Category

Blogging

Blogging Career Finance

HOW I EARNED OVER $1000 WITHIN 3 MONTHS OF BLOGGING

December 22, 2017

It’s funny to think that just a few months ago I was reading up on blogging and how people monetize their blog. At the time, I was a huge skeptic. It sounded way too good to be true but I was still slightly intrigued. After a significant amount of research, I decided the potential reward was worth the risk and it was a small enough investment that I didn’t need to worry if it was a big hoax.

I read many posts from big time bloggers who said to be prepared to wait a while until you make any money and don’t give up. It could happen in one month or it could take a year. One thing to keep in mind is that when you treat your blog like a business rather than a hobby you tend to get more out of it. What you put into it is what you will get out of it. I was a bit nervous about this because I work full time in IT and I’m a new mom so when am I going to find the time?

The reason I got into blogging was to try and make extra money to set aside for my son, Axel. Daycare and other expenses have been overwhelming and there isn’t much leftover to save. I want to be able to give him a good future and help him with college tuition. I told my husband, Andrew, about my intent and ideas to make sure he was on board. He thought it was a great idea but warned that I have very little free time now and I have to remember to balance everything.

I launched my blog on October 1st, 2017. It was difficult to not desire to spend most of my free time working on it because it was building momentum quickly and I was very passionate about my topics. Another pattern I found in reading other big bloggers was to focus on your niche and be authentic, so that’s what I did. Naturally, my niche became motherhood and all its rewards and struggles. I tried my best to be real and document everything that I thought would be helpful for a new mom. I started to gain a decent following and received lots of great feedback.

I don’t intend on consistently posting income reports. A lot of full time bloggers do but this is just my side hustle and I wanted to share the exciting news of the great earning potential. If you are looking for a different kind of side hustle you could also consider starting an Etsy shop. Check out our page about how we started our Etsy shop where we sell vintage and handmade items within the U.S.

I still remember exactly how I felt in the moment of receiving the first deposit of money IN MY BANK ACCOUNT. The earning potential is real! It wasn’t a hoax! One thing people don’t realize about blogging is that it’s a ton of work. It’s fun and exciting work but it is a lot of work. I spend a lot of time brainstorming ideas, creating an outline, writing the post, capturing great pictures that will help tell my story, promoting my work on social media and networking to get my name out there. When I saw the first deposit in my account, I thought about all the long hours I spent researching and trying to get myself noticed and it finally worked. Such a great feeling!

A common question I get is – How do you make money blogging? I wondered this at first too and I probably read dozens of other posts that answered this question. Every blogger’s strategy is a little different but here is my breakdown and exactly what has worked for me:

My Sources of Income:

  1. Social Media Marketing Consulting
  2. Guest Posts (writing articles for other companies)
  3. Web Design Consulting
  4. Product Reviews
  5. Ad Revenue (Google Adsense)
  6. Affiliate Marketing (promoting products or services and customers buy through my links)

I do have a Business Management & Marketing Bachelors degree and a Masters in Business Administration which helps my skill set but I really don’t think you need a bunch of “fancy” degrees in order to be of value and make money. So, if you are reading this and worried that you don’t have enough college background – don’t worry. You can learn SO MANY THINGS on the internet nowadays. If you want to learn some marketing techniques then get on your computer and start researching. Follow me on Pinterest where I have tons of amazing boards and resources from my website and other big bloggers that I follow.

Some of these opportunities came from me reaching out to people via social media and directing them to my Contact Me/Hire Me page so they could see if my skills aligned with what they needed. Other opportunities came from people reaching out to me through my social media or website. My biggest money making opportunities originated from Instagram. Check out my Instagram account to see the strategies I use. I usually start by checking out a company’s Instagram account and getting to know some things through that. Then I direct message them with a quick introduction of myself and what I have to offer. You can also check out some of my guest post articles by visiting Wawita Baby Product’s blog.

Along with the money I have earned, I have also received over $100 retail value worth of free products! Companies will send me products they are launching so that I can review them and create a blog post to talk about my experience using it. I have received a baby scale, pacifiers, teethers, bottles and a breastpump. Check out my recent posts where I reviewed a baby scale and a baby bottle.

Three months into blogging and I earned over $1000. If you would have asked me about my earning potential a few months ago, I would have guessed maybe $50? I really had no idea until I put myself out there and tried different strategies. It has been so much fun to earn money doing things I love! If I can earn this doing it on the side with a full time job, imagine what you could do if you did this full time. I really enjoy my career in IT and I’m working hard to achieve my career goals. I also like the security of a consistent paycheck and good health benefits which is why I don’t intend to transition to blogging full time. A lot of people do, and they love it! I am now on month five on my blogging and have earned over $2100! Like – actual money IN MY BANK.

If you are reading this post and feeling skeptical yet intrigued like I once was, please feel free to reach out to through my contact form or any of my social medias if you have more specific questions. I have helped four people start the process or launch their own website and it feels good to make believers out of people. You can make money if you put in the effort and it’s a ton of fun.

I have an entire page dedicated to How to Start a Blog so be sure to check it out. I use Bluehost for my hosting service which has worked well for me and many of the big bloggers I follow use this too. Use my link to get a special, discounted offer on hosting services. If you are about to take that next step of starting a blog then good luck to you! Put in the effort and be authentic and you will do great.

BEST OF LUCK!

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging

HOW TO HANDLE YOUR FIRST NEGATIVE COMMENT

October 22, 2017

I am new to the blogging world. I was warned about the negativity that may come my way. I thought I was safe because I really don’t write about anything controversial. I get awkward during conflict. I was having my best week yet with blogging – lots of pageviews and people reaching out to me thanking me for inspiring them. Wow! Then I woke up the other morning and saw my first negative comment, OUCH. This woman must have been mad at the world because she really ripped me apart. She ranted about how rotten it was for me to leave the house with my newborn and expose him to germs, breastfeeding in public is unnecessary stress, how my maternity leave wasn’t “reality” and something about Snapchat being immature. I literally couldn’t think of words to respond, and I didn’t.

As I read this paragraph-long rant, I started to feel discouraged. She was ripping apart one of my posts and basically telling me I was a bad mom. Woof, that cut to the core of me. Was she right? I started to let all the negative thoughts creep in. I felt like just closing my lap top and being done for a while. But then I started to think about all the positivity I had been receiving and this is what I did next:

  1. I read her full comment once more (it was long and hurtful) but I wanted to see if somewhere in the midst of her hurtful words if there was any validity to what she was saying? She said something along the lines of how my maternity leave was a mini vacation – and that is not what I was trying to portray at all…
  2. I went to my post she was referring to and read every word. My intent was to explain what I thought maternity leave would look like, the reality of it, and some fun things I did with baby boy. After reading it again, I didn’t change a thing because I still feel like I was honest and gave some fun ideas for what you can do. I don’t know one mom who spent the 12 weeks of leave not leaving their house at all in fear of exposing your baby to germs.
  3. I deleted the comment. And then I deleted it from my trash folder, and then from my brain. I can’t dwell on the negative and there was absolutely nothing constructive in the comment – time to move forward.
  4. I re-read POSITIVE texts, emails and comments from my followers to lift up my spirits. Thank you for that 😊
  5. I wrote this post. Bullying doesn’t end after your school days. Cyber bullying is out of control and I often see negative comments on instagram, youtube, facebook…you name it. Don’t spend your energy worrying about what some stranger is too afraid to say to your face. Don’t put your self-worth in negative peoples’ opinions.

When I was researching all about blogging, I read that some people actually accept the negative comments to be posted to the public. The reasoning was that controversy can cause arguments over comments and as a result, you are getting more page views to your blog! That’s an interesting strategy to me but I’d rather keep the negativity away as much as I can for my own sanity! Even if a comment has a negative tone, I may consider posting it to the public if it could lead to healthy debate. I am by no means a perfect mom and I have a lot to learn! I truly appreciate advice. My sister just told me I was using the wrong bottle nipple size – I didn’t even know that was a thing haha. Poor baby Axel!

Now, a few of my followers have pointed out grammatical errors or something that didn’t quite make sense and I appreciate that! That is constructive criticism and it helps me to provide my readers with top quality content so thank you!

I am thankful for the conversation I had with my siblings and husband after this happened. My husband laughed about it and said people are crazy. My sister, Kiele, who is one tough cookie – went all Mama bear. “Who is she!? What’s her name?! Give me her name!” Haha, calm down Mama bear. I don’t want her to try and fight it because that’s probably exactly what this woman wants. I also talked with my little bro, Ethan, and sister-in-law, Tori, who have a Youtube channel. They also laughed it off and said they get some ridiculous comments from haters. They shared some with me and I am still laughing about it – that’s how ridiculous they are. Tori had a Youtube video go mini viral and people were literally ripping on her shoes being too dirty. HAHAHA!

So to the angry stranger that sent me my first negative comment, thank you for the idea to write this post and share with others so that I may lift them up and help them move forward in similar situations. Negativity is one risk you take when you put yourself out there on the web. I challenge you this week to go out to your social media platforms and for every negative comment you see – post three positive comments somewhere. Let’s overcome the negativity! Don’t let strangers define your self-worth. You are awesome. Don’t give up on your dreams. I’m not going to.

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

My Affiliate Marketing portfolio currently consists of:

Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging

BLOG BUZZWORD DICTIONARY – ALL THE TERMS YOU NEED TO KNOW TO START BLOGGING

October 21, 2017

When I started researching blogging, I was completely overwhelmed (most people are). I didn’t start my blog for months because I was scared and I had no idea where to start. As I was researching and gathering blog related content to read, I started making myself a dictionary of all these buzz words that everyone within the blogosphere seemed to be fluent in. If I was going to invest time and money into this then I wanted to be well educated on the topic. This is different from my day job where I can meet people, pair up with a mentor and learn the company culture naturally. It took some effort to familiarize myself with blogging etiquette!

So if you are new to the blogging world or thinking about taking the leap of faith then hopefully this list I compiled will also help you to speak fluent in blog 😊

SEO: Search Engine Optimization is how you increase the number of visitors to your blog by analyzing what key words and topics people are searching for in popular search engines (Google, Pinterest, etc.)

Traffic: This refers to the visitors you get who view your site. The goal is to increase traffic as this will help increase your earnings.

Affiliates: Companies or Individuals you can partner with to promote products or services and earn money. The highly successful bloggers only promote products they use themselves to build trust with their followers. My favorite affiliate program so far is ShareASale. It’s easy to apply for you and you get access to tons of different merchants. You can choose which companies and products best fit your niche and start promoting!

Affiliate Marketing: The action of promoting specific products or services naturally within blog posts. See my post on starting a money making blog to see how I promote Bluehost!

Affiliate Links: Links within your blog where you direct your reader to another site to purchase a service or product. It is important to have a statement in each post stating that your post contains affiliate links.

Google Adsense: An entity of Google where you can apply to show ads on your website. You can earn money by views and clicks.

Disclosure Statement: a statement that covers the terms, conditions and rules of your site. See my Policies tab for an example.

Privacy Policy: a statement that clarifies what your subscribers will and will not be used for and their rights. See my Policies tab for an example.

Side Hustle: Ways to make extra income outside your “day job”

Monetizing Blog: Creating a blog with the intent of earning money (through ads and affiliates)

Pinterest Group Boards: Exclusive Pinterest groups that you request to join. These boards typically have a large amount of followers so you are able to promote your blog with high visibility.

Viral Pin: This is when one of your pins you uploaded builds momentum and is viewed by thousands of people. This can happen quickly or may take some time. You can see if your pin went viral through a number of analytics tools.

Domain: This is your website name. For example, mine is www.lumberjackworthy.com When choosing a domain, think of what you want your brand and niche to be.

Self-Hosted: This means you own your domain by purchasing it. There is the option of creating a domain for free but it is extremely difficult to make money and you don’t have much control over the content. Check out my post on self-hosted vs free for more details.

Bluehost: This is the leader in the domain hosting industry. This is where you would purchase your domain to start your blog. There are other options but this is what all the top bloggers use. This is also what I use for my domain. Check out the link below for a great deal!

WordPress: This is the platform where you actually build your website/blog. You can install it for free once you purchase your domain through bluehost.

Widget: a tool WordPress provides to allow you and your viewers to interact in a number of ways. For example, some widgets I use are the About Me, Google Translate and Subscribe Here. Examples of these can be found on the right hand side of any of my blog pages. These are free through WordPress.

Tailwind: An automated pinning tool to upload your pins at the optimal times to increase your blog traffic. There are costs associated with this but I’ve heard it can increase page views exponentially!

Automate: Leveraging a service or tool to automatically complete a task for you rather you manually doing it yourself. Example: Tailwind automatically uploads your pins instead of you taking the time to do it.

Social Media Marketing: The use of social media platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, BlogLovin, etc to promote your blog.

“The Big 4”: Refers to the top four social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest

Target Audience: The group or specific demographics of people you are trying to reach with your content. For example, some of my big topics include blogging, marriage, baby and parenting so I am targeting people looking for that specific content.

Income Reports: Many bloggers will post the income they are earning each month to show progress and talk about their strategy.

Theme: the style and design you choose for your website. This can be customized to best represent your brand.

Premium Theme: A style/design for your website that you pay extra for to set yourself apart from others.

Niche: This is what makes you stand out from others. What makes your content unique from others?

Passive Income: Income you can make in your sleep! You do this by getting your blog established with ads and/or affiliate links. Any time your readers make a purchase through your site, you can earn a commission.

Blogging Community: The online community of bloggers. It is crucial to encourage and engage with others in the community! Everyone should support each other.

So maybe you already knew some of these terms. Several of these were new concepts to me so I thought this list could help others. If there is a term you come across that you need more clarity on, let me know and I can add it to the list. Thanks for reading!

 

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

My Affiliate Marketing portfolio currently consists of:

Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging Faith Marriage Motherhood

WHY I PRAYED TO GOD FOR MY BLOG TO FAIL

October 21, 2017

I have put a TON of effort into launching my blog. I spent 60+ hours just researching before I even purchased my domain. So why on God’s green earth would I pray for God to let my blog fail?!

My prayer went a little something like this:

…Dear God, please help me on my blog journey. Please help me to find the right tools and meet the right people to grow my blog and inspire others.

Please let my blog FAIL if:

  • Let my blog fail if it starts to negatively impact my marriage or child
  • Let my blog fail if the money I could potentially make changes my character for the worse
  • Let my blog fail if I start to praise myself for my “success” instead of You

Amen.

Shortly after launching my blog, I listened to a sermon at church about how people strive to be GREAT in many aspects of life. People want to be great in school, work, sports, parenting…you name it. You’ve seen the mugs or T-shirts – “World’s Greatest Dad.” People strive for greatness! Now, in my opinion, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I think it’s awesome when people work hard and desire to be great at what they do! I am one of those people and I love working towards goals. But how we define success and how our successes can change us can be dangerous.

I am almost my first month into blogging and there have been days where I feel like I could explode with excitement with how things are moving forward. Some days I will receive approval emails from affiliates, positive comments/emails from followers with encouraging words and see my page views and earnings increasing! Sometimes, I feel I am running on so much adrenaline and excitement that I could stay up all night working on my blog. I recently realized that I was spending almost all of my free time working on it. I was accidentally ignoring my husband and missing my baby boy’s smiles. Ironically, I started this blog for baby Axel! Yet, I am spending so much spare time in the evening ignoring him! Yikes!

This type of stuff is exactly what I don’t want. Having goals and growing my blog is so fun but I don’t want to look back in a year and think of how much time I spent ignoring my family! I don’t want to be so distracted by blog stats that I am completely oblivious to my family’s needs. In the last week, I have made a conscious effort to check on my family before I start my blog sessions.

  • If baby Axel is awake – does he need milk? Diaper change? Can I play with him or walk him? Can I give him a bath?
  • If baby Axel is asleep – can I spend some quality time with my husband? Give him a shoulder rub or make him a snack?
  • Does our pup, Quinn, need a walk? Does she look neglected? Can I throw the tennis ball in the backyard for her or give her a belly scratch?
  • If the family is all doing well and doesn’t need Mama – then time for some blogging. Mama gets some time for herself, yay!

Balance is hard. At the end of the day, if I don’t have all the laundry done or I didn’t publish a new blog post – oh well. I work full time, I have a husband who needs me and a baby boy growing up way too fast. Fortunately, I switched my diet over to a more natural and organic one a couple years ago which gives me much more energy to get all my tasks done! One of my favorite quick, easy meals is a smoothie because it’s easy to toss in energy-boosting ingredients. I was nervous to try the below Super Greens powder but if I do a small scoop mixed in with some fruit, you can’t even taste all the greens. I have to hide the “greens” in my husband’s food because he is naughty about eating his veggies! 🙂

My husband knows that if at any time he feels neglected because of this new endeavor then I am taking a break or letting it go. I did the same thing when we opened our Etsy shop in 2015. I think this is how a lot of career-driven individuals push their family away without knowing it. Most people are driven to work hard for their families, yet they are neglecting them! One great thing we have found with our Etsy shop is that my husband and I get to work on it together! We love going to flea markets and antique shops and picking out interesting items. It’s quality time AND side hustling all in one! Check out my post on how our Etsy shop funds our hobbies. Lately, as I am sharing all the exciting blog news with my husband, we discovered that we can do some of that together as well! We both work in IT and are tech savvy so when I was sharing with him my web design vision, he helped me create it and it was fun! He also does woodworking on the side and asked if I could do a post with instructions and pictures of his next project. Um, YES! Of course I will!

I have seen money change people. I have seen material items impact relationships. Money and Greatness can ruin peoples’ lives. So, I want to be very careful on how I define success and where I attribute this “Greatness” to. I believe that God gave me the personality, education, relationships and parents that made me the person I am today. I like who God made me and where I am at today. Whether my side hustles make me lots of extra income each month or I just make back what I invested – I want my character to remain and remember who I attribute the greatness or success to, which is God.

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

My Affiliate Marketing portfolio currently consists of:

Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging Career

25 TIPS FOR BEGINNER BLOGGERS – COMPILED BY A BEGINNER BLOGGER!

October 16, 2017

I spent well over 60+ hours researching blogging over maternity leave before even STARTING MY BLOG and below are the notes that I gathered from my research. I am a Business Analyst full time so I have some skills when it comes to analyzing data and making good decisions! I finally started my own blog and was so glad I was able to find so many helpful tips from successful bloggers. Starting a blog is overwhelming but I can’t believe how many resources are out there for beginners! In my opinion, this list is invaluable and my blog would not be where it’s at today without this advice. I am in the process of documenting and posting all the steps I took to get my blog launched. Soon, I hope to be posting income reports! Stay tuned.

1.       Several successful bloggers recommend not using the free blog sites if you want to make money
2.       Self hosted is the route to make money (allows ads, you have control, you own, can’t be shut down)
3.       Use WordPress to build your site (integrated through bluehost)
4.       Start with bluehost basic plan until you have traffic over 150k views/month – you can change your plan at any time
5.       Create blog presence (build traffic) on the big 4: Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram
6.       Save all blog related receipts for tax breaks (ex: craft supplies for a DIY post)
7.       Don’t spend a ton of money to start up (I invested $149 total so far and already started earning $)
8.       It takes one post going “viral” to build momentum, don’t give up!
9.       Join Facebook blogging groups, pinterest groups and Instagram blog accounts
10.   Get involved in blogging community: follow big bloggers, comment and interact
11.   SEO: Search Engine Optimization – RESEARCH IT
12.   Consider paying WordPress for Premium Themes – I did, $49, totally worth it. My theme is Driftwood, it’s simple and professional
13.   Google Adsense looks for premium themes – true story
14.   Most Premium themes are friendly on all devices (phones, tablets, laptops)
15.   Research affiliate marketing and read their terms & conditions! Look into their payout plan.
16.   Consider Tailwind or Board Booster for Pinterest optimization
17.   Think through blog titles, should be clever and appealing to large audience
18.   Make sure to have email or sign up available for subscribers
19.   Consider investing in a nice camera or better phone with good camera
20.   Use Sumo for for share buttons, pop-up boxes, and announcement bars
21.   Google Adsense doesn’t pay out until you reach $100 and you may get rejected the first time like I did but can reapply
22.   Consider additional social media platforms: StumbleUpon, Flipboard, Reddit, Instructables
23.   Research blogging conferences near me depending on how big you want to go
24.   Respond to comments and emails – listen to what your readers want
25.   BE AUTHENTIC – be yourself, write about what you love, don’t copy others

 

Remember, you do not have to blog full time and post new content every single day. I blog in my spare time between being a new Mama and working my full time job in IT. There may be discouraging moments in your blogging journey but don’t let it stop you. There are tons of motivated individuals out there blogging successfully today and you can totally join them. You got this. Good luck to you!

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

My Affiliate Marketing portfolio currently consists of:

Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging

HOW TO START A MONEY MAKING BLOG IN 5 MINUTES

October 7, 2017

When I started researching all about blogging, I saw many different posts on starting your own blog in minutes! I want to tell you up front that you can start your blog very easily and quickly but actually creating the content you want and launching your site does take time and effort! If you would like to start the process while following my instructions, click on the link below to get setup with a special offer today!

I have been a Business Analyst for a few years now so my day job is literally analyzing data and helping the business make smart decisions. So of course, I am going to use those skills in my personal life. One of the first things I did was make a list of important decisions I need to make for my blog. A major question was where will my domain be hosted? (Check out my Self Hosted vs Free post). I live in Excel so I made a spreadsheet. My first tab consisted of hosting options which I will share with you below! As you can see, I looked into several options, cost and pros/cons. All my research was pointing to bluehost. The bluehost website is professional and user-friendly. I love the fact that they have 24/7 support. A ton of big time bloggers use this so of course I wanted it!

Host Cost Pros Cons
Bluehost 3.95 per month Free Domain
Free Site Builder
WordPress friendly
24/7 Support
Popular with Major Bloggers
Discounts on ad offers
Monthly Fees
Siteground 2.95 per month Free Domain
Free Site Builder
WordPress friendly
24/7 Support
Mentioned by a few bloggers
Monthly Fees
FastComet 2.95 per month Free Domain
Free Site Builder
WordPress friendly
24/7 Support
Monthly Fees
Free Sites 0 No monthly fees You don’t own your content
Difficult to transfer content to a self hosted
Limited Ad content
Not as professional
Not taken as seriously as self-hosted
Not recommended by top bloggers

 

So now I will give you step by step instructions with screenshots of how easy it is to create your domain and start your blog today!

Here is the welcome page where you can get started:

Next, you will select your plan. Bluehost recommends the prime but I chose the basic. You can easily switch at any time based on your needs.

Then you will choose your domain. This is what you want your website to be called. I have seen some people use their first and last name and others use whatever brand they are trying to portray. If you haven’t thought of a good domain name, take some time to think what will best represent your content. You can also use an existing domain name if you have one.

Lastly, you will choose your package information. I unchecked all the boxes because I didn’t feel like I needed them and they just seemed like up charges. Now, I highly recommend at least checking the Domain Privacy Protection because they warn you may get email and phone spam – and YOU WILL. I got dozens of emails and calls a day for a few weeks and it was so annoying. 

Once you have paid, you are good to go! Congratulations on your new website! You can then begin building with WordPress which is integrated into your bluehost account. Good luck to you!

Bluehost allows me to offer a special offer to new customers. Get started using the link below! Let me know if you have any questions and thanks for reading!

 

 

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

My Affiliate Marketing portfolio currently consists of:

Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

This post may contain affiliate links meaning I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only promote products that I have personally used myself or believe in. Please see my Policies tab for more details.

Blogging

SELF-HOSTED DOMAIN VS FREE: WHAT’S BEST?

October 6, 2017

WHAT IS A SELF-HOSTED DOMAIN

When I began researching about creating my own website, I came across many new buzz words I was unfamiliar with. One of them was “self-hosted”. After further investigation, I found out this meant that you own your domain. You have control over when your site goes live and the content. This typically comes at a cost but it’s a wise investment which I’ll explain below.

SELF-HOSTED VS. FREE

As mentioned above, a self-hosted domain is owned and operated by you. A free domain is exactly what it sounds like – free of charge. The key differences are cost, ownership, content control and customer support. Free sounds appealing, but it’s not the best option depending of your intent. Think of the “free” box you see at a garage sale or the end of someone’s driveway. What’s in it? Typically, garbage that nobody wants so please, be hesitant when you are thinking of saving a buck. Keep in mind the phrase, “you get what you pay for.”

WHAT’S BEST FOR YOU

In my research (I’ve put in a good 40+ hours by now because I am thorough), I found that the intent of your domain will drive this decision. If you are looking to create a blog for fun because you simply enjoy writing then you are directed to choose a free domain. If you want to monetize your blog, it is highly suggested you purchase your domain. I personally believe that regardless of your intent, you should purchase your domain. Here’s why:

  1. If you purchase from a reputable host site, your content won’t get shut down or lost
  2. You own your domain – meaning you have the freedom to create whatever content inspires you and you can include ads and affiliate links
  3. Customer support – my husband and I are both in IT and tech savvy but we still needed customer support within the first week of owning our domain and found it to be extremely helpful. Our issue was resolved in under 2 minutes. You don’t get that kind of assistance with a free domain.
  4. If you think you want to start a site for fun and then later decide to switch over to making money, it’s a nightmare to transfer your content. I’ve read dozens of horror stories.

I personally use bluehost.com for my domain. Since I signed up I was able to get my site launched within a week and I am now in the process of applying for ads and affiliate programs. They have a live chat and customer support line for assistance. I have used this and the support technician was extremely friendly, easy to understand and actually HELPFUL!

So what are you waiting for? You are obviously reading this because you are interested in having your own domain. I put it off for months because I was intimidated but when I finally signed up with bluehost, my only regret was not doing it sooner. Now, I am not claiming this to be easy. It definitely takes some research and time but the most important up-front decision to make is where your domain will be hosted. Whether you are simply passionate about writing or want to make money in your sleep, bluehost is a great tool. Sign up using my link below for a special offer. If you have ANY questions feel free to comment or reach out to me through our contact page. I would be more than happy to help!

Want to know how I earn money blogging? Check out my blog category for all my posts on how I started my blog, how I earn money and helpful tips. I share EVERYTHING. What’s in it for me? I could potentially make affiliate commissions on products and services I recommend at no extra cost to you but I share everything I learned about blogging because I found all of this information for FREE from other bloggers! Pay it forward, right? The world of blogging is full of encouragement and support. You will struggle if you try to do this all on your own!

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Amazon Associates

ShareASale

Cate & Chloe

Bluum

Tactical Dad

The Spoiled Mama

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