How to Make Money Online & Quit Your Job in 30 Free Lessons Written by Janet Smith... Inspired by SEO Legend, Grizzly Brears.
Real, Actionable Tips the Fake Gurus Don't Want You to Know!
I Quit My Job and Work Online – My No B.S. Approach

I Quit My Job and Work Online – My No B.S. Approach

I would like to show you step-by-step (yes, for free!) how I quit my job and work online. Without a doubt, making money online has been the most difficult yet most rewarding thing I have ever done. Success is extremely messy, but I wouldn’t trade my current lifestyle made possible by my nice little network of passive income niche blogs for anything!

Wanna know the play-by-play? I’ll let you in on all my secrets throughout this MASSIVE blog post that really should be a book. I’ll teach you how to choose a domain name and buy web hosting for your niche blog in the first half. In the second half, you’ll learn how to install WordPress, a WordPress theme, plugins, and how to set up Google Analytics, submit your sitemap to the Google Search Console, and a few more things…

Bookmark this post and read it later if you don’t have at least an hour on your hands right now.

If you’ve been following this blog for any amount of time, you’ll have figured out that this is Lesson 4 in what will likely be a 30-lesson Bootcamp on how to make money online by creating niche blogs.

I don’t hold anything back and I don’t have anything to sell you, so you can read this blog without that subtle, slimy feeling you might be familiar with when you visit “internet marketer guru” blogs. 🙂

Lesson 1 and all other subsequent lessons can be found by clicking here.


Okay, let’s get this show on the road. I quit my job and work online and you can, too, if you follow the lessons on this blog.

pros and cons of niche blogs

Size Your Domain Name to Your Type of Niche Blog

First things first: The importance of choosing a good domain name varies depending on what your intention is with your blog. In fact, being able to quit your job and work online is riding on your ability to make a choice and stick with it.

Your domain name needs to be specific to your niche, but not too specific if you want to pursue an authority niche blog that serves a broader range of topics within a niche. If you’re going for less competition and a more narrowly focused niche, then specific can be good.

You can determine your intentions by asking yourself the following:

Do you want a smaller, passive niche blog with 30 to 50 articles or a larger, authority niche blog that will accumulate hundreds or even thousands of articles over a longer period of time? You must decide what you want before you purchase a domain name.

passive niche blogs

Pros and Cons of Passive Niche Blogs

Passive niche blogs are my favorite and are the type I build most often. Here’s why:

Pros of Passive Niche Blogs

  • Only have to write 30 to 50 blog posts and wait about 8 months for the blog to properly age and start getting good traffic.
  • Ads from a premium ad network (not Adsense) can easily be placed on a passive niche blog once the monthly page views hit 30k. Once you start getting up to 100k+ per month, the income can get really good. Start up a couple of passive niche blogs that each get 100k page views per month and you’ll likely be making enough money to quit your job.
  • Easily scalable. Want more traffic? Write more blog posts that target more keywords.
  • Set it and (mostly) forget it. Pretty passive income for those who are lazy, having health issues, or travel in places where Internet can be scarce. Can go months (sometimes years, but I don’t recommend it) without posting a single blog post and still continue ranking for keywords for many years. *If you wait too long to write a blog post, from time to time, the ad network might ask that you publish fresh content and you will need to comply in order to keep the ads on your blog. As a general rule, I like to publish at least 1 blog post per month on my established passive niche blogs – obviously, after the initial 30 posts have been published.
  • Gives the opportunity to share stellar content in a narrowly-focused niche (or a niche looked at from my perspective) that likely doesn’t have top-notch content available elsewhere (or if so, the picking is usually slim). I love that I can help out people who are seeking information in small niches that I’m also passionate about.

Cons of Passive Niche Blogs

There aren’t many, but everything has at least a couple cons, so they are for passive niche blogs:

  • If the niche is too small or narrowly-defined, the traffic can be limited and plateau off at some point. You also might run out of ideas for blog posts if your topic is too limited. This can be true of all niches, but especially so in this case. Be careful not to choose a niche that is too narrowly defined. There need to be at least 50k people per month searching for all your keywords combined. Personally, I prefer if it’s 100k or more. Luckily, there are usually hundreds or even thousands of possible related keyword combinations for most everything and the 50-100k adds up fast.
  • Building on the last bullet point, passive niche blogs almost always have a small fraction of the traffic of a larger, authority blog. This fact comes with the territory. On average, you will have to build probably 2 to 4 smaller, passive niche blogs to equal 1 larger authority blog. That means you will have to double, triple, or quadruple your initial efforts.
  • Not as brandable or memorable as a large authority blog. Most people will click on one of your blog posts from a search result, maybe read it (or maybe not), maybe click an affiliate link (or maybe not), and go off to do something else. They will most likely not remember you or your blog 5 minutes later. I’m ok with this because I got the page view and will get paid by my ad networks. If you’re looking for notoriety and a brandable blog that looks great printed on a t-shirt, you’ll want to build an authority blog instead.
  • Monetization methods are more limited when you’re aiming for passive income. Usually, you’ll be forced to go with ads or affiliate products created by others (or both).

Passive niche blogs tend to be more anonymous and thankless. I give out great info, but no one knows who I am. For me, this is a positive thing because I’m one hell of an introvert. For others, this is a negative.

It is what it is. Decide for yourself; I’m only here to help light the path for you.

Remember, just because 100k per month are searching up keywords in your niche doesn’t mean you will get all 100k – because you won’t. Even if you’re #1 for all your keywords (you won’t be), not everyone will click on your blog post in the search results. The top 3 results get most of the traffic, with #1 getting the most, but remember that the traffic is divided up between them. However, you can really skew the results (even if you’re lower on the first page) by crafting a captivating blog post title, which we will talk about in the lesson about writing and formatting blog posts.

authority niche blogs

Pros and Cons of Authority Niche Blogs

I’ve made it very obvious that authority niche blogs usually aren’t my favorite, but they do have their merits. Let’s not totally discount them. 🙂

Pros of Authority Niche Blogs

  • Has the potential to really grow its traffic. Authority niche blogs tend to cover a broader range of topics within a niche and have a larger potential audience. More eyes = more $.
  • If you’re willing to be patient during the waiting period while the blog gains authority with Google, you have a more efficient money-making machine that will crank out income for a long time to come – even if you stop publishing content indefinitely.
  • Gives you the platform to become a well-known expert in your niche. If you’re looking for a brandable name that extends into the offline world, fame/attention from the media, etc., running an authority blog is the way to accomplish this.
  • Monetization methods are virtually endless for an authority niche blog. Once you have the traffic, you can easily sell anything as long as it’s related to your niche.

Cons of Authority Niche Blogs

  • Authority niche blogs are expected to create and sell their own products (e-course, books and e-books, physical products, etc.) that require customer service. You will also be expected to be active on social media, give refunds, ship physical products if you don’t sell e-products, and solve technical log-in issues (or hire staff who will do this for you). Even if you hire people, you still have to manage them. It’s very difficult to go on vacation or focus on other projects for any significant amount of time if you own an authority blog. It’s much better than a crappy 9 to 5 job where you don’t call the shots, but it still requires a job-like schedule. For me, that would be an issue. Of course, if you plan to sell a product you’re passionate about and you’re eager to take the good with the bad, that’s a different story – and I say go for it!
  • Compared to a smaller, untapped niche, it takes much longer for an authority niche blog to rank on the first page of search results for keywords because they are usually chasing more competitive keywords. Not always true if you’re good at keyword research and can find some gems, but in general, it is true…
  • More frequent new competitors. If your niche is too popular, everyone and their grandmother will be starting blogs to compete with yours. Make sure you have a unique angle, a strong opinion, and a high level of competence if you are going for a more popular niche.
  • It is basically a requirement to build up an authority niche blog to hundreds or even thousands of blog posts over time. Of course, you will publish your initial 30 posts just like you would with a passive blog, but the difference here is that you have to keep going steadily. You must adhere to a publishing schedule. Again, this will likely require hiring a team of writers that you have to pay, train, and manage – unless you plan on spending all of your time writing content, which would likely compromise the quality of that content.

For most niches, I just don’t have the patience to run an authority niche blog. Starting one is never my first choice, but you might be different.

quit this job is a passive niche blog

What About Quit This Job? Isn’t it an Authority Niche Blog?

Yes and no. I have designed this particular blog to be an authority niche blog in theory because it has the potential to get obscene amounts of traffic and I’m not sure how many blog posts will end up being published or if they’ll be ongoing, but it’s really a passive niche blog in disguise. It is focused on serving people who want to quit their job by creating niche blogs (not the super general making money online niche), it lacks a product created by me, and it’s going to start out with about 30 blogs posts.

I will accept the responsibility of dealing with customer service in the future if I ever decide to change the monetization strategy and create a product.


how to choose a domain name

How to Choose a Domain Name

Now that I have set the stage in the previous section about passive versus authority niche blogs, let’s discuss how to choose a domain name. This part can be tricky because pretty much every good domain name has been taken!

They’re either using the good domain names – or holding onto them in hopes that some desperate person will buy it for hundreds or thousands of dollars.

If a domain name you had your heart set on is taken, don’t pay for a premium domain unless you have the money and are inflexible about choosing a different name. C’mon… just choose a different domain name!

On that note, I was surprised QuitThisJob.com was available. I grabbed it right away. If you find the perfect domain name right away, too, buy it immediately – even if you’re not planning on starting the blog quite yet. Make sure you have it before someone else does. 🙂

“Niche Down” – Get More Specific for a Smaller, Passive Niche Blog

The domain name you choose for a passive niche blog is less important than it is for an authority niche blog. Therefore, there is less pressure on you.

What’s important for passive niche blog domain names are two things:

  1. Choose a domain name with one of your major keywords (or one of its synonyms) in it.
  2. The domain name should immediately make it clear what your blog is about.

“Niche Up” – Get Less Specific or Even Creative for a Larger, Authority Niche Blog

An authority niche blog should have a name (and therefore, domain name, too) that is memorable and possibly even brandable. People are likely to want to go directly to your URL or recommend it to others once it has established authority. It’s important that they are able to remember the name of your blog.

What’s important for authority niche blog domain names are two things:

  1. Choose a domain name that is brandable (would look good on a hat or t-shirt, for example), memorable, and creative if you’re up for it. Sometimes you can even misspell a word on purpose.
  2. The domain name should be as short as possible so people can easily type it out. Keywords are not necessary here because you’re going for brand recognition.

Domain Name Tips for All Types of Niche Blogs

  • Always purchase a .com domain name. A .com extension is more trustworthy, authoritative, isn’t a fad, and easy to remember. Even if your audience can remember the beginning or your URL, they most likely will type in “.com” out of habit. If your actual domain extension happens to be “.net” or “.co.uk” or “.pizza” or whatever… and they type in “.com” it’s not going to to take them to your blog!
  • Type out the possible domain names you’re considering and see what the letters look like next to each other. Make sure it doesn’t accidentally spell something inappropriate or weird with all the words side by side. Want a couple of real-life examples of how certain words or letters don’t look good next to each other? OK, here goes… Click each link below for some laughs. All of them are safe for work, despite what your first impression might be!
  • Words that have too many repeating letters look like an eyesore and should be reconsidered. For example, 3 s’s or e’s in a row don’t look good and will frequently get mistyped.
  • Hyphens between words look spammy.
  • Don’t make your domain name any more than 3 or 4 words.
  • Avoid long words that are a pain to type out. No one wants to type out supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.com!
domain name modifiers

100 Domain Name Modifiers to Help You Brainstorm

The following is a list of 100 domain name modifiers that you can add to the beginning or end of your keyword phrase or tack onto a name you have in mind.

This list is more helpful for passive niche blogs, but can be useful for authority blogs as well. However, if I were to start up a bona fide authority niche blog, I’d go for somewhat of a brandable made-up name that sticks in peoples’ minds better.

A
Academy
Addict
Advice
Advisor
Angel
Answer man
Awesome
Beast
Best
Big time
Blog
Boss
Bros
Buddy
Catalyst
Central
Colossal
Cowboy
Diva
Dream
Epic
Expert
FAQS
Fever
For beginners
Gal
Galore
Geek
Genie
Girl
Group
Guide
Guru
Guy
Headquarters
Hello
Hero
HQ
Hub
Insider
Journey
Junkie
Just
Kickstart
King
Lady
League
Legend
Lounge
Magazine
Man
Mania
Maniac
Mastermind
Mayhem
My
Ninja
Now
Online
Overhaul
Panda
Planet
Prince
Princess
Pro
Queen
Realm
Reboot
Resource
Restart
Rockstar
Roundtable
Samurai
School
School of
Sleuth
Solution
Source
Source for
Superstar
The
Time
Tips
Today
Topia
Tricks
Tutor
Ultimate
Ultra
Underground
Universe
University
Unplugged
Viva
Web
Wizard
World
World of
Zone

Want More Domain Name Modifiers?

Try a domain name generator tool from one of these websites if you want a little more hand-holding:


how to buy domain name - web hosting

How to Buy a Domain Name and Web Hosting Account

Now that you’ve chosen your niche, done your keyword research, and found an acceptable domain name that’s actually available, it’s time to buy the domain name and a cheap hosting account.

Namecheap

I recommend Namecheap for the cheapest domain name/hosting combo solution. Just get the Stellar or Stellar Plus Shared Hosting Plan billed on a yearly basis for the best deal. Then get your .com domain name (NOT the “free” .website one they offer!).

domain name - namecheap

Privacy Protection and an SSL certificate (Namecheap calls it PositiveSSL) both come free with a domain and hosting purchase, so there’s no need to pay extra for PositiveSSL for this first year. They’re a bit misleading about that… so be careful.

positivessl included - namecheap

All you have to do is install it using the plug-in that’s available in the cPanel after you’ve finished the purchase. I’ll show you how to do that in the lesson about how to set up and configure your niche blog.

For the record, it is important to have an SSL certificate installed on your blog so that Google doesn’t issue a big, fat, ugly “warning” to visitors that your blog “might not be safe”. Of course, that’s ridiculous because your blog is safe, but they’re cracking down on blogs and websites that do not take the extra step to secure themselves – even if there aren’t any monetary transactions taking place.

Whatever. Just install the SSL cert. It’s free for a year. Bah humbug.

SiteGround

I also recommend SiteGround for the best customer service and server up-time. It’s more expensive than Namecheap, but these guys are great. Click on Reliable Web Hosting and get the StartUp or GrowBig Plan, then proceed by adding your domain name, privacy protection, etc.

siteground web hosting startup plan

Keep in mind that the StartUp Plan only allows 1 blog, so when you want to start a second blog, you’ll have to pay the difference to upgrade to the GrowBig Plan.


How to Set Up and Configure Your New Niche Blog

For this section, I’m going to use Namecheap as the example in the screenshots because most of you will probably choose them as your host. The process is similar for SiteGround or any other web host because they all have cPanel interfaces, so if you aren’t using Namecheap, you will be able to easily figure it out based on my examples here. If by chance you can’t, you can always contact your host’s technical support for assistance – after all, that’s what they’re there for.

How to Install PositiveSSL

If you are a Namecheap customer, they have a handy plug-in called Namecheap SSL that will install your SSL certificate in just a couple of clicks. Doing it manually by following the instructions via the SSL/TLS Manager in the cPanel is easy as well, but the plug-in installation is almost too easy.

You can find this plug-in or install it the manual way by logging in to your Namecheap cPanel, which is accessible at yourdomainname.com/cpanel with the username and password Namecheap provided to you when you signed up.

Namecheap SSL Plug-in
positivessl install namecheap cpanel

Follow the directions given on-screen to install via the cPanel plug-in and use a little common sense – and you’ll get to a similar screen as shown above. Its status will be ‘in progress’ for a few minutes; when it’s ready it will be green and display its status as active. Make sure the HTTPS Redirect switch is turned ON and is green like the switch next to the quitthisjob.com entry in the screenshot above.

If you want, you can test that all is working fine and dandy by typing https://yourdomainname.com into a web browser. WordPress is not installed yet, but you won’t receive a nasty warning message that your website isn’t safe like the screenshot below. This step is completely optional as long as the SSL status shows as active in your cPanel.

How to Create an Email Address @yourdomainname.com

You need to create an admin email address via cPanel now. You’ll need it for the WordPress installation and it will come in handy in the future as your niche blog starts to gain traffic and people start to contact you.

In the Namecheap cPanel, creating an email address is easy. Scroll down to the Email section and click on ‘Email Accounts’:

namecheap email setup

On the screen that follows, click on the ‘Add Email Account’ tab at the top left and go through the following 5 steps to create your email account:

create email address namecheap

How to Install WordPress via CPanel

Now it’s time to get WordPress installed.

Via the Namecheap cPanel, scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page until you find the WordPress icon under the Softaculous Apps Installer section. It looks like this:

namecheap softaculous wordpress installer

Click the WordPress icon and proceed to the next screen where you will click the blue ‘Install Now’ button, which looks like the following:

The version of WordPress you’ll be installing will probably be different than the version in the screenshot. That’s fine. Install whatever the latest version is. On the next screen, make sure https:// is selected and make sure the correct domain name is chosen, like so:

Scroll down and type in a site name and site description (be sure to include your main keyword for both unless you’re creating an authority blog with a brandable, creative name). Also, type in an admin username (do NOT leave it as admin or use your name unless you want to get hacked easily) and come up with a difficult-to-guess password that has many symbols and numbers with NO dictionary words or names in it. Be sure to save your username and password in a safe place! Finally, type in the admin email address that you created via cPanel in the previous section:

I receommend installing the following plug-ins and optionally, you can select a theme. It doesn’t matter which one you choose because I have a couple of free WordPress themes to recommend to you after you get WordPress installed. For now, the theme is irrelevant.

Scroll down to the bottom and click the blue ‘Install’ button. You can enter your email to receive the installation details, if you want.

Allow it to finish installing. It will take a few seconds. It’ll let you know when it’s done.

When it is done, you can go to yourdomainname.com/wp-admin and log in with the username and password you created.

What is the Best WordPress Theme to Install?

There is no single best WordPress theme. In my opinion, the best is always free. Fortunately, there are a lot of free WordPress themes that look clean and modern.

For my niche blog system, there are two free themes I frequently use that I recommend. You don’t have to use either of them, obviously. The main thing is to find a theme (free or paid) that has the ability to display your blog posts individually on the home page in a grid or list format – preferably, with a post slider at the top.

How to Install the OceanWP Theme

I recommend the OceanWP theme with either the Blogger demo or the Personal demo. I really like OceanWP because it’s been around for a while and the developers keep it updated and relatively bug-free. Also, it’s free, and you already know how I feel about free if you’ve been reading these lessons.

I’m using the OceanWP theme with the Blogger demo on this blog, in case you were wondering. I use the Personal demo on some other blogs I own. If you go to Appearance > Themes from within your new WordPress dashboard…

…and if you click the ‘Add New’ button at the top left…

…then do a search for oceanwp…

OceanWP will show up in the search results. There will be an ‘Install’ button if you hover your mouse over it. It shows as installed in the screenshot because…well… I already installed it and it’s my active theme, so I wasn’t going to re-install it for this mini-tutorial. You can figure out how to do it. You’re smart…

After you install it, make sure to activate it.

Now you will need to install one of the demos to make it look cool. Again, I recommend the Blogger or Personal demo because their designs make it easy for people to click on my blog posts without having to dig. Pick the one you like. Here’s how to install an OceanWP demo:

How to Install an OceanWP Demo

Go to Theme Panel > Install Demos

On the next page, click on Blogger (anywhere on the thumbnail image) or scroll down a bit and click on Personal.

or…

You will then get a pop-up that looks similar to this:

Install the Ocean Posts Slider if you’re importing the Personal demo because that slider will look great at the top of your blog, front and center! Don’t purchase the Ocean Sticky Header… you don’t need it. Why spend money when you don’t need to? Click ‘Go to the Next Step’ as shown above and proceed to the following pop-up:

Leave all the boxes checked and click ‘Install This Demo’. Make sure everything is activated. You’re good to go now! Go to Appearance > Customize to get started customizing your theme, like so:

The following is what the customization interface looks like. It’s the same interface that a ton of other themes use, so if you’ve used WordPress before, this will be familiar to you:


How to Install the Pepper Theme

If OceanWP doesn’t strike your fancy, I also recommend the free Pepper theme. Pepper can’t be installed directly within WordPress like OceanWP can, so you have to go to their website to download the zip file.

You are forced to enter your email into their sales funnel (yep, there is a paid version, but don’t fret because the free version works just fine)… Just enter your email address.

Wait for the email to be delivered and click into the body of the email. Click the ‘Download Pepper’ button and download the zip file.

The zip folder will look something like this (maybe a different version number) after you download it. Do not unzip the folder because you’ll be uploading it to WordPress as a zipped folder.

Go to Appearance > Themes like so:

Click on the ‘Add New’ button as follows:

Next, click on the ‘Upload Theme’ button:

Which will bring you to a similar screen as this where you will locate that zip folder you just downloaded and upload it here:

Click the ‘Install Now’ button:

And remember to activate your new theme:

Pepper has a similar customization interface as OceanWP and it is accessed in the exact same way: By going to Appearance > Customize.


Are Paid WordPress Themes Worth It?

In my humble opinion, no – not when you’re just starting out. At this point, you don’t know if you’ll be able to stick with this process and actually publish your initial 30 blog posts. Why spend money or obsess over design until you’ve done at least that much?

If you insist, though, I do have one recommendation for a paid WordPress theme:

If you want a quality paid theme, I recommend X Theme. It’s been around for what seems like forever, it’s well maintained by its developers, and it can be customized to work with any niche and do practically anything you want it to do.

Who Should Buy X Theme?

If you intend to create a badass authority blog, purchasing X Theme now or in the future after traffic picks up can be a good investment. It’s not that expensive, so grab a licensed copy, if you want. I know I’ve spent money on worse things before… so…


Don’t Waste Time on the Design

Now is a fantastic time to mention that you should not be dinking around with your theme’s design right now. Just get the theme installed, get a quick logo uploaded so your blog doesn’t look like spam (because it’s not spam!!), and make sure your blog posts are front and center. Aside from that, forget the design for now! No one will be visiting your blog for quite a while.

Focus on getting those 30 blog posts written, which we will go over in Lesson 5.

How to Design a Quick Logo for Your New Niche Blog

Let’s talk about the logo for a second. Every blog needs a semi-good looking logo. You’re going to be sharing killer content, so make yourself look more legit with a nicely designed logo. Optics are important and a logo is a simple way to dress up your free WordPress theme. A logo is more important than the theme.

You can affordably design a logo one of three ways:

  1. If you are good with PhotoShop or Gimp, design it yourself.
  2. Use Canva.com to design a logo using one of the pre-made designs for inspiration. This is what I did for this blog. My logo doesn’t look all that great, but it’s good enough. And did I mention it was free? 😀
  3. Buy a cheap Fiverr gig for anywhere from $5 to $25 and have a pro design one for you. I’ve done this before and they do a great job. Usually, they give you a few logo options to choose from. Not a bad way to spend $25.

Change the Default Permalink Settings

Go to Settings > Permalinks and change your permalink settings to ‘Post name’.

This permalink setting will make your blog posts more search engine friendly because they will be displaying your keywords. This post name format also makes them more evergreen because they aren’t displaying a month and year to visitors. If your content is still valid and relevant, who cares when it was published?


Install Some Useful WordPress Plugins

Before I talk about specific WordPress plugins you should install, let’s get this out of the way for all the WordPress beginners out there:

What is a WordPress Plugin?

A WordPress plugin is software (usually written by third-party developers rather than the WordPress organization itself) designed to complement or add on to the functionality of WordPress.

Plugins can do almost anything you can imagine. Just like with apps, you can legitmately say, “There’s a plugin for that!”

I have a short list of free plugins that I like to install for all my blogs. One of them (the Amazon Affiliate Link Globalizer plugin) you don’t need to install until you sign up for an Amazon Associates account – after you finish your 30 blog posts.

Install These WordPress Plugins

  1. Yoast SEO; this one will generate a sitemap (which we’ll use in the Google Analytics section) and allows you to enter your target keyword and edit your search engine snippet at the bottom of the post. It also gives you pointers on keyword density and such, although I don’t usually pay too much attention to their suggestions. In fact, I just use the target keyword (quit my job and work online, for example) naturally throughout the post as it makes sense. We’ll go over all that in Lesson 5.
  2. Spam Honey Pot by Matthew Turland; this plugin does an impeccable job of stopping spam comments in their tracks.
  3. Updraft Plus Backup/Restore; it’s always a good idea to have a backup of your blog. Your web host can usually help restore your blog to a previous state if you have an oops moment or if it somehow gets infected with a virus or hacked. Don’t count on it, though. Always have your own workable backup. Before updating to a new version of WordPress and every once in a while just because, I like to run a backup of my blogs and email a copy of the backup to myself.
  4. WP Old Post Date Remover by Ben Meredith; this plugin removes the dates from your blog posts after the number of days you specify. The dates get removed off the blog post itself and they stop getting displayed in the Google search results. This helps to keep your content looking fresh and upkeep the evergreen image – just like I mentioned with permalinks. I set my dates to get removed after 365 days. Just make sure you’re writing blog posts that don’t get outdated too quickly. Don’t write tech reviews or about the latest fashion styles, for example, because the second you publish the post, it will be on its way to being obsolete.
  5. Amazon Affiliate Link Globalizer by Attila Gyoerkoes, Markus Goetz (Woboq); wait to install this one until you have all 30 blog posts published and you have already signed up for Amazon Associates. This plugin links to the A-FWD webservice and gloablizes your Amazon links so that the person clicking on the links is redirected to the correct Amazon site for their country.

How to Set Up Google Analytics and Google Search Console

You will need to get Google Analytics set up so you can see your blog’s traffic stats. Integrating Google Search Console helps make it more transparent and convenient to see which keyword phrases you’re ranking for. You then won’t have to go to two different pages to see everything.

Google Analytics Set Up

You can use a plugin like MonsterInsights to set up Google Analytics on your blog, but I prefer doing it manually. You might prefer MonsterInsights. I suggest reading through this blog post written by MonsterInsights to determine which method you prefer. They have step-by-step instructions on how to do it both ways.

How to Link Google Search Console with Google Analytics

In this article, Google explains how to link (associate) your Google Search Console data so that it’s viewable from within Google Analytics. It’s super handy.

As you can see in the following screenshot of a top secret niche blog I started about 5 months ago, if you go to Acquisition > Search Console > Queries you can see which keywords you’re ranking for, how many clicks they’re getting, and a whole bunch of other useful data.

Keep in mind, you won’t see anything here for quite some time. Eventually, something like this is what you can expect (and yes, this blog is still growing and hasn’t achieved its optimal traffic yet!) I’m just giving you an example so you don’t think I’m full of sh**.

Submit a Sitemap to Google Console

You should have installed the Yoast SEO plugin. If you did, you will have a sitemap available at yourdomainname.com/sitemap_index.xml that you can submit to Google so they will acknowledge your blog’s existence and start indexing its pages… so you can start showing up in search results!

To get your sitemap submitted, do the following:

Go to https://yourdomainname.com/sitemap_index.xml to make sure it’s there. In my case, I went to https://quitthisjob.com/sitemap_index.xml. Yours will look something like this:

yoast sitemap example

Highlight and copy only the sitemap_index.xml part of the URL.

Now, go to the Google Search Console and navigate to Index > Sitemaps as shown in the following screenshot:

yoast sitemap - submit to google search console

Paste or type the sitemap_index.xml part of the URL into the ‘Add a new sitemap’ section and press ‘Submit’. That’s it! In a few minutes, the status should chance to ‘Success’ and you’re done.


Add Legal Disclaimer to Footer or Side Widget

You’re not monetizing your blog yet, but you might as well get this part over with. Add the necessary legal language to the footer or in a side widget. I like putting it in the footer because it’s out of the way.

Anyone who signs up for and distributes Amazon Associates links must identify as an Amazon Associate.

If you will also be collecting personal data (names, email addresses, IP addresses, birthdates, etc) then you also need a Privacy Policy. However, if you just provide Amazon affiliate links, then you just need the disclaimer. This is not a substitute for legal advice, however, and you should seek out legal advice to validate everything in this section.

More info here and here too.


Create a Quick About Widget or About Page

Writing a quick blurb about yourself with a picture of you engaging with your niche somehow gives your blog a nice personal touch. I always do this for all my blogs.

For my blogs outside of the make money online niche (which would be all of them except this one) I do actually post a real picture of myself. Most of the time I just do it as a side widget that appears on the right side of each blog post above any ads.

I highly recommend you do the same from day one so you don’t have to deal with it later!


Why is Lesson 4 So Long?!?

Alright, I do believe that’s all I have for you for this lesson about how to choose a domain name and purchase web hosting. Choosing a domain name was one of the first steps that allowed me to quit my job and work online, but definitely not the whole story.

I didn’t intend for this lesson to be so nauseatingly long, but let me briefly explain what happened:

Originally, I published this lesson after stopping at the How to Buy a Domain Name and Web Hosting Account section. I then went on to write Lesson 5 about how to write and format your blog posts.

After I had both posts published for a couple of days, I realized I omitted a very important step between the two lessons! For SEO reasons, I didn’t want to change Lesson 5 to Lesson 6 and put all this how to install WordPress and how to set up Google Analytics info as Lesson 5. I decided to add it to the end of Lesson 4 here.

As you can tell, I’m not a smooth-talking internet marketing guru who has a $1999 course all planned out. I just want you to spill my guts to you for free so you can quit your job and work online. I’m a one-woman show. Please excuse the sloppiness. 🙂

This lesson has been wordy, for sure, but no one can say I don’t try to help you out for free.

Be sure to join me in Lesson 5 where we go over how to write and format your blog posts. It’s going to be a doozy! See you there.

Janet Smith

My name is Janet Smith and I'm the author of the 2009 bestselling SEO ebook Nomad's Guide to Make Money Online. I'm also a former student of SEO legend, Grizzly Brears and have spent time training with John Limbocker from SEO Dominators. A lot has changed in the make money online world since 2009. Because I know many people who need help escaping their crappy jobs, I've decided to emerge from the shadows and share my up-to-date knowledge here for free. Don't ask me why. Just follow the directions in my free blog posts. This blog is a labor of love! There will be no $1999 useless, shiny objects here. I HAVE NOTHING TO SELL YOU because I make money online using the same techniques taught in this blog.

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