With the exponential growth in internet traffic over the last few years, blogging has become a viable option for beginners who want to share their random thoughts online or just have a passion for writing. While the blogging industry is growing rapidly in India, it is quickly transforming into a full-time career option also for youngsters these days.
This consolidated guide on ‘How to Start a Blog in India’ will run you through all the steps of the procedure. You don’t need to be a hardcore techie to own your blog. So let’s dive in and get to know the basics which will give you a fair idea of how to create a blog for free and make money as well.
Step 1: Speculate About What You’d Want to Blog About
Selecting your blogging ‘niche’ will define what your written content will primarily focus on. It could be related to beauty, skincare, personal finance, entrepreneurship, or any other subject that you find interesting and on which you’d be able to write quality blog posts on a sustainable basis.
Choosing your field can be affected by various underlying factors. It can be a decent mix of something you are passionate about, with content that you think will resonate with the audience. The list of topics to choose from is endless. Make sure to do proper research on all fronts before jumping in.
Step 2: Come up with a Blog URL
This can be regarded as one of the more crucial steps in setting up a blog. Some might find it really hard to settle on a name. And so, it makes sense to go with your gut feeling (reflexive thought), rather than getting fixated on what to call your blog.
While you can name it as you please, keep in mind that it is something that you and your target audience can identify with. It can also be easy to read if possible and also fall in line with the social media handles so that readers can easily find you online. Drawing parallels with your social media will draw significant traffic to your blog in the long run and create a personal connection with your readers.
Step 3: Choose an Appropriate ‘Self-Hosted’ Platform
While ‘Hosted’ platforms like WordPress and Squarespace, are the first thing that comes to mind when starting a blog, it should be noted that they have numerous consequences. The customization provided will be limited, you won’t have complete ownership of your blog as well as limited access to plugins. All of these make for a frustrating experience as a whole.
Instead, opt for ‘Self-Hosted’ platforms like Siteground and GoDaddy, to get complete control and ownership over your website, unlimited ways of monetization, access to plug-ins, and much other extensive range of features. However, there are some points that need to be taken into consideration while choosing a Self-hosting platform, such as a helpful support team, fast server speeds, and affordable start-up prices.
Once you have made up your mind about the platform that fits you best, go ahead and make your first investment towards owning your own blog.
Step 4: Pick a Theme and Have a Readers’ Email-List
After your account has been set up, choose a nice theme (layout) for your website. You can go for the free themes WordPress provides or you can purchase your own from sites like Hello You Designs.
Bear in mind that the themes should be easy on the eyes, and easier to navigate. They can be as decent and elegant as you desire. This is where your creativity comes in. Pick the one that is not too cluttered and customizable, at the same time.
Also, setting up an email list of your subscribers makes sense because you can then send out emails to them about new blog posts, newsletters, and much more, as and when you want to notify them. Rather than spamming them with emails on a daily basis, a weekly notification about the latest blog post, etc. will lead to a lesser unsubscribing rate by the receiver. Mailerlite helps provide a personal touch in your emails, which proves to be fruitful in the long run.
Step 5: Start Writing Quality Blog Posts
Come up with an efficient content schedule for the month or week, and stick to it as much as possible. This will ensure a constant flow of blog posts and also improve your website’s ranking on Google Search. Yoast SEO is one such plugin that will optimize your content for particular keywords, and keep you on the right track.
Achieving a decent ranking on google search might take some time and effort, but it’ll definitely be worthwhile. Try posting two to three times per week when you start, and you can increase the frequency of publishing blog posts according to your schedule. It is important to note that consistency is key in building substantial traction and that just knowing how to start a blog in India is not sufficient. Maintaining and optimizing your writing is what sets you up for success and returns in the near future.
Step 6: Drive Serious Traffic Towards Your Blog
Nobody will get to know about your blog unless you start promoting it effectively. After you’ve created and posted quality posts, and optimized them through SEO, you need to catch the attention of eyeballs via social media platforms. Build personal connections with your audience and engage with them to build long-lasting trust. Join Facebook groups having like-minded bloggers and score some extra daily views, by promoting your social media handles and blog posts.
Another major source of traffic explosion can be found in Pinterest. The platform provides a serious traffic boost if figured out properly. Learn to work through pins and boards on Pinterest, and the rise in views just might surprise you.
Use the power of Instagram to let the word out, and also attract some of your followers to your blog. Attach a link to your blog in your bio, and use the reach of IG stories to generate traffic. Incorporate the pertinent hashtags to expand the reach of your posts. A similar game plan can be applied on Twitter as well. Some ‘retweet’ accounts might retweet your new blog posts, helping you tap into their audience base as well.
Step 7: Monetize Your Blog
The very next thought after you’ve decoded how to start a blog in India, is how you can make money from it.
Advertisement programs like Google Adsense and Media Vine can be a legit source of income from your blog. The cash flow might be slow at first, but once you start receiving thousands of views per month, the amount will grow proportionately. Also, make sure to not stuff your website with tons of ads, as that will negatively impact the session-time a reader spends on your blog.
Another way of getting paid is through collaboration with PR wings of brands. They may send you their products for free or simply pay you to publish a blog post talking about their product. Sponsored posts are a considerable portion of a blogger’s income.
You can also offer social media services and/or blog coaching, once you think you have explored all avenues and can provide valuable guidance.
Affiliate marketing makes up another fraction of the blogger’s income. Basically, brands collaborate with bloggers and ask them to post product purchase links on their sites. When the reader/customer buys that product using that link, the blogger gets a small portion of the purchasing amount.
At first, glance, starting and running a blog might seem like a tedious task, considering the consistency and discipline it demands. But given the proper efforts in the initial years, it can turn out to be self-propagating machinery that will grow your brand and bank balance simultaneously, in the years that follow.