Because of my full-time job, I work with people of a variety of different ages. And when people first found out that I was expecting, they had a lot of advice to give me. Some of it I took to heart; some of it I let pass, but one of the pieces of wisdom that really stuck out to me was the importance of having a support network. Lots of people, particularly people who were my parent’s age, talked about how much they valued playgroups and mommy and me groups. In fact, for many of them, they developed lifelong friendships through those groups.
So I struggled to find play groups that my daughter, J, and I could be a part of. Don’t get me wrong; there are plenty of them. But most seemed to be the drop-in type, and it became difficult to develop meaningful relationships that way. So then, I turned to Meetup to create my own play group. It was only semi-successful. Because, while we have a large group online, very few people actually turn up physically for the events. There are always naptimes to juggle and schedules to manage. It’s overwhelming, and while I have developed some friendships through the group, it hasn’t been like the playgroups or mommy and me groups of old.
What was I to do? Well, it turns out that the community I was craving had been right in front of me all along- the blogging community. When I started my blog about natural parenting and healthy living, suddenly all of these like-minded people came out of the woodwork! And best of all, I could talk to them virtually any time I wanted, not just at some Thursday afternoon gathering.
So, whatever your parenting style may be or whatever aspects of parenting you are passionate about, you will be able to find similar people online. And yes, you could just visit other people’s sites, post comments, and hope to hear back. But why not start a community yourself? Why not write about the things you care about and start a conversation with others?
[clickToTweet tweet=”Starting a blog is easy. If you put in time and effort you’ll make money. How great is that!” quote=”Besides, setting up a blog is easy, and if you get bit by the blogging bug and put some time and effort into it, you’ll make money to boot. How great is that!”]
I seriously only have one regret about blogging. Do you want to know what it is? It’s that I didn’t start a blog sooner.
So, if you have something that you are passionate about and like to write, then you really need to start a blog! Many people start out blogging using Bluehost. Their site speed is good for beginners. Once you get more than 3,000 or so visitors per day, you might feel your site slowing down, and you’ll probably want to start looking into faster hosting options. But Bluehost is excellent for getting your feet wet. They offer hosting for the very low cost of $3.49 per month when you sign up for 36 months. (You pre-pay for all 36 months up front, but if you decide to cancel at any time, they offer a money-back guarantee. So, for example, if you had Bluehost for 6 months and then decided to switch, they would refund the remaining 30 months. Nice!)
So are you going to do it? Are you finally going to start your blog? If so, here is how:
Here are the step-by-step instructions for getting started with Bluehost. Don’t panic! Yes, there are 17 steps, but you’ve got this! It’s actually super easy, and I am here to help you along the way.
1) Click here to be re-directed to Bluehost. Once you are there, click the big green “Get Started Now” button.
2) Select the “starter” plan. Of course, they will try to upsell you to a larger plan. Resist the temptation!
3) You’ve already decided on a domain name at this point. To register your domain name with Bluehost, enter it under the “new domain” box and click “next.”
4) Enter all of your account and contact information.
5) Continue down to the “package information” section. You get the cheapest monthly rate by selecting 36 months. It is important to remember that Bluehost charges you for the full the 36 months up front. In other words, you are pre-paying for the service. But, also remember that they have a money-back guarantee, so you won’t risk losing your money.
There are other services available on this screen but don’t worry about those yet. You can always add them later.
6) Enter your billing information, agree to the service agreements, and then click “submit.”
7) They are going to try to upsell you, again. Ignore! Ignore! These could be added later if you need them. Click “complete.”
8) Ta da! You officially have a Bluehost account. Next, you need to create your password.
9) On this screen, you’ll create your Bluehost account password. Don’t forget it! Make sure it is super strong but also make sure you remember it! Ha, ha!
10) As soon as you create your strong, but memorable, password, you’ll be prompted to install WordPress. Click “let’s begin” and then “Install.”
11) Select the domain where you want to install WordPress, but leave the directory field blank so that you install WordPress to your root domain. Click “Check Domain.”
12) Click “show advanced options” and then name your site (you can always change it later), create a username for the WordPress install, and create a WordPress login pass- word. You’ll want to make sure that “Automatically create a new database for this installation” and “I have read the terms and conditions of the GPLv2” are checked. Click “Install Now.”
13) Close out of the upsell (again, sheesh!) and watch the little bar at the top of the next screen turn green. That means WordPress has been successfully installed.
14) Click “View credentials” and then “View” on the following screen. Remember, to get your password. You only have a 12-hour window to do it.
15) Next, you will see your WordPress Installation Credentials. This page shows everything you need to start using WordPress.
16) Open up a new tab in your browser and navigate to your “Admin URL” from the previous screen. Fill out your username and password and then click “Log In.”
17) That’s it!!!!!!
Congratulations! You are officially a blog owner!
But don’t stop there! Remember me saying something about earning money from your blog? Well, it’s true. There are lots of ways that you can make money blog… ads, writing sponsored posts, creating and selling your own products. But the best way, in my opinion, is through affiliate marketing. That is how you literally make money in your sleep. Or while your baby naps. Or both! Affiliate marketing is where you talk about something you genuinely, truly love and if someone buys that thing, you get part of the money from the sale.
That is where my primary source of income comes from. Every time I talk about affiliate marketing, I always mention Michelle Schroeder-Gardner. If you’ve spent any time on my blog my income reports, I know what you are probably thinking, “Shut up already about Michelle!” But seriously, I owe her so much because I 100% learned everything about affiliate marketing (how to do it, how to apply to companies, etc.) from her. And if you don’t know anything about Michelle, here’s the details…
She’s the creator of Making Sense of Cents, and she has developed an online course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I have been watching for a while, mainly because she makes over $100,000 a month blogging. Whaaaatttt?!?!?! It sounds crazy, but it is true! And half of her income comes from affiliate sales (meaning that she earns a commission on the sale of certain items). And her course, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, is all about teaching others how to do the same.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Just think, you could pay for your kid’s college in a couple of months w/ affiliate marketing.” quote=”Just think about that for a second. You could pay for your kid’s entire college in just a couple of months using Michelle’s course material.”]
Half of Michelle’s monthly income comes from affiliate sales (meaning that she earns a commission on the sale of certain items). And her course, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, is all about teaching others how to do the same.
Michelle’s course content works! I was able to earn an affiliate income within my first 30 days of blogging by implementing what she taught me. And then I made 15x times (fifteen times!!) that my second month. And I am not the only one that her course content has helped. I know of other people who were already earning money blogging, took Michelle’s course, and suddenly found themselves making double or even triple what they were making before. See? She knows what she is talking about.
When I bought Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, I paid $197. It was totally worth the money. Not only did it teach me how to earn money through affiliate marketing, but it also gave me access to Michelle. I know I’ve said it before, but I can’t get over the fact that someone as successful as she would want to help me, but she does! And she helps every single person who buys her course. She promotes my work, immediately answers my questions, and basically bends over backward to help me succeed. Plus, when I purchased her course, I also immediately got access to her closed Facebook group. It is filled with people who are just like Michelle, all willing to help each other at the drop of a hat. It is a group of folks I feel so blessed to have met!
Okay, I’ll stop. That was a lot of info in one blog posts. You can check out some of my other posts to help you with blogging. And of course, you can always send me a comment or email with questions too!
Now, I want to hear from you! What are you going to blog about?
This post contains affiliate links. For more information, click here. Also, if you do utilize a link, THANK YOU!
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