Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Blogging 101 How to Write a Blog



Anyone can write a blog for free using a publishing platform with free hosting like Blogger or Wordpress.   I started with free accounts with Blogger and Wordpress and after trying them both out I decided to use Blogger exclusively.


Trying a free publishing platform is an easy and cheap way to see if you like blogging.

Now that you have a publishing platform, start writing!  Write about something that you are interested in and write regularly. I try to add a new blog post once a week, but some people write daily.

OK, so you decide you like blogging and you want to earn money from it. Here are a few ways you can make money with your blog:
  • Sign up for Google Adsense, pay per click ads, no check yet :( please support this blog by clicking on the ads or visit my Etsy store, my website, All Things Blooming .   
  • Sign up for Affiliate Ads.  There are many companies that act as a liaison for advertisers.  If someone makes a purchase after clicking a link on your blog, you receive a small percentage from that sale or pay per click.  I removed my affiliate links because they were no longer generating money.  At Rakuten LinkShare I recently recieved a check for $7 (June, 2015, yay!) and $1.02 (April 2016, woohoo!, lol). With shareasale.com last year I  received 2 checks one for $85.01 and the second was $50.  After the second check I received no commissions for the remainder of the year.  With Share a Sale, my payment threshold was $50 and took 2-5 weeks to receive a check. I also had an affiliate ad for If Only on my blog that was supposed to pay $100; really disappointed that they did not pay it, so I removed it from my blog. 
  • Become an Amazon affiliate (haven't made any money yet)
  • Other offers
Some people recommend buying a domain name and webhosting as the first step in blogging.  For me, I wanted to try blogging  without paying any money up front.  This week, to celebrate my one year cooking blog anniversary I decided to take the plunge and buy a domain name and webhosting.

I purchased my domain name and web hosting with GoDaddy, but I am still able to use Blogger as a publishing platform.  How does it work? I log into my Blogger dashboard and everything still looks and functions the same. Except now when I publish a blog post my blog automatically gets redirected to my dedicated domain name.

Getting Blogger to communicate with Godaddy was the hardest part of setting up my new domain name.  I used a Blogger tool from Godaddy to redirect my blog, but since it was not working, I had to log into my Godaddy account and add a cname server.  Then when that information was entered, I had to tell Blogger to redirect my blog to my new domain name. Sounds confusing, but I just followed the directions from Blogger and everything turned out fine.

If you do not want to use Blogger, you can choose to hire a web designer or if you know how to code you can design your own website and/or blog. 


Now it's time to network your blog:
Submit your blog to search engines like Google, Yahoo (Bing) and Safari.
Technorati is a blog directory, sign up to claim your blog and network.
Participate in online forums and other blogs by leaving comments or writing articles or guest blogging.  (something I need to work on too).  Be active in social media by setting up a facebook account, twitter, vine, google+ etc.

ORIGINAL CONTENT.  My blog stats have been declining recently because I have been copying and pasting affiliate ads that my sponsors send me.  Oh my, what a mistake and here is what I discovered: Google's new logarithm will penalize you for having content that is repeated, because your content is not relative and your entire blog content will be penalized by not being found in the search engine.  OUCH! That was a hard lesson to learn.  I went through my blog posts today and rewrote some sponsored posts to be all original content.  I will be checking my stats and also adding new content as I have time. 

PHOTOGRAPHY, photography, photography....I've seen the best recipes ruined and the simplest recipes made spectacular by one simple thing, a great photo. Editing photo's and adding information like a title just got alot easier!  A huge thank you goes out to Lisa from Wine and Glue for sharing the free photo editing website she uses, picmonkey.


My two most recent blog posts, one using picmonkey editing and one without. 

Picture edited with picmonkey
Picture without editing


No question about it, the photo edited with picmonkey looks better! 

SEO is for you too.  SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.  There are several tools you can use to analyze your blog statistics.  I use my Blogger dashboard, and Google Analytics with my Adsense account.  I can see what search terms are being used to find my blog, and what source and posts get the most traffic.  With this information in mind, I can write posts that target readers.  Adding labels, key words or tags to all of your posts help people find your blog.

Will you make money?  Possibly, but it takes time.  I've been blogging for about two years and finally received a check from Share a Sale for $85.01.  Each week my Adsense balance grows a little bit; Adsense requires your balance to be $100 before they issue a check, and I am at about the 3/4 mark, lol. 

And, that's where I am in my real life blog journey.  I will update with more realistic info as my blogging journey unfolds.  Until then, leave a comment, I would love to hear about your family favorite recipes or your blogging experience.

SPAM COMMENTS: some people get paid to advertise for businesses or bloggers by leaving generic comments, this is called spam content.  Spam comments are not beneficial or helpful and will be deleted.


Check back for updates, I'll keep you posted of what's working or not working for me.  Bye for now, and thanks for stopping in :)

Update:  Very helpful blogging articles from Etsy, Etsy's Guide to Blogging
and Lisa's Blogging Tips for Beginners

I Recently retired from my wedding flower business to pursue a career as the happy hat maker.  Please visit my Etsy shop at
All Things Blooming

and my webstore
All Things Blooming

Thanks for stopping by, and check back for updates.













3 comments:

  1. Blog writing is the best option for search engine optimization. While writing the blog care must be taken to select relevant and interesting topics. And always update the blog with new articles.

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    Replies
    1. Good points, thank you Thanusree Dev

      Delete
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