Want to start a blog?
But… don’t want to invest.
I understand. 🙌
I also made this exact google search when I was starting out 5 years ago.
There are some reasons for which you would want to start a blog for free:
- To get familiar with the blogging process.
- For building a following first then launch a blog.
- For building authority on your area of expertise.
- To improve your writing skill.
If your reason matches with mine then please keep on reading, or move on.
Don’t worry, I am not going to start talking about how awesome blogging is, then push you to buy hosting service (which I am an affiliate of). 😜
There are almost thousands if not millions of ”How to start a blog” blog posts- some are totally awesome and some are just copy paste of others.
When people think about “blogging,” they think of, as Noah Kagan said, “a WordPress blog.”
It doesn’t have to be that way.
Of course, if you want to upgrade and make money you have to consider investing in a website.
I am guessing you are here because you have read a bunch of blog posts.
You see potential in blogging.
But not there yet to invest.
Still, want to get started to explore this territory.
I definitely feel you.
You don’t have to be like everyone else.
If you are wondering why I am writing about this, read the story here.
Or skip past to the meaty part of the post. (I have pointed it out with a cool page breaker)
When I was thinking about writing about my (official) first blog post. I also thought of writing the “ultimate guide of starting a blog”. Then I thought everyone else also writing the same content.
What can I do differently?
Then went to Quora to look for content ideas.
I noticed that- a person, let’s call him- Spammer John (which is not real by the way😂) was copy-pasting his article— ”how to start a blog”—to all the blogging related questions.
He was putting the same answer over and over regardless of the question or what the ”person who asked the question” was looking for.
Anyway, he was targeting all the ”how to start a blog” questions.
In one thread, a person, let’s call him— Good Joe ( because he asked a good question)— in quora, he asked:
“how to start a blog for free? And build writing skill and following?”— it’s a solid question.
There the Scammer John or S. John copy pasted his blog post.
Maybe G. Joe was having a bad day, I don’t know. He started a heated argument with S.John.
There was some exchange of names. and so on.
And I realized that the question G.joe asked still remained unanswered.
That’s why I am answering the question here on my blog.
————————|End of story|———————
The first thing that all the blog posts–titled “How to start a blog”–advice is to select a niche, buy a domain, a hosting service and start creating.
Which is absolutely correct.
But They also talk about how ugly, and unprofessional it is to go for “free blogging platforms”.
Which is a sense is not wrong but that’s not to correct either.
you, the person who just want to get started- is looking for something else.
Let’s be frank- you will not have the same facilities or advantages of a self-hosted blog with the free alternative.
I mean, duh. 😂
Nothing is free. You either pay money or invest time.
Having said that it is possible to start blogging without investing a dime and earn money.
It will not happen overnight.
Also, this blog post is not for those who are looking to make money by spamming or doing something unethical.
In this blog posts, I have tried to present free (in a sense) ways to start blogging, build a following, authority and possible ways to make money-
Without further ado let’s get into it.
How to start a blog for free in 6 steps:
1. Have a mindset of providing value
2. Decide on the purpose
3. Prepare to abandon your plan or ideas
4. Select a platform
5. Get in the habit of being consistent
6. Find your people and create conversations
More detainled explanation here-
1. Have a mindset of providing value:
It can be anything. From sharing how easily a person can cook breakfast in 10 min to how you can meditate to reduce stress.
A personal blog can’t just only have what did you do that day.
You can share your experience with the specific event, struggle or life-altering changes.
You can be both full of joy and sorrow.
We know life is not all happy and flowery.
But you have to keep in mind that people will be reading your blog. People like stories, emotions, and helpful information. So if you decide to blog, blog to provide help or value.
And be ready to not to get anything in return.
If you do this right. You will have die-heart fans who will love you and thank you for blogging.
2. Decide on a purpose
Why do you want to start a blog?
I am sure you have better things to do…so why blog?
Do you have to think about the purpose of your blog?
More importantly, why do you want to blog?
Your goal might change for your blog but you need a purpose to start.
Otherwise, you will be running around without any clue and quickly burn out.
So, it’s important to have a purpose or goal.
Do you want to blog about personal life, like an online journal?
Do you want to write about your skill and create online authority on that topic?
Do you want to share your experience with a specific event or journey? (Going to college, how to choose a major, how to make candles for a living, how to tackle stress, anxiety or depression…literally anything)
Or do you want to improve your writing skill?
(You got so much to say and you want to express your thoughts and emotions into words. Writing skill is something that only gets better with practice)
It all depends on you.
3. Prepare to abandon your plans or ideas
The reason I say this, you are starting out new, there will be a plethora of ideas in your brain.
You will want to start this and then tomorrow that.
It’s a good problem to have. But it’s a problem.
No idea or desire will be good unless you execute on it.
Ideas often seem perfect in our brains but the reality can be a whole lot of different experience.
So, whatever your ideas are, whatever your confusions are; put them in a paper.
And try doing research about them one by one.
Try crossing out some of them and decide an ‘interest’.
I am not saying select a niche because that’s something you will not figure out till you are well experienced in the blogging industry.
It’s not that hard but you can better view with experience.
So, to get started, just select an area of interest and a focus/goal.
For example, you do fishing on regular basis. You can blog about finishing.
Your interest will be in fishing and your focus will be showcasing your knowledge.
4. Select a platform
Now, is the time to pick out a platform to blog.
Because you are looking to start free, here are some free blogging sites-
3. Wix (/weebly)
First up- we have medium, this is perfect for you if you want a built-in audience. With a medium partner program, you also can earn good money for your article
This is number one in my list because the medium has become a huge publishing platform. You can grow a following and medium also lets you take that audience with you.
Meaning you can grow email list in the medium.
You just open an account and within 5 minutes you can publish content.
Unlike other free blogging platform or social media, the medium also helps you promote your content. ( not for all published content depends on your previous pieces and consistency)
With Medium, you can earn real money.
Check these guys-https://www.publishousnow.com/i-earned-a-whopping-0-13-my-first-month-writing-on-medium/
The best thing about writing in the medium is that you don’t need to be an artist or have to follow a certain SEO process.
Medium audience love stories, real talks, tough talks, motivation, real event, humor, mockery.
What they don’t like is boring content.
You can write about a small thing that occurred in your sleep and still get praised for it.
It’s a very human-friendly community. And you will learn how to creatively express yourself if you follow some of the popular writers on Medium.
My favorites are-
Next on my list is WordPress (the free version). This is perfect for blogging and getting used to the platform.
if you are planning to do blogging for profit, then the experience of using WordPress will come in handy. But the free version has a very limited option of customization but right now we are not looking many options.
We are looking to grow our blogging skill.
WordPress will not give you much option to monetize your content.
Also, you have to do your own marketing.
Blogger is pretty similar to WordPress except the infrastructure is different. Blogger is actually pretty basic that’s what makes it more user-friendly.
You can basically start writing in 2 minutes, you just need a Gmail account. I think you already got that.
Again like WordPress, you will have a subdomain and you have to do your own marketing.
Next and final thing on my list is wix. It’s great for who want a beautiful website with blog option.
Wix is a free website builder perfect for non-techies. It gives you free hosting under a subdomain (xyz.wix.com). You just have to pick a template and you will be ready to go.
(Side note- to open a free Wix website- first create an email/yahoo account with the same name which you want to name your blog/website. Because wix automatically creates a subdomain by the email address. You cannot edit that name. To create an email address with your blog name.)
It gives you a lot more options than WordPress. Like you can build an email list and even sell products in your free Wix website. But you have to do your own marketing.
Similar to Wix there is another free platform- Weebly.
It’s pretty much the same as Wix, the design is different.
I personally like wix more but I have seen many new affiliate bloggers using Weebly to promote a product.
The choice is yours, create accounts in both of these and see which one you like best.
Blogging platforms outside of medium, and wix-
You don’t need a separate blogging platform to blog. You can actually start blogging on social media.
They are free and you can promote your content by being active on the platform.
You can blog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, Tumblr.
You can start your blog in a social environment.
According to Gary Vaynerchuk- social media platforms are, by definition, “blogs,” just with different restrictions.
You can use your facebook timeline as a way to tell stories and educate people about your brand and about your interest.
5. Get in the habit of being consistent
Consistency is very important even if you don’t have the perfect content every time.
Getting I habit of creating content is so important no matter what are you starting.
The habit of being consistent and keep the show running, you will develop a muscle of creating.
That will help you scale your work and you will also be able to see and feel the deep level stuff.
Most of all you will know if this what you can do in the future.
It’s perfectly fine, if you are not good at writing, maybe you are good at video, maybe you are good at creating graphics.
All of these are content and mind you me there is a place for every type of content.
That is the advantage of the existence of so many social media platforms.
Starting a blog for free, you will have to give more effort. Because you will not invest money, so you have to give the effort to figure out what works for you.
6. Find your people and create conversations
This is a very important step.
You are creating content, you are excited about it.
But what’s next?
Who you want to see your content? And be as pumped as you are about your content?
You have to find your people.
If you are interested in college life and want to talk and share your achievements and struggles, then you have to find other college goers or people who are preparing themselves for college.
They are the people who will benefit and will get inspiration from your content.
A businessman who didn’t go to college or not thinking about getting into one, won’t even think about looking into college life.
So, you have to look out for people whom you want to speak to or share to.
This will make your writing more specific and more insightful.
When you are starting out with blogging- join groups, forums, community or follow a person who also talks about the same thing as you do.
Participate in their conversation, speak your mind and build rapport.
This is how you can start a blog for free and start right.
Because posting something online isn’t blogging. Blogging has a process of its own.
And if blogging and earning money interests you then you definitely start your blog today.
Now, in this internet world, if you are different you are gold.
Because everyone is talking.
And most of them are talking about the same thing.
If you can present it in a different way, you will instantly stand out.
It may come to you naturally to see things differently. But those of us who are not gifted like others, the only way for us to succeed is through work and patience.
We just have to stick to walking before running.
So, start your walk and get onto your building your blog that you have been putting off for months.