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Do you wish that you could have a successful blog that people love and flock to but you think that you can’t because you are on a budget?
I have good news for you!
You don’t need to have a lot of money to blog like a shining star. I know this may come as a shock to some new bloggers because so many so-called gurus would have you believe that you need to pay an arm and a leg (buying their products or affiliate products) to succeed.
I’m not denying that there are many great paid products out there. In fact many great bloggers recommend them because either they love them, they will get an affiliate payment, or both. There is no doubt that many paid products save a lot of time, help the blog to run more smoothly, teach great skills, help monetize, etc.
It is important to know what is absolutely worth paying for and what you can use for free which will serve you well.
One Thing You DO Need to Pay For
You do need to get your own domain name and pay for the hosting. Especially if you are looking to create an income through your blog or you are out to be a serious blogger who is taken seriously by others. (Your self-hosted WordPress platform is free to use on your domain name.)
Also if you are looking to earn money some of the free blogging platforms will shut you down. You will lose everything that you worked for on your blog and you really can’t put a price on that.
When you look at the cost involved you will find that it really is not very much at all. In fact your first financial blogging goal should be to have your blog pay for itself. Become an affiliate for some products that you stand behind and earn some money that way. Write a review on the product, that serves two purposes. First, to encourage your readers to buy it and secondly it will show up on the search engines if you have your SEO down.
The Rest Can be Free
Some might argue that the domain name and hosting is not the only things that you need to pay for. But if you are truly on a budget you can run a stellar blog only paying for those. Sure it might take a little more time but until you can afford the big ticket items there is a lot that you can do for free!
1. Do Your Research
A little research will show that there are free products similar to the sparkling shiny paid products but a new blogger may not realize this. The research can be completed fairly easily.
Grab your favorite search engine and start a search – don’t forget to use the word FREE. You can either find the products themselves or reviews on products. If you find some free products you need to do another search to find reviews on the product.
If you choose you can just try the product of course, the risk is low since you have not paid any money. Though depending on the product it could end up costing you time.
This happened to me when I first found my first free autoresponder. I didn’t understand fully how it worked. I was pretty far into it when I realized that I could not create new messages to send to subscribers after they subscribed. They could only receive messages that I have already wrote before they signed up. Thankfully I did discover that there are a couple of other autoresponders that allow me to run a list much more similarly to the paid autoresponders.
Clearly there is a benefit to reading a review or two to see what others like and don’t like about. You can get a bigger picture when choosing which one is best for you.
2. Ask Others What They Use
This is one way that networking comes in handy, as you build relationships people are more than happy to help you. I have spent a lot of time helping other bloggers figure things out on their blogs and others have helped me as well. I have learned a lot on my own, especially in the beginning when I hadn’t networked a lot yet. I understand how time consuming it can be so that is one reason that I love to help a friend out.
There are a few ways that you can effectively network (for free, of course!) to find the right people who can help you and ideally you will be able to help out too.
- Comment on other blogs, it is one very effective way to build relationships (and back links to your blog). Most bloggers take note of someone who consistently leaves valuable comments for them and will be glad to help out.
- Join a message board or forum on the topic of blogging. I am part of a great group and it’s nice to be able to just jump on and write a quick post and know that I will get answers that day!
- Join a tribe, you get to meet like minded bloggers and you can also ask questions within the tribe in most cases.
3. Get on the Mailing Lists
A lot of the really great bloggers save their best blogging advice for their subscribers. I have been blown away by some of the tips that have come to my inbox from some of the greats. When I get advice that good I have to stop and send them a quick thank you because it really is that good.
I do advocate being picky about which lists you are on because the wrong lists will fill up your inbox in a hurry, generally speaking the ones that you want won’t come more than 2-3 times a week unless the blogger’s big focus is their list. Anyone that offers exceedingly more value than sales pitches are keepers!
4. Use the Free Plugins
You can discover so many free plugins from your wordpress dashboard. Those plugins can really do a LOT for your blog, you can find plugins to help with SEO, with encouraging people to comment, keeping spam away, showcasing your popular or favorite posts, encouraging people to share your work on social media, and so much more.
One word of caution with the plugins: only add one at a time. Then test your blog to make sure that there aren’t any bugs caused by the plugin. If you add ten plugins and then check your blog you will not know which of those ten caused the bug.
If you put in a little work and find the right people you can have an amazing blog that people love for only the cost of the domain name and hosting. You don’t need to feel like your blog has to be less than you want it just because you are on a budget. Go out there and shine!
To Your Success,