With more than a billion active websites and blogs on the internet today, there are more than enough resources and guides on there on how to start a website or blog. The problem with the majority of these, is that they are either outdated, self-fulfilling and just trying to make money off a lead, or they simply don’t provide the value their audience is looking for.
Today I have a wonderful reference guide for you that is different from the rest.
Not only is there no fluff, it’s also loaded with great actionable content to help you build a blog, brand, and business for 2019.
I previously wrote a great resource on how to turn your blog into a profitable business, but what I didn’t cover in detail was the base structure and foundation for how to get there in the first place. That is what we are going to explore today.
Let’s get started and create something amazing!
1. Analyze Your Potential Niche and All Big Competitors
First things first: Plan out why you are launching a new website or blog, how it’s going to provide value to your audience, and also how it will make money.
These are all key metrics that you should know before getting started, as it will make the whole creation and promotion process a lot easier. To accomplish this, you need to analyze the competition and see what’s already working, how you can make it better, and discover who is the right audience.
To get started, ask yourself the following:
- Why am I creating a blog in the first place?
- How can I serve better value than the competition?
- What are the best long tail keywords to rank for?
- What is the best way to monetize my content?
Once you have answers to these questions, you can then start scanning through Google and searching for your competition and seeing what they are doing. You can also use tools like Google Trends, Ahrefs, SEMRush, Ubersuggest and other SEO analysis tools to give you an idea of where your blog and business idea should be headed.
2. Pick a Great Domain Name and Set Up Your Web Hosting
The domain name for your blog is important. Not just from a branding and SEO aspect, but also because you are going to be stuck with it for the life of your site. With that being said, take the time to research a good domain name and don’t just pick the first one that is available.
To get started, run a simple domain search and see what’s available. Anything simple and generic is going to be taken, but here are a few tips to help you out along the way.
- Stick with .com, .net, or .org — no one likes the other variations.
- Stay away from numbers and dashes in your domain name.
- Register your personal name if it’s available, even if just for future use.
- Make sure your domain is easy to spell and remember.
You may even decide to purchase a domain from its current owner. A decent com/net/org domain name could run up to a few hundred or even a few thousand dollars, but if it’s perfect for your business or blog idea, then it might very well be worth the initial investment.
When it comes to web hosting, don’t spend too long trying to understand how the complex world of web hosting works. Something as simple as a shared hosting plan with HostGator is more than fine. Should your site grow in size and need more features or server power, you can upgrade to a better plan at anytime.
3. Go Live with 3 to 7 Initial Articles on Your Site
“Content is king,” or so they say.
However, you need to remember that there are now more than a billion active websites and blogs on the internet today — all of which are creating new content and flooding the search results. This means more competition, and increased time, money and effort spent on ranking.
With this in mind, I want you to focus on only creating 3 to 7 different articles for your site when going live. These should be “pillar” content articles that are at least 1,800-2,000 words long and have real value. Also be sure that they are full of nice stats, authority references, data sheets or charts, and anything else you can include to make them look great.
If you are really willing to put the work in, I would recommend adding a nice video, infographic, or any other custom designs you can add in.
Remember, these should be relevant to whatever the purpose of your blog, brand, or business is, so you can reference them as a reliable source time and time again. We’ll get to the importance of all of this in the next section.
4. Start Promoting Your Content to the Masses
This is actually going to be the most important part of this whole process—and the potential deciding factor in the eventual success of your blog. Most people think it’s the content creation that will make your site, but it’s actually the promotion.
As I mentioned earlier, it’s best to go live with your site when you have around 3-7 articles live. Just make sure these are really great articles that you can reference to time and time again.
Now, when it comes to the actual promotion of the content on your site, you have a few options. I recommend you take a look at this content promotion expert roundup, that’s loaded up with a ton of ideas on how to effectively promote your content, many of which are free!
Some of the most effective methods include:
- Guest blogging on other relevant websites and blogs
- Using social profiles and platforms to grow backlinks
- Starting a podcast and interviewing other experts
- Creating custom infographics and submitting to directories
- Analyzing competitor sites and creating better content
- 404 broken link building and outreach to sites
As you can see, each of these methods are very unique, but also free. More than anything else, they will simply take your time and effort.
5. Further Explore Your Industry and Monetization Options
Jump forward a few weeks or months, and you should have everything above in place. Your site will likely also have some nice organic and social media traffic flowing to your site. With the focus on promoting just a handful of articles on your site, these should be creeping up in the search results daily as well.
Now it’s time to take a look at everything you have in place, and how to make it even better.
Beyond exploring different topics and reference guides you can create for your site, you should also be exploring new media mentions and link building options as well. Here are 70+ more ideas to start scaling in different directions.
Monetization is also a big focus now as well. With traffic flowing through your site, you can start testing different call to actions, affiliate offers, sales copy, and how your audience is reacting to your content.
To truly master the art of making money online with a website or blog, you need to put in the time to split test and find new improvements and opportunities daily. This is something that will take place during the life of your site.
Ready, Set… GO!
Exciting stuff, right? I always love creating new sites and projects, as you never know what they might lead to in the coming months and years.
No matter what your expertise is, how many sites you’ve created, or even if you’re a complete newbie… this is a simple five step formula that results in success time and time again.
Enough about me and my advice for creating something potentially life-changing and amazing. Now it’s time for YOU to take action and make things happen!