by Silicon Valley Blogger on 2008-08-12 295
Can you make money blogging? Apparently so, as these top bloggers can attest!
These days, when I bump into other mothers on play dates, or when I see people I haven’t seen for sometime, I get asked how and what I’ve been doing lately. I pause, then tell them that I “blog”. That of course, inspires a lengthy discussion about the subject of “blogging”; I tell them why I do it and why I’ve traded my almost 20 year old career in technology and software development for this new-fangled activity.
Blogging is one of those “cheap hobbies” that turned me into an accidental entrepreneur. It’s work that I find enjoyable, that is sufficiently challenging, that allows me to keep learning and expanding my knowledge in so many ways (and not just in the area of finance). It’s something that I can actually earn money from while affording me the ability to set my own hours and work on my own terms. What more can you ask for in a “job”?
Then again, it may not be for everyone: it can make you fat (I believe) and for some people, it’s even a health hazard! But if you’re interested in giving it a go, here are the basic steps to get started:
How To Start Blogging
1. Learn the basics using a free blogging platform such as WordPress.com or Blogger.com. Now there may be limitations with how you can monetize a site if you use these platforms. More serious bloggers actually decide to get their own domains and self-host their blogs to have full control of their web properties.
2. Register your
own domain and sign up with a hosting plan. As I mentioned, serious bloggers who want to monetize their sites fully will benefit from hooking up with a solid and cheap hosting provider. I initially used Dreamhost and Web Hosting Pad but then they gave me too much downtime and poor service, so I switched to Hostmonster. which has been awesome! I have since moved my larger sites to SliceHost, but keep HostMonster for my other blogs and online projects. One other good choice that I’ve heard great feedback on is Bluehost. As for domain registration, I’ve been using GoDaddy.
Tip: For more choices, I’ve prepared a list of cheap web hosting services in case you’d like additional options.
3. Download and set up the WordPress application in your hosted environment. Your web host provider may be able to assist you with this.
4. Be patient as you learn the ropes. There’s a lot to learn, but the best way to get inspired is to see how others have done it!
Here are a few enthralling details about successful bloggers that I sourced from BusinessWeek. These profiles can inspire you to pursue your online aspirations:
Top Bloggers and The Money They Earn
These bloggers did not count on making big money; they sound like they all became unexpected successes in the world of content publishing. Note that these statistics and earnings were taken sometime in the past — as a snapshot in time — so I suspect much higher traffic and MUCH healthier revenues for these bloggers today. In fact, I know very well that smaller blogs in some great niches make pretty good money along these lines.