Although it seems simple enough on the surface, there’s a lot that goes into creating a lifestyle blog. Getting started involves making several important decisions that will affect the success of your site.
However, with a little research, you can select the best services and tools for you. When you get off on the right foot, a lifestyle blog can be an excellent source of income.
In this post, we’ll provide a quick introduction to lifestyle blogging and what it entails. Then we’ll share five steps for creating yours. Let’s get started!
An Introduction to Lifestyle Blogging
The term ‘lifestyle blogging’ is a little vauge, likely because it encompasses such a wide variety of content. There are as many ways to participate in this industry as there are to live.
Essentially, lifestyle blogging is an umbrella term for content about the author’s daily life and interests. Some subjects this might cover include:
- Fashion and beauty
- Food, cooking, and baking
- Crafting and DIY projects
- Family and parenting
- Culture or location-specific topics (for example, daily life in New York City or Los Angeles)
- Travel and digital nomadism
This niche is one of the most popular on the web, largely because it gives authors the ability to write about almost anything they want. It’s also fairly easy to monetize (which we’ll discuss more shortly).
In fact, some lifestyle bloggers report that they’re able to make thousands of dollars per month. However, keep in mind that these content creators put many hours into building and maintaining their sites. Success won’t come without a little elbow grease.
How to Create a Lifestyle Blog With WordPress (In 5 Steps)
Anyone can start publishing content on the internet, but not everyone creates a profitable lifestyle blog by doing so. Here are five important steps for setting up your site for success.
Step 1: Choose a Hosting Provider and Domain Name
In order to make your lifestyle blog available to visitors, you’ll need to store it on a server and create an address for it. Hosting providers enable you to do the former, and registering a domain name will take care of the latter.
Since you’ll be using WordPress to create your website, we recommend looking into Managed WordPress hosting plans. This will help you take care of several maintenance tasks related to the platform.
Popular inexpensive WordPress hosts include Bluehost and SiteGround:
As for a domain name, you may be able to get one through your hosting provider. The other option is to use a dedicated registrar such as NameCheap:
Hosting and domain registration are both ongoing expenses for your site. You’ll want to budget at least $4 per month to host your site. You can expect a .com domain to run for around $10 per year.
Step 2: Install WordPress on Your Server
Once your blog has a place to live and an address, it’s time to move in. This means installing WordPress on your new server.
If you choose a Managed WordPress hosting plan, you probably don’t have to worry about this step. The platform is likely either already installed for you, or can be with the click of a button.
In the event you selected a different type of hosting, you may need to install WordPress manually. The first step is to download the platform:
This will provide you with the files that make up WordPress. Next, head over to your hosting account and access phpMyAdmin. This platform will enable you to set up your WordPress site’s database. (If you don’t know how to do this, your hosting provider’s support team will guide you.)
In phpMyAdmin, add a new database by typing a name for it into the relevant field and clicking on the Create button:
Then, navigate to the Users tab and create the username and password for your WordPress account.
After that, return to the files you downloaded earlier. Find the one named wp-config.php and open it. Look for the code that reads:
/** The name of the database for WordPress */
define( 'DB_NAME', 'database_name_here' );
/** MySQL database username */
define( 'DB_USER', 'username_here' );
/** MySQL database password */
define( 'DB_PASSWORD', 'password_here' );
/** MySQL hostname */
define( 'DB_HOST', 'localhost' );
Replace the database name, username, password, and hostname with the relevant information from phpMyAdmin. Then save and close the file.
Finally, you’ll need to upload your WordPress files to your server. You can do this using File Transfer Protocol (FTP) and an FTP client such as FileZilla. You’ll find the details you need to log in on your hosting account profile.
Once your files are uploaded, type your domain into your browser. You should see the WordPress installation script:
Follow the instructions to finish the process.
Step 3: Select a Blogging Theme
Once you complete Steps 1 and 2, your WordPress site is up and running. Now you need to transform it into your lifestyle blog, starting with picking a theme.
WordPress themes are primarily responsible for your website’s appearance. However, many of them also include unique features, which is why it’s wise to choose one that caters to the type of site you’re creating.
You can find free blogging themes in the WordPress Theme Directory:
There are also several online WordPress marketplaces where you can shop for premium themes:
Although more expensive, these products may be worth the investment as they often provide additional features and customization options.
Step 4: Activate Key Blogging Plugins
In addition to themes, WordPress uses plugins to add advanced functionality to your website. When it comes to lifestyle blogging, there are a few key features for blogging that you’ll want to make sure to incorporate.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving your site so that it ranks higher in search engines such as Google. This is key for driving traffic to your blog and building your readership.
WordPress has several plugins that provide suggestions for improving your SEO. Yoast SEO is a popular choice:
When writing your posts, you’ll likely need to include some images. This can clarify your content and make it more interesting. Optimizing your media files to prevent them from slowing down your loading times is wise.
You might use a plugin such as Optimole to accomplish this:
A content schedule will help you stay on track when it comes to publishing new posts. WP Scheduled Posts can help by incorporating a calendar in your WordPress dashboard:
Finally, in addition to writing your own posts, you may want to supplement your content with curated articles. WP RSS Aggregator enables you to share your favorite sources easily:
Like themes, there are both free and premium WordPress plugins. All of the ones mentioned above have free versions available at no cost in the WordPress Plugin Directory.
Step 5: Publish and Monetize Relevant Content
Content is the bread and butter of any blog, regardless of niche. Before you start writing, however, it’s important to note that there are two ways to publish in WordPress – posts and pages:
Pages are for static content that doesn’t change often. This may include your homepage, about section, legal disclaimers and disclosures, and more.
Posts are how you’ll publish the majority of your site’s content. These are timely articles on subjects relevant to your audience’s interests.
You’ll need both posts and pages for your lifestyle blog to succeed. Once you start building up your content backlog, you can monetize your site to generate revenue from it.
There are several methods for doing this you might consider. Three popular ones are:
- Ads. Traditional advertisements from brands that you place in your sidebar, header, and/or footer. You can choose between Pay-Per-Impression (PPI) or Pay-Per-Click (PPC) ads.
- Affiliate marketing. This involves promoting brands you like and use, and is a very popular way for lifestyle bloggers to monetize their content. The companies you partner with will give you special tracking links to post on your site, and you’ll receive a commission from any sales that result from your readers clicking on them.
- Sponsorships. Similar to affiliate marketing, sponsored posts involve partnering with brands to recommend their products to your readers. However, this is a one-time deal, unlike affiliate promotions which are ongoing.
You can monetize your blog using one or a combination of these techniques. Curated content can also be monetized in similar ways to take it a step further.
Starting a new lifestyle blog with WordPress takes a lot of work. However, with the right information, you can make the best decisions for your site to get it up and running smoothly.
In this post, we covered five steps for creating and launching your new lifestyle blog:
- Choose a hosting provider and domain name.
- Install WordPress on your server.
- Select a blogging theme.
- Activate key blogging plugins.
- Publish and monetize relevant content.
Do you have any questions about how to set up your lifestyle blog with WordPress? Leave them in the comments section below!
Featured Image Credit: Danielle MacInnes.