So you’re thinking of starting a blog eh? Are you wondering where to begin and what to do? Or what NOT to do? I’m right there with ya! These were the same questions I asked myself back in 2020 before launching my first blog. I wish I had a “starting a blog checklist” of the right things I needed to do to set myself up for success. Since blogging can be a long hard road or a super successful one, I want to cut through the bull crap to help you start off on the right path toward success!
So without further chatter, here’s the ultimate “Starting A Blog Checklist” that I would follow if I were to start a new blog all over from scratch. Here’s what to focus on versus what NOT to do. Let’s get to it!
Starting A Blog Checklist
1. Choose A Niche
As Russell Brunson says, “The riches are in the niches.”
First, it’s important to start a blog in a niche that you’re going to love putting time and effort into.
Especially one that aligns with your interests and expertise. Some of the most profitable blog niches to start up include:
- Business Marketing
- Digital Marketing
- Making Money Online
- Personal Development
- Personal Finance
Is there a topic in this list that you would love to put time and effort into? If you answered yes, then that niche may be one to consider.
But here’s something to think about…
I know a lot of gurus out there say, “Start a blog based on your passions”! While this is very true to a certain extent, you could be super passionate about a niche BUT there may be little to no money in it? If this doesn’t matter to you, then by all means pursue any niche you want.
BUT if you’re looking to build a blog that earns you a passive income, then be sure to choose a niche where there’s money to be made AND a niche you know you’ll love putting time and effort into!
So how do you know if a niche is profitable or not? Let’s cover that next.
2. Research Your Niche To MAKE Sure It’s Profitable
I know I gave you a list of some of the top money-making niches out there, but if none of those speak to you, then let’s show you how to research a niche so you know if there are any profits to be made.
Do keyword research to find out how BIG or small your niche is.
Head over to google and type in some of the most popular topics people search for in your niche.
For instance, if you’re interested in starting a food, lifestyle, or parenting blog, type it into Google’s FREE keyword research tool to see the average monthly searches this blog topic gets.
As you can see the average monthly searches are great for these topic choices ranging anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 monthly searches. I broke this down even more with another paid keyword research tool I use called Ubersuggest. And again, the average monthly search volume is good!
Then, find other popular topics people search for in your blog niche.
I’m going to show you a very easy way to do this!
Let’s take our “food blog” example. Say I want to blog about different “keto recipes”. Type this into Google’s search box, and then you will quickly notice OTHER popular topics people search for when they type in “keto recipes” like keto recipes with ground beef or keto recipes with chicken.
Now let’s go back to our free keyword research tool and type in these blog topic ideas to see the monthly search volume. Woah, as you can see once again, the monthly search volume ranges from 1,000 to 10,000 searches which is great!
A good rule of thumb to follow is to find topics whose volumes exceed at least 1,000 monthly searches to ensure your niche has adequate traffic.
Check out the competition.
Again, this is super easy to do. Head over to Google search to type in your blog niche topics and see the websites that pop up. Do not include the websites that are “paid ads” on the first page of Google.
For our continued example of “keto recipes”, you’ll see competitors like www.delish.com and www.wholesomeyum.com. If you keep scrolling down, you’ll see all the competitors in this arena. Don’t be discouraged if there is BIG competition! This lets you know it’s a HOT topic people are interested in!
Dive into social media channels and forums to see if people are researching or discussing your niche topics.
This is another great way to see what people are talking about. More importantly, if people are talking about your niche topics like our “keto recipes” example.
Popular social media channels and forums to checkout include:
- Facebook groups
- Instagram influencers
Research to see if companies offer affiliate products in your niche.
Affiliate links are a GREAT way to earn money from your blog! So what affiliate products are out there for your niche?
The best way to find out is by doing a Google search. Simply type in the search field ‘’affiliate marketing program’’ + ‘’your niche’’, or search for ‘’affiliate marketing program’’ + ‘’a specific product you want to find’’ and this will help you find programs or products within your niche.
3. Choose A Web Host Company For Your Blogging Platform
There are A LOT of great web hosting companies to choose from these days. The best part, most blogging platforms are built right into the web host you sign up to use. So when you decide on a web host, you should be able to easily set up your blog right then and there. Some of the top web host providers for blogging include:
Bluehost lets you set up small to medium blogging sites and offers WordPress hosting. You get a variety of features, including a custom domain name, which can make your blog more professional and easier to find. Bluehost also provides templates and tools to help you design and customize your blog AND you get 24/7 customer support. Even if you’re not familiar with web design or programming, Bluehost makes it easy for you to get going. It’s one of the most affordable options out there to start a blog.
Final Verdict: It’s a budget-friendly choice for beginner bloggers who would like more control over the look and feel of their blog.
Dreamhost offers affordable hosting with great features, including unlimited storage, bandwidth, and email accounts. You also receive a free domain name, customer support, and a simple one-click WordPress installer making it super easy to set up your blog.
Final Verdict: A reliable, simple blogging platform that allows you to quickly set up a WordPress blog.
HostGator is a low-cost web host that allows you to create a free blog in just a few minutes without any prior experience or technical knowledge. There’s no need to download or install any software – everything is done online. Once you’ve created your blog, you can customize it with your own domain name, templates, and plugins.
Final Verdict: A low-cost web host with an easy-to-use blogging platform that’s packed with a ton of features.
SiteGround is one of the most popular WordPress-recommended hosts that is best known for site speed and security solutions. Server security is one of their top priorities where they offer things like the latest PHP 7 version, daily backups, enhanced security, and free SSL. Plus, they offer high-quality customer support 24/7.
Final Verdict: If you’re planning on growing your website or blog for the long hull, Siteground may be the one for you. With their enhanced security and site speed features for increased traffic, you can stick with one hosting provider without having to switch.
Known for its sleek, modern designs and easy-to-use interface, Squarespace is a website builder and blogging platform that allows you to easily create and manage your site. Squarespace offers a variety of features that make it unique among other platforms, including its drag-and-drop interface, customizable templates, and easy-to-use marketing tools. Plus, you have excellent customer support and helpful community forums for your burning questions.
Final Verdict: Squarespace offers special features, like social media integration and e-commerce options, that make it a powerful and versatile tool for bloggers.
Web.com is a website builder and blogging platform that makes it easy to create a professional-looking website or blog. You don’t need any coding skills or experience – just choose a template, customize it with your own content, and you’re ready to go! Web.com also offers a range of features to help you grow your online presence, including web hosting, domain names, and email accounts. So if e-commerce speaks to you, the web.com platform allows you to create an online store, sell products and services online, and accept payments.
Final Verdict: A versatile platform that allows you to start a blog, build a business website, or create an online store.
Wix is an easy-to-use platform with a lot of built-in features. It’s a popular blogging platform that allows users to create and customize their own blogs. One of the best things about Wix is that you can try it out for free. It’s very user-friendly, even for those who are not familiar with web design.
Final Verdict: The platform provides everything you need to create a professional-looking blog for personal or business use, including templates, tools for customization, and hosting.
Here are some things to consider when you’re deciding which web host to use for your blog.
Ease of use.
Some blogging platforms are easier to use than others. If you’re not very tech-savvy, you’ll want to choose a platform that’s easy to navigate and figure out.
Depending on how important aesthetics are to you, you’ll want to choose a platform that offers a variety of design options.
Some blogging platforms are free, while others require a monthly or yearly subscription. Be sure to factor in the cost of the platform when making your decision.
Ultimately, the best blogging platform for you is the one that meets your needs and preferences. So take some time to explore your options and find the platform that’s right for you!
Personally, I use SiteGround as my hosting provider and WordPress.org as my blogging platform for these reasons.
SiteGround improved my website’s speed tenfold.
Siteground’s large servers can handle big traffic to a website. There are some web hosts like Bluehost that can only handle so much traffic to a site before you have to switch to another hosting provider.
SiteGround’s security measures are stellar too. Even though it isn’t the cheapest, I know the more my website grows, SiteGround can handle it.
WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system (CMS).
It’s the mothership of all blogging platforms powering almost HALF of all blogs in the world! In my opinion, there’s a reason WordPress is so big…because it’s one of the best blogging platforms you can use. Big dogs like Vogue, Forbes, and The New York Times all use WordPress.
WordPress.org is free to use and gives you A LOT of control over the look and feel of your blog.
It’s user-friendly and has a TON of features that make it easy to create your beautiful one-of-a-kind website. It’s a great platform for building and customizing the website of your dreams.
If you’re curious as to the difference between WordPress.org versus WordPress.com I wrote a separate article about that here.
4. Choose A Domain Name.
Once you’ve chosen your web host and blogging platform to use, I suggest registering a domain name for your blog. A lot of times you can receive a free domain name the first year depending on which hosting provider you use OR get it around a few bucks for the first year.
I pay around $20/year for my domain name www.twinmomblognerd.com. That’s with zero discounts or special pricing which isn’t too shabby.
Your domain name is your brand, your virtual piece of real estate online, so keep it memorable and short if possible.
Here are five tips to keep in mind when choosing your domain name:
- Keep your domain short
- Keep it easy to say and spell
- Stick with .com (this is the most authoritative way to know your blog website is found online)
- Use keywords in your domain name (these words highlight your business, products, services, etc. It may even be your own name!)
- Avoid hyphens and numbers
Now, onto the FUN part.
5. Write SEO-Friendly Blog Posts
Now that you have your web host AND domain name, it’s GO time! If you haven’t decided on a web host for your blogging platform, I suggest doing that now. Once you do, then you’re ready to move on to writing your FIRST SEO-friendly blog post. 🙂
I’m going to share a blogging secret with you…
The special recipe to blogging is content, content, and MORE content! The more high-quality content you publish whether that be through writing or videos, the more traffic comes your way (over time)!
Keep in mind traffic does not come overnight but will happen if you stick with it. A good rule of thumb to follow is to try to publish around 2 to 4 blog posts per week after you launch your blog and go live.
First, SEO, or search engine optimization, is a FREE way to get traffic to your website and make it more visible to search engines like King “Google”.
So why write SEO-friendly blog posts?
- To help you gain more traffic to your blog
- To help you build your brand
- To help you establish yourself as an expert
By optimizing your site and blog posts the right way, you can attract more visitors who are looking for your products, services, or a solution to their problem.
SEO-friendly blog posts can help to improve your site’s ranking in search results, making it more likely for people to find your site when they’re searching for information on the web.
By providing valuable information to your readers, you can establish yourself as a leader in your field to attract more visitors to your blog!
With that said, here’s a helpful “SEO-Friendly Checklist” to guide you when you write a blog post.
Psst, this is the same checklist I follow when I write my own blog posts.
1. Use keywords throughout your post.
Keyword research, keyword research, keyword research…is what it boils down to.
You want to go after low-competition, high-volume keywords in your post.
For example purposes, I researched the keyword phrase ‘low competition keywords’ via Google’s free keyword research tool. As you can see, this keyphrase has ‘average monthly searches of 100 to 1,000 visits‘, and the ‘competition is low’. This would be a GREAT keyword phrase I would consider writing a post about.
► To learn how to do keyword research on Google, click here.
Keyword research is essential for writing SEO-optimized blog posts. You need to find out what people are searching for in relation to your topic, and then use those keywords throughout your post.
This allows your content to have a better chance of being seen and ranked.
2. Use keyword-rich title tags and meta descriptions.
These are two very important elements of SEO to help search engines know what your content is all about.
Make sure to include relevant keywords in both your title tag (the title of your post) and meta description (your web page’s meta tag). See the example image below.
Be sure to choose a focus keyword or phrase for each post you write about and include it in the title and throughout the body of the post.
3. Structure your posts so they are easy to read by using H1, H2, and H3 headings.
Breaking your content up into smaller paragraphs and sections makes it easier to read. Use subheadings, bullet points, and lists to do this.
Headings range from H1 to H6. The smaller the number, the more important it is for SEO. H1 and H2 headings carry the most weight. The most commonly used headings are H1 to H3. Let’s break these numbers down even further.
H1 Heading – Main Title.
This is the main title of your post and will be displayed at the very top. There can be only one H1 heading.
H2 Heading – Main Headings.
These are the main headings throughout your post after your H1 title. Use H2 headings to section off chunks of your content.
H3 Heading – Subheadings.
These headings further break up your content. Then H4 to H6 are additional subheadings to break down your content even more.
Structuring your posts makes it easy for the eyes to read. Plus, it helps search engines better understand the topic of your post while making it simple to scan.
4. Include images and videos.
Have you found yourself more interested in reading a blog article when you saw images or videos?
That’s exactly what visual content does to your posts; it breaks up the text and makes it more engaging.
Additionally, to optimize your images and videos for SEO include keywords in the file names and descriptions. For instance, in the image, below I titled the keyword phrase “how-to-optimize-an-image-for-seo” since we are talking about optimizing images and videos for SEO.
In the picture below I uploaded under my WordPress dashboard “Media Files”. This is where I was able to add a file name; title, alt text, and description. Any blogging platform you use will allow you to add this information when you upload images and videos.
Here are some free platforms you can share your blog posts on. You can use all, a few, or none of these platforms to share your articles. Decide what the best marketing strategy is for you!
Blogger is a free WordPress alternative blogging platform that allows you to set up and customize your own blog. It provides all the tools you need to get started, including templates, SSL encryption, and more. You can also use Blogger to connect with other bloggers and build a community around your blog.
Final Verdict: A popular easy-to-use blogging software that’s free.
Instagram is a photo-sharing app that allows you to share photos and videos with your followers. You can also add hashtags to your posts, which makes it easy for people to find and follow you. Best of all, it’s FREE.
It’s a great way to connect with other bloggers and build an audience for your blog. You can use Instagram to share your blog posts, give sneak peeks of upcoming content, and even connect with major brands and influencers.
Final Verdict: A great platform to build your brand and connect with influential people or businesses in your niche.
Most people think of LinkedIn as a place to find a job or promote their business. But did you know that you can also use LinkedIn to blog? That’s right – LinkedIn has a built-in blogging platform that allows you to share your expert insights with the LinkedIn community. And best of all, your blog posts can be seen by people who aren’t even connected to you on LinkedIn!
Final Verdict: LinkedIn is a great way to share your thoughts and ideas with your business connections, and it can also help to boost your visibility and build your brand.
Medium is a blogging platform that’s gained a lot of popularity in recent years. It’s simple to use and has a clean, minimalist design. But what makes Medium unique is its focus on stories and storytelling. It’s free to join but you can always upgrade to a paid membership of $5/month for access to all articles.
Final Verdict: A great platform for bloggers who want to share their own stories with the world.
I like to think of Pinterest as a visual search engine. When you’re looking for ideas or inspiration, all you have to do is type in a keyword and Pinterest will show you a TON of options. It’s one of the most popular social media platforms with over 400 million active users! And that’s why Pinterest is such a great platform for promoting your blog posts. If you have a beautiful, eye-catching image to go along with your post, Pinterest users are more likely to see it and click through to your site.
Final Verdict: A great platform to drive traffic to your site while connecting with other bloggers and influencers in your niche.
Originally created in 2007, Tumblr is a microblogging platform that allows users to share short-form content such as text, videos, and images. What sets Tumblr apart from other blogging platforms is its focus on visual content and its use of “reblogs” (similar to “shares” on other social media sites). When a user reblogs a post, they can add their own commentary before sharing it with their followers. This feature encourages users to engage with the content in a more personal way, making Tumblr a unique and powerful platform for creative expression. While it’s not as widely used as platforms like WordPress or Blogger, Tumblr still boasts a loyal following of passionate users who appreciate its simplicity and flexibility.
Final Verdict: If some of your target audiences are millennials and Gen-Zers, this platform would be a good one to join.
To Wrap It Up
By following this “Starting A Blog Checklist”, you’re one step ahead of the game in terms of having a successful blog. If you focus on this checklist by producing quality content, being consistent, and promoting your blog then success is sure to follow.
Until the next post, I’m wishing you all the best in your blogging endeavors, and remember to have FUN with it!
Thank you for being here today!
Do you have anything to add or share for “Starting A Blog Checklist” that I did not cover in this post? I’d love to hear from you! Let me know in the comments below. 🙂
Did you enjoy this read? If so, you’d make my day by sharing it!
About The Author
Lindsey is a mom of two little miracles, MoMo twin girls, Lily Mae and Lua, plus one amazing older bro, Cody.
“Consider me a ‘blog super nerd’ at heart. I love helping busy parents learn how to blog because it has personally been life-changing for me and my family. Plus, sharing my experience to help others on their twinhood journey is so rewarding!”
She is the founder of Twin Mom Blog Nerd, Content Creator/Co-Founder of the blog Intensive Therapy for Kids, and Co-Founder of The LENN Foundation 501(c)(3) charity that helps children with cerebral palsy (like her sweet nephew, Lenny) receive grants for intensive therapies to thrive. ♥
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