Today, I will show you how to get paid for blogging on WordPress. You probably have heard a lot about WordPress and the idea of blogging to make “passive income”. Blogging has been a past time of mine, not to make money but to share my thoughts and ideas with an outlet and maybe helping others in the same time.
WordPress is the go-to for most because its an open platform that is easy to use, and developers are actively creating plugins (think of these like apps) to make WordPress be able to function in a myriad of ways.
In this how-to guide, I have included, my personal favorite, Namecheap, as my webhost provider. I’ve used GoDaddy in the past, and can’t speak to others because I’ve used this one for years. I have picked the most affordable hosting services so you’re not breaking the bank to get started, especially while you’re learning.
Disclosure: Links provided in this article are for services I use and recommend. I am an affiliate for Namecheap and Canva and will receive a small commission if you sign up through my referral link. This is at no additional cost to you, and you’ll actually get great pricing through my link.
How to Get Paid for Blogging in 5 Steps
Choose a name and make a logo
Of course, the “hardest” part for some is the first step in any activity. You’ll need to find a name, and a name that’s actually available. You probably have tons of ideas and don’t know what to pick. What I would recommend doing is brainstorming or as I call it, a brain dump. Here you will just write out everything you can think of in 2 lists.
A list for ideas of what you want to blog about, something you can write about endlessly. And the second list, ideas of what you would call a blog with that name.
Now of course, you want to make it relevant for the long term. Now, this isn’t your email from back in the 90s. And you don’t want a blog that’s called “hotstuffforyou79” because unless you’re talking about 79 hot pepper variations, it’s likely not relevant.
You want to think of something professional, easier to remember, and neutral to your wide audience. While your brainstorming, don’t paint yourself into a corner. Don’t call it “soccerismypassion” because you’ll be stuck talking only about soccer, even if your interests are morphing into lacrosse, cricket or whatever other sport suits you. If you can, keep it to a small phrase, 3-4 words.
Now that you’ve come up with the perfect idea, come up with 3 more. And head over to a site like namechk to see if any are even available. I’m not here to be discouraging, but finding a website name can sometimes be difficult don’t be discouraged, just keep looking. This resource is FREE. Do not purchase anything on this site.
Once you’ve found your new name, it’s time for a logo. Head on over to Canva, and start designing a logo. You’ll need to set up an account for free to save your work. Now we have two things that have provided instant gratification, we’re named and a pretty nice logo to boot!
Set up hosting with Namecheap
A web host is a place for your website to live. If you were to imagine it another way, it’s the land your house is built upon. Because we’re a small blogger, we will pay a webhost rent, and they’ll let us build upon the land in the form of a website. You own the website, it is your audience, and no one can kick you out of the house.
Namecheap has the same accolades as bigger host providers. They offer 24/7 chat support, competitive pricing, and automatic WordPress installation at the click of a button. The other thing I love about Namecheap is that you can get started for under $100. Other sites recommend other providers which will have you paying $200-300 just to start. Let’s save some money, shall we?
Here’s the easy steps:
- Go to namecheap and type in your domain name. Add the .com to your cart. Notice this screenshot has .domains for $27. Don’t buy this one! You want the .com which is below for only $6.98 at the time of this screenshot.
2. After you add this to cart, go to the top where it says WordPress. There are 3 choices you can pick from. Choose bill yearly, bypassing the free trial. Make sure you pick the Turbo or better plan. I recommend the Turbo because it has a free SSL which is the security certificate that let’s people know your site is safe. It’s a quick click install which is way less of a headache than the cheapest plan where you have to do it manually.
If you’re never, ever, ever, EVER going to sell anything of any sort on your side, you could buy the Starter and then upgrade. But friends, go Turbo.
At this point it should ask to create a login. Go ahead and fill this out and make sure your cart has the two items. It will also have a free privacy item in your cart to mask your contact information when your site is built. Keep this in the cart.
Checkout as normal, just like you’re buying new shoes on Amazon.
3. Once it is complete a receipt will generate and you can manage your domain. Choose this link. On the right hand side is the option for Apps. A green octopus appears, here you’ll choose to click it.
Now, choose new website at the top right. And complete the box about what your site is about.
The next screen asks you to pick a domain. Pick the “your domain on namecheap” and it will populate a dropdown of the site you just purchased.
Click continue, choose any theme on this page, and skip the plugins. We’ll talk about those in a following step. Finalize the setup and then let it works its magic. This process takes 30 seconds to up to 10 minutes. You will then be emailed a WordPress credentials email. Keep this safe!
Good news, you’ve made it this far! Pat yourself on the back!
Ok, time’s up, back to work. I usually just click on WPAdmin on this next page and it takes me to the site. If you prefer go to your email, and login through the link there. You can always type in yoursitename.com/admin and it’ll bring you to the same page.
Your dashboard will look like this…
Go to the bottom left where that red 2 is and choose Plugins, Add New.
I recommend the next few plugins.
- Rank Math for SEO
- Short Pixel for quicker picture uploads
- WP Forms for contact forms
- Site Kit for Google Analytics
From here you can add as necessary. This step does take time to set up new accounts and get everything going. I wont put screenshots of this step. Just follow the screens!
Pick a Theme
Now that you have the more complicated part set up, you can do the pretty stuff like picking a theme. Remember when MySpace was a thing? You could pick a “skin” and make your MySpace to your taste? Same thing with themes and WordPress. Themes are good whether paid or free. I recommend starting with a free theme, but if you just rather, buy a theme for $50 and call it good. I don’t have any I specifically recommend. When I’m starting a new blog, I’ll google “top 10 themes for veterinary site” or whatever site I’m doing to see what comes up. There will be both free and premium (paid) themes.
The cool thing is you can also shop right on your Dashboard! Pick Themes, and choose add new. You can now filter out themes already in the WordPress Repository and add right inside the dashboard.
Driving Traffic and Making Money
Now you’ve done every step until now, so it’s time to get paid, am I right?! There’s a few ways to make money on WordPress so we will go over the quick and easy ways first. My top choices for a beginner are:
- Writing Content is the foundation of your blog. It’s the gateway to everything. The more you write, the more traffic will come. The more traffic, the more the other two below will benefit you and make your blog money. When you think of writing content, make a schedule, keep a notebook and be sure to post a blog at least once a week. If you want, just build content and drip it out on a schedule so it doesn’t bog you down. I know I get burnt out writing, so I will write a few articles and just schedule them so I can take a break and breathe. Once you write traffic you’ll want to push your posts on likeminded groups, on Pinterest, Reddit, and through Search Engine Optimization.
- Advertising the majority of sites these days have ads, right? Well your blog will likely be no different. You will get paid every time your visitor clicks on an ad. It’s pretty simple, more traffic = more clicks, and more clicks = more money. There are a ton of advertisers out there. While you’re getting started you might check out Google AdSense, Media.net or Ezoic. As you progress, you’d want to check out MediaVine or Adthrive that have minimum sessions or page views.
- Affiliate Marketing affiliate marketing is an awesome way to make big bucks depending on how you do it. You simply recommend a product or service, and earn a percentage of the sale as commission. Checkout sites like ShareASale, CJ Afilliates, or Amazon Affiliates to get started. The important thing here isn’t to recommend everything under the sun. No, instead you want to vet services and products first, because this is your reputation on the line. Hence me recommending Shareasale first, then CJ and Amazon. I use all three now, and trust them.