How many ever advancement come today on the internet, blogs are still the most loved form to share content. There is a hidden connection between the blogger and the reader. And this post is all about blogs.
And why this post?
Well, every time when I open my Quora, I am tired of seeing a list of questions.
- How to create a blog for free?
- How to start a blog for free and make money?
- How to make money from blogging?
- How to open a blog? ( LOL. That’s not a book to open!)
- How to start a blog to make money?
I am sick of seeing and answering this questions again and again.
So, I decided to write a gigantic blog post to answer all those questions.
Before I start with my topic, I am gonna alert you. This is an extremely long post. So, if you are in a hurry, bookmark this.
- Image credits: Persuasion Marketing and Media
What is a blog?
A blog is a set of web pages, which is regularly updated. They are similar to websites.
But most websites are static. Whereas blogs are not. The blogger is going to publish new content regularly or update his old posts.
Why do you need to have a blog?
There are few valid reasons for this.
- Enthusiasts write a blog to share their experiences
- Graduates start a blog to teach others what they know. And to pitch wise people for great opportunities
- Business people have a blog to connect with customers.
- Writers have blogs to write a series of stories.
- Children create a blog to find out, what’s that actually?
- Mothers start blogs to start sharing parenting tips
And what else left?
Thus blogs find a wide range of use.
So, now let’s look at how to create a blog from scratch.
How to create a blog?
Well, I could feel your thoughts.
Can I create a blog for free? Or will it cost me?
Well, blogs can be created for free. But, when you plan to make money out of your blog, you need to invest.
I will tell you 3 places, where you can create a blog.
Blogger is a blogging platform that belongs to Google. Your blog will be linked to your gmail account. The interface will look very simple. This is a free blogging platform.
But, the features are limited. You will have to learn to code if you want to perform advanced functions with your blog.
However, for someone who is writing just for spending time and who is not a serious blogger, this is sufficient. You can also make money here with Adsense ads, but the earnings are limited. I will cover this in the later part of this post.
Remember, I mentioned this platform as free to use. So, your blog address will look like onlinerockerswix.blogspot.in
- Image Credits: Pixabay
WordPress.com is different from WordPress.org.
What’s that difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org? Both are WordPress, right?
WordPress is actually an open source software. You can download that software from WordPress.org.
Whereas WordPress.com is the hosted version of WordPress software.
Still, have a confusion, right?
Let me go with a simple explanation.
WordPress software is just similar to that. Here,
The domain is going to be your laptop. This is unique. Just like you have your own laptop, you are going to have your own domain.
Hosting package is similar to your operating system (OS). Only when you have this on your laptop ( hosting for the domain), you will be able to install the software and enjoy using it.
Now, WordPress is the software. Once, you install it, you can enjoy using it. Just like you install SolidWorks / AutoCAD in your operating system, you would be able to start designing.
Now, I guess you would have a clear idea of what is WordPress software.
WordPress.com is a website where the software WordPress is already installed. You can create your blog there for free.If you have a blog at WordPress.com, some features are limited. You will have to pay to use those features.
So far, we discussed free blogs. Now, let’s talk about the most powerful blogging platform on the internet.
You might have a doubt,
Is WordPress better than Blogger?
You will get your answer to this question in this guide on WordPress vs Blogger. Spend time to check it out.
You might think when I can create a free blog at WordPress.com, why should I go with WordPress software.
This infographic will clear your doubt.
- Image Credits: Pinterest
Still not convinced with this software?
Let me list down the features of WordPress.
- WordPress has 4600+ themes and 49,750+ plugins available to use for free.
- With WordPress, you can customize your website so easily. Just navigate to Appearance -> Customize
- You have a big support community to clarify your doubts.
- WordPress will help you go higher in Search Engine Rankings, because of its in-built SEO feature.
- Your website is highly protected with WordPress when you use security plugins.
- No need to spend the time to take backup. Backup plugins will do them for you.
- WordPress is capable of handling different media types like Audio, Video, Documents, etc
And last to show it’s trusted factor.
WordPress powers 22.5% of all websites on the internet.
I guess you would have now understood the real power of WordPress.
Now, let me tell the requirements for creating a self-hosted WordPress site.
If you already purchased Domain and web hosting skip this section and move on to the next part of Installing WordPress.
If you haven’t let me guide you with this.
There are hundreds of domain and web-hosting companies out there. You need to choose the good quality one.
Don’t worry. I will help you with this.
At OnlineRockersHub, we recommend only three domain and web-hosting companies. Here are they.
There are a lot of newbies, who don’t have any kind of knowledge on how to purchase a hosting and domains. They end up spending a lot of money. So, I would explain how to save money while purchasing a domain and hosting on each of those companies. I will show you the savings one by one.
BlueHost offers .com domains $11.99/ yr when you purchase and web-hosting for $8.99/ month.
Case 1: BlueHost offers you a free domain for the first year when you buy a hosting package. Let me purchase it for 1 year and renew it for next 2 years. I am not using any offer link for discounts in this case.
- Cost Basic Hosting package for 1 year: $107.88 ( $8.99/mo)
- Cost of .com Domain: $0 ( Free for the first year. You can get this when you purchase hosting)
- Domain Privacy Protection for 1 year: $11.88 ($0.99/ mo)
- Site Backup Pro for 1 year: $35.88 ( $2.99/mo)
- SiteLock Security for 1 year: $23.88 ( $1.99/mo)
- Renewal of Hosting package for 2 years: $215.76 ($8.99/mo)
- Renewal of .com domain for 2 years: $31.98 ($15.99/yr)
- Extending Domain Privacy Protection for 2 years: $23.76 ($0.99/mo)
- Extending Site Backup Pro for 2 years: $71.76 ( $2.99/mo)
- Extending SiteLock Security for 2 years: $47.76 ($1.99/mo)
Total Cost: 570.54$
Case 2: I am purchasing Hosting package for 3 years. I will be getting a free .com domain for 1 year. Since I am purchasing it for 3 years, I need not renew. I will also be using the special discount link to reduce my price.
- Cost of Basic Hosting Package for 3 years: $287.64 ($7.99/mo)
- Cost of .com Domain: $0 ( free for first year only)
- Domain Privacy Protection for 3 year: $35.64 ($0.99/ mo)
- Site Backup Pro for 3 year: $107.64 ( $2.99/mo)
- SiteLock Security for 3 year: $71.64 ( $1.99/mo)
- Renewal of .com domain for 2 years: $31.98 ($15.99/yr)
Total Cost: $534.54
Now, I will use this special discount link for BlueHost and reduce the hosting package price to $3.95 /mo for 36 months.
Thus new Hosting Package price for 3 years will be: $142.2
New Total Cost: $389.1
Did you look it at?
See the amount difference, $570.54 – $389.1 = $181.44
I saved you $181.44
I would recommend anyone to go with BlueHost if you are going to start any one of the following types of blog/websites.
- New social media Platform
- News website
- eCommerce site
- Business website
- Online Courses website ( like Udemy)
Hostgator offers .com domains at $12.95/yr web – hosting at $6.25/month.
Don’t worry use can make use of coupon code: ONLINEROCKERSHUB at Hostgator and get up $50 discount.
Did you find the price too high?
They are. Because they offer high quality. Hence, they charge.
But, not to worry, because I have a simple trick to save more than $100 when you purchase domain and web-hosting services.
Let me show this to you using Hostgator service.
In this case, I am going to purchase .com domain and a Hatchling web-hosting package at Hostgator. Here, I am going to purchase it for 1 year and renew it for the next 2 years. Here is the cost estimate without applying any coupon codes.
- Cost of .com domain: $12.95
- Privacy protection: $12.95
- Hatchling: 1 year: $152.34 ( $6.25/mo)
- Hosting add-ons: $44.94
- Renewal of .com domain for 2 years: $30 ( $15 / yr)
- Extension of privacy protection for 2 years: $25.9
- Renewal of Hatchling for 2 years: $214.8 ( $8.95/ mo)
- Extension of Hosting add-ons for 2 years: $89.88
Total Cost: $583.76
Altogether it is going to cost you $583.76
In this case, I am going to buy a .com domain and Hatchling package at Hostgator for 3 years. I am going to buy straight away for 3 years, without renewing. Let’s check this, without applying any coupon codes.
- Cost of .com domain for 3 years: $38.85
- Privacy protection for 3 years: $38.85
- Hatchling 3 years: $250.20
- Hosting add-ons for 3 years: $134.82
Further, when you applied the coupon code: ONLINEROCKERSHUB, the hatchling price reduced to $187.65
Thus the total becomes, $400.17
Could you notice the price difference in both the cases, ( $583.76 – $400.17 = $183.59). I saved you $183.59 with this simple trick.
Here are my recommendations for using Hostgator. Buy Hosting package from Hostgator, if you are going to create a
- Business website
- eCommerce website
- Video sharing platforms ( Like Youtube)
- Online File Storage site ( Like DropBox)
- Any kind of website with high traffic and require high storage
OnlineRockersHub is hosted at Namecheap. They offer .com domains for $10.69/ yr and shared hosting for $9.88/yr when you purchase the first time. You can check our coupons for Namecheap here. Out of the three hosting services, that I mentioned Namecheap is the cheapest one.
Let’s check if the renewal trick works here too.
Here, I am purchasing a .com domain and Value shared hosting package for 1 year. And then renewing it for 2 years.
- Cost of .com domain: $10.69
- ICANN fee: $0.18
- Whois Guard: $0 ( Free for 1st year)
- Value Shared Hosting package: $9.88 ( only for the first year)
- .com Domain Renewal: $21.38 ( $10.69/yr)
- ICANN fee for 2 years: $0.36
- Whois Guard renewal for 2 years: $5.76 ( $2.88/ yr)
- Value Shared Hosting Package Renewal for 2 years: $77.76 ($38.88/ yr)
Total Cost: $126.01
Here I am directly purchasing .com domain for 3 years and Value Shared Hosting package for 1 year. In this case, you can apply coupon code only for the domain. Check the Namecheap coupon code for domains here.
Note: At Namecheap, you can buy a Hosting package at a reduced price only for the 1st year and then you must renew it.
- Cost of .com domain for 3 years: $31.47 ( $10.49/ yr when you purchase it for 3 years)
- Whois Guard for 1st year: $0 ( Free for 1st year)
- ICANN fee for 3 years: $0.54 ( $0.18/ yr)
- Value Shared Hosting package: $9.88 ( only for the first year)
- Whois Guard renewal for 2 years: $5.76 ( $2.88/ yr)
- Value Shared Hosting Package Renewal for 2 years: $77.76 ($38.88 / yr)
Total Cost: $125.41
It is possible to reduce the cost of a .com domain for the first year to $9.66 with the coupon code. Thus total cost estimation will be $124.58
Namecheap does not offer a coupon code for Value shared hosting package.
So, more or less the cost is going to be the same. Namecheap has well analyzed the market, their product and has the right price. Unlike other hosting packages, you will not end up spending a lot of money.
I will be recommending Namecheap in the following cases,
- If you want to start a personal blog
- If you want to try out affiliate marketing, or with Google Adsense.
- If you want to start a forum.
Just before going on to purchase, I would like to introduce your few more terms related to domain and hosting.
Types of Web Hosting:
Shared Hosting: Shared Hosting means, that your website is going to be hosted along with many other websites on the same server.
Dedicated Hosting: When you buy a Dedicated Hosting, your website is going to be hosted on a private server. This server is dedicated one and only for you. No other websites will be hosted on this server.
VPS hosting: VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. When you buy VPS hosting package, you will get root access to the server. The resources like CPU, RAM etc will be shared, but still, you will have the complete control of your allocated resources. Thus a small private server for you.
Reseller Hosting: You can start your web hosting company when you buy this package. Because you will be able to rent your allotted hard disk on the server and bandwidth. Looks cool right?
There are so many types of Hosting packages, which one should I choose?
- While starting a new blog / eCommerce store, go on with Shared Hosting.
- If you want to create a simple web hosting company, go on with Reseller Hosting.
- If you already have a top-level website, go on with VPS / Dedicated Hosting.
Let’s buy Domain and Web Hosting at Namecheap:
Now, I will show you a quick tutorial on how to buy a domain and hosting at Namecheap.
Go to Namecheap. Under Hosting, you will be able to see a list of hosting packages. Select the one you want.
- Image credits: Namecheap
Add the package to the cart
Now, you will have to choose the main domain for hosting. You can do any one of the following.
- Get a free .website domain at Namecheap for 1 year
- You can purchase a new domain.
- If you have already purchased a domain at Namecheap, you can use that.
- If you already have a domain at a different domain registrar ( like Hostgator and BlueHost), you can use that
In this tutorial, I am choosing to purchase a new domain.
In the next page, you will have to,
- Choose your domain name
- Choose the number of years, you want to buy a domain for. ( Always try to buy for long period of time, to save money)
- Click “ Add New Domain to Cart”
Once, the cart is updated with your orders, choose “Continue”.
Here, you will have to enter the Promo code to avail discount.
Once, you enter the promo code, choose “Apply”.
Now, you will be taken to a page, where you will have to create an account for yourself at Namecheap.
If you already have an account, just log in. Else, create a new one.
Now, you will have to make payment. There are three payment methods available at Namecheap. They are:
- Credit Cards
Once, you made the payment, you will get receipt and cPanel login credentials through the mail.
So, now you have the basic requirements to create a new WordPress website.
Now, we will have to install WordPress software on your hosting through cPanel.
Installing WordPress in Namecheap Web Hosting using cPanel:
Now, you will have to log in to your cPanel. You would have received the cPanel address, cPanel login credentials along with the receipt in the mail you received. Your Cpanel address will be something like this.
Go to the Cpanel, and log in to your account.
Now, under Softaculous Apps Installer, click WordPress. Now, you will get the WordPress Page in Softaculous Apps installer.
Just Click “Install Now”.
Now, you will have to fill up the details on this page.
- Choose protocol: select http:// or https:// . If you want to use https:// you will need an SSL certificate.
- Choose Domain: Choose your website, where you want to install
- Admin username: The default one is the admin. But, kindly change it to something else. For security concerned, it is not advisable to keep admin as the username.
- Admin password: Create a strong password.
- Select check box to install Loginizer plugin. This plugin will help you limit login attempts.
- Enter the email address, where you want to send the installation details
- Click “Install”
That’s it. You have successfully installed WordPress software. You can log in to your site. The login link will be something like this.
Installing Themes to your WordPress site:
Now, you have successfully created a WordPress website. Now, the next step is to install a good WordPress theme.
A WordPress theme would have been created for a specific purpose. So, you will have to find the theme which suits you.
I have written a post on WordPress themes. Here’s it.
To install a theme,
Go to Appearance -> Themes.-> Add new
You will find a huge list of themes. Select the one, which suits you, and install the theme. Do forget to activate the theme.
Before finishing off this section, I would like to tell you about premium themes.
Premium themes? What are they?
WordPress.org website shows you a list of free themes. There are premium themes too. These themes will have more features, more functions than your free ones. There are premium themes for different types of website needs. ( like coupons themes, magazine theme, photo gallery themes)
There are a lot of websites on the internet selling WordPress themes. Often beginners fall prey. They buy theme where it is offered at a cheap rate than others ( sometimes free). You must understand that these themes are nulled, which means that the code has been modified.
When you install this kind of themes, you will face big issues. That modified code will make the work easy for hackers.
Let’s keep this in mind. So, when you want to buy a premium theme, buy from the trusted marketplace.
We recommend you to buy a theme from any of the following trusted marketplaces:
Installing Plugins on your WordPress site:
You might be new to the term. So, first I will explain what a plugin is.
WordPress Plugins are actually a set of codes that are already written and readily available to perform specific operations on your website. It is so simple to use this. You can install and activate the plugin to use it. If you are not satisfied with the performance of plugin, you can deactivate and delete the plugin.
Thus, you can enjoy a lot of features in WordPress without coding.
Currently, I am writing a long list of useful WordPress plugins. I will link to that post when I publish it. In the meantime, you can subscribe to my newsletter. I will notify you when the post is published.
It’s time to start blogging.
To create a blog post, in the sidebar of your WordPress dashboard, choose Posts -> Add New.
Start writing content, publish it and enjoy blogging.
Once you start posting content, you need traffic to your newly created website. Refer my list of free traffic methods.
Now, comes the most important need of our journey. We need to make money while blogging to meet our needs.
Let’s Make Money while Blogging:
- Image Source: Make a Website Hub
With Blogging, there are two major sources of making money. Let’s get on to the first one.
Google Adsense is a contextual ad display program of Google. You can make a good sum of money with Google Adsense.
How to put Google Adsense on your site?
If you want to put Google Adsense on your site, first you need to get approval from Google Adsense approval. But, the problem with Google Adsense is that it’s not so easy to get Google Adsense approval.
Google has a very strict policy while accepting new publishers. Because they expect some good quality.
I received Adsense approval for OnlineRockersHub, after facing so many difficulties. I will write about the difficulties I faced on another day.
How does Google Adsense work?
Google Adsense has a great number of advertisers through its Adwords program. These advertisers create ads at Adwords program. Now, Google Adsense will put these ads on its publishers’ website and also in the Google Search Engine. These advertisers will have to pay Google for these ads.
For placing these ads, Google Adsense will give 68% of the advertiser’s money to its publishers and keeps 32% as their commission.
How to make money with Google Adsense?
There are two major ways to make money with Google Adsense. Google Adsense will pay you for
- Every Click on Ad
- For displaying ad
When someone clicks on your ad, you will be paid. CPC ( Cost Per Click) will tell you how much you will be paid if someone clicks that ad.
I mentioned Adsense also pays for displaying ad. CPM ( Cost Per Impressions) will tell you how much you will be paid for displaying that ad 1000 times.
The following resources would be useful for you while dealing with Google Adsense
- Google Adsense Account Approval Process – 2017 edition
- Beginner’s Guide to create Adsense Unit the right way.
- Maximum Number of Adsense units on a web page.
- How to use URL channels in Google Adsense?
- Adsense Address verification with Pin or Alternate Methods
Special Guide: Here is an A-Z Adsense Guide from Harsh Agarwal, that will help you increase your Google Adsense income.
What should I do, if Google is not approving your account?
Well, No worries.
Because there are good alternatives to Google Adsense. These programs do not have so complicated approval process. Most of these programs approve new blogs.
Here are the Google Adsense alternative programs that I would recommend you to join:
This is one of the simplest ways to make money while blogging. Let’s get to know the other way.
Well, for many this term would be completely new. Some might have seen websites mentioning the term “affiliated with”.
So what is an affiliate actually mean?
Affiliate is someone/company that refers customers to merchants. This affiliate will in term get commissions for referring.
You must understand that affiliate marketing is a little different from referral programs. Referral programs are very common. I have also joined in some famous referral programs. Here are they,
The following infographic will teach you more about Affiliate Marketing in detail.
- Image Source: Infographics Archive
So now, you have come to know what is affiliate marketing and how to do that.
Now, you might think about how much I can earn from Affiliate Marketing?
The appropriate answer is that there is no limit. Top Bloggers use affiliate link wisely and make thousands of dollars every month. For example, Harsh Agrawal makes a minimum of $30,000 every month from affiliate marketing.
Exclusive Guide: Read Harsh Agrawal’s affiliate marketing guide to make money with affiliate marketing.
But, where to get started? Which program should I join?
I will help you with this.
Each merchant will have their own affiliate marketing program. You will have to join them individually.
I will list out some of the top affiliate marketing programs based on niche, where you can join. Few of the best affiliate marketing programs that I like are:
- BlueHost ( WordPress Hosting and Domain)
- Envato ( WordPress Plugins, Themes etc)
- Content Samurai ( Turn blogs to Videos)
There is something called affiliate networks. An affiliate network is simply a collection of many affiliate programs. You need not visit individual websites and signup for an affiliate program. Just one signup and you can promote any affiliate marketing you want.
This is just like your local market. All shops are available there. You just need to visit the appropriate shop and get what you want.
There are many affiliate networks available on the internet. The best affiliate marketing networks are:
What should I do, if I need some information related to the product that you are going to be promoting for affiliate marketing?
Anywhere you join as an affiliate, you will be assigned to an affiliate marketing manager. Their job is to help you out. You can contact them for more details.
We have discussed the easiest way to make money on your blog. I hope you will use these methods to make enough money out of your blog. If you have any doubts let me know in the comments section. I will clarify it. Do subscribe to my email newsletter, for more blogging guides.
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