How to start a successful blog in 2021 + blogging tips for new bloggers

If you want to start blogging as a side-hustle or a full-time job, you’re in the right place. I’ll tell you how to start a successful blog in 2021.

If you want to see my blog, click here.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links

How to set up a blog

Pick a niche or topic

First of all, you need to think about a niche or topic you’ll want to talk about. Your blog content shouldn’t be super broad (recipes, cleaning, organization and personal development) nor extremely narrow (carrot cake recipes).

It’s also important to know where you’ll promote your blog. If you’ll promote primarily it on Pinterest, your content can be broader. But, if you want to focus on Google SEO, you should niche down.

If you don’t want to niche down, think about the person you want to target. Are they high schools students? Young adults? Parents? Stay-at-home moms? Married people? Single people?

With this in mind, always try to publish content that’ll interest your target audience and ONLY publish that type of content. If you want to target a different audience, create a different blog.

Also, make sure that the topic you’re covering on your blog does well on the platform you want to promote your content.

So, for example, if you’re using Pinterest to promote your content your blog should be about: recipes, home decor, fashion, fitness, lifestyle, personal finance, blogging and marketing. Other niches don’t perform well on Pinterest.

Create a self-hosted blog on WordPress using Bluehost.

The first thing you’ll need to do is to create a self-hosted blog on Wordpress.org (not .com). As your hosting service, use Bluehost.

Bluehost is the web hosting I use and recommend. It’s extremely cheap yet good. Their customer service is amazing, and available 24/7.

You can choose the best plan according to your needs. I’ve chosen the Choice Plus, but the basic plan is fine.

Choose your domain name

You’ll need to choose a domain name for your blog. If you’re still unsure about exactly what you’ll be blogging about, use your name as your domain name.

AND cha-da. You have a website!

Buy a theme for your website

You can use a free theme for your website, but I really don’t recommend it. They don’t look good.

Make the investment, and buy a premium theme for your website that looks good and it’s mobile responsive (super important!). You can customize your theme, so don’t worry if you don’t like the colours or the fonts they use.

The theme I use on my blog is the Harper Theme from 17th Avenue Designs.

Blogging tips:

  • Learn about Google SEO and Pinterest SEO to promote your blog and get pageviews for free
  • Use Tailwind for your Pinterest Marketing
  • Use Canva (free!) to make pins and use Tasty Pins to have a Pin it button
  • Install Yoast SEO (free!), to SEO your blog posts
  • Keep learning blogging tips and look for updates
  • Only use stock photos (free: Pexels and Unsplash/paid: Styled Stock Society, Deposit Photos) or pictures you took yourself. Don’t use other people’s photos without permission
  • Make sure your website is legal: have a privacy policy, a disclaimer, etc.
  • Use affiliate marketing, i.e., link to recommended products. You can get started as a new blogger with Amazon Associates
  • Don’t use too many ads (it doesn’t create a good user experience)
  • Make sure your website is a safe place (I use Wordfence paid plugin — there’s also a free version)
  • Use Grammarly to correct grammar and spelling mistakes
  • Don’t expect immediate growth (some people take more than a year to be successful)
  • Publish consistently (at least once a week) — MOST IMPORTANT TIP
  • Publish high-quality content only, but don’t strive for perfection
  • Publish seasonal content
  • Try to publish original content (no one has ever seen anything like it!). That’s pretty difficult to do, but if you have a completely unheard idea share it on your blog and then on Pinterest
  • Improve your website speed
  • Always think about providing a good user experience
  • See what other successful bloggers are doing and take some ideas, but don’t copy their content

Conclusion

In this post, I told you how to start a successful blog in 2021, how to set up your brand new blog and gave you some blogging tips and recommendations. What is your new blog about? Leave a comment below.

Check out my blog for inspiration

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Ana Rita

Ana Rita

Hello, I’m Ana Rita, a Portuguese law student. I write about topics that are interesting and important to me. Check out my blog: anaritalife.com