Starting an online blog in today’s day and age is as easy as one two three. There are blogging platforms like Blogger, WordPress, Wix, Tumbler, etc. that make it incredibly simple for you to start your blogging journey. This is probably why there are hundreds of new bloggers on the block every day – some who take it seriously, and most who do it for fun. If you fall in the first category and are hoping to make your blog a big success, we don’t recommend launching a blog on a whim. Running a blog is a serious business, as it requires a lot of time, energy, and commitment. Here are five questions you should ask yourself before you start your journey as a blogger. Answering them will not only give you clarity but will also prepare you for what’s to come. 1. Why do you want to start a blog? What is your aim, your driving force, behind starting a blog? Do you simply want to earn money off a blog? Do you want freebies? Or do you have an unmatched passion for the things you wish to write about and cover on your blog? Your answer will shape the way you go about running your blog. Without a strong enough reason to start a blog, there are chances you may be inconsistent or abandon it midway. But if you’re passionate about it and determined to make it work, you are more likely to see it through, even when things are slow. It might help to create a vision board for your blog. Jot down where you see your blog going in the next three to five years, with benchmarks as achievements. 2. What will you write about? Mainly, there are three types of blogs – general, niche, and personal. In general blogs, the blogger takes an approach of writing about things that are common and universal, without focusing on one topic post after post. Personal blogs can act as a kind of online journal for the blogger, allowing them to share details of their life with their readers. Niche blogs, on the other hand, cover specific topics and areas of interest, such as fashion, food, fitness, tech, etc. Before you launch your blog, it’s important to have a clear understanding of what you wish to write about. Experts suggest choosing a firm niche for your blog to help it stand out from the rest. Make sure you pick a topic that is of interest to you – even if you’re not an expert in the field – so that writing about it comes naturally to you and you can sustain it for a long time. 3. What will you name your blog? Deciding on the name of your blog is often even more important than the content inside, especially when trying to attract new readers to your website. A fantastic blog name is your best chance at making a great first impression, so don’t leave any stone unturned in trying to find the right one. A few things to keep in mind when naming your blog are its memory factor, catchiness, uniqueness, and relevance to your content. It’s a good idea to research other blog names in your field for inspiration and to see what’s worked for other bloggers like you. You can use a blog name generator such as Namify for blog name ideas. All you need to do is enter keywords related to your blog’s theme or topic and Namify will generate a huge list of meaningful and memorable names that are ready to use. You can also use certain techniques to find a suitable blog name, such as alliteration, rhyming, using unusual spellings, incorporating puns in the name, etc. Remember to do a quick search to find out if the blog name you want is available. If it is, grab it quickly before someone else snatches it up. If it is unavailable, don’t worry. There is plenty of other fish in the sea – you just need to seek it out and wait for inspiration to strike. 4. What makes your blog different? Is your blog adding value to the life of your readers via unique information, content, or photographs, or is it just a part of the white noise on the Internet? If you want your blog to stand out, you need to figure out what makes it different from the rest, and then amplify that factor as much as you can. For example, there may be thousands of blogs about mainstream films and cinema, but fewer ones on Indie cinema. Even in that category, it’s advisable to find a specific niche or angle – is your blog going to review films, interview actors and directors, or give weekly recommendations of the top 10 independent films to watch? 5. How Will You Drive Traffic To Your Blog? It’s all fun and games until you realize no one’s reading your blog. After all, at the end of the day, blogging is all about connecting with people online, or you’d rather just write in an offline diary. It’s important to have a clear-cut strategy for driving traffic to your blog via effective marketing and advertising. One way you can do this is by cross-posting on your social media handles and redirecting your audience to your blog. You can also promote your blog through targeted Facebook ads, which will ensure that your blog pops up on the feeds of your target audience – so do have a clear target audience range in your mind. Another way in which you can attract more eyeballs to your blog is by partnering with advertising platforms like Taboola, who will promote snippets of your blog on popular websites and magazines such as BuzzFeed, Huffington Post, etc. Conclusion Once you have answered these questions and are certain that you’re headed in the right direction, you’ll be fully equipped to start your blog the right way. At this stage, you can do some research to pick the right blogging platform to go with, one that suits your needs the best. We hope that this guide has helped you make up your mind about all the things you need to become a successful blogger. We wish you luck in your journey and happy blogging days ahead!