Starting a travel blog is much easier than you would have thought. In fact you can get started in as little as one afternoon.
Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you purchase something through one of those links, I may earn a commission. Please read our disclaimer for more information.
How To Start A Travel Blog
Step One. Planning
Normally, I (and many other people) would tell you this is where you plan on what you want to write about. But you already know that you want to write a travel blog.
But there is still more planning – I’d imagine that if you’re here though you already have done a bit.
Your domain name is your website’s address. This is what people are going to search when they are looking for your blog.
I personally find this to be the hardest step out of all of them (or the other steps are just that ridiculously easy). The problem is this is name that you should use for the entire life of your blog. Can you change your domain name? Technically, yes. Should you? No. All that time marketing and getting readers, pretty much wasted when you change your domain name. If you’re lucky you’ll have a slight advantage over a new blog. so it isn’t usually recommended.
What you Want: Short, include keywords and memorable
Things to Avoid: Numbers, Hyphens, Odd Spellings
Got a few ideas already? Bluehost has this handy dandy domain name availability checker.
Pro Tip: If you decide to get hosting with Bluehost, you can get your domain name free!
Step Two. Hosting
Hosting is a necessity. You have two choices when it comes to hosting.
- Free Hosting. This is an option – technically. I have a few problems with the idea and it makes me extremely nervous which is why I chose against it. The biggest reason to not use free hosting is that it comes with a complete lack of control. Let’s say they shutdown – your blog’s gone – all that hard work just went right down the drain. Maybe you violated one of their rules, again your blogs gone.
- Paid Hosting. There are a lot – like tons – of paid hosting sites for you to choose from. If your budget is tight, try Bluehost. They’re plans are very affordable to get you started (see below)! Best of all the blog will be yours. You make all the decisions!
Need help setting up your blog with Bluehost? Check out this How to Start a Blog post for a complete walk through.
Step Three. WordPress
Install WordPress onto your site.
- It’s Free.
- Soo Many Plugins. They have thousands of plugins that will add extra features to your site with a click of a button. Bonus: there’s a lot of FREE options
- Themes galore! They have free themes and paid themes that you can choose from. You can even head over to places like creative market and they have tons of themes. I bought my theme on creative market but you can definitely use a free theme.
- It’s easy. It’s pretty easy to use. And if you do struggle with it, YouTube it for a full tutorial on any problem. I haven’t had a problem that didn’t have dozens of videos to help me fix it.
- They have an app.
Step Four. Theme
You can choose a new theme under the appearance section of your dashboard. At the top of theme settings, hit the Add New button. This will take you to thousands of themes in the WordPress Directory.
This isn’t the only place to find a theme. You can check out creative market, and many other theme sites to purchases a theme for your travel blog.
Step Five. Brand Your Travel Blog
To start a successful travel blog, you’ll need to build a brand. It’s not as expensive as it sounds. Actually, you can create it all with Canva.
If you’re stumped or just don’t want to do it, you can head over to Fiverr and pay someone to do it.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Brand Colors. These are the colors that you will be cohesively using in everything. If you’re new to this, one color with black and white is more than enough.
- Brand Fonts. When people look at your font combination you want them to hopefully associate it with you, like Disney (keep in mind, a blog will probably never reach this status.) But in combination, with your colors and style, causal readers may!
- Social Media Templates. What are these? These are the imagery that you will use as a basis for all your social media content. You should create templates for all the social media that you will be using. Pinterest is a must. Try to create at least 3 per social media account.
- Theme. Yes, we talked about theme already. Customize both your colors and, if you can, your fonts.
- Logo. Create yourself a recognizable logo for your blog.
- Favicon. This is that little icon that will show up on the corner of the tab on your website browser.
- Social Media Headers. Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc they all have headers for your profile.
IMPORTANT TIP: Make sure that your font is readable! Both in color, size, and font!
Step Six. Plugins
Plugins help to add extra features to your site. Here’s a few plugins to get you started:
- Yoast SEO
- Akismet Anti Spam
Important Tip: Don’t have add a ton of plugins. Too many plugins will slow down your site. Only add plugins that you need.
Step Seven. Pages
The amount of pages you’ll need is completely up to you. I’ve created a list of must have pages that your blog will need.
Pages you need:
- About Me. Tell you readers about yourself and all about your blog.
- Contact. The contact page needed for people to reach you – your readers, other bloggers and companies who want to work with you, etc.
- Disclaimer. If you plan on using any kind of affiliate marketing, you are going to need a disclaimer page.
Step Eight. Content
Now it’s time for the fun stuff – creating your content.
Need help with content ideas? Check out this post on Blog Post Ideas For Travel Bloggers.
Create at least 9 posts before launching. These posts should be divided equally among your categories. Don’t leave any of your categories empty.
Take advantage of Yoast SEO plugin. With the Yoast SEO plugin installed, you can monitor your posts’ readability and other SEO factors.
Step Nine. Monetize Your Travel Blog
Make money from your travel blog! Here’s a few ways to begin earning an income from your blog:
- Ads. You can get ads set up on your website with Google Adsense. They would display ads on your site and you would get a portion of the profits, usually when someone clicks on one of the ads.
- Affiliate Links. These are links to products or services that you don’t provide. Usually when someone signs up or makes a purchase, you will earn a commission for referring them.
- Digital Products. These could be ebooks, online courses, printables, or anything that you can sell without having to ship a physical product.
- Physical Products. These products are anything that have to be physically shipped to your customer.
- Services. Services can be done both in person or online.
- Sponsored Posts. Sponsored Posts are very similar to affiliate links. A company will contact you (or you’ll contact a company) and they will pay you to write a post about a product or service that they offer.
Here’s a list of affiliate links to get you started with your travel blog.
Final Thoughts On Starting a Travel Blog
You could have you blog up and running in less then a day – including some monetization. Affiliate programs are pretty quick to sign up for – some with zero wait time to a week.
Need More Help? Check out These Posts to Help You on Your Way.
PS: I have this awesome freebie library that you should check out & yes – it’s all free!