Blogging Tips: Basic Steps to Create Your Own Blog

What steps to consider for setting up your personal blog

Profile photo of Harleena Singh - | 118 comments
A lady blogger giving blogging tips to create your own blog

There’s something special about this post on blogging tips. Apart from being written with intent to help the new bloggers, it’s a milestone for me.

Yes, I feel proud to share with you all, that this is the 150th post on Aha!NOW. 🙂

I never thought I’d survive for this long in the Blogosphere! In the blogging world, where many stars come and go, rise and fall – I consider my stint as a lucky survivor.

Over the last three years, I faced many blogging problems, obstacles, and challenges – just like any other new blogger.

However, I feel happy that I was able to resolve and overcome them to continue my blogging journey. Along the way I’ve learned my lessons, and now I wish to share them with all of you.

As a result, I’ve created a new category of “Blogging” on Aha!NOW, where I’ll share my experiences about blogging, and invite other seasoned bloggers to do the same.

Are you thinking of becoming a blogger and wanting to create your own blog?

Well, you’re in the right place at the right time because this first post on blogging deals with that very first step of blogging.

“The first thing you need to decide when you build your blog is what you want to accomplish with it, and what it can do if successful.” ~ Ron Dawson

Why Blogging Tips on Aha!NOW

With the lack of details, tips, and ways of blogging – the blogging journey surely becomes tedious and a difficult one, which takes more of your time and effort.

Why is that you might ask?

Well, that’s because there are not many mentors to guide you, or to tell you the right way from the wrong.

And because you are new, you don’t even know whom to ask or where to seek help from.

But if you’re a new blogger, and come to know now what other bloggers learned after many months and years of blogging, won’t you have a jump start to your blogging journey!

That’s exactly what I intend doing by sharing these blogging tips with you on Aha!NOW – help you start with the right foot 🙂

“Don’t focus on having a great blog. Focus on producing a blog that’s great for your readers.” ~ Brian Clark

Now let me tell you that I am no expert to teach you any tips about blogging, nor do I take myself to be at par with the blogging experts.

There’s no dearth of content and posts about bloggers and blogging on the internet.

But as you know that Aha!NOW is basically a self-help blog, and it’s all about sharing experiences. Being a blogger, I just want my readers to benefit from my personal experiences, even if they’re just a drop in the ocean.

I may not be a successful blogger to reach the level of being a problogger – not every blogger becomes that. But this fact should not dishearten you to pursue blogging.

Moreover, I take pride in being a determined blogger and the fact that I’m still a student, who is learning new lessons about blogging every day.

The wonderful thing about blogging is that every individual’s experience is important, and every blogger can be a student as well as a teacher.

So it’s not only me, but the entire Aha!NOW blog community bloggers who’re going to be mentors here – sharing their best blogging tips.

There will be many posts on blogging and bloggers, though initially it is targeted to new bloggers, but I’m sure even the seasoned bloggers will find something for themselves.

I intend to make this blogging category to be a platform on Aha!NOW, where bloggers can share their experiences, problems, solutions, and thoughts about blogging.

So, here is the first post about the tips on blogging, which are needed to create your own blog. 🙂

Man giving blogging tips to blogger about how to create a blog

5 Steps to Create Your Own Blog

The first requirement for blogging and to become a blogger is to build your own blog.

You can also become a guest blogger without creating your own blog, but your identity as a blogger develops only after you’re a blog owner.

When I started blogging, I was like a blank board.

All I knew was that to be a blogger one should have a domain, a free blog, and something to write about.

Is that all you need to start blogging? Well, no.

But that’s how most of us started as bloggers, didn’t we?

I want you to start off better than how I did, so here are some blogging tips that also include my good and bad experiences in creating my blog.

Before I proceed further, I want the new or aspiring bloggers to know that I’ll be using some technical terms like domain name, web space, Blogger, and WordPress.

STEP 1: Decide your niche

I put this at the top of my blogging tips list because it is the most important factor to consider before you start a blog.

Before you create your own blog, you first need to know what you’ll be writing about.

For that, you’ve to look within and assess yourself. Ask yourself – what are your interests and strengths?

What are you so good at that you think is worth sharing? Do you think your ideas and thoughts will help others and be of value to them?

You may be good at understanding or resolving relationship problems, or have rich experience of parenting, or possess tons of health tips that you use in your life.

Then go ahead and share your thoughts with others by creating your blog in that respective niche. However, remember not to start with a multi-niche blog all of a sudden.

As a new blogger your blog should be niche oriented, though try to focus on a single niche or as few and specific as possible.

That way, you develop authority and people value what you offer them through your blog posts.

Later with time, you can add more niches to your blog if you wish, as I did, though you need to see that you’re able to maintain and balance them all.

It’s vital that your posts from the various niches are interlinked, so that all your niches help your blog reach greater heights.

Blogging Tip – Select one or few related niches that you’re good at. Check out relevant niche blogs on the internet and study them in all aspects to help create your own blog niche.

STEP 2: Choose an appropriate domain name

As every individual needs a name, in the same way, every newly created blog needs a domain name. I used GoDaddy to purchase my domains.

It’s good if the domain name of your blog matches with your chosen blog niche. However, be aware that Google recently struck on websites and blogs with exact match domain names.

I had no idea about the SEO relevance of a domain name when I started blogging, but I’m glad that people have accepted and liked my blog’s name for what it is now.

Blogging Tip – Choose a domain name that is short, easy to remember, relevant to your niche and in accordance to Google’s suggestions.

STEP 3: Select the correct blogging platform

I started on the Blogger platform, and continued with it for one full year.

But once I came across WordPress, which was a completely different blogging experience, I couldn’t stop myself from switching over to it.

I found that WordPress makes blogging easier, is more professional, and simple to manage as compared to a Blogger platform.

Though I understand that there can be differences in opinion and choices about the preferred blogging platform, and many bloggers still prefer Blogger, but this factor should be decided early on.

I mentioned this because I lost some of my ranking, comments, and social media counts when I migrated my blog from Blogger to WordPress.

Blogging Tip – Research about your preferred blogging platform and use it from the very beginning of your blogging journey. Avoid blog migration in later stages of blogging.

STEP 4: Get a premium theme or template

Blogger and WordPress are just the platforms or different software that are designed for blogging. If you want your blog to look good, you need to upgrade it with additional goodies.

If you’ve chosen WordPress, then you need to install a premium theme on it. Themes give you additional functions and features, and help you make your blog look different from the other blogs.

There are two major WordPress theme frameworks – Genesis and Thesis, apart from others.

And, there are also other WordPress theme providers like ThemeForest, PageLines, Catalyst, Elegant, Headway, etc. So, you can choose the one according to what you like and based on your niche.

If you’ve chosen the Blogger platform, you can get plenty of templates to change the way your blog looks like.

Blogging Tip – I’d suggest don’t go for the free themes or templates. The premium versions might cost a bit, but they give you better performance in terms of design and SEO, and peace of mind in terms of security and support.

STEP 5: Buy reliable web space

If you’ve created your blog on the Blogger platform, then you can have it for free.

But if you’ve opted for the WordPress platform, then you can choose between the free WordPress blog and a self-hosted WordPress blog.

You need to buy web space from a web hosting company if you choose the self-hosted WordPress to create your own blog.

My blog is presently hosted on web space bought on HostGator.

Remember not to go in for a hosting service that is very cheap as it might not be completely secure, reliable, or may have more downtime. More so, their customer support might not be good too!

The speed of your blog also depends on your web hosting, and this is a major factor for the success of your blog.

Here are some factors for choosing a free or commercial web host for your blog.

Blogging Tip – Choose a web host with a good track record, reputation, and helpful customer support. Poor or bad web hosting can cause harm to your blog.

“Blogging is good for your career. A well-executed blog sets you apart as an expert in your field.” ~ Penelope Trunk

Once you follow these basic blogging tips and create your own blog, then you only need to start creating quality content.

Writing the blog post, optimizing it for the search engines, and sharing it with the blogosphere is the next exciting part of blogging.

I know that most of you are already accomplished and professional bloggers who’ve gone through this initial phase in your blogging careers. You may have experienced things which are not mentioned here as this is not a comprehensive post.

So, I’d like you to share your personal experiences, problems, obstacles, mistakes, and other blogging tips to help others achieve success in blogging, especially new bloggers or those who haven’t started blogging but are contemplating to do so.

As bloggers who have been blogging for a few years now, I feel it’s our duty to help newbies in every possible way. So, let’s join hands here and make things easy for them. 🙂

“Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark. Professionals built the Titanic.” ~ Steve Shearer

Over to you –

Did you have a smooth start as a blogger? If you’ve to create your own blog again from scratch, then how differently would you do it? Share your blogging tips, thoughts, and experiences in the comments below.

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos 



Last Updated on: March 16th, 2017


Profile photo of Harleena Singh
Harleena Singh is a positive thinker and a freelance writer. She loves to write inspiring and thought provoking posts on self-improvement, family, relationships, health, and other aspects of life. She's also a blogger, who loves to share her blogging knowledge and experiences on her personal blog, HarleenaSingh.com.

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118 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Babanature

    July 20, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    It is good seeing you adding a blogging tip category to your blog. This will indeed help your blog to reach a wider reach. Keep it up… 🙂

    When I started blogging newly, I did not have any mentor or anybody to put me through in this blogging game. I did a lot of mistakes which I don’t pray blogger should face. Right now, all that has passed now I can proudly say that I know what I am doing in the blogging world 🙂

    Getting a good domain name is the first thing any blogger should do, not just any name but a name that can bring authority. All tips are recommended and well taken care of. I always wish you success dear friend. Do have a blessed weekend

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 21, 2013 at 9:57 pm

      Hi Babanature,

      It sure was in the pipeline, and I think the milestone of it being the 150th post on the blog was the right time to start off with it 🙂

      I can so well understand your situation, having gone through the same because we really have no one to turn do as we don’t know anyone in the Blogosphere when we start blogging initially. All our blogging friends we make much later, or once we start hunting around and looking for how-to-do things, but even the well-known bloggers are too busy to really help out the newbies or be as mentors to them.

      We all learn from our mistakes and that makes us what we are today – isn’t it? I know you are a well established blogger now who is always helping people with informative posts, and I do enjoy learning from you.

      Absolutely! That’s again some of us don’t really bother or care about till it’s much later, and then we change the domain name or re-start things. I hope new bloggers or those who are still finding their way around, don’t commit the mistakes we did once they go through this post and the series that would follow up here too.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. Happy weekend as well 🙂

    • Amit

      July 24, 2013 at 12:50 pm

      @Babanature.. You are right about the domain name, even Harleena Mam has also mentioned a bit about SEO importance of domain name. But my message is for those who has already purchased some domain name that is Off SEO and not related to your niche and has invested a lot of time and hard work writing and accumulating posts on your blog, don’t worry too much about domain names…

      At this point, it does not make any sense to start from scratch with a new domain name. Being there matters. Even existing with something odd for long time matters to get into focus.

      The only thing that makes sense is that write in the interest of the readers and promote it properly and believe me that people would try to remember you and eventually they succeed in remembering you if your post can add value to their life.

      It is definitely better to start with a good domain name having SEO importance but sometimes the only important thing is to keep adding value and Search Engines are quite well to bring your content into focus if the content has some real weight within it.

  2. Pramod

    July 20, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    Great Tips Harleena.

    One should choose a topic that suits the domain name and the topic should be of interest not only to the reader but also for the publisher.If a wrong topic is chosen , the publisher would not enjoy blogging (which would reflect in the blog posts) and the blog wouldn’t receive much traffic.The blog should be updated with high quality posts along with links from high PR/Traffic Blogs and follow high quality blogs like this one. This is what i’ve learnt in my 2 and a half months of blogging career 😀 .

    Hope this helps to newbies seeking advice !

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 21, 2013 at 10:39 pm

      Hi Pramod,

      Glad you liked these tips to create your own blog 🙂

      Yes indeed, choosing the domain name that goes with your interest and topic you would like to blog about is important. However, in my case things were very different as I mentioned above, and I think I wanted to AHA my readers whenever they visited my blog, so the title was such!

      You should blog about a topic you are passionate about, or else it reflects in your writing. I agree there, you should be consistent with your post and updating your blog once or twice a week ensures your readers are happy and you can also cater to the traffic to your blog. Yes – getting links from high PR blogs is good, though for newbies it’s tough to achieve that, unless you have someone from a high PR visiting your blog, and that’s where we must try and help our new fellow bloggers, which sadly doesn’t happen.

      You have surely learnt your lessons well within this short time span, and all of these are already chalked out to be covered in this blogging tips series over the next few months too.

      Thanks for stopping and contributing to the post, and yes, I’m sure newbies would have learnt a lesson from your comment. 🙂

    • Amit

      July 24, 2013 at 1:09 pm

      @Pramod, I do agree with you that being a publisher if you are not enjoying the topic you can’t produce engaging content. Eventually the readers will not get any interest in reading your content and it will soon turn into a less blogging habit.

      But about linking to high PR/Traffic blogs there is 1 thing that you should take care of is that don’t use too many links because it will cause adverse effect in 2 ways.

      1) Google will penalize you for link spamming.
      2) Over linking will cause your link juice to get shifted to that high PR blog you are linking to and hence your PR will be adversely affected.

      Yes, you should link only when absolutely needed to refer some important information and direct your readers toward that site. This will not only prove your authority in the eyes of Google but you can also enjoy the benefit of your own link juice.

  3. Johan Bengtsson

    July 20, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    Congratulations on the 150th post and thanks for another great guide. Let’s aim for another 150 great blog posts 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 21, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      Hi Johan,

      Thanks for your kind wishes 🙂

      Nice to know that you liked the start of the series on these blog tips to create your own blog.

      Oh yes, there are going to be many more posts coming up, so you just need to watch out for them.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

      • James McAllister

        August 9, 2013 at 2:34 pm

        We don’t just like these series of blog tips, we love them. 🙂

        Blogging is becoming so much more popular for everyday people, even the non-tech savvy are starting blogs, which is wonderful to see. As more and more people are starting blogs, more and more people are looking for informational posts such as this one to help them along the way.

        Looking forward to even more articles from you.

  4. Ehsan

    July 20, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Hey Harleena, great to see you sharing your blogging experience here on Aha-now – my favorite topic actually 😉

    You’ve said it all in the 5 steps, loved it!

    Deciding your niche is definitely the most important step, but I’d put planning a blog at the top of any blogging-tips list because by planning, a blogger will always know what should they do to get what they want.

    Blogging about something you’re passionate about will make you stand out, so It’s important first to find your passion and start your blog on something you’ve a real interest and experience on.

    Some people are passionate about more than one thing, so they blog about too many things which isn’t good. Blogging about too many things will confuse the readers. In that case, If I’m passionate about more than one thing, I’d blog about the one I can write the most on.

    Loved all your advice on getting a good domain name, blogging platform, theme and hosting. Thanks for sharing it Harleena, recommended for newbies!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 21, 2013 at 11:32 pm

      Hi Ehsan – good to have you back 🙂

      I know this IS your favorite topic and something that most of my other blogger friends can well relate to. This was another reason to start these series – to get you ALL over to the blog 😉

      Glad you liked the tips mentioned, which was something I went through, and so must you I think. I agree with you there – planning is important for anything for that matter. The reason for doing what you want to do is what you alone can and must decide before starting anything.

      Absolutely! The passion needs to be there, or else you can really cannot give your full to the post you write, it does show in your work too. That’s why I started this blog because I knew I had something to share with others, based on my experiences and knowledge gathered being a writer.

      Aha…are you hinting at me there! Well, you are right that people start blogging about too many things at once, which isn’t good as you confuse your readers.

      Thankfully for me it was very gradual because I initially started this blog with parenting and family related posts. And once they picked up pace and I knew I had a lot more to share, I added relationships and so on, one at a time as I was getting lots of good response and feedback from what I shared, which kept encouraging me to move ahead. So, if you do it this way, perhaps it works out, though remaining focused on your niche that interests you is the key.

      I agree with you, write what you are passionate about and if you have a single niche, you are able to focus and thus rank better because of that too. But if you have a multiple niche blog, you need to cater to all the categories, though off and on you can make the adjustments accordingly, or else the other niches suffer. I’d suggest to plan out your month and divide your posts based on the various niches, so that the uniformity is maintained.

      Thanks for taking out the time to stop by and sharing your blogging experiences with us, which I’m sure everyone would benefit from. I appreciate your shares too 🙂

  5. Corina Ramos

    July 21, 2013 at 1:26 am

    Congratulations on your 150th post…that is definitely something worth celebrating!

    This post is like a jackpot for newbie bloggers and for seasoned ones who can use a reminder or two…sometimes we have to get back to basics :).

    My blogging journey started off kind of rocky. I had zero experience in blogging and site building and all that combined resulted in bad decisions.

    I started following the advice of some great bloggers and managed to make a fresh new start with my blog. And that’s my advice for anyone starting out…to seek the advice of seasoned bloggers.

    Thanks so much for sharing your blogging tips. I wish you many more successful years! Hope you’re enjoying your weekend!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 22, 2013 at 12:13 am

      Hi Corina,

      Thanks so much for our wishes, and yes, it does give a sense of achievement somewhere 🙂

      Ah…I do hope it helps new bloggers in creating their own blog, because I know it wasn’t easy for me when I started off, and I can never forget that time. Oh yes…we do need to get back to basics to brush our skills, even if we’ve been blogging for years!

      I think most of us were like that, though because I started on a free platform, I didn’t have much to lose and I didn’t switch over till I was very sure and had found my way about. But still, mistakes and problems, we all made- didn’t we?

      I agree with you there, seek advice, keep your channels of learning always open, ask questions when you don’t understand something, and just reach out and connect. Yes, not everyone is helpful. In-fact most successful bloggers are too busy to help others, but there are always exceptions and if you keep trying you will come across many such bloggers too, who are ready to help, provided you ask them or seek their help.

      I was a little unlucky there because I really knew no one, and would remain busy with my writing projects mainly and that hardly left me any time to reach out and connect with people. It was only when I lessened on my work and took more interest into blogging, did it all work out for me, though I learnt a lot of things on my own by visiting many sites and blogs. It was much later that I met experienced bloggers, and then it all became a lot easier.

      Thanks for your kind wishes, Corina. I appreciate you taking out the time to stop by here, and I’m sure everyone would learn from your blogging tips and experiences here 🙂

  6. Lisa

    July 21, 2013 at 5:27 am

    Harleena, congratulations on the 150th post. Gosh I wish I could go back and re-start the blog on WordPress from the beginning. It would have been easier than migrating.

    But I do like blogger and keep a photo blog there that I love to play with and just do it for fun. Keeps my feet wet using Blogger and learning the changes as well.

    I love your quotes in this post Harleena. Especially “Blogging is good for your career. A well-executed blog sets you apart as an expert in your field.” ~ Penelope Trunk.

    I sure have learned a lot along the way and am sure I will learn much more to come. Congrats again Harleena, and I look forward to your next 150 posts!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 22, 2013 at 12:30 am

      Hi Lisa,

      Thanks for your kind wishes 🙂

      I agree with you there, the migration process isn’t easy, especially if you are totally new and don’t really know the right way of going about it all. I did my best from the resources I came across, but still lost a lot along the way. It was much later that I came across posts explaining how you could have saved those comments or counts, though if they really do work or not, I’ve no idea.

      Yes, I also miss Blogger at times, but I know it’s tough for me to get into another blog at the moment, but you never know of the future 🙂

      Ah…I love quotes, and though they do take a while to hunt, just like the images, I feel they add to the post.

      Yes indeed, we are forever learning something new, every single day. And if we keep our hearts and minds open, and are willing to take it all in, there’s a lot we can gather in no time – isn’t it?

      Thanks once again for stopping by, and yes, there would certainly be many more to come, with more niches and categories added, though gradually 🙂

  7. Perambur Kumar

    July 21, 2013 at 8:36 am

    Harleena you’re on the right line.

    This is what I expect from you as a Senior blogger (problogger).

    Congrats for 150th posts. People don’t know how difficult to survive in blogging. Writing 150th post is not that easy as you think. It shows your dedication and passion towards blogging arena. Hope I will see and read your 300th post. That day is not faraway because you’re writing atleast 3 posts a week.

    This post not only for newbies but also for probloggers to refresh their old memories. I also doing the same in blog. Ya teaching from basics is an excellent idea. But nobody aware of this fact. There are only few bloggers start their blog post from basics or scratch. Most of the them are US bloggers. Last week I started that, this week you’ve posting this post. What a co-incidence. Be happy because there are only two people doing this from India (at present). One is you and another one is me. I am happy to see you follow all my guidelines on SEO for this post.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:29 am

      Hi Kumar,

      Ah..thanks so much for your kind wishes and words, but although I am senior, but not yet anywhere close to being called a Problogger
      because I know I’ve a long way to go. There’s still a lot to learn, improve, and implement. 🙂

      I agree with you there, blogging isn’t easy because beside the writing part, which for me doesn’t take much time, it’s the other things that follow thereafter that are time consuming. And at the same time you’ve to try to keep up your spirits and strive for persistence and perfection.

      Yes indeed, if blogging becomes your passion, you can achieve a great deal. For nearly a year, while I was on the Blogger platform, I used to only post once a week, though that time both my blogs were functional. But when I switched to WordPress, I wanted to make this blog better, so started posting here twice a week and put the writing blog on hold for a while.

      Oh yes… you will definitely read the 300th post and many more also, because there is a lot lined up for the coming months – more categories, more niches, and much more. Although I write every single day, whether it’s for my clients or otherwise, but the blog posts are presently twice a week only.

      Yes indeed, this post is for any blogger but targeted mainly for newbies because of the problems they face when they start their blogging journey. I guess I can never forget my time when I started off, so just want to make sure to share information so that it helps those bloggers in some ways. That would be the main aim of these series – and there is no limit to learning, and sharing it with others too, isn’t it?

      I agree with you that very few people take to really teach things to bloggers, based on their experiences, or based on what they’ve learnt along the way, which makes me wonder why? Most of my posts, whether on blogging or any niche are always written with an aim to help others in some way or the other, so information shared is appreciated and valued that way too.

      However, I prefer just taking one post at a time for me. I like to start from the basics, even concerning all the topics I write about. Well, I think there’ll must be many others who write so and write better. What really matters is the intent and effect of the posts.

      Thanks again for your words of appreciation and for contributing to this post. 🙂

  8. Prince Molak

    July 21, 2013 at 8:53 am

    Thanks for this wonderful Post ma, the most important thing while starting a blog is to choose a Good niche as you have rightly said, not choosing a good niche is the most painful mistake i have make in my entire Blogging career.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:30 am

      Welcome to the blog Prince!

      Glad you liked this post on creating your own blog 🙂

      Yes indeed, choosing the niche that you like and know for sure that you can write about is important. Sorry to hear that you weren’t able to choose the right one for your blog, but was that the one earlier to this blog?

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  9. Priya

    July 21, 2013 at 9:56 am

    Congrats Harleena for your 150th post. Looking forward to see more quality posts like these. Blogging Tip idea is good. I suggest newbies to choose a domain name which looks unique and gain brand image for that slowly and steadily in future.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:32 am

      Welcome to the blog Priya!

      Thank you for your kind wishes, and yes, I do plan writing more about blogging in these series and later too.

      Yes indeed, those are good suggestions and I’m sure newbies would value your views.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  10. Priya

    July 21, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Imp SEO tip for your site: don’t use breadcrumbs as it will spoil your site seo …have a look at these screenshot of yours- prntscr(dot)com/1gmn73 you are losing the importance of keywords provided by your permalinks..breadcrumbs can be used only in ecommerce sites such as ebay, flipkart. now look at this screenshot- prntscr(dot)com/1gmngq and mine prntscr(dot)com/1gmnso and mashable’s prntscr(dot)com/1gmo0v prvsly mashable also used the same breadcrumbs and later stopped using it … so do use permalinks otherwise you will lose important keyword ranking in the links.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:34 am

      Hi Priya,

      As apparent from what Kumar pointed out in the Facebook discussion, where you had written this comment, that there are different opinions about breadcrumbs among the SEO experts.

      I use Yoast and it’s creator strongly recommends using breadcrumbs. Even I find it helpful when I find them on other sites while browsing. But I also understand the point you’re making – and you’ve substantial proof to support that as well. I appreciate you sending those screenshot links. I’ve always wondered why do I only see the category and not the full URL in the Google search excerpts.

      In the Facebook conversation, you did suggest to not index the breadcrumbs even if we decide to have them appear on our blogs. I wonder how you do that and if it will not have any adverse effect, which Kumar think it will have.

      Thanks for mentioning and pointing out this important factor that you need to consider when you create your own blog. I guess we need more discussion on it; may be in some future post. 🙂

  11. Shalu Sharma

    July 21, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    Very comprehensive on how to create your own blog. You are a very popular blogger and I congratulate you for that. You have done a tremendous job of this blog and is great resource. Well done Harleena. I glad I have a popular blogger like you as a friend.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:35 am

      Hi Shalu,

      Nice to know that you liked the post 🙂

      Ah…thanks for saying that, though you are no less and I marvel at your accomplishments and reach too. I think you are an amazingly enterprising fellow blogger and dear friend, and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors. Not to mention the latest feather in your cap of releasing your eBook!

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post 🙂

  12. Ashutosh

    July 21, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    First of all, congratulations for successfully making your 150th post. 🙂 Yes, blogging is not easy and the worst part is that people looking at it from outside consider it as a very easy thing to do.

    People around me always tell me that its such a good and easy thing. I agree on the first part that is is good but not easy. I think that blogging is a completely research laboratory where we as bloggers are always researching and testing the things that works and something that doesn’t works.

    Your are right, we are teachers as well as students in our blogging world and there is no end to it.

    Thanks for sharing your deep insights and opening the new section on blogging. 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:36 am

      Hi Ashutosh, good to have you back 🙂

      Thanks so much for your kind wishes. I agree, blogging is not easy at all, in-fact it’s a full time job I would say, if you are really dedicated and committed to it. I agree with you there, people in the offline world actually don’t have any idea about it, nor is it very valued too, which is rather sad.

      People either think it’s easy, or they have no idea and feel it’s a useless way to make money, if you do that through your blogs or online work. Yes indeed, most of us are forever learning something new, or keep trying out things, because what works for one, may or may not work for another. One just has to keep on trying new things and experiment with what works best for us. Though the basic things remain the same, there is still a lot that lies behind the scenes, which none of us really know.

      We are teachers and students, both I feel because we keep learning new things, and what we learn, we are able to share with others – at least we should, to help them in some way or the other.

      Thanks for stopping by, and yes, there would be a lot more covered in the “Blogging” section, and also a few more sections that I’d slowly be adding to the blog – so stay tuned! 🙂

  13. Nitin

    July 21, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    Hey hi Harleena Singh,

    First of all thanks for this informative post. I want to know one thing that why you suggested not to choose a multi niche domain. I personally think that it is a good idea to start with and to get more visitors!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:38 am

      Welcome to the blog, Nitin!

      I’m glad you like the post. I think it’s a good strategy to first gather some audience, build a community, and then start offering them more.

      I agree that multiple niches on your blog could increase your traffic, but there are many who advice against it. I personally started with a single niche and progressed towards sort of being a multi-niche blog, which so far works for me, and I can only suggest to other if, how, and what works for me.

      Thanks for your input and hope to see you around. 🙂

  14. Mayura

    July 21, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Wow… 150th post up here! 🙂 Congratulations and I’m looking forward to read your 1000th post too dear. Plus, I’m really glad you added blogging category here as I know you have got a lot to share as you pour such wonderful blogging tips in some of your comments.

    Actually, I’m worried about that mentors too Harleena. I’ve heard many times that how bloggers had terrible experiences by following wrong advises given by the mentors. But I’m glad that bloggers who had ’em share their experiences online, so newbies can avoid falling into the same trap as they did 🙂

    Gosh… Deciding niche is not easy at all Harleena 🙂 A friend of mine wanted to start a blog and she embraced the favorite niche she had in mind. But after two months, she found that it’s not whole niche but a part of it, that she really fallen in love with 🙂 I’d add that you won’t need to be disappointed that you had the wrong niche at initially. It’s like finding the right career later on 😉

    Well, selecting a domain name has different views Harleena 🙂 Some say SEO matters and extremely cautious when selecting their domain name. Even pay 3x or more too. But simply, we can take Google as an example 😉

    When it comes to blogging platforms, I think it depends on the personal preferences and the real purpose of blogging dear 🙂 As I believe there’s no best blogging platform that everyone wanna join in. Bloggers have different tastes. I think it’s up to bloggers to find what’s best for ’em 🙂

    As you implied, migration needs to be done properly though, else counts, comments and even content can be lost in the process. Actually, counts and rankings are identical to URLs, so if you change URL structure, they will be affected.

    I’m not really fond of themes and web space much, but it’s always a wise idea to research about them before you buy them. As I believe, blogging friends who already have a premium theme and got a hosting partner are the best ones to ask about ’em.

    One thing I’d love to mention for bloggers is that it takes time to learn what’s right / wrong and to get results 🙂 They just need to keep blogging and will know all they need to know over time.

    I really appreciate the mention too Harleena 🙂

    You have a lovely weekend dear! 🙂

    Cheers…

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm

      Hi Mayura,

      Absolutely! It seems impossible, but it is true when I saw the count that it is indeed the 150th post, and it just seemed like yesterday when I was interviewed by Praveen where he mentioned it was my 35th post!

      Oh yes…with all the support of wonderful friends like you reaching those many posts wouldn’t be tough I am sure. Yes, I think I’ve learnt a little these past years, again from blogging experts like you and this was one category I wanted to start mainly also because I get a lot of messages from people asking me how things are done regarding blogging, or how I do them. It made me think of ways to help those people out, and thus – this new category started, which I hope to expand a little, but all with one sole aim of helping others who may not know about these things.

      I’ve really never had any mentors so as to speak, just good friends like you and many others whose blogs have been a great source of learning from me. Moreover, I’ve always believed in researching things on Google and learning them myself, because there can be no better way of learning other than that as you are sure of things then. Yes, it does take more time as compared to having a mentor who might tell or teach you things in one go, but I wonder how many of them do so for free, or if they have such free time to spare for newbies. May be the mentors didn’t impart the wrong knowledge as you mentioned above, it might be that new bloggers often don’t understand certain things or terms, or they take time to learn things, for which anyone needs lots of time and patience to teach them – bit by bit. I agree with you there – those blogging experts or probloggers who are helping people through their posts are doing a commendable job, though again, how many are really approachable due to the lack of time or their busy lives, to really teach or help you – very few I think.

      Absolutely! Deciding the niche is vital before you start your blog, but as you mentioned, if you feel that it’s not what you like or you’d prefer something better, it’s not bad to switch over, though do that before it gets too late. For me it was easy because I was on a free Blogger platform, so I had all the doors open for me and the time to decide. But I was very sure of what I wanted before I started, and I just kept adding categories gradually and things kept taking place. Once I switched to WordPress, there’s been no looking back, though that time, it was yet another tough decision and we discussed and talked a lot about it at home, then stepped ahead.

      I agree with you there, for some domain name should be based on their SEO or whatever, and I can well understand that too because I saw my blog for freelance writers, which had the apt SEO word in the name itself, rank much better and faster than this one. But it’s not that this one isn’t doing well, or for that matter, even the name of your blog, though it’s your brand name, do well.

      Yes indeed, and your blog is a perfect example of Blogger doing so well and that’s out of your own personal choice – isn’t it? I was guided to switch to WordPress because it’s more professional and perhaps good for SEO, and I did. But I missed a lot of network followers that somehow were more on that one, besides the Google ASdsense, which surprisingly does much better on Blogger because it’s perhaps Google’s baby, one can never say, unless there are other reasons. Nevertheless, I agree with you totally, it all depends on the personal choice of bloggers which one they want to choose.

      Yes, mine was badly affected when I migrated, even though I was very careful and did things as guided. But I don’t want to think about what’s lost and gone, but think ahead. Moreover, I’m glad I made the switch when I hardly had very many posts, perhaps 35-40 of them, so it wasn’t much, though that time it felt pretty bad.

      I’ve always loved designs we have with the ready-made themes, and my earlier one was on Genesis with the roses in the background if you remember. I fell for it when I put it up and thought it was very different from the ones I usually visited. But if you want to become a real professional blogger you need to keep such fancy things aside because they do add to the speed and load time of the blog, and that’s why I switched again to the one I have now. So, I think all of this is part of learning – isn’t it?

      You’re absolutely right! You need to know the right and wrong ways to do things, and even if it takes time to learn them, be sure of them. I learnt most of it while visiting various blogs, though I was blogging right through because the more you write, the better you become. So, you keep learning to become a better blogger, and a better writer too. Ah…you certainly deserved the mention – there was no one I could think of better than you when such tech things come to my mind 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your words of wisdom with us, which are bound to help any blogger. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  15. Liju Philip

    July 21, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    Congrats on the 150th post. Looking forward to many more. Cheers and keep up the great work.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:22 pm

      Hi Liju – good to have you back after long 🙂

      Thanks so much for your kind wishes. And yes, there would be many more coming up, along with a lot more new changes around too. So, be around 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  16. Ahsan

    July 21, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    At first, I congratulate you on 150th post. Its a remarkable achievement. You already shared some of your blogging experience. Every blogger face some obstacles at the beginning. If he conquer that, he can move forward.

    I am already fan of your blog. Hope you continue your successful blogging journey 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:30 pm

      Hi Ahsan,

      Thank you for your wishes, and yes indeed – it does feel good to have come this far 🙂

      Absolutely! Every blogger’s journey is different and I don’t think anyone’s had it smooth enough because we’ve all mostly learnt many things and come this far. But if we can all share our blogging tips here, it might help someone create their own blog if they wish to, or learn something from our experiences – isn’t it? Ah…thanks for saying that and it’s so nice of you to always visit my blog and comment here – I appreciate that 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  17. Susan Neal

    July 22, 2013 at 2:11 am

    Great advice, Harleena – I agree with all the points you make here.

    Regarding the domain name, I think it’s best to hold out for a dot.com – it’s usually possible to find something snazzy if you give it a lot of thought and brainstorm different ideas, perhaps with the help of a thesaurus. I love trying to find great domain names – it’s a great challenge, I’d almost do it for sport!

    You’re right to advise people to get a premium theme – but even so, I’d suggest people need to do a lot of research to make sure they get the right one. I wasted a lot of money on a Genesis theme that I just couldn’t manage to customize – although it was marketed as being newbie-friendly, I discovered you actually needed to do a fair bit of coding to get it looking the way you wanted. I abandoned it in the end – I chose my current theme, Flexsqueeze, because it really is push-button easy – very simple to customize, without doing any coding at all.

    I think it’s the technical stuff I’ve struggled with the most, and I think people starting out need to be prepared to have to learn some new skills – and maybe outsource some stuff they’re not able to do for themselves.

    This is an excellent post for anyone starting out, Harleena – you’ve given a really clear outline of some of the key decisions to be made at the outset.

    Sue

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 12:55 pm

      Hi Sue,

      Glad you liked this series on blogging tips starting with this one to create your own blog 🙂

      That’s a very good point and thanks for bringing it up. There was a time when people used to say that dot.net or many others that are coming are alright too, and though some of our friends have got those also, does it really affect the ranking? I wonder. I was almost about to go in for one such myself because of the perks they offer, but I’m glad I didn’t. I agree with you that you DO need to literally brainstorm and come up with an apt domain name too. We sat over it for almost a week before we finalized on Aha!NOW, mainly for its meaning and what we wanted people to feel when they visit and read the posts 🙂

      Yes indeed, purchasing the right theme is important and sadly there are so many types of themes and as many opinions of people regarding them too that it often confuses us, so I pity the newcomers there. Once I switched to WordPress, I was on Genesis too, and like you, it confused me a great deal as well. Somehow I managed to add a few codes and did things with it, but it wasn’t just the kind I wanted or I wasn’t able to customize it too because of the lack of knowledge perhaps on the technicalities of things. Ah..like you, I also switched over to my present one because it was mobile friendly, and much easier than Genesis and it does have a good customer support too being a rather new one. People talk a lot about Thesis, and my writing blog’s on that, but I just managed to do very little with it as it does require you to know a little of the coding too, though I think there are tutorials and people to guide you if you want that. But these two are supposed to be good for ranking well, though I feel it’s all about the content you share that really matters at the end of the day – isn’t it?

      Like you, I’m rather nil where technical issues are concerned, and had it not been for my tech buddies – I really don’t know where I’d be. Yes, those who find this area tough, should outsource such things, if they can afford to, or else learn about it through your friends, or then choose a theme that you know is easy for you to handle initially, and later perhaps switch to themes that are a little complicated, even though they are better optimized and SEO friendly.

      Thanks for stopping by – and I appreciate you sharing your pearls of wisdom with all of us, which added so much more to the post 🙂

  18. Carolyn

    July 22, 2013 at 2:22 am

    Congratulations, Harleena! I am so happy for you reaching this important milestone. So many of our comrades have fallen by the wayside, but you keep publishing your helpful and thorough articles.

    I am also so happy you are expanding your categories to include blogging. I know you will have very useful and inspirational advice here for us!

    All of your tips are spot on, Harleena. I agree with all of them and love your quotes. I would add two pieces of advice: within a niche, figure out how you can help people. You don’t have to be first, but try for being the best. If you can help people, they will come back.

    My second piece of advice is to find blogs you admire (such as this one!) and see how they are done. What is their publishing schedule, writing style, topic coverage, etc. What makes them special? See how you can accomplish that yourself.

    Triberr is a great way to start. You can find lots of quality blogs there and make connections with other bloggers.

    Happy 150th!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 1:49 pm

      Hi Carolyn,

      Thank you so much for your warm wishes 🙂

      Ah…look who’s talking! I’ve always looked up to you and so many others, who are so-so consistent with their informative posts, which just makes me wonder as to how you do it all! You post much more often than me and all your posts are helpful ones too, at least they are for me as I am totally clueless where tech things or the latest gadgets or gizmos are concerned, and you make it all so simple for us to understand, which is the most important thing 🙂

      It has been on my mind since long, and when people started asking me about how I do it, I just thought it might be another way to help new bloggers and others too who need help with blogging. I know I am no expert, but if I can help in my own little way, and have other experts also come in and advise people, I’m sure it would make things so much easier for them. I remember my time when I started blogging, and was totally new to the online world, with no idea what a blog was! So, all those thoughts made me take this decision, but again, with the sole aim of helping those who need a little guidance on blogging.

      Ah…you know I can never do without quotes, and even though they take time to hunt, just like the images, I think they give me happiness more than anything else, and perhaps add a little to the post too. Your advice is spot on I’d say for any new or seasoned blogger, because that does work. Anything to help others will bring them back asking for more, and that’s just what I intend doing, and perhaps I’d also sharpen my blogging skills now because I know I need to learn a lot more and share it with others. So, there’s always good in everything – isn’t it?

      That’s a great additional point too, Carolyn! To find blogs that you like or would like to follow, not just this one (thanks for saying that!) but any from your niche if you wish, though have your own voice and style. Why I say this is because sometimes those who can’t, also try to copy your writing style and often land up in trouble because they’re not being their real selves. But yes, try to get better with time and develop your own unique style that will make you different from the rest. I agree with the publishing schedule, topics covered, and what they are doing differently, or how you can become better than them. I think most newbies are already good at all of this, and are much better equipped as compared to what we were, when we started off – isn’t it?

      Oh yes…Triberr is awesome indeed, and thanks for putting me onto it too! I did have a little tough time initially, but it all fell into place with time. I think it’s a great place to make new friends and read each others posts, besides getting so many different post ideas too.

      Thanks so much for stopping by and adding so much more to the post. This is exactly what I was wanting from blogging experts like you, to share your experiences and knowledge with those who might need help with it. 🙂

  19. Benojir

    July 22, 2013 at 2:35 am

    Hello,

    I just would like to say a few words about your one suggestion “Choose a domain name that is short, easy to remember, relevant to your niche and in accordance to Google’s suggestions.”

    So what about your blog name aha-now?

    Thanks.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      Welcome to the blog, Benojir!

      That’s a good question. In fact, I did answer a similar question in one of my interviews.

      Well, when I chose my blog name, I wasn’t aware of what I should be doing. I didn’t know that a domain name could matter to your blog, hence I chose a name that came to my mind, though after a lot of discussion because I wanted people to have their Aha moment when they visited my blog. I never had any idea about how and why we need to choose differently, so just chose this one – just like how the name “Google” came into existence. 🙂

      But I’m glad it’s doing well for itself and is now recognized by it’s unique name 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and hope you enjoyed your time on the blog. See you around. 🙂

      • Benojir

        July 23, 2013 at 3:11 pm

        Thanks Singh for your reply. I made such a mistake when I started a blog without knowing much about blog’s fundamental requirements when it comes to Search Engine.

        Yes, your blog is doing really well.

        Best Wishes,
        Benojir

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          July 23, 2013 at 6:37 pm

          You’re not alone there Benjoir because most of us commit the same mistake when we are new, and things can often go wrong if we aren’t careful about learning how to go about things the way they are supposed to be done.

          Thanks once again 🙂

  20. Christy Garrett

    July 22, 2013 at 7:41 am

    When I first started blogging, I picked a niche that was too focused. I decided to expand my niche after I decided to blog full time.

    Once you start writing, you need to market and share your work. This is a huge step that most newbies forget to do. The content isn’t going to share itself, unless, you get lucky and rank for something accidentally and it is controversial and strikes an audience.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 2:02 pm

      Hi Christy,

      You blogging journey seems to be similar to mine when I started blogging as mine too was focused initially on one or two niches, and it was later that I expanded and added more niches.

      Absolutely! Just blogging is not enough because no one really knows you when you are a newbie. You need to reach out, connect, visit other blogs and build relationships with other fellow bloggers. That’s the only way they will know you exist in the Blogosphere and would visit your blog too. This was another part of blogging tips I’d be covering a little later, though thanks for mentioning it here too.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post by sharing your tips with. 🙂

  21. Jupiter Jim

    July 22, 2013 at 8:14 am

    Harleena, congrats on blog post #150.

    Yes, it is quite an accomplishment. One of the hardest things about succeeding in the world of blogging is having the tenacity and persistence to know that you’ve got some great information to share and sticking with it till you start getting some visitors and commentators. And you’ve done that and should be proud.

    Anybody who has blogged for any length of time knows that EVERY blogger gets discouraged at times, sometimes many times as the months and years roll on. Writing about blogging and your personal experiences and how we can share that with each other on your blog is a great idea! This is definitely something different. Most people (like myself) are doing blogs that show how to “do this” and “how to do that”, but not really talking about the personal experience of blogging itself.

    As for niches, like you said, pick a narrow one. As for themes, like you said, pick Thesis or Genesis if you can. And if you are serious about being around a year from now, then start with a self-hosted WordPress website, not Google blogger or the free WordPress.com!

    Thanks for this and all your great posts, Harleena!~ Jupiter Jim

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm

      Hi Jim, nice to have you back after long 🙂

      Thank you so much for your kind wishes, and yes, although it’s an accomplishment, I know there’s a lot more that needs to be done.

      Absolutely! Every blogger needs to learn the lesson of patience I’d say and remind themselves that Rome wasn’t built in a day! Things take time, and if you are consistent and dedicated with your posts and in your work, you will start getting visitors and comments too.

      It didn’t take me long to get mine, but I was consistent and patient I’d add, which is the key. Yes, I do feel proud that I’ve now a wonderful community of friends who are regular visitors of the blog, for which you need to build and maintain the connections and relationships you make along the way – isn’t it?

      I agree with you there – the roller coaster rides sometimes get the better of us, and sometimes you just feel like quitting or don’t feel like blogging. But what matters most is that you remain determined and make a commitment to yourself, more than to your readers. And if you are able to do that – there’s nothing to stop you from blogging regularly.

      I think that when we share our personal experiences, because we’ve been blogging for a few years now, we can help the new bloggers and others in more ways than one. Your blog is a great source of information for any blogger, because through your posts and videos you too are helping them and I think all of us do add our personal touch to whatever we share on our blogs – isn’t it?

      Yes indeed, if you are sure you’re going to be a blogger, you should purchase a self-hosted WP theme and not go in for the free ones, though some of my friends are still doing wonderfully well on the Blogger platform. I guess it’s their own personal choice, but if you want to go a step further, this is the answer.

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post 🙂

  22. Andrea H.

    July 22, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    Well, 150 posts is a good milestone, especially for someone who usually writes evergreen content much longer than the basic 300 words. I’m near 100 btw. 🙂

    These days the net is full of experts teaching everything but a kind of insider look to what really blogging is about I think can be useful for a lot of people. Newbies or not.

    By my experience given how Google behaves these days I would add to completely forget about it because for any reason the traffic it sends can disappear overnight so writing follwing its diktats can be worthless. Much better to focus on other traffic sources, much more reliable in the long run.

    If Google catches you fine but if it doesn’t forget about it. Also behaving this way sooner or later they’ll be good just to sell glasses, maybe.

    Good post also. Have a fabulous day!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 8:04 pm

      Hi Andrea – nice to have you back 🙂

      Ah…thanks so much for your kind words, but don’t worry, even your 100 posts would surely cross over faster than you can imagine. 🙂

      I agree with you there, the Internet IS full of blogging tips and advice on how to create your own blog and all that follows thereafter. But when we have people talk of their own blogging journey and what they went through, or if you have blogging friends share their views on it, I think you get to learn a lot more because that is all their personal journey so you know for sure what really worked for them and what didn’t, which helps you take wiser decision.

      Yes indeed, we shouldn’t really bother much about Google or the ranking etc because they keep changing so often. It’s much better to build your community of friends and readers who would always be there for you. Once you do that, you really don’t get all that affected by the updates.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post 🙂

  23. I. C. Daniel

    July 22, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    “With the lack of details, tips, and ways of blogging…” and “there are not many mentors to guide you” – is not true when you talk about guide to blogging.

    There are plenty of tutorials on how to start blogging on internet Harleena, thousands of them you’ll find if you search on Google, really no joke and you know I’m right.

    As well many succesful bloggers also called probloggers are guiding newbies into blogging journey without charging too much or even $0 because of affiliate earnings already coming from purchasing online products like hosting for example which is a must have.

    Hope you don’t mind my opinion, if so you can delete this comment, is your home here, you can do as you wish.

    Nice to read you, Best regards from I. C. Daniel

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 8:11 pm

      Hi Daniel, good to have you back after a long time 🙂

      No doubt you’re right that there are plenty of tutorials and articles about blogging on the Internet. Thanks for pointing out that, or may be I should have framed my sentence differently to clearly express myself.

      I wanted to emphasize on the lack of accounts of personal experiences of bloggers, about what and how they did, including their mistakes, failures, and success too. For a newbie, it becomes difficult to choose and believe in the right information, even though the net is flooded with information, but sometimes this too becomes tough to assimilate.

      It helps if you’ve a mentor. But I observed many bloggers commenting on this post itself that they faced problems inspite of the availability of information or lack of mentors that not everyone can easily find, and really felt that had a mentor been there, things would’ve been easy for them.

      You’re right, there are many successful bloggers and probloggers who try to help newbies free of charge – many of them genuine ones too. But then you’ve to make sure they’re not biased or promoting a particular product just because of their vested interests. Also, as a newbie you need to know who to trust and follow, because developing trust in someone takes time – isn’t it?

      You’re free to express your opinion here on Aha!NOW, that’s what it is – a platform for discussion and expression of views, so consider this as your home too! 🙂

      Thanks for taking the time to carefully read the post and contribute your valuable views. 🙂

      • I. C. Daniel

        July 24, 2013 at 12:24 am

        I plan my very own blog for a while and some of my online friends including you got a bit passed for attention, even you deserve it, I have a lot of work and so little time till solve my problems I’m afraid I can’t be always to share my opinion, however I’ll be more active as soon I finish my blog.

        PS: Why you delete my backlink? Does it harm your website? If so how?

        Best regards from I. C. Daniel

  24. Obasi Miracle

    July 22, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    Thanks for this brilliant tips Harleena Singh, I got to know your blog via the recent interview you did at BSG, I have really learn a lot since I started visiting your blog being a person that also own a tech blog I must say that your efforts to helping us improve is very much appreciated.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      Welcome to the blog Obasi!

      Yes indeed, it was nice to meet you at Joseph’s blog at the interview too 🙂

      Thank so much for stopping by, and for your kind words of appreciation. If there is anything I can help you with, please don’t hesitate to ask. 🙂

  25. Adesanmi Adedotun

    July 22, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    Blogging is the second largest community on the planet earth after the internet, making a head way in blog-o-sphere really need a re-think, I mean deep one! Blog niche is very best I will consider in blogging community first that must be rightly chosen else such blogger many not at the end succeed. I don’t really place more priority on domain name but atimes it works and the reason why I said this is just because of the blog content. Ability to put in place a quality blog content can pave a way forward in the community and I so much believe in blogging potential when it comes to writing skills. Great share!!!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 8:55 pm

      Welcome to the blog Adesanmi!

      Absolutely! You need to be very sure that blogging is something you want to do, and also what kind of a blogger would you like to be.

      If you want to blog as a hobby or pastime to share your thoughts and feelings, there is nothing much you need to do, and you can just create your own blog on a free Blogger’s platform and start blogging. But if you want to take blogging seriously, earn from it, or make it your profession, you need to think differently and follow the rules.

      I agree with you there, if your niche isn’t clear, you’d really not know which direction to take your blog to. Yes indeed, sometimes domain names that aren’t the normal kinds with keywords used in them do just as well, and I think Google is one such example, and many others too because of the quality content they share, which makes a difference.

      It is actually your ability, writing skills, reach, connectivity, social presence, and writing posts that are of value besides other factors, which matters more than anything else. So, if you concentrate on these points, you’d do well. 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  26. Thundey Harwall

    July 22, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    Great you now included blogging tips category to your blog – this will be an outstanding, after reading to the last paragraph all I could think is that “I wish I’ve known this long before I created my blog – any way this will still help a lots”. but I have some questions?

    What do you see to starting a blogging with free platform? good or bad?
    Do I have to choose a specific Niche or just sharing what I know?

    Am a Tech Blogger and I do share blogging tips, I can see now that you’ve added blogging tips to your category, does this make your blog multi-niche? can you explain how bad is it to start with multi-niche-blog?

    hoping to hear from you soon

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 23, 2013 at 9:09 pm

      Welcome to the blog Thundey – good to see you here!

      Yes indeed, adding a blogging category was on my mind since a long time as I keep getting a lot of messages from people asking me about blogging. And if we can all share our experiences and knowledge with each other, things would become so much easier for new bloggers or those who need help with blogging – that was the sole aim of starting this niche, to help others in the best possible way. 🙂

      To answer your questions, let me try and answer them to the best of my knowledge.

      Starting blogging from a free platform is not bad, even I’ve done that. But then I had to go through a tedious and challenging blog migration process. Of course, it could’ve been better if I had taken professional help to do so, or if I were not such a novice in technical aspects. But as Jim pointed out in one of the comments earlier on this post, if you intend to be in the blogosphere for more than a year, then you should go for a self-hosted blog.

      As I mentioned in the earlier comment, if you are blogging just for the sake of sharing something with others or as a hobby, a free blog is absolutely fine, or you can even open one for trying your hand to see if you it’s something you like doing, before switching to a paid one, which is certainly more professional.

      Even if I had my blog hosted on Blogger, it would’ve helped me if I had it pointed towards my personal domain name, so there’s no change of domain involved if ever I want to change my blog platform or web hosting.

      It’s any day better to choose a specific niche relating to what you know. Mine is what you can call a multi-niche blog, as there are more than one topic though I started one category one at a time and kept adding them gradually, so it worked for me. Even though some of them are even unrelated entirely, I keep interlinking them, which again depends on the way you weave your posts.

      Of course, it’s a risk to go that way of you aren’t ready or haven’t planned out the path you want to tread, and more so if you want to start from scratch being a multi-niche blog. The major problem is that you don’t develop authority and expertise, and it becomes tough at times to balance your niches – however, it’s okay if all the niches are interrelated like blogging, money making, internet, social media etc.

      I hope this helped 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, and I’m glad you raised these questions that would help others facing similar problems too. 🙂

  27. Bashir Ahmed

    July 22, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Congrats on 150th blog post. Really wonderful post about create your own blog for those who don’t know the basics even for those who have not planned anything and just started blogging.

    Nice is the 1st and most important part you need to decide before starting creating a blog. Niche is all about your interest and knowledge.

    Domain name and hosting is on 2nd place here. Yes choosing the right domain name and good web hosting company is not an easy task. You can get the suggestions from other bloggers, you can search on Google about hosting reviews. Do your proper research before choosing domain name and hosting.

    Blog platform? There is no choice. I’d recommend only WordPress for your self-hosted blog. There are many Free plugins and themes you can use on your WordPress blog.

    Design your blog with cool graphics, easy to read text, colors, user and search engine friendly interface. Here again I’d recommend premium WordPress themes with full time support, in free themes you’ll not get any support.

    Thanks Harleena for sharing wonderful post – Keep up the good work!

    Have a nice day! 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 2, 2013 at 11:12 pm

      Hi Bashir,

      Thank you for your kind wishes 🙂

      I agree with you there, and that was the intention of starting off with a blogging category too at Aha!NOW as I was getting a lot of messages and inquires as to how I created mine and how’s and what’s about blogging. I do hope this category helps new bloggers, and the others too who are finding their way about to become better.

      Choosing the right niche is where many people go wrong only to realize it later, and then they either open a new blog or close the one they open. Proper planning and taking the appropriate action can solve this problem for them. I agree, your interest, passion, and your knowledge about things should be considered foremost.

      Nowadays with so many domain names and hosting services around it does become tough to choose the right one for your niche. It should suit your requirements more than anything else, and as you rightly mentioned, you need to research it well before taking any step.

      Yes, WordPress is the ideal choice and now more and more people are choosing it over the others. But I do have a few friends who prefer Bloggers still, and their sites also rank well on it. I guess it depends on your own personal choice about it, though if you really want to grow professionally, WordPress is the answer.

      I agree, the premium ones are any day better than the free ones because of the support, though before going in for one, they too must be researched well enough because some premium themes don’t have a good support.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your expert tips and views with us, which any blogger would love to go through. 🙂

  28. Theodore Nwangene

    July 22, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    You’re really a survivor Leena,
    And, congrats on your 150th posts, wishing you more 150 posts ahead :).

    You see, having a good mentor while starting anything is really the best because, it will take you there faster than someone that does not have one.

    I also started blogging the hard and Do it yourself way and, i wished i had a good mentor then, it would have been very easier for me but, i still thank God for everything though at least, I’m here now.

    One thing i will do differently if I’m to start all over again is to build relationships and connect with like minded bloggers early enough because, thats really one of the things that will make you a successful blogger.

    Thanks a lot for sharing this with us and, this is wishing us all a successful blogging :).

    Have a fabulous week my lady :).

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 2, 2013 at 11:34 pm

      Hi Theodore,

      Ah…so far so good – a survivor alright, and thanks for your kind wishes 🙂

      I agree with you there, and I wish new bloggers could easily find mentors, which only happens if you have a few blogging known friends online before you join, or someone to guide you around in the Blogosphere. Otherwise, for people like me, who were totally raw I’d say, it isn’t easy when you don’t know the simple basics of what a blog is – how’d you ever find a mentor!

      Things are much easier now as so many blogs have opened up as compared to a few years back when there weren’t many, and more people take to blogging after seeing their friends who are online too, so they aren’t totally new to it all. I guess we all have our learning experiences, don’t we? That’s how we learned and reached where we are today.

      Absolutely! Connecting with like minded bloggers, making connection, interacting, socializing – that’s what forms the base of blogging. More so, you get to learn so much from each other, again, which I also learnt after a few months of blogging, once people started visiting my blog.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your opinion with us, which would surely guide other bloggers. 🙂

  29. Peter

    July 22, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    Congrats on your 150th post Harleena,
    Its really not an easy task at all as we all are always facing those blogging road blocks 🙂 but, I’m happy you’re still here and improving everyday.

    Yes, having a mentor while starting your blogging journey is really golden but unfortunately, most of us never had one and we did everything on our own but, thank God because, we might not have known the things we know now if someone had done everything for us.

    Thanks a lot for sharing.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 2, 2013 at 11:42 pm

      Hi Peter,

      Thanks for your kind wishes 🙂

      Oh yes…blogging is not easy at all and that’s a misconception people have most of the time I’d say. But we do carry on and learn along the way, which makes it all the more interesting – isn’t it?

      I agree with you there, and that’s exactly what I was telling Theodore – we did it all on our own and right from scratch, and where we are today, I’d say is due to our hard work and dedication. And as you rightly mentioned, the lessons learnt along the way are the ones we would never forget as we were self-taught. But yes, for those bloggers who can find mentors, the journey becomes a lot more smoother I’d say.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post 🙂

  30. Anne

    July 22, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    Congrats on your 150th post, Harleena!

    If I had to start over, I’d definitely not go with the free blogging platform (Blogger) my older blogs are on. Also, I’d go with fewer topics and stick to one little niche – or even a micro niche. They perform a lot better.

    Oh, and I would learn to market better. At first I waited for readers to come to me and did almost no marketing whatsoever.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 2, 2013 at 11:52 pm

      Hi Anne,

      Thank you so much for your wishes 🙂

      I ditto your words because that’s exactly how I started too, though I was quick to switch over within a year onto WordPress, but that also happened only when I got to know why it should be WordPress and not Blogger.

      Ah…I agree to quite an extent about micro niches, but this is again a debateable topic and I might write about it soon one day here. I think if you can carry along a multiple-niche blog like this one, it’s good, or else a single one is the best. However, no one is always wanting to stick to just one niche and they tend to then open many other micro niches and find it tough to maintain so many over a period of time. Most of them start closing in thereafter, which isn’t right either. I’d say that if you want to open a multiple-niche blog, start the niches gradually, that is the key, and keep connecting one with the other, then it works well – it has for me (touch wood!)

      I too wish I knew how to do that, but when you create your own blog or are new, you hardly know all these things, which you come to learn much later. Marketing and promoting your blog is essential nowadays, at least initally, till people get to know about your blog.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your pearls of wisdom with us. 🙂

  31. Branko Zecevic

    July 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Thanks for the post Harleena!

    Very nice guide for a new blogger! The most important part is being consistent in your blogging! Don’t focus on money first, focus on building great content through planning! Also social media is an important part! Like you, I’m learning while doing it! 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 3, 2013 at 12:00 am

      Welcome to the blog Branko!

      Glad you liked the post on how to create your own blog 🙂

      Absolutely! Creating a blog is easy, but maintaining or updating it regularly is what matters most, and if you are able to do that – count yourself in the list of successful bloggers!

      I agree with you there, focus on your blog and what you write, the money will come later on it’s own, and even if it doesn’t, at least you are treading your path in the right direction, which matters most. Social media is important and this again is something new bloggers often fail to learn – share and show you care is the key I’d say. I do wish people learn from this post and from all the wonderful suggestions all of you are leaving for them.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  32. Sylviane Nuccio

    July 22, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    First off Congratulations on your 150th post. Sure a mile stone here.

    I’ve just celebrated 100th post on two of my blogs, but 150 is impressive 🙂

    You’ve given great tips here, and I certainly like the one about having a short domain name. For example, the name of my personal development blog is long, because back then I had created a Squidoo lense titled “Understanding Your Subconscious Mind” and it ranked very high.

    Back then I was told to create my own blog with this same name/title, which I did. That’s how it all happened.

    Looking back, while I still like the name, if I had to do it all over again I would choose a much shorter name. So, your advice to use a short domain is a very good one.

    Thank you for all those great blogging tips.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 3, 2013 at 6:06 pm

      Hi Sylviane,

      Thanks for your kind wishes, and yes, you too will reach this score in no time at your blogs and go much beyond 🙂

      A short domain name is certainly easier to remember for people, in case they want to share it with others, though not necessarily. Like yours, we all remember now because we’ve got used to it, though initially it was a little tough. However, your domain name is certainly a targeted one and a good one that you don’t or shouldn’t change at all.

      Yes, perhaps if you had given it more thought or asked for more suggestions from people, then a shorter name would’ve been ideal, but that is when you started off. Now, people already know you by this name and I think it’s picked up very well.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  33. Vishnu

    July 22, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    Hi Harleena – congrats also on your latest post and for your successful blogging journey. Hoping to learn more from you about these posts of your blogging journey to help guide and direct me on mine:)

    I think figuring out the niche is one of the hardest part of the blogging experience because we each have many experiences, interests which we want to write about. I think one thing that I did for my personal development/spirituality blog was to write a few articles first (I demanded about 15 of myself) before I launched the blog. i wanted to see if I had the interest to keep going and writing 15 articles gave me the ability to see if I did or not. Also, solving problems and figuring out your strengths, as you mention, are also a couple other solid ways to figure out the niche.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 5, 2013 at 1:59 pm

      Hi Vishnu,

      Thanks for your kind wishes 🙂

      Absolutely! I intend to write much more in this series in the coming few months with an intention of helping new bloggers and others who might need a little help in finding their way around. I remember the time I had, and it surely wasn’t easy for me!

      Yes that’s so true! I guess you do start with one niche but realize along the way that you can write a lot more about many more things. That’s just how it happened with me, and the way this blog turned out. However, I was very careful to take one step at a time and introduced the niches carefully, or else it might not have been possible.

      That was a wise move I’d say, though I just had 1-2 ready when i started my journey on Blogger’s, but I really didn’t know what was the right way or what was wrong – I just kept writing what came to my mind. 🙂

      But this is important and as Mitch mentions a little later in the comments, by doing this a new blogger can know whether he or she is really interested in blogging, before going in for a paid WordPress platform, which I feel is very essential because some people just give up so soon and feel it’s not their cup of tea as soon as they start off.

      Thanks for stopping by and adding yours expereinces to the post that are bound to help other bloggers. 🙂

  34. Brad Castro

    July 22, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Happy 150th, Harleena!

    I’ve only recently discovered your blog but have quickly come to value it. And I echo everyone’s sentiments – looking forward to following the new tips section.

    Coming from a background of static html niche sites, it’s interesting to see that a lot similar advice applies to both both blogs and websites alike.

    I’m already aware that I’m breaking one of the most important rules with my 41 day old blog (how’s that for a milestone?) – which is to focus on a narrow niche, and one that’s easily monetized (OK, maybe I’m breaking two rules).

    But I’ve already done the whole e-commerce thing for more than 5 years now at the expense of putting a lot of my own creative endeavors and expression on the back burner.

    So while I am planning on monetizing the blog down the line, I feel like I have the luxury of taking a more artistic license because I already have other online sources of income.

    Don’t get me wrong – I’d love to make a ton of money with the blog, but at this point, it’s not the primary concern.

    But when it does come to making money online, my own advice, coming from a non-blog perspective, would be to view your blog as an extension of your business (which would be the products and services you offer) and not the business itself.

    The blog (or the website) is just the vehicle – if your goal is to make a living online, what you should never lose sight of is that your central role is to identify and solve people’s problems, and to communicate to them the transformation that implies.

    Whether that happens in a blog post, a sales page, over the phone, or face to face is beside the point.

    It’s all about the transformation.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      August 5, 2013 at 12:01 pm

      Hi Brad,

      Thanks for your wishes and sorry that my reply comes off late.

      I’m glad that you like the blog and I’m sure you’re going to love the future posts on this section.

      I agree that the same advice goes for those websites whose function and nature is similar to that of niche blogs.

      You’ve done a lot in these about 60 or more days of your blog – I see more than half a dozen categories and plenty of posts. I wish that you go on at this or better pace.

      You’re not wrong when you say that a narrow niche is easy to monetize. And, it’s nice to see that you’re spirited enough to check if it works otherwise. Yes, you can take that liberty to be creative and do-your-own-thing with the blog than you could do with your e-commerce thing. So you feel a bit free, don’t you?

      You make one good point – that unless you’ve other sources of income, it’s a bit risky to experiment with the unconventional ways of blogging, as that might adversely affect your monetizing efforts.

      However, I understand your feeling and thoughts about your blog. I think it’s good that it makes you feel better and gives you an opportunity to unleash your creative self.

      That’s a great advice you give, however, I know many bloggers might not agree with it. For them, their blog is their business, and they don’t treat it as an extension of the business. Maybe that’s the core difference between websites and blogs.

      But you’re right, if you gotta think money, then your main focus needs to be on the products or services. The blog just remains a medium, just like a website or a phone, to connect to your potential clients and customers. Eventually, the mutually beneficial aim and end is the transformation.

      Thanks for your valuable suggestions from your rich knowledge and experience. I appreciate your contribution to this post.:)

  35. June

    July 22, 2013 at 10:18 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    The start of my blogging journey wasn’t easy. I was so excited to set up a blog that I didn’t do any research. I didn’t even know about niches. I chose my domain name because I liked the sound of it. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. I just wanted to write to inspire other women.

    I remember when I wrote my first post, I asked my sister to check it for me. She read it and asked me, “June who are you writing for?” I proudly replied, “Everyone, of course!” I can laugh now but looking back I can see how green I was. 🙂

    Anyway two years later, I’ve learnt a lot. But my blog is still not how it should be. I’m going to change it soon but I’m taking my time to plan it so that it will be useful to my readers.

    If I could start again, I would do my homework first and follow tips from experienced bloggers. This post is great for first time bloggers. It’s nice of you to share.

  36. Donna Merrill

    July 22, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    Harleena….Congratulations on your 150th post!

    Since I started following you I would have thought this would be your 350th because you are a pro blogger to me!

    When we first start blogging, it is so confusing. There are so many people out there telling you what to do. I was pretty lucky because I fell into good people who taught me well from the start.

    I admired their ethics and nature of the business. It was difficult to come up with a niche because I have so many interests, but doing what I do the best – helping people – became the core of my blog. Heck, I have been doing it for decades, so why not on line right?

    I was fortunate to have a good mentor that helped me get a blog designer that didn’t cost a fortune and has helped me along the way for years.

    But this is not the case for everyone. I have heard so many horror stories from bloggers when they first began.

    These tips surely help!

    -Donna

  37. Enstine Muki

    July 22, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Get this post into a report and sell on fiverr and micro business sites. I assure you it will sell. In my early days I didn’t have this kind of info.

    Thanks for linking to my article on this post 😉

  38. Adrienne

    July 23, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Hi Harleena,

    First off, congratulations on your 150th post. That’s quite an accomplishment.

    I was really surprised when I saw what this post was about but I love your explanation and I know for a fact that people who blog always love to learn about blogging. I know this is how a lot of people who blog about an entirely different niche get caught up in writing more about blogging. It’s something everyone wants to learn and when you learn something you want to help your readers by sharing the information. Unfortunately, the next thing you know they are’t writing about their niche anymore and are unhappy with the direction that their blog has taken.

    I’m sure whatever information you provide though, including what you shared here, will be extremely helpful for your readers. I also really appreciate you linking to my post as well. I hope that list of tips others will find helpful.

    I love this subject as you know so I can read and write about it all day long. I also know that your readers really trust you so anything you’re willing to share with them they’ll be more then grateful for.

    Have a wonderful week and I’m going to love this series. 🙂

    ~Adrienne

  39. John

    July 23, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Harleena, Your post was really informative. Many people who want to create their blog will find it useful.

  40. Mitch

    July 23, 2013 at 11:22 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Great tips!
    I actually did create a blog again from scratch, i had a personal blog for a few years. I stopped it, and then I recently started blogging for my business Web site.

    I am struggling still, it is harder to blog for a business, in a personal blog you can pretty much write about anything you want, now it is confusing whether i should write solely about my business or more.

    how would you do it ?
    Many thanks.

  41. Temilola Globalwalyy

    July 23, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    First of all let me congratulate you on your 150th post on Aha-now, you deserve a Big Thumb Up. But seriously my thought was you should be around 200+ post.

    I was surprised when i saw blogging tips on aha-now, and you even write an awesome blogging tips..

    Niche, domain name, blogging platform, awesome theme, and web host that’s if you are going for WP..

    Of course these are one of the most important part every newbie must look at before starting Blogging..

  42. Nwosu Desmond

    July 23, 2013 at 9:28 pm

    Your blogging mistake will start from the first step, that is choosing you niche. Most bloggers get it wrong here and once you miss this step then you are already on your way to failure.

    Blogging is a serious thing and as such you have to choose a niche you are an authority in, that way you can never run out of ideas and your blog will never go dry. Diving into a niche you know nothing about is not advisable, don’t get tempted into trying it because at the long run you will run into problems.

    I like the way you layed it down, it sounds so simple. In my first few months of blogging i learnt a lot and i still wished i read some of this posts then. But thank God i made it through to this point and i am still learning though because i have set my standard quite high.

    Thanks for sharing and i hope a lot of others like me will learn from it.

  43. Efoghor Joseph Ezie

    July 24, 2013 at 1:14 am

    Congratulations Harleena, on your 150th blog post here. It is not easy to achieve this milestone in such a short space of time. I am so happy for you.

    Thanks for dissecting this topic and for presenting it in such a simple manner that makes it easy for a newbie to understand. Your teaching skills is really great even though you do not see yourself as a great teacher.

    Harleena, mistakes are a part of every new system especially where there is nobody to mentor you. You are not the only one in this boat. A lot of the probloggers out there made their own mistake too at early stages of their blogging careers.

    I started as a blogger pretty much the same way you started. First,I was eager to make an impact in the blogging world, but came in as a “blogging virgin” (my special blogging term), and set out knowing only about a blog, Blogger platform, domain name and writing a post. SEO, backlinks, guest post, pinging, etc were all alien to me. But I just kept moving.

    I made a lot of mistakes along the line, made posts and submitted to several sites in the name of building backlinks and driving traffic. Then Blogger deleted 2 of my blogs after having several posts on them.

    I eventually got Business Success Guide on .blogspot.com in December 2011 and changed it to custom domain hosted with Blogger the following month. It got PR2 within 3 months. Then in December 2012 I moved it to WordPress because I didn’t want to face the same horrible experience I had in the hands of Blogger.

    Moving to WordPress did not affect my PR; I got PR3 in Feb 2013, two months after moving to WordPress. The biggest challenge I had after moving was dealing with my permalinks. All my posts were showing 404 errors even after using a permalink plugin. The custom permalinks I used in Blogger was causing the problem. I had to manually correct over 200 links which was quite exhaustive. I wasn’t discouraged.

    My advice for newbies?
    1. Follow Harleena Singh’s steps as listed in this post
    2. Don’t be in a hurry to diversify; this could make you easily lose focus.
    3. Go to WordPress from day 1 if you intend to use a custom domain, otherwise remain with Blogger. But don’t forget the fact that the Blogger could get mad any day they like and delete your blog for flimsy reasons like they did to me with my second blog they deleted.
    4. Follow the experts; don’t try to reinvent the wheel
    5. Explore the power of guest post and relationship building
    6. Make mistakes but correct them fast
    7. Don’t ever think of Blackhat SEO practices; it is the easiest way to fall apart with Google and be on your way to failure and oblivion.
    8. Deliver quality contents always; don’t pursue money first.
    9. Look around for what works and implement it on your blog
    10. learn! learn!! learn!!!

    I am sure these few tips would really help you if you pay heed to them. Wishing you the very best in your blogging career.

  44. Neamat Tawadrous

    July 24, 2013 at 1:44 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Congratulations on your 150th post. Wow, what a milestone.

    Great Tips and they are all spot on. I like how you are holding the hand of the newbie and explaining the basics of setting up a blog. I wish I found these tips when I started. They are very simple and easy to follow. I am sure every blogger will pick something useful no matter at what stage they are. I sure did.

    Thanks Harleena for a great informative post and I hope every business owner will set a goal of starting their blog today and I am sure they will find your tips very useful.

    I look forward to more blogging tips from you and have yourself a great week ahead.

    Be Blessed,

    Neamat

  45. Bren

    July 24, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Hi Harleena and congratulations! How’s if feel to get that 150th?

    This is an awesome post that I wish I would have read before I started blogging. I would have started out on self-hosted wordpress and bypassed Blogger, however then if I did, I would never have the knowledge of Blogger. Hmmm….So let me take that back. I wish I knew more about links, backlinks, and SEO before I started blogging. Then I would have deleted so many posts that are now giving me 404 errors. 🙂

  46. B K chowla

    July 24, 2013 at 11:10 am

    My best wishes on the 150th

  47. Sue Price

    July 24, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Hi Harleena

    First of all congratulations on your 150th post. It is a milestone for sure and you have a great following so well done.

    It seems we are both addressing a topic for new bloggers this week. I had so many people asking me questions I had to write about some basics as well.

    I love your post here and that you have addressed which platform and getting a domain name.

    I think choosing a niche can be difficult for people and sometimes I think a mentor is a good thing.

    I was fortunate enough to meet some people who guided me well in the beginning.

    Great advice Harleena.

    Sue

  48. Darlene Today

    July 24, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    I’ll second what Pramod says here.. but take it one step further.

    Stay on topic!

    Once you’ve chosen your niche/topic (and yes, you do need to narrow it down) then stick with it.

    Your readers are there because they think your blog is of interest to them. Don\’t disappoint by wandering all over the place deviating from the very topic that got their attention in the first place.

    Harleena you asked what we would do differently?

    I would follow the suggestion I just made here in my post.In the beginning I was so worried about losing someone as a reader that I tried to be too much. As a result I didn’t fine-tune and become really amazing at any one topic.. so pp weren’t compelled to stop and listen. Off they went to find a blog that was speaking to their specific situation.

    ~darlene

  49. Susan Velez

    July 25, 2013 at 3:38 am

    Great post,

    I found it very helpful, even though I have already set up blog. I have to remember not to blog about everything and keep it in the niche. I tend to wander sometimes, not only in my blog but in life. Thanks

  50. Ashley

    July 25, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Congrats on the 150. I am still miles away :>
    Nice summary post for a beginner blogger, we all needed that when we began but most of us did not find it!

  51. Gbenga aloba khuji

    July 25, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I am motivated by the simplicity of this post, its encouragement and advice.

    On the issue of sticking to a niche, I find it very hard, I am a fellow that loves teaching and showing people the stuffs and information that I know. I love sharing knowledge, from personal experience to core technology and internet related issues. So, basically, I tend to go the way of a multi general blog.

    Anywah, thanks for sharing.

  52. Srimanta

    July 26, 2013 at 12:18 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Informative articles for all new blogger. This post are very very useful for new blogger, those who want to set up a blog first time. Hope more new bloggers will read this article!

  53. muhammad yousuf

    July 26, 2013 at 1:07 am

    Harleena Singh, I am not able to take google ads.I am really worry about it.I did not copy any things but google do not allow me ads.I watched some site that was copy with google play and he have google ads. Why??? Waiting for reply.

  54. Shameem

    July 27, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    Hi Harleena great to hear your thoughts about blogging tips on your blog which i agree with your points choosing the niche is most important as you need to figure out in which you are familiar so you can be best on it and choosing the right webspace its very important because everything depends on it loading time etc enjoyed reading it

  55. Adnan Shahid

    July 28, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Dear sister Harleena. Good to read these blogging tips from your side. I have bookmarked this section to remain update each post that you will write for blogging. You taught very briefly and it will help many newbies and now they will create a blog very easily after reading this tutorial/article. Thanks for sharing such valuable word with us.

  56. Gilbert Samuel

    July 28, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I must say this; 150 post is really something big, even if you divide your blog post by 10 I don’t think if my own still beats the figure (new in the blogosphere).Thanks for the tips you mentioned, actually choosing a niche is the first thing to do but many bloggers make big mistakes by choosing niche that they know nothing about, thereby making them unsuccessful. I’ve been commenting on blogs and I do see you all over the web, I was so curious to know who you really are, and now, I’ve finally stumbled upon aha!now. I’m happy I learnt something.

    Keep up the good work, we need people like you 🙂

  57. Asaolu olubayode

    July 28, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    Waoo! It’s nice seeing you adding blogging tips amidst your pages. I was not surprised anyway because I know you have what it takes to carry people along, as you’ve always done. Just keep the good work going. Guess I just tweeted this now.

  58. prince

    July 30, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Nice post Harleena,

    I picked 3 major points from this post which is first choosing an appropriate domain name and niche. Choosing the right blogging platform is another important thing when it come’s to blogging most bloggers go for the wrong blogging platform and I was once also a victim of this.
    Thanks again for this informative post

  59. Siddhartha Sinha

    July 30, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    These 5 steps mentioned in the post is the crucial post and I think it is infact decider post i.e. what you want to do in Blogging and how could you do in blogging.

    Regards
    Siddhartha Sinha

  60. shafeeq

    July 31, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    I also started blogging the hard and Do it yourself way and, i wished i had a good mentor then, it would have been very easier for me but, i still thank God for everything though at least, I’m here now.

    One thing i will do differently if I’m to start all over again is to build relationships and connect with like minded bloggers early enough because, thats really one of the things that will make you a successful blogger.

    Thanks a lot for sharing this with us and, this is wishing us all a successful blogging

  61. Silviu

    August 2, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    1. “I know that most of you are already accomplished and professional bloggers who’ve gone through this initial phase in your blogging careers.”

    Well, I just want to ask you a question: Who do you wrote this post for?
    Accomplished and professional bloggers? Do they really need to know about these 5 steps? OK. Maybe you want to make your readers feel good.

    2. Finding your niche. WOW! This is the most important thing of all. It is the first step and if you are not doing it right, you will fail.

    As far as I can see, bloggers don’t tell to much about finding a niche. Strange but this seems to be the case. The most important step in your business is overlooked. Maybe this is the reason why we see so many failures.

    It seems so easy to choose a niche. In fact, most people just choose one. Later it proves wrong. Horrible. They have lost many months, sometimes years in the wrong direction.
    I think this problem is so important that it needs special posts, articles, ebooks, webinars and courses.

    Those who really want to help people must start exactly from here: turning people in the right direction, clearing the dense fog from their minds.

    Have a nice day

  62. Mitch Mitchell

    August 4, 2013 at 1:33 am

    First, congrats on #150; you’ll be closing in on me any time now. lol

    Second, good tips, but I always dispute your #4 whenever I see it. My take on this is that it makes no sense for new bloggers to buy a premium theme. Get used to the idea and the process of blogging first, see if you can last at least 3 to 6 months, then maybe think about it. Spending all kinds of money on a theme with the failure rate of bloggers makes no fiscal sense; see if you’re dedicated to the process, then think about it.

  63. Hafeezur Rahman

    August 6, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    Good write up Harleena, it will boost many new bloggers. The way you respond to viewers is more than what you wrote on this topic article. It is not an easy task to reply many viewers as response – good work.

  64. Siraj Wahid

    August 8, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    Awesome article, I also started with blogger but now i have swithed to wordpress and it’s outstanding.

  65. Gurwinder Singh Bhinder

    August 24, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Interesting and simple article to answer most of the blogging questions. This is a very helpful article especially for newbies. I loved the 5 ways you have highlighted to start a blog. Choosing a domain name along with choosing the niche is one of the most important tasks in the field of blogging. One should always select a niche that he/she like to learn and share about. Don’t run behind money instead run behind your passion and money would follow you automatically.

  66. Jitendra Vaswani

    September 16, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Thank you for such a great information Harleena.This is a great blueprint on how to get started blogging successfully. I will save this article and use it as a reference.

  67. Suresh Khanal

    September 29, 2013 at 6:01 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Super post once again as always from you.

    The exact match domain (EMD) attracted me to put some words so as to add more confusion 😀

    Google and search engines depend on keywords to check relevancy of a page against search query. According to where it looks for that calculation, different spots get different importance. SEs do look on page URL, page title, post title, headings, first paragraph, last paragraph and so on. In case of URL, the keywords in possible far left is better and the farthest is the domain name. It is much easier to rank when your domain name has targeted keyword.

    Though Google rolled out EMD algorithm, it just tried to swipe out the spam sites that used EMDs resulting valuable sites having exact match domain name got even better ranking. So, it is still not bad to look for EMD.

    Now, however, after the ‘hummingbird update’, don’t know how it will continue.

  68. Sajid Hussain

    September 30, 2013 at 11:54 pm

    Tremendous guides for beginners Harleena. Premium template for blog is good us because we can do lot of customization in comparison of free template.

    You are right, Genesis and Thesis are the best premium blog template providers. Thesis is very in this and it has very light weight template which makes blog’s speedy to load.

  69. Philip V Ariel

    November 23, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Yet another informative and educative post on blogging.

    I liked this, as far as i am concerned, as you said about the migration and lost of ranking and comments its very true that we lose many comments if we migrate one platform to the other i lost many comments almost all good and valuable comments in the process of knol migration from Google’s Knol pages to WordPress, of course i and some of the knol authors did preserved many of our knols with comments and saved it for further use but many i could not, I disagree with you of the writing at blogger and WordPress. LOL, i feel more comfortable with the blogger LOL

    Thanks Harleena, this post and few other links from your pages are mentioned in one of my existing post at blogger under the title “9 Tips to get….Thanks ones again for sharing this,

    Best Regards. Phil

  70. Atish Ranjan

    January 11, 2014 at 2:07 pm

    Today I noticed that you have a category “blogging” on aha now and I started reading. Please keep writing posts in this category as well. I loved the tips.

    For successful blogging we have to have a reliable web host first because when hosting creates issues, it seems everything is lost so stay on safer side use a reliable web host.

    Domain name plays an important role also.

    Overall, good guide. I loved the tips. Thanks for sharing Harleena.

  71. nikhil ganotra

    February 18, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    Hello Harleena maam,
    I really liked your blog special the “blogging” section and I’m mad about going through all its articles.Generally all newbies face problem while starting a blog. Even I have faced it too. But you provided the best guide for newbies helping them to start a blog. Thanks for sharing this effective guide.

    Have a great day maam. 🙂

  72. freddie

    April 30, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    Hello Harleena, how are you? You have a wonderful blog and i agree with you about focusing on the reader instead of creating a great looking blog.

  73. Rohit Singh

    June 22, 2014 at 4:46 am

    Hi,

    I would like to say one thing which I mostly focus on is providing great quality content because the first step to get your blog post viral starts from your content quality, If it’s good then you can extract more from your promotional strategies

    so one must focus on writing quality content for getting maximum traffic and learn some basic seo skill to get higher rankings in search engines also try to provide value to your readers and don’t just write for search engines if you content is great and appealing then can see some great success
    Cheers and keep posting such great content.

  74. Angyer Van

    September 16, 2014 at 5:23 am

    I don’t think buying a whatever domain can determine the success of your domain because the main functionalities of a good blog is the content and a solid relationship with the audience this two criteria will work wonders if you practice them. I love your blog and I must say keep the good work on.

  75. yousuf

    October 14, 2014 at 1:18 am

    I also believe that for the success of your blog not only content but domain hosting site also have value.

  76. Profile photo of Rahul Krishnan

    Rahul Krishnan

    January 29, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    Hi Mam,
    Awesome post indeed.
    Yeah, I too started blogging with the same misconception. We simply want a domain, blog and content for blogging.
    Niche selection is an important task on blogging. Sad to say I started my blog as a multi niche one.
    Domain selection is very much important. It must include a keyword related to our niche. But I chose a random one as I have a multi niche blog.
    Blogspot v/s WordPress is always a topic of debate. Anyway I prefer to start with blogspot. Then migrating to wordpress.
    I am a student and have no regular income. So can’t afford a premium theme. I know thare are many people like me. For everyone’s information, there are premium looking themes available for wordpress for free.
    Hosting also thing which needs money. I recently found out a quality rich as well as cheap host. So I became their customer.
    Thank you so much for the post Mam. This is a must need for everyone who wants to step their foot into blogging.
    Regards,
    Rahul

  77. mani

    March 14, 2015 at 1:25 am

    hi harleena… 🙂 i want say you something…. if you didn’t mind than i would say that after reading your reading article i am totally shocked because when i have read your article i realized that i am just waiting my time on blogging. i did’not know anything about the basics of blogging… now i know that how can create a blog with full of awesome features. i love your blogging skills and also love your article writing. i am speechless and don’t know how to say you thanks for sharing such an informative article with newbie…. 🙂 i’ll must say…. i salute you harleena and want to get personal contact for much more information… i’ll wait your reply…. best of luck and May GOD Bless you every time 🙂

  78. Profile photo of Rachel Wolany

    Rachel Wolany

    May 27, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Hey Harleena, I was reading your post, yep got this done, yep got that done. I got stumped when looking at my niche and did not realise I had been study self development for years and that’s the area I would feel most comfortable in. I really felt I was in a different category from everyone else. That’s right – I could not find a niche that I could place myself in, so therefore ‘I’ Rachel needed a niche entirely for myself. Sometimes I just need the information thrown in my face. I get this ‘I don’t know stuff’ fear and I get blinded. Your post did get me thinking, you have generously shared your knowledge with me and I have read other posts where you have done the same. I cant wait to get to a stage where I can share some of my knowledge and get people motivated the way you do. Great post Harleena.



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Blogging Tips: Basic Steps to Create Your Own Blog

by Harleena Singh time to read: 8 min