5 Tips to Make Blogging Easier

Yesterday, we talked about the importance of blogging regularly – something that some bloggers find difficult.

blogger with laptopTo avoid this challenge, it can help to adopt strategies to keep you on track. Here are five tips designed to make your blogging easier.

1. Write your blog content in advance and save it so that it’s ready to be posted everyday. When you have time to write, try to write enough blog content for several days or for the whole week.

With WordPress you can load your posts and schedule them for publication at set times. This means that on those days when you do not have the time to write, you can still post fresh content on your blog.

2. Blog about a wide range of things that relate to your niche. Try to understand the needs of your blog visitors and write posts that will help them succeed. Don’t just focus on the main topics in your niche. Dig deeper to identify the sub-niches and write about those as well. Using this strategy, you should never run out of ideas.

3. Invite your blog visitors to leave comments relating to your posts and your niche. This is an easy way to get unique content on your website. The more you encourage your visitors to interact, the more unique content your blog will offer and the more engaged your visitors will become.

4. Do some research to find key questions and issues that people in your niche are interested in, and provide content that addresses those questions on your blog. One way to do so is to visit the blogs and websites of people who comment on your posts.

Look in the relevant forums for hot topics that people are discussing, and weigh in to the discussion in the forum and continue the dialogue on your blog. You might also link your blog visitors back to the full discussion in the forum.

5. To save time and boost your productivity, you may want to use PLR content which you should rewrite to fit your writing style and the needs of your audience. If you fail to make the PLR content unique, search engines may penalize your blog for duplicate content. Think of PLR as a shortcut that will allow you to boost your productivity.

Blogging regularly may seem like a lot of work and it may take time to get the results you desire. But use these tips and stick with it. Keep in mind that the more you blog, the more traffic you will drive to your website.

These are my ideas. What strategies work for you? Share your tips by leaving a comment.

Four Mistakes Bloggers Make That Keep Their Blogs From Making Money

shocked woman facing computer with danger signLast time we talked about ways to monetize your blog. It’s important to know that there are mistakes you should avoid because they could keep your blog from being profitable.

While blogging is a powerful tool for increasing traffic to your website and boosting your online profits, these mistakes could cause your blog to fail.

  1. 1. Failure to blog on a regular basis. Blogs can be powerful in driving traffic to a website if they have high quality and unique content which makes search engines visit them and index the content. People looking for information on search engines that relate to your blog’s keywords will be directed to your website, bringing you high volumes of traffic.

2.  Some bloggers use a variety of short cuts that can mean a lack of useful and captivating information.  It is important for your blog to have information which your visitors will enjoy and find useful. You also want to make your blog unique and attractive by adding interesting images and other features your blog visitors will enjoy.  By providing information people can’t easily find elsewhere, you will attract a lot of visitors, Some will bookmark your blog and visit frequently. The increased traffic should results in higher sales.

3.  Lack of keywords in your blog categories and blog content. This is the most powerful way to increase traffic to your website. You must know and use all the keywords that relate to your niche when posting on your blog. If you have some headings for categories on your blog, make sure that you use your keywords on the headings of these categories as this increases the visibility of your blog on search engines.

4.  Failure to increase the earning potential of  your blog. If you want to earn money with your blog, you must sell your own products and services on your blog. You can also identify affiliate programs that match your niche and sell these affiliate products. All you need to do is to add your affiliate links on your blog. You can review these affiliate products and include the keywords in your blog content. You can also increase the money you earn from your blog by adding some Google Adsense adverts on your website. When someone clicks on the Google Adsense adverts from your website, you earn some money.

Avoiding these four mistakes is an important first step towards increasing the earning potential of your blog. We’ll talk more about ways to make your blog or website successful in future posts.

On a personal note, I haven’t always posted as often as I should or worked hard enough to increase the profitability of my blog, so join me in my efforts to “walk my talk”.  Leave a comment to share your thoughts on this topic.

Ways to Monetize Your Blog

Blogger - How to Monetize Your BlogSo you got a blog, you put up articles and still, your affiliate marketing programs haven’t made one thin dime. There are other ways to monetize your blog and have it generating the most money possible. Once you learn this set up for your own blog, you’ll probably start dreaming up more niche markets to conquer using this method.

First of all, make your blog stand out. If you are just hosting your blog at Blogspot or the WordPress websites, bite the bullet and get yourself some hosting. There are numerous places around the web to get cheap hosting and the smartest move you can make is to get yourself a reseller account. That means you can create nearly unlimited domains and only pay for the domain name, usually less than $10; and pay nothing more for your domain. This means you can create extremely targeted blogs with a very minimum of investment.

Next, Adsense is still a good thing to ad. There are a lot of other Pay-Per-Click advertisers out there, but their traffic all pales in comparison to Adsense. Text ads that match the rest of your website will fit seamlessly and generate more clicks. Also, choose your affiliate marketing programs with care. Do a little research and choose products that are targeted to the content you’re putting up. If you have a blog about Boxer dogs, use affiliate marketing programs such as a dog training ebook, boxer imprinted items from another affiliate program you joined and maybe sign up to market organic dog food or gourmet dog treats. All of these will make great relevant content for your site and help boost your blog as an authority on Boxer dogs.

Content? Yes, content. You need original content and the reason is simple. If the set up and content of your blog matches other blogs out there exactly, Google and other search engines will consider your site irrelevant and it will placed in supplemental results – in short, no one will find you. Be unique, write your own content or buy content, no matter how you get it up there. it will help boost your blog’s page rank and organic search results. One good way to get content ideas is to put in your keyword or keyword phrase and then hit the “News” search on Google and find a relevant current event that relates to your content to talk about on your blog – this keeps your content fresh and up to the moment. If there’s talk about a bill in congress to make spaying and neutering dogs mandatory except for breeders, relate that to your own content and write about it – once you get in the habit of it, you’ll find the ideas flow easily.

If you aren’t sure how popular your blog is at the moment, make your blog popular. Go to one of the many Social Networking venues such as Digg.com, Sphinn.com or Technorati.com and put up your own posts. Also, hit forums that are in your genre and in your signature line, put a link to your site. If you want to promote your Boxer dog blog, show up at some boxer-related forums and post and answer questions. It may take a few postings on the boards but people will get interested and visit your site, click on an ad or two and hopefully buy one of your affiliate marketing programs earning you a commission.

Those are just a few ways to help your blog make some money. Once you get this going with one blog, you can expand outwards and have two, then three and more blogs all earning a steady income. Just do your research and choose your programs with the thought in mind they need to work together with the theme and content of your blog and  you can create a great source of passive income for years to come.

Three Ways for Stay-at-Home Moms to Make Money on Ebay

Work-at-home MomAdmit it, you feel like you’re trapped between a rock and a hard place. It seemed like a great idea for you to stay home with the kids while your husband worked and you both did your homework, watched your budget and figured out how to make it work so you could quit your job and save that money you were spending on gas and child care.

Now, this many months into the arrangement and you’re finding you just don’t have enough to make ends meet due to the brake job the family car needed, that leak in the kitchen you had to get fixed and your tax refund was far less than you both anticipated this year; but you don’t want to go back to work and put your kids back in daycare -what’s a good solution? Selling on Ebay and if you do it right, you can have an enviable income source.

You’ve heard it often enough,”You can make money on Ebay!” and you know what? It’s true. Ebay is a website where millions of people log in every day looking to buy and it’s no wonder there are people making thousands of dollars per month selling items.

There are three ways you can go with Ebay:

  1.  You can sell items from your home
  2.  You can create items to sell
  3.  You can set up an affiliation with a dropshipper

The easiest way to get started on Ebay is sell unwanted items around your home. Clothes the kids have outgrown, shoes sell well, there’s a market for jewelry, home furnishings, clothes and pretty much anything you can think up can be sold for a profit on Ebay.

If you’re artsy or crafty you can sell your creations on Ebay. Before you go out and make a bunch of items to sell (at additional expense) do your best to sell what you have on hand. Sell items around your home to raise money to buy craft supplies. The idea is to spend as little as possible of any “house” money – you’re supposed to be making a profit!

Dropshipping is the final way to do business on Ebay and if you work it right, you can walk away with enough profits that your husband may consider quitting his day job and doing it with you. Dropshipping in a nutshell is when someone else allows you to sell their items and they ship it to your customer under your name. There is no stock to buy and nothing to invest. The customer bids and wins your auction. You pay the dropshipper and supply the winning bidder’s mailing information and the item is shipped as if from you. Easy? You bet.

There are literally dropshippers for every product you can imagine from baby items to Rolex watches. When you’re setting up a dropshipping arrangement, find out if the dropshipper charges any fees for their services. If they do, incorporate those fees into your shipping charges. Also, calculate how much your Ebay auctions will cost to put up and the percentage Ebay will take off the sale at the end to ensure you make a profit. Big ticket items like Rolex watches can carry a profit of $1,000 to $2,000 on the average. Finding a dropshipper isn’t difficult. Simple go to your favorite search engine and input “product name dropshipper” or “product name wholesaler” and you should be able to find a good place to set up with. Most wholesalers do dropshipping, you just have to ask.

Find your items, find out how much it will cost you to put an auction, figure in your shipping fees and Ebay fees and you should be able to start bringing in good money on  a weekly basis and still have good quality time to spend with your children.

Easy Home Businesses to Start

The idea of starting your own home business may seem daunting at first, but it isn’t always as difficult as you may think it is.

Easy Home Businesses to Start - House with money sticking outSome home businesses can be started with only a small to moderate investment required for your initial setup. Thanks to the internet, there are a number of avenues for you to find, start and run a successful home-based business. All you need is a home computer, determination and the willingness to put in the necessary time and effort it takes to build your business.
Some examples of easy home businesses you can start are:

Freelance Writing Services
If you have an aptitude for writing, then you can offer your services online in a number of ways. There are many opportunities you can find online, where various sites need content written. They are willing to pay a specified amount of money per word or per article. There are other sites where you can bid on freelance writing projects, which means that you compete with other writers and offer the price or fee you would be willing to accept to write material requested by clients. If you are a consistently good writer and garner a competent reputation, the likelihood is that you will be in higher demand and get regular writing gigs.

It takes time to establish yourself, but once you do, freelance writing can be very lucrative.

Running an Online Store
You can set up your own online store, promoting and selling your products and services to others. For instance, if you are good at creating crafts, you can build an online store that shows photos and descriptions of your work, along with the amounts you want to sell them for.

If the thought of having to set up a store by yourself seems too hard to do or if you don’t have any products to sell, don’t worry. There are several “turnkey” online stores you can sign up for. These e-commerce stores already have pre-designed sites stocked with products and services. In most cases, a price has already been set and you receive a commission on any products sold from the site they provide you with that has your special ID. You can sell anything from digital products to business solutions to retail products or whatever else you desire to sell.

Usually, you have to pay a fee, but you shouldn’t have to pay anything over $75 and, in many cases, you can get an online store at no cost.
You will have to do a lot of marketing, both online and offline, to get people to come to your site, so be prepared to do a lot of aggressive promotion. Once you get visitors to come to your site, however, then you can earn some very handsome commissions whenever they make purchases.

Translating
Do you speak another language other than English? If you are competent in a language, such as Spanish, French, Italian, etc., you can offer your services to online businesses to do such things as translation of documents, writing their content in a foreign language, etc. There are even some software programs, such as Power Translator Professional and Systran, for example, that may assist you, as well. You will probably have to pay anywhere from $60 to $125 for this software. You’ll also need to set up a website, where companies can come to you directly and order your services.

As our society grows more pluralistic, there is a growing need to reach potential customers or clients in a language they can better understand. Also, many online businesses want to capture an international audience.  Because of this, translation services can be a profitable enterprise.

Auction Services
Ebay is just one of many online auction sites and there is a lot of money that can be made, not only selling your own items, but selling items for others. You can help people who have items they’d like to sell on Ebay and/or other auction sites, but who simply don’t have the time to put in to do so. Offer your services for a fee to post items on their behalf.

Ebay even offers a Trading Assistant Program to help you get started. You will first need to already be a member of Ebay yourself and establish a solid, positive reputation as a consistent seller in order to be a participant. Once you sign up for the Trading Assistant Program, your services will be listed in a directory, so that people can find out about your reputation and contact you to sell for them.

You can make excellent money selling things for other folks on Ebay and other auction sites

There Are More!
There are many more easy home businesses that you can find online, if you do a little bit of research to find out about legitimate opportunities. Making money from them, despite the current volatile economy, is not out of reach for anyone who has the desire, fortitude and motivation to make them work.

The Best Work-at-Home Jobs for Stay at Home Parents

Best Work-at-home jobs - man working in pajamasBeing a stay-at-home mom or dad can be very rewarding. You may also desire to work, in order to bring in extra income to your household or to have a sense of accomplishment. However, the prospect of having to go outside your home, in order to achieve this goal, may be unsatisfactory to you.

The good news is…you don’t have to!
You can find work-at-home employment, giving you the opportunity to work on a flexible schedule by setting your own hours, without compromising quality time with your kids. Some home-based jobs stay-at-home parents might consider include:

Customer Service Jobs
There are many companies, both large and small, that hire people to work from home doing customer service work. This can involve a number of things, such as calling clients, answering questions from customers and the like. These positions are usually independent contractor positions that pay a set rate per hour and you will need to feel comfortable with dealing with people over the telephone. Having standard home office equipment, such as a computer, printer and fax machine are a must and you’ll probably need to get a second ‘phone line, specifically for giving and receiving business-related calls.

Writing
You probably have a lot of ideas and opinions regarding parenting. Why not put them in writing and earn money doing it? Certain online sites, such as AssociatedContent.com and ReviewStream.com will pay you to write about the things that interest you, product reviews, etc. The pay isn’t huge, but the more you write, the more you earn and it can lead to more lucrative future writing gigs. The great thing with these income earners is that you don’t necessarily have to be experienced and you can write at any time and work your schedule around your family. It’s actually one of the easiest ways there is to make money from home. It is important that you write on a consistent basis and that you be able to express yourself clearly. Be careful with spelling and sentence structure, too.

Tutoring
Are you a whiz when it comes to helping your kids understand their school work? Other children may benefit from your “smarts”, as well. If you are qualified, you might be interested in applying to be an online tutor at sites such as eSylvan.com and OnlineLearning.net, for example, where they need certified teachers to tutor students in specific fields. They usually provide training before you get started and when you do go to work, your schedule is flexible, since you can schedule sessions with students morning, afternoon and during evening hours. You’ll need to apply online for a tutor position and, if you are chosen, they will provide your more information on what they currently pay.

Pet Sitting
If you have a love of and way with animals, pet sitting might just be the kind of job you’d enjoy. A lot of pet owners don’t like leaving their pets home alone when they go to work or have to travel. Print out a flyer offering your pet sitting services and ask if you can post it in places pet owners generally go, like veterinarian offices or pet stores. Charge a fee per hour and limit the number of pets you are willing to look after at one time. You’ll need to make sure you have adequate pet food and water at your home for these animals and, in the case of dogs, you’ll probably need to walk them on a regular basis. Before you agree to watch any pet, however, make sure that their temperament is safe, especially since they will be around your children. If you build a good reputation as a pet sitter, chances are that word-of-mouth will help increase your number of clients.

The Field Is Wide Open!
Those are just a small sampling of the home-based jobs out there waiting for you to find them. You can enjoy the best of both worlds…working from home and still being able to spend the time you want with those you love most!