathy, integrative medicine, supplements, different body modalities)
- Beauty and Fashion (DIY)
- Parenting (attachment)
- Education i.e Homeschooling (secular, non-secular, curriculum-based, unschooling, radical unschooling)
- Preschool education/early childhood education
- Relationship Advice
- DIY Projects
- Various Diets (Vegan, Intermittent Fasting, Etc.)
- Recipes (must be specific like Keto, low carb, vegan recipes)
- TV Show or Movie Reviews (or more niched like Documentary Reviews!)
- Gaming (think of a tight niche like Sports Gaming or FIFA, or games for kids.)
- Lifestyle (anything that you enjoy about your own life, think kitchen products, things you buy, things you enjoy doing, day to day activities etc…)
- Finances (saving money, retirement, getting out of debt)
- Interior Design and Staging
- Home Decor (DIY, Hacks)
- Anything to do with Real Estate
- Making Money Online (affiliate marketing, blogging, networking, selling)
- Travel (traveling, products used when traveling etc…)
The best thing is to really focus on a niche.
Now the other thing you want to avoid that could derail you is thinking too much. There is no perfect topic. You just need to start. The #1 reason people fail online is that they don't take action quickly enough.
Let me repeat that again… because it's so dang important.
The #1 reason people fail online is that they don't take action quickly enough.
It's better to get something done than to have done it perfectly. Imperfect action beats perfection every time. Every single time.
Look. You would not be here on this blog reading these words unless something has moved you to make a change in your life for the better. So don't forget that to change, you need to move away from the mold you are in right now!
It's crazy how easy it is to be a six-figure income blogger in 2020.
All you need is the commitment and the willingness to put in the time to blog about something that you ENJOY! 😉
The best part is:
- You can do it from home…
- You can write while you travel…
- You can write about what you're passionate about…
- You can write on your own schedule – around your current worklife, your family and your other responsibilities…
- You decide how to monetize your blog…
- You're the BOSS...
Plus, if you put in the work now, you can easily hire out all the content later on and not write a single word. But to start with, as I said before, you're going to have to make some changes in how you do things.
Heck, that's just an excuse. You can think on a morning commute, jot a couple of notes into Evernote, and have a blog post in 10-15 minutes. There is not a less time-intensive way to make money online… believe me!
Blogs are simply amazing. You should start one today!-Andrew Murray
See how easy that is?
So start here…
And once you're done, send us a message and we'll put you in our FREE Membership site.
Our FREE membership site is where you'll learn all the next steps to setting up and creating the perfect blog and blog posts, getting your blog seen and read, ways to monetize your message no matter what niche you're in and all the help and resources you'll need to build a wildly successful blog in 2020!
Can't wait to read what you have to say! 😊
And drop a line to us once you have your blog setup (follow the instructions above) so we can add you to our FREE Blog training Membership Area!