Starting and maintaining a blog can be time consuming and costly when you don’t know what you are doing, but with a few tricks and tips, you can do it while also being frugal. It’s a win-win! I am sure some of you are saying, “Why would I need a blog in the first place and why do you have to spend money on it at all?” That’s a great question! A lot of people start their blog as a creative outlet. You get to design a website and write what is in your head – it’s a great way to express yourself. On top of that, a lot of people end up making an income off of their blog. Of course, this takes time and effort. You cannot make money the first minute you start a blog, but if there is a will, there is a way! The third reason people start blogs is because they have a business and need another way to promote it online. Websites are great, but with a blog, people can get behind the scenes information on your business and they also get to know you better, which is great because if they feel like they are your friend and can trust you, they will trust you with their business. I started The Frugal Fairy in 2011 when I was big into couponing and finding deals. I wanted to share the wealth! Since then, it has evolved into what it is today. A lifestyle blog with recipes, crafts, and frugal tips.
Let’s move on from why people start a blog and move on to how to create one frugally:
Find the best deal
There are many people offering blog designs, website hosting, and other blog services out there, but a lot of them are extremely overpriced. Thankfully, finding the best price is relatively easy. For blog designs, on Etsy, you can automatically see the prices displayed. This is a great way to narrow it down. If you do not want to use Etsy, then email a few companies and find out their pricing. When it comes to blog hosting, there are many options! From Bluehost to HostGator and beyond, the best way to narrow it down is by asking for their pricing, figuring out what they offer, and going with your gut!
Buy high quality services
I know this sounds contradictory to my above paragraph, but hear me out. When you buy high quality services, you do not need to keep paying for ‘fixes.’ For example, say that you went on Etsy and found the cheapest blog design offered, but when you received it, they left out a lot. Or say that when you received it, there were no issues, but a month later, it was a mess. Then, you would have to go back and pay someone else to fix the issues. Save your money by hiring the right people, the first time.
Only buy what you need
When you start blogging, there are many things that people will try to sell you, or that you see and think that you might need, but don’t. Of course, you need a layout, a paid domain, and hosting, but other than that, there really isn’t much that you need to start out. Save your money and spend it on things you need and will need in the future and do not waste it on things that will not improve your website.
Make money with sponsored content
Can you believe that companies will pay you to post about their products? I was totally surprised about this one. I went through some older sponsored posts that I worked on, and couldn’t believe how far I have come with my photography! I just about cringed when I saw the pics on this sponsored post. Sponsored content is a nice way to work with brands and start making money on your blog.
Use the money that you make from your blog, on your blog
Okay, so this is admittedly hard your first time creating a blog because you will not have money to spend that you made from your blog, but once you have your blog going and make some money from it, spend the money you make from your blog, on your blog. For example, when it comes time to renew your domain name, take the money that you made and spend it on upgrading! Investing in your blog is a good thing, but only do it on the things that you need, like we talked about above. A few other suggestions of things that could benefit you are blog courses, SEO help, and a virtual assistant if you need one (but this is definitely a luxury). If you need help with content, there are virtual assistants that write blog posts, recipes, and craft tutorials that even include step-by-step pictures. On Call Content is a great place for blog content.
Use your time wisely
As they say, time is money. If you are very skilled at writing and taking pictures, put your time into that, because that is what will make your website stand out, but there are other things that go into a successful website. General maintenance, SEO and marketing techniques, and a lot of pitching. If you are wanting to make money from your website or blog, promotion is a must, and a lot of people do not have time to do it themselves. This goes back to my second point – buy high quality services. If you do not know how to do it yourself, get help. Yes, this costs money, but I can promise you that it will save you your sanity and you won’t have to spend time learning, possibly failing, and then have to spend time hiring someone to help. Go ahead and bite the bullet and find someone to help you with the things that you cannot, or do not have time to do yourself.
In New Jersey, there is NJ SEO – the number one marketing agency in the area, and instead of just saying that, they have results that prove it – they truly do ‘walk the walk.’ NJ SEO’s goal is to increase your organic search score in order to compete for the highest rankings, while saving you time and money. They make it affordable for you to improve your SEO by setting a realistic budget based on your goals, while allowing month to month payments with no long-term contracts, which is an awesome thing for people who are trying to be frugal with the investments that they do make into their website. Run by Matt Anton, along with his brother Dan, who is a retired Army Ranger, NJ SEO offers many useful services like social media marketing, advanced web analytics, search engine optimization, and more for all of your marketing and SEO needs. Matt was the previous online marketing manager for Liberty Travel, where he managed a 250k marketing budget each month. He has many reviews and testimonials as well as 100+ endorsements and recommendations, so you know that you are trusting the right person when hiring them to help you with your website. The successful family-run business can be contacted 24/7 by calling their number and they also have an email address listed on their website, as well. Don’t forget to check out their free analysis, which is normally $300.
Matt Anton with his family