Maybe you’ve been blogging for a while, and enjoy everything about your hobby. Being able to share your knowledge and experiences on a topic with an audience, connecting with likeminded people and improving your skills- there are so many benefits to writing your own blog. Plus, these days blogging can be lucrative too. Companies love to work with bloggers because of the strong influence they have, and how backlinks from their site can massively boost their own rankings in search engines. What this means if you already have an established blog, there are things you can do to improve your chances of being chosen to work with by sponsors as well as implementing a few options to monetize. Here’s how you can go about making your blog your full-time job!
Domains and Hosting
When you first setup your blog you will be given your blog’s name with ‘.wordpress.com’ or ‘.blogspot.com’ at the end (depending on the platform you have chosen). While this is fine and functions as it is, many sponsors will actually only work with bloggers who have purchased their own domain name. You can buy these cheaply and then link them to your blog which gives it a far more polished and professional look. Alternatively you could host a blog on your own WordPress site, but be wary of cheap WordPress hosting. Inexpensive hosting might sound like a good deal, but it won’t come with any support options which could prove tricky if you get stuck. Unless you’re an expert, it’s better to have the help on hand with these things. Choose a domain name that’s catchy and not too similar to any of your competitors. Try to avoid too many hyphens and don’t use misspellings if the name you want is unavailable. Spend some time getting your blog name right, or you will come to regret it later down the line!
Another important element when it comes to your blog is the design. The way everything looks on the page will either draw a reader in or put them off, so it’s something that absolutely crucial to get right. You can buy premade templates online that are easy to install, or you could enlist the help of a web designer who will create something just for you which looks beautiful and professional. An illustrator or designer would put together a gorgeous header for you, there are lots of talented people on sites like Etsy. This gives your blog a unique look which helps to set it apart while still looking polished. Everything should be laid out well, there shouldn’t be too many ads cluttering up the page, and all of your content should be easy to find. Social media links, an about page and a search bar should all be easy to find. You need to make it beautiful to look at and intuitive for your readers.
The most important thing with any blog is great content. It should be unique (not copied from anywhere else online) written with passion and personality and provide something useful to the reader. Split up your content into paragraphs with subheadings, so it’s easy to read, and be proof read. You could use a grammar checker like Grammarly to ensure that everything is written correctly, which provides more helpful hints to improving your writing than a basic spell check. One tip you could try is don’t write and publish your content on the same day. Write a post and save it to drafts, then the next day go back and read it with fresh eyes. It’s far easier to spot mistakes that way, and you just ensure that every piece you publish is as good as it can possibly be.
While it’s great content that will attract and audience and keep them coming back for more, it’s the images that will draw them in. Ideally you will take your own beautiful photos, use a DSLR camera and a good editing program to create the best pictures possible. Whenever it’s not possible to take your own, there are great free photos on sites like Pixabay and Pexels. You can use them freely without even needing to give credit. Make images large on the page, don’t make readers click on small images to see them full size. Make it as convenient as possible, and make each of your blog posts pop by using a stunning, large and clear image.
Follow the steps above, and you will make your blog as attractive as it can be to sponsors. When companies are looking for bloggers to work with for paid content you are more likely to be chosen. As most of your income as a blogger will come from sponsors, this is important. However, there are other things you can do too to make money. Google Adsense, for example, will pay a small amount of money every time someone clicks on your ads, and there are other affiliate schemes out there too. These pay a percentage to you if someone buys through an ad or link on your site. Sign up to sponsored post websites too, you can sometimes apply for sponsored posts and will be accepted to write them if your blog matches the client’s criteria.
Building up a blog with a good following takes time. You can’t just set up a blog, quit your day job and hope for the money to come rolling in, it takes a lot of time and dedication to get it to this stage. If you start a blog purely to earn money, you will be disappointed, since it takes hundreds of hours of time and commitment to get to a stage where you’re earning money. But if you’re in it because you’re passionate about blogging and the topics you’re speaking about, it’s very possible to earn a decent income from it.
Are you an established blogger looking to turn your website into a full time job? What steps are you taking to go about this?