Are you ready to join the world of book blogging? I decided to take my love of reading romance books online and become a book blogger and haven’t looked back since.
If you love to read then you too can start blogging about books and start your own book blog.
If you’re ready to jump in, here are a few tips to get you started.
Book Blogging: Why Start a Book Blog?
Before you enter the book blogging world, I suggest you first decide your reason for becoming a book blogger.
- Do you want to connect with your favorite authors?
- Do you want advanced reader copies of books?
- Do you want to connect with a community of readers?
I created my book blog, She Reads Romance Books, because I wanted to help fellow romance book lovers find the best romance books worth reading. I create epic book lists on my book blog so that romance readers are never without a great book to read.
I also wanted to support romance book authors, especially indie authors, and help promote their books.
Blogging is a lot of fun but it’s also a lot of work. I’d like to think all book bloggers have a day where they have to remind themselves why they do what they do.
For that reason be sure you know why YOU want to start blogging about books so you never lose sight of your reason for doing it!
Book Blogging: Key Steps to Launch a Book Blog
Blogs on books range from the hobby blogger to the more dedicated book blogger. Wherever you fall on the spectrum, there are a few key steps before launching your book blog.
1) Name Your Book Blog
This is the fun part – naming your book blog! Pick a name that fits your niche and the focus of your book blog.
My book blog is focused exclusively on romance books hence the words romance books are in my blog’s name. Anyone coming to my blog should have a good idea that they will find information on romance books, not mystery books, biographies or other genres.
Before deciding on a name, check it out on Namecheckr. This is an easy and quick way to see if the name you choose is available as a domain name and if the associated social account names are available or already taken.
2) Craft Your Main Book Blog Pages
Layout your design for these pages and draft your web page copy so they are ready to upload on your book blog once your site is ready.
3) Write A Few Blog Posts
Before taking your book blog live, you’ll want to write a few blog posts. This serves two purposes.
One, writing a few blog posts will let you know whether this is something you really want to do.
If after writing just a few posts you realize that book blogging sounded fun but in reality is not something you can see yourself doing for the long haul then you can stop without having already invested a lot of time and money.
Two, having a few book blog posts already written and ready to go will make sure your book blog has some great material to share right when you launch.
4) Launch Your Book Blog
With these basic steps under your belt, you’re now ready to create your site and launch!
To help you create your book blog and get the most out of your time blogging about books, here are some resources to help you.
Because these are resources that I use to help me be the best book blogger I can be and create an epic book blog, these links are affiliate links.
If you decide to use these awesome resources as well and purchase after clicking my link, I receive a small commission at no cost to you (disclaimer).
Book Blogging Resources
Book Blogging Web Site Builder & Hosting
Before you start blogging about books you need a web site builder. There are lots of options to choose from (WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, Weebly, etc.) but ultimately it’s up to you to pick one based on price, ease of use and design features.
When I first started my blog, I used Squarespace because I was familiar with the platform and could quickly design a site that I was comfortable with and could easily update and create new content.
As time went on I realized that I wanted more control over my site’s speed so I made the switch to WordPress!
WordPress is king when it comes to the blogging world BUT it definitely requires more know how and can definitely be more pricey depending on the hosting company you choose and the theme you use (if you use one).
If you go with WordPress, definitely skip the free version. That means you’ll need to find and pay for web hosting.
I compared prices and options and read a ton of reviews and ultimately settled on BigScoots. Their managed WordPress plans come with free SSL certificate, free email and are fully managed. I highly recommend them!
Plus, speed is everything when it comes to blogging online. I knew that my site would have the best speed going with BigScoots.
For those unsure if blogging is ultimately for you and you’re hesitant to jump right in with WordPress then I recommend GroovePages which is a complete web site builder and host in one.
The best part about GroovePages? It’s free!
For a limited time, GroovePages is free, giving you the ability to create up to three branded web sites with full navigation for free. Plus GroovePages includes free hosting.
Not only that, but GroovePages gives you free custom domains which is unheard of. Other free blogging platforms require you to have their name in your domain name (like blogger or wordpress) but GroovePages gives you your own free, custom domain!
No need to purchase your custom domain from GoDaddy or another domain provider.
Again, if book blogging doesn’t turn out to be your thing, you’re not out any money if you start a site with GroovePages.
Legal Policies for Your Book Blog
If you start a book blog, you’re going to want to make sure you have the necessary policies in place. These are required and protect you as a book blogger as well.
The three main legal policies you need for your book blog are:
- Disclaimer: This protects you for the content you publish on your book blog and should disclose any affiliate programs you are a part of.
- Terms and Conditions: This articulates the rules and regulations for what is allowed and not allowed on your book blog site.
Amira at A Self Guru is a business lawyer and successful blogger who has created these templates for bloggers and online entrepreneurs. Purchase this Legal Bundle and rest assured that your book blogging ventures are covered. Plus, with the purchase you’ll have access to any future updates!
Email Marketing for Book Bloggers
One of the best ways to build and stay in touch with your book blog audience is to start an email list from day one.
Social media followers can come and go but your email list is a great way to keep your readers informed of what’s new on your blog and to keep the page views coming.
Mailerlite is my email marketing system of choice for it’s usability, pricing and integrations.
I’ve honestly used Mailchimp, Convertkit and Mailerlite for my business and book blog and Mailerlite totally beats out the other two.
I find it to be very user-friendly and cost effective with all the bells and whistles that you might want.
Book Blogging With Pinterest
Once you start book blogging, you’ll want to make sure you get traffic to your blog! One of the best ways to increase your traffic is to use Pinterest.
Pinterest is actually a search engine, like Google, so your content has the ability to be viewed again and again unlike on social media which has a very short life span for content.
To learn the basics of Pinterest and how to set up a business account for your book blog, I recommend the Pinterest course, Pin It With El.
This course gives you the nuts and bolts for how to set up an account, how often to pin and how to schedule your pins to Pinterest. It’s quite affordable and gives you the exact steps you need to launch your Pinterest strategy.
After the Pinterest course, one of the best investments I made for my book blog was joining Tailwind. Tailwind is a Pinterest Scheduler that lets you schedule out your pins to Pinterest in advance.
This service not only saves you SO much time but it will skyrocket your views.
Once I started using Tailwind, my pin views jumped from 5.5K to 121K in just one month and to 540K in just six and a half months. It seriously was a game changer and makes pinning to Pinterest so much easier.
Pinterest is all about the visual pins so if you are serious about developing a following for your book blog on Pinterest (which you should!) then you’ll want to use Canva.
Canva is a free graphic design platform which enables you to easily create pinable images for your blog posts.
They make it super easy for you giving many Pinterest Templates to choose from that are already in the correct size for appropriate pins.
I use the free version of Canva but am considering upgrading to Canva Pro to utilize it’s extra bells and whistles, but the free version should be sufficient to start with until you know your needs.
Learn SEO to Launch Your Book Blog
When you enter the blogging world, it’s important to learn and understand search engine optimization. Angela at Stray Curls is amazing at explaining the importance of SEO and how to implement it effectively for your blog.
She offers blogging resources including several ebooks that are worth EVERY penny to help you on your blogging journey.
Selling Digital Products
Selling digital products on your blog is a great way to earn income to keep your blog going. I created and sell the printable Romance Book Reading Journal on my blog for example.
I use SendOwl to sell and send my digital Journal because it is SO easy to use and is very affordable.
You can set up your product in minutes, link your checkout page to your blog and you’re done! SendOwl takes care of payment and delivery of your product. I highly recommend!
Using Quizzes on your Book Blog
Using quizzes is such a fun way to get visitors to your book blog interacting with you and your content.
I use Interact to create all my quizzes. They are super easy to create and you can even search for images and GIFs to use within your quizzes.
With the paid plan you get access to your quiz analytics and have people sign up for your email list.
Book Blogging: Finding Free Books
If you’re blogging about books, then you’re going to need books to read, am I right? Now I love using the library but sometimes it just doesn’t carry every title you’re looking to read.
And when you read as much as I do, purchasing books can really add up! That’s why I’ve honed in on several legit sources for free books for my book blog.
You can check out all of my sources for free books in my free romance book guide.
Reedsy Discovery Book Review Program
Get started reviewing books with the Reedsy Discovery program! You’ll have access to free books before they release AND you can earn money doing it!
By joining the program, you can earn $25 for your first review. Doesn’t that sound awesome?
Book Blogging Affiliate Programs
If you are writing about books in your book blog, then you’re going to want to sign up for affiliate programs so that you can make money from those book mentions.
Book retailers such as Amazon, Apple Books, Barnes & Noble and Bookshop have affiliate programs that you can join.
Once you become an affiliate, anytime a visitor to your book blog clicks on one of your affiliate links and makes a purchase, then you get a small commission at no additional cost to that person.
These affiliate programs don’t have huge payouts, but if you’re serious about blogging about books, then it can add up. This money can then be poured back into your blog or be used to purchase more books!
Just be sure that you always disclose your affiliate links in each of your book blog posts and pages where appropriate.
So there you have it!
Follow the tips in this Book Blogging Guide and you’ll be on your way as an official book blogger. It’s really a lot of fun so join in and get blogging!