How to start a successful blog in 2023
I have a blog. It is successful. So let me tell you how to start yours by describing exactly how to make a copy of mine. Wouldn't that be an incredibly useful and creative blog post? One minor problem… two actually. First, my blog is definitely not successful (and that's a feature, not a bug) and second, there are many, many good ways to start a blog. So, let me just write down some of the ways you can start a blog—a successful one—in 2023.
My budget is 0 and I have no tech skills
If that's you, well, there are good solutions out there. If your budget is 0 you won't really own your place online since you won't own your domain name but if that's okay with you then great. For this particular use case, starting a blog comes down to picking the platform you like, signing up and you're good to go. Some platforms available to you are, in no particular order:
These are some of the options and by no means all the options and all of them have some pros and cons. If it was up to me, if I were to start a successful blog in 2023 I'd pick Substack mainly because it's probably easier to grow out of it and is the more focused.
I still don't have tech skills but I am willing to spend some of money
If you're in this camp, then you have two solutions. You can either pick some of the platforms listed earlier and add a custom domain which would make your place on the web a bit more yours since you'd then own the URLs, or you can use a premium blogging platform. If I had to pay for a platform I'd pay for micro.blog right now. Because it's the one that seems to be run with the most sense and I personally love the approach. But there are other options.
I have money to waste but not the time to learn tech skills
Get yourself an account on ghost.org. It's probably the best premium blogging/publishing platform available. Expensive, sure, but you said you have money so here we are.
I don't mind spending money and I do have some tech skills
You're basically in the camp I'm in. I can't afford to spend a lot running a server for my stuff just for fun but I do have enough skills to make and run my own blog. I'd say your best options are to pick a CMS—I'd go file based if I were you—and then I'd host my site on a relatively cheap VPS. You can keep a personal site up for less than $5/m, domain included which to me sounds like a reasonable price to pay.
Money isn't an issue, I love tech, I hate platforms and don't have time to waste
Hire a developer and a designer. Done. Have someone else worry about all the sysadmin stuff and enjoy writing.
Okay, now that you have a successful blog online, it's time to create some content. You'd think that would come before becoming successful, but that is so old school. First you start a successful blog—in 2023, come back next year for an updated guide wink wink—and then you start creating content. What should you blog about? Just blog about anything you find interesting and thought-provoking. And use it to reply to people whose content you find interesting. Blogs are more fun when they’re used to have conversations. If you only have a blog to talk about yourself, it's fine but it's also a bit boring.
Questions? Comments? Get in touch via email.