When you are trying to figure out how to start a blog you will be met with some hard choices to make.
Starting a new blog forces you to make a series of tough, critical decisions.
Nobody feels fully clear on this blogging journey. Discomfort arises when you are doing the legwork to pick your niche, your hosting, and your domain name.
If you patiently weigh through each decision you will start off on the right blogging foot, avoiding years of struggle in the process.
Making sound blogging choices:
- lays the foundation for a successful blog
- removes anxiety around the effectiveness of your blogging campaign
- aligns you with successful bloggers
- enables you to monetize your blog more easily
New and struggling bloggers should make these blogging decisions carefully and deliberately.
1: Picking Your Niche
The most critical blogging selection you will ever make is your choice of niche.
Do not follow the money.
Do not pick a niche you predict will move quickly.
These poor drivers either result in complete failure or muted, unenthusiastic success because each focuses on some specific outcome.
If you blog mainly to make money and have a tough time earning profits you will quit blogging because you lost your motivator quickly.
Pick a niche you feel passionate about. The passion you feel fuels your blogging journey.
You will enjoy studying your blogging niche, practicing your blogging skills, writing about the topic, befriending other like-minded bloggers from the niche. Traffic, money and social shares will feel like icing on the cake, or a bonus, or an extra. Taking this attitude sets you up to be a highly successful blogger in your niche.
While most other bloggers will trip over themselves chasing profits you will be learning, studying, creating and connecting, enjoying the ride and building your blog on granite-like fundamentals.
2: Select Your Domain Name
Pick an easy to imagine domain name.
Become memorable in the minds of your readers.
You think in pictures. If you can easily visualize a domain name you are likely to remember the website because the clever blogger did much of your thinking legwork for you.
Try to buy a short, sweet domain name. Avoid using long word combinations.
Always go with a .com domain name as most people automatically add this extension to your domain name.
The cleaner the name or phrase, the better.
Select a name fully aligned with your blogging niche to be congruent.
Consider choosing at least one keyword related to your blogging niche.
Unless you want to make a hefty investment in an available but highly competitive domain name you’re better off choosing a creative, easy to visualize domain name with one niche keyword.
Note: do not obsess for weeks over picking the right domain name. Bloggers waste precious time thinking through this important decision for weeks or even months. Get clear, choose your domain and move forward, giving your attention and energy to the other important choices as well as creating helpful content and connecting with leaders in your niche.
3: Choosing Your Mentors
Cut your learning curves by years.
Select the right blogging mentors for you.
Consider 1-3 mentors. Pick 1 from the blogging tips niche to learn how to build a successful blog from the ground up but also pick 1 or 2 mentors who blog from your niche.
Example; after picking a blogging mentor like Zac Johnson or Darren Rowse you would pick 1-2 well known personal development bloggers if you blog in that niche.
Blogging tips bloggers help lay the foundation for a successful blog. Following a few top bloggers from your niche clues you in on monetizing channels and other nuances specific to your niche of choice.
Never build a blog unless you follow 1 or more skilled, heart-centered, genuine blogging mentors. You will add years to your learning curve by trying to succeed on your own.
Learn from the best.
Make your blogging life easier.
4: Selecting Your Hosting
Going with the right hosting package for your needs can have a dramatic effect on your blog.
Choosing cheap hosting often precedes blogging doom. Cheap hosting packages are cheap for a good reason; expect poor customer service, frequent downtime and slow loading speeds.
Pay a premium for dependable, reliable web hosting.
Read web hosting reviews on Google. Demand fair and balanced takes on a range of hosting companies.
If a company seems reputable and offers competitive, reasonable pricing you can make a confident decision.
Resist the urge to buy a cheap hosting solution. Pay up to play up.
5: Premium or Bespoke Theme?
When you decide to step it up you need to choose between either a pre-made premium blog theme or a custom-made bespoke theme for your blog.
Pre-made premium themes are less expensive but not tailored specifically for your brand.
Bespoke themes are expensive but fully customized themes that fit your brand like a glove.
Don’t make your decision solely on a dollar basis. If you want to build a world-renowned brand you will probably pay a designer to build a bespoke theme for your blog.
If you aren’t quite that clear simply invest in a premium theme to convey a professional image without standing out in an eye-popping way.
6: Decide When to Pack it in
Sometimes you need to let go an old, worn out, tired blog you have outgrown.
Doing so makes room for:
- a new blog
- a flood of creative ideas
- new income streams
- new blogging buddies
Trust your feelings. If blogging has felt boring, or draining, for many months, you probably need to trash the blog in order to start a new venture.
In some cases you will decide to blog in a different niche. In other cases you will move away from blogging all together.
Honor your intuition.
Make the bold, clear move to let go a losing proposition to make room for greater happiness, freedom and fun.
This is perhaps the most difficult decision to ever make, blogging-wise. But if you can let go a blog you no longer enjoy working to make room for a successful, fun to work venture you will accelerate your online success quickly.
What important blogging decisions have you made recently?
What blogging decisions do you fear making?
Author: Ryan Biddulph
Ryan Biddulph is a blogger, author and world traveler who’s been featured on Richard Branson’s Virgin Blog, Forbes, Fox News, Entrepreneur, Positively Positive, Life Hack, John Chow Dot Com and Neil Patel Dot Com. He has written and self-published 126 bite-sized eBooks on Amazon. Ryan can help you build a successful blog at Blogging From Paradise.