I have been able to earn an income from blogging (I know bloggers who earn more than £10k PER MONTH!) and writing my book has genuinely changed my life.
Hopefully, those of you that find yourselves at home, or unfortunately out of work or just simply have a skill you want to share, or reach a wider audience – can make a start setting up your blog.
Disclosure: I may get a small commission for some of the items you see here – at no extra cost to you.
Click here to start a blog on WordPress and follow my simple 6 step guide below!
Create a blog in 6 simple steps
- Choose the topic that you want your blog to be about.
- Choose a blogging platform
- Pick a web host
- How to Set up a blog with your own domain
- Design your blog
- Get blogging and promote your blog
If you follow these steps, you will have a blog in less than 30mins!
COVID 19 hits, countries are closing their borders left right and centre and my pilot roster is getting smashed with unpaid leave. How am I going to pay my bills?
At the same time, most airlines were starting a redundancy consultation process and as a relatively junior pilot, my position was not safe at all.
Worried about my income, I started a blog, and aside from the income, it gave me something to do each day. Being in lockdown, the positive fulfillment I got from blogging really helped my mental state.
I felt like I was starting to have more control over my life (rather than just waiting for the next news report or forecast talking about how we would all be made redundant).
Why should you start a blog?
- A blog can help you reach out and connect with others. It has definitely helped my mental health
- You may have a skill you want to share or story to tell
- Simply for the enjoyment of writing
- If you choose to, you can earn money from your blog or sell products through your blog such as my book – once you monetize your blog!
Hopefully like many others, you will find the process really enjoyable.
The truth is I am new to blogging, and even with no experience at all before hand, I was able to create a blog and get going in less than an hour. Feel free to check out my first blog post how to become a pilot without mortgaging your house!
When I was researching how to start a blog (I have a habit of over researching things!), one of the consistent feedback that I got was to go for a WordPress blog.
Step 1: Choose the topic you want your blog to be about
Find a topic or an area that you are passionate about, knowledgeable in and ideally have authority on the subject. At the end of the day, what will attract people to your site and have them visit regularly is if they perceive that they will gain some value.
I picked flight training as I have recently finished my flight training and felt I had a lot of information I wanted to share from my experience. Yours may be fashion, cooking, cars, whatever. Find a subject you love and will enjoy writing blog posts about.
Step 2: Choose a blogging platform
This is where you decide where you will build your blog from. I will try and keep this as non techy as I can as truthfully, I am actually pretty useless when it comes to computers and tech etc!
When I started my research all the bigger blogs were pushing for WordPress on a self hosted platform rather than the free blogs. I did not understand why – but after some research, this is what I found:
The examples equivalent free blogs are
- Blogger – a good alternative to WordPress
- Tumbler – I have no experience of this myself but my understanding is that it is half social networking and half blogging.
Aside from WordPress being the biggest blogging platform, a WordPress blog gives you a lot more freedom and flexibility with what you can do with the Blog
- Unlike the free alternative blogs, you actually own the domain and also the blog itself.
- You can have a domain name that is specific to yourself on WordPress. Mine is kcthepilot.com. For a very brief time, I had a Blogger blog and my domain name was kcthepilot.blogspot.com. Not the end of the world but I find kcthepilot.com more elegant and easier to work with.
- You have a lot more flexibility with WordPress, in terms of what your blog looks like. There are many many free themes on WordPress and you can customize it to exactly what you want it to look like
- Finally, certain free blogging sites can be restrictive if you decide that later on you want to earn money from your blog. They may not allow certain advertising on the blog for example Google Adsense.
I am continuing on the basis that we are going to use a WordPress blog! It is the best!!
Step 3: Pick a web host
I am continuing on the basis that we are going to use a WordPress blog! It is the best!! A web host is where your site lives. I am a big fan of Bluehost as
- the price is really good. To get going, the £2.38 per month is perfectly fine but for a couple of quid more, you can actually get the ‘Choice Plus’ package for not a lot more
- The pricing is transparent. I started with one provider initially that lured you in with a free website offer but once all the extras were added in, including SSL certificate etc, it was nearly double what Bluehost were charging.
- you get amazing support 24/7
Step 4. How to setup up a blog with your own domain name?
Go to the Bluehost website
Choose your plan.
The basic will be fine, but choice plus will help as the blog grows and you get more traffic – and it doesn’t actually cost a lot more.
Pick your domain name:
This is where the fun starts. Depending on what you will be blogging about, pick on a domain name that suits you! Just some thoughts on the domain name.
- If you can’t think of one straight away, don’t worry, you can pick one later
- try to make your name relevant to the content of your blog
- try to make the name catchy, memorable and ideally not too long
If you already have a domain name, just select, the option ‘i’ll create my domain later’.
Add your account information. Pay particular attention to making sure your e-mail address is correct as this is where your password reset information is sent to.
To start with, I picked the 12 month plan, but that or the 24month plan are fine.
I did not bother with any extras, I just did not find that I needed them. Feel free though if you would prefer the extras!
My one disappointment was that you couldn’t just pay monthly, but in their defence, other hosting sites are way more expensive once you add in all the elements that are already included with Bluehost.
Choose a password
After payment, you may get prompts for upgrades etc. Just say no – you don’t need them. Choose a good strong password for logging in.
Step 5: Design your blog
When you login, you will be prompted to select a theme. I was more than satisfied with the vast free ones. There are paid options though if you wish. For those interested, on my blog kcthepilot.com, I picked the Astra Blog theme which was completely free.
You can pick paid themes but I was trying to work on a budget.
Step 6: Get blogging and promote your blog
Just get writing and have fun!
For those that are interested in search engine optimization to try and get your blog further up the rankings for search engines to drive more traffic, I found SEMrush to be a really amazing tool.
Another book that I found really useful was How to get to the top of Google in 2020: The Plain English Guide to SEO
Earlier this year, I did the Create and Go Launch Your Blog Biz Course & currently working through Six-Figure Blogger. Alex and Lauren’s course is absolutely amazing and has genuinely helped me loads! Make sure you check it out here!
The Create and Go Launch Your Blog Biz course was one of the reasons my blog grew so fast!
If you are thinking about how to become a pilot (without spending £120k!), check out my best-selling Pilot Training Guide on Amazon.
If you have any questions about how to start a blog or if I have missed anything, please leave a comment in the section below.
Kudzi Chikohora is a B737 pilot with over 2,500 hours of flying in Europe. He holds a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering, is a chartered engineer, and is a member of the Royal Aeronautical Society.
Kudzi completed his pilot training via the self-funded modular pilot training route and created kcthepilot.com to share pilot training and aviation content.