How to Start a Cooking Blog

A cooking blog is an excellent idea for those enamoured with cuisine and food preparation. The following guide will highlight the most important steps for setting up a cooking blog, building an audience and monetising it in the future.

Are you a foodie with a passion for cooking? Do you want to share your ideas with others and potentially make money from doing so? If so, starting a cooking blog may be perfect for you. The world of food is continually evolving. Furthermore, the diverse range of dietary requirements, lifestyle changes and food options mean that there is space in the market for everybody. Here at Business Name Generator, we have collated the best tips to get you started with the process.

Identify your cooking niche

Inevitably, the food and cooking industry is vast. However, this is something that can work in your favor. For example, there are blogs on the following:

  • Recipe
  • Cookbook review
  • Healthy eating
  • Cuisine-specific
  • Location-specific
  • Cultural-specific
  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Pescatarian
  • Gluten-free
  • Dairy-free
  • Egg-free
  • Allergy and intolerance cooking
  • Celebratory cooking (for large numbers)
  • Cost-efficient
  • Meal planning
  • Family meals
  • Cooking for babies’ first food

Most importantly, choose a niche cooking area that you enjoy cooking and that you can write about. Furthermore, you should choose an area with potential for growth and ideas. Ideally, you will have relevant experience in the area that you choose.

Conduct market research

Inevitably, conducting market research is an advantageous aspect of all early business phases. Identify your competitors as well as highly successful cooking-related blogs. Then, note down their strengths and limitations. Look at the following aspects of their blog:

  • Blog name
  • Logo
  • Branding: how do they portray their brand across their blog? Do they incorporate their logo on different webpages or within images?
  • Food niche
  • Content: what do they write about?
  • Writing style: how do they incorporate their personality into their content? Are they humorous? Do they include details of their personal life?
  • Images: what do they picture? How many pictures do they include per post?
  • Website: how is their website designed? Is the layout effective? How do they separate their content?
  • Marketing methods: do they use any marketing methods that are worth noting? Do they have related social media accounts?

As a result of your market research, you may be able to pinpoint a niche area that is underrepresented within the market. Additionally, you will gain lots of inspiration and ideas from looking at successful competitors.

Choose a name

By now, you are in a position to start thinking about names. When it comes to naming your blog, you should choose something that is relevant, memorable and unique. Ideally, your name should represent your cooking niche or the concept behind your cooking. E.g., if you choose to create a cost-effective blog, you might call your blog: Cheap and cheerful cooking.

Before deciding on a name, utilize our invaluable business name generator. Here, you can enter keywords and our generator will provide you with a variety of options. Furthermore, do you want to know how to check if your business name is taken or not, check our blog here.

Below are a few additional tips for choosing an excellent blog name.

• Always choose a .com domain when possible

• Keep it as short and simple

• Avoid using complicated words

• Don’t include numbers, homophones, and hyphens

At Business Name Generator, we have several invaluable articles that can assist you in the naming process, such as name availability, tips on generating ideas and how to inject creativity into your name.

Create a business plan

So, you’ve decided that self-employment is for you. It is now time for you to formulate a business plan wherein you outline your company’s objectives, products, market research, advertising methods, business structure and financial calculations.

If you are not sure how to start with a business plan, we have a complete guide on how to start writing a business plan.

Create a website

It’s now time to get technical and set up your site. While it may appear complicated at first, don’t worry, it is much simpler than it sounds. The good news is that you can usually complete a basic set up it in less than one hour.

To set up your blog, you need a domain name which is often the same as your blog’s name to make it easier for your audience members to associate the two.

Additionally, there are lots of web hosting platforms where you can host your site. However, it is critical to choose reliable web hosting. Notably, the performance of your website largely depends on your hosting company. We recommend choosing BlueHost to host your site as they have a simple tool for a WordPress installation, and they offer discounted hosting rates.

Additionally, as well as a domain name and blog title, you may wish to enhance your brand’s visibility by creating your own logo. Think about the advertising power of some of the most renowned logos, consider how you might visually represent your blog and read our article on creating your own logo here.

Personalize your blog

The aesthetics and accessibility of your blog are critical aspects that determine audience retention. Notably, users will want to be able to locate content easily. Moreover, your page should be simple and attractive. Specifically, in relation to cooking content, you should include a variety of good quality images alongside text. Additionally, consider the following characteristics:

  • A search bar that allows users to search specific keywords and recipes
  • Webpages that are accurately titled to ensure quick ease of access to relevant information
  • An ‘about’ page that includes your background and motivations behind the blog
  • A ‘contact’ page that allows your audience to ask you questions
  • Ensure that commenting is allowed for each post so that users can ask you questions
  • Include links to your social media pages

Promote your blog

Use social media to your advantage

While there are many social media platforms out there, it is worthwhile to choose a few popular social media sites to create profiles on enabling promotion of your blog.

Ideally, choose social media sites that your target readers use. Due to the visual nature of cooking, Instagram cooking accounts are very popular. Additionally, TikTok is a great option to promote cooking. The platform has the ability to give an average creator overnight viral status.

Furthermore, there are a wealth of new blogger groups and forums that you can join for added beginner’s tips and promotion ideas. Specifically, these groups are often found on Facebook. Such groups often encourage collaborations, follows and interactions with your content in exchange for the equivalent on their blogs.

Join forums

Additionally, forums are another powerful and beneficial place to advertise your cooking blog. All you need to do is sign up on various cooking forum such as Discuss Cooking or Cooking Bites, and add a banner to your name that takes visitors to your website.

Create content

Post regularly and consistently

Don’t forget to post regularly! Successful blogs are churning out content on a regular basis, but you decide what schedule is for you. You can choose to post weekly, daily, every other day, or whatever fits into your life. Just make sure you’re always posting something! Creating an editorial calendar is an excellent and professional way of organizing your content. At a glance, you will be able to view past and prospective content alongside content status and type. You can personalize your calendar to include headings that are useful to you and there are many free templates available online.

Separate your content

Split your content into manageable sections, use subheadings, images, videos, bullet points and quotes that enable users to easily navigate and locate whatever they are looking for. In particular, when it comes to cooking related content, ensure that ingredients and their measurements are clearly listed. Simplify your cooking instructions so that they are easy to read and follow. Additionally, you may wish to release ingredients in advance of your cooking post to allow users to cook along with you. Initially, you may wish to start with just images and text. As you become more confident, why not try live cooking alongside the videos that you may already produce. If you are uncertain about being on camera, you can focus on your hands and actions only.

Create internal links

Within each blog post, link to other relevant pages within your blog to encourage users to explore your blog further.

Boost your traffic

So, you have a blog set up and content ready to produce. How do you get people to read it? Growing an audience might seem like a daunting task, but with proper planning and strategy, your blog will be attracting readers in no time. Below, we have listed a few ways to help grow your website traffic.

Notably, the trick to growing your blog traffic is not to just bring new visitors but to also keep the old ones coming back. Therefore, starting an email list is an easy way to retain your followers. It’s a great asset that reminds readers to read your content by means of weekly emails. There are many email marketing tools that can help you get started, Convertkit and MailChimp are two of the most popular.

Start guest blogging

Guest posting can help drive high-quality traffic to your blog. This traffic strategy can be extremely effective. Start by researching guest bloggers who have similar cooking content to you and make inquiries regarding potential collaborations. Comment and like their social media posts, leave cooking tips and advice, and reach out to see if you can guest post on their blog, this will in turn help your blog as you’ll get clicks from your name. Alternatively, beginner blogging groups are a useful means of connecting with other bloggers and these mutual collaborations are encouraged.

Ensure that content is search engine optimized

You can optimize all of your content to boost your search engine rankings. Therefore, users who search for topics that you have included in your blog will be able to see your blog in their search results.

Monetize your blog

Once you have a regular following, and you have established your blog. You may be in the position to monetize your blog.

Here are a few ideas:

Display advertisements: You can use space on your blog to display advertisements from other companies. This is effective when advertising companies that complement your blog content. For example, a recipe book review blog could advertise recipe books.

Sell recipes: You could create an eBook from your own recipes and sell it on your site. Simply add an e-commerce plug-in, and you can create an online store function within your site.

Sell merchandise: Why not design a cooking utensils range and brand them with your logos? This is a big step and only works within blogs that have a substantial and regular following.

Affiliate links: Typically, this is a very popular additional means of making profit from cooking blogs. Inevitably, you will be using a range of ingredients and products within your recipe. Furthermore, you can link the products that you use so that when users purchase those products, you are able to earn commission.

Successful cooking blogs

Why not start your research by looking to these examples for inspiration?

1. Deliciously Ella

Ella Woodward focuses on sharing healthy eating recipes. Starting out as a blog, she now has a mobile app, several cookbooks and her own line of snacks. Additionally, she runs her own deli business.

2. Fit Men Cook

Likewise, Kevin Curry began a healthy eating blog to address his poor diet. Initially, he shared his recipes with others via his blog. He now has two mobile apps and has featured in The Huffington Post and Men’s Health.

3. Minimalist Baker

As the name suggest, this baker’s unique selling point is simplicity. She uses her blog to share recipes that require no more than 10 ingredients, using only one bowl and taking only 30 minutes to make. Consequently, she has released an eBook and a blogging and food photography course.

Conclusion

Following that, you are ready to embark on your cooking blog journey. Ultimately, with planning, consistency and knowledge, you are equipped to monetize your hobby. Take inspiration from the mass market and explore our website for further business and blog related ideas.

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