Most people would like to have a blog that has a dot com name rather than the name of the actual provider i.e., WordPress, Blog, etc. This is where domain name registration comes in at, you simply register a domain for about $12 bucks a year and reroute (DNS) that domain name to your hosting company. For those that don’t know what (DNS) is; Domain Name System is the way the distributed naming system for computers and services. It translates IP Addresses with domain names.
You can actually run a blog from an entirely free service and never have to worry about hosting your blog. However, it’s a sense of professionalism and trust in blogs that are hosted with their own dot com name and running from an independently hosted servicer. I would recommend getting a hosting company to host your blog, one that is friendly for your blogging platform. If this is not your area of expertise, there are video tutorials that will help you through the process step-by-step.
Free Platforms Like WordPress
Again I can see you asking; how do I blog? Well, there are a few free blogging platforms on the Internet like blogger, Tumblr, blog, Jux, WordPress, Posterous Spaces and Weebly. Some are better than others and to pick one is usually a matter of your personal preference. However, I’ve used a couple of them and would most definitely recommend WordPress because of its versatility and functionality. There are a few sites that are offering video tutorials that tells you everything you need to know about WordPress from set up, themes, plug-ins, affiliate marketing and much, so I wouldn’t worry to much about knowing what to do here.
Use Headlines Effectively
Imagine writing the best article you ever wrote in your life, only to have absolutely no one read it. Most of us never really think that the title is that important. We usually relate the title to something that has to do with the article and by far, that is the way to go. However, you need to make it compelling enough for your reader so that they will actually click on it to engage in your article. Before you formulate your headline, do a keyword search to find out how many competing websites are targeting those keywords; you can use phrase like “How Do I Blog?” Try to look for fewer websites that are actually targeted your phrase. If you have 900 million websites targeting a particular keyword or phrase, it’s extremely hard if not impossible, being new at blogging that you’re actually going to move up to the top of any search engine.
Have a Great Blog Design
When you first design your website, try to make an appealing website because you want people to not only read your content but indulge in the appearance of your website as well. I’ve been to some websites that look horrible and it doesn’t take me long to move on to another website. Most websites that are disgusting in appearance only holes a person’s interest for three seconds or so. Not a lot of time to read any content so you get the drift at this point don’t you?
Leverage Social Media
Social media is a very big deal these days, just look at the young kids walking around with their cell phones crossing the street looking down and never look up. Most of them are texting or chatting on Facebook or some other social network media. When you start targeting Facebook and other social network media such as Pin, Tweeter, LinkedIn and others. Try not to just overwhelm them with all sorts of marketing. Remember, most of these people are your friends and family and they going to simply ignore your post. A post here and there of interest will get them moving along the way, and it will also get them to like your website and start promoting it on their wall.
Identify Your Niche
Discover what your interest are and what you would enjoy writing about. This is nothing worse than having to write about something you can’t stand. If you choose a topic that you don’t enjoy, you’re not going to write very much, and as a matter of fact, you’re going to fizzle out in about three months. A blog is nothing more than a diary and needs continuous updates. For some of us, we were little kids and we had a little diary that every day we would write something in it. Well, your blog is nothing more than just that. Except for, you can choose to write things in it every day or every week but whatever schedule you put yourself on, make sure it’s consistent.
Now that you found your passion it’s time for you to do some Keyword Research. There’s really no point in writing without targeting keywords that people are not searching on. Use a search engine like Google and target a particular word. Google has a keyword tool that you can use to target particular words or phrases. These will tell you just how many people are searching on those keywords. From there, you need to determine how many websites actually have those keywords. It’s not very hard to do from this point all you need to do is put your keyword or phrase in quotes and that will tell you just how many websites actually have those keywords. Find keywords that average around 50,000 searches per month which is a little over 1600 searches a day on that particular keyword. If you only get 10% traffic to your website, that’s 166 potential customers per day; that’s a great start.
No links, no visibility. It’s great to write good content and wish that everyone will just find it. But the truth is, you must have authority websites link to your site in order for your reading to find you. The way to go about doing this is to find yourself some good article directories and start writing to become an expert in your niche. You can also use other blog sites that do not restrict the links and link back to your own website or article. To find yourself high ranking article websites just type in Google “high ranking article directories” and it should come back with a list of the top 50 article directories. This will give you a good starter as you sort your order by page ranking so that you know which ones rank at the top. Pick yourself a good starting point like let’s say, five ranking. Anybody under five you will just ignore and use any authority website that has a ranking of five or above.
This may not seem like a big deal but blog comments go a long way to link back to your website. If you align yourself with a good high ranking blog that permits you to enter your signature as a blog link back to your site, then you’re in business. As you become more of an expert on that blog, people will start to follow those links right back to your site. Not only that, the search engines will also follow those links and you will get a higher ranking on the search engines. So every chance you get try to increase your blog comments.
A Weber seems to be the big honcho an email responding services. I believe they cost around $19 a month or something along those lines. However, an email list is extremely crucial to your blog. There’s nothing better than having an email list of subscribers that are interested in exactly what you have to offer. Once you become an authority in your area, your subscribers are interested in what you have to say and the offers you make to them. Now, don’t always put out something that cost them money you have to give them good free stuff as well. The problem here is setting up an auto responder that has substance. Again, you can’t just spew all out junk, you generally have to offer something of value, like let’s say a free e-book or some educational information that has to do with your blog.
Pinging Servers actually promote your blog; they create list of a variety of blogs that have new material. Blog search engines can provide fresh results very quickly by polling only the newly-updated blogs. WordPress actually comes with a ping service as a default. However, there are tons more that you can actually load to your WordPress blog and have it ping every time your blog has been updated.
Social Bookmark Links
Social bookmarks are great services that offer bookmark sharing. The service is merely save the bookmark and share that as a resource. There are some services that allow for treating of bookmarks and this helps to get the word out.
AdSense and ClickBank Ads
Although when you first start your blog it’s usually not a good idea to plaster a ton of advertisements all around it. Most readers get sick and tired of a tone of advertisements anyway. However, you may want to at least look into Google AdSense as a way of getting paid for allowing advertisements on your website when your traffic starts to grow to maybe 5000 users a day. Now, click bank is something that you could use in your current articles. So when you first start up and write an article about something; let’s say, electronics. You may want to pick a particular electronic and then link to your affiliate link which goes to ClickBank so that when your reader clicks on that to get more information and they purchase a product you received some type of commission.
Learn About Marketing
Anyone can put up a blog, but not everyone knows how to market it. This is key and this is the truth, you need to learn how to market your blog. There are a lot of things to learn and a lot of phrases you hear on the Internet about search engine optimization, keyword marketing, article marketing, lead generation and much more. All of these terms are pertinent to the growth of your blog and you need to know something about them. Granted, a lot of these things can be extremely overwhelming but you should have a fairly decent grasp on each of them. Especially if you’re going to be running the blog by yourself.
Fix Broken Pages
Go through each and every one of your pages to check for broken links. Broken links can definitely send a bad signal to the search engines and that would be catastrophic. What you can do is look at your web hosting reports. These reports have pages that people have visited, search engine keywords used, linked pages and also your error reporting; broken links. This would be a great place to start because sometimes, you can miss links easily. If you find that there is a page or something that is not working correctly you can always put in a refresh page to send them to a root directory or somewhere else that’s not broken.
Don’t forget about protecting your blog. Although we’d love to think that everybody on the Internet is about business and finding good content and enjoying your website. Unfortunately, that’s not the case and there are some serious head cases out there. When we generally create our blog we concentrate so much on the look of it and its content along with the marketing, which we sometimes forget that spammers are out there looking to post hideous links. Make sure you have a reputable spam filter that will catch most of the reply Post that are inappropriate for your blog.
In my first week that my blog was up and running, someone already tried to spam my website with a link that went to an inappropriate site. The comment was something like, this is a very nice website with a link to their inappropriate site. The best way to defeat this is to not permit replies to be automatically posted so that you can check out the post for appropriateness before approving.
Blacklist are another useful tool to help control bad words in your replies. This is another area we need to perk up on and learn all about the word you do not want on your blog. There are several services that already use an array of blacklist terms and variations of foul words. You can get them from places like Google and Facebook along with a number of other large organizations that deal with this type of stuff on a regular basis. It would be a good idea to learn from their experience.