The Complete Guide to Become a Travel Blogger in 2022

Monetization and Travel Affiliate Programs
Feb. 17, 2022
guide to start a travel blog

Blogging is becoming more and more popular with the rise of e-travel and social networks. Being a travel blogger has become a profession in its own, a very intriguing way of life that needs to be explored.

For travel content, the blog is a very practical tool that allows you to publish articles, photos, videos, so don't hesitate to get started!

Potential future travelers are above all looking for authenticity when they are interested in a destination, indeed, the testimonies that you bring them in your blog are there to reassure them and share a real experience that they will want to try by themselves. Blogging is a way to testify and to give details that are not mentioned elsewhere, a real proof of authenticity with the good and the bad sides honestly mentioned.

Who can become a travel blogger?

who can become a travel blogger

First of all, to become a travel blogger, you must of course be passionate about travel and discovering new places around the world, and sharing your experience by creating content around travel. There is no prerequisite to have, everyone can start in this activity as long as there is passion.

There are two categories of bloggers, the amateur bloggers, who share content as a hobby without being able or wanting to live from it. And there are professional bloggers who live from this activity and whose objective is to increase their popularity and develop their community.

Being a professional travel blogger includes first generating an income. Second, it means that you are planning a long-term vision and are able to provide a professional service to your readers and clients. There are very different types of travel bloggers, from a journalistic approach to writing more personal stories and accounts, choosing which approach you want to adopt, and being coherent in everything you write afterward.

If you are already active on social media (YouTube, Instagram, TikTok…) and you already have a small community, the travel blog can be an extension of your networks and a good opportunity to extend your popularity.

Your subscribers will be likely to become readers of your blog, and you will be able to share your articles more easily with your already existing community. This way, you will have less difficulty in getting your blog known in its early stages. An active presence on social media will make your blog more effective. Social media traffic to your blog is also an important part of search engine optimization (SEO), as it sends a social signal to Google that your site is popular and useful.

How to create a blog?

how to create a travel blog

Step 1: Choose a Name for your travel blog

Choosing a name is the first step in creating a travel blog. It should be catchy, clever and match your personality and most importantly be unique. In any case, make sure you choose a name that you think you'll still like years from now, as it's not really possible to change a website's name.

Check social media to see if the name is still available, and select a name that is not too long and can be used on several social networks (some have a character limit, so be careful).

If you have difficulties finding a name for your blog, go on Starterstory which suggests a lot of blog names and also has a name generator, something to inspire you!

Step 2: Find a web Hosting platform

There are a number of different options for creating your blog, from using a free platform to what is called "self-hosting". Self-hosting means that you have full control over your site, with your own domain name, instead of having your blog managed by a hosting site.

Wordpress for Travel Blogs:

We recommend going straight to self-hosting, for example using the world's most popular blogging platform: WordPress.

While this may seem complicated and difficult, there are many companies that will help you with everything from registering your domain to getting your site up and running. However, you can do it directly on WordPress if you choose this site to create your blog.

There are several self-hosted blog companies that are quite intuitive, it is important to choose one that is uptime, if your website goes down, it hurts your traffic and your reputation. Uptime should be 99.94% at least. Quick loading is very important for the audience's comfort and having good customer service to help you in your steps, Bluehost, Hostgator and Siteground are very popular and have a very efficient service.

WordPress includes SEO tools and social media sharing capabilities. Easy website design, easy domain registration, and secure hosting. Start with a modern website design and customize it with your brand, content and features.

You can also keep track of your blog activity with statistics that help you know what your readers like and how they found you.

With adaptable themes and apps available on any device, mobile or desktop, you and your blog visitors will enjoy a smooth, integrated experience on any device.

The design of the blog is very influential to attract readers, everything needs to be readable, well-organized, optimized and beautiful, so spend time on the design of the site. When visitors come to your blog, the first impression is very important. People get an idea in a few seconds of how much they can trust your site. A nice layout will make them stay and come back for more.

Don't hesitate to create a logo, it is often the first visual element that site visitors will see, so make it memorable. The logo should be unique, creative and attractive. Choose a design and colors that match your blog's identity.

WordPress is mostly used by experienced people, it requires a minimum of technical knowledge. The settings are not always easy to adjust, but with a little time you will be able to use the site. Many templates are available to customize your site so that it is aesthetically pleasing and organized the way you want, some are chargeable others are free, it's up to you to see what you want, each template can be customized and modulated according to your desires.

Wix for Travel Blogs:

Wix is another platform to create your blog, and more accessible to beginners. Choose a template and customize it, or answer a few questions and get a free site designed for you.

You can even add an online store and online reservations. You can always add features as your blog evolves.

Switch to the mobile editor to customize it even more, so that your blog is accessible on different devices.

Answer a few questions about your website, location and keywords and get a customized SEO plan to get found online by new users.

Wix accompanies you step by step to create your blog with tips and tricks adapted, and many other options are available.

Wix is an easy-to-use website editor that offers flexible designs. However, we do not recommend this option for a complex and large site.

WordPress allows you to create almost any type of site, but requires more technical knowledge. In the end, the choice between Wix and WordPress depends mostly on how much time you have to invest in the project.

Of course there are other platforms available to create your blog, WordPress and Wix are the most popular. But select the one that suits your blog’s needs.

How to differentiate yourself from other bloggers?

how to differentiate as a travel blogger

Becoming a blogger means that you have to share a bit of your daily life with your audience, it is essential to build your own identity that will help people identify with you. To be interested in a blog is to be interested in a story and in the person behind it, not to the point of revealing one’s private life, but it is important that people who read your articles can identify with you and recognize themselves in your words, which will give them even more desire to follow your experiences!

In addition, create original content, find a thematic and an original concept for your blog that will differentiate you from other competing blogs. It is a very popular field, so you must stand out with a new concept to not be one of the many travel blogs similar to each other, find the thing that makes the difference, it can be an original way to write or take pictures or focus on one aspect of the trip, rather than covering everything.

Personalize your blog as much as possible to make it unique and to your image.

Google My Maps is a Google Maps feature that allows you to create a personalized travel map that is super useful for planning a trip and share it on your blog. It's always useful for people to have a complete map to visualize themselves in space, so they can zoom in, zoom out, see your itinerary etc., all without having to go to another site. This software is very easy to use, here is a tutorial if you encounter difficulties doing your interactive map.

You can also create an interactive map using the Geo Mashup plugin on WordPress, WP Google Maps or Google Maps Widget.

Tips #1: Use WordPress Plugins and Widgets

wordpress for travel blogger

The plugins are easy to install and use. Plugins can help you improve things like layout, media quality, content linking, social media awareness, functionality, spam filtering, and increasing subscribers. Plugins are designed to make your blog more accessible and simpler to users.

From an SEO perspective, how well your blog is optimized, how easy it is to use, and how well users advocate for it (through shares, comments, and links) all affect your blog's chances of getting good results in Google's search pages.

  • Social Warfare is a plugin that helps you get more social media shares, with attractive social buttons added to your page. Being popular on Social Networks will have a huge impact on your SEO. The plugin includes attractive icons for all major social media sites, without slowing down your website.
  • Yoast is the original WordPress SEO plugin that helps you improve your site's SEO through a traffic light system. It looks at things like content, keywords, metadata, URLs and sitemaps to satisfy both users and search engines.

Photos represent a major part of a travel blog. So you want to make sure they are optimized and compressed properly to avoid bad loading times.

  • Compress and optimize image files, improve performance and increase your SEO ranking using Smush WordPress image compression and optimization.
  • Ewww Image Optimizer will easily optimize every image you upload to your media library. It saves you time and doesn't have to be done manually.
  • Make your travel pictures interactive using our Travel Pictures Web Plugin. You will be able to add a destination marker with descriptions and booking links to your best travel pictures.

It is important to build a mailing list for your blog. When you write and publish a new article, you want your readers to know about it. You want to build a list of followers who know your work and expect to receive your blogs in their mailbox. They're likely to be the ones who let others know about your work by sharing it.

  • Mailchimp for WordPress helps you grow your lists and write better newsletters through various methods. You can create attractive signup forms or integrate them with any existing form on your site, such as your comment, contact or order form.

WordPress' plugins also exist to help you lay out your blog posts:

We have already talked about the importance of a good design for your blog thanks to the templates you use. However, plugins are also available to help you layout your articles to contribute to the originality of your blog.

First step, you need to organize your page to make it both clear and attractive. Beyond the titles, the inserts, the checklists, the tables are all visual cues that will accompany the user in his reading.

  • To build engaging and understandable layouts, Elementor is your best ally. This WordPress plugin offers advanced features that are very easy to use: Adding new elements by simple drag and drop, free widgets like social networks or comments for example, pre-designed page templates to create your layout directly or to customize, a live preview of your content layout to adjust the presentation if needed and many other functionalities to discover.

Other plugins exist with different functionalities, such as Thrive Architect. You can also add plugins to modify the layout of your texts to give them more relief. If you are looking for a plugin capable of going into detail and ultra-customization, Advanced Editor Tools offers you all the possibilities you were dreaming of!

​​There are many plugins on WordPress that will optimize the interface of your blog so that users have no difficulty in finding information and also to give a wonderful design to your blog that will attract new visitors; so take the time to explore which plugins are most suitable for your blog.

Read more about the best Wordpress plugins for a travel blogger

Tips #2: Post consistently on Instagram

Instagram is a must-have tool for your travel blog, you have to dedicate time to it, a minimum of 3 posts per week is recommended.

You need to focus on your community and their expectations, what are the reasons that made them follow your blog and your Instagram account? Feed their creativity by encouraging your followers to generate content around your posts, you can create giveaways if it is relevant and encourage your community to share your posts.

Interactivity is very important to make your followers feel concerned and involved in the story of your account, this is especially possible in the stories mode thanks to the use of stickers.

Create a countdown (particularly useful before an event or a product launch for example), add an Emoji slider to evaluate the feeling of your community, allow users to ask you questions that you will answer later. There are several ways to get your community involved in your travel blog project.

How to drive traffic to my website ?

drive more traffic to my travel blog

Step 1- Work on your SEO

As said before, there is no prerequisite to become a blogger except the passion for travel. However, you will have to train yourself on some subjects. You have to increase your notoriety, but also manage your credibility. For that, you have the obligation to provide quality and optimized content. You must also master the rules of SEO (Search Engine Optimization). This means optimizing your writing and the content of your blog so that search engines rank it at the top of the list when Internet users make a search. Website security, marketing, brand image and many other things to learn to increase your blog’s popularity. Moreover, offering original content is mandatory to differentiate yourself from other blogs on the subject.

Write your articles well, make them easy for readers to read, with plenty of paragraph breaks, clear headings and links to other relevant content.

The regularity of writing your articles is very important to keep a certain popularity and especially to be well ranked by search engines, also your audience expects new content, so you must be able to satisfy them to keep their interest.

Step 2- Build a Community on Social Media

A blog alone is not enough to be known and is not enough to hope to make a living from it. You need to create a close relationship with your readers by using social networks to promote your blog. Indeed, social networks have become the most popular mode of advertising, so it is indispensable to be interested, whether it is Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or other, choose the social networks that match the image of your blog.

Which social media is the most suited for travel blogs and websites?

  • Facebook is the most known and used social network, if you want to target a large audience it is the ideal platform. To grow your Facebook page (without using paid ads), here are a few keys principles:
    • Invite your friends to like your page, that's the basis;
    • Encourage people to like your Facebook page from your blog
    • Publish quality and unique content: even if Instagram can be linked with Facebook, it can be interesting not to publish the same thing on both networks
    • Publish regularly but not all the time so that you don't deceive your fans

  • Instagram has become very popular in recent years, especially in the field of travel. If your content is mainly about photos, it is the ideal tool to share them and promote your blog. Keep in mind that it might be hard to drive traffic to your website from Instagram directly, user tend to like your post and keep scrolling

  • Pinterest is also great for photo content, it's a very visual platform. It allows you to share your interests by pinning photos found on the Internet. There are several uses of Pinterest for your travel blog: You can add Pin It buttons to your photos so that people can pin your photos or you can add a button for people to subscribe to your blog's dedicated page on Pinterest.

  • YouTube is ideal if you make videos, with a large audience, you can even monetize your videos. You can redirect your watchers from your videos to your travel blog

  • Twitter is ideal for customer service and discussion. It's a pretty useful network to dialogue and communicate in real time with people who follow the travel blog.

  • TikTok emphasizes authentic content rather than standardized and marketing publications. Its users like to film themselves while traveling and share their experiences on this social network. As a travel blogger, you can create opportunities for people to use TikTok to share videos of their trips that you can then repost. This is a great opportunity to increase your audience, gain awareness and animate your community in a fun way.

What you need to remember is that each social network has its assets and weaknesses, no need to register on all of them, use those that will boost your blog effectively. Each platform has a different audience and different interests, so don't publish the same content on each, analyze your audience to provide them with the best content.

Social media management is important for businesses, but it can take up much of your valuable time. As a startup or small business owner, you need to make the most of your time and find ways to be more productive, this is why there are tools available to make your work easier.

Social media tool #1: Use Hootsuite

Hootsuite is a leading social media management tool which takes the form of a dashboard and integrates feeds from different social networks like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest, it helps to manage all your social networks in one platform.

The tool has an intuitive editor to create content, with a preview of how the post will look. You have image and video libraries, an image editor and a video editor at your disposal. You can use the Auto Scheduler, which will automatically publish your content on the most relevant slots for your brand. In addition, Hootsuite has the following options: a monitoring function to follow the trending topics on social networks by creating personalized feeds, a statistical analysis function to measure the performance of its publications, a Hootsuite Ads service to simplify the management of its sponsored publications.

There are many software programs like Hootsuite that allow you to manage all your networks on one platform, it's up to you to see which one suits you best.

Social media tool #2: Use Repost

A great tool to repost existing content on Instagram is the Repost: For Instagram app for iOS or Reposta for Android. You can't repost photos or videos on Instagram without using a third-party app. Those two apps are very easy to use, you just have to copy the link of the post you want to repost, then it will appear directly on the repost app, you just have to put a description and publish, it will directly appear on your Instagram account!

Social media tool #3: Use Hashtag Expert

To get known more easily on social networks it is important to use hashtags, however, it is not always easy to find the right hashtags to put, for this use the Hashtag Expert app that will allow you to generate trendy hashtags related to your post, simply by entering a keyword, there are also categories of hashtags as the fashion or travel category. Once the generator has created your personalized hashtags, simply copy and paste them into your post description.

Step 3 - Track your performance with Google Analytics

It is essential to keep an eye on your social media statistics. If you notice that a platform isn't really working for you, don't feel like you have to be everywhere. You can focus on the best-performing social platforms and build your audience there.

By using both social media analytics and Google Analytics, you can determine how committed your audience is when they are online, as well as the traffic to your website generated by social media. You don't want to get too hung up on the stats on each of your posts, but pay attention to what kind of post works and what doesn't, it will save you time.

How to Monetize your Travel Blog ?

In order to make a living from travel blogging, you need to make yourself known and develop your network, for this advertising is a good solution.

Step 1- Safe earnings with Display Ads

Whether it is banner ads or pop-up ads, display advertising is omnipresent on the Web. Every Internet user is in contact with this type of advertising, regardless of the device used. By display marketing, or display advertising, we mean the online advertising market. This includes all graphic advertising formats such as videos, animations, pop-ups and banner ads. There are two important types of players in display marketing. On the one hand, there are the advertisers and on the other hand, the publishers. The advertiser is the company that invests in an advertising campaign to promote its product or service. Publishers are chosen after an analysis of the content and the target group in order to avoid distribution losses and to reach a more receptive audience.

Solution #1: Google Ads

Google Ads is a simple way to make money with your blog. You need to add a Google script to your blog and start displaying ads.

You will receive a commission every time a user clicks on an ad. These ads are called CPC (cost per click) and the price is set by the advertiser.

Solution #2: Criteo ads

Criteo Ads is another leader in media marketing, with the same principle as Google Ads, and has an in-depth knowledge of the behaviors and purchase intentions of Internet users, so there is a greater chance that they will click on the proposed ads because they are products that interest them beforehand, and therefore you will earn money more easily.

Step 2 - Grow with Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a system in which you recommend a product to your community, and if someone buys that product by clicking on the special tracking links you provide, you receive a commission.

Affiliate marketing is the easiest way to make money because you can promote a wide variety of products from big companies like Amazon for example. Try to focus on products that are related to your blog and that are relevant to your audience, do not talk about products that have nothing to do with the spirit of the blog just to make money, this strategy will endanger the trust of your readers, remember to remain authentic even when it comes to selling.

Partnerships/ collaboration

You will be able to organize paid partnerships that will make you collaborate with brands. At the beginning, you will canvass professionals to propose your services. Later, if your work is successful, they will ask you to present their brand, product or service thanks to the popularity you will have generated.

Working with brands and professionals means that you will have to provide high quality work, but also select the brands you want to work with, the reputation of your blog depends on it. Your blog and your networks reflect your image, and you must be authentic in everything you do.

Step 3 - Increase your revenue with Guest Posting

Guest posting or guest blogging is a technique to animate your blog that allows you to benefit from the notoriety of a guest author and attract new readers. More precisely, a blogger can invite a person who works in the same field, so that the latter can produce an article presenting his vision of his job, advice etc. This is free of charge. The guest blog is based on a principle of reciprocity, that is to say, that guest blogging will allow the blogger to feed his blog with content while diversifying his production and by appropriating the notoriety of the expert. On his side, the expert will benefit from the visibility of the blog, which can bring him new visitors.

This is a real time-saver, especially if you can't update your content regularly. It is also a way to diversify publications and build a database of quality articles.

So don't hesitate to get in touch with other travel bloggers who practice guest posting, it can be very beneficial for you.

Step 4 - Invest on Backlinking

A great way to promote your blog is to write articles for other sites with the technique of backlinking. This is a particularly effective way to promote yourself as an expert on a topic.

When you contact a fellow blogger, make sure they accept guest posts and politely approach them with your proposal. Don't send a generic email pitch to hundreds of bloggers and expect a positive response - instead, send a personalized email that will get the blogger's interest, and you'll likely get a more favorable response. This technique allows you to promote other bloggers, who will do the same for your blog on their site.

How much does a travel blogger earn?

Most bloggers don't make a lot of money, as few manage to make a full living from it, it requires a lot of work and collaboration, they often work for free in exchange for visibility and recognition from their readers, this is usually how you start to gain notoriety.

For a media content creation operation, whether it is an article, photo or video, the remuneration of travel bloggers varies according to their notoriety, the quantity of content to be produced, and the negotiation capacity of the travel blogger. Indeed, be aware of your potential and do not work in exchange for advertising! All work deserves a fee, as a self-employed entrepreneur, do not hesitate to negotiate.

You will make money based on the traffic you get, the monetization methods you use, and the work you put in. If you want to make money from blogging, you will have to work hard and put in a lot of time and money. Some bloggers start making small amounts of money soon after they start their blog. Others struggle to get their blog off the ground, it's very random. However, those who work tirelessly and stick to a planned strategy are the most likely to see encouraging results early on.

Many successful bloggers earn six, even seven figures, but these are very high numbers, so don't expect to earn that much, it takes a lot of time and effort to reach this amount of benefit. You might make a few hundred dollars (or a few thousand) a month after a year of blogging. It really depends on all sorts of factors.

What is the daily life of a travel blogger like?

the life of a travel blogger

The daily life of a travel blogger depends on if he/she is traveling. When working for a client, there is a lot of content creation, research and cross-referencing of information with deadlines to respect. It is necessary to have a good organization and a good rigor of work to remain really productive.

Whereas, when you are working completely alone at the beginning of your blog, you need to set a schedule and get organized, otherwise you won’t be productive and the evolution of your blog will be static.

Traveling is entertaining, but see this as a job, you have to be efficient: Posting publications, articles on your travel blog, editing videos, working on your photos... There is also the administration, answering emails, solicitations, sending invoices, payment reminders, accounting, meetings, you have to think about those aspects and not only about traveling.

When you don't create content as a travel blogger, you also do training and monitoring. You learn new techniques, to use new tools (editing software, retouching, marketing, SEO, networking…). If you don't try to renew yourself, to progress, you will unfortunately not evolve in this area.

Blogging is constantly evolving, you have to keep yourself informed and be ready to change your way of working to follow the trends and not become obsolete, it takes time, so you have to be patient and work a lot, like in any business, focus on quality and authenticity. Being a blogger is a long term work which is done over several years to gain notoriety.

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