Although blogs haven’t been around all that long, less than 25 years as of this writing, in technology years they are getting pretty old.
Here’s A Brief History of The “Blog.”
It’s generally agreed that the very first blog appeared in 1994. It was the brainchild of Justin Hall, a student at Swarthmore College. He created what he called a “personal homepage.” The term blog hadn’t been coined yet. That happened three years later in 1997 with the term “weblog,” a term that has been attributed to Jorn Barger. His weblog was called “Robot Wisdom.” We’re in 2018 now. It’s hard to believe that “weblog” came along 21 years ago.
Programmer Peter Merholz shortened the term to “blog” in 1999.
Early blog sites were inefficient and clunky, until also in 1999 the Blogger platform came into existence. Blogger was started by Evan Williams and Meg Hourihan, who both worked at Pyra Labs. Blogger opened blogging to the masses.
Since then, blogs have exploded on the internet. According to one source, there were a grand total of only 23 blogs on the internet in 1999. By 2006 that number had exploded to 50 million. I imagine that the number is still growing.
Someone might wonder, “Do people still blog?”
The short answer is YES! Blogging is alive and well, although it has gone through and continues to go through change and innovation. There are microblogs now, tumblogs, and more. Examples of those kind of blogs are Twitter, Tumblr, and Posterous.
The standard blog isn’t the only thing around anymore.
Do People Still Read Blogs?
A quick look at just about any political, religious, or opinion website wil confirm that yes, people still read blogs. It also confirms that people are still writing them. if people didn’t read them, people wouldn’t be writing them.
My own experience is illustrative. I have at least 7 political websites that i like to browse, since I”m a political junkie. These sites are basically repositories for political bloggers to post to. I also read a few sports blogs, and a couple of gardening blogs. I’ll bet you’re the same. I’ll bet you have your favorite sites that you like to visit and read the blogs of your favorite writers.
Maybe someday I’ll be one of your favorite writers. I thing that’d be pretty cool.
Why Do People Write Blogs?
There are as many reasons why people write blogs as there are bloggers, but some of the main reasons are:
- To express an opinion on just about any subject
- To provide information on any and every subject
- To socialize with others
- To sell a product or products (to earn an income)
- To recruit others to your opinion or your side
There are a lot more, I’m sure. Me? I blog to earn an income. I’ve worked the 9 to 5 grind, the shift work, and more. I’ll clarify why I’m now blogging for a living in a few minutes.
Why Do People Read Blogs?
Again, everyone has their own reasons. Some are:
- To stay informed
- To learn other’s opinions
- To find reviews of products
- To get answers to questions
- To keep up with social happenings
- To choose which opinion or side to be on
I read blogs for pretty much all the above reasons. Like I said earlier, I have my favorite sites that I read regularly. I’m sure that there are a ton of other sites that I would read too if i knew they were there.
Here’s an example. On of my favorite political writers is a man named Kurt Schlichter. He writes for Townhall.com. I can expect to find his articles posted every Monday and Thursday, like clockwork. His brand of snark and humor skewers those who he considers the opposition. You may not like his type of humor, but I do.
So, Blogging Is Alive And Well, And So Are Blogs
Now to expand on my statment earlier that I’m blogging to earn an income. I “worked for a living” for close to 40 years and two full careers. When I retired, I didn’t want to stop earning money, although my retirement income was decent. It wasn’t anywhere near what I wanted to have though.
Money in and of itself isn’t much. It’s the lifestyle you can buy with it that’s important. Being retired, my income is fixed, and it’s a bit lower than it was when I worked. I didn’t want to go back to work part time. I’m done with having a boss.
I decided that it was the ideal time to start my own business. I didn’t want to un-retire myself though, and get stuck in a store or something all day. I wanted a business that didn’t have employees, didn’t have set hours, didn’t rely on a set location, and that would make money even when I was sleeping.
Enter affiliate marketing. I didn’t know anything about it until last year. I found out about it while surfing the web. If you don’t know what it is, basically affiliate marketing connects customers who are already looking for a product with that product.
Blogging is the main platform for affiliate marketing. Bloggers enter into affiliate agreements with businesses that have products to sell, and the bloggers market those products on their blogs. When a customer purchases a product found by clicking on a link that was in a blogger’s post, the customer gets the product, and the blogger earns a commission. Pretty simple, right?
An affiliate marketer can market products without having to stock inventory, deal with refunds, bill customers, etc. Rather than sell products out of inventory and make a small profit, a blogger can earn a commission selling someone else’s product.
Is Affiliate Marketing Easy?
It’s not hard, but it requires effort and persistence. And there’s a learning curve.
Remember, in 2006 there were 50 million blogs on the internet. They weren’t all out to earn an income, but a lot of them were. Competing with that many other bloggers requires some specialized knowledge and training.
Let’s suppose you want to start a blog and earn an income with affiliate marketing.
Do you know how to find affiliates to sign up with?
Do you know how to start your blog? How to set up your website?
Do you know how to get your blog ranked on the first page of Google, Yahoo, or Bing?
Do you know how to choose a niche, your area of expertise, that you will use to attract readers?
There are a whole bunch more “Do you” questions, but the ones above are enough to get started. That brings up the question, “If I want to be a blogger and earn an income, where do I go to get the training I need to succeed?
There are several websites that offer training on affiliate marketing and blogging. One of the best is called Wealthy Affiliate. It’s been in business for 15 years and is approaching 1 million members. The Wealthy Affiliate training is unsurpassed on the web, and has the bonus of letting anyone interested sign up and start for FREE!
The Wealthy Affiliate community is a group of like-minded people, all of whom are working toward financial freedom through blogging, and all of whom are willing to answer questions and help new members along.
That’s how I got started. I read a blog post that offered a link to Wealthy Affiliate, and I clicked on it. The sign-up was free, just like they promised, and the starter lessons were free too. Everything was legitimate, above board, and tailored for success.
It didn’t take me long to see the value of the Wealthy Affiliate platform, and I bought in to the premium membership about a month after my initial sign up. I haven’t regretted it since. This blog is the product of my training.
If you are looking for the same thing, there’s room for you in Wealthy Affiliate too. I’d be happy to welcome you to the community. The banner below links you to the sign up page. You can read my review of Wealthy Affiliate here.
Thanks for reading my post. I hope it wasn’t too long or boring. I’d appreciate any comment you might have. Just leave it below.