Blogging is a great way to make a living if you can build a big enough following but people often underestimate it hard it is. One of the biggest misconceptions that people have about blogging is that you can just start a blog for free and make loads of money out of it. So many people try to get into blogging because there’s nothing to lose, but that’s not true. You might be able to get a bit of a following without putting any money in but you won’t build a viable business without investing in it. Lots of bloggers get a big shock when they realize just how much it costs to set up and maintain a good site and it often lands them in trouble because they’re not prepared for it. If you’re planning on starting a blog because you think it’s a free way to make money, think again. If you still want to start your own blog and you’re prepared to put the cash in, these are the things that you’ll need to include in your budget.
You’ve probably got a computer already but it might not be good enough to use for blogging. You’ve got to remember that this is a business and you’ve got to treat it as such. That means your old computer isn’t going to cut it. Getting a decent computer will maximise efficiency and help you to get the most out of your blog. It’s always best to get a laptop so you can work on the move. One with a good amount of processing power will set you back around $400-$500. Don’t try to avoid it, you’ll regret it in the long run. Having a big screen is always a good idea so you can properly view your blog posts before putting them on the site.
When it comes to deciding between Windows and Mac, there is no right answer. They both have their pros and cons but overall, you’ll be able to run a successful blog on either platform. It all comes down to personal preference so just choose the operating system that you’re most comfortable.
If you’re serious about running a blog, you’re going to need high quality media content. Grainy photos that you’ve taken on your phone are going to make you look amateur and people are less likely to come back. Getting yourself good quality camera equipment can be expensive, but it’s vital. Some of the best cameras on the market range from $500 all the way up to thousands. You might think that you can get away with a decent phone camera but most of the time, you’re wrong. If you’re running a food blog or a craft blog, or anything else that requires good quality photos, you’ll need a good camera.
If you’re including any video on your blog then you need to consider the sound quality as well. The microphones that are built into cameras are usually pretty poor so you’ll have to invest in a separate microphone. If people can hear echoes and crackles all over your videos, they’ll switch off before the end.
The one cost that nobody can avoid is hosting. It’s true that you can set up a free Blogger or WordPress site but you won’t have your own domain name. Nobody will take you seriously without one and you’re also putting yourself at risk. If you don’t have your own domain name and those sites close down, all of the content on there is lost forever. There are lots of different WordPress hosting providers out there and they all offer a slightly different package. Hosting costs are the most important outlay for bloggers, but fortunately, they’re also the cheapest. It should only cost you around $10 a year to host your site so there’s no reason not to do it.
If you want to make yourself more professional, consider paying a little more for a package that includes your own custom email address as well. It looks better than just using a Gmail or a Hotmail account that anybody can set up for free. When you’re trying to find affiliates for your site, they’re more likely to respond to a custom email address.
Some of the most expensive packages offer email marketing services which can really help you to boost your site and get more followers. If you’re trying to make a full time living out of your site, you should invest in marketing.
Starting a blog is just like any other business, you need to put some cash in upfront if you’re ever going to start earning from it.