Do you want to travel the world? It sounds like amazing right?!
I have been blogging since 2004 which is quite a long time. Even though I am still learning there are a few foolproof steps when it comes to starting a blog from scratch.
Travel blogging might be hard work but its so much fun and a definite plus when wanting to work with brands. The thing about blogging is that the content sticks around. I still get loads of hits on articles I posted more than a year ago! That means that ultimately the brands will get more exposure in the long run than on instagram. Its also a fun way to document your travels or just life and obviously make some extra money when you reach that stage.
Here is a quick and easy guide on how to start a travel blog!
Find your niche
You might be a little bit confused about this one. Didn’t we just establish we are starting a travel blog? Well there are plenty of different ways to make your travel blog stand out from the rest. If you want a clear voice in the blogging world you definitely need a niche.
Here are some examples:
- Family travel
- Budget travel
- Adventure travel
- Couple/romantic travel
- Digital nomad traveling
- Luxury travel
- Traveling with pets
- Disabled traveling
- Off the beaten track
- Foodie traveling
- Guides and itineraries
- Travel hacks
These are just a few different ones but you catch my drift. My blog is a mix of how to’s and travel inspiration. So you don’t have to do one specific thing but you need to have a clear overall message. It will be a bit confusing if you are a luxury traveler that does solo traveling but also talks a lot about traveling with pets and romantic honeymoon getaways that are great for backpackers. 😛 Some people are great at doing anything but starting out small and with a clear mission and idea will make writing content so much easier!
Get that blog name
Now that you know what you want to write about it’s time to get a blog name. Now this wont just be the name on the header but its also the address for your blog. What people will type to get there aka your domain ( mine is http://campsbaygirl.com ) I always tell people it’s of the utmost importance that even when you are brand new to blogging to buy your domain name. This means that you will rank on search engines from the start and always looks way more professional than a blogspot or tumblr page.
This has always been extremely difficult for me but there are some ways to make the process easie
- Firstly I would ask friends and family, sometimes you will get the best ideas from people that know you.
- Keep it short and interesting
- Avoid words that are difficult to spell or numbers as it might be confusing for people to remember.
- Love your name so much that you aren’t embarrassed to share it. I made the mistake in 2004 to register the domain superficialgirlsand I never really felt comfortable with the name even though it was kind of tongue in cheek.
- Make sure the name looks fine in url form
If you are still struggling there are loads of cool blog name generators that might be able to help you out online!
Set up hosting
Hosting confuses a lot of people but its necessary and really inexpensive at the end of the day. One of the easiest ways to get your blog hosted is with Bluehost. The steps are super simple and its not expensive at all. I wrote a full guide on how to sign up with Bluehost and install it here ( you get a free domain if you don’t have one when signing up but you can still use them if you have a domain already! )
Customise your site
WordPress is my favorite blogging platform and it’s super easy to install it when you have a Bluehostaccount. Choose your theme ( I have one I bought from pipdig ) but there are plenty of other free and paid options around. Now you can start doing things like adding pages ( about you page, contact page etc ) Adding in widgets in your sidebar and creating a mailing list form.
I love creating the look of my blog ( although I do change it up once in a while ) and its a fun way to get your message and personality across.
Here are a few things to remember when building your site
- Make it easy to read. I always find black writing on a white background the best.
- Don’t use too many colours and stick to a colour “theme” throughout the site
- Use plain fonts ( no curlz or comic sans please 😛 )
- Make it easy to navigate so people can find what they are looking for quickly.
Secure your social media channels ( if you haven’t already )
If you already have social media accounts this is the time to connect them to your blog. If you don’t then the best thing would be to sign up using the same name over all platforms. This is great for consistency but also for building your brand. People can now recognise your name everywhere and will know what to look for. It’s also way less confusing for everyone involved.
Create content and start sharing
The last step is to start creating epic content. I would say you need at least 10-15 well thought out, interesting blog posts before making your blog public. Once you have that you can index your site on google and start working on that traffic!
A good tip to do from the beginning is to instal something like Yoast that will help you with your post SEO. You want to make your content searchable from the very beginning to save yourself the trouble of going back and having to redo posts later.
Also sign up to pinterest and make pinable images for every single post even though no one might pin it now. Later down the line you will be so glad you did! ( Check out my beginners guide to pinterest here )
Remember to first and for most have a passion for blogging and not do it for money or fame. It takes a while to get the ball rolling and a lot of people seem to give up during that time.