How to Start a Blog in India (in 2022): The Beginners Guide
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Setting up your own blog is much easier than you think. As the digital era booms in India, more and more people want to get online to make money and build a presence.
Why not start a blog?
Before we jump on to blog creation, let’s look at some of the common doubts you may have about starting a blogging career in India.
Do I need technical skills to start and manage a blog in India?
You don’t need to have the technical knowledge to develop a successful blog in India. But having it can be an advantage to avoid paying freelancers for blog design, optimizing your blog, and covering aspects that can help grow your blog. As you punch the way to blog, you will acquire skills to help you stand out from the competition.
Can I create a blog for free?
Yes, you can, but there is a catch. Free blogging platforms hold a lot of crucial features back. They do not give you complete control over any of your blog aspects.
Investing in a self-hosted blog service is essential if you’re serious about making money off your blog. You will sound professional, authoritative, and credible this way once you start publishing content.
How much does it cost to start a blog in India?
With Bluehost, you can spend Rs.179 monthly getting your blog set up.
How to make money from blogging in India?
There are many ways to make money out of a blog. Some popular methods are affiliate marketing, sponsored content, offering services, selling digital products like eBooks and courses, running ads, etc.
How long does it take for a beginner blogger to start making money?
I don’t promise a time frame as the success rate depends on the effort levels. However, I see most beginners pick up the momentum within one to two years.
How much does a beginner blogger earn in India?
A beginner blogger in India will earn between Rs.8000 and Rs.20,000. These numbers can grow and are highly influenced by blog authority, relevant blog traffic, and engagement factors. So, a blogger must continue finding ways to be creative and offer value to their audience to secure their trust and eventually grow income.
Let’s dive into the actual topic – starting a blog in India.
Step 1: Understand why you want to blog
There could be many reasons for a person to start a blog.
After all, blogging is a fascinating way of making money, and all you need to get started is a laptop with an Internet connection.
Many successful bloggers reveal their reason for starting blogging was financial freedom, and I’m one of them. And I’m proud to say I’m achieving that every single month.
You must know your blogging goals before you actually start a blog. Although this could change with time, I believe having clarity from the commence is vital.
If you have no idea about it, the following are some of the reasons for a person to start blogging:
1. Sharing a passion
It happens when you’re passionate about something, but your family and friends couldn’t care less. If that’s your situation, a blog can be a great way to share your thoughts with people who share similar interests.
Not only do you enjoy doing it, but it can also be therapeutic.
2. Add value
You can help others with your expertise on a specific topic with a blog. It is a great feeling knowing you are being able to inspire people, and it only makes you do more.
You’re making people’s lives better and making their time productive.
3. Build authority
You may want to build trust and credibility in your industry. Right?
A blog does that.
As a matter of fact, this blog you’re on does that for me.
You will be flooded with personal and professional growth opportunities when you earn authority over time by helping others with your expertise.
4. Make money
Yes, you can make money blogging. While I can pull in $1000 to $2000 per month, some bloggers make over $30k to $100k/month, which puts me to shame.
I also want to set your expectation and ensure you are more practical to understand that building a profitable blog takes a lot of your time, effort, and investment. However, I promise you will earn money from blogging if you play it for the long haul.
5. Meet new people
Being an Introvert, it has been difficult for me to meet new people and start fruitful conversations.
It is not the case when you run a blog. As you drive a new audience, peers, and Influencers to your blog who share similar interests as you, you’d be surprised to see it’s not hard anymore to talk to the people.
6. Land your dream job
Being an Engineer, I hated doing a sales job after graduating college. Every day was a struggle; every rupee was precious, and I wanted out. One fine day, I decided to follow my passion for blogging which eventually helped me get into many other businesses.
Having a blog is a great way to showcase your skills and expertise to land your dream jobs.
7. Gain skills
You will master some of the high-paying skills like WordPress website design, Content marketing, Logo and visuals design, copywriting, SEO, affiliate marketing, and more when you start a blog and manage it on your own.
Step 2: Find the right blog niche.
A blog niche is a focused area of a broader market your blog serves precisely. To put it simply, a niche is a sub-area of a large market.
For example, take a broader industry like Personal Development in which Happiness, Personal Brand Building, Religious & Spirituality, Leadership, Career Development, etc., can be the niches.
You can even narrow down these niches to blog for a specific range of audiences, avoiding burnout. You can enhance your blog categories and serve broader audience groups as you achieve considerable heights.
In three easy steps, let’s learn how to find a profitable blog niche.
1. List your passion and skills
A jumping-off point for finding a blog niche in India is listing your skills and passions that you’re good at and enjoy doing. There are two good reasons for this:
The first reason to start with the area you’re passionate about is that building a lucrative blog business takes time and energy. Before making the rupee, you will need to invest effort into setting up your blog, content marketing, SEO, blog promotion, driving web traffic, etc. This chore is best done as the chore of love. If not, you will soon give up.
The second reason to start with things that you’re good at is that the audience must feel that you’re authentic. You can’t fake it by putting scraped or lousy content after referring to a couple of competitors; people know their stuff. It probably won’t pay off if you don’t have decent knowledge or the zeal to master your niche. A greater understanding of your target group and their needs and your niche expertise helps your brand message resonate with prospects and sets you unique in the market.
2. Identify Content gaps to fill
You need to know your target group’s problems and develop ideas to fix them. As a blogger, you will be more successful the better you become at helping people.
Think like a reader and note down what you wish existed that doesn’t.
Competition is good; look at them and understand their pros and cons to surpass them by filling gaps with your talent.
3. Assess niche potential
You must ensure your niche is broader enough to be feasible but not so extensive it’s non-feasible to aim. You can inspect many ways to determine whether a niche is viable. Three significant ways are:
a) Keyword Research
Use keyword research tools like SEMrush, plug in the keyword related to your niche and see the monthly searches people make, which helps identify if the niche has a market. SEMrush even measures the competitive angle for niche keywords with K.D. (Keyword Difficulty) metric, ranging from 0 to 100%. The higher the percentage is, the more difficult the competition will be to rank for that term. Focusing on low K.D. Keywords give you an excellent chance to rank top on Google as a newbie.
b) Look at the trends
You need to peek at what’s happening in your niche and what people are conversing about. Google Trends is a great free tool for understanding the popularity of your niche keywords.
Unlike SEMrush, it doesn’t show you the exact monthly searches. Instead, it maps search terms’ popularity trends graphically. For example, see how the popularity of the terms’ cricket in India’ and ‘football in India’ varied over the year.
c) Competitor research
The final step in evaluating your niche is competitor analysis, monetizing their blogs.
- Is it through affiliate marketing? If yes, what is the range of products you can promote? Can you incorporate those into your content?
- Is it through digital products? Are audiences purchasing eBooks, courses, webinars, and consultation services?
- Is it through advertising? If yes, what’s the revenue model? How much a blogger makes with a certain amount of traffic?
Pro tip: The best blog niche can be spotted somewhere at the point where your passion, audience needs, and market potential aligns. So take your time getting to that.
Recommended Reading: 15 Best and Profitable Blog Niches in India
Step 3: Choose a blogging platform
For publishing content and blogging in India, you need a platform. I recommend WordPress.org because for the following reasons:
- Set up the blog with no coding knowledge.
- Over 58,000+ themes and plugins to work with.
- Create content easily and manage it.
- Design or add the new functionality as you want.
- Control over your blog; design, content creation, and scaling to monetization.
- Seamless integration with page builders and tools to make your blog more appealing.
- A massive community for discussing possibilities with and helping each other.
So for someone new to want to start a blog in India, WordPress.org is the right choice.
Recommended Reading: 7 of the Best Blogging Platforms in India
Step 4. Select a domain name
A domain name is your blog’s address by which you will be identified on the Internet.
For example, My blog address is www.bloggingexplained.com. My friend Nikola Roza uses his full name as a domain URL for his blog, and some bloggers get creative with their domain names, like inspiretothrive.com, agirlinprogress.com, etc.
In any case, it’s easy to register and manage your domain name with Bluehost. Plus, you will get your new domain free for one year with a specific Webhosting plan you opt for.
A professional, easy-to-read, and brandable domain name helps you stand out in the crowd and improves your online presence.
Consider the following tips to get a great domain name for your blog:
- Avoid numbers, hyphens, and symbols that make it harder to say and remember.
- Be intuitive; find a domain name that clearly conveys your blog business.
- Try to secure a top-level TLD, like .com, to sound more legitimate and authoritative. Country-specific TLD works great if you’re planning to grow a local blog business. For instance, .in for India.
- Use dictionaries like WordPlays and Thesaurus to collect synonyms and catchy words from your niche, unleashing creativity.
Step 5: Create your web hosting account
Since you’re just starting, understanding and exploring the web hosting choices can be overwhelming. To help you, I recommend beginner-friendly hosting, secured, affordable, and offers good customer support to sky-kick your blogging journey.
The name is Bluehost.
Why is Bluehost my #1 recommendation for someone who wants to start a blog in India?
- Officially recommended by WordPress.org.
- Affordable, even for new bloggers.
- Free domain name for the first 12 months, saving Rs.1000-1500.
- Free SSL certificate (HTTPS) is one of Google’s ranking factors.
- Easy setup wizard to onboard you with a brand new blog in just a few minutes.
- Help 24/7 via chat, phone, or email.
- 30-day money-back policy.
Step 6: Install WordPress on your blog
Follow this video tutorial that walks through the process of setting up your new blog in India using Bluehost step-by-step:
Bluehost should send you an email with new hosting credentials and setup instructions after payment. Follow the instructions link, and you will be ready with a new website/blog in a few minutes.
When the installation is complete, you can use the admin URL to log in to your WordPress dashboard. It usually looks like https://yourdomain.com/wp-admin.
Step 7: Design your WordPress blog
After running through the WordPress setup wizard from Bluehost’s Cpanel, you will get to see your new WordPress dashboard like this:
a) Five Initial essential WordPress settings to do
The following settings are simple and can be done in 15-20 minutes, so don’t get cold feet.
#1. Reset your admin password
Weak and default passwords can make your blog vulnerable. So create a hard-to-crack password and lock it safe.
By accessing your profile from the dashboard’s top-right area, you can do that. And then, scroll down to the Account Management section, as shown in the image below.
#2. Configure general settings
You will need to navigate to Settings –> General to do so.
- Site title: Change the default title from “My WordPress Site” to your blog name.
- Tagline: By default, it is “Just Another WordPress Website.” It should be such that it resembles your blog.
- Membership: Uncheck to avoid spammers.
- New user default role: Subscriber.
- Timezone: Set it up as per your regional time.
#3. Delete default (dummy content)
A “hello world” dummy content will be created on your page and post sections by default upon WordPress installation. It may look as shown in the image below:
Although it does not harm you, delete it to make your blog more professional.
#4. Change your permalink structure
Permalink refers to the default URL structure of the blog posts you publish. In WordPress, by default, it is www.yoursitename.com/?p=123 which is not communicative.
To make it right, visit settings–>permalinks, select “post name” structure and save it.
#5. Moderate comments
Don’t allow spammers to enter your blog with junk comments. You must approve the comments before they go live on your blog. Here’s how you set such moderation:
Visit settings–>discussion–> Tick comment must be manually approved option and save.
b) WordPress pages and posts
You must create essential pages like ‘Home,’ ‘About,’ and ‘Contact.’
To start adding a new page to your WordPress website, click Add New under Pages.
You will see the WordPress editor with blocks. Each block has controls, like adding a new paragraph/heading/visual/bullet list/quote/table/colors/downloadable file/button, etc., and can be accessed with the ‘+’ icon.
Next, add the page title content, set the custom permalink for the page, upload a featured image that resembles your page, and preview the page to check if everything seems fine. If yes, hit the publish button.
Once you have published the page, you will see an acknowledgment that the new page is live and ready to view.
The exact process works for posts as well.
You can edit and update options whenever you want to modify page/post information.
c) WordPress plugins
A WordPress plugin is like a tool that helps you customize and improve your website functionality without sinking your teeth into coding.
WordPress store has thousands of free and paid plugins available in various categories such as security, design, SEO, social media sharing, backups, etc. Depending on your website design and functionality needs, you can opt for the plugins.
I recommend reading and following the 16 Best WordPress Plugins for New Bloggers guide I curated to avoid complications and have a smooth setup.
d) Installing a WordPress theme
Installing a theme is one of the final steps in setting up your new WordPress blog. You can install one from your WordPress directory under the ‘Appearance-> Themes’ section or upload it after getting it from 3rd party theme creators.
Every theme you access from the WordPress depository is either free or freemium. Use the theme search bar if you know any name or browse by applying a feature filter to narrow down a specific range of themes.
Here are my two top favorites:
On the other hand, we have page builders like Elementor and their addons in the form of plugins; they take your design to a new level. Once you install them, you can access pre-templates and blocks to build your site better.
After browsing and selecting your theme, press the ‘Install’ and ‘Activate’ buttons.
Next, go to your WordPress dashboard ->Appearance ->Customizer, where you can tweak the blog’s layout.
You can navigate through various settings in the left-side customizer and preview the site on the right before making it live. You can add/modify the header, footer, blog layout, colors, typography, etc.
You can access features depending on the version (free or paid).
Step 8: Write and publish the first blog post
If you’ve started a personal blog, in your first blog post, you can introduce yourself, share your experiences, what motivated you to create a blog, your blogging goals, etc. Go beyond the story you put on your ‘About’ page. It helps your target audience to get to know you better and connect.
If you’ve started a niche blog, you better be buckled up from day one. Think of a core topic from your niche you’re good at already. As you publish more blog articles, you can easily organize them into multiple categories to make your users navigate efficiently.
Remember, your first blog post is essential, but that’s not all. Don’t aim for perfection; it will only make you stressed. Instead, start, and thrive on being better.
Here are some ways to find inspiration to write your first blog post:
- Know your audience well so you can write a pillar blog post that resonates with them.
- Explore competition.
- SEMrush tool makes it easy to identify content ideas for your new blog.
- Signup for Quora to understand what people are looking for in your niche.
Content creation tips
With around 8 million blog posts published on the Internet, it’s hard to stand out with mediocre content. So take your time and ensure quality with proper content marketing strategy and consistency.
When I say quality blog content, here are some of its qualities:
- Leverage SEO
- Target a single purpose
- Speaks to your target group
- and brims with your personality
If you ever need help in content creation for your blog, please consider hiring me as – Blog content writer in India. My rates are affordable, and I can significantly impact your blog.
However, like most beginners, if you feel creating better content is not your piece of cake, the following is my advice before you leave.
Keep practicing writing and reading every day. Befriend English writers and bloggers throughout so you can improve your English skills. Turn on the T.V, and watch English Sitcoms with/without subtitles to improve your English vocabulary, and I feel there’s no better way than it.
You can also leverage tools like Grammarly. Grammarly has a free extension you can use to help you. And if you want to go pro, a discount for Grammarly Premium is available.
Note: You can also use an A.I. writing tool like JasperAI to help you produce 100% grammar-correct content. However, you need to input the basic content flow to yield the A.I. result.
Affiliate Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a commission if you buy through my links. And it doesn’t impact your purchase in any way. Read the full disclosure.