If you want to start as an affiliate and have your basic plan, it is time to have your own website or blog to start making some cash and the easiest way of doing this is to setup a self-hosted WordPress blog.
WordPress has a huge community for support, it is easy to customize with many free and paid themes, has lots of plugins nearly about anything and gets updated frequently to add new functionality and security measures. Do you know even the biggest tech blogs use WordPress for their websites?
With a good hosting provider, it takes about 3 minutes to setup a WordPress blog once you are familiar with the process, it is that easy.
Many experts will also recommend you to have your own self-hosted WordPress blog with your own domain because you have full control of your platform, nobody except you can prevent your affiliate promotions or delete your blog without any warnings. It is also more professional than to have something like xyzblog.wordpress.com. With a professional looking self-hosted blog, you will get more traffic from Google and more mentions on forums and social media of course after you have some good content.
Now you know why to use a self-hosted WordPress blog, now it is time to take action, here is a step by step guide for setting up your own blog.
Get a good domain name
Find a brandable and memorable domain name that is related to your niche. Nowadays finding a short domain name is very hard, but some brainstorming you can find out a cool name for your blog or website with a “.com” extension.
Sign up for a cheap and reliable web hosting plan
Get reliable hosting that has tools for you setup your WordPress blog with a few clicks. You can choose cheap starter plans, they usually allow you to host 1 to 3 websites.
Setup WordPress from your control panel
So it is time to log in your hosting control panel and setup your WordPress Blog. Most servers use a panel called cPanel. cPanel is an interface where you can see your stats, add domains, upload files and setup content management systems like WordPress easily.
To install WordPress from your cPanel there is usually an icon named “Install WordPress” in a section called “Quick Install Scripts” or “SimpleScripts Installations” panel. Click that icon, and it will guide you step by step, which usually takes about a minute to complete. Do not forget to note down your username and password.
Note: If you get your hosting and domain name from the same company, your domain should already point to your hosting server, if not login to your account where you registered your domain and change nameservers to point your domain name to your hosting servers.
Select a nice looking theme that is easy to customize
After installation is complete, go to yournewblogname.com/wp-admin and login to your WordPress dashboard. Congratulations your blog is almost ready to go. Now you can change your theme under the menu called appearance, try to find a theme that is suitable for your niche and mobile friendly. Customize its colors, fonts etc. There are many resources on the web about WordPress customization so search for it to get what you need, but do not spend days for the appearance of your website. You can change/add some features step by step. The most important thing is content, and usually without a content websites do not look good even with a great theme.
Set up some good WordPress plugins
Setup some basic plugins, such as;
Limit Login Attempts: If someone tries to log in to your account with a wrong password or username for a number of times(i.e. 3 times), it prevents login attempts from the same IP for some hours, to protect your website from attacks.
Google XML Sitemap Generator: It generates a sitemap for your website, which is a must, and also ping Bing and Google to notify there is a change in your blog after your post a new blog post.
Contact form manager: It is used to show a contact form on a page, usually “Contact Me” page, by using that form your visitors can send you messages, you will see the messages in your email account.
I also install WordPress popular post to see which posts are visited how many times on the last day, week or month.
Basic settings for your WordPress Blog for a better user experience
Also, there are some other settings I recommend you to apply to your blog. Firstly go to setting menu, click on Permalinks and change permalink type to “Post name”, by doing so your URL structure will be more user and SEO friendly.
Also visit “Reading Settings” and change the number of blog post number shown on the home page, if your posts are large and containing many images consider using a small number, which will make your home page load faster. People and Google do not like slow loading websites.
Some security tips for your WordPress Blog
Use a plugin that limits the login attempts and also use a complex password that contains uppercase, lowercase letters, symbols, and numbers. Also using a different nickname other than your admin username is important. You can change your nickname and password anytime from menu->All users and by clicking edit user.
Now you have a WordPress blog and ready to write some content that will bring visitors, you will soon see that number of visitors is one of the most important things in the affiliate marketing. So write great content frequently to keep people visit your blog.