Traveling is an exciting and enriching experience that allows people to gain insights from the places they visit and the new people they meet. It is for this reason that many travelers have decided to start a personal blog which enables them to share their enjoyable experiences and lessons learned. Some have also committed themselves to share useful tips that travelers can apply wherever they go to avoid problems.
But while traveling may be fun, blogging is another story. This activity requires patience, perseverance and an interest to write regularly for one’s blog to provide their target audience with fresh content.
So how do you start and what do you need to start a travel blog that people can turn to moving forward?
The first step you need to take is to choose a blogging platform that you’re comfortable with. WordPress is the most commonly used today but another alternative is Blogger by Google. Both are user-friendly and free to use. Get to know each of them so you are aware of their features and differences and decide which one to use.
Blog and domain name
The next step is to create a name for your travel blog. When deciding on this part, do think of a name that’s short, easy to recall and travel-related. It can be something related to your journey or a specific destination you want to focus on. You don’t have to use the word travel in the main blog name but you can use it in the sub-title which can be a short description of what your site is all about. This way, your target audience will know that your blog is all about travel.
If you want to self-host your blog, you should also come up with a domain name. This is the name that will show on your blog URL or the link that will display on the address bar. It may be the same one as your blog name or it can be slightly different depending on what’s available at your hosting service.
Plugins are great to add to your blog as they can make your site more interactive. Some of the basic plugins you should consider using are those that improve your site’s SEO (SEO by Yoast and All in one SEO), prevent spam, provide contact forms, allow social media sharing and photo sharing as well as manage comments (Disqus and CommentLuv).
Quality and interesting content
Planning is very important when deciding on the content of your blog. Ask yourself what theme and message you want to convey to your target audience and how you can help them in their travels. Are you going to focus on a specific country or region or are you going to make your site a general travel blog? Do you want to share only your personal travel journey or you want to give tips that travelers can also use or solve their common problems.
In writing your content, make it as interesting and light as possible and use simple English that all kinds of people can easily understand. Create content that not only share your personal experiences but also provide useful information in line with the objectives of your blog. People would love to read blog posts that make them feel good or inspired and give them easy tips.
You also need to consider your brand. In this aspect, you can create a logo and tagline if you want to attract more people who love to travel.
In addition, you can provide links to travel sites you follow or booking sites that offer affordable options to travelers. These also could be sites dedicated to tour operators, accommodations or points and miles redemption such as Effectify.
Photos and videos
A travel blog could easily capture attention when it features large and top quality photos of people and places. As such, you need to incorporate in every blog post at least one photo that creates a huge impact when a reader sees it. Keep in mind that a picture is worth a thousand words so never take this aspect for granted.
Another great addition to any blog post is a video. It’s fairly easy to take videos these days by just using a smartphone hence, feel free to add a video of your travel in some of your blog posts. You can also add one on your home page to attract attention.