WASHINGTON: The internet has drastically revolutionized the world we live in today. In many ways the world of two decades ago seems as far removed from our collective consciousness as the middle ages is from the modern era. There isn’t any fabric of society that the internet has not improved, including publishing.
As a matter of fact publishing is one of the principle, top ten uses of the internet. Blogging in particular has increased publication. Just as an example, there are over eight thousand searches for ” How to create a blog “.
As the internet creeps further and further into the social fabric of today’s global society and advances in technology scramble to catch up to the ever-increasing demand for things to see and do on the internet, blogging has become increasingly easier to do and extremely more cost effective. There are so many avenues available on the internet, everyone can join.
There are a number of ways to start a blog. Following are 6 basic steps.
First pick a topic to create a blog
The internet, or the world wide web as the url moniker was annotated to emphasize, is just that , very wide. To get your work found by as many users as possible, you need a significant amount of content devoted to your topic. Especially if you expect Google, the world’s premier search engine, to consider publishing your content.
The more trendy the topic, the more difficult it is to get ranked and seen by the most viewers on the internet.
Ideally, selecting a topic that you have the most interest in or experience with will make the writing process that much easier and your blog that much more relatable. Establishing authority in a subject does not come instantly. It takes a bit of practice.
Additionally, to position yourself as an expert, or influencer, pick one subject and get very good at it.
Do your research
Researching is pivotal. I mentioned the importance of authority. Research lends credibility to what you say. And researching does not stop at the topic. The audience you write for is a fundamental part of that research equation. Their interest, habits, likes and dislikes help determine what content Google’s ranking algorithms favor most.
Researching your topic should come naturally if it is familiar to you. The more familiar you are with the topic the more others interested in that topic will see the need to consult your blog for advice. Researching your audience is easy with Google Trends. It provides up to date information from around the globe on what most interests people. Refining your search can help you tailor your blog content to fit in with the most common trends and improve your search visibility.
Best of all it is free.
Create a blog website
There are a number of ways to get this started. Following are a few.
Depending on how intensive your project is you may opt to build your own website. This requires 3 things.
- First a domain name. Purchase one from GoDaddy for as little as $1.99. Your domain is the name of your site and the generic way people refer to your blog when accessing it over the internet.
- Second, Hosting. Hosting can be the most expensive part of creating your own website, roughly $60 for three years. Hosting is the digital space that your content is stored on over the world wide web for other to access. One hosting site is WP-Engine.com
- Third, is a theme, also called a content management system, or CMS. There are a number to choose from. Joomla, Drupal, Word Press are examples of some of the more prominent ones on the market today. Search Word Press Themes to see a selection of themes tailored to your site focus.A CMS helps coordinate and provide both the graphical interface your user sees and establishes the structure, layout and organization of the content, making it easily accessible over multiple devices.
At one point, this was the way to create a blog. Currently, however, there are a number of sites that simplify the process. Wix for instance, provides everything (domain, hosting,CMS) at the click of a button on it’s easy to use platform.
Sites like Blogspot, Google’s free blogger platform, help brand new bloggers on a budget get started. Check out Wix, Blogger, Tumblr, and Yola. They offer a number of different packages. Usually, the more you pay, the higher your content ranks, unless you are just that good and everyone wants to see your content.
Write a post
The most fun part on how to create a blog, ideally, or any creative writing experience is actually writing the post. This is where all your creative skill needs to be utilized. Your content needs to be gripping, challenging to the reader’s eye and most of all interesting. It does not need to be overly technical unless the topic or the target audience demands it. I would have added it as part of the research section.
If it does, check out Strunk and White’s Elements of Style or Stylish Academic Writing by Helen Sword. A style guide gives your writing a bit of a boost. Another great source is the free app downloaded to your toolbar is Grammarly. This free software highlights typos, grammar errors and plagiarism in your writing.
Use target keywords
Use your target keywords at least three times in your post. That way Google knows you are familiar with the inner workings of the search algorithm. Target keywords are the search strings that people input in a search engine to find your content. It needs to be concise yet comprehensive. Your main focus keyword should be in the Title, the SEO title, the Meta Description and in the first paragraph. Keywords should be added to the ALT Text on images.
Use Original pictures and images
One thing that improves a blogs ranking is original content. Blogging about a NY Mets game is not the same as having pictures with the players or footage you captured of a game-winning play. Or even a large group of fans in the team’s apparel. These keep your reader interested for longer. It also makes them more inclined to share your blog if the images are especially exciting. If not for your sake, just to get the attention of their social media friends.
You cannot use photos or images you do not have a right to use. If you did not take it, or have the permission of the photographers to use the image, then you can’t. Search for websites that feature “creative commons’ or free use images like Pexels.com.
Posting frequently separates top-notch blogs from average generic sites. The internet is an impulse-driven engine accessible 24-hours a day by millions and millions of users. It is the home to late night insomniacs, anti-social pre-teens thriving with ADHD and every tech-junkie with a smartphone. They all want something new to satisfy their attention circuits and keep their adrenal glands pumping with excitement. Pick a schedule. Even once a week or every other week.
And let your audience know when to expect your blog to feature new content.
Sharing on Social Media is equivalent to deciding which store or stores to showcase your product. Blogging is a business and there are avenues to make money. But it takes work and knowledge.
. Those who captivate a reader’s attention and influence social trends make the big bucks. There are hundreds of platforms like Twitter , Pinterest and Facebook with millions of users just dying to read your content. There are also plugins that automatically complete this task for you, text copy and paste is too much to handle. Always include a #hashtag in your post. It increases visibility. Branding is complete only when users favorably identify your promotion.