Lesson 1: The Art Of Blogging For Beginners

Lesson 1: The Art Of Blogging For Beginners

Blogging for beginners

Blogging is an art and artists who sell their painting get paid.

Welcome to the first lesson in Blogging UniversityThe Art of Blogging for Beginners.

In this first lesson, I will be using my personal domain, www.ReginaldChan.net as the reference point. I started this blog in May 2013 and the below are the stats:

  • 99,900 page views
  • Around 1,000 followers on email
  • Close to 10,000 followers on social media
  • Approximately $8,000 earnings on affiliate sales
  • Awarded top 100 bloggers in Tribber for 2014
  • Honorable mention on huge sites such as Harvard University blog and Yahoo Small Business

Accept my apologies for being bold. At times, I often wondered what it really took me to get this far.

Of course, mistakes I did were:

  • Over 8 years of blogging and making peanuts
  • Started over 30 various websites and having extremely low success
  • Wasted thousand of dollars in ‘guru tips’
  • And probably a dozen more to make me look bad 🙂

With Blogging University, I certainly hope to share all my blogging tips I have collected over the years and helping bloggers to avoid those mistakes I had done in the past.

Download this blogging lesson in PDF now!

Prefer podcast? Hit the play button below:

What blogging lessons will you learn today?

  • Importance of planning your blogging
  • Choosing the various blogging platforms
  • The type of hosting services you would subscribe

Without further delay, let’s kick start the lesson today.

Note: Since this is the first training, the information shared here are relatively very general. This would be a great baseline for any newbie bloggers. Much more extensive blogging tips will follow in the coming lessons.

 

The importance of planning and strategy in blogging

The importance of strategy and planning in blogging

I know only a handful of bloggers who plan their blogging path and this … got to change!

If you want to be make a living out of blogging or become a professional blogger, you need to utilize the power of planning and strategy building.

Planning in blogging is simple. Some simple questions you can start asking yourself are:

  1. What are you writing about?
  2. Who will be your readers?
  3. Why would they want to read your blog?

Now, take a moment to answer the questions above and compare them with the answer sheet below:

  • Very general blog topics (or over 10 different topics of choice)
  • My readers will be anyone who I can find (no specific target)
  • Because it is interesting!

If the above are similar with your answer, then your blogging career will be seriously challenging.

You don’t need a godly plan but at least, a simple strategy that will be your guidance in blogging.

For example, a good blogging plan could easily be:

  1. Very specialized topics (select 3 to 5 related topics)
  2. Targeting readers from the United States aged 18 to 40 who dream of making a living online
  3. Focusing on writing detailed case-studies and tutorials

Having a clearer blogging strategy could easily help you to have a better reach. More on that in the next lesson.

Actionable blogging tips:

Start building your blogging strategy using the simple questions starting with the who, what, where and how. The more detailed your answer are, the better it would be for you down the road.

 

Choosing a blogging platform

Choosing a good blogging platform

There are countless blogging platforms nowadays which includes WordPress (self hosted), WordPress.com and Blogspot.

You won’t go wrong with any of those but if you are planning of starting your career in blogging (seriously), it would best start with having a self-hosted website.

The most common question many blogging newbies is the ‘WordPress vs Blogspot’.

Personally, I would always recommend bloggers to use WordPress platform on their self-hosted domains compared to Blogspot due to the control and features.

The below are some breakdowns for easier decision making.

Advantages of self-hosted WordPress sites:

  • Highly configurable and customizable
  • Absolute freedom
  • The most popular blogging platform (availability of support is huge)

Disadvantages of self-hosted WordPress sites:

  • Slight learning curve required
  • Too much features could be daunting for newbies
  • Very prone to hacking and security issues

Advantages of Blogspot:

  • Setting up would take less than 10 minutes
  • No plugin required
  • Hosted on servers owned by Google (zero cost)

Disadvantages of Blogspot:

  • Limited ability for customization (especially when you want to grow your blog)
  • Abide the Blogspot rules, terms and conditions
  • Risk of losing everything as Google is known of shutting down a site without notice

For beginner bloggers, it is important to choose one platform and stick to it as migrating in the future is very troublesome.

There is no such thing as best of both worlds and thus, go with the blogging platform that best fits your requirements. Again, my personal opinion is that if you are serious in blogging, it is highly recommended to get a self-hosted site for more control.

 

Deciding on the best hosting for your money

What are the common hosting issues

It is not wrong for you to think big when you are a beginner. However, thinking big could easily burn a hole in your wallet.

For those who are using self-hosted domain, you would require a hosting plan. Yes, this is an important start even before starting a blog.

If a domain is your home, a hosting plan is the electricity.

The quality of the hosting plan will determine the level of uptime you are getting. For starters, a website which have tons of downtime is bad for both the blog visitors and search engines.

There are several types of hosting a blogger can choose; shared, reseller, premium hosting and dedicated servers.

Shared hosting

Basically, you are sharing electricity with around 500 to 1,000 websites. While this is probably the most popular hosting plan for many blogging beginners, located in a high traffic server could easily slow down the website loading speed.

On average, you could get a hosting plan that cost $5 per month for a single domain.

Reseller hosting

This is one hosting option which is widely known among advanced and professional bloggers. Instead of getting a hosting package from a hosting company, you subscribe to hosting services from a 3rd party.

What makes this type of hosting an excellent choice for startup bloggers is that you get higher quality hosting in both quality of uptime and customer support.

For example, clients in my reseller hosting packages get free plugin installation, daily backup and ability to host unlimited domains under $5 per month.

Comparing to shared hosting, my reseller hosting package would be much affordable since they are getting a high end support from me personally. Plus, I only allow 10 clients in one server in order for them to have ultimate server speed.

On average, a reseller hosting plan would cost as low as $5 per month to $50 per month.

Premium hosting

If you are worried of those hacking and security flaws, having a premium hosting would be a good option. Basically, you are getting top notch support in terms of backup, security and website performance.

Instead of having 1,000 domains in one server, most premium hosting servers cater only (up to) 10 domains per server. This will ensure that the site performance will not be affected if you ever get a spiked in traffic.

Premium hosting isn’t cheap and it cost around $29 per month. I would suggest getting this only if you have enough traffic and generating enough income for this service.

Dedicated servers

Once you have above 100,000 traffic a month, then you need more firepower. Dedicated servers means that you have the whole server for yourself.

Dedicated servers usually cost around $70 (at least) per month.

 

Blogging lesson recap

For those who are starting a blog, these are the three very basic rules to get started on the right track. While these may seems very petty, don’t be fooled with the advantages these would bring you in the long run.

The best blogging tips? Follow closely to these 3 blogging tips above!

Now, I am going to wrap this blogging lesson up and if you have any questions, fire them up using the comment form below and I’ll get back to you with the answers.

Upcoming blogging lesson: How to plan the perfect blogging strategy?

19 thoughts on “Lesson 1: The Art Of Blogging For Beginners”

  1. Hi Reginald,

    Targeting rocks. Makes your job easier. Write each post with a reader in mind to resonate with your audience.This simple, basic approach helps you avoid wheel spinning for years and years.

    Thanks!

    RB

    • Hi Ryan,

      Great man! Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      For me, I am in love with deep targeting. People often asked me why I would only want 500 traffic a day (average) over 1,000 traffic.

      The answer is simple. I make more sales with 500 targeted readers than 1,000 general readers!

      Appreciate the comment, dear friend!

  2. Hi Reginald,

    Just listened to your podcast, I will recommend your site for my newbie readers.

    Appreciate the effort you put into the podcast and great idea with the university.

    Cheers

  3. I’ve just discovered your site today and you seem to have learnt from prior mistakes and made a real success for this site. I’ve just signed for your e-mail updates.

    Like the great Ryan Biddulph, I agree that targeting is a big help. With focus you have something to work on and achieve.

    • Hey!

      Thanks for commenting. About the mistake, it took me 8 years to ‘overcome’ them. Haha of course, I had a day job so that makes thing much harder.

      Targeting the right people, topic and even the most petty things could help A LOT in blogging. So yes, you nailed it!

      Appreciate the comment and looking forward to see you around here. Feel free to share anything and would be delighted to discuss further 🙂

  4. Hello Reginald,

    The article is Excellent, Effective & Entertaining (Entertaining or Purposeful based on Pictures). I loved the article. Hope your next articles would be rocking than this. Good luck with Blogging University.

    Ahammed Ajmal

  5. Interesting lessons I must say. There is no doubt that many bloggers would actually get hold of the best blogging success if they plan. This is a fundamental takeaway in this post and I am sure many readers would find it very helpful!

    I shared this comment in kingged – the content syndication and social marketing website where this post was found.

    Sunday – kingged contributor

    • Hi Sunday,

      How have you been? It has been sometime now and I thought it would be a great blast for a come back.

      Many more coming in the coming days and I totally appreciate you dropping by!

      *p/s How have you been? Hope you are doing good. I also noticed your site is already rocking big time!

      That’s sweet!

  6. “Blogging is an art and artists who sell their painting get paid.”

    This article reminds me of my art class. Art is a freedom of expression in which writing is integrated. Art means the thought or feelings of the human will be translated through writing, painting, drawing, dancing and singing, and can be understood and feel with the person who will read, watch and listen.

    Blogging is truly and art that beginners should understand.

    I found this post shared on Kingged, the Internet marketing social bookmarking and networking site, and I “kingged” it and left this comment.

  7. Thanks so much for this posting. I am starting a blog eventually and found your articl to be very informative. In the mean time, I did my first site. Is it good? questionsforcouples[dot]jemausa[dot]com

  8. Hey Reginald,

    It’s been a while man. I hope everything has been going well. I like the Blogging University you have started. You accomplished a lot in a year and I will come back for more. If anyone wants to learn blogging you are definitely a great person to teach them the way.

    Take care Reginald!

    • Steven,

      Dear old friend. How have you been? Rocking yourself mate?

      It’s busy here! Copy writing contacts, some consultation services and even moderator positions. I’m getting my hand full but like what others said, the more you have means the more food you can put on the table 🙂

      Thanks for your kind words and do share your ideas if you have any ya!

  9. it was really nice reading all these lessons you have given. I have recently started my blog nextollout[dot]com and will surely follow the path you have shown to prepare strategy for my blog. thanks.

  10. Hi Reginald,

    What an informative post for the bloggers, especially for the newbies
    The podcast is really worth listening, Thanks Chan for sharing this wonderful tuto, in fact i missed this post and today i found it on the net.

    I appreciate you for the time and pain you are taking to spread the word about blogging. All your efforts are highly appreciable and praiseworthy. I am your posts are really useful with lot of useful information to the readers especially to the new bloggers.

    Thank you Chan, I here on your page after a long gap, Happy that I am back today.
    Keep continue to share your knowledge to the benefit of your fellow beings.

    May you have a great weekend with lot of joyous events!!!

    Best

    ~ Philip

    PS:
    Hey Chan I found this informative piece at Kingged dot com and up-voted it and posted a comment too.
    Have a good time ahead
    Thanks
    ~ Phil

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