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How to start a blog and make over $100k a year with it [Step by Step Guide]

How to start a blog

You must have heard the lines from people that Online is the future. Big things are happening all around us. Nowadays many things are running online and people with some text, certain images that are know as blogs are the main source of income for many people. I’m gonna teach you step by step procedure to start a blog and then monetizing it massively.

Things might seem very nice and buttery from outside but the path is very thorny and it is hard to achieve success. Don’t be disheartened by this – Read further. I don’t know anything which can offer success on a silver plate to you. You have to work hard in order to achieve it, be it any field.

Today, let me tell you how to start a blog within few minutes which could help you fetch money – BIG MONEY.

Step 1 – Think of ideas from within

In order to start a blog, you don’t need any idea of a rocket science technology or idea which could change the world. Remember that your blog should be focused on one specific topic which we call as niche.

It need not to be unique and remember that no idea whatsoever is not 100% unique.

Surely you must be having something unique within you, any unique experience? good personality? distinct voice? Whatever it is. This will be the thing which will help you attract visitors to your blog.

Whenever I choose a blog niche, I ask 2 questions standing in front of the mirror.

Q 1.) Do I love reading about the topic?

I have seen many people who start the blog just for the sake of making money. But your readers will definitely come to know from your writing style that you don’t love the topic.

Whatever topic you pick, you should know it and love it. You should be always curious about the same.

Think about something which your friends and family always take advice from you. For me it is Marketing, Entrepreneurship and Technology. You know the best for yourself. Do some introspection.

Q 2.) Is there any audience for that topic?

Like to someone young who is in his 20s might think that he is the only one obsessed with knitting but do a quick web search and see there are many other too.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

How to Start a blog – Utkarsh Wadhwa

You might feel that your idea is too broad or very eccentric. But don’t live on assumptions, do a quick search.

If someone has the idea or interest to start a travel blog then don’t go that broad you’ll face too many difficulties. Choose a micro-niche like trekking or hiking.

If you choose a micro-niche then it will be very easy for you to manage because of less competition.

Step 2 – Get picks and shovels for your blog

Start a blog - Utkarsh WadhwaThe first thing you have to think is the name of your blog. This is the area where you can show your creativity but be generic and try for short and crisp name which could easily be remembered by people.

Next you need some resources.

First is your domain name. For example – utkarshwadhwa.com Domain name will cost you somewhere around $11-12/year and could be cheaper. There may be the time when you are not able to find your favorite domain name so you could look for a similar name. Get domain from NameCheap. I must say this company is really great. I have even bought domain of 0.77$/year. You’ll get cheap domains when bought through my link. It might take some time for you to find the domain and hosting but really that matters a lot in business.

Second you need is a web hosting. Web hosting is something which host your domain. By hosting, I mean this is the place where your blog or website would be stored on the web server and will be accessed through that.

Without web hosting, no one will see anything on your blog because it won’t be live online and without a domain name your blog is not even online. I know it is getting complicated and whenever I come upon anything complex, I explain it with an example.

Suppose you decide to start a offline bakery shop. So, the name of the shop is the domain name and the location you decide to setup the shop is the web hosting. I guess it is clear now.

There are countless number of web hosting ranking from $3 to $1100/month.

If you are starting a new blog, I would strongly recommend you HostGator. This is the most famous player in the market and offers you hosting at $3.95/month. That’s pretty low, hmm….

Don’t run after anything fancy hosting out there in the market because in the starting you won’t have that much traffic on your blog so you can use this up to 20k to 25k visitors per month. Scalability is very easy once you touch that number per month. You just have to do 2-3 clicks and your plan will be upgraded.

 I asked them for some special offer and they gave me a coupon for 25% discount only for my audience. Get the HostGator hosting from my link and use the coupon code “UW25” and you’ll get a 25% discount.  

Remember some of the tips while purchasing the domain and hosting:-

  1. If you want to make up your own brand then you should choose your own name as your domain For eg. utkarshwadhwa.com
  2. Get something catchy and attractive
  3. Avoid domain names with number thing like utkarsh4577.com, these are hard to remember
  4. Mostly all single word domain have been taken so aim for 2-3 word domain. The shorter, the better it is.
  5. Always choose dot com (.com) domains if you want a global reach.
  6. Do some keyword research about your niche so that you could get that domain. Let’s suppose, you want a hiking blog then hiking.com type domain could do wonders and fetch you lots of revenue.

There is one more hosting which i have used and will recommend is BlueHost. That is at $3.95/month. So, choose anyone from the two options. Both have good support, which is the most important thing. When I started, I used to eat their head all the time regrading some or the other thing. The best part part was they always solved my problems.

Step 3 – Installing the WordPress Software

Let me tell you one thing that you don’t need to code for developing websites. I run all my blogs on WordPress software.

Even if you are not that technically sound you can install WordPress within 5 minutes.

I hope that till now you have got your domain from NameCheap and hosting from BlueHost or HostGator, you first have to change the name servers of NameCheap.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Just login to your hosting >> Copy the name-servers >> Go to NameCheap account and paste the name servers in the column seen in the above image. Select the custom DNS and paste the name servers there.

The steps will remain same for all hosting accounts just the interface will change a little. Now you have to click “Install WordPress”. I am demonstrating on BlueHost account.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

How to Start a blog – Utkarsh Wadhwa

Select the “Do it yourself” version and you’ll be good to go. Click on install.

BlueHost Install WordPress - Utkarsh Wadhwa

After you click Install the below screen will appear. Then select your domain and press check domain. Your domain will appear here if you entered it while making BlueHost account. If not then you need to add a domain from a CPanel.

BlueHost Install WordPress - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Now their terms and conditions will appear. Check the box and click Install.

BlueHost Install WordPress - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Now, your blog should be fully functional and you would be able to access the wp-admin panel of your website.

If you face any difficulty then contact your hosting support and they will help you. This is the reason why I always recommend BlueHost or HostGator. There support is simply awesome.

 Step 4 – Designing your Blog

In the Internet marketing world, ready made designs of website are known as themes.

When you will visit your website right now, your website should look something like this.

Start a website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

It is a very basic design so make sure you choose something which is trendy and looks nice. Don’t spends days and weeks choosing your theme because you could be trapped in that only. Resulting in none actions taken.

You can choose a theme from Themeforest. They offer great variety. I personally choose from there.

It will take hardly 5 minutes to upload the theme from the appearance tab in your wp-admin panel.

You’ll be able to access the wp-admin panel using “http://www.yourdomainname.com/wp-admin/.

Here you have to enter your credentials that you made during WordPress install.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

WordPress looks very complex at first but you’ll be accustomed to it once you start exploring it.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In order to install a theme, you have to go to Appearance >> Themes >> Add New

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Although, WordPress already come up with their theme (For eg. twenty-Seventeen) but those themes are not good looking. We need themes which could easily catch the users attention.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Once you have your own Premium theme from Themeforest with you, Press “Add New” >> Upload the theme zip file >> Activate the Theme.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Let’s move on to the customizing part.

Step 5 – Customizing your Blog

When I talk about customizing your blog, the list is endless but for now I am only going to talk about the ones which are very essential.

For any WordPress blog, themes are the foundation of your business which you must have purchased from ThemeForest.

Now the next thing you have to do is setup some plugins like the Contact form, some sliders, add forum, add a support plugin if you are providing your own service. These might be present already depending on your theme.

First step out of all is going to “Appearance” tab >> Customize OR you could also click on the customize button after Activating the theme.

Don’t worry about the menu options on the left, they may vary. These menu options are dependent upon the theme you choose. We are only concerned about the “Site Identity” over here.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In the “Site identity” tab you can enter your Site Title and the tagline. You can also upload Site Icon and other stuff like that.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Optimizing for SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. For those who don’t know about SEO, In this we apply methods so that our website or webpage attain higher ranking in the Search Engines.

It is a very daunting task, I must say. WordPress makes the task little simpler. But don’t ever try to focus on the keyword stuff before hand. Your job as a blogger is to provide readable and cool content which is loved by your audience. If your content can’t help the audience or they are clueless after reading it then you are doing no good.

Try to bound your audience in your content so that they feel like you are just in front of them speaking these things.

The plugin which I use and suggest is “Yoast SEO”

Go over to the “Plugins” tab >> Add New

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In the search box, search for the “Yoast SEO” plugin and you will get the first result for that plugin.

Now you have to click on “Install Now” >> Activate

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

You are now good to configure this plugin. You will get two menu – One will be on the Sidebar and other will be on the top.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

From the SEO dashboard, go to “Your Info” and set your plugin up.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Here you have to enter your Website name and the alternate name you want. Make sure you identify yourself as a company or a person.

Now click on the “Save Changes”. Time to move on to the next step.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Next step is to move on to the “Webmaster Tools”. There you have to click on the Google Search Console. “Google Search Console” is a tool by Google which helps the site to be indexed by Google search engine and optimize the visibility of the site.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

You have to sign in to your Google account.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

You can select any of the methods listed in the screenshot below but easy one is the HTML tag so select that. HTML tag will be in the “Alternate Methods” tab.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

A new menu will appear and they will provide you with a meta tag. What you have to do is copy the alphanumeric code from that tag without the quotes.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Paste the code in the “Yoast SEO” Google Search Console space as seen below in the screenshot. Don’t forget to click the “Save Changes” button.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Now go back over to the Google Search Console tool for clicking Verify.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

I recommend investing some of your time exploring the Google Search console as it will provide you with tons of valuable data like keywords for which you are ranking, errors occurring on your blog, and the list goes on & on.

Now we have to go to the “General” tab in the SEO dashboard.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Now it’s time to optimize the blog with 10 steps that Yoast will take us on.

#1 step will a welcome screen that you have to skip.

In #2 step you have to choose the environment under which your site is operating. Most probably for all of us it will be the first option which is “Production”.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In Step #3, We’ll choose the site type. In that you have to select a blog and click Next.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

How to Start a blog – Utkarsh Wadhwa

In step #4, you have to select yourself as a person or a company. We already did this step so you can skip it.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In  step #5, you have to enter the social profiles if you have any. Fill the spaces and move forward. Click Next.

In step #6, default setting are fine to go with. Make sure that the “Post” is selected as Visible and the “Media” as hidden.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In step #7, you have to choose that your site has multiple authors or a single author. Based on that you can select the option. Don’t be confused, you can set this option whenever you want later.

In step #8, you will be allowing Yoast plugin to pull all the data from the Google Search console tool.

Just click on the “Get Google Authorization Code”.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

When you’ll click that button a new pop up will appear which will ask for the permission to access your “Google Search Console”. Click on the Allow button.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

In step #9, enter your website name.

The Title separator is type of a personal choice. This is a symbol which will be seen by Google searchers. For example, if you found this blog post in the Google Search Engine then it is like “How to Start a Blog and make over $100k a year with it [Step by Step] – Utkarsh Wadhwa”.

Whenever you are ready, click “Next”.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Finally, you will get a Congratulation message confirming that you have successfully optimized the settings.

XML Sitemaps 

This is the most important step in the Yoast settings and for whole SEO part because the XML file generated list all the URLs of your website.

This file will help Google and other search engines to crawl your website and post pages. Yoast has a built-in setting which automatically updates the post and pages URL in the XML file. You just have to click and forget.

Get over to the Features tab and in the Advanced settings page >> Click enabled.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

After doing all these steps new menu’s will start to appear on the sidebar under SEO tab. Go over to the “XML sitemaps”.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

Move to the “User Sitemap” tab and click it. The below screen will appear. Now you just have to Enable the “Author/User sitemap”.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

These are the essential settings which will get you going. There are endless customizations that you will understand as time passes and as you get familiar with all this stuff.

Setting up permalinks:

First you need to understand what are permalinks. Permalinks are the static hyperlinks which will be typed or clicked by user to reach to that particular page or post. By default WordPress has a post ID as the permalink. See the below screenshot.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

How to Start a blog – Utkarsh Wadhwa

The problem with this permalink is that no one will understand that the page which they are viewing is about which topic. Moreover, the permalink is not cool.

Let’s dive in to change the permalink.

In the left sidebar, hover the mouse cursor on the “Settings” tab. A new menu will appear so what you have to do is jump over to the “Permalink” option.

Start a Website - Utkarsh Wadhwa

There you will see many options but always select the “Post Name” option. The reason behind this is that it will clearly depict the post topic as well as it is short. There is a rule in SEO that “Shorter the Link URL structure, more is that strength of the Post” .

For instance, if there are 3 articles

1.) www.utkarshwadhwa.com/2017/10/archives/how-to-start-a-blog

2.) www.utkarshwadhwa.com/archives/how-to-start-a-blog

3.) www.utkarshwadhwa.com/how-to-start-a-blog

All the three URL points to the same website post but Google will give preference to the 3rd article.

How to Start a blog - Utkarsh Wadhwa

How to Start a blog – Utkarsh Wadhwa

Just save the settings after selecting and see it in action.

Congratulations! you are still with me. More than 80% people must have left my blog till now because they are procrastinators but you my friend is still with me. You’re a top 20% er.

You have purchased your domain name from NameCheap, Got hosting from BlueHost or Hostgator and Purchased you theme from Themeforest.

If not, stop reading right here and first purchase these stuff. Start a blog, customize it otherwise you’ll be left behind and I don’t want that. I want 100% success rate for my readers.

Now we are moving over to the most important part in blogging where most of the people face difficulty. Deciding what to write and how to write?

Let us dive in it.

Step 6 – Coming up with ideas or blog topics

Technically speaking, your blog is live and ready to put stuff in it.

But so many people ask me what they should write about, How to search  the topics? etc.

When I started online, I used to just share my personal experiences, my experiments, some success stories and that type of stuff.

Now I use a process which gets me blogging ideas. By following these steps you would be able to come up with ample amount of ideas.

Just take out a pen and paper and start writing it down.

In this exercise, you have to note down answers to the questions which I will ask you.

Q1.) What excites, fascinates or fire passion in my readers?

For eg.) As an Internet marketer, I am excited by numbers. What fascinates me is new strategies and marketing software which could automate my work. I’m passionate about blogging.

Q2.) What are the most common problems?

For eg.) Different Internet marketers may have different problems. It may be writing sales copies or driving sales or writing long piece of content or making complex sales funnels which could drive crazy sales.

Q3.) What character trait is very common?

For eg.) A very common trait among Internet Marketers is resources and ability to take risk.

Q4.) What do readers love about your niche?

For eg.) Internet Marketers love to work from anywhere and anytime.

Q5.) What do readers hate about the niche?

For eg.) Internet marketers hate being overwhelmed and waking up early in the morning.

I guess you got my point. Now to these 5 questions write atleast 7 answers to each question for the fields you like. For instance, for campers, hikers, golfers, etc.

If you have a eye for detail then each answer will give you a blog posting idea which you can begin writing.

Let me give you some examples which could be grabbed from the sample answers above.

Idea #1 >> What disappoints Internet marketers the most?

Idea #2 >> How Internet Marketers are the best among the crowd?

Idea #3 >> What keeps Internet Marketers going whole day?

Be as innovative as possible in writing your headlines. They need to be catchy and should draw visitors attention.

Step 7 – Monetizing the Blog

This is the last and the most important step in starting a blog.  I know that most of you might be dying to earn via blog.

My advice would be to start a blog and make it successful and then think of monetizing. By success, I don’t mean that you have to drive crazy traffic on it. Whenever you get visitors count to 100+. It is the right time to monetize it.

In the starting don’t think of launching your own product and trying to sell it because that won’t work as you don’t have the audience for that product. First build your audi audience

Blogging is all about maintaining relationship with your audience. Let me generalize it by saying that business run only because of people, who have interest in your brand or in you. That is why they buy from you.

To bound the audience, I always ask my audience something which compel them to comment.

Always Ask your audience

Blogging is all about maintaining relationship with your audience. Let me generalize it by saying that business run only because of people, who have interest in your brand or in you. That is why they buy from you.

To bound the audience, I always ask my audience something which compel them to comment below the post. You get to know a lot, when your readers comment and based on that you can select product for them.

There is a other way to make your mailing list strong and later send some surveys or Google forms asking them about their problems. From their problems you can look for solutions to the problems and pitch them.

You know why big brands develop their blog?? This is because via blogs these people can communicate with the audience. Listen to their problems, build more trust.

Suppose I ask my email list and my private group members, What is the biggest problem they face and 89% replied that they want a “Facebook Ads training”. Now I know where they face problems and I can build a Facebook Ads course for them (paid course).

Always remember one thing, “Never bluff your audience”. They are real people and will sense everything you are up to.

Earn with Advertisements

For some reason, if you don’t want to sell your coaching program or your service then what you can do is Ads.

You can put advertisements on your blog using “Google AdSense” program. Sign up for Google AdSense once you reach 100+ visitors per day or your blog is 6 months old, whichever is earlier.

But real money is in selling advertisement space to people or companies. They will pay you monthly. This will only happen when your blog have high traffic. What you have to do is put their banner on your website and continue your blog writing.

Money should never be the driving factor. Change your viewpoint. Think about catering the needs of the people who trust you and the money will come automatically.

To assimilate,

I would say that be cool, be adventurous and more importantly be yourself while writing because you are not dealing with bots.

They are real people.

You have all the things for getting started here. My friend, what are you waiting for ??

Take ACTION today and be successful. I know it is easy to start a blog (hardly takes 2-3 hrs) but making it successful demands lots of patience, hard work and determination.

The comment section is open for you guys. I would like to hear the people who have read till the end and how many people are up with me for climbing success ladders.

How many people are ACTION Takers here. Let me know below 🙂

” 80% of the people are Procrastinators, 20 % think about being successful. Out of these 20% people – 80% are always thinking and 20 % are the real ACTION TAKERS”

So my friend decide who are you??

Are you tired of your 9-5 Job?

Utkarsh Wadhwa

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