I will take the liberty to assume that you read either my 30+ non-scammy ways to make money from home or my at home jobs that pay South Africans well post. That is what helped you decide to start a lucrative blog of your own.
This blog is not my first rodeo. I used to run a profitable blog that made up to 12K per month in paid sponsorships and social media posts in less than a year.
Then the wheels came off in my personal life. If you have been around my blog for a bit longer, you will know all the intimate details. If you are new here, firstly, welcome. I am so grateful you decided to visit my blog. The short of it is. The rug got pulled out of under me when after 14 years of marriage, I became a divorced, single mom.
For obvious reasons, I took a blogging hiatus. The only reason I took an extended hiatus was that my blog was extremely personal. I became very conflicted about sharing such intimate parts of my daughter’s life with the public.
I began to wonder if I am exposing so much about my (and hers) life that could be detrimental to her. I definitely did not want her to think I would put money before her mental health. So I decided to err on the side of caution and stop.
I retained the name because I am still very much a shell shocked mummy just a mummy focused on financial stability (or lack thereof) since becoming a struggling, single mom. It’s hard out here for South Africans. Earning extra income from home is almost the norm to have a reasonable quality of life. Since one way (and my preferred method) to make money from home is blogging, I thought I would put together a series of posts on how to kick off your blogging career.
I started with zero knowledge and you can too! Don’t be intimidated! You do not need to have amazing writing skills. I write the way I talk and it works well. I will teach you all the basics to get started and share some incredible resources too.
You may also want to read: Crucial blog launch to-do list with a 20-page editable workbook.
This 5-day series will get the ball rolling for you.
Start a money-making blog for under R100 (In 5 days)
Step 1: Decide what to blog about
Choose a niche topic that reflects your own interests and that you will not get bored with. I made that mistake when I was trying to move away from talking about my own life. I started with batting which was a phase and then got stuck. Think of what people will want to share, and market your blog for you.
I am enthusiastic to share all the various options out there for South African mothers to work from home around your children. After all, that is what I want.
My personal goal is to earn R21 000pm by the end of this year. It’s a lofty goal but I know how powerful blogging can be if you do it right.
Tip: Try to map out who you are writing for (Target audience) and choose a specific topic rather than having various different topics on one blog. It’s so much easier to monetize your blog. Eg. My audience is South African struggling moms looking for ways to save or make more money.
It takes time to build up your audience and earn money, but totally worth the effort. I would also be clear on why you are blogging if it’s to make money. Then you will need to treat it differently than a hobby or someone sharing your story with the hope of going viral.
My entire first year of blogging, I dedicated 40+ hours a week on it. I was hyper-focused on learning or promoting my blog. I have always known that I wanted to be a career blogger and that I had a lot to learn. I am not advising you to do the same but if you want to spend fewer hours on blogging, its good to get it right from ground zero. I will share all I know and point you in the direction of short free or dirt cheap courses to take to save you time and money.
Also read: Top Money-making Niches for 2021
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means that may I get a commision for reccommended products at no cost to you. I am adamant that I will only write well researched content not influenced by or paid for by an advertiser. Keep in mind that I will only ever link companies and products based on quality and my personal experience.The decision will always remain yours on whether you buy anything.
Step 2: Choose a Domain Name
You’ll want to really think about this because your domain name is so important. I didn’t, and if I am honest I regret that now, but I already have an audience as Shell Shocked Mummy.
- Try to have a keyword of your topic in your name or have your domain explain exactly what the topic is. If you can have more than one. SCORE!
- Make it simple, easy to remember and avoid hyphens
- Make it short so its easy to type
You could use your own name example lavernebotha.co.za but if you do YOU are part of the brand and you will need to be comfortable with letting your readers really get to know you and being extremely visible throughout your blog.
Step 3: Decide on a host
Your hosting company is like your internet landlord. They store all your files on their servers and charge you a tiny rent.
It’s a really important decision to choose a good one if you are blogging for business. I have personally set up or designed 27 websites and I can confidently recommend VEHOST
They have fantastic customer service with a “live chat” feature during office hours and will keep regular backups of your site just in case.
Plus they are a South African business which is really important for me.
To get started, click here to go to VEHOST and then click “Register” You can choose their R25 package like I did and go up in increments. Alternatively, you can choose their most popular package that costs R49 a month.
Plus their SSL (security) Certificate is 100% FREE!
Step 4: Install a WordPress website
Installing WordPress is really simple on VEHOST. Literally one-click installation. They send you the details to the backend and you press a button to install WordPress and you are off!
VEHOST support is incredibly helpful if you get stuck.
Step 5: Choose a template aka Theme
Installing WordPress is really simple on VEHOST. Literally one-click installation. They send you the details to the backend and you press a button to install WordPress and you are off! VEHOST support is incredibly helpful if you get stuck.
As you are starting you can choose a free theme or you can pay for a theme. The difference with paid themes that they come with extra customization and support. Choosing a theme is incredibly daunting and there are hundreds of thousands to choose from.
I highly recommend you start with ThemeIsle for various reasons. They have a decent amount of free themes that you can easily customize but don’t make the mistake I made as a new blogger, going down the rabbit hole of over obsessing with design. It is far wiser to focus on learning things that will get you more traffic and writing great content. My site is built on the Astra Theme.
The Astra theme and it’s highly flexible and can be easily customized and there are lots of helpful Youtube videos on how to customize your website if you want to. If you don’t want to be bothered or are too overwhelmed to set up your theme and just want to get to writing, I charge from as little as R899 for my Blog set up service. You can find out more here.
Side Note: There is plenty of free information on Youtube and the internet but it’s overwhelming the conflicting advice you will get. I took a blogging course that was pretty expensive by a very well known and respected blogger and I realised that it was not worth it. I found a very similar beginner blogging course for R180 that I think is worth looking into.
Step 6 Log Into WordPress.
Paste your new blog’s admin URL into a new window, then enter the username and password you created.
This will unlock the back end of your brand spanking new site and bobs your uncle you are in.
How did I only pay R85 for my site?
I paid R75 for my domain name (There was a further discount if you pay by card) and R25 for my hosting package and will upgrade as I need to. If you pay with your credit card there is a further discount. When your blog is uber-successful the most you will pay is R200.
So what now? I have a few more posts in this series to get you up and running and on your way to earning money as a blogger.
But this is not about me, this is about you. Comment below and tell me what sort of blog are you thinking of starting.
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Thank you for reading.
I am not online all the time but you are welcome to email me with questions or join my mailing list. It’s the best way to keep in touch with me. I will also be sending out my monthly income statements top my subscribers and a monthly free printable to help you achieve your financial goals.
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