How do I make money online from a blog? Is that really possible or it’s a scam. Well, if I can do that for years, I believe you will also be able to create a passive income source by starting a blog in 2020. Let’s get started with this massive guide.
Blogging is no more fun or hobby. When I have started my first blog in 2008, my intention was to share recipes as a time pass activity. By the way, it was a recipe blog, which I & my wife Manidipa started on Google Blogger platform.
But in 2019, the meaning of blogging is totally different. You can actually get your desired life by pursuing a career in blogging. You can become financially free, free from the typical life of a 9-5 day job, travel the world, quit your 9 to 5 job, get early retirement. In short, be your own boss. I am not bluffing here, many people actually living their dream life by starting a blog already.
Yes, blogging is one of the legitimate ways to earn money online. You don’t have to get trapped in any make money online scams or any data entry jobs. Making money from a blog is quite popular these days and this “learn how to start a blog in 2020 guide” will help you to get this goal.
How much money can you make from a blog?
But how to make money doing blogs? Simply start your blog in 2020 following this guide and start making money. But before starting this complete step by step guide, I want to show you some real proof of our income from different blogs through different monetizing techniques.
This is the screenshot of my Shareasale income report last year. As I am promoting a couple of products from Shareasale, you can see that few months I made a very good amount of commission and few months were just average.
You can create an Amazon Affiliate website and easily generate income by recommending good products to people who are looking for product reviews. I have created an Amazon affiliates site based out of Indian traffic and make some money fro that. Just check out the screenshot below.
Affiliate marketing is amazing and you can make huge income from your blog if you know how to do affiliate income. Here is the screenshot of one of the products that I am promoting through my blog.
I know this is not a very big amount. But my intention here is to motivate you to share the potential of blogging & affiliate marketing. If I can generate a decent income besides working full-time for my day job, then why can’t you make even more if pursue blogging as a full-time career option?
Should I Buy A Blogging Course?
Well, I am not against any blogging courses. As the intention behind the courses is very clear. As blogging is huge and as a beginner, you don’t know where to start & what to learn, then a course will help you to explore everything in one place and in a sequential manner.
Personally, I don’t prefer buying any courses. I always love to read case studies, popular blogs, successful stories of bloggers and how exactly they grew in life. If you follow a few popular blogs and followed their journey of starting a blog, then you will actually learn many practical tips.
As a beginner, if you need the initial kick then this How To Start A Blog in 2020 guide will definitely answer a lot of questions and provide a perfect path to start your blogging journey.
You don’t have to spend money on paid blogging courses to learn how to start a blog. As my website has every single information to help you to be a better blogger. I have crafted this article with all necessary supporting topics so that you can enough information to create your first website on WordPress. In case you have any further doubts after that also, you can always connect me on my Facebook Group, The Bloggers’ Team.
How Much Does It Cost To Start A WordPress Blog in 2020
Well, this guide is all about setting up a self-hosted WordPress blog. There are lots of doubts or debate on whether to choose Blogger or WordPress. To make it simple & clear, I always choose WordPress when my blogging plan is serious. For experimental purposes, I often create a free blog on Blogger also.
But this guide is only for them, who are serious enough to create a successful blog that will generate income through different ways in the next 6-12 months duration. So, to explain this point, I would request you to watch the video where I have explained the different costs involved in blogging.
You might be thinking, how much I have spent to set up this blog? I believe in investment as without investment one can’t grow the business. I have spent heavily to create a fast loading website with better user experience & readability.
- SiteGround GoGeek Hosting [$288 for next 2 years]
- Authority Pro Theme [$129 with Genesis Framework]
- Thrive Leads For Lead Capture [$67 for 1 Site]
Besides that, I also invested in multiple tools & hosting (E.g. FastComet Hosting) for my other blogs. E.g. Social Snap Plugin, WP Coupon And Deals, WPCoupons.IO plugin, etc.
Complete 2020 Blogging Guide For Beginners (Step By Step)
Right now, by following my 7-step guide you can set up your blog on WordPress in the next 10 minutes max. I am going to share the exact techniques about how to start a blog today
Let’s have a quick look at my 7-step process to start a blog in 2020 from scratch.
- Step #1: How do I choose a profitable blog niche?
- Step #2: How do I name my domain name for my blog?
- Step #3: Which Web Hosting is best for WordPress Blogs?
- Step #4: How do I install WordPress on my website?
- Step #5: How do I publish my WordPress site Live?
- Step #6: How do I write my first blog post?
- Step #7: How can I increase my blog traffic?
Without wasting much time, let’s spend some quality time and set up your blog on WordPress. This is the exact same process I have followed while setting up this website. I took all the necessary pictures and explained in detail how to achieve this design. Ready to learn how to start a blog, let’s get into it!
Step 1. How do I choose a profitable blog niche in 2020?
You should be ready with your pen & paper before starting this step. As this is the most important steps to create a blog. If you don’t want to do any mistake, better read this part carefully and then only go to the next step. This is the first chapter of learning how to start a blog.
Few of the common questions I got from many newbie bloggers are
- Which niche is best for a blog?
- How do I find my blog niche?
- How do I choose the right niche?
Yes, this should be your topmost priority. You should not jump into buying web hosting or theme design. Rather spend enough time to understand on which topic you can blog about.
If you want to blogs for money, you have to find the best blog topics that make the most money. Without a profitable niche, you can’t do make money blogging.
Many times people start a blog with excitement and start writing on every topic. Personally, I did the same thing and started writing on personal finance, blogging tips, latest news, smartphone reviews etc. in one single website.
This has completely messed up my blogging plan and affected my blog traffic. Because, after some days I realized that I am not able to generate content for every single category.
Not only that, but building an audience around your website has also become very difficult in that way. So, the first tips I would like to disclose here in this guide about how to start a blog is to pick the right profitable niche.
What is an example of a profitable niche?
So, you have to be more focused on niche selection. E.g. I am writing about blogging & WordPress related topics on this website.
If you want to make it more specific, then you can write only on blogging tips or web hosting related topics. That is what called niche selection process, which is a must before even buying a domain name.
If you want to start a blog in 2020 and make money, then you have to choose the most profitable blog niches 2019 or high demand blog topics. But What is the best niche to make money? Let’s explore a few of them to start a blog.
- How to Make Money
- Personal Finance
- Health and Fitness
- Food & Restaurant
- Beauty and Fashion
- Home & Lifestyle
- Personal Development
In which topic do you think you can write better content? You can share regular experiences and help people by writing quality problem-solving content? That should be your blog niche & you’re are ready for learning how to start a blog further.
#2. How do I name my domain name for my blog?
As soon as you are done with your blog niche, the next question will be how do I choose a catchy domain name? Your domain name will represent your business & brand.
The best way to start to find the best blog name is by using any one of these domain name generator tools. This is another crucial guide on this massive guide to learn how to start a blog.
If you are starting a multi-niche blog, then try to find out a generic or brandable name. Because you are going to write on different categories, not on a single topic.
Few examples of the multi-niche website:
But if your plan is to start a niche website or micro-niche affiliate site, then you have to find a suitable domain keeping that main keyword in the domain name.
Here are a few good examples of micro-niche affiliate websites.
Things to keep in mind while choosing a domain name for your blog
- Make sure you are 100% satisfied with your niche selection and domain name.
- Make sure you are keeping the domain short and crisp. If you target for a single niche website, then keep the main keyword or targeted long-tail keywords. This is good for SEO.
- Try to buy the .com extension, in case you don’t have any country-specific requirement.
- Make sure you are not adding any trademark terms. E.g. if you are starting a website of Amazon offers or Flipkart sale, then never buy website like Flipkartoffers.com. You will be in big trouble in the future.
- Try to avoid numbers, hyphens etc. In case you are not able to get the targeted keyword-rich domain, then you can definitely add numbers.
- If you are starting an affiliate website on a single niche, then try to put the buyer intent terms like Best Product Reviews, Best Product Price Under etc.
I am sure you are now ready to book your domain name. Just go to the next step as we are ready to set up our blog on WordPress.
Where to start a blog or Which blogging platform should I choose?
I am not going to spend much time here explaining whether to go for a paid or free blogging platforms. From the day I moved my blog from Google Blogspot to self-hosted WordPress.org, I have realized the power of blogging.
If you are 100% sure about your purpose of reading this guide on learning how to start a blog, you can easily pick the blogging platform among WordPress Vs. Blogspot. But not only me, in fact, the majority of people are also loving WordPress. Check this picture.
Step 3. Which Web Hosting is best for WordPress Blogs?
If you are searching for how to start blogging free, then you must try Blogger.com. But I am here to help you to start a blog on a self-hosted WordPress platform, not starting a free blog.
To set up your website on WordPress.org you need to buy a web hosting plan. On that web hosting, your website’s files will be stored. Now the question is which web hosting is good for WordPress blogs?
This a very important part of this how to start a blog guide.
Which web host is best for WordPress?
Well, there are many top contenders to go with as a beginner, but I will only recommend that I have used or have trust.
- SiteGround (Click Here To Get 75% OFF)
- A2 Hosting (Click Here To Get 67% OFF)
- FastComet (Click Here To Get 75% OFF)
But, How do I choose the best Web hosting service?
I will not fall into the trap of FREE domain name, Unlimited staffs etc. Rather, I will go with a hosting company that actually offers the best performance for my website. Remember, your website is your online business. So you must invest enough to secure your website from hackers or attacks at the same gets the best performance. Here is a video I have created to explain what to look for a web hosting company or how to choose the best WordPress hosting for your blog.
Yes, website speed & security is my top priority and if you also believe so, then you must start a blog on SiteGround hosting. They are the #1 WordPress hosting is many Facebook Polls. Check out my detailed review of SiteGround hosting.
Wondering how to start as a blogger? Like a smart blogger, I grabbed the 70% OFF SiteGround discount and bought GrowBig plan for 3 years. But after using for 8 months, I have upgraded to GoGeek plan.
Do you know how much I saved on web hosting? It’s more than $539 for the next 3 years.
Anyway, without wasting much time let’s follow the step by step guide on how to start a blog on SiteGround. We will buy the domain name and web hosting from SiteGround itself.
If you want to get a discount domain name, then try GoDaddy or NameCheap. I generally purchase the domain name from GoDaddy with good discounts. And the set up them with the web hosting DNS information.
If you find it too difficult, then forget about GoDaddy and continue reading this guide.
Step #1: First of all check the SiteGround WordPress hosting plans and choose the best to finish this how to start a blog guide. SiteGround offers 3 different web hosting plans.
- StartUp (
$11.95$3.95/mo): Good for 1 website, 10GB of storage, no bandwidth limitations, 24-hour support, & their in-house caching system.
- GrowBig (
$19.95$5.95/mo): Host unlimited websites, 20GB of space, unlimited bandwidth, priority support & an advanced caching system. RECOMMENDED
- GoGeek (
$34.95$11.95/mo): Same as the previous plans, advanced backup solution, Git repository & a staging area.
Just check the SiteGround Black Friday Discount to get 75% OFF [29th NOV – 3rd DEC]
Step #2: Click on GET STARTED button and proceed further. On the next screen, you have to choose a domain name. As I already have a website, I opted for the 2nd option.
Step #3: Now this is the tricky part as you have to be smart enough to save more. Most of the people think to go for 1 year only, but I would recommend you to buy SiteGround for 3 years. Otherwise, you have to pay the full renewal charges of $19.95/mo from next year onward. Yes, SiteGround renewal is quite expensive and it is a good move to buy at least 3 years’ duration. This will help you to host your website on a premium host like SiteGround and grow your blog traffic in the next 3 years.
You will get 4 options to choose from. Considering the GrowBig plan, your final bill will be as follows
- 1 Month Trial: Total $30.90 Excl. VAT (Paid website transfer)
- 12 months: Total bill $71.40 Excl. VAT (Free Website Migration)
- 24 months: Total bill $142.80 Excl. VAT (Free Website Migration)
- 36 months: Total bill $214.20 Excl. VAT (Free Website Migration)
My recommendation is to go for 3 years billing. As they are the best hosting provider and I am sure you will fall in love with them. So, don’t do the mistake of trying SiteGround for 1 year. Otherwise, you will regret while renewing SiteGround from 2nd year onward.
Note: I am not saying this to earn more commission. See, whether you buy for 1 year or 3 years, I will get a fixed commission only. I am saying all these to help you save huge money as I have been through similar experiences in the last 10 years of my blogging career and that’s why I want to help you to go with the best path.
These are the 4 data-centers from Siteground (Where Are SiteGround Servers Located?) Choose the one as per your expected website traffic country. I opted for the USA data center as I want to attract US traffic as well. If your website traffic is mostly from India, then you can choose the Singapore data center as well.
- Chicago, USA
- London, UK
- Amsterdam, Netherlands
But don’t worry about that too much, as your website speed can be improved better with the help of Cloudflare FREE CDN and WP Rocket Plugin. You can check the below video where I have tested my website SPEED after moving to the SiteGround GoGeek plan. You can easily find that the speed has improved drastically.
Step #4: Anyway, after all, necessary information you have to proceed further to pay the amount. SiteGround offers only one payment option, Credit Card/Debit Card.
Step #5: Finally agree with their terms & condition and click on the pay now button. On successful completion of your transaction, you will get an email from SiteGround. This will take some time to set up your hosting account with SiteGround.
Congratulations, you have invested for a better blogging career in 2020!
Additional Step For Them Who Bought Domain name From GoDaddy/NameCheap
After you complete the transaction and payment, you will get an email like below. Where you will find all the necessary details about the DNS server, cPanel access etc. You can follow a short tutorial about How To Point GoDaddy Domain to SiteGround on my Medium account.
Here is how it will look like in your GoDaddy account.
You have to change nameserver and then save. It will take some time to update the DNS records before you go for WordPress installation on your blog (next step of this start a blog guide).
Step 4. How do I install WordPress on my website(with pictures)?
As soon as you are done with your SiteGround hosting purchase & domain set up, you can move further to install WordPress on SiteGround. This is another crucial step in this how to start a blog guide. Let’s follow the steps further.
Step #1: Log in to SiteGround admin area with your user & password. You will find the Setup Your Website wizard. Here is a snapshot of my SiteGround admin panel.
For the first time, you will not see options like this, as you are not done with the initial setup. You will find a screen like a picture below. Choose the best suitable option as per your need.
- Start a new website
- Transfer a website (Free service for the first website)
- Don’t need help
Step #2: If you have an existing website then go for the website transfer option. I have opted for the same and raised a ticket to transfer my website from Bluehost to SiteGround. They helped me to migrate the complete website. I had to provide them the Bluehost cPanel details so that they can access my Bluehost data and migrate the website.
Anyway, for newbie bloggers keep the first option selected. Make sure the WordPress icon is also selected. Then proceed further & provide your admin details.
If you are not comfortable doing this, it is better to contact the SiteGround support team and they will happily install WordPress on your domain. They are always up to help you to start a blog on WordPress.
Step #3: Next confirm the details, and finally complete the setup. make sure to click on the terms & condition checkbox. These are very important steps for this how to start a blog free course, if you find any problem doing this you can ask me anytime or contact the SiteGround support team.
On successful completion, you will get a screen like below.
Step #4: You are done with your WordPress installation. It’s time to log in to your WordPress site and start setting up SEO and other details. Go to your SiteGround admin area and click on the right-side button.
Otherwise, you can type the URL (https://www.yourwebsitename.com/wp-admin/) in your browser like below to login to your WordPress dashboard.
Step 5. How Do I Set Up My WordPress Site Live? [Essential Settings]
So, we are done with the installation of WordPress on our domain name. What is next in this how to start a blog tutorial?
You can follow my article about this topic and make sure to set up your WordPress site completely. These are the mandatory steps to do and all necessary plugins to install for your website.
Install A premium theme: I never compromise with my website design as this is the face of my business. That’s why I always recommend buying a premium theme. This is one of the mandatory investment ones that must run the blogging business.
Which theme is best for WordPress Sites?
Personally, I use the themes from the top 3 premium theme providers.
- Divi Theme From Elegant Themes: https://bit.ly/2P0J3GP
- Genesis Framework: https://bit.ly/2pyHFAT
- GeneratePress Theme: https://bit.ly/2XwGX3V
- Astra Pro Theme: https://bit.ly/35bpD74
- Schema Pro Theme from MyThemeShop: https://bit.ly/330GAzG
Your theme selection should be as per your blogging niche. E.g. I am using Authority Pro from StudioPress Themes for this blog. I love Genesis themes as they are trustworthy, SEO friendly and very much secure (well coded with HTML5).
This way if your blog niche is Food or Travel or Personal Finance or Health etc. You have to find suitable themes to match your expectations.
Look for StudioPress & MyThemeShop as they have hundreds of themes in different niches.
- 15+ Best Themes From MyThemeShop in Different Niche
- 35+ Genesis child themes covering every blogging niche
To change your WordPress theme, you have to Go To >> Appearance >> Themes.
You can see GeneratePress is active for my website. I removed default WordPress themes as I don’t need them. You can click on the Add New Theme option and upload your new theme & activate it. The 2nd theme is the Focus Blog theme from ThriveThemes.com. I am using this theme for my Amazon affiliate website.
Set Up SG Optimizer: But besides that also, SiteGround hosting comes with 2 amazing plugins which will give you faster performance. Let’s set up the SG Optimizer & SiteGround SuperCacher plugin.
Note: This is one big reason why I choose SiteGround as my hosting for this how to start a blog guide. Yes, they offer good in-built cache and optimization tools within hosting plans only. That is the reason, the websites hosted on SiteGround loads faster compared to others.
Check the left side panel of your WP dashboard and click on SG Optimizer option. You can see the below screen. There are 4 different tabs where you can completely control the website optimization part. I will write a separate tutorial to explain the complete SG optimizer settings.
Step 6. How Do I Write My First Blog Post?
Now the real game starts, as blogging is all about writing quality content. Yes, whatever is your niche, you have to produce content which is worthy, useful for readers, solve reader’s query. And do you think you can do it with your blog?
Must-read articles after finishing the first 5 steps of how to start a blog guide.
- How To Write Content To Drive Organic Traffic To Blog
- Different Types Of Content That Gets Tons of Traffic To Your Blog
- The PEN Framework: Ultimate Guide To Write A Blog post
How do I create a blog post (Tips & Tricks)?
Your first blog post could be on anything on your niche. Don’t sit relax as you are done with the technical parts of how to start a blog free blogging course.
- Whatever is your niche, you can start writing a blog post about your journey. E.g. how did you create this blog, why you decided to start a blog, what is your inspiration to start a blog, what is the purpose of creating this website etc.
- If you have started a multi-niche news website, then definitely you can start writing on any topic which is trending. You can check with Google trends and start writing your first article. But better not to go in that way as multi-niche blogging is not at all an easy thing to do. You may lose your interest and not able to deliver content as per your expectations. So, better to spend enough time to write on a specific niche. E.g. I am writing about blogging tips, WordPress guide in this website. So, it is quite easy for me to concentrate and create content on similar interests continuously without irritating my readers.
- If you have a plan to start a micro-niche site, then you should focus on creating a home page concentrating on the main keyword putting every single information.
So, this is just an overall guide to help you out to write your first content. Writing quality content is always a challenge as we are mostly writing on similar topics what others are writing. So, you have to concentrate on creating something different from the existing ones.
Step 7. How Can I Increase My Blog Traffic?
Traffic generation is the biggest challenge for every blogger, especially if your blog is new it is very difficult to attract visitors to your website.
In that case, what to do to bring initial traffic to your blog?
- Make a list of blogs in your niche. Then start visiting their blogs and write a quality comment on their blog post. Make sure you keep your name and website address while commenting. Don’t put any keyword, these tricks don’t work.
- Be active in social media and engage more in facebook groups. Almost every group has their own rules where you will get a chance to share your blog post. E.g. I generally run a #BlogPromotion thread every week on Thursday. On that day you can share your blog post and get noticed by other bloggers and also get shared by them as well. This is a very good way to get recognized by bloggers and earn their first kick.
- Sign up to question-answer websites like Quora and start answering relevant questions in your blog niche. If you find any suitable opportunity to link your article, do that. You will get a good amount of quality traffic to your blog.
These are a few of the very basic but effective steps to start generating traffic to your website. Work hard, put genuine effort to build your authorship and reputation. Things will surely move things in a positive direction.
That’s It (Start A Blog in 2020 Guide)
So, finally, you are done with this massive guide about how to start a blog with SiteGround in 2020. I am sure you are happy like me to start your blogging journey on WordPress.
Just remember one thing, what I have learned in the last 10 years. Don’t hesitate to buy premium tools that are essential to growing your blog. The more you delay, the more you will lose. That’s why I have decided to invest in all essential tools & plugins to give the best performance & look for my website.
Want to know how do I manage this website? Check out my Blogging Toolbox.
I put a huge effort to create this long guide on How To Start a Blog in 2019 with lots of screenshots. My purpose is to simplify the process of starting a WordPress blog quickly. Probably it may take 10-15 minutes max if you understand the process.
In case you have any doubt regarding setting up your website on WordPress or any kind of information, then Join My Facebook Group. You can ask me anything, I would love to resolve your questions. In fact, there are many other awesome bloggers who can help you out. Feel free to ask your questions regarding this topic “how to start your blog on WordPress”.
Lastly, my huble request to you is that, please share this article on social platforms. So that more & more bloggers who want to start a blog can be benefited. Thank you for showing all your love and trust towards my effort.
How To Start a Blog in 2020 & Make Money Online (Step-By-Step Guide)
How do I make money online from a blog? Is that really possible or it's a scam. Well, if I can do that for years, I believe you will also be able to create