Welcome to part two of How to Start a Fashion Blog for Money, Power, and Glory. In part one, we showed you how to setup your very own WordPress based blog.
This time you’ll give that new blog a fashionable, stylish look, and find out what to do with it after that.
Selecting a Theme for Your New Blog
Once you install WordPress, the appearance of your site will default to one of WordPress’ included themes. These aren’t necessarily the best fit for a fashion blog. Fortunately, there’s plenty of other options out there.
Once logged into your site’s WordPress dashboard, locate Appearance on the dashboard menu. Here you’ll be able to Add New themes, by either searching and selecting from the large variety of themes available for free, or you’ll be able to upload a theme you’ve downloaded from elsewhere.
There’s a wide selection of premium WordPress themes available, too, if you’d prefer to go in that direction. Premium themes tend to have a more professional look, with more features than the free themes, but aren’t necessary for starting out. We’ve put together a list of some of the best premium WordPress fashion blog themes.
Once you’ve registered your domain, have setup WordPress on your hosting account, and chosen a new look for yourself, you’re ready to start writing. And then keep writing, and writing, and writing.
The good news is that you don’t have to write long, sprawling pieces every time you make an entry on your blog. Most visitors aren’t going to arrive at your site looking for a four-thousand word essay on fashion week, or that new fall collection.
You’ll want to try and get most of your posts somewhere between the 300-500 word mark, and since you’re blogging about fashion, include lots of pictures in your posts. Don’t be afraid to inject your own personality into your posts. Swear if you want! It’s a fashion blog, not a web development blog!
Try to make your posts as useful to your visitors as possible. People will keep coming back if you’re giving them something they can’t get anywhere else. If you can blog everyday, all the better. If you can’t, try to at least get out two or three blog posts per week.
Monetizing Your Site
After you’ve made a few posts, it’s time to consider monetizing your blog. As far as advertising networks go, Google Adsense is a popular choice for bloggers. There is an approval process, but provided you have enough content to start with, you likely won’t have a problem being approved.
The concept is simple: you place ads on the site, delivered by Google’s ad network (which automatically makes sure the ads are relevant), and people click on them. You get a bit of money each time an ad is clicked on. Make sure to read Google’s terms, though. Clicking on Adsense banners yourself, for example, is a great way to get banned from the program.
The second way to make money with your new fashion blog is through affiliate marketing.
For example, Bluefly, a popular retailer of discounted designer brands, might be a great fit for your new fashion blog. All you need to do is sign up for a affiliate account with them. Once approved, they’ll provide you with special affiliate links to include on your site. If one of your visitors clicks that link and makes a purchase at Bluefly, you’ll receive a 6% commission on that sale.
Affiliate marketing can also involve placing banners on key areas of your site, but many bloggers find they’re much more successful recommending products directly within their blog posts. The more influential and trusted you become as a blogger, the more effective and lucrative this method will become.
6% may not sound like much, but consider that the average cost of even a discounted designer handbag is going to be much higher than a toaster from Amazon (who, incidentally, run their own affiliate program, offering 10% commission).
Make sure that the products you’re recommending are relevant to your topic! If you’re writing about handbags or women’s shoes, don’t waste your time advertising men’s outerwear!
Keep writing. Start researching keywords using the Google’s Keyword Planner tool to and learning about SEO to get more and more traffic to your site. Take advantage of social networks and start building a following on sites like Pinterest and Twitter. Improve your WordPress blog with great plug-ins to help you reach as many visitors as you can. Learn more, get better, get paid. Have fun doing it.