Are you a passionate traveler who loves to share your experiences and adventures? Do you have advice, tips and ideas for others who want to learn more about travel or embark on their own journeys?
There are countless individuals out there who have built up wildly successful travel blogs, which are even bringing in enough income so they can become full-time travelers!
Travel blogging is a busy and ever-growing space, with many people trying to make it big as a successful blogger. There are also countless articles and posts out there trying to instruct people on how to start their own travel blog. However, much of them are the same, but what you need to do is be unique and stand out from the crowd.
Luckily, you’ve landed in the right place. This is the complete guide to creating a successful travel blog, from getting your website started, to creating effective and engaging content, to increasing readership and followers, to monetizing and earning an income from your blog. Everything you need to know to get started (and lots of travel blogging tips) lies below!
Getting Started: Set Up Your Website and Blog
Basically, the first thing you’ll need is an idea of what exactly you want your blog to be about. Sure, you love to travel, but try to narrow down into a particular niche instead. You have a better chance of being discovered and gain higher readership if you’re targeting a specific audience rather than just any traveler in general. For example, solo female travelers, or touring Asia, or traveling with kids, or backpacking.
The next thing to organize is a name. What do you want your blog to be called? What do you want to be known as? Try and pick something creative, distinct, memorable and uniquely representative of you. It’s also a good idea to check whether the URL is not taken by someone else already, and that the corresponding social media accounts are also available.
Once you’ve picked a name, you’re ready to create the blog! Check out our page on best web hosting to find a provider to host your website, and pick a platform you want to use to help create the site itself, such as WordPress, Blogger, etc.
After these steps are complete… now to the fun part! It’s time to actually bring your vision for your travel blog to life – from the design and theme to the content and blog post themselves.
Design Makes a Difference
Have you ever come across a website that looks old-fashioned, poorly organized or has hard to read text all over the place? Chances are you never went back and didn’t even stick around for long in the first place. The design of your travel blog makes a surprisingly significant difference to people’s first impression of you and what you’re sharing. Stick with clean, attractive themes without jarring colors or patterns. Make sure the fonts you use are easy to read and appropriately sized (not too tiny and not overly large).
The images you use throughout your blog also make a difference to people’s overall perception of it. If you’re using many of your own photos, it might be worth investing in a high-quality camera so that your photography and images are crisp, clear and high resolution.
What Should You Post? Top Tips and Content Essentials
There a couple of key pages you’ll want to have on your travel blog, to come across as professional and thorough! An About page is crucial to give new readers a brief insight into who you are, what the blog is about, and why they should stick around and subscribe! A separate Getting started page is also useful, where you can link all your top posts that you can recommend to people who have just arrived, but this can be combined with the About page if you prefer. A Categories page is an effective way of helping people stick around, as it allows them to narrow down on certain topics that they’re genuinely interested in. This also acts as an interesting indicator to help inspire you for future content, depending on what people are commonly clicking through to!
In terms of the types of content you should publish on your travel blog, it’s important to keep in mind why people are visiting your site in the first place. Are they coming to read about your personal experiences traveling to particular locations around the world? Maybe! Or perhaps they’re coming to gain tips and advice for their own upcoming trips.
In general, it’s better to write in a style which aims to help the reader get valuable and useful takeaways from your posts. This incentivizes them to subscribe and become followers, rather than dropping by only once and never coming back. At the same time, it’s particularly important to include personal anecdotes and entertaining tales, as this is what makes people follow you as a brand and as a person, rather than your blog just becoming a bland reference site.
Additionally, pick topics, styles of writing and even post inclusions that will make your blog unique. Perhaps you have a video montage of your experiences in a particular country that you’re writing about and you can include. Or maybe you can put together a PDF printable list of plane travel essentials for people to download at the end of your post. Alternatively, you might like to use a conversational, casual style of writing, or you may prefer to keep your posts jam-packed with useful facts and tips. Whatever your preferences are, do not simply try and copy what other bloggers are doing.
Complement Your Blog with Engaging Social Media
In today’s modern age, basically everyone is on social media. Staying active on social media is essential if you really want to grow a popular and successful travel blog. Engage with your followers while sharing funny, useful and interesting content. There are tools available to help you automate and schedule posts for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others.
Social media plugins are also available to integrate directly into your site, whether it’s an Instagram feed of photos in your sidebar, or share buttons on the top and bottom of every post, making it quick and easy for people to share your content with their family and friends.
Making the Money – Monetization Methods
The age-old question arises – how do you make money with a travel blog? It’s actually surprisingly simple! (Once you know the tricks of the trade.)
AdSense – one of the simplest ways of earning a passive income via your travel blog is through advertisements. These don’t have to be overwhelming, in-your-face pop-ups that deter uses from ever returning, but instead they can be more subtle, well-placed in your website layout and show relevant content to users who see them. One way of achieving this out of the box is to use Google AdSense. The more visitors you get on your blog, the more ad income you can potentially earn!
Affiliate marketing – this is when you earn a profit when people purchase goods or services via a link that they clicked on from your site. Amazon Associates is a good place to start, for example if you want to share your favorite travel gear! Other companies and businesses have their own affiliate programs you can sign up for. Then it becomes as simple as sharing links on your site with compelling reasons why you love particular brands.
Work with brands – as you build up more readers and followers, you can start approaching brands to enquire to partner or work with them. You could offer to share your experiences with them in exchange for sponsorship or discounts. Be prepared to negotiate, and also to face many rejections, that’s totally normal!
Create products – often taking place later in the blogging journey, it’s still something you can start thinking about now! By selling your own range of products, you can earn money from this as well. These products are the fruit of your imagination, whether you want to sell custom designed t-shirts and caps, or printables and e-books you’ve put together.
Overall, Keep it Real
One of the most important tips for anyone wanting to run a successful travel blog is to be authentic. It’s clear to readers if you’re faking it and copying content from elsewhere, and it’s definitely not a good look if you’re just stuffing articles with ads and referral links. Be honest with your stories and advice, and be true to yourself as that’s what will set you apart from every other blogger out there!
Additionally, understand that it takes work. Despite what some bloggers may make it seem like, it’s not as simple as just putting up a site, making some posts, and watch the followers and cash roll in. It takes effort, dedication, persistence and a whole lot of passion! Put into practice these travel blogging tips in order to help create a successful travel blog, and it will undoubtedly pay off. If it’s something you enjoy to spend time on, and if sharing your travel experiences is what you love to do, then just get started!