How To Blog Like A Pro Even If You’re A Beginner Blogger
Without Also Spending A Fortune!
When you first get into the blogging community and want to start your own blog, it can be very overwhelming. There is so much information out there, and you want to do things right! Knowing which information to follow is hard, and you can end up taking some wrong turns. I remember wanting to go pro immediately! I started my first blog back in 2016 and since then I’ve had a few different goes at it. I learnt the hard way, through trial and error with my own blogs.
I’ve learnt how to start off on the right foot to give myself the best chance of being successful.
I started Beautifully Fragile last year, around September time. She’s still a baby! Since then I’ve just hit 2,000 page views with my 30 posts, and have started building an email list. I’ve got a small Instagram following, but my combined efforts already helped me get free things sent to me + affiliate sales!
Today I want to share with you the steps you can take to help you get off on the right foot and blog like a pro, even if you’re just a beginner.
*This post may contain affiliate links. I want to share the tools + resources I’ve used to build my blog because they can and WILL help you grow yours. I earn a small commission from purchases made but this doesn’t affect the price you pay. Thank you!*
Tip 1 – Start Off On The Right Foot // Choose WordPress, Domain Name + Self-Hosting
If you want to look like a pro blogger, then you must choose to self-host your blog. This basically means you pay a hosting company to have all the files behind your blog, keep the website live, and provide technical support for your blog.
If you want to make money from your blog and appear to be a professional, then this is the only way to go!
The other option is a free blog, provided by WordPress.com or Blogger (Google’s blogging program). Whilst both of these options are perfect if you’re running a hobby blog, if you want to be a pro and potentially make money and grow a business, then you will NEED to go self-hosted.
I use HostGator for my blog. It’s done a great job so far whilst my blog is receiving low page views overall (compared to the 10k+ monthly views that need a more dedicated service!).
The biggest selling point for me was that I could pay for it monthly, which helps me massively. I didn’t have the funds to be able to pay out a few hundred pounds for hosting in one go, so having the monthly option makes life much easier for me.
They’ve also been amazing, their customer service is great, and when I had issues with setting up WordPress, their live chat agents fixed it ASAP.
Check out their pricing plans here and get started for just $2.75 per month!
Once you have set-up your hosting, you’ll be able to do a one-click install of WordPress and get started designing your blog! For me, it’s a no brainer to use WordPress, it’s the best way to have complete and utter control over what your website looks like, and means there’s no limit to what you can do with it.
Tip 2 – Designing A Professional Looking Blog
So you’ve got WordPress set up and you’re ready to start blogging! The next thing you need to do is set up a theme for your website.
Personally, I don’t think that you should overly stress about this, especially as there are so many awesome options out there that aren’t going to break the bank! I love Creative Market – they have so many different options and they’re affordable and easy to install. Check out their theme section and see all of the stunning creative options for your blog. They’re professional-looking, and even the cheaper ones have an amazing level of customisation available.
Another amazing tool I use for designing my own pages within my blog (I designed my home page from scratch using this tool), is Elementor. There’s a free option you can use (which I’m currently using), and there are amazing add-ons which give you further functionality. I purchased the Essential Add-ons package for more blog capability and being able to add certain widgets to my home page.
I would 100% recommend Elementor for helping you build web pages for your blog. They’re so simple to use! Just drag and drop and fiddle around with the options until you get exactly what you’re looking for.
Creating a professional-looking blog doesn’t have to cost the earth, and you can certainly make a huge impact without paying a blog designer to create one for you. Potentially when you’re earning a decent income from your blog it might be worth having a professional web-designer create you a bespoke website crafted to perfection.
However, for now, taking the time to use these tools will get you to a point where you look professional and can definitely start building a successful blog.
Tip 3 – Build A Brand Document So You Know What Your Brand Is
Ahh branding! It’s a monstrous task, that personally I absolutely love but also struggle with!
Creating a cohesive brand that looks the same across all platforms, helps you stand out from the crowd and be recognised, and also perfectly communicates what you do – this is hard work and takes serious effort + forward planning.
Write up a document that details all of the below, to help make sure that when it comes to creating content for any part of your business, it fits in with your brand.
There are quite a few things to take into consideration:
- Colours, fonts and style of writing across your blog, social media platforms, emails etc // this one sets up the basis for what you look like online to others. Being consistent is really important and will help you appear more professional, and your business legit.
- Aesthetics in terms of photos, the styling of graphics and any additional content such as Instagram Stories // trying to keep your content in the same style and just switch it up slightly. You might feel you are being repetitive, but actually you are helping others build recognition for who you are and what you do!
- Content + niche of your topics // keeping to the same kind of blog posts and making sure the content aligns with each piece you create. You don’t want to confuse your readers, so concentrate your work down one specific line + speak to one person in the audience not all of them!
- Your mission statement + what you’re trying to achieve with your blog // take the time to write out your mission statement – the reason why you created this blog, who you are trying to help, and what your business overall is trying to achieve. Focusing in on exactly why you are working on your blog will help you fine-tune your content and will help you look more professional right from the start!
- Your voice + how you package yourself // when creating any content, it’s important to keep your own true voice and avoid trying to sound like other people. I read somewhere that all blogs should be super conversational and informal, and I just don’t talk or write like that! I think my style is a little more constructed and formal, and that’s what comes naturally to me when I write. I’m going to keep true to myself and just write what comes naturally because otherwise, it’ll sound strange and forced, and that’s not what I want. Keep true to your own true self and write the way that comes naturally to you. Keep it consistent + get your message out there in your own way.
Branding takes a lot of time, and done right is a huge element of any successful business.
I’m constantly learning about branding because I’ve still got so much work to be done, but these are the basics and are pretty crucial when it comes to building a recognisable, professional blog!
Tip 4 – Write Informative + Original Content
Unfortunately, when you’re not really famous, no-one is really interested in the small details of your life. It doesn’t add value to their lives and you won’t earn much traction by doing this kind of content. And you certainly will not come across as a professional blogger.
Anyone who wants to become a pro blogger needs to focus on writing informative and original content that provides value to other people.
You need to be writing blog posts that teach people something new or gives them an answer to a problem they are facing in their everyday lives. This is how you become an authority and how you grow a community of people who follow you.
People will not follow you if you do not lead.
You need to look at the kind of content that gets the most shares online. Look at your Twitter feed and see all of the content being posted by professional bloggers in your niche – do they post fluff? NOPE. They’re giving away value, generously, all day long.
If you want to be a professional blogger, then you need to do the same.
Tip 5 – Start Building An Email List FROM THE START
If you want to make money from your blog long-term, then you need to start an email list sooner rather than later.
Right from the start, you will get people signing up to your email list if you set it up in the right way. Why miss out on those first few subscribers?!
These are the champions of your brand, the originals, the people who have been there from day 1 and will sing about you because they’ve been your most loyal fans. Don’t miss out on getting these people in your community!
I use MailerLite for my email marketing because they have a free plan for up to 1000 subscribers, and they’re AMAZING. Honestly, I’ve tried various different email providers over the years: GetResponse, MailChimp, Aweber – but none compare to MailerLite.
It’s just SO EASY to use and I love it!
You can create simple forms using their drag and drop builder, which makes gathering email addresses so simple. You can also create landing pages and pop-ups that are stunning yet so easy to actually set up. There are also options for lists, segments and groups within your subscriber community, meaning you can divide people out based on their interests.
I would recommend this to every single blogger I met, especially if they’re just starting out and want to look professional without breaking the bank. A lot of pro bloggers would also recommend ConvertKit, which looks amazing too but is a lot more expensive. It’s currently out of my price range and I haven’t personally tried it. But definitely something to consider if you have the funds and you want to look at further options.
ConvertKit has just launched their “freemium” version where you can create forms and landing pages for free, and then either pay the start-up price of $29 per month to start emailing your list, or get 100 subscribers with each recommendation you get for someone else to start a paid plan. This might be something worth considering!
Whichever email service provider you choose, working on building an email list from day dot is really important and you won’t ever regret doing it, especially if you choose MailerLite and it’s free until you get over 1000 subscribers!
Making money with your blog and business will definitely rely on your email list in the long run. Your email list and being able to contact your own fans directly is so key. Any followers you have on Instagram or Pinterest still belong to that specific platform whereas email subs are all yours! Nurture them, talk to them like you would on social media, send them value, behind-the-scenes, photos and videos. Grow your connection to these loyal fans and you’ll definitely see the benefits when you have products/services/affiliate items etc to send them.
I hope you have found plenty of tips to get started with on your pro blogger journey! There are literally hundreds of tips I could (and will be!) sharing with you through Beautifully Fragile, and it’s amazing being able to do so. Blogging more so than ever has so much value and opportunity. Combining it with other mediums and getting your brand and business out in the online world has never been easier, more enjoyable and more profitable!
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