How to start a blog as a beginner?

Is blogging still profitable in 2021?

Manuja Samant

2021-02-12 5 min read

Starting a blog in 2021

How I stumbled upon blogging-

This is the first post on my blog and I am very happy to have chosen this topic. I have been there done that when it comes to thinking about starting a blog, getting overwhelmed with all the information available on the internet about blogging, and yet in the end, actually owning one- 'The Stray Soul.' I have been passionate about writing since my early childhood, be it writing for my own self or for my friends or winning competitions at school. It wasn't until a few months back that I discovered that I could actually make a living out of this hobby. I am in the final stage of Chartered Accountancy, pursuing my articleship. CA is a professional course in India for which articleship (3 years of work experience alongside studying!) is considered to be of utmost importance. And yes doing the articleship at a big 4 turned out to be the turning point in my life. In the very first year I figured out that this was not something that I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Trust me in India unlike any other country, there is no respect for work life balance. You have to unnecessarily slog and slog for hours. Work timings are a myth. I cannot change the work culture of the country altogether but sure I can do something for my own life, I thought. This motivated me and I started surfing the internet to find ways out. That is when I landed on the idea of starting a blogging business. You might be wondering but what about CA; yes I am pursuing that and working hard alongside to grow my blogging business.

Is starting a blog in 2021 profitable?

 When I decided to start a blog, I had all the questions a beginner would have. I belong to those types who need to sure about the returns before putting in their money. So, let me answer your question straight. After days and months of research I finally came to the conclusion that yes blogging is profitable as a business even in 2021.There are so many ways to monetize a blog and I am still new to all this. I will write an article about the same soon along with income proofs when my blog starts generating returns. Many people think that blogging has become saturated, the internet is already filled with millions of blogs and there is no scope left. However this is not true! I assure you, anyone can start a blog and earn from it provided you believe in yourself and your content and most importantly, do not give up. Consistency is the key to success when it comes to blogging. So what are you waiting for?

Follow these steps and start a blog now:

1.      Figure out what you are passionate about-

The first step before starting a blog is to decide what is it that you like talking about the most. What is that one topic that intrigues you? What is that thing for which people come to you for your advice? Grab a piece of paper and jot down all the things that came to your mind while reading this point. Although there is no hard and fast rule that you should blog only regarding the things you are passionate about but it makes it a lot easier.

2.      Choosing a niche-

Deciding a niche is the most important step while planning to start a blog. A niche is not a mere topic which you have decided. It is the one that decides who will be your target audience, what will your content be about, and also plays a role in determining the sources for monetizing your blog. The narrower the niche, the simpler it is to target. Some bloggers even go after micro niches. A micro niche is a more detailed version of a larger and broader topic. For example: Instead of talking about cars, you talk just about a targeted segment such as luxury cars. You might be wondering how you will figure out the earning potential and ranking difficulty of the niche you just finalized. I had the same question and found the answer to it on https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest. This website offers a few keyword searches for free. I signed up and created and account on this website to use the free keyword searches. From that I figured out the level of difficulty with regards to payment and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ranking for different keywords. Wait, do not get shaken by all this information and back out. The process gets smoother gradually; you just have to stay calm and focused on your aim of becoming a successful blogger.

3.      Buying a domain and hosting-
Domain

Now is the time to finally go and buy yourself a domain, build and own your own website. A domain name is the name of the website. There are various domain name extensions available such as .com, .net, .org, etc. I went that for a .com suffix as after doing my research I found out that .com is the most used and valuable domain extension and is SEO friendly. The pricing of the domain differs depending upon the type of extension you choose, the uniqueness and use of keywords in your domain, etc. For example, some providers charge extra for domains that have keywords in them which drive more traffic. Such domains are called premium domains.

Choosing the right domain name is also very important as it is the brand that you are creating. People will recognize you for this brand. You are planning on generating a brand value in the future so make sure that you choose the right one.

There are various ideas which might come to your mind while naming your blog-

Some of you might consider using your own name. Doing so would make it difficult for you to sell the domain in future in case you wish to (yes, domains have resale value!)

Another option is using keywords in your domain which gives the readers a clear idea as to what the blog is about.

Some people also give unique names to their website, for example- https://www.shoutmeloud.com/

 Hosting

Hosting is an ocean of a topic to explain about. There are various types of hosting available depending on your need and budget. One of the types is shared hosting in which multiple sites are hosted on a single server which keeps the costs of such hosting plans on the lower side. Unlike shared hosting, dedicated servers are completely isolated in nature. However as a beginner, I went for the shared hosting plans as it suited my requirement. There is another type called managed wordpress hosting in which the hosting provider has a dedicated team which takes care of the entire website related and server related matters. The drawback due to which I did not go for a managed WordPress site is that shared hosting allows you to host any website you want including simple HTML pages, managed hosting companies only allow you to host WordPress sites on their servers.

There are a number of good hosting providers to choose from; you can read about them in detail in my next article and make your decision.

There you go, congratulations you are now officially a blogging business owner. Yes you read it right! You now own your own website and are free to voice your opinion without having anyone bossing over your head. Yes it is that easy. You just have to build up your confidence and go and make that life changing decision!