Blogging travel journeys give wings to passion. And if you are serious about it, you can actually earn six figures in a matter of 2 years. If you are an ardent traveler and want to share your experience, then starting a travel blog should be your most suitable choice.
However, starting anything needs time and devotion. But here is the thing: if you want to start travel blog as a hobby, you can do it simply on WordPress.com. However, if you want to make a living out of it, then you have to climb a few steps more to become a professional travel blogger.
Today we shall share with you how you can begin your journey as a travel blogger.
Starting Your Travel Blog – Steps and Tips
Starting a travel blog is pretty easy, you just have to follow the guideline and make it your mantra. Well, yes… you can improvise too. We are open to suggestions and ideas, you see.
The Basic – Pick a Very Good Name
There are thousands of travel blogs on the internet. You want readers to remember your travel blog post name out of those thousands. Make it funny, memorable, perky and definitely short. Here are a few tips you can use for your travel blog name:
- Your travel blog should be easy to type and easy to spell. It should be easy to remember and easy to share. The best way you can create one is by writing down a bunch of words that describe your travel blog and start playing with combinations.
- Avoid using hyphens and dots. It takes time to explain it to someone else.
- If your blog will be your business, then think long term. Don’t pigeonhole yourself by branding your blog name wrong. Take time and choose a name that will grow with your blogging and traveling. Don’t limit yourself to specific words, like traveling in the 20s or myIndiatourexperience etc.
- Don’t use words that are already trademarked or overused in the industry. Domain names that start with Nomadic, Adventurous, Tourist, Travel, Wandering does not stand out anymore because they are overused and already taken by the top-notches.
Go For Web-Hosting for Your Blog
Okay, don’t get overwhelmed by the technical term. Hosting is a very easy concept. Your blog website needs to rent a space on the internet server to store data, images, and videos for others to find them and access them easily.
Hosting will not cost you much; it is actually pretty cheap. There are thousands of hosting companies on the internet. Some even offer free and extremely cheaper services.
However, we suggest you not to opt for free web-hosting as those types don’t offer much space and your website will become too slow to load in the shared space. The same is the case for extremely cheap hosting services.
When you are just starting out, a shared hosting account will reduce your cost to $ 2 – $3 a month. However, we suggest you upgrade or switch to a more dedicated server once you start having thousands of visitors per month.
A dedicated server may cost you around $200 per month. Don’t worry; you will be easily able to cover up the web-hosting expense from your income.
You Must Install WordPress Software for Professional Performance
To start a serious travel blog, you will need a self-hosted WordPress account. Remember we had suggested a free WordPress account for a hobby based-blog site? That one and this one are completely different.
Self-hosted WordPress account software resides on your hosting company’s server. And it is not a free WordPress account. It comes as a package with your web hosting.
WordPress is the alma-matter of Blogging and it will always be. All the awesome websites you see on the internet is powered by WordPress, including major brands like Katy Perry, Forbes and BBC.
However, if you want to know how Server Hosted WordPress software differs from a free WordPress account, then here it is:
- Your website will be ‘www.polkadotsblanket.com’ rather than ‘polkadotsblanket.WordPress.com
- You can install plugins and as many custom themes as you want
- You can sell advertisements on your site
- You can track traffic from your website through Google Analytics
- You will have full control of your data and so much more
Most Web-hosting accounts install WordPress software in your domain automatically. Once it is installed, you will be able to access your WordPress dashboard and that’s all you need to get your travel blog ready and started.
However, there are other things you need to learn, such as:
WordPress is the industry standard for professional blogging. So, even if you are confused with it, you have to learn it and ace it. There are hundreds of YouTube tutorials that you can go through to refine your WordPress skills quickly.
Spend a weekend to learn how to use the WordPress dashboard, how to use the settings and how to tweak your site. With practice, you will soon become a master. Actually, to be honest, you will be a pro in your third post itself.
Buying Premium WordPress Theme
WordPress is pretty awesome. It gives you a completely personalized experience. It gives you the choice to make yourself more professional and competitive. However, you have to spend a little on that. WordPress comes with a standard ‘Theme’ setting. While this is okay to start your travel blog journey, you will have to buy the premium theme if you decide to make money out of it.
With professional WordPress themes, you can personalize and tweak the design, look and acts. You can buy premium themes from the WordPress marketplace. It will cost you between $25 and $80 per theme.
And, don’t forget to create a super cool logo for your website. A professional logo can really make a great difference. It actually makes your travel blogging brand exceptional and stands out from the rest.
Plugins give your WordPress additional features and enhance your experience in working on WordPress. You can download Plugins from WordPress Dashboard’s Plugin section. Most Plugins are free. Here are a few benefits of Plugins:
- Protects your blogs from spammers.
- Optimizes your posts for Google Search
- Integrates Google Sitemaps and Analytics
- Provides social media sharing buttons
- Makes your blog mobile friendly
- Keeps your databases neat and clean
Okay, now that you are almost ready to start your own travel blog, go through these tips to make yourself, as a blogger stronger and more confident.
Tips to Start Journalizing Your Travel Experience
1. Consider Your Audience
If you want to ultimately reach a broader audience, apart from your friends and family, consider who your readers should be – backpackers, solo-wanderers, hikers, families, couples, surfers, teenagers and so on. Pick one and keep them in mind while writing your blogs. Your blog should be less about you and more about what travelers can do, see and experience.
2. Define your Goal
Try to have a clear goal from the very beginning. Your purpose and goal will help you design your blogs, promote your blogs and ultimately earn money. You can use blogging for showing your photography skills, providing traveling tips or network with fellow bloggers.
3. Pick the Right Equipment
Start out with a plan and your plan will involve purchasing the right kit for travel blogging. This will include, a decent camera to click photos while traveling (remember, 90% of the travel and food blogs thrive on photographs), a good quality laptop or netbook for writing blogs, portable hard disk to store your travel photos and videos, and a reliable internet connection.
4. Embrace Social Media
If you want to be a successful travel blogger, think beyond your website and blog. You have to be super-active on social media and post regularly about your work, travel, and blogs.
Sign-up on all popular platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and of course Instagram. A major part of travel blog posts is about photographs. So, make sure your Instagram account is filled with great pics with relevant hashtags.
5. Create Products to Make Money
If your travel blog will earn money for you, then you should approach it as a business opportunity. Use it as a platform to sell something. Most reliable way to make money from blogs is through backlinks and through affiliate marketing.
You have to create a product or service or sell a product or service in your blog. Some of the common products for travel blogs include books, courses, design work, photography, camera, hotels, food, gadgets, event tickets travel kits etc.
6. Network with Other Bloggers
For inspiration and ideas, network with other bloggers. How? By reading their posts, leaving comments on their blogs and linking their articles from your site. Become an active member in travel blogging groups and communities. Participate in forums, events and member meetings.
We have tried to cover everything related to starting a travel blog. And now all we have to say is Good Luck. Building an audience is tougher. So, be consistent and persistent. Give yourself a time leverage of 6 months to one year to establish. Unless you take the risk, you won’t be rewarded. Do share with us your favorite part of traveling in comments.