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Writing is something I’ve always enjoyed doing UNTIL I had to do it on topics that were hard to write about. But when the money in the bank comes from your writing, you figure it out.
From pool toys to wedding jewelry to search engine optimization to bare root trees, I’ve written blog posts about things many haven’t heard of. But becoming a successful travel blogger is where my passion is so that’s where I’ve focused over the past few years.
I wanted to not only be a successful travel blogger but to earn a nice income from doing it. I love to travel but would that be enough? Would writing travel guides be difficult? Should I do this full time or part-time?
What did I need to do to be truly successful and see the deposits into my bank account every month? I not only wanted to have one of the best travel blogs, I wanted to provide great content as well.
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My friends have always told me I was a gifted writer. That is all fine and dandy but the proof of success at least to me is getting paid NICELY for what you do. AND enjoying it while you do it.
I decided travel blogging is what I planned to do for the rest of my life. Yes it would take the time and effort into doing it right, but it would be worth it. And imagine all the travel experiences I would get to enjoy while doing it!
First would be deciding on my domain name. I tossed this around for several days before deciding it would be a good idea to use my name as the name of my site. Why? I have strong a strong social network in both travel and fitness online along with my business content writing.
I recommend you head to Hostgator for both your domain and hosting. They are very affordable, and you will have everything in one acccount. This is where you will get information: Hostgator
If you choose Hostgator, they can also help you set up your WordPress Blog. Keep in mind you need a WordPress account that you are able to be paid commissions. There are other options but the ones I mentioned above are what I use.
Now that I decided my blog name would be DeniseSanger.com, I started looking around at other successful travel blogs. What did it take to be a good travel blog that people would visit over and over? The first year is the toughest as you figure out the best ways to reach your customer base.
I think the most important thing is to write about what you enjoy the most. For me, it’s exploring new beaches. Well pretty much any type of water in the United States and world. Springs, lakes, rivers, and the oceans and Gulf.
Maybe road trips are more your style? There is room in the industry for all types of travel options. Your personal experience is what will resonate the most with your specific nice and clients.
A great way to get started is by focusing on travel tips. You can niche it down further. For example, travel tips for female travelers. Or traveling with your family in North Carolina.
My travel blog focuses on my personal stories as I travel throughout Florida and the United States. I am also 60 years old and tend to relate to a lot of people in my age demographic particularly women.
When you provide great value and the best tips you can, your hard work will pay off as a professional travel blogger. As a content creator, you have to research search terms and keywords that your niche is searching for then provide that information.
There is a right way to do that and a wrong way to do that. Never copy information from your favorite travel blogs. You must write unique copy.
Take pictures of everything when traveling. You will not only use these photos on your blog, you will also use them on your social media. One of the best things I ever did was to snap away hundreds of pictures wherever I go.
The travel industry right now is reeling from first the pandemic and now inflation. It’s a great time to focus on local travel in your city. Ask for guest posts on your blog and do the same for other travel bloggers.
Take a look at new places you may not have visited yet. Grab a good friend and explore in your own backyard. It is also a good way for the local restaurants, hotels, and attractions to get to you as well.
Much attention is given to taking a world trip or heading to a popular destination. But often, people do not want to experience the same old over and over again. And that is a good thing.
That is where your expertise comes in. Providing your readers with the many things available that they may not have heard about helps you outrank other travel stories. In addition, it is also easier to rank in the search engines for terms that are not as highly competitive.
As an example, travel Florida or visit Florida are two highly competitive search terms. I choose to focus on product useful tips for the best places off the freeway.
Below are tips and resources to help you get started and become a SUCCESSFUL travel writer. If you don’t want to get paid for what you’re writing, these tips can still help you become a better writer.
- Take the time to learn your craft. Even though I’ve been writing my whole life, travel blogging had a learning curve for me. I wish I would have had access to the course I completed Travel Blogging Blastoff sooner than I did. Would have not only saved me time but would have eliminated major errors I made along my journey. Taking the time to invest in yourself will help you reach your version of the American Dream.
- Set a writing schedule and stick to it. If you want to become a top travel blogger or rank for your travel articles, you have to write. Writing is more than just sitting down at a computer and typing away. It takes time and research to write good content that people want to read. What I do when I know I’m visiting a place I plan to write an article about is take notes about every detail. This helps jog my memory about the trip and makes it easier to write a good, detailed article.
- Research. WHAT are people searching for? If people aren’t searching for what you’re writing about, you’re not going to get the traffic you need to be successful. Use Google Keyword Planner and take a look at what people are searching for. Here’s an example for the search term vacation ideas. You can see the terms searched 1,000 – 10,000 times per month:
- Think out of the box for your trips and adventures. Everyone assumes there are beautiful beaches in Florida or Jamaica but what else is there to do? (Dunns River and Falls) is AMAZING or how about the beautiful state forests in Florida that have amazing hiking trails like Lake Talquin. Florida isn’t all beaches.)
- Once you get in the writing groove, offer to guest post or blog on other sites. I not only write for local newspapers and websites, I also write and post for Medium, Linked In, Thrive and more. There are so many opportunities you simply have to look for them. The more you write, the more attention you bring to your blog.
- Use social media. Every single article I write whether it’s on my own travel blog or as a guest blogger, I post to my social media channels. You can see my large Facebook community here: I Love The Beach Trips. Focus on one social media channel at a time. The majority of my traffic comes from organic search, Facebook and Twitter, but I’m also on Pinterest, YouTube and Instagram.
- When you’ve gotten into a writing groove, spend time researching media outlets that feature travel. Find the ones you resonate the most with. For example, if you travel with your family you’ll want to look for outlets that focus on family, parenting, education, etc. Look at what they publish and see if your “voice” is a good fit.
So how do you earn an income? Some of the best travel bloggers easily earn over six figures a year. I am in that category when I pull all my variousl income streams together. That is how I have been able to become a full-time travel blogger.
Affiliate sales is by far the easiest and quickest way to monetize your blog. The ones I currently use are:
AWIN for Etsy and over 200 advertisers to choose from. You can sign up here: AWIN
Skimlinks. Super easy to use on your blog with its Chrome extension. Start for free here: Skimlinks
Amazon Associates. Amazon Associates does not pay the highest commission and also their cookie does not last as long as others. However, one you get someone to the Amazon platform, you earn commission on everything they purchase at their visit. Get more info here: Amazon
Google Adsense. When you insert a code into your blog, Google will show ads relevant to the content you write and the person that visits your site. I will be adding additional information on how to set this up in a different post.
I will be added more to this article so be sure to bookmark it!
I like to use Booking for booking not only my hotels, but my tickets and rental cars as well. Makes life so much easier with only having to log into one location for my information.
Be sure to grab my travel tips to save you time and money. You’ll also be entered into the weekly drawings.
Denise Sanger lives a life split between her love for fitness and her passion for travel particularly to the BEACH. Denise also has a love of marketing and lives in beautiful Suwannee County, Florida. You can find out more about Denise here: About Denise