BLUEPRINT: How to start a money-making blog in under 1 hour

Read time: about 14 minutes (2988 words)

Incase you've been living under a rock for the last 10 years, you'll have no doubt read that there's a lot of people making a full-time living from 'blogging'.

I've been blogging for years. Want to know what my biggest regret is? I regret I didn't start earlier. If I did, I could have made so much more money.

To give you an idea about how much can be made with blogging, here's what some of my influencers made last month. Click the links for proof.

BrendanMace.com $26,059.22
MatthewWoodward.co.uk $20,927.18
IncomeBully.com $3,292.50

The thing is, these people aren't the top earning bloggers, these are just people I follow. Some bloggers are making much more.

Crazy, right?

Most people are scared of starting a blog. They need to know about SEO, HTML, CSS, marketing, and more. Most people give up before they've even started, and I don't blame them.

The real truth is, it's not that difficult. Sure, it means learning new things, but it's really not that hard.

I'm about to walk you through it all, in plain English - No geeky words. From writing your first blog post, to promoting it to your target audience - I have you covered.

What you'll learn;

  • How to start a blog from scratch.
  • How to get traffic to a brand new blog without using google.
  • How to create engaging content on a new blog.
  • How to make money on your first day of blogging.

Reading this complete guide, and putting everything into practice, should take no longer than an hour. By the end, you'll have everything in place to be making money from as soon as today.

BONUS: Still wondering if you should start a blog? I've made a cheatsheet for you simplifying all the steps in this post. Click here to get the cheatsheet

All fired up? Ready to go?

Let's get into it.

Choosing a topic for your blog

Choosing your blog's topic/theme/niche, or whatever you want to call it, is crucial.

If you want to make lots of money, you have to get this right.

You may think the right choice here is to go where the money is.

You're wrong.

You should go where you heart is.

Why?

The biggest problem bloggers have, is creating content, consistently.

If you're blogging about a topic that doesn't interest you, your commitment will burn out almost instantly.

If you blog about a passion you have, you'll be able to create an amazingly huge amount of content. The more content you create, the more money you can make.

So with this in mind, think about something you could do all day, every day.

Chances are, you already know what this is.

When you're not doing it, you're thinking about how you can't wait to do it next.

Do you know what I'm talking about?

You've found your blog's topic.

Thinking about a domain name and branding

First of all, you need a domain name.

Without a domain name, nobody will know how to access your website.

A domain name is typically a word, followed by an extension. There's numerous extensions, but .com is the most popular and easiest to remember.

You see domains everywhere you go around the internet.

  • google.com
  • amazon.com
  • facebook.com

Your domain name will be your branding. It's how people will know you.

Your domain name doesn't need to mean anything (mine is synbyte.com), but it helps to have your blogs topic mentioned in it. It will let the user know what your blog is about before they visit, which can be helpful.

Here's some suggestions;

  • horsefanatic.com
  • playbettersoccer.com
  • chesschampion.com
  • thelifeofaknitter.com

The domain name ideally should be easy to remember, and easy to say.

Don't think too much about it for now.

Domain names usually cost between $10 and $20, but don't worry, I can get you a domain name for free a little further down the page.

Getting hosting

The first practical step, is to get hosting from a web host.

Each website online is stored on a server, by a web hosting company. This is often just called a 'web-host'.

The web-host takes care of storing all the files for your website and is reponsible for making sure your website is online.

When I was a freelance web developer, I often had to recommend a web host to my clients.

I've found Bluehost to be the most reliable and easy to use. They're also one of the cheapest. I've partnered with them to provide you with hosting from only $3.95 a month. They usually charge $7.99.

Want to know the best part?

I mentioned a minute ago that I could get you a free domain. Well, Bluehost will happily throw in a free domain name when you pay for your hosting.

Not bad, huh?

Head over to Bluehost and click the big green 'get started now' button.

The basic package comes with everything you need, including your free domain name.

Click select to get started.

You'll now be taken to a screen where you can choose to use a new domain, or transfer an existing one.

Enter your domain name that you would like into the new domain box and click next.

You'll now be taken to a page where you can fill in your account information.

Just below that is the payment section. If you choose to go for 3 years of hosting, you pay only $3.95 a month.

If you choose to pay for 12 months, you pay $5.45 per month.

The few bucks a month extra might seem like much to you, but you'll still get the discount I setup with Bluehost, so don't worry about it. It's still far cheaper than what it would cost you without my discount.

Besides, you can easily make the entire payment back in your first month blogging!

You'll also be given a list of extras to add to your account.

To be honest, you dont need any of these extras, so untick them.

We're nearly there.

Enter your card information, then tick the box to confirm that you've read and agreed to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Then click submit.

If everything goes through smoothly, Bluehost will have just sent you an email that contains a password.

Go to Bluehost and click Login in the bar at the top of the page.

You can now login using the domain name you chose and the password they gave you.

Installing Wordpress

Wordpress is a piece of software that allows you to make/edit/delete blog posts.

It's easy to use, and free. What's better is that you don't need to be good with computers to be able to install it and set it up.

You can install it in just a few clicks. It's super-easy.

Ready?

In the Bluehost admin area that you logged into, you'll see many things to click on.

Under 'Website Builders', click Install Wordpress.

Now click Install

Now choose the domain you registered.

Ignore the directory for now. Leave that blank.

You're on the last step now.

Fill in the username and password you would like for your Wordpress admin account.

Also be sure to give your site a title. Do't worry about this too much, as it can easily be changed from Wordpress later.

Click Install Now and you're done.

Setting up Wordpress

Ok, so you've got Wordpress installed now. See, I told you it was easy.

If it didn't log you in automatically, go to http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin.

If you used the correct username and password, you should now see this;

Doesn't it look nice?

There's a lot of things to click on, and options to tweak, but we'll get to those in a moment.

Wordpress comes nicely configured out-of-the-box, but we can quickly do a few tweaks to make it ever better.

Make sure the Site Title and tagline is good.

You should change these to fit the topic of your blog.

The Site Title will appear across various parts of your blog, as well as the users browser title bar at the top of their screen.

The tagline will also appear across various parts of the site, but this depends on the theme you'll be using and where the theme chooses to show the tagline.

Change the default theme

The default theme is very boring, lacks color, and isn't optimized for SEO.

There's many free themes which are far better.

Go to Appearance, then to Themes.

You'll now see a list of themes you have installed. You should start off with 3.

If you want to see a lit of other themes that are available to install, click the 'Add New' button.

You'll now be given a list of free Wordpress themes you can install.

When you've came across one you like the look of, you can install it, or choose to preview it first.

When you press the preview button, Wordpress will put you into a split-screen view. The preview of the theme will be on the right and you'll see a panel like this on the left;

If you like the look of the theme after seeing it in the live preview, click on the 'Install' button at the top.

The button will change for a few seconds to installing... and then to Activate.

Click Activate to (you guessed it) activate the theme and make it live on your blog.

Making the page addresses better

Wordpress is setup to give your blog posts addresses like http://yourdomain.com/?p=123 by default. Yuk. That's ugly, and not helpful.

It doesn't tell your reader what the page is about, or look good when it's shared on Facebook or Twitter.

Wouldn't it be nicer if they had addresses like http://yourdomain.com/my-awesome-post?

Go to Settings, then to Permalinks.

Now select Post name then click the blue Save Changes button at the bottom.

Monetization

You'll be surprised at how many ways there are to make money with a blog.

Most people wonder how it's possible that you can simply write words on a page and make money from it.

Of course, there's a bit more to it than that.

It really all depends on how you want your blog to make money.

Some examples are;

  • Using a banner advert network to show banner ads.
  • Selling advertising space directly
  • Using affiliate links to promote companies products
  • Writing and selling books related to your blogs topic
  • Sponsored guest posts (where other blogs pay you to write posts for them
  • Building an exclusive members area where people have to pay money to access the content

If you want to make find ways to make money with your blog, simply do a quick Google search

For now though, I'll walk you through one of the easiest ways, Google Adsense. It won't make you the most amount of money, but it's very easy and quick to setup. You can literally start making money with it today.

Yes, I did just say you can make money with it, TODAY.

Getting started with Google Adsense

In your Wordpress Admin panel, click Plugins, then Add New

Type in advanced ads in the search box.

Click Install

Aftre a few seconds, the install button that you clicked will change to 'activate'.

Click Activate.

Ok, head over to Google Adense.

Click the SIGN UP NOW button.

To use Google Adense, you'll need a Google account.

If you have a Google account, click Sign In.

If not, click Create Account to create one.

After logging into your Adsense account, go to Settings, then Account Information.

You'll see your Publisher ID. Select this text with your mouse and press ctrl-c (or command-c if on a Mac) on your keyboard to copy the text. We'll need this in a second.

Go back to the Wordpress admin panel. Navigate to Advanced Ads, then to Settings then paste (ctrl-v, or command-v on the keyboard) the Adsense publisher ID into the Adsense ID field.
Scroll down the page and click Save.
Click Advanced Ads in the left sidebar. You'll now see something like the image below. Click the link to watch the video which will show you how to create and position your first advert.

Your first post

At this stage, you should be pretty excited. You're about to create your first masterpiece.

After logging into wordpress, you'll see a bar at the top. Click New to start a new post.

You'll be brought to an editor which is simple to use.

When it comes to writing that first post, you might find it's a lot harder than you imagined.

Don't worry. This is perfectly natural. We all go through this.

One thing you might struggle with at the start, is how to make your posts look interesting and get people to read them all the way to the end.

Here's a few tips;

Include data

Our brains get very excited when they see numbers. Numbers are brain-candy.

Using data, facts, graphs, etc helps keep a user visually-stimulated.

Keep paragraphs short

You'll notice that I keep my paragraphs short and sweet. I rarely go above 2 sentances in a paragraph.

Reading long passages of text can be very tiring for a reader.

Smaller, shorter paragraphs are much more easier to consume. The longer you make your paragraphs, the more energy people have to use to read them.

This can ultimately lead people to leaving your site, and that's not what you want.

Use images

Images help break up your posts. This can help prevent the user from getting tired and 'bored'.

Anyway, back to writing your blog post...

When you're writing your post, you'll notice there's also various boxes in the right sidebar, but ignore them for now.

We only need to focus on the box that has the Preview and Publish buttons.

When you're ready to publish your post, click the Publish button.

Let's get you some traffic

So your blog is now online, and you've written your first post.

Now everyone will visit it, right?

Well no, not quite.

Most people think that as soon as a website goes online, people will magically find it.

The truth is; If you don't tell anyone it exists, nobody will know it's there.

Within time, your site will get into Google, and you'll get organic search traffic, but that will take months.

To be able to get traffic right now, you'll need to tell the world all about your website.

Here's a few ways you can do that;

Change your email signature

Do you send a lot of email? If you do, putting a link to your new site in your email signature is an easy way to get some traffic

If you're using Gmail, click the cog icon on the right.

Then click on settings.

You'll end up on the settings page.

Scroll down the page until you find the option to change your signature.

Click the link icon in the bar above the text box.

You'll be given a popup window. Enter the text you want the link to display, and the address of your new blog.

Then click OK.

Scroll to the bottom the page and click Save Changes.

Done. Now every email you send will have a link back to your website.

Comment on forums related to your chosen topic

This is similar to the email signature method.

Do a search on Google for forums related to your blog topic you chose.

Visit the forums that look to be the most relevant and make an account on each one.

After you've made an account, you'll be able to access your profile settings.

From there, you'll be able to edit your signature in the same way you were able to edit your email signature.

Now post lots of replies and your link will show on the bottom of each post you make.

Facebook groups

Facebook Groups are another good source of traffic.

Go to Facebook and Use the search bar at the top of the window.

Type in the topic of your blog and press the enter key on your keyboard, or press the magnifying glass.

After you've done that, you'll get a generic search results page, but we don't want that. We want to see only groups.

Click Groups on the second bar.

You'll now get a list of Facebook groups. Click the Join button of the public groups that sound most relevant.

After joining, you'll be able to post links to your site, like you would with any other post. You should probably post a few replies to other people's posts first. If you don't, it will look like you joined the group just to post your own links, which may lead to you being kicked out the group.

Congrats! You now have a money-making blog

That's it! You're at the end.

  • You now have a blog with Wordpress installed and setup.
  • You've created your first piece of content.
  • You've monetized that content.
  • You've started driving traffic to that content.
The next step you need to take is to keep producing content on a regular basis. Start with a blog post every month that's 1000+ words long. Or if you're comfortable with it, aim for one post a week.

As you become a better writer, you'll be able to create multiple posts every week, even if you only use a few hours every day.

Basically, the more content you produce, the more traffic you'll be able to gain. More traffic, more money.

You have a solid foundation now to be able to make money writing about what you love to write about. How much money you make is all up to you.

If you have any questions or comments, chat to me in the comments below.