How to Start a Free Blog for 2019
Follow these 6 steps to learn how to create your own blog:
Pick a blog name
Emphasize what your blog posts will be about with a creative name.
Choose your blog template
Customize the design of your blog to match your style.
Start writing posts
Use your unique tone and voice to share your expertise.
Connect your domain
Get online with a domain name that makes it easy for people to find you.
Publish posts and go live
Launch your blog with posts you’re passionate about.
Share your posts
Engage with followers by sharing blog posts and replying to comments.
1. Why you should Create a Blog
Before you learn how to create a blog, it’s important to understand why you should create a blog.
A blog is a space where you can share your knowledge or thoughts with others. It can be a standalone website or an extension of your main site. Whether it’s for your business or yourself, a good blog can help position your brand as an industry leader, and establish stronger ties with your readers and customers.
Establish your expertise
Blogging is an effective way to show what sets you apart from others in your field. Include practical, actionable advice or share the step-by-step methods on how to get something done, and readers will come to recognize you and your blog as an authority.
Improve your SEO and drive traffic to your site
When ranking websites one of the things Google looks for is fresh, relevant content. Since a good blog is regularly updated with valuable content, it’s more likely to rank high in search results, so it’s easier to find online. If you’re using your blog to send people to your website, your blog’s high ranking can help bring you more visitors.
Understand your audience and answer questions
Blogs are a great way to initiate conversations with your customers. Responding to comments and questions on your blog can tell you what your customers like and what they’re looking for. This can include anything from feedback on your product to common questions about your company.
2. How to Create a Content Strategy for Your Blog
Part of learning how to start a blog includes developing a blogging strategy, before you start writing. A clear strategy helps you stay organized and create focused, value-driven content.
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Step 5: Expand Your Career
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Optimize your content to get found on Google
Search Engine Optimization, commonly referred to as SEO, is the process of optimizing your content in order to increase your chances of appearing high in results in Google. To give yourself the best shot at success, start thinking about your blog’s SEO before you start writing your posts.
How to Choose the Perfect Adventure
Start by browsing different places and find the ones that match your styles. Decide if you want a more extreme environment or a relaxing one.
Google ranks your blog based on keywords and phrases. These are words, or groups of words, that match the search terms (or “queries”) that people enter into Google. The more relevant keywords and phrases you use in your blog, the more likely your target market will find you.
Pick a few key phrases to focus on and use them throughout articles in your blog. Integrate these key phrases into the titles of your blog posts, in the texts you write and as alt text for images. The more you use your keywords and phrases in a logical and natural way, the more Google will associate these words with your blog and the more likely you are to appear in relevant search results.
Use diverse content
Blogging is a great way to share diverse, visual content. Visitors are far more likely to read, share and engage with visual content, which can significantly increase traffic to your site. Visual content, in the form of images, gifs, animation or videos, is increasingly important in online marketing.
Consider breaking up blocks of text with images and/or videos. The visual content should be related to your business and support what you are saying in your post. You want to post original, high-quality images and video, whenever possible. Be sure to include compelling visuals when you post your blog on social media or promote it through email marketing.
Develop your own voice and style
Creating a blog with a unique tone of voice is essential in connecting to your readers. When people identify with your writing, they’re likely to read more.
THE ADVENTURES AND MISADVENTURES
We are the 3monkeys. We jump, walk, run, swim, and flew from places to places from the fascinating tropics to enchanting snow.
Choose the language and images you use in your blog based on your brand. Use consistent language throughout all your blog posts and make them easy to read and understand––don’t use jargon or confusing terms.
To help maintain consistency throughout your posts, create your own style guide. Make a list of adjectives that describe the tone and voice you’re trying to convey, like ‘honest’, ‘quirky’ or ‘intellectual’.
Plan out your blog post topics
As you strategize how to start your blog, continue to think about your target audience. This group of people reads your blog because they’re interested in your thoughts or the advice you give on a particular topic. Write valuable content on this specific topic and your target audience will come back and read your other posts.
To ensure focus and consistency in your blog, it’s a good idea to plan blog post topics ahead of time. Keep a bank of ideas that you can refer to whenever you have a moment of inspiration.
How do you find topics?
Think about your customers’ most common questions and try to answer those questions in a blog post. Blogs that address frequent concerns, or debunk popular misconceptions in your field can be interesting to read.
Ask your readers what they want to read. Chat with people in your business or ask your online followers for their input. You may even want to send out a survey or poll to learn more about what topics interest your readers. When you go directly to the source, you can find ideas that you know your customers will want to read about.
Tell a story. About you, about a friend or about your business. Stories are engaging and show off your personal side. Plus, they make for great reading
Spice up your blog with posts that focus on videos or images. If you’re a personal trainer, show a video demonstrating your routine. Are you an artist? Write a post that shows the process you use to create your work. You can also write posts that center around a chart, infographic or relevant cartoon.
Write great blog post titles
Your blog post title has significant impact in getting new readers interested in your blog, convincing your subscribers to read your latest post and improving your ranking on Google. The title is the first thing to appear in search results and readers will use the title to determine whether or not they’re interested in reading your post.
Here are a few tips on writing blog titles that will attract your readers:
Create numbered lists
For example “6 Reasons Biking is Good For Your Relationship”.
Use top 10 (or 5 or 13) lists
Best, worst, funniest etc…Strong adjectives attract attention (“7 Best Hikes on Long Island”).
Keep SEO in mind
When possible, include at least one of your keywords or key phrases in your title.
Keep your title under 9 words. If you want to optimize for Google, your titles should be less than 70 characters long.
Write titles that are clear and reflect the content in your post.
Being specific can help establish your authority. For example, “How I Completed My First Triathlon in 3 Hours and 28 Minutes”.
“How to” posts
“How to” posts can provide helpful information and attract more readers to your blog. For example, “How to bake the best soft cookies”.
Determine the length of your blog posts
Aim for a minimum of 300 words per post but keep in mind that longer posts have a better chance of performing well. Longer posts of 1500-2000 words can allow you to explore a topic in depth and are more effective at establishing your expertise, plus they have a better chance at being shared on social media. Regardless of length, the most important thing is to publish high-quality posts frequently.
Ready to write?
Now that you’ve got a strategy, goal, and target audience, and you’ve found your own unique voice, it’s time to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and start writing. Open up a new document and start hashing out your first blog post.
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3. How to Set Up Your Blog
It's finally time to choose a great platform for your blog. With the right Blog you can create a stunning, professional blog for you or your business. Get set up in minutes and find all the tools you need to customize your blog’s style and brand and get online and available for the world to read.
There are about a million travel blogs out there. Okay, that number is completely random and totally made up, but you get the point. You will not stand out by writing about travel. You’ll need to go more specific than that. I knew this, but it took me a long time to stop fighting the obvious: that I should create detailed travel itineraries as travel planning is where my expertise lies.
You know you’ve found your thing when you can summarize what your travel blog is about in one sentence. 3monkeytravels? It’s the travel blog for the family and culturally curious who love to travel independently.
Pick a blog template or add a blog to your website
Choose a Starting Point
If you don’t yet have a website, create one with Wix.com. You’ll find hundreds of fully-customizable template designs, including dozens with the Wix Blog already built in. You can also design a blog with Wix ADI. Just answer a few simple questions and Wix ADI will create a blog for you, tailored to your specific needs.
Add a Blog to Your Current Website
You can also add a blog to an existing Wix website. Just add the Wix Blog from the App Market.
Customize the design
Tailor the design of your blog page to fit your needs and brand. To do so, select your blog in the Wix Editor and click Settings. Here you can change the layout and customize the design, including your font, background color and menu design. When it comes to fonts, pick one that fits the look and feel of your site.
Give your blog a name
An ideal name should reference your business, what your business does or what your blog posts will be about. Choose a name that fits the tone and brand of your business and your subject matter.
For inspiration or ideas, take a look at your list of keywords. These words can help you think about the main ideas that you want to emphasize in your blog. Plus, Google will love it if you include keywords in your blog name.
Before deciding on your name, do a quick search online to see if the name, or a similar one, has already been taken.
To add your blog’s name:
Go to the Wix Editor and click on Menus & Pages
Select your blog and click the Show More button
Click Rename and enter the name of your blog
Get web hosting
Web hosting is what makes your blog and all its content visible on the Internet. With Wix, you get free, secure hosting as soon as you publish your blog or website. There’s no need for installation and you’ll automatically get 500MB of cloud storage and 500MB bandwidth. You can always upgrade to get more storage space.
Connect your domain
Your domain is your address on the Internet. It’s what people type into their browser to get straight to your website. With Wix, you can connect a domain you already own or purchase a new one.
When possible, choose a domain that includes your business name and ideally one of your keywords about you or your business. Choose one that’s simple to spell and easy to remember so your readers can easily find your blog and tell their friends where to find it.
To purchase your own domain:
Go to your site dashboard to connect a domain
Choose to buy a new domain
Search for a domain and select one that’s available
Pick a registration period and fill out your info
Choose public or private domain registration
Add your payment details and redeem your 1 year free domain voucher
Add your first post
Now you’re ready to add your first blog post! Open your Blog manager and click ‘Create New Post’. Add your content and customize the look with images, videos and more.
Including a Call To Action (CTA) can help readers understand what to do next after reading your blog post. Include at least one clear intention, like subscribing to your mailing list, and make it simple for them to do it. Popular CTAs include ‘Subscribe’, ‘Create an Account’ or ‘Download My eBook’
Customize your SEO title and description
Now it’s time to use your keywords to show readers and search engines what your blog post is about. You’ll do this by adding an SEO title and description. Your title appears at the top of Google search results when someone enters a search phrase. Keep it under 60 characters long and include the name of your blog. Your description appears below your title and should summarize what your blog is about. According to SEO best practices, you should try to keep it under 160 characters.
Writing good titles and descriptions
As you write your SEO title and description, make sure you accurately describe what your blog is about and integrate your keywords in a natural way. The titles and descriptions should be easy to understand and will encourage readers to come from Google to your blog.
To add an SEO title and description to a blog post:
Go to the Wix Editor and click Blog on the left.
Select Manage Posts and click Edit next to a blog post.
Inside your blog post click Post Settings and then click the SEO tab.
Edit the unique URL for your blog, add an SEO title and description.
Take a look at the preview to see how your post will appear on Google.
When you’re happy with your text, hit Save & Publish.
Structure your blog
Once you’ve added a few posts to your blog it’s good to think about your blog’s structure. A well structured blog makes it easy for your readers to navigate and may even increase the time they spend reading. For example, you can add recent or featured posts to showcase your favorite blog posts.
You can also set up categories and hashtags. These will make your blog easier for readers to navigate. Categories are used to organize large groups of posts with a similar topic. For example, if you have food blog, you could create a ‘recipes’ category. Each category in your blog should eventually be associated with a minimum of 10 or 20 posts.
Hashtags describe a post more specifically based on your keywords. As you write your blog posts, aim to tag each of your posts with 5 to 15 hashtags.
Create a publishing schedule
Integrating blogging into your regular weekly or monthly schedule can help ensure that you keep your blog updated regularly. Set a realistic goal for yourself––blog as often as you can, but don’t try to “bite off more than you can chew.” Once you’ve decided how often you want to blog, set a posting schedule for yourself.
On average, blogs get the most amount of traffic on Monday mornings, while blogs published on Thursdays are shared the most.
4. How to Promote Your Blog
Congratulations! You’ve published your first blog post. The next step is to make sure your post is seen. Promote your blog through social media, your newsletter, friends, family, colleagues, and more.
Share your blog on social media
Social media is a powerful tool for getting more people to read to your blog. Once you’ve published, share your post with everyone––share it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Reddit, LinkedIn or any other platform where you’re active. Ask your friends, family and colleagues to share your post.
Tips on using social media to bring more readers to your blog:
Share your blog posts
Post on all of your social media profiles each time you publish a new post in your blog. Make sure to include a link to the blog and a compelling image.
Posts with powerful images receive more clicks and comments. You can try posting a picture of the day (both on your blog and on social media). You may also want to create videos. If you have a food blog, for example, you can create video of you making making one of your recipes.
Post in groups
Encourage readers to share your posts
Find relevant groups where you can post your blog entries. Think about who would be interested in reading a specific post and then seek out large groups of people in this niche in groups on Facebook or LinkedIn.
Have your readers help you spread the word! Be sure all of your posts are shareable by including prominently placed share buttons within your blog. And don’t be shy. Ask your readers to share posts they enjoyed and to comment about them on their own social media sites.
Comment like crazy!
Look for places where people in your industry or your potential customers are the most active. This can include other blogs, forums and large social media sites. Then, become an active participant. Write professional, engaging comments and always include a link to your blog.
Link to your blog everywhere
Every link to your blog increases your chances of attracting new readers. Plus, high-quality links are great for your SEO.
Here’s a list of places where you can create links to your blog:
On your website
Link to your blog from your website’s homepage and from other relevant pages on your site. You should also include a ‘Subscribe’ button on your blog to help grow your mailing list.
If you write a post that relates to one you’ve written in the past, you can send your readers to those posts with a link. This will help readers find other posts that interest them and keep them on your site.
Your email signature is the block of text under your name that you can include on every email you send. Consider adding a link to your blog in your signature to attract more readers.
The Internet is packed with free directories for blogs. (A quick trip to Google will help you find them.) Try to submit your website to at least 25-50 relevant directories.
Include a link to your blog on any of your print materials, like your brochures or business cards.
Stay in touch with your readers
As your blog grows, gather a list of readers and their email addresses––these are your subscribers. You can then market your business and deliver your latest blog posts directly to their inbox.
Wix offers great tools to stay in touch with your subscribers and fans:
Add a subscriber sign up
Include a clear place where readers can subscribe to get an update every time you post a new blog.
Analyze your blog's performance
To see if your blog is growing, start by looking at how many views each post receives and how much readers engage with each one. Do people comment on your posts? How many people have subscribed to your blog? Has this number increased since you started blogging?
Next, see if your blog has led to an increase in online orders, phone calls, emails or visits to your store. When new customers contact you, order from your store or come to your business, try to learn how they found you. This information can help you assess the impact of your blog and how you can improve.
Use Google Analytics to understand your performance
Google Analytics is a powerful, free tool that can provide an incredible amount of data about your blog. You can connect any Premium Wix site to Google Analytics to get the following information:
How many people have visited your blog?
Are visitors clicking from your posts to other pages on your website?
How long (on average) are they spending on each post?
Which posts are most popular?
Who is linking to your blog?
How do people find your blog?
Once you’ve analyzed your blog from a few different angles, you should get a sense of what’s working and what isn’t. This will help you understand how you can improve your blog, where you should focus your energy and how you can tailor your posts to match what your readers are looking for.
Learn how you can monetize your blog.
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Creating a successful blog takes dedication and time. With the right strategy, platform and the promotion tools, you can create a successful blog that delivers value and promotes your brand and business