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What is a blog?
The word 'blog' is the accepted term shortened from the word 'web-log', describing something like an online personal diary. The subject matter of a blog can vary widely from personal views on life or random ramblings to specialist knowledge on a specific topic. Many blogs are just the modern equivalent of the personal diary that you might fill in on a daily basis, others have specific goals and can even generate significant revenue for the author.
Can anyone start a blog?
Anybody who has access to the internet can very easily start their own blog on pretty much any subject they like. There are free services provided by organisations like 'Wordpress' or 'Blogger' (Google) who can provide you with your very own free blog, a range of templates so that you can get started straight away and free hosting on their servers. Many bloggers start on these free-hosted blogs and go on to buy their own domain names and have their blogs hosted commercially.
If you start on a free-hosted service such as Blogger, you will automatically be allocated a free subdomain such as 'www.livewyre.blogspot.com' or 'www.worldofbeckham.blogspot.com', if you buy your own domain name ie: 'www.livewyre.net' you can have this domain attributed to your existing free blog, or if you have a hosting package that is compatible with Wordpress or other blogging templates, you can host your own blog on a commercial server. Some hosting packages may be able to set this up for you. Why not try GRIS internet Solutions if you are planning to blog with your own domain and would like to work with a company that will take you through the process step-by-step?
How do I get started?
Blogs are generally organised in chronological order, each entry is called a 'post'. the best bloggers post at least once a day just like you would in a diary, this encourages your readers to return every day to check the new material. Each post should be a minimum of 50 words and will often include a picture and good title to draw the reader in. Many bloggers allow readers to 'comment' on their posts, thus introducing interactivity between author and reader.
You will generally use a login username and password to access your blog online and edit it using the software appropriate to the type of blog you choose. 'Blogger' call this interface the 'dashboard' where you have options to change your template or settings, create new posts and edit old ones.
How do I earn money with a blog?
One of the best ways to earn money with a blog is to sign up for paid blogging services. These services provide opportunities for you to use your blog to create advertising posts where you blog about a specific product or service. there are several good service providers who will pay for this type of advertising, each of them has their own rules regarding what type of blog is acceptable.
As well as paid posts, you might also be able to raise some money by hosting permanent adverts in the 'sidebar' of your blog or by signing up for affiliates linked to the main topic of your blog. Read more about monetising a website here.
Having a specific topic for your blog may help to build up readership and get you ranked well in search engines. Being able to link that topic to subjects that attract paid posts can be helpful for monetising. This is a short list of the subjects that are likely to have plenty of paid posting opportunities::
It is also a good idea to blog about newsworthy items if you want to get picked up by search engines. A good percentage of searches will relate to today's news. Having a celebrity-oriented, or sports-oriented blog for example should increase your Search-Engine traffic.
Building readership traffic
Once you are up and running, you will no doubt want to get as many visitors to you blog as possible. Here are my starter tips:
By: Jay Livewyre
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Read more about 'get paid to blog' here...
In order to monetise your site you are probably going to need to sign up with a scheme like Adsense (see above), and Paypal
Paypal is a widely-used online system for exchanging money for purchases or sales.
Sign up here or click on the advert at the bottom of the page.
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