So you want to be a fashion blogger, eh? I have some good news and some bad news…
Just kidding, it's only good news. And the good news is that starting a fashion blog is extremely easy (and almost free).
Now running the blog and getting people to read it… well, that takes a little more work. But the first step is getting started, and you can do that right now, in the next 10 minutes (seriously).
But first, why start a fashion blog?
Starting this site – TheModestMan.com – was one of the best decisions I've ever made in my entire life.
It literally changed my life by giving me a sense of freedom and flexibility I didn't know was possible.
Before starting a blog, I worked in a pretty normal 9 to 5 job. I didn't really love what I was doing, and my financial trajectory was very limited.
Now, I have an asset that generates over $10k per month revenue and enough profit to live pretty much anywhere.
I can work remotely, wherever and whenever I want to. Much of my income is passive, meaning it doesn't require direct input from me (i.e., I'm no longer trading time for money).
My work or brand has been featured in Esquire, Men's Health, Huff Post, Fortune Magazine, Art of Manliness and more.
More importantly, this blogging journey has led to some incredible friendships and connections over the past few years.
So, why start a fashion blog? Because it might give you freedom you've been craving. It might lead to financial independence. It might help you forge new relationships.
It might just change your life.
There are basically three steps:
- Get a domain name and hosting
- Install WordPress
- Choose a “theme”
Let's look at each of these steps in a little more detail.
If you're serious about fashion blogging, I highly recommend getting your own hosting plan and installing WordPress yourself. It's not very hard – I promise.
Step 1: Domain Name and Hosting
This might be the coolest part of this process. You get to pick a name for your style blog! No pressure here, you can always change it, but you should try to pick a winner.
Make a list of 10-20 potential names, then use the Bluehost domain name finder to see if they're available. If not, no worries! You can always add a modifier (an extra word) to the domain name.
For example, if you want awesomestyle.com but it's already taken, you could try awesomestyledude.com.
Not my best work, but you get the point. You could also get awesomestyle.co if the dot com isn't available. It's not a huge deal these days, as many dot coms have been bought up by domain flippers (annoying, I know).
Honestly, the name isn't all that important. It just feels really important. It's best not to get hung up on this step. Just pick something and run with it.
On to hosting…
If your website is a car, hosting is your parking space. It's a little corner of the internet where you get to keep all of your amazing blog posts and fashionable photos.
It's important to pick a good hosting company so you never have to worry about someone else parking in your spot.
There are tons of hosting companies, but the best one for beginner fashion bloggers is Bluehost. It's what The Modest Man ran on for four years before moving to WP Engine (after traffic really picked up).
I love WP Engine too, but it's way more expensive than Bluehost and totally unnecessary for a new blog. Trust me on this one. Your money will be better spent on camera gear and sweet outfits.
Bluehost customer support is great (even thought you probably won't need it), and it's super affordable (like the cost of one cup of coffee each month). Save yourself some time, skip the research, and go with Bluehost.
Step 2: Install WordPress
After you get your hosting account and domain name squared away, you need to install WordPress. Sticking with the car metaphor, think of WordPress as your website's engine.
And it's the most reliable engine ever built. In fact, WordPress works so well that over 20% of websites on the entire internet are powered by it.
So yeah, look no further. WordPress is where it's at, and it's easy to install from your hosting account.
Step 3: Dress It Up (Pick a Theme)
You can't have a plain old boring website. After all, it's a style blog. It's got to look good, like you! The easiest way to make your blog look dapper is to use something called a theme.
A website theme is like the body of a car. It doesn't change the frame or engine, but it determines how it looks. Think of it as your website's outfit. It can be changed pretty easily, without changing the bones or underlying structure.
The best WordPress themes, in my modest opinion, are from StudioPress. They're minimal, clean and modern.
Plus, they're super fast, totally secure and optimized for search engines (very important for any fashion blogger).
This site is running on a custom StudioPress theme, but for a long time I used one of their ready made themes, and it looked great right out of the box. Plus, they're easy to customize by changing colors, fonts, etc., no coding required.
If you're not ready to pay for a theme, check out the official directory of free WordPress themes (including some great fashion blog themes).
Time for a selfie!
Congrats! You're the proud new owner of a style blog, which makes you a style blogger. Time to publish some selfies and share your thoughts about what to wear with what and when to wear it.
But that raises a question…
What do you do now?
When you first get your site up and running, you're going to be tempted to play around with plugins, widgets, colors, fonts and other “branding” elements that, to be brutally honest, don't matter at this stage in the game.
My advice is to focus on one thing: great content.
You need some written content and nice photos for your new site. Trust me, this stuff is way more important than figuring out which social media buttons look best on your sidebar.
Here are some ideas for what to write about first (the first pages you should publish):
Your About Page
Most first time visitors to this site check out my about page. It's like your online dating profile: it needs to describe who you are and what your blog is all about.
More importantly, it should tell your visitor what they're going to get out of your site. Why should they stick around? Why should they subscribe? What makes you special?
Don't be shy here…it's time to give them your pitch!
Your First Post
I know you have a couple of beliefs about fashion that you want to share. Maybe it's a philosophy you use to put together outfits. Maybe it's a mistake you see other people making that you want to help them avoid.
Write about that! This is the kind of content that makes you unique and that will set you apart from other bloggers.
You can also start with product reviews. Think about the top 5-10 garments or accessories you simply can't live without, and write detailed reviews for those products.
Your goal here is to help people who are thinking about buying these products make the best purchasing decision.
You could probably write 10-20 really great reviews right now, without doing any research!
Show Me the Money
When can you start making money from your fashion blog? Honestly, I wouldn't even think about that if you're just getting started.
Focus on great content and building an audience. Read up on basic SEO best practices. Develop a daily writing habit, and keep hitting the “publish” button.
Once you start getting some traffic, then you can start monetizing your blog.