You know, starting a blog is pretty easy. But it’s common that most of the people just jump into blogging without knowing anything about it (and start having troubles).
Even when I started blogging, I knew nothing! It took me months after starting my first blog to learn the basics. What I want to say is – when I was starting to blog, I wish I knew what I wanted. (I just started a blog and thought – what to do with it. That blog failed!)
It’s very common for people to start a blog, then get confused about what to do with it. (Sounds familiar?) You should avoid mistakes like these. This is one of the reasons why most blogs fail!
Before getting into the amazing world of blogging, you need to know many things about it. While it’s easy to learn as you work on your blog (and even be successful, in the end.). It’s better you know what you need to do from the start!
It will save you a lot of time (think of it as taking a shortcut). Rather than learning from hit & trial method, you can go & start blogging knowing all the important things.
Now, in this article, you will learn about 12 things which you need to know before starting your blogging career.
12 Things You Need To Know Before Starting A Blog
#1 Why you should Start a Blog?
The first thing you need to know is – why do you even want to start a blog? You just can’t start blogging (or anything) without knowing why do you want to do it.
While everyone has some reason why they want to blog. It’s important that you find your reason. This way – you will have a clear idea of what you want to do with your blog.
There are many reasons why people start a blog, some do blogging for fun while some treat it as a career choice. You can either start blogging in for earning some money or for just as a hobby. (We will talk about this in the next point.)
Whatever you do, before getting into blogging make sure you’ve known exactly why you’re going to do it. It’ll save you a lot of time.
#2 Blogging as a Hobby or Profession?
Now, like I said above – some people treat blogging as a hobby, while others treat it as a full-time profession.
There are two kinds of bloggers – The Hobbyist & The Serious One. By now, you would have known what each stands for. Still, I’d like to explain about both of them.
The Hobbyist Blogger – is the one who blogs just to make himself feel better. He just wants to enjoy blogging, he doesn’t care if anyone visits or doesn’t visit his blog (most of the time). This kind of blogger also doesn’t want to earn money from his blog.
The Serious Blogger – is the one who takes blogging very seriously (like as a career). His aim is to become a professional blogger. He wants that many people visit his blog, he gets some fame & also makes money from his blog.
You’ve to decide if you want to become a professional blogger or just blog just as a hobby!
#3 Blogging is Not Easy!
Sorry to say, blogging isn’t children’s game (harsh truth). There are many people who think that blogging is easy. But it is not. Why?
There are many reasons. Some of the reasons are – First, it takes a lot of time (you need to be damn patient). And second, there are a lot of bloggers and they are putting a lot of effort (more than 2 million blog posts are written every day).
Now, you shouldn’t be disappointed. You can still make a blog and become a great blogger. But it’ll not be easy (that’s for sure). It takes more than 5-6 months (on an average) to make the first income from a blog.
Blogging is a mix of skills. You need to know about many things like – SEO, content writing, making images for your blog posts, etc. It isn’t a get rich quick scheme. (Anyways! They never work.)
So, if you’re the kind of person – who doesn’t like to move his a** for doing any kind of work, stay away from blogging. You will never succeed!
#4 You’ve to do Proper Research.
Before you start to blog, it’s better for you to do a lot of research on blogging. Starting a blog without doing any research is like – you’re walking with your eyes closed. (You won’t know where you will fail!)
If you want to make your blog a success, then it’s important that you have a complete plan of action. You need to consider many things. (It’s damn important!)
Some of the things you need to consider are – What are your goals? What’s your blog topic? (We’ll talk about this in the next point.), Who are your competitors and how to spy on them? What’s the best blogging platform? etc.
You’ll also need to do proper keyword research before starting your blog. You can’t go unprepared (anywhere)! Having an average blogging plan is better than having nothing. Blogging is just like starting a new business – you need to plan everything!
#5 What’s your Blogging Niche?
This is the first (real) step that you need to take in order to start your blog. “Niche” means a topic about which you will be writing on your blog. It’s Importance?
Too Much! Your blog’s success depends on it. It’ll be much easier for you to blog when you know what to write about. It doesn’t matter if you’re blogging as a hobby or seriously. You need to know your niche (if you want visitors on your blog).
Many people (like I did at the start) start blogging and write about just any random topic. That isn’t good! Not writing on a single topic gets your blog nowhere.
It ain’t rocket science to find your niche. There are five steps involved in which you can find the best niche & it won’t take much time –
- Brainstorm about your topic.
- Check the size of your niche.
- Check the competition level.
- See if there’s earning potential.
- Finalize your decision.
I’ve made a complete guide which will help you in finding your blog’s niche. Without knowing what to blog about, you will get into a lot of trouble. (Personal Experience!)
#6 Which Blogging Platform will you use?
After you’ve decided your blog’s niche, you will need to decide which blogging platform you will use. Before we get further, you must know – What’s a blogging platform?
A blogging platform is a software that will be used by you – to publish your blog posts & make them appear on the internet. Nowadays, there are many CMS (Content Management System) by which you can make any kind of website (or blog).
There are two kinds of blogging platforms – Paid & Free! Each blogging platform has its pros & cons. Selecting the right blogging platform is important. Sure, you can migrate to other blogging platforms later but it’ll take time (and money).
Some of the top blogging platforms are – WordPress(.org), Wix, Joomla, Blogger, WordPress(.com), etc. Which blogging platform is the best for you, depends on your needs.
But, I suggest that you start your blog with WordPress(.org). It’s easy to make any kind of website using WordPress(.org). This blog is also built on WordPress(.org). (It’s self-hosted means you’ll need to pay for domain name & web hosting!)
#7 Selecting the right Domain Name & Web Hosting.
When you’ve decided on your blogging platform, you need to know – how to choose a good domain name & web hosting. (If you’re starting a self-hosted blog.) But, what’s a domain name & hosting? (If you don’t know already.)
A domain name is the URL of your blog i.e, your address on the web. If you want to make a professional blog then you need to purchase a great domain name. A good domain name is –
- Which is easy to remember.
- Which can be spelled easily.
- And, not long (i.e, short) & unique.
Also, you will need to buy web hosting to setup your blog. Investing in a quality web host is a must (or else your blog will have too much downtime). There are two kinds of web hosting – good & bad!
Some of the best web hosting companies are – SiteGround, Kinsta, CloudWays, DreamHost, WPX hosting, etc.
#8 Your blog must have a Good Design.
Most of the bloggers focus only on writing while ignoring one of the most important parts of their blog – its design. They only think if they write great content people will come and stay on their blog. But they’re Wrong!
Your blog’s design is the first thing that your readers see if they don’t like your blog’s design, they will not be interested in reading your blog post (for sure). Ask yourself, Have you ever stayed on a blog that looks like it started a decade ago?
Your answer would be a big “NO”. If you don’t have a good looking blog, even if people come to your blog, they won’t read anything as it would feel outdated. (Even if your content is damn great!)
Having a good design is good not just for your readers but also for SEO. According to research, done by Brian Dean of Backlinko shows – site’s with less bounce rate tend to rank higher in search engines.
When you choose “WordPress” as your blogging platform, it’s easy to change the design of your blogs. You just need to select the right WordPress theme for your blog. It isn’t a difficult task!
#9 Learning the basics of SEO.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. You should start learning about SEO before you start your blog. It’s the best way to drive traffic to your blog. (And is 100% Free!)
Without a doubt, the traffic you get from search engines is the Best! It converts better than traffic from any other source (maybe, except traffic from emails). You need to learn SEO if you want to become a great blogger.
There are tons of resources to learn about SEO (or anything). It’s better that you start learning about it ASAP! There are many reasons to learn SEO like – you will need to do it on your blog, you can become an SEO consultant (if you want to), etc. (It’s a skill which has high demand.)
Before starting your blog you should read SEO blogs like – Moz, Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Land to get some idea on What’s SEO & how to do it the right way.
You should start learning about SEO from today! It’ll be very good for you in the future. (You will not need to hire anyone for your blog’s SEO.)
#10 Writing Great Content!
How many times have you heard this phrase – “Content is King!”. Let me guess, a lot of times. It’s almost true (will talk about this in the next point), that you need to know to write amazing content to become a great blogger.
There would not be any blogger who is successful and doesn’t know how to write an inspiring (and great) content for his blog. But, becoming a great writer takes time and practice. (Just like any other skill.)
There’s also a difference between an average and a great blog posts. An average blog post can be written by anyone, it doesn’t need much effort. Where writing a great blog post is much difficult. (It requires skills to produce great content.)
A great blog content is that which inspires your readers to do something. It makes them feel that they have learnt something. When they willing to spend more time reading your blog posts, then you can assume you are becoming a good writer.
Just remember, you won’t become a good writer in some weeks (or months). It can take years!
#11 Getting Traffic to your Blog.
Only writing great content isn’t enough! What’s the point of writing amazing content if you can’t even get someone to read it? It will be just like you are writing for yourself (as you’ll be the only reader on your blog).
Without any traffic on your blog, you will not get any sales, subscribers or anything. In simple words – Getting traffic to your blog should be one of your top priority. There are many ways to get traffic to your blog.
Many new bloggers think – “I just need to write & publish great content on a daily basis, and my readers will find me on their own”. It’s the wrong approach! You need to promote your blog posts.
With millions of blog posts being published every day on the internet, the chances you have to get traffic this way are – close to ZERO! You can promote your blog posts through social networks, forums & ads. (Whichever way you like to promote them.)
Make sure, you are putting an effort into promoting your blog posts! Readers are the main reasons that make a blog successful.
#12 You’ve to be Genuine!
One of the things many bloggers forget before & after starting a blog is that – they don’t need to copy anyone else. You have to yourself! It’s the only way you can connect with your readers.
You can surely take ideas from somewhere else, but when you write you have to show that you’re a real person. You have to show your personality in writing. After all, it’s the only way for us bloggers to connect with our readers.
You should develop your own writing style, this way your readers will come to your blog again and again. Think of it, there will be hundreds of blogs (with the same content) in your niche. Why would your readers come to your blog?
Your unique writing style is one reason your readers come to your blog. But the main reason is – they trust you. Remember, it takes many years to build trust & just some minutes to break it.
If you can’t be genuine to your readers, then forget that you can succeed as a blogger!
There’s one more suggestion for you – don’t rush to start your blog (it might be tempting, but still.). Take your time, when you think it’s the right time. Only start when you’ve made up your mind (to put 100% effort).
Now, you know about all the things that you will need to know before starting your first blog. If you’ve decided that you want to start a blog (right now) there is a complete guide on it – How To Start A Blog The RIGHT Way [Beginners Guide].
If you want to know how to become a successful blogger, read this article – How To Become A Successful Blogger [ From Day One! ].
I have tried to cover all the things that you should know before starting a blog. In case, I missed something, feel free to let me know in the comments below.