Blogs are a great way to earn money when you have a chronic illness. They allow you to work whenever you want, whenever you want. There are also things that can make your blogging life much easier and a lot less effort – like Tailwind. This blog post details how you can start your own chronic illness blog (or any blog, really) from your bed!
Your blog can be started for less than £15! This is great, especially when you have to pay for hundreds of prescriptions (and everything else if you live in America or are going private).
The one things I would say if you’re interested in starting a blog is to make sure you don’t set one up purely to make money from it. It takes a while to start making an income through blogging. You will also write better posts – thus gaining more visitors and earning more money – if it’s something you actually enjoy doing.
Now onto how to start your blog!
Step 1: Choose a hosting platform
Choosing who is going to host your blog is one of the most important steps. You need to choose whether to self-host or not. By choosing to self-host, it may be slightly more complicated and costs a bit of money to set up, but this is the best way to earn money from it later.
If you choose to self-host, I recommend using DreamHost. The cheapest plan costs less than £5 a month and there are optional add-ons you can purchase cheaply as well. I use DreamHost’s Shared Ultimate plan and I love it! It’s a little bit more expensive than some other providers, but the renewal cost doesn’t go up. I also love that you can pay a month at a time, so you don’t have to pay hundreds of pounds upfront to host for at least a year. I use Cloudflare through DreamHost to protect my sites and it was a super easy (and free) integration.
Step 2: Choose your niche
By niche, I mean what your blog will be about. You will get more views if it is a popular niche, but make sure it is something you can keep writing about. You don’t want to spend money making a blog and then find you can only write 3 entries! Sticking to one niche will make your blog more popular, as you will have people that will keep returning. You don’t have to stick with one niche, although I recommend this if you want to make money from it.
Step 3: What’s its name going to be?
Your blog obviously needs a name. When I started this blog, I chose My Life Journey because I could write about everything that goes on in my life. I just couldn’t pick one niche!
After a couple of months, I decided to change my blog’s name to Chronillicles because it follows my life with a chronic illness. Although I now focus purely on chronic illness, I’m still happy with Chronillicles, because it seems fitting for a chronic illness blog.
The name of your blog doesn’t have to have anything to do with your niche, but it may get you more traffic if it does. The truth is, you’re never really going to be happy with the name of your blog, so don’t spend too much time worrying about it. You could always just use your name!
Step 4: Your first post
The first post you write doesn’t have to be very long – or very short! It can be as long or as short as you like. If you write what your blog is going to be about, make sure you stick to it. You don’t want to mislead your readers.
It’s really up to you!
Step 5: Keep writing…
Now it’s time to show off your skills. It’s important to write consistently, so your readers will know when to expect your posts.
The biggest thing, especially when starting a blog, is not to fixate on numbers. By this, I mean don’t worry about how many people are reading your blog, particularly in the beginning. It took a few months and a lot of social media use (promoting) for me to get a steady flow of traffic – and it still fluctuates A LOT!
If you’re stuck for ideas, check out my post 20+ Chronic Illness Blog Post Ideas. It can be very useful for chronic illness, mental health, disability and special needs bloggers!
Step 6: Spread the word
Now that you’ve started your blog and have some posts, you need to start promoting it. I do this through Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook, but you can do it face-to-face as well if that’s something you’re comfortable with.
Pinterest is my FAVOURITE method of promoting my blog and it’s where I get the majority of my traffic from. I use Tailwind to schedule my pins which makes it so much easier.
Tailwind is a Pinterest scheduling tool. It has a Safari/Chrome add-on which allows you to schedule images from any website, including Pinterest. This allows me to bulk schedule pins for as far in the future as I like, which means I don’t have to go on Pinterest multiple times a day. Tailwind has saved me so much time and non-existent energy, so I highly recommend using it, especially if you have a chronic illness or fatigue.
Step 7: Monetising your blog
Once you have started your blog and have a few posts, you can try to apply to ad revenue sites, such as Adsense, Infolinks and MediaNet. It took a few tries for me accepted to Infolinks, so make sure you have quite a few posts. It works well with blogs that have a lot of writing in them. I also tried MediaNet, but I didn’t like the look of the ads on my blog, so stopped using them. If you don’t mind the look of ads on your website, I recommend trying these out.
Although ads are a popular way to make money blogging, I personally don’t like the look of them on my sites. Instead, I use affiliate links by using websites such as Amazon Associates, ShareASale and CJ Affiliate (formerly Commission Junction). With affiliate networks, you can add product links to your blog or website and earn a profit when someone buys that product. There are also some networks that will pay per click, rather than per sale, which has the potential to earn you more money by people just clicking on your links.
And THAT is how to start a chronic illness blog from your bed!
I hope this was helpful to you if you’re looking to start a chronic illness blog (or just a blog). Please feel free to contact me or leave a comment if you’re looking for more information, advice, or if you have any questions!