Do you want to create a website and make money on the side? Are you ready to start your side hustle blogging business today?
If yes, you are in the right place! I know people create websites for all kinds of reasons. Even though earning money is not the primary reason for creating a website, we must recognize that the majority of bloggers start their website with the intention of making money from it. And this is not a sin !!
The one who doesn’t want money rises her hand !!
There is a countless post about this topic and sometimes I ask myself why people continue to write this kind of article in this 21 century?
Seriously! If you are a beginner you can’t understand what I mean here. But the truth is that even my daughter with 5 years old can do it nowadays!! Yes, everyone!!
This is why when brainstorming to what to write about this topic of creating a website I decided to not only walk you through to how to create your website but also how to make money from it.
But before we into the meat of how to create a website and make money, let me show you why you need to start a blog right now.
4 reasons to start a blog or a website right now:
- Blogging is fun and, it can help you to showcase your talents, skills, and expertise
- You can make money from it – even a living income
- When your blogging business grows, it can help you quit your day job or take an early retirement
- The start-up cost is not high like a physical business
Now let’s go straight to the subject of the day.
How to create a website and make money on the side?
All successful and profitable business starts with a profitable idea.
1. Choose a profitable niche to create your money-making website
While many bloggers neglect or ignore this step, my advice if you want to create your website and make money on the side, is to find a profitable niche. Indeed, creating a website with the purpose of making money is like creating a business.
You need a profitable idea with a good plan. It is true that your niche alone will not make your website a success, but it plays a very important role in its success.
What is a niche?
A niche, to go straight is the subject on which you will write your articles. It allows you to determine which audience to target – to which kinds of people to write for (their gender, age, geographical situation, culture and lifestyle, purchasing power, etc.).
A niche, in other words, is a market segment in which you can focus or position yourself, and take advantage of the service or product you will offer to your audience.
Why finding or choosing a niche is important for your website?
There are numerous reasons to choose a niche for your website or blog:
- Your niche is one of the fundamentals keys of your website or business.
- It can often be helpful to you when it comes to choosing your domain name or business name. Although this idea can be discussed, it may be useful at certain times. For example, if your niche is money-saving, you will not choose a domain name such as healthcare.com or weighlossrecipes.com. Right?
- Finding a niche and blogging about it can help you establish yourself as an expert in your field
- It allows you to analyze your audience behaviors’ and therefore meet their needs easily, etc. This could help you meet their needs by creating your own product (eBook, courses) or by finding a product on the market (affiliate marketing).
2. Choose a domain name
After choosing your niche, what you need to look at next is to find or choose a domain name for your website or blog. The choice of a domain name, as well as the choice of your niche, is very crucial in the success of your business.
Your niche gives you an idea of the targeted audience you will write about. It also gives you an idea of what keywords you must target to reach them. But your domain name is the address of your business; It is the way people (your targeted audience) will come to your blog – the way they will find you.
How to choose a perfect domain name to create your money-making website?
As I mentioned above, your niche can be used as a basis for choosing your domain name. Indeed, your domain name must be in correlation with your business name and must be comprehensive for your targeted audience.
Choose a domain name that is easy for your audience to memorize and privilege the extension “.com” instead of “.xyz”.
A short domain name containing one of your keywords can be useful for your SEO. But keep in mind this is not a mandatory rule to comply with.
You noticed it – my domain name (sowyourseedtoady.com) does not contain any keywords about my niche. But my site has ranked in Google as well. Find a name that inspires you and can also be friendly to your readers or audience. This is what matters.
See below my page position on the SERP in less than 30 days when I started.
Where do I register a domain name?
If you want a platform where you can start your online business today without too much protocol and at a lower cost, I recommend Bluehost.
With Bluehost, you will have a free domain name if you purchase one of their hosting plans that start at 2.95$/month.
However, if you do not want to have all your eggs in one bag for security purposes, registering your domain name with one of the best domain registrars companies like NameCheap and, purchasing hosting with a web hosting company such as Bluehost or Wealthy Affiliate will be a good choice.
If you want more information on choosing a domain name, you can visit this post “What is the best place to choose a domain name” where I give you tips to choose a perfect domain name and the best place to register it.
3. Choose a hosting platform to create a website and make money
Web hosting is necessary for any online business. whether it is an e-commerce site or a blog you need a web hosting provider that will host your website information, videos, images, and other content in their servers and keep your site live 24/7.
What is web hosting?
In a nutshell, web hosting is a service that allows your website or web page to be present and accessible to Internet users on the Internet – 24/7. Indeed, the role of the web hosting company is to store your website information, images, videos, and other content in servers and provide them to Internet users any time they request them.
How to pick a good web host to create a website and make money?
There are many site hosting companies in the world. All its companies provide almost the same services, but the quality of their service is not the same.
Here are 4 elements that will have an impact on the future of your business that you need to know and take into account when choosing a web hosting provider:
1. Safety & Security: Is an SSL certificate provided?
2. Speed: Bandwidth provided – Make sure your visitors won’t wait for hours (don’t tell me I’m exaggerating!) before they can access your site or page. You know what you’ll lose in this case!!!!!!!
3. Technical Support: Before you buy a web host with a company that when you will have an urgent query, you can get a reply quickly from them.
4. Features: control panel, email, multiple domains hosting, PHP, MySQL, FTP, etc.
Whatever the company with which you are going to buy hosting for your website, do not neglect these elements. Because they are important for your site – especially the safety and speed. The current generation is always in a hurry, and they will not wait for seconds or even minutes for your page to be loaded.
Don’t tell me I am exaggerating!
Now that you know what elements are important for your site, you are wondering where to get a reliable web host.
Where can you find a good web host to create your money-making website?
Bluehost is a reputable and well-known company in the field of web hosting. He provides a quality service with 24/7 support to answer all your concerns. In addition, Bluehost comes up with a free domain name for one year if you pay for one of their hosting plans.
An alternative to Bluehost I recommend is Wealthy Affiliate (this is where this website is hosted). It provides better hosting services as well as Bluehost.
And what makes Wealthy Affiliate special is that in addition to being a web hosting platform, it is also a training platform for beginners and advanced affiliate marketers through their training portal called Wealthy Affiliate University. This is where you can learn how to build a successful online business.
You may wonder yourself, but what kind of training it can provide?
To be straight, it offers any kind of training that can be useful to grow your online business: Affiliate Marketing, SEO, Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing, and more.
You can read my full review of Wealthy Affiliate here.
Why choose Wealthy Affiliate as your web host provider?
The reason I chose Wealthy Affiliate as my web host is that in addition to everything I just mentioned (quality of hosting service, training, etc.). It also offers a robust keywords finder tool worth $19/month in their pro membership plan.
All these combined benefits will cost you $349 (29$/month) per year if you choose the annual membership plan or $49 per month if you choose the monthly membership plan.
Summary: web hosting + keyword tool + lifetime training = 49/month or $349/year.
What I don’t specify is that as a pro member, you can host up to 25 websites – whether it’s monthly or annually membership.
If you can come up with a profitable niche with a perfect domain name and reliable web host company, so you can create a successful website and make money on the side.
Let’s create your money-making website now if these steps have been well followed!
4. Set up your WordPress website
Have you chosen the company with which you will host your site?
If so, let’s go.
In this tutorial, I will use Wealthy Affiliate as an illustration.
If you have chosen Bluehost as your web host, go here and follow my step-by-step guide to create your website with Bluehost.
How to set up your WordPress website with Wealthy Affiliate?
Create your free Wealthy Affiliate Account
To get started with Wealthy Affiliate you need first to create your free account with Wealthy Affiliate.
To do this click the button below.
Fill in your details on the registration page and click on “Create your account button”.
An email with a link will be sent in your mailbox. Check your mailbox and click on this link to validate your registration.
Once this is done, you must log in to your account. You will see your dashboard like this one.
Upgrade your account to premium membership
Before you create your money-making website you need to upgrade your account – click on the “upgrade button” then choose the payment plan that seems favorable to you and then choose the payment method you would like to use (Paypal or Credit card). If it is a credit card you wise to use, choose “pay with a credit card”, then provide your card information and validate.
PS: The annual plan allows you to save 229$ each year. I advise you to choose an annual plan that costs you $29 per month instead of $49 per month.
Set up your WordPress website with Wealthy Affiliate
Once this step is completed, all we have to do is set up your website.
“To do this, click on “Website”, then Site Builder”.
If you don’t have a domain name and you want to have one with Wealthy Affiliate, you can click on the “register a domain” button. Then, choose your domain name. However, if you already have a domain name all you have to is to click on the button below.
This will take you to the last phase where you will have to create your website in 3 simple steps:
1. Introduce your domain name.
2. Give your site a name – don’t worry if you don’t have a name for your site right now. Give any name – you can change it afterward.
3. Choose a theme for your website and then click on the button below!
Congratulations and welcome to the blogging community!
5. Design your money-making Website
Keep in mind that you don’t design your site for yourself but you do it for your audience. So you must design it according to your business necessities and your audience’s needs.
Designing a site is already having an idea of how your business must be – it is having an idea of what might catch and captivate your readers’ attention- your future customers.
But since it’s something you can change as your business growth, don’t worry about it!
1. Choose/change a theme for your website
To design your site, log in to your WordPress dashboard.
Where can you find a free theme to install?
Your website has been installed with a default theme depending on your web host. And you have the possibility to change it later. For example with Wealthy Affiliate, when creating your website, if you already know the theme that suits your needs, you can choose it from the thousands of themes and install it once and for all. This is what I did during the creation of this site (I may change it after – but currently it is my favorite).
Let’s go and change your theme!
To change your theme, click on “appearance”, then click on “Add new” and choose one who fits your business needs, then install and activate it.
I use the OceanWP theme that you can find here.
Don’t worry if your theme doesn’t suit your needs at the moment. You have time to change it and test others until you find what is best for you.
Attention!! “Do not judge a book by its cover”.
Just because you have installed a theme, and it is beautiful does not mean it is a good theme.
3 criteria to take into account before you install a theme on your site:
1. Be reassured every time you change a theme that it is responsive (mobile friendly)
Is it necessary for me to tell you that? Most Internet users nowadays use their smartphones and tablets for Internet research.
Depending on the type of audience you plan to target if your theme is not mobile-friendly you will lose a lot of your potential readers.
For example, more than 32% of my readers use smartphones and 6% tablets. Simply to say that if my theme is not mobile-friendly, 38% will not have better use of my site and can abandon my site forever.
How to find out if your WordPress theme is mobile-friendly?
To make sure you have a WordPress theme that is mobile-friendly, a free tool like Google’s Mobile-friendly will be very useful. Just copy the link of the demo of your theme you want to install (wherever you have already installed) into the Google Mobile-friendly bar and hit the “Test URL” button.
2. Make sure your theme is SEO-friendly
The SEO of your website is very important in the success of your online business. Choosing a theme that is not optimized for SEO is to put your site yourself in “Google folder”.
Indeed, there are themes that use bulky code that is very difficult to read by search engines. But unfortunately, there is no way to find out if the theme is optimized for SEO or not. What you can do is to refer to what the developer says about his theme and users reviews.
3. Make sure that your site works well on most web browsers (this is after installation that you can check it)
Another element to check is how your site works on most web browsers – you don’t know which web browsers your readers use the most. Right?
To know it, simply type the address of your website on the different browsers you have in your laptop and smartphone and see how results you get with each of them.
2. Install plugins to add features to your website.
Plugins are add-ons that allow your site to have an excellent appearance.
Plugins I recommend you to install from the beginning:
YOAST SEO: YOAST SEO is a plugin that will be useful for your website optimization. There are other alternatives to YOST SEO like SEO Optimizer, but YOST SEO is a beginner-friendly SEO plugin.
It makes suggestions throughout your content such as the length of the title of your post, meta description, the number of keywords in the content (if it is too much or too little), etc.
MonsterInsights: It is a plugin that will allow you to better understand the behaviors of your readers (how they land on your site, how long they stick around, which page they visit more, etc.). This is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress that you can connect to your Google Analytics account.
You can create a Google Analytics account here if you don’t have one.
BackupBuddy: it is a plugin that allows you to backup your site from time to time. This is also necessary because it may happen that one day, despite the security provided by your web host, your site be hacked.
WP Rocket: It optimizes the loading time of your site and gives a good experience to your website’s readers.
Social Snap: social share plugin that can help you boost your website traffic and build your business on auto-pilot.
2 Important settings you will need to make to avoid compromising your SEO
Have you ever clicked on a site link and you can’t access it? Sure !!!
This is often due to a change in the structure of the permalink. The permalink structure is often by default like this: yoursiteName.com/archives/123/
When it looks like this one above, search engines can’t read your content properly. 👉 That impact your SEO
Imagine that you published 10 articles with this kind of permalink, and then change the structure like this one: yoursiteName.com/post-name/.
All the content of your site that you have shared with your friends and others will no longer be able to access your articles. 👉 That impact your traffic.
So from the first day, change it so that it looks like this: yoursiteName.com/Your-post-name/.
Where can you find the permalink of your site to change it?
Go to settings, then permalinks and check “post name”.
2. Allow the search engine to know your site: home page sitting.
After adjusting the optimization of your site by changing the structure of your permalink, another very important element to take into account is to describe your home page to allow search engines to know what your site about.
This is really important especially if your domain name does not contain any keywords from your niche like mine. By doing so, it will allow both search engines and your visitors to know what kind of business you are doing.
Keep also in mind that this is what will make Internet users want to click on your link and visit your site. So be accurate and short and use at least one keyword in the description of your home page.
To do that, just click on “settings” and you will see a page (see image below) . Give a title tor your website and describe what your website about on the “tagline”.
3 Must-have pages you should create for your new blog
1. Your “about me” page
Your “about me” page is a page that you will have to create from the moment your site is launched. It is the page that new visitors like to visit to find out who is behind the site.
This page is important for your blog because it allows you to tell your site visitors who you are and how you can help them. It also allows you to have a connection with your readers.
Tips to help you get started with your “about me” page:
- A short presentation of you
- Describe what your site is about: who is your site for?
- Make your visitors want to connect with you by showing the values you can give them
- Allow your readers to contact you (in case you don’t have a contact page like me)
- publish your about me page as a post instead of a page so that your readers can leave a comment – unlike a page.
3. Affiliate disclosure
Talking about how to create a website and make money, it means that you could have affiliate links on your site. So it is imperative, for legal concerns to have an “affiliate disclosure” page on your website.
6. Create your first post
3 steps to create content that attracts readers
I noticed from the beginning about the importance of choosing a niche. Your post that you will have to write must be in line with your niche. And the keyword you will need to use in your content must be a keyword that will attract your target audience. But it is not just any keyword that will attract your targeted audience to your site you should use and expect to succeed.
You have to choose a keyword that has a high search volume, but that has less competition with a high SEO score. This will give your post a better chance of being ranked on Google. This is why it is useful to have a keyword tool like JAAXY that Wealthy Affiliate offers in their hosting plan.
Use JAAXY and find a rich keyword.
2. Choose a headline that makes your readers want to click on it
After finding your keyword, the next step is to brainstorm and find a headline that will make people want to click on your link. Keep in mind that your headline must contain your keyword and preferably put it at the beginning of your headline (especially in case it is long) so that the search engines can read and index it correctly.
3. Write your content
The time for real blogging has come! It is time to put your hands in the “pulp”, to show your knowledge to your audience.
It’s not easy at the beginning but don’t let anything stop you from moving forward.
To create a post go to the post section, then click on “new post”. This action will take you to the writing page like this one below where you can start writing your post.
Just a few recommendations to write an SEO-friendly post and that give friendly-readability to your readers:
1. Be accurate and short from your introduction so that your readers can know what your article is about.
2. Give them the intention to read your post until the end by using relevant and captivating subheadlines.
3. For SEO purposes, use your keyword from your first sentences so that search engines can fully understand what your content is about.
4. Use subheadlines that better explain your content and attract the interest of your readers and always include your keyword in at least one of these subheadlines.
5. Use relevant images to illustrate your content.
5 best image stock sites to find images for your blog
1. Canva: Canva is a website for image design for your blog and social media.
2. Pexels: Pexels is my favorite free photo stock image.
3. Unsplash: it’s a free stock photo site where you can find all kinds of images for your blog.
4. Pixabay: free to use – this site offers high qualities images and also free vectors and illustrator
7. How to make money blogging?
There are numerous ways to make money with your blog:
1. Earn money by doing affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is the best way that many bloggers use to make money with their blogs.
It consists of promoting the product of a company or a person you trust, to its audience, and to be rewarded every time a customer purchases a product/service through your affiliate link.
The principle is to write content that is related to the product or service you are promoting while inserting your affiliate link into it.
2. Make money by selling your own product
As a blogger, you can create your own product and sell it on your website. For example, you can write an ebook and sell it to your audience.
But before you sell a product like an ebook to your audience, you will have to publish quality content that engages your readers. You need to have a faithful audience that trusts what you do.
You have also the possibility once you write your ebook can publish it on self-publishing platforms like Amazon KDP.
Yes, it will not happen overnight. But over time, when you will have developed more skills and expertise in your niche, you can really make money by writing and selling your own ebooks.
3. Make money freelancing
One of the ways to make money with a website is by applying to a freelance job. I would say that this is the fastest and easiest way to start monetizing your blog. If you produce good quality content that engages your readers, you can apply for a freelance job on freelance portal sites like Flexjobs, Problogger, etc.
For example, Problogger is a freelance portal site that you can visit from time to time and search for a freelance job according to your niche or skills.
You do not need to register on the site or spend any money to apply for a job. And your chance to bag a customer is great since you already have some articles that you have published on your site as a sample.
4. Make money by creating an online course on your blog
If you have skills or experience in a field and you perceive that it meets your audience’s needs, why not create an online course to help them?
You can combine all your knowledge in videos or content formats and your audience will pay to have access to it.
5. Make money with Google ads
Another way to make money with your blog is to sign up for the Google ads program. So Google will give you a code that you will place on your site, and ads relevant to your niche will be displayed in your blog via Google ads platform.
You will be rewarded per click, and the amount you can earn per click depends on the quality of traffic and your niche.
8. Promote your blog to make money
When learning how to create a website and make money on the side, you will also need to learn how to promote your website. Indeed, no traffic, you can’t make money with your website even if it is plenty of good and qualities contents. Just to say you need to drive targeted traffic to your blog to make money. As you know, this traffic will not come to your site without you promote it.
So instead of waiting for “the giant Google” to do you a favor, you have to start promoting your blog.
Where can you promote your blog
1. Social media
Social media such as Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. are ways you can use to drive traffic to your site. Note that these social media work differently and the results you get from each of them will not be the same.
As a full-time worker like me, trying to be present on all these social media at the same time is impossible – or at least you won’t get away with it.
Otherwise, my advice is to put your energy on one or two of these social media (mainly Pinterest and Facebook).
When it comes to choice, Pinterest must come first because the result you will get is amazing and for the long term. Indeed your pins can be pined by other people and displayed at their board.
This increases your chance of having people click on your link, and visit your site.
How to get started with Pinterest?
To start with Pinterest, you will need to create a professional Pinterest account, claim your site – in less than 24 hours Pinterest will proceed with the validation of your site, and as soon as it is done, you can create boards, and pins in your account.
Facebook is also a significant source of traffic. One of the best ways to promote your blog on Facebook is to create a fan page, that will allow you to connect with your audience.
Joining a Facebook group in your niche is also a good way to get in touch with other bloggers, and to have traffic on your site.
Forums can be a way to drive traffic to your blog. But you will have to use them wisely. When I talk about forums, I refer to forums within your niche. Find a relevant forum to your niche and join it.
Join beermoneyforum if you are in the “make money online” niche.
Of course, it is not all about signing up, and placing your link anywhere and wait for people to click on it. You have to be active in treads – to give accurate and helpful answers to other members’ questions about the topics you have already posted on your blog, by placing a backlink to your article for more information.
3. Answer questions on QA sites like Quora & Yahoo answer
Quora is a free platform that is accessible to everyone and covers all kinds of topics. Whatever your niche is, you had the opportunity to find a question related to your niche or the posts you published on your website to answer.
You’re wondering, but how do I find a question from my niche and answer it?
The answer is simple.
Create a free profile with Quora. When creating your account, a variety of topics such as entrepreneurship, start-up, culture, politics, travel, etc will be presented to you allowing you to choose those that interest you. You just need to choose only those topics that are related to your niche.
If you are active, each time a question has been asked, and that is related to your niche, Quora will send you a notification.
Tips: Every time you publish an article, you can perform some searches on Google using your keyword – your chance to find a question according to your article to answer is great. Give quality and reliable answers and place a backlink to your post for more information.
4 Summit posts on medium for publication
Medium is also a free platform for readers and writers that you can join and submit an article for publication. Like Quora, this site is open to all niches and you can find your place there. Write a quality article and submit it to Medium.
5 Guest posting
Guest posting is the perfect way to have an authoritative site. It also helps with your website ranking.
It consists of contacting bloggers in your niche who already have a well-established audience, writing an article and asking them to publish it on their blog in exchange for one or two backlinks to your blog or website. This practice can provide you with quality traffic since this traffic comes from sites that are relevant to your niche.
My final thought and advice
Our step-by-step guide on How to create a site and make money ends here. Many people have created their website and they are making a living income now.
So, if you want to create a website and make money on the side when working as a full-time employee, it’s possible.
Simply follow this guide to how to create a website and make money and join the blogging community today.
About how to monetize your blog, there are plenty of ways to earn money with your blog. As I said create quality content and give value to your audience and help them as you can. Obviously, the money will follow.
If this guide has been useful to you and has helped you or if you have a question do not hesitate to leave a comment or ask your question in comment. I’d be happy to answer you.
Also, If you like this article on how to create a website and make money, don’t hesitate to share it with your friends either.
Be ACTION taker, SOW YOUR SEED TODAY!
To your success!!