November 7, 2022
Successful lifestyle bloggers are everywhere these days. They're celebrities, influencers, and even regular folks who just love sharing their stories with others and the need for content isn't showing any signs of slowing down.
According to Semrush, there were over 500 million blogs on over 1.7 billion websites in 2021 (that's a lot of blog traffic!).
In this article, we show you some examples of successful blogs along with actionable steps to get you started.
A lifestyle blog is a form of a personal blog. You typically write content about your unique personal experiences, whether it’s cooking, traveling, fitness, or anything in between.
Lifestyle blogs are a medium where you share thoughts and ideas and interact with people who share similar interests. It's never too late to start writing about what you love and connecting with others around the world who enjoy the same hobbies and interests.
Of course, there will be different reasons for starting an online blog. Some do it because they love writing. Others do it because they want to make money online. Still, some do it just for fun while others do it professionally.
Here are six practical reasons why you should consider starting a blog today.
If you enjoy writing about topics that interest you, then a blog allows you to write what you like without having to worry about someone else telling you what to say. This is something that is hard to find in most careers.
Being the subject matter expert also increases your productivity and credibility. You can weave in additional insights into your writing that a non expert just simply wouldn't be able to do without that experience.
You don’t have to spend hours every day working on your blog. Instead, you can choose when you work and when you rest. It is one of the most popular work-from-home options these days. When you are ready to work on your blog, simply log into your workstation and start writing posts.
Within a few hours, you've got a new blog waiting for readers to consume.
If you decide to monetize your blog, you could potentially earn thousands of dollars per month. For example, according to Ryan Robinson (a full time blogger), bloggers typically earn between $38,000-$51,000 per year.
The best part is that you can set up your blog however you want. You can pick and choose the topics that interest you, whether it is fashion, food, travel, health, etc.
A successful lifestyle blog is a great way to build a following and gain exposure for your brand. It also happens to open doors to other opportunities.
When you share your experiences and knowledge with others, it helps create a community of followers who feel connected to you. These connections can often lead to lifelong friendships and collaborations among other opportunities.
These collaborations come in all types. From partnerships with other brands to speaking engagements at conferences, there are endless possibilities.
One of the most practical ways to learn how to write is by practicing what you preach. Write down ideas, thoughts, and opinions that you'd like to share with others. When you create a blog you'll be editing and refining those ideas until they're ready for prime time.
Once you feel comfortable with your own writing style, try sharing it with friends and family members. Ask them to critique your work and offer suggestions for improvement.
With consistent feedback, you will soon see that your own writing skills improve over time.
When you start blogging you can also consider joining blogging communities. These groups provide opportunities to connect with other writers who are passionate about similar topics where you can exchange ideas.
Your network is also a great resource to see how others build their successful lifestyle blogs.
Amber Fillerup Clarke is a lifestyle blogger who shares inspiring beauty and fashion posts on her blog. She also creates styling tutorials on her Instagram account @amberfillerup. Her target audience consists of women, moms, and travellers.
Her most popular posts include motherhood, beauty and hair advice, fashion inspiration, healthy living, and travel. She uses affiliate marketing to monetize her site and brand, and she sponsors brands and products on her social media accounts.
Joanna Goddard started Cup of Jo as one of the earliest "mom blogs" dedicated to helping women live life to the fullest. Founded in January 2007, her blogging journey covers fashion, beauty, health, fitness, food, travel, relationships, and parenting.
Her honesty and openness helped her build a loyal following of readers who love reading about her life as a mom and their family's wonderful adventures.
As a lifestyle blogger, Austin native Camila Styles is passionate about helping others live happier, healthier, and more fulfilled lives. Her site features a variety of topics including fashion, home décor, beauty, food, and health & wellness.
Today her content reaches her target audience at over 50 million monthly impressions across her blog and social media channels.
Almost any niche you pick will fall into mega categories like health, wealth, or relationships, but often these niches are too broad as a definition for a brand.
Instead, you want to niche down a little bit more to a sub-niche such as:
These are just a few examples of niches you can choose from. You also want to avoid being too narrow in case you need to pivot slightly as your business grows (Home Decor for Single Dads for example).
If you're having trouble selecting a niche, think about what you enjoy doing versus what you're paid to do. Avoid going the route of writing about your "passion" as this word is overloaded with baggage.
Think about what you typically gravitate toward when you have a spare moment. Don't spend more than a day or two on this.
At this point, you want to just get started and you can start by picking a domain name.
Here are some tips for selecting the ideal website address for your blog.
First, decide if you want to be a personal brand (yourname.com) or around your niche (freedomgolive.com for example).
Again, you don't want to be too narrow with the naming. If you call your blog "breakfastinnewyork.com" and you find out you hate blogging about food, you're going to be out of luck and have to rebrand again.
After you brainstorm some ideas, you'll need to select a blogging platform and purchase a domain name so you can avoid having an unprofessional name like sites.google.com/yourbrandname.
This is where a lot of bloggers get tripped up. Selecting the platform to get started can take forever to decide because everyone will tell you their platform is the best. So how do you decide?
Most beginner bloggers can simply start with WordPress.org (not to be confused with .com). This allows you to move your site to any hosting provider if you need to update the infrastructure of your business and offers the most flexibility.
The downside is it is not user-friendly at the beginning, but there are numerous tutorials online and developers that have worked on this platform so getting support is a breeze.
Wix has come a long way in the past few years and they are now a full-blown suite of tools that can take your business from zero and beyond.
The downside to Wix is that it is a closed system so if you ever wanted to package up your website and move it anywhere, that's not an option.
Another very popular option especially if the design of your website is the most important factor. Squarespace has several beginner-friendly templates and tutorials to get you started in no time.
Similar to Wix, if you ever wanted to move your Squarespace website, this is not going to be an option on this platform either.
If you're having a hard time deciding, our best recommendation is to get started with WordPress because it allows the most customizability and flexibility should your business needs change.
Not the mention, WordPress was literally built for bloggers so their feature set is tailored toward this particular business model.
Before you can install WordPress, you must purchase a domain name and hosting, which we cover next.
There are typically two options when purchasing a domain name. Some platforms will bundle in a free domain registration when you purchase their service. Squarespace provides this option for example.
While this may seem like a great value add, it poses issues if you need to move that domain to another platform in the future.
Otherwise if you prefer a one stop shop where your hosting and domain are all managed together these types of platforms could be a good option.
Alternatively, you can purchase the domain separately from a service like Namecheap. The downside of this is you will incur a cost the first year, but it will give you the freedom to change platforms in the future without additional hassle if you decide you want to move.
Go ahead and purchase your domain name after you decide on your blogging platform. If you decided on WordPress you can purchase it from Namecheap. If you decided on Squarespace or Wix, check to ensure they give you the first year for the domain for free (these terms are subject to change).
If you go with a self-hosted option like WordPress the costs will include:
The pricing of the domain name varies so you will want to choose a domain name that costs roughly $10 to $20 per year. Anything more than that is overkill at this point unless you're after a very specific name that can run in the hundreds or even thousands of dollars (design.ai is over $100,000).
Hosting should be around $5-$15 dollars per month, but due to the number of hosting options, this will vary. We recommend going with Siteground for starting bloggers.
Hosting packages are typically broken down by the number of websites that need hosting with the cheapest option being a single website and the next few options able to support multiple or even unlimited websites.
Even though the pricing pages will show the per-month cost, you are often billed per year where it's less expensive the more years you purchase upfront.
We recommend only purchasing a year at a time if you're just getting started.
Because these platforms own your website (remember, these are closed systems and you are building on top of their platform) you will pay them for hosting your website and sometimes, the first year of domain costs are included as an incentive to use their platform.
Be sure to check the fine print of the pricing pages so you know which tier to purchase.
Squarespace prices are here
Wix prices can be viewed here
All pricing is subject to change.
Because our main recommendation is to stick with WordPress we will walk you through that setup next.
This is where you need to get a bit technical.
Once you purchase a domain and a hosting plan, you need to connect the two together by telling your domain registrar (the company where you purchased the domain) where the hosting company servers are by updating the DNS nameservers which is just a fancy term for giving an address so they know where the files are.
Because there are many variations based on where you purchased the domain and hosting, to get the most recent instructions you'll want to google this specific phrase.
"how to point [your domain registrar] to [your hosting platform]"
For example, if you purchased the domain on Namecheap and hosting on Siteground, you would google the following:
"how to point namecheap to siteground" and check the results
In the results page there will likely be a walk through and/or video showing you step-by-step how to complete this connection with your specific registrar and host.
Ensure the resource is up to date as sometimes the results will show screens that are no longer available.
If all else fails, contact the technical support staff for your hosting platform and they will be able to assist you promptly.
During the onboarding of your hosting service, they will ask if you want to install WordPress.org.
Step through those setup instructions provided by them and eventually, you will have a working WordPress website.
To log into your WordPress dashboard and start blogging, the URL will typically be yoursebsite.com/wp-admin
Your dashboard will look like this
Plugins expand the functionality of WordPress such that they can be customized to your specific business.
These free plugins are our recommendations regardless of which niche you selected. They will help maintain your website.
Download each plugin and then install them through the left side menu Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin
Unless you are hand-coding your website in HTML and CSS, we recommend installing a page builder. Kadence blocks will expand the functionality of the Gutenberg blocks that come standard with WordPress
We recommend these tutorials on learning and using Kadence
Although installed as a separate plugin, Kadence Starter Template will be the fastest way to get a fully built-out website from a base template.
From that point on, you can replace the images, add your logo, adjust the typography and brand colors and you can have a website up within hours to days.
It's never too early to start thinking about combating malware. Installing WordFence is the simplest way to do this.
The tutorial video above will walk you through step-by-step to create the best defence against spammers.
To make interesting blogs, you often want to include photos with your content. That's where Smush comes in.
Smush is a plugin that will optimize your images by compressing them without degrading the image. Compressing images helps load your website faster which is just one of the many ranking factors that help with discoverability for your website.
We recommend this plugin to backup your WordPress blog. Although many hosts will automatically backup your website for you, when you make your own copy, you can restore your website if you run into any issues in a fraction of the time it would take customer service to restore it.
Simply install this plugin, export your website a few times a year and save it somewhere in the cloud. Whenever you need to restore your website to a previous version, just download the file and import it back using this plugin.
Once you've finished adding the plugins, it's time to create your core pages.
Most blogs will have an about me page, acontact page, and a home page.
Your about page is often the first page people visit when they land on a web page. This is where you tell potential readers what makes you different from your competitors. You want to make sure that your about page is easy to read and clear, and includes a photo of you or an image showing off your style.
The most important part of your about page is making sure that it clearly states what you do and how you plan to help others achieve their goals.
Here are some things to ask yourself when writing your About page:
Even if you don't have a product or service to offer yet, you must be able to share some sort of insight about something.
What does my brand do? How does it differ from other brands like mine? Is there anything unique about me or my brand that sets me apart from others blogging in these same niche?
Who is behind this brand? Why did I start it? Do I have a unique experience or angle to share? Are there any awards or recognitions I've received?
What problems do I solve? What benefits do I provide? Can anyone else do what I do?
No need to overthink it for this page. Create either a form or just add an email where readers can contact you if they ever need to.
If you don't want to create an entire page you can also opt to add an email in the footer of your website.
Since most of your content will be about reviews, and shared personal experiences, it's better to just get to the content.
Create a headline that defines which niche you are sharing content about and then dive right into the content (the blogs).
No need to create a long-form Home Page. For many visitors, the home page is actually the second page they see. Instead, they will find you through a specific blog post that you write about.
Now that you have the technical parts complete. It's time to get to the main event, creating content.
A common mistake bloggers make is they only write content about their interests. Instead, you want to create content that is at the intersection of your experiences and what the reader is searching for.
To find out what audiences are searching for there are two easy methods.
Have you ever started typing in the Google search bar only to see it "autofill" the options for you? This is Google's way of subtly telling you that people are searching for these topics.
Therefore, the easiest way to find topics is to just use Google's autocomplete feature.
To begin, just start typing a common question that you think your audience might search for in your niche. If you're blogging in the travel niche it might be "what are the best travel"
Each of these auto-complete options could be a blog post on its own, but you have to put yourself in the shoes of your readers and ask if that's actually worthy of creating content about.
I know when I travel, I'm often thinking about what type of insurance I can purchase so this is probably a good topic to write about.
This option requires a paid SEO tool but gives you valuable information about search results. We recommend a tool like Ahrefs which can give you more detailed insights into how difficult a topic could be along with metrics on how often a term is searched.
In this image below, the tool gives the keyword difficulty (hard) along with how often this specific term "best travel insurance" is searched in google per month (11,000 times).
If you're starting out, we recommend sticking with the first (free) method until there is a business need and budget to purchase any additional software.
Now that you know what to write about, it's time to focus on promoting your content.
Nothing is worse than creating content for months and months and having no one discover or read it.
Although there are no silver bullets to promotion, these are common methods most bloggers use to promote their content.
In order to find your recipe for success, you need to try one or two of these methods, and then see if they are working. After a few months, if you find those promotional methods aren't working, try a different one.
Trying all these methods at the same time could lead to overwhelm.
Sharing with the ones closest to you can be the easiest win and provide the much needed early momentum. You know they will support you and it can lead to some word-of-mouth support that can help spread awareness.
This method may be the only viable option when you are starting without the benefit of a previous audience to build and promote upon.
If you have an email list built up or a newsletter following, be sure to let them know you're starting a new blog so they can follow you from week to week.
Highlight the benefits of this new venture so that it's clear why they should follow you.
Lifestyle blogging goes very naturally with video. If you prefer to shoot short videos of your content, this can be an easy way to leverage platforms like YouTube and the millions of viewers that are already on there.
It is worth noting that video production is not something to step into lightly as it can be incredibly time-consuming if you are already low on time.
Similar to sharing with friends and family, if you're already on social media, you can share on the platforms you're already a part of.
Many of these platforms like Facebook already have community features built in. You can join a food blog community and start interacting there to start slowly building relationships.
Just note that many bloggers use this as a promotion route and they don't take kindly to new members that join only to promote. It goes without saying, you want to give as much as you take in these groups.
Once you have a steady online presence (we recommend having at least 10,000 monthly visitors to your blog), you can start focusing more on the monetization of your blog. If your goal was to create income with your content, this is the section for you.
Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular methods of making money online. It's popular because it doesn't require you to create a product yourself because you're just promoting an already existing product.
For example, if you have a blog about creating math lessons for young parents, you could include a list of materials to purchase for the lessons.
Each piece of material could be an affiliate link. When the links are clicked on, they take the visitors to Amazon to purchase the product.
You as the referrer get credit (paid to you by Amazon) for referring the reader to Amazon.
Amazon gets a free shopper and you get paid in the process and the shopper didn't have to pay anything extra. It's a win-win-win situation.
Many notable brands in all industries will have an affiliate program. You can find the details by adding the keyword "affiliate program" after their brand name when you search for them on Google.
Google AdSense allows you to strategically place banner ads in a variety of configurations on your website.
You can choose to apply them only to specific pages or have the system place them using AI to test the best placement over time.
Payouts for AdSense vary depending on how competitive your niche is which determines which ads are placed on your website.
The vast majority of bloggers don't make income replacing revenue from AdSense, but it is a nice way to diversify your revenue when you consistently have high traffic.
You can learn all about Google AdSense on their website here.
Once you get enough brand recognition or even if you make some outstanding content, you could get approached by other brands to sponsor one or more of your posts.
Each sponsored post deal will be unique. Some brands want banners on certain blog posts while others just want you to link to them in your blog.
Similar to sponsored posts, when your work gets recognized, brands may approach you to review their products.
The idea is that with your endorsement, their product or service can be trusted by a 3rd party reviewer which always comes off more trustworthy than from the product creators themselves.
Just be sure to give an objective and honest review (even if you are paid) as your reputation is also on the line. Readers can smell disingenuous reviews from miles away.
While lifestyle blogging can seem daunting at first glance, there is a lot of upside potential once you get started.
One of the best ways to keep up the motivation throughout the years is to blog about topics that you truly care about and remember why you got into this space in the first place.
If you ever get stuck on the technical aspects, don't forget that the customer service reps from your hosting provider should be able to take care of a lot of the questions.
To make changes to your blog, your best resource is YouTube and Google as there are countless tutorials and additional resources about any platform you choose.
Featured image source: Unsplash.com
Goodbits lets you to save articles from the web and turn your bookmarks into weekly digests. Start curating your newsletters in under 10 minutes.