Perhaps you have heard of successful blog owners making millions of Naira and you want a piece of the proverbial pie? Or you want to boost the Search Engine ranking of your business website and need a good start? This article would be sharing information about the technical aspects of starting a blog in Nigeria.
- Why Should I Start a Blog?
- How Do I Create a Blog in Nigeria
- Premium Blogging platforms
- Free Blogging platforms
- How to make money from blogging in Nigeria
Why Should I Start a Blog?
Starting a blog can be a very effective way to boost your business or personal profile on the web. When you do it right, a blog can market you to the world as an authority in your area of specialization. The publicity and respect gathered from these can lead to more influence in your industry, and ultimately, more money.
Yes, it is possible to make money from your blog directly, and indirectly.
How Do I Create a Blog in Nigeria
There are multiple platforms out there you can use for creating a blog. The one you ultimately choose would be best determined by your motive for wanting to start a blog.
Premium Blogging platforms
You would consider a premium and proper blogging platform where a good image and virtually limitless possibilities are a priority. Your only limits would be your own imagination. For a business, a free blogging platform is absolutely not a good idea.
On a premium blogging platform, you can install, enable, manage just about any:
- themes/templates: for the ultimate look-and-feel
- plugins: for just about any functionalities you need
WordPress is by far the leading blogging software. It needs to run on a web hosting server. You can either buy regular web hosting and enable WordPress or you can buy Managed WordPress Hosting.
Web4Africa is a leading blog hosting company in Nigeria that offers both options. Any of the shared Web Hosting plans we offer can handle WordPress. You can consider the managed option for the very ultimate experience with WordPress.
Free Blogging platforms
A free blogging platform would work if you are not to keen to make money from blogging. It may be adequate for a casual personal blog. It is ideal for sharing content in the form of text, photos, and videos. Its main benefit is that you do not have to pay web hosting fees. If you went with their free subdomain, you can escape the domain fees too. It is easy to set up with the main requirement being a valid email address.
Their main limitations are some technical restrictions. These free platforms tend to be limiting for a savvy and experienced blogger. You cannot install any plugins though you can enable a few built-in optional functionalities. You are limited on the options of themes/templates you can enable. Your blog design theme would be limited to a few options.
One strong advice you should not ignore if you decide to go for a free blogging platform is: you should register and use your own domain name. This is a much better option than their free sub-domain.
- Image: You can portray a more serious image for your person or business by registering a domain name and then mapping it to your blogging platform. It is easy enough these days. A sub-domain would be taken less seriously.
- Portability: you can avoid some headache in future if you decide to leave the free blogging platform. It is so much easier to migrate your blog if you were already using a proper domain name. You can simply export your content, import it to the new platform and re-point your domain.
You can register affordable domain names from Web4Africa. There are over 100 options to choose from. Some are very cheap to start with.
Examples of Free Blogging Platforms
There are dozens of free blogging platforms out there but the following are among the most popular.
Owned by the search engine giant Google, blogger.com was started as an independent service back in August 1999. It acquired by Google in 2003 and improved drastically.
Blogger.com typically offers sub-domains that ends with .blogspot.com or .blogspot.com.ng depending on the country the blog visitor is originating from. It is possible to register your own domain name and map it to Blogger.com
This platform is another blogging beast. It is powered by the best blogging software, WordPress. You can use the free hosting platform on WordPress.com
This option comes with more themes and functionalities you can choose from, to improve the look and functions on your blog.
It typically offers sub-domains that end with .wordpress.com but has recently added other subdomain options.
This is another platform worth the mention. It was developed in August 2012 and is wildly popular presently.
It, however, does not support sub-domains nor domain mapping. All blogs and posts use the medium.com domain name.
How to make money from blogging in Nigeria
Let’s get some things out of the way. Yes, it is possible to create a blog for free. Yes, you can make money from a free blog. To make serious money, however, you need a premium blogging platform.
You need great content that people read your blog and share on social media, to succeed. Great content that lots of people read leads to great blog traffic. Great traffic leads to money.
You can earn money from monetizing the blog directly but this can be challenging considering there are a lot of great blogs out there. They are making serious money from leading ad networks. Thus, you need loads of traffic to stand a chance in competing.
Google Adsense network
Google Adsense is the market leader here, by far. The massive power of Google is evident in every aspect of this ad network. There are millions of advertisers in their Adwords service. This gives them a massive inventory of advertisements. It accepts applications from website owners in Nigeria, as well as, just about any other country in the world.
After a successful sign-up, you would be presented with ad codes in the Adsense control panel. You can embed them into your blog design theme. This would enable Google Adsense contextual ad banners to appear.
Google has strict rules around the placement and frequency of the banner ads. You need to familiarize yourself with these.
They have technical and content quality requirements. You stand a good chance of being accepted if:
- your blog is more than 6 months old
- you have posted content that is of high quality, not plagiarized, contains good grammar
- you use a domain name
- your blog design layout is good
- you have an About page and Contact page
- you don’t use stolen images from other blogs
You can accept pre-written or self-written posts from other businesses for a fee. It is best to be transparent for your long-term integrity.
It is better to mark sponsored blog posts as such. Google likes that. Your audience will appreciate the clarity. It helps them put the content into a proper context.
You can sign-up as an affiliate with major e-commerce websites and then refer traffic to them. They would provide advertising materials including banners, text, blog posts. They would pay a referral fee for every sale that comes from your blog.
When your blog has a strong reputation and brand identity of its own, you can set up an e-commerce store to sell merchandise or franchise. It is much better when the items on sale are directly related to the subject theme of the blog. That way, it would be easy to convert the existing readers/followers into paying customers.