9 Things to Do Before Starting a Blog (+ Helpful Advice to Get YOU Started)

by | Updated on November 12th, 2022

Do you want to start a blog but aren’t sure what is required?

Blogging is one of the most popular ways to share your thoughts and ideas with the world.

But, it’s also been shown to have many different and proven ways to make money online, even if you’re new to the blogging world.

Blogging can be a great way to create a passive income, or even replace your job altogether.

9 Things You Need to Do Before Starting a Blog (Plus Helpful Advice to Get Started)

This is Part 3 of 5 for the ‘Start a Blog for Beginners’ Series:
  1. Why Start a Blog? 12 Damn Good Reasons to Start a Blog (7 Why You Shouldn’t)
  2. 17 Common Blogging Myths About Starting a Blog (Killing Your Chances for Success)
  3. 9 Things You Need to Do Before Starting a Blog (+ Helpful Advice to Get YOU Started)
  4. How to Start a Blog and Make Money in 2022 (Easy-to-Follow Steps for Beginners!)
  5. 15 Essential Things to Do After Starting a Blog (+ Helpful Step-by-Step Instructions)

If you’re thinking about starting a blog in 2022, there are a few things you’ll need to decide first.

In this blog post, we’ll be discussing 9 important factors that will help you determine whether or not blogging is right for you.

So, if you’re curious about what it takes to be a successful blogger, keep reading!

Have you been seeing the Internet light up with ideas for starting a blog?

Do you want to be in control of your own destiny and choose when and how you work?

Would you like to make money while you sleep, creating this income from the comfort of your own home?

Starting a blog and putting in the work required to make it a success can become a reality.

Before you begin, here are 9 things you’ll need to decide ahead of time, to ensure that your blog has the best possible start.

1. You Must Decide What You’d Like to Blog About

The first thing you need to do is choose a niche topic for your blog.

This can be anything that you’re passionate about or have knowledge of.

If you’re wanting to make money from your blog, you’ll have to choose a topic known for making money on the Internet.

Some popular and profitable blogging topics could include personal finance, health and fitness, lifestyle, travel, and fashion, just to name a few.

Whatever you decide to blog about, make sure it’s something you’re interested in, so you can keep writing about it for the long haul.

The tough part about blogging is that there are so many amazing things to write about with your blog.

A Few Things to Think About – You Can:

Write about your passions – as long as it can be a profitable topic, there’s nothing wrong with it. Plus, it’s easy to write when you are passionate about a subject.

What can you see yourself writing about for the next 5 to 10 years?

Just remember that passion doesn’t always equal money. Just because you’re passionate about writing a specific topic doesn’t mean that it’s going to turn into a success and make you money.

The best thing to do for this is to research to see if others are writing within the same niche as you. If there are bloggers making money for the niche you’ve chosen, that is a good sign.

Don’t try and reinvent the wheel, because someone has already thought of it.

Write what you’re knowledgeable about – same thing here, if you are wanting to make money from your blog, be sure it’s a topic that has proven to make money.

  • What are you an expert in – do you have a degree?
  • Do you have fashion sense?
  • Can you keep a home organized?
  • What do your friends say you are amazing at?

Become a problem solver – successful blogs solve problems. The more information you provide to your audience that solves their problems, the more likely they are to turn to you for additional information.

Also, the easier it will be to blog and make money.

Some of the biggest issues people face today are:

  • How to stay healthy
  • How to lose weight or get fit
  • How to make money
  • How to budget or save money, etc.

If you can come up with solutions to these problems, you will have a successful blog and make money.

If you know what you want to write about BEFORE you start blogging, it will be a lot simpler to produce material and grow your blog… You’ll also begin making money faster.

Read More >>> How to Find Your Niche – Crucial First Step to Make Money Online

2. Research Blogs Around Your Topic/Niche

Once you have an idea of what you want to write about, it’s time to research blogs within your niche.

This can be done by simply typing into the Google search bar, “[Your Topic] Blogs” and taking a look at the top 10 or so results.

As you’re looking through blogs in your niche, take notes of what you like and don’t like about them.

  • Do they have a lot of content?
  • Do they have images or videos?
  • Is their blog layout easy to navigate?
  • Do they get a lot of comments?
  • Look at their blog post layout – look at their images, bullet points, if they include helpful graphics, etc
  • Do they have social media buttons to share their content?
  • Do they have ads? If so, where are they placed?
  • All of these factors will come into play when you start designing your own blog.

You’ll want to make sure that you go the extra mile to make sure your blog content is better than your competitors.

If you can create a blog that’s nicer looking, easier to navigate, and has content that provides more value, you will be successful.

The structure of a blog post is considerably more complicated than, say, a newspaper piece or a book. As a result, you’ll need to learn how to write blog posts and headlines that hook your readers.

In addition, you’ll want to investigate what topics are already covered in your selected niche, and if you have a novel take on the material.

If you want to stand out from the crowd, be a little bit different and unique.

It’s much more likely that you’ll succeed if you’re willing to do something different than if you just try what everyone else is doing.

Keep in mind that doing what others are doing may not be the best approach. Some bloggers have been doing it for years, and they already have a big head start on you.

If you do some research first, you should be able to discover what you feel is missing, what you think you can contribute to the discussion… and then use your blog to fill that gap!

How many blogs should you look into? If you’re new to the field, I recommend researching 10 (or even 20 if you have the time).

A word of caution. Don’t get discouraged while researching. Keep in mind that a good majority of these people have been blogging for years, and their first blog probably wasn’t very nice-looking or successful.

There is no limit to the amount of success you can achieve with your blog, but it’s going to take some time.

3. Define Who Your Target Audience Will Be

The key to starting a blog and having success with it is to produce helpful content that addresses and solves an issue for your readers.

Define & Identify Your Target Audience

To do so, you must first identify your target audience, then you’ll want to create content to help your audience.

You’ll want to make a list of everything you know about your target audience and the niche in which you wish to write blog content.

Because it’s difficult to summarize the method used to identify your target audience in a few short paragraphs, the best thing you can do would be to visit my in-depth article, “How to Find Your Ideal Customer Avatar in 3 EASY Steps [Your Target Audience]”

Once you’ve read my article:

  • You’ll be able to converse with your audience on their level, utilizing the language they use, and so on
  • You’ll be able to produce content quickly since you’ll know exactly what your target audience wants
  • You’ll be able to create specific lead magnets designed to gather email addresses from readers for your email list
  • You’ll be able to develop distinct products that will entice your readers to join your blogosphere
  • You’ll be able to develop a rapport with your ideal reader (people only buy from those they know, like, and trust)

Keep a list of everything you’ve learned from the Target Audience article; it will come in handy when you decide to start a blog.

This way, you can ensure that the blog posts you create are helpful and useful to the people you are targeting.

4. Create a List of Blog Post Ideas for Your Blog

This is crucial. What does this mean? Coming up with blog post ideas will tell you if you have enough ideas for a blog on the topic you have in mind.

What will you write about? Will your topic be interesting enough for you to write about?

If you’ve started writing and 20 minutes have passed and you’ve only come up with a few content ideas, maybe it’s time to consider another subject altogether.

If after 20 minutes you find that your fingers are beginning to cramp from writing so much, most likely you’ve chosen the right topic and it’s time to run with it.

Grab a sheet of paper and make a list of your categories at the top of the page, from the previous section.

Start brainstorming for blog post ideas, then write your ideas below each category.

Want some help? Here’s a great author, Sally Miller. She says:

“Get a piece of paper out and set a timer for ten minutes. Write down anything that comes to mind, related to each category, and your niche in general.

Don’t worry about evaluating the ideas right now, just write them down. Your goal is to come up with as many ideas as possible for each category. Once your time is up, read all of your ideas out loud.

Look for patterns. Are there any ideas that could turn into a series? Which 4 or 5 ideas from each category sound the most interesting to you? Circle those.

On another piece of paper, write down the ideas you circled. You should now have your first 20 or more post ideas.”

Additional Help >> How to Come up With ENDLESS Blog Post Ideas (11+ Genius Ways).

Don’t worry about any perfection, the whole point is to come up with ideas to write for the topic that you chose.

If you shoot for having roughly 10 blog ideas under each of the 5 categories, you’ve just created a year’s worth of blog posts.

5. Figure Out How Your Blog is Going to Make Money

It’s no good to have a fantastic concept for a blog, only to find out a few months down the line after you’ve put countless hours, and substantial amounts of money into it, that there is no passive income to be made from it.

Figure Out How Your Blog is Going to Make Money

Before starting a blog, it would be good to know if your chosen topic idea can make money from your blog.

Broadly speaking there are 5 ways to monetize your blog to bring in a passive income:

  • Affiliate Marketing – promoting affiliate products to earn an affiliate income, commission
  • Creating and Promoting Digital Products – such as ebooks, courses, webinars, membership programs and more
  • Selling Your Services – Freelance writing, web design, graphics design, and coaching are just a few of the services to offer
  • Selling Physical Products – you can choose to drop-ship, sell/create your own physical products, or start a business on Amazon, there are the pros and cons of each alternative.
  • Show Ads on your blog (least lucrative)

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is the process of promoting other people’s products on your blog, and in return, you earn a commission from every sale that you make.

The commission structure will differ for each company that you affiliate with, but it is not uncommon to see commissions as high as 75%.

To get started with affiliate marketing, you need to sign up with an affiliate program.

For additional information: What is Affiliate Marketing & How to Get Started

Creating and Promoting Digital Products

This is a fantastic way to monetize your blog as it involves very little cost to get started, and once your product is created, the profit margins are extremely high.

The most popular digital products include eBooks, courses, webinars, printables, membership programs, and more.

Selling Your Services

If you have a service to offer, this can be an excellent way to monetize your blog.

There are endless possibilities when it comes to the services that you could offer, but some of the most popular include freelance writing, web design, graphics design and coaching.

To get started, simply create a page on your blog that outlines the services that you offer, and include a contact form or link to your email address.

Selling Physical Products

Another great way to monetize your blog is by selling physical products.

There are a few different ways that you can go about this, but the most popular are:

  • Drop-Shipping – This is where you sell products on your blog that are fulfilled by a third-party supplier. When an order comes in, the supplier ships the product directly to your customer on your behalf
  • Create and Sell Your Own Products – This is where you create and sell physical products that you have made yourself, write about them and sell them on your blog
  • Starting a Business on Amazon – You can start an Amazon business by selling products on their platform

Showing Ads on Your Blog

The least lucrative way to monetize your blog is by showing ads on your site.

There are a few different ad networks that you can sign up with, but the most popular are Google Adsense and Mediavine.

The amount of money that you will make from ads will depend on several factors, including the traffic to your site and the niche that you are in.

There are many more ways to make money online with your blog.

For MORE money-making ideas: How to Make Money Online for Beginners in 2022 – 27 Proven Ways for Bloggers

6. Think About the Structure of Your Blog

Now that you’ve done some research, it’s time to start thinking about the structure of your blog.

This includes the design, layout, and navigation.

You want to make sure that your blog is easy to navigate and that users can find what they’re looking for easily.

If your blog is too complicated or difficult to navigate, users will likely get frustrated and leave.

Here are some things to consider when thinking about the structure of your blog:

Design: Your blog’s design should be clean, simple, and professional. You want readers to focus on your content, not be distracted by a cluttered or complicated design.

Layout: Your blog’s layout should be easy to understand and use. Readers should be able to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.

Navigation: Your blog’s navigation should be simple and straightforward. Users should be able to find their way around your blog without any trouble.

Order and structure are important to readers (and search engines). You don’t need a full-fledged content strategy yet, but do start considering how you’ll break down your major topic into categories.

Let’s say you’ve decided to launch a blog for runners.

Your categories could include things like:

  • How to get started running
  • Running shoes
  • Runners apparel
  • Training advice
  • Nutritional advice

Categories make your blog more user-friendly and help to direct visitors to the most important section of content.

Having categories will also aid in SEO (search engine optimization) by making your website easier to locate.

Once you start a blog, you should write a few articles for each category.

This can help your blog appear more balanced and increase your SEO.

7. Choosing a Domain Name (your blog’s name)

The next stage in your blogging adventure is to pick a domain name. It’s also a crucial step because it determines the identity of your blog.

Choosing a Domain Name (your blog's name)

With so many blogs out there, it’s important to choose a name that reflects your blog’s niche.

Choosing the ideal blog name might be a difficult task. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time with it in the near future.

Your blog will also become a brand for you as it gains more traffic and grows. Your readers will begin to identify with it and relate to it.

As a result, pick a blog name that your target audience can connect with.

Is there a way to sum up what your business is all about in one word? Probably not, but you can put a couple of words together.

If you’re starting a blog with the goal of providing services, it might be an excellent idea to use your own name as the brand for your site.

Finding you on the Internet will be simple for those looking to learn more once you’ve established a reputation for the services you provide.

Many bloggers will choose to use their personal name for their blog because it allows them the opportunity to pivot in the future.

A “pivot” is known in the blogging world as, allowing yourself to switch topics without also having to change the name of your blog.

Example: If you chose your topic to be about paintball and chose the domain name, ElitePaintball.com, your site is pretty much locked into the subject of paintball.

What happens if you discover that the paintball industry is difficult to make money with? It would be tough to switch to the topic of sports fishing or rock climbing gear.

If you have difficulty choosing which subjects/topics to write about on your blog, then choosing your own name for your domain most likely is the best option for you.

Use my Blog Name Formula which will help you come up with a catchy name.

I put my formula to a test and within 10 minutes came up with 5 catchy blog names… and all the names were available at the time of writing… it works!

Some Things to Ask Yourself Before Making Your Final Decision

  • Is it catchy?
  • Is it unique?
  • Is it brand-able?
  • Is it user-friendly?
  • Is it easy to remember?
  • Can it be considered, Offensive?
  • Does it represent what your blog is about?
  • Is it easy to pronounce, remember and spell?
  • Does it violate any copyrights or trademarks?

Next Step: Run a Trademark Search

One of the things you need to do before starting a blog is to do a trademark search for the name that you’re selecting for your blog.

Because you can infringe upon someone else’s name by using it without their permission under the trademark law.

So, in other words, whatever name you choose for your blog, make sure there isn’t another firm in your sector using the same name.

If you infringe on someone else’s trademark and are found guilty, you can face hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalties.

What’s more, you will have to go through the hassle of changing your entire blog name.

If you need help conducting a trademark search, hire a lawyer or visit the USPTO website.

Learn More >>> How to Choose a Blog Name You’ll Love (Examples & Domain Name Formula Included)

8. Decide on Your Blog Hosting

If you’re unfamiliar with the term “Web Hosting,” it’s a place to store your website’s data. A Web hosting company is a business that leases server memory space.

The basic plan covers everything you need to start your blog. You’ll pay a small fee every month to keep your blog online.

I personally use SiteGround Hosting because:

  • SiteGround is the perfect platform for WordPress-based websites that require speed, security, and optimization.
  • Your site will run faster than other hosts (which is crucial to Google)
  • They offer 24/7 support by phone, chat or ticketing.

For new bloggers starting out, I recommend using SiteGround as your blog host.

They always have speedy customer service and virtually never have any downtime.

On top of that, you get great website security & caching tools along with fast site speed, all for a cost as low as $2.99 per month.

9. Check Availability of Blog Name for Social Media Accounts

Before you purchase that perfect blog name, you’ll want to check which social media platforms will allow the name you’ve come up with.

Check the Availability of Your Blog Name with the Social Media Platforms

One simple method is to use an online name-checking tool that will run your chosen blog name against the most popular social media platforms and the like, and let you know if the name is available.

If you discover that your chosen domain name is available for platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, etc., go and reserve the platform with your domain name.

For now, you don’t have to do anything with your new social media accounts. On social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter, you can set them to private until you’re ready, but trust me–you’ll be happy you got them before anyone else did.

Start Your Blog?

Congratulations, if you’ve made it this far!

You now know the 9 essential things you need to do before launching a blog.

If you’re ready to start your own blog, go over to my article, ‘How To Start a Blog and Make Money in 2022 (Easy-to-Follow Steps for Beginners)’.

This article will help you through all of the technical stuff, from getting your domain name ready for the Internet, walking through getting your blog online with web hosting, choosing a theme for your WordPress blog, installing essential WordPress plugins, and more.

Starting a blog is not that difficult to get up and running. In fact, you can be up and running on the Internet in roughly 30 minutes or less. And, all for a cost as little as $2.99 per month.

Click here to get started and have everything up and running in under an hour.

This article, on how to start your own blog will also cover steps to grow your blog traffic, along with how to start making money from your blog.

Conclusion: 9 Things to Do Before Launching Your Blog

There you have it! The 9 essential things to do before starting a blog.

By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to success with your new blog.

Do you have any other tips for those thinking about starting a blog?

Let me know in the comments section below!

In Case You Missed Any of The ‘Start a Blog for Beginners‘ Series

Part 1: Why Start a Blog? 12 Damn Good Reasons to Start a Blog (7 Why You Shouldn’t)

Part 2: 17 Common Blogging Myths About Starting a Blog (Killing Your Chances for Success)

Part 3: 9 Things You Need to Do Before Starting a Blog (+ Helpful Advice to Get YOU Started)

Proceed to → Part 4: How To Start a Blog and Make Money in 2022 (Easy-to-Follow Steps!)

Part 5: 15 Essential Things to Do After Starting a Blog (+ Helpful Step-by-Step Instructions)

But Wait, There's More!

Don't leave without checking out our Extensive List of Blogging Tools & Resources to help you, Start, Build and Grow a profitable blogging business!

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About the Author -

Blogging since 2010, John has found his true calling as TheBlogPilot. He's a serial entrepreneur and business owner, who's mission is to help ambitious individuals find financial freedom through blogging - to start, grow & build a sustainable, money-making blogging business!

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FREE 7-Day Blogging BootCamp for Beginners!

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Why Start a Blog?

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