Every mom should have an option to stay home with her children, regardless of income

How to Start a Money Making Blog The Easy Way

Updated: February 8, 2017

Blogging is a fantastic way to write about things that you are passionate about, help other people with the knowledge that you have, all while simultaneously earning an income from home. Before I started blogging, I had no clue it could be so profitable.

But, setting up a blog can be overwhelming if you have never done it before (and if you are not technically inclined). In this post, I will make it so easy, you’ll wonder why you’ve not done it before. Between my step by step video tutorial to all the screenshots walking you through it, you will have no trouble setting up your own blog. And the best news is, that it costs VERY LITTLE to begin!

Ready to start your OWN blog?

Starting a blog can be extremely difficult, especially if you're not a techy. In this video and screenshot tutorial, I've broken down all the steps to make it so easy, anyone can do it, even non-techy's like me!

To Get Started, I’ll Walk You Through These Steps to Make Them Much Easier For You:

Getting a Hosting Account

In order to have a blog, you need a host for your website, someone that allows you to rent a space on the internet (think of it like leasing or buying land to build a house on). A good host can make or break your blog.

Now keep in mind, there are a few free sites where they will host your blog for you, like Blogger, but I make way too much money every month in coaching when people come to me and want to switch from Blogger to WordPress, so best to do yourself a favor and start out RIGHT!

With the free sites that host for you, you will not solely own your blog and will not have as much control over it. Some free sites also do not permit web ads. If you plan on growing your blog into a business, want better traffic and SEO options (SEO is basically the way to get more traffic), it is essential to have a self hosted site.

I recommend using the host site Bluehost.

Why?

Reason #1 – They have great prices (you can enjoy prices as low as $2.95/month)!

Reason #2 – They have OUTSTANDING customer service. I don’t know about you, but that is important to me! Nothing can ruin your experience more than being with a company with horrible customer service, leaving you all on your own to figure out all this blogging stuff. Every single time I have talked to them, they are quick, efficient, and super knowledgeable. They are not condescending at all and have a way of explaining things well (especially to non-techy’s like myself).

Not only that, but if you do decide blogging isn’t for you, or you are not satisfied with their service for any reason at all, they will issue a full refund for any months you have left on your account. I’ve fallen into the trap with other companies that do not honor that and I wanted to switch because their hosting service and customer service stunk and my website was always down. Bluehost’s customer service is superb and they have a live chat as well as phone option, making it even more convenient, not to mention their customer service team is 100% based in the US.

Reason #3 – They are so easy to use (as you can see in the video below). Their platform ROCKS! My SarahTitus.com blog is too big and complicated now to NOT have a dedicated hosting plan with extremely frequent backups, however, with having a dedicated host, I’m dead in the water. I have NO CLUE how to work the inner workings of my site, so I have to hire it out. This costs me more money. If you’re just getting started, you need a platform that is extremely simple to use. I still have Bluehost on one of my other sites, as well as my friends and family all have Bluehost and I help them with tech work. Any time I work with Bluehost, it’s always extremely simple.

Reason #4 – Trustworthy. Bluehost gets you on WordPress quickly, easily, and affordably. Not only that, Bluehost is #1 recommended by WordPress themselves for hosting services, making them incredibly trustworthy!

Reason #5 – Morals. In a day and age where money is king, Bluehost sets a higher standard by prohibiting pornography, nudity, and other adult content from being hosted on their servers! As a Christian, this is extremely important to me and as far as hosting companies go, this standard is incredibly RARE!

Purchasing a Domain Name

You are going to want to start by going to the Bluehost webpage. You can access it by clicking here or by typing http://www.sarahtitus.com/bluehost into your browser.

 

After clicking through, this is what you’ll see:

>>SALE – GOOD THROUGH MARCH 31, 2017<<

Ready to sign up? Starting a blog is super easy and literally takes less than 5 minutes to do. Click here to get the best deal available online when you take that step, along with a full tutorial and video to help you get started. Please note: this low offer is ONLY GOOD THROUGH March 31 and is the absolute lowest pricing they offer online. I wish it were this cheap when I started MY blog!

Right now (through March 31, 2017), you can get hosting as low at $2.95/month! They have you pay upfront and yes, you absolutely WANT to do that, so you don’t lose your domain name forever. It’s yours and no one can take it from you for as long as you purchase it in advance (I have 9 years on SarahTitus.com!)

The pricing is as follows:

  • $2.95 for 36 months –> $106.20 (so cheap seriously! I pay more than that for ONE month on my blog now because my blog is so big; I’m jealous. LOL)
  • $3.95 for 24 months –> $94.80 (great deal!)
  • $4.95 for 12 months –> $59.40 (but I wouldn’t recommend this one because I see no point in starting up a blog if you’re just going to do it for a year and these prices next year WILL GO UP! Better to pay less now all at once).

Remember that you MUST click HERE in order to get this special deal and I’m not just saying that. Do your homework. The deal isn’t available everywhere. They’ve given me special pricing for a limited time to pass on to you!

Then….click the green “get started now” button.

 

The first page it will take you to is the plan selection page as shown below.

 

Here is where you will decide which hosting option is the best for you. If you are just starting out, you will probably want to go with the starter or the plus plan. The starter plan is the least expensive because the longer you sign up for, the better deal you get. You will pay upfront, but again remember, no questions asked and you get your money back from them. They are not a hassle at all if you need to do so from what I’ve heard directly from Bluehost.

If you already have a blog that you are moving over from WordPress or Blogger, you might need to go with one of the larger plans as you’ll have more content and need more resources. But for this tutorial, I’ll assume you are new to blogging and continue walking you through it with that option in mind (the starter plan).

Your next step is to choose your domain.

bh2

 

The domain is the name of your site, or in my case, the SarahTitus in www.SarahTitus.com. Take a lot of time and thought with naming your blog. It will be the first thing people see for your site, and it will be what people use to look for you online.

It is best to avoid weird spellings because of this and I almost always recommend it be your first and last name (unless it’s incredibly hard to spell–otherwise, your name is best because you will no-doubtedly change the direction of your blog a few times before really getting a sense of your final direction).

Even after a year and a half of blogging, I just changed my direction as well. Bloggers are always growing and evolving (for lack of a better word). But chose carefully as this will become the name of your brand and what you are most known for.

Next, you will fill in your personal information.

 

You will then select your package plan.

Purchasing hosting service longer is less expensive. This is your best option, because even if you do decide to cancel, Bluehost will refund your money for all of the months of hosting you did not use. The one extra feature that is mandatory you’ll want to select is domain privacy.

This will prevent your new site and email from spam as well as preventing everyone online to be able to SEE YOUR ADDRESS AND PHONE NUMBER!!! For your own privacy, it’s a really good idea to keep that stuff private. Where this wouldn’t apply is say a business like JC Penney or Macy’s. Obviously, they want people to know their address and phone number.

I’d also recommend Site Backup Pro. As you’re setting up your blog, if something should happen, you will lose all your work if you are not have routine site backups. Think of this like your computer backups that save routinely. I have my blog save every single day! Should something ever happen, I can restore to the last save and not lose all my hard work.

Then, you will enter your payment information. Be sure to read and click that you confirm. Then, click the green submit button.

And congratulations! You now have a hosting account!!!!

Setting Up Your Hosting Account

The next step you’ll want to do is to install WordPress on your site. Think of this like the building frame to your home that you put on your land.

You can do this very easily on your Bluehost dashboard!

Immediately after clicking submit above, it will take you to your Bluehost dashboard. It will look like this:

bh7

 

 

Installing WordPress on Your Blog

And you will want to scroll down to “website” and click “Install WordPress.”

installwordpress

 

That will walk you through the steps to install WordPress to your blog. It will take a few minutes to load and the voila! You have WordPress!

From here, you will be able to login to your blog directly on WordPress. Your login page will be yourblogname.com/wp-admin. You can type that in to get to your login page!

The home screen when you want to log in to your site will look like this:

wordpressdash

 

After you login, the next page it will take you to, will be your site’s dashboard.

wordpressmainpage

Your dashboard will be the place you spend the most time. It is where you will write, edit, and craft all of your blog posts.

Picking and Installing a Theme That’s Right For You

If you want to start making money from your blog, which is why I assume you are setting up a blog with a hosting site, you will want to purchase Genesis and a child theme. You do NOT want to go with a free theme.

In fact, once you purchase Genesis and a child theme, be sure to go back and delete all the other themes on your blog. A very popular hack is getting in through those freebie themes.

You can get Genesis by clicking here. For a child theme, you can purchase any one you want, but I highly recommend paying for it for many reasons. My favorite child themes are:

Restored 316

Modern Blogger and Modern Blogger Pro – this link includes Genesis, so you don’t have to buy it twice!

Think of the child theme and Genesis like the walls in your new home. After that, you are completely set. If you want plumbing and electricity, think of those as plug ins. Anything you want to do on your blog is possible with the right plug in. Just don’t install too many as they suck up resources and make your site run slower.

To get the full list of plugins and a ton of other resources and recommendations for a blogger just starting out, click here to access my recommendations page.

Creating Your First Post

To start a post, you simply go to the left side bar and find “Posts.” Under that it will say “Add New.”

postaddnew

This is where you will do your writing/editing/blog work. There is a spot for the title of your post

stbh6

And the body is below that. That is where the actual content of your post will go.

wordpressbody

 

Most bloggers now have pictures in their posts. These are good to have so readers can pin your post to Pinterest. To add a photo to your blog post, go to “Add Media” above the body.

addmedia

 

Where to Get Pictures for Your Blog

And from there, you can upload pictures from your computer to your blog post. Make sure to always give credit where credit is due for the images you use if you are using free images from a site that allows you to use their photos.

Here’s one popular site that offers free photos. I would highly suggest, as soon as you are possibly able to, to purchase a picture subscription as pictures are super important on a blog. Here’s the company (BigStockPhoto) I’ve gone through for a long time and absolutely adore them! They don’t require attribution, which is major in my opinion.

How to Schedule a Post

When you are done with the post, you can either publish your post right away, or you can schedule it to go out on another day and time of your choosing.

To schedule your post, you will want to go to “Publish immediately” in the right sidebar under “Publish,” and then click “edit.” From there, you will be able to set the time and date for your post to be published.

schedulepost

 

To publish your post immediately, you will just hit the blue “Publish” button.

publish

And that’s it! You are now on your way to writing your very own blog! It can seem overwhelming and difficult at first. Take your time and get to know your WordPress Dashboard.

Use YouTube video’s to research things and as always, come back here often to see more blogging tips and tutorials! Once you know where everything is, writing and editing on your site will not be difficult at all, and you can focus on getting your awesome content out there and building traffic, which we can cover at a later date.

 I will make it so easy for you, you'll wonder why you haven't started a blog before!

Starting a blog can be extremely difficult, especially if you're not a techy. In this video and screenshot tutorial, I've broken down all the steps to make it so easy, anyone can do it, even non-techy's like me!


Join the Conversation:

Comments

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published.

  1. Sarah:
    i’ve been reading, and re-reading your blogs on how to blog. I am very new and very lost on how to do this. I was just reading that you want to have a wordpress.ORG site to make money, not a wordpress.COM. i believe i have the .COM site….is there anyway you could go into detail on the difference and if this is true how to switch over to .ORG?

    I am so desperate to stay home with my daughter before she’s all grown up. We absolutely cannot afford for me to just quit my job, i have to have an income of some sort and have started my own blog in hopes of accomplishing just a fraction of what you have!!! you are an inspiration and I hope you can help me out!!!

    thanks so much–from a frustrated momma in Indiana 🙂

    • Brooke, these are all great questions and I applaud you for even trying to go through all this mind-blowing stuff. Because it really is just that when you are first starting! For the .org vs .com differences, here’s a great article that explains everything. If you want to blog for profit, yes, .org will be the best option. 🙂

      My results are definitely not typical, so please don’t compare to me, especially if you are just starting out. It would only frustrate you. Blogging takes time. I’ve put in 80+ hours into my blog since it started (I’ll be 2 years old Dec 23, 2015), so there’s a TON of hours there that most moms can’t do, especially when you’re married. There’s so many more responsibilities that a married mom has that I don’t. Not saying I have it easy being single, GOODNESS NO! But, that I can have my kids do homework for school while I type this response, while other moms would be fixing dinner right now. Since I don’t have a large family, I only have to cook a few times a week and the other nights, we can have leftovers. So, please understand there are differences there and don’t beat yourself up! 🙂 Blogging is definitely not a get-rich-quick thing. For most bloggers, it takes 1-3 years to get to the point of making good money. It’s around 100,000 pageviews per months that you start earning about $500-$800 just so you have some sort of guide to look forward to (of course, that’s just general…each blog is different).

      I think that your ruthless determination will get you far…just pace yourself, so your light doesn’t burn out. 🙂

  2. Sarah
    Thank you so much for your reply 🙂 I know i don’t expect to make big bucks, ever, lol, but a steady amount to allow me to stay home is all i need, i don’t need to be rich, just home with my babies 🙂

    So since i seem to have a “.com” account, how do i switch over? I guess i could sit down and call bluehost myself and see if they can guide me. i just didn’t know how familiar you were with this area. the themes have me all confused. i have a free one for now, now isn’t a time for me to be spending money unfortunately. so hopefully i learn a lot before i have the funds to buy themes. i am going to check out that link you posted in just a second 🙂 Again, thank you so much. And you’re right being a working mom is hard, but being a stay at home mom is no easier. i am able to only work part-time 26 hours a week, so i get to be home 3 days and i’m much busier and more tired by the end of the day 🙂 but it’s a good tired! hopefully SOON i can be a full time mommy (and blogger, hopefully!)
    somedays it seems as tho it’ll never happen
    thanks so much Sarah,
    Brooke

    • Absolutely! 🙂 Are you with Bluehost now? Your best bet is calling up BlueHost and having them walk you through it, as that would be no cost. You need a good theme, a free one is not a theme you can monetize from my experience (also, it can easily get you hacked–which I also say from experience). With blogging, you have to spend a little bit of money and a lot of time. It is an investment. A very cheap investment, but an investment all the same. No “hopefully”…if you want it, go after it, make it happen and don’t take “no” for an answer. You have to make it happen! Starting a blog is like the teenage years. We all have to do it but, man, we are so glad when it’s over and never wanna do it again! LOL. And once you’re past it, you’re past it!

      • Sarah-
        Yes i am with Bluehost, so i will definitely get on the phone to them!!!

        I don’t fully understand themes yet. I’ve been researching about them, I’m afraid to buy one and not like it ;( so i’m trying to search for the perfect one!

        thank you so very much for your advice and replies ;0)

        Brooke

        • Brooke, usually the themes will refund your money within a short window of time if you don’t like them, so be sure to read the fine print as it may give you more comfort. 🙂

  3. Hi Sarah!

    I just found your blog and am so inspired! Blogging is something I’ve wanted to do for sometime and make an income off of but haven’t followed through simply because I didn’t believe I could. But after reading all of you posts I am so ready! I’m very similar to you in your views on money, the way you live, the way you give everything to God and everything else. I think you’re great, all in the two days I’ve “known” you! 😉

    Anyways, a couple of questions about the theme’s. First I’m a little confused on what exactly is “genesis” and “child” theme’s. Are they frameworks or themes? Or are those the same things? I’m *pretty* tech savvy I’d like to think but I have never heard of those and Google couldn’t really give me a clear answer, was wondering if you could expand your explanation a bit more. Also I’m nervous about spending a chunk of change on something like that right off the bat but you’ve earned my trust on what to do. I am just also very frugal (my husband and I have a $25 a month budget for anything other than bills and household supplies (and our household supplies budget is only $30)) and want to make sure it really is the only way to start a blog to earn an income and work the best? I think that was all my questions, thanks in advance, and I’m not a mom but when we have kids I have always wanted to be home with them. I admire your dedication for not just yourself but others out there too! 🙂

    • Lydia, I’m so glad to be used as an inspiration to you to start a blog. 🙂

      Genesis and a child theme are both themes. Yeah, the things I mentioned are the bare necessities, things you can’t really make a good income without. It can be a little daunting to start up a blog. I remember spending THOUSANDS of dollars when I started on all this unnecessary junk, thus my post…to save people money and help them know what to invest in and what not to invest in, saving them potentially thousands of dollars! 🙂

      • Good to know! Thanks! So if they are both themes why do we need both? Do they do different things? Just want to understand fully! 🙂 Thanks in advance!

        • Yes, Genesis is the main theme, think of it kind of like the frame of a house. The child theme are the walls. If your Genesis theme gets corrupted or hacked, you still have your child theme, so you don’t lose everything and vise versa. There are many, many reasons why you need both, but that is one. Another is that Genesis will only let you customize your blog so far, and you want it to look pretty, so in order to make it look pretty, you need a child theme. If you look at the child themes, you can see how it would look. Genesis also gives you great SEO (search engine optimization), so you get traffic from Google built right into your theme basically (that’s what I noticed the most when I switched to Genesis), so you wouldn’t just want to do a child theme. They both work together and both are needed. Hopefully that makes a little more sense. 🙂 I know it was really confusing when I first started.

  4. Hi Sarah! I have been thinking about starting a blog for awhile now but haven’t taken the plunge. I have been gathering information for months and reading your blog posts have inspired me to take the plunge finally! My husband and I want to start a family soon but want to clean up our finances first so I thought starting a blog would help. I also thought it would be a good way to get my creative juices flowing! 🙂 I also want to stay home with our babes!! So bloggers have email lists. Is this a separate service you have to purchase and go through? or is that part of the hosting?

    • Stephanie, it sounds like you have a good head on your shoulders and plan very well. That’s wonderful! 🙂 For the email list, it is #1 priority to get a good email list set up (and have a freebie to offer your readers to give them something for signing up). I go through Madmimi, but there are a few that are good. I have all the resources you could possibly need on my resources page. 🙂 You can find that page here (it’ll tell you the other email companies). I like Madmimi because it’s super simple to work, customer service is 100% perfect, and it’s the cheapest (last time I price compared all of them).

  5. Hi Sarah! I have a question regarding themes. I’m so confused! I set up my bluehost account, and am in the process of choosing a theme, but I can’t find the Genesis theme through them. The only themes I can find (via bluehost) that are for WordPress are the Kindred theme with the Genesis framework, and TechMagazine – Mobile Responsive Genesis 2 Child Theme. I want the Darling theme, which I can find through your link to StudioPress; however, it is not on the bluehost website. If I am understanding everything correctly, I can purchase the Darling theme with the Genesis framework via the Studiopress site, but it will not be compatible with WordPress (info found from the FAQ section, question titled “CAN I USE YOUR THEMES WITH MY WORDPRESS.COM ACCOUNT?” on the Studiopress site). I have purchased my domain name and am familiar with WordPress from prior usage, but I am a little overwhelmed with the bluehost site (all those icons on the control panel…I don’t even know where to begin!) but I think/hope I can figure that out eventually. I spent time looking at the themes and Darling is the one I want, but if I can’t use it on my WordPress then what is the point? I am also a little unsure of what the bluehost site is for. I sort of get that it is “hosting” my domain (my dot.com site that I created) but if I created a WordPress account, won’t they host my domain also? Why do I need both? When I blog, am I blogging from the WordPress platform or on bluehost? I’m sure you have published articles explaining all this, but if you could point me in the right direction, I would really appreciate it. It’s been a long-time dream of mine to have my own blog and you inspired me to actually get serious about it. Thank you!

    • I’m sorry you’re having trouble Sarah. If you go through these links here for Genesis and the Darling theme, they will work on your WordPress site. The reason is because if you went through Bluehost, then you’re on a WordPress.org site, self-hosted, NOT the WordPress.com site. So, the themes will work for you just fine. 🙂 If fact, if you have trouble installing them after you purchase, Bluehost has great customer service and can walk you through that if you get stuck.

      You won’t log in very much to the control panel on Bluehost. Most of the work you’ll do will be inside the WordPress account.

      Think of Bluehost like your house. It’s the foundation, the wooden slats. It’s your host. This allows you to be online. It allows traffic to come to your site. It gives you a place on the internet. Very important, especially as you grow in traffic. The themes think of Genesis like the walls of your house. It’s foundational, and gets you one step closer to having a home. The child theme, in your case, Darling, are the walls. It’s what you get to hang pictures on to make pretty.

      Aww, so glad I can be there to inspire you to go for it. I honestly think everyone should because you never know where it’ll end up and the more popular blogging gets (it’s just now starting to be taken seriously by media and therefore, they are sharing it and it will get more popular) you can already be set up and not have the whole world to compete with for space, traffic, etc. It takes a little time to “get” all of this. At least, it took ME forever. LOL. But, you’ll get there if you don’t give up! <3

  6. Hi there! Thanks for all the great info! I did a blog *years* ago, like MySpace era…LOL It was mainly for family and friends because I had moved with my military husband. So it’s purpose was to keep in touch but I wrote about various other things at times and greatly enjoyed it.
    I do have a couple of questions, can I get blue host and WordPress from my phone? Download etc..? Samsung Galaxy S6. Most importantly, I’m at a complete loss what to blog about as we have moved back home, my life is pretty ordinary….LOL I just don’t really have any one particular specialty persay. Any thoughts? And just *how* exactly do you make money? I don’t expect to get rich, just like to help my disabled Veteran husband.
    Thanks bunches and God bless!
    Jane

    • Jane, I wouldn’t personally suggest trying to blog from a phone normally, because it’s too easy to get hacked and is very limiting what you can do. However, many bloggers do check in on their blog on social media, etc. so you don’t have to be on a computer all the time. For income, here’s my income report where I break down categories of income, so it’s easy to see how I get paid. I will say that no two bloggers are alike in the way they are paid though. The possibilities are literally endless. 🙂

  7. Hi! I’m trying to decide between the “starter” plan and the “plus” plan. If I go with the starter plan and my blog grows within the 3 year timeframe, can I upgrade to the plus plan? Or do I then have to pay a higher rate, not the promotional rate? In your opinion, does 100GB give you enough storage space for a starter blog? Any advice you can shed on choosing “starter” versus “plus” for a novice blogger would be welcome.Thanks!

    • Yeah, if you’re blog grows within the 3 year timeframe, you wouldn’t get the promotional rate when you reorder. It’s like a one time promo type thing. Good idea for going for 3 years. I would definitely recommend that. If it were me, I’d go with the plus package because you get global CDN. Basically that makes your site MUCH faster to load. When your readers come to your site and it takes a few seconds to load, they leave straight away and you lose traffic. The CDN separately is about $20/month when I had it separate from my hosting, so that alone would make it worth it to me personally. However, if you’re wanting just a hobby blog for friends and family, I’d suggest the starter, so it depends on your goals.

  8. Thanks for this great article, Sarah! As a new blogger I am learning and making many detours along the way, but plan to monetize the blog in the near future!

  9. Thank you so much for this Sarah. I am just getting started with my blog after a few months. Now, I feel like it is time to ramp it up. Thanks for the tips on pictures especially. I’m loving all of your posts and site!!

    • That is great. You’ve made a lot of headway in the past few months. Great job! 🙂 Yes, it’s definitely true about pictures. It makes or breaks a blog; that’s how important it is now.

  10. How exactly do you get paid for blogging? Is it per post ? I’d love to start, I have a home daycare now and single mom of 4 and definitely can use the money. How much does one usually make a month?

    • How much a blogger makes varies greatly from blog to blog and person to person. It has many different factors. Here’s an income report of where income sources can come from. I’m working on a more detailed post for next month that will tell all about how to make money blogging. 🙂

  11. Hi. Thank you for this post. You only mentioned WordPress links. I have a blog on google -blogspot/blogger. How do i link it to Bluehost? Do you advise I continue with blogspot or switch completely? Thank you.

    • Hello. 🙂 It depends on your goals for your blog. If you want your blog to be a personal blog for family, friends, or as a hobby, then having a Blogspot or Blogger blog is just fine. If, however, you are looking to run a business from your blog or make money from your blog as an entrepreneur, then those platforms won’t work well for your goals. If that is the case, you want to switch to WordPress with Bluehost and get that going. Bluehost can help you transfer everything over, so you should be okay. Their customer service is fantastic; very knowledgable. 🙂 I also have a video on this post, showing the entire set up. Then you just have Bluehost help you transfer your Blogspot over.

  12. Hi Sarah!
    Been reading your blog posts about making money with blogging and always wanted to that with mine. I already have a wordpress dot com site with 6,965 followers and 139 recipes. I started in 2011 and had to learn everything on my own. I recently stopped posting as much because I moved and had some health challenges and kind of lost interest in just posting recipes since my diet had to be GF and DF all the time, it just gets difficult to find things to make.
    Anyway, I’ve been kicking around the idea of being a site that posts not only recipes, but crafts, home decor, pets, holiday stuff, reviews, etc.
    Since you keep popping up in my feeds on Pinterest and I’m thinking of changing things up anyway, I thought I would ask how I can start making some money with my blog. Can you help me?
    (P.S.- I’m in the middle of writing a book and participating along with NaNoWriMo and can’t have anything that’s too complicated to get up and running. Any help you can give, would be appreciated.)
    Thanks so much,
    Robin

  13. I came across your site, I don’t recall even how I came across it but am so blessed I did! I’ve been wanting to start a blog for years but never really knew how, but your information is so helpful! Thank you so much! I’m also a mom at home and as well as starting a blog, Lord willing to make an income from it would be amazing!
    I was wondering when you mentioned what to write about, I’m having a hard time picking just one thing. Is it ok to talk about a few things and then as my blog progresses I may find a topic that I am more passionate about? I guess if I choose that route I would choose a domain that is more generic? Thanks again for all of your help! God bless you!

    • Marian, I would start off doing sort of a lifestyle blog where you are talking about a variety of topics. Here’s the thing, one or two topics may resonate with people and you really have to discover which ones those are. By posting on different topics, you’re able to put the information out there and let THEM decide what they like. Of course, that is not to negate your own passions, and there’s a huge balance there. For a domain name, I’m a huge fan of using your name (unless it’s super complicated or long), so you don’t have to keep restarting over when it doesn’t fit. You want a blog to grow WITH you, so that all your hard work is not thrown away.

  14. Hi, So I’m new to blogging and I have spent all this past week reading your blogging advice over and over and watching videos on YouTube. I think I’m making progress on getting my site set up. But because I really want to hopefully start making some money with my blog I’m looking for a blogging coach. I was wondering if you do any coaching anymore, I thought I read that you weren’t anymore, but thought I’d ask. If you yourself aren’t is there any coaches you can recommend? So overwhelming getting started, trying not to make mistakes.Thanks!

    • I love your dedication Dani. This is definitely needed to run a successful blog. 🙂

      Because you’re so new, at this point, I really wouldn’t bother with coaching until you are farther along. There are so many materials available to you for free. It’s when you get to 100-200k pageviews a month, when I would suggest hiring a coach at that point. 🙂 At this point, there are TOO many scams out there by seemingly nice bloggers and you can get taken very easily and they prey on new bloggers, so BE CAREFUL! Here’s a great resource and here’s a great recommendations page that will show you some awesome tools and tricks that will also help, things you can 100% trust.

      For personalized coaching, I have a few spots open for a blogging critique. What this includes: I go over your blog for about an hour and click through just about everything, combing the site, finding ways for you to improve both traffic and monetization. Then I send over a report and you get 3 follow-up emails to ask any questions you want within 7 days of my sending the report. The cost for this is $150. All my clients have moved mountains after this critique and it’s a lot of fun for me. But again, I think you should wait until your a little farther along, even for a critique. I’d say at least 25-50 posts up and having your blog all set up and ready to go how you want it. Keep in mind, in the beginning, it’s more about just setting things up. If you jump the gun, you’ll end up wasting money. I would never sell you anything that you truly don’t need, even if it’s a lost sale for me. I care too much about others to think of money first.

      With that said, the one thing that I WOULD recommend is purchasing my new eBook, How to Turn Your Blog Into a Six-Figure Money Making Machine. It is specifically written as a hand-holding, step-by-step complete guide for someone who wants to grow their blog. It’ll tell you everything you want to be doing (and the things you don’t), as well as HOW to do them in incredible detail. It’s only $4.99 and one of the best resources you could get to keep and stay on the right track as you grow your blog. 🙂 It’s set to release on my 2 year anniversary for my blog, December 23, 2015, but you can pre-order it here.

  15. Sarah

    First, thank you for all you have put into helping others.

    Now, a friend an I started a small blog a couple years ago and have now decided to follow in your footsteps. All of the information is a bit overwhelming.

    So far We have moved the domain to Bluehost, gotten everything moved from wordpress into the Bluehost site and have gotten the themes. My question is.. Is there a place that I am missing somewhere that will give you a tutorial on how to customize the Theme as well as describe what some of these items are such as widgets and how to use them?

    Thank you in advance for any direction you are able to give.

    • For some of the themes, you can either search the site you installed the theme from to find out how to customize it or search YouTube. Much of the customization will come from clicking Appearance > Themes. Then once on that page, click the appropriate theme to customize. The way I got through all that before I hired a designer is YouTube and Fiverr. If something would take me 2 hours or more to figure it out, it was worth it to hire things out on Fiverr. But, be careful with that site; lots of scammers on there. Always create another user login for your technician instead of giving them your username and password.

  16. HI Sarah! Thanks for this article about how to start a blog. I purchased a child theme from restored 316 however, when I plugged it into wordpress, my site doesn’t look like it did in the restored 316 website. DO you have any suggestions on what to do?

    • What is your URL, so I can take a look? I’m not sure if the particular child theme you purchased is a mock site, where you’d go in and start changing things to make it yours or if it loaded the wrong files. You might want to contact them to find out for sure as they are FANTASTIC at support and helped me when I had trouble.

  17. This was the best article I’ve read on starting a blog…everyone says it’s easy, but it never is. You’ve made it so simple. I can’t wait to get started. Thank you ❤

  18. Hi Sarah,

    Is it ok to have more than one blog at the same time?
    I started a blog called Petite Brooklyn Mom on Blogger about motherhood three years ago when my first child was born. Then I stopped because life somehow just got busy with child 🙂
    Last year I opened an etsy shop called Shabby Mint Chic Party selling printable and party decorations. Now I would like to do a blog just based on my shop. Should I just somehow combined the two into one blog?
    The only problem is one is about party decorations.I would like to do reviews and post only about party and tutorial on making party decorations.
    The other one would like to write review s and do sponsor post about baby and mommy products, family friendly travel, crafts, etc.
    I would think doing two separate blogs is too much and would not get as much traffic as just having one.

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

    • I don’t think there’s a right or wrong way to do it. I know most people do have two blogs. For me, I’m a fan of one blog because it just makes that one blog even MORE powerful. Most of my blogging friends always tell me I need more than one blog or that I need to cut topics down, but my readers always email me thanking me for being a one-stop-blog, so to speak. I’ve got everything there and I feel like, since I have so much, it cuts down on the number of blogs that they need to go to. So then, yes, I get more traffic. I think where many blogs go wrong is making the name about the subject and not the person. Your Etsy shop will want to know more about YOU as a seller. If they saw mommy things, it would help them stick around more. My personal advice would be one blog. One Pinterest, one Facebook account, one Twitter, etc. It simplifies everything and when one topic is not doing so well, your blog doesn’t suffer because you have rounded content. For me, I get traffic all year round and I love it! Even in the summers when everyone else is super slow, I’m slower than normal, but only by a small amount. 🙂

  19. Did you have problems setting up a particular theme on WordPress? Did you find yourself changing themes over and over again (me, lol!) before you found the RIGHT one? There are so many to choose from.

  20. Hi, I have a question. When I sign up for Bluehost do you have to pay all thoughs months up front or is taken out of my bank account each month?

  21. Can I use a domain that I already have with GoDaddy on Bluehost? I have 3 websites that are read only that my son in law set up and have never used them because I didn’t know how and could not afford go daddy’s fees to change them into sites that I could sell items on. I am very interested in starting a blog and it seems you make it easy with your step by step instructions.

  22. I still don’t get how you make money from it? How much do you actually make? How do you maximize your income from it? Thank you.

  23. Hi Sarah! I love reading all your posts on blogging! Something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and you have finally given me the tools to start understanding how to do this…thank you!!! I have two questions for you – first…I live in Canada, do all the sites you mention still work the same way when you live outside of the U.S.? Second…I just wanted to clarify that it’s better to have a .org site on WordPress than a .com site? Is it easy to switch over to .org without losing what content you have already in WordPress? Thank you for making things a little more simple!!

    • So glad that you like the posts! 🙂 As for living in Canada, since I’ve never lived there, I can’t really answer with experience. I’m sorry. For the .org, yes. If you want to have a money making site, .org is the way to go. You can get hosting through BlueHost as described in this post and that gives you a .org WordPress site. 🙂

      • Thank you so much for answering my questions Sarah! I am wondering about clarification on the .org part. When signing up with bluehost it asks for your domain name, is that what needs to be the .org or is it when you actually get into the WordPress site that it needs to be .org?

        Thank you again for all the wonderful info you share with all of us!

  24. I do not have a blog yet, but I have considered it for quite some time. I didn’t know where to begin but this article really helped me with the technicalities, so, THANK YOU! However, I’m stumped on the basics, such as, what to blog about. I have 6 kids, 3 of them are not yet in school so I’m wondering how demanding and time-consuming blogging can be. And how does a blog generate revenue? Thank you so much for your help!

    • The time you put into it depends on what your goals are. If you want to make a full-time living from it, you will want to put full-time hours into it, at least in the beginning, but it’s not all about time spent either. You want to be very wise with your time. You can see my revenue post here.

  25. Hi Sarah,

    My question is one I’m sure you have heard before. How do I identify my passion? How do I know know what to write about?
    I like to take photographs. I have been moved by photos since I was in elementary school. I would pour over and get lost in the photographs in my text books. I am not a working photographer. It is more of a hobby for me.
    Another thing that I like is being that person who encourages and pushes my friends and the young people that I work with, to go after their dreams.
    My other question, do I have to provide a specific product or service to my followers, or is the written content enough?
    Thank you in advance for taking your time to read and reply.

    • I would say to simply ask the people in your life and your friends what THEY want to learn from you. Start your blog about that. Because chances are if you have an audience of a few, more people in the world will want to learn from you too. That is how SarahTitus.com got started! 🙂

  26. I have still not started the blog that has been planted in my heart for about 6 mos now! Thank you for all of the info. I need the confidence boost as I am even new to Facebook! I am a writer and I know that. I feel led to pursue blogging and hate to admit it’s my fear of not being tech savvy enough to get started. You are such an inspiration to me-I love the heart you have for your children. I was you once and became resourceful too. My babies are grown now-you would think “mission accomplished” but no-now the season has changed a lot-but we are all so close and I still look for ways to spend quality time with them and help with the grandchild! Please wish me blessings on my dream-I am going to write anyway-maybe a blog will be a healthy and enjoyable hobby , at least. Thank you again-May God bless your work!

  27. Hi Sarah! I find your blog to be so helpful, it has literally been a manual for me starting my blog. I have a question if you can offer some insight. I purchased hosting and starting my blog on 3/22/16 so my blog is really really new. The most I’ve gotten in page views so far is about 30 so far. Is this something that is maybe status quo for such a new blog? I know that building a blog takes time and lots of dedication so please don’t take this as I’m rushing it at all. I just want to know if this feeling I have is just the nervousness of a new blogger or should i be worried? I thank you so much for your site you’ve encouraged me to do something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time but didn’t have the confidence. You are awesome!

  28. How do the blogs pay? Who pays you when blogging? How does it work when declaring money at tax time? So many questions, sorry! I’m very interested in starting my first blog but am trying to wrap my head around how they actually work!

  29. Thank you for the honest and greatly inspiring article. I am an African University student currently in my third year in Africa. I have looked around and would really want to start an online money making business as I study part time and I have internet all the time, a laptop, computer skills, and the ability to make it work. However, I look around and all people making money online are in USA, Europe, etc. and most opportunities available are for countries outside Africa. This is discouraging me a great deal and I am stuck on how to start. I am currently trying to build a virtual assistant website and see how to make this work. I recently tried to join an online company but it was a scam, and many others do not hire out of the US, or Europe. I am very talented, speak English, and have certificates in French, Spanish, and various African languages. I need your honest advice.

    Thank you,
    Agatha

  30. How is the money made? Do you have to go through a site that pays you or when you reach a certain amount of traffic is when money flows in by itself? As Brooke stated, I would love to stay home with my child and just have that freedom and be able to put my child in after school activities and to be able to have his own room. Please help.

  31. Hello! Love your articles! I am in the early stages of starting my blog and I have come across my first hiccup. I have purchased Genesis and a child Theme. I activated it on my WordPress dashboard. I began to start to customize my site and made a post. But when I search my website, my theme and posts are not showing up. Do you have any suggestions, or is there contact information for WordPress?
    Thank you!

  32. Hey Sarah.

    Thank you so much for all you do. I can’t tell you how much of a blessing it has been since finding your pins about blogging on Pinterest. Anywho, I have a question for you:
    You said to always purchase a child theme, not use a free one. Well when I recently purchased my Bluehost domain, the Genesis parent theme came with it along with, I think, the Genesis child theme. Would that Genesis child theme be considered a free child theme and one I shouldn’t use for my blog?

    Thanks again for everything!

    • Sandrell, good question and it’s cool you got Genesis free as it’s spendy! Genesis is a parent theme, so you’ll want to purchase a separate child theme. I have a child theme recommendation list in this post here. 🙂

      • Oh wait, that’s not true! Oh my goodness, it’s been a while since I purchased my Bluehost, and I’ve been through so much since then, learning this and that, it’s kind of hard to keep up with everything, lol! No, I paid for my Bluehost, and then I PURCHASED the Genesis Framework from StudioPress separately–the same framework in your link. The Genesis sample child theme came with that purchase. I guess that’s my question: that genesis sample child theme, is that one I should use, or should I just buy a new one? Another question: What’s a free child theme? Would examples of that be the themes that are already in our WordPress that you suggested we delete so we wouldn’t get hacked?

        • That theme is fine to keep, however, most bloggers want different options as far as layouts go, so they purchase another child theme, like a cute one or something. 🙂 Totally up to you though as long as you’re on Genesis and got the child theme from Genesis. I would delete all other themes from your blog though. Even if they are not in use, that is how you get hacked! Yes, the themes that are already in your WordPress (minus the Genesis ones), delete them to avoid hacking.

  33. Sarah, I have a few questions:

    1. At the very bottom of your blog, How do you get your blog to say: “Copyright ©2017, Sarah Titus. All Rights Reserved.” Is that just automatic with you hosting your blog through BlueHost?

    2. How do you get your name on all your pictures? I think maybe it’s called a watermark?

  34. Hi Sarah,

    I have started my blog and few times and then get discouraged because I think to myself, “Who wants to visit a blog with five posts.” When you first started your blog did you wait to publish your site until you have a good amount of posts ready or did you publish with just a handful of things and work up from there?

  35. Hello,
    Thank you for all the tips. I am currently working on setting up my own blog. I bought the Genesis Framework, but I can’t seem to find the child themes to choose from. Am I missing something? I am pretty good with technology but am surprised by how much of a struggle I am having with this. Thanks for your help!

    • The child theme you can find anywhere really that works with Genesis, but if you go to my blogging resources page here, you can see the child themes I’ve used in the past and have loved along with some other great options. Just be sure you read them, because they sometimes have options that come WITH Genesis or without and if you already have Genesis, you don’t need to buy it again. 🙂

  36. This is the exact post I have been looking for. I have been researching for weeks and putting posts in Word, but I’m afraid to take the plunge, afraid of failure. My job is so stressful with 2 little ones and I have to do something before they are affected forever. I just don’t know how to get that traffic to my blog once I start it.
    Thanks for a great post!!

    • It’ll come Kristin, as long as you’re posting great stuff and seeking traffic out. Just focus on serving others first and foremost through your blog and you’ll be okay. 🙂 So glad this post helped!

  37. THANKS, Sarah! I have been struggling for about 3 weeks…when I read your post/instructions, a light bulb just went off! I was up all night so excited to start using your techniques….<3 Thanks!! What you are saying goes against what everyone else has been saying and just makes perfect sense… I deleted some things last night and even 2 complete boards. Today my followers are up by 5 (485 total today) after steadily dropping by 1 or 2 every day! WooHoo! I appreciate your help! God bless… LoriJo

    • I rarely ever do what others are doing. In fact, I usually run the opposite way. 🙂 Do what makes sense for you. Don’t think that just because someone is a popular blogger, they know more than you. Your gut is better because everyone’s audience is different. What works for one, may not work for another. Many times they give advice that is only telling 1% of the story, thus we can never replicate it. Even in paid courses. It’s super annoying! I stopped following others a long time ago and just figure things out myself. For me, it works a lot better (I have a system). Of course, not all other bloggers are like that by any means, but some are, so you have to be careful WHO you listen to. So many self-proclaimed experts who know nothing are teaching blogging. Gives the good bloggers a bad name. It’s a scam to get your money. Just do what is best for your blog and you will do great! 🙂 Follow the ones who are genuine and sincerely focus on wanting to help you, not the money.

  38. Hi Sarah,

    So I have been reading up and see there are different ways to make money from a blog. Obviously one way is through products which I hope to get into however if I am just writing post how do you make money? Is this a silly question? Do I just just write interesting things I am passionate about and when people click on my site I get paid? Therefore getting paid through good trafficking (like getting 100,000 page views)?

    • On a post, it could be through ads you have on your site, affiliate links, or sponsored posts. Personally, I don’t do ads or sponsored posts, but they are not wrong and each blog earns in a different way.