Successful Blog Blueprint (Part 2).

Successful Blog Blueprint

What Does It Take To Build A Successful Blog?

In this post, we portray the successful blog blueprint of everything thing it will take on the advanced level- the basics are outlined in this post- to grow a successful blog. 

At the end of this post, you'll have a behind-the-scenes look at all the tools, plugins, and services that almost every successful blogger uses.

Since people will particularly want to know about the plugins and tools that are used to run great blogs like WPBeginner and the likes of the one you are currently reading. 

This blueprint will be based on the best WordPress plugins and services to grow a successful blog. 

Recommended Reading:

What Powers Many Great Blogs?

Self-Hosted WordPress

WordPress.org if not the best, is one of the best blog publishing platforms. This platform powers a huge percentage of the top ten most earning blogs on the internet. As you can guess, this blog too is powered by the best host and publishing platform on the web.

There are two versions of WordPress, the WordPress.com and WorPress.org. This usually confuses the uninitiated :-). 

While there are many blogging platforms out there, the best recommendation will always be WordPress because of the full control and the flexibility you have over your website. Hence, the saying that with self-hosted, your site is your site!

Hosting- Who Should Host For Me?

We discuss this in detail here.

Just like the first time you thought of starting a small business in your neighborhood, the first thing you looked for is a suitable outlet or shop.

In the same fashion, every website must be hosted, and different websites come with different requirements.

There are thousands of web hosting providers out there in the market. 

So, here you'll get a comparison of popular hosts in the industry that powers millions of websites.

Security and BackUps

What will be your reaction to notice that one year's worth of intellectual property, sacrifice, and everything has been lost in just a twinkle of an eye?

I do not know for you, but that will be a lot of headaches if you understand.

So how do you avert this?

I use UpperDraft premium plugin to create automatic backups.

Below is a list of must-have tools to handle both backup and security on your website.

  • Login Lockdown – Login LockDown locks a user’s IP address who is trying to login to your WordPress backend after a pre-set number of failed login attempts. This helps you actively prevent brute-force login attacks. 
  • Sucuri – Sucuri: This plugin offers web monitoring and malware cleanup service. It helps enhance your WordPress website from cyber attacks. 
  • (Jetpack Backups) – Automatic backups are your first defense against any form of loss and security threats. 

Theme Selection and Look of Your Website

As a beginner, you may not be in the right budget to design a custom theme or look for your blog; nobody did in the initial stages. Though if you think you do too, there are qualified freelancers on queue to craft top-notch for you.

So how do you get the best looks for your website without going the custom designing path? We simply use already made themes.

Unfortunately, we do not have any recommendations for top theme designs to use for an elegant-looking blog, because that was covered in a different post.

Kindly browse the blog to see our recommended themes based on the niche and type of site you'll be building.

Style and Styling

  • Breadcrumb NavXT – We use Breadcrumb NavXT to add breadcrumb navigation showing the visitor’s path to their current location. 
  • Syntax Highlighter – We use Syntax Highlighter Evolved plugin to share code snippets in our posts. It is by far the best solution in our opinion. See our Syntax Highlighter review.
  • Compact Archives – We use the Compact Archives plugin to make our archives page prettier. It helps us compress the output of the month/year archive. 

Performance Optimization

  • MaxCDN – Max CDN (Content Delivery Network) speeds up your site and drastically reduces server load time. You need it.
  • W3 Total Cache – W3 Total Cache integrates MaxCDN, page caching and browser caching all for enhancing your website speed. 

Website Marketing Tools

  • Yoast SEO – Yoast SEO is a top-tier SEO plugin. It helps to improve general on-page SEO
  • OptinMonster – OptinMonster is one of the best lead generation tools for WordPress websites. OptinMonster is a popup builder that helps you get more subscribers and sales and ultimately grow your business. 
  • WPForms – This tool is developed by the WPBeginner team. It can power all types of contact forms and any form-based lead generation. Great stuff!
  • MailChimp & GetResponse – For designing, sending, and tracking beautiful email newsletters to readers, every blogger needs to build an email list, and this can only be done with the services MailChimp & GetResponse provide. 

Monetization (Make Money Blogging)

  • ThirstyAffiliates – to efficiently manage all of your affiliate links.
  • Site Kit by Google - is a one-stop solution for WordPress users to use everything Google has to offer to make them successful on the web.

Part 1: 15 Steps To Building A Successful Blog

Recommended Reading:

What Happens Behind the Scenes...

Every showroom has a workshop. There are several tools, plugins, and custom code snippets that run behind the scenes.

  • Members – (For membership sites). This plugin allows you to add new roles and limit content permissions by the category of users.
  • WP Mail SMTP – We use it to make sure our WordPress emails are getting delivered to the inbox.
  • Excerpts for Pages – provides a custom code snippet to display excerpts for your posts and pages.
  • Edit Flow – Used to edit the flow to manage our editorial workflow.
  • Advanced Custom Fields - Advanced Custom Fields adds custom fields into WordPress posts.
  • Post Types Order – This plugin has a drag-drop interface that lets you easily order your posts beyond the default WordPress provisions.
  • Random Post Redirect – redirects users to a random post in WordPress if it finds /random/ at the end of the URL.
  • Title and Nofollow for Links – to add a title and no-follow fields to insert link popup in WordPress.
  • Restore Image Title – to add a title attribute to the images on WordPress posts.

Commenting

  • Akismet – Akismet will be the soldier you use to combat comment SPAM. Akismet lets us focus on writing quality content rather than moderating SPAM comments :-). 
  • No Self Pings – To stop sending pingback notifications when linking to our posts by WordPress from. 
  • Subscribe to Comments Reloaded – Enables users/visitors to subscribe to comments to get email notifications when there is a new comment on the post. 

Part 1: 15 Steps To Building A Successful Blog

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