How to Start a Professional Travel Blog

November 07, 2018 by Patricia Bennett

Summer is the season when most people travel. Before they head off, they usually collect relevant information about the specific destination. If one wants to learn about transportation, accommodation, and a variety of activities, they can ask the tour operator. However, more and more people decide to organize traveling on their own. In such a case, travel blogs are a valuable source of information.

Though travel blogs are not rare, starting a professional travel blog sound like a good idea. The key point is that they are not all of the same quality. To be competitive in the market, a travel blog is supposed to be professionally created.

Whether you are a passionate traveler who wants to share personal experiences or you are representing an agency, starting a professional #travel #blog is a serious endeavor with the goal to capture the attention of the #audience. Click To Tweet

WordPress – Simple, Easy, and Functional

There are a few important things that you should have in mind before approaching the next step. If you are on the budget, do not discourage yourself! You can build the website without investing a fortune.

WordPress is already well known as the open source software which is used by 31% of the web, from amateur blogs to impressive and successful websites. Powerful features of WordPress refer not only to the outstanding design possibilities and user community forums providing constant support at any time. It is easy-to-use and flexible at the same time, empowered with standard features and thousands of plugins created to suit every purpose. You can literally find the perfect match for a professional travel blog.

Publishing and formatting of posts and pages are easy with the variety of publishing tools. You can manage the content completely in accordance with your will. Media management is of utmost importance for a professional travel blog. You will be able to upload pictures and videos in minutes by using simple drag and drop option. It is as simple as if you want to add captions or descriptions.

Limitless Opportunities Empowered with Kinsta

Besides creativity, you will need absolute freedom to build the professional travel blog. With self-hosted WordPress.org you will have access to all advanced features. In such a creative environment, you can follow and develop the ideas undisturbed. After you have chosen a domain name, pay your attention to Kinsta.

Kinsta WordPress

This premium hosting company employs an expert team dedicated to WordPress exclusively which is a huge benefit to all users. Reliability and remarkable services have earned Kinsta the reputation of a trusted company that you actually want by your side. To learn more about Kinsta, check the review we have recently published.

Theme and Plugins Directories

To achieve the proper look of the website, you have to search through theme and plugin directories that enable you to choose what suits your professional travel blog the best. The first one is in charge of bringing on your creativity and representing the content in the most attractive way while the other is necessary for the success of the website. Social networking, spam protection, fine-tunes controls for SEO, and much more can be added to the website. There is also the comment tool if you want to engage your readers with the content. It will make your professional travel blog more vibrant.

Choosing an adequate theme for a travel blog is a serious step while building the website.

Sometimes, a wide range of themes can be confusing. Any theme would do, but it may not reflect the essence of traveling. Adventure, culture, beautiful nature is what traveling is all about, and a professional travel blog is supposed to captivate the attention of the audience with its appearance.

Divi – the Visual Jackpot

More than twenty themes stand as the best choice for travel blogs. The visual aspect is very important and therefore there is no compromise when choosing a theme. Elegant Themes have developed Divi which is at the same time a toolkit that serves as a visual page builder and the WordPress theme. This flagship theme is most popular for several reasons. Calling it simply a theme is not entirely correct as we are dealing here with a website building framework.

Divi

Designing a website has never been so close at hand without complicated configurations. You can try it for free and get introduced to its amazing features. Stand-alone plugins represent huge advantage enabling you to achieve the visual jackpot in user-friendly design interface. Supposing that you intend to move forward as quickly as possible, this product is made to be efficient and fully responsive.

Careful with Plugins

After you have started a professional travel blog, it is time to make it more personal and customized. WordPress plugins are your reliable partner on this mission. The appearance itself is worthless if the website is not functional. To avoid over cluttering of your blog, think in advance which plugins exactly you really need. Be creative but remain rational, and install only those you will really use. Always be cautious and don’t use old & outdated plugins.

The main feature of most plugins is to boost your social presence and help your website grow in no time.

The first rule is that the plugin must not decrease the load time of your travel blog. Some plugins are available free of charge while the others will require a small investment. The difference between these two categories is in the additional features. Generally speaking, all plugins add to the quality of a travel blog making it more successful in the industry.

Indispensable Plugins for Professional Travel Blogs

Several WordPress plugins have gained in popularity in creating a professional travel blog.

Before even starting the blog, you should deploy a coming soon page that will let you connect with your audience and maybe start collecting emails. Luckily, there are WordPress plugin like Coming Soon & Maintenance Mode or UnderConstructionPage which come prepacked with templates related to traveling. The plugins can be installed & set up within minutes, and you can relax knowing the first visitors won’t load an empty page.

Journey UnderConstructionPage

SEO foundation is a necessary factor for its growth and rank in search results. It is a way how you will drive free traffic to your website. Keep in mind SEO all the time, and the search engines will work in your favor. Yoast SEO is a free plugin serving that purpose. It checks the content before publishing. With this plugin, you can count on useful tips on how to improve the SEO quality of the posts.

SEO Smart Links is a less known plugin that enables you to auto-link any word you want. In this way, internal and external linking becomes automatic meaning that you can attract more traffic to a specific post every time the chosen word or phrase appears on your website. Auto-linking basically enables the connection between categories, keywords, and appropriate posts. Outward linking with your affiliates is also possible. It can be a way how you can monetize the website. Interactive maps provided by the standard HTML5 Maps plugin are the inevitable content of travel blogs as well.

Blog Designer Pro – WordPress plugin is the ultimate solution for designing your blog page without any help of a designer. It has 50 different readymade layouts to apply a unique design to your blog page. You can apply a grid, masonry, slider, timeline layouts, and many more. This plugin is compatible with almost all available WordPress themes. So, no worry about theme compatibility issues.

Maintain, Secure, and Monetize Travel Blog

Maintaining a professional travel blog demands a strict schedule for publishing articles. It leads to a predictable time frame users like very much. Moreover, Google rewards such websites. WP Editorial Calendar is drag and drop plugin of great help.

Be aware of the fact that WordPress does not have a built-in spell and grammar check. Check your posts before editing in the dashboard or use Grammarly. It is not a perfect tool, but it corrects up to 95% of mistakes and helps in preserving the credibility of your travel blog. Shortcodes Ultimate has been used to emphasize a part of the content in the edit post screen. Galleries, tables, styled boxes and much more can be created with a variety of shortcodes.

Security is also an important factor in designing a successful and professional travel blog. Like every other service on the Internet, WordPress is not immune to viruses and hackers. Security Ninja plugin is designed to prevent unfavorable situations and to protect your website. Lean on this malware security plugin from the very beginning.

Security Ninja

Spam comments in the conversation feed are the first problem you will encounter. Akismet Anti-Spam plugin minimizes spam comments while the paid version cleans up the site from unwanted content. This plugin saves a lot of your time.

Your effort to make a travel blog hides a trap. Monetizing of the website is one of the main goals, but it shall happen in the right way. Not all readers need to see all the content. You can write certain posts for the SEO purpose, or you might be paid to publish posts for some advertisers. In both cases, the website may seem overwhelmed with advertising which will turn the focus off the content. WP Hide Post plugin enables you to hide the post from the wider audience while earning money at the same time. Most importantly, the appearance of a travel blog remains appealing while you preserve the quality of the content. Some hidden content is to be found by clicking on a specific link.

Additional Plugins that Might Be Useful

To be as successful as possible, a professional travel blog needs to run fast. Frequent use enables caching of files, but you have to be sure that your website caches the content and serves it to browsers. For that purpose, you can lean on the Swift Performance plugin. The installation and implementation are simple, and auto-optimization for your website is a huge advantage. This plugin can play a part in driving free traffic. The website will be loaded faster, and frequent visitors will appreciate quick access to the right information.

Swift Performance

WordPress offers a lot of other plugins that we have not mentioned yet. They might be not essential, and over time you will see if they could add to the quality of your professional travel blog or not. WP Smushit, for example, automatically compresses the photos on upload while preserving visible image quality. Some plugins can directly affect the driving of free traffic to your website. Such an example is jQuery Pin It Button. It guarantees the Pinterest boost, and you will manage which photos will have the button. In a word, a lot of plugins can affect the traffic to your website and consequently increase sales. Adding a timer brings a lot of dynamic to a travel blog with special offers or running out of time. Evergreen Timer plugin works perfectly. Expiring offers can be driven to individual users you have targeted. Just be careful to test it with the chosen theme and keep yourself updated with the new plugins.

And in the end, you simply can’t have a travel blog without Google Maps. You will want to show locations you have traveled to and pinpoint cities & countries that you want to visit. When it comes to maps, Google Maps Widget will be your guide. Take a look at the video below and check all the features that make GMW the bests Google Maps plugin on the market.

Paid Traffic Sources

It is not complicated to drive free traffic but as a professional, start thinking of paid traffic sources. They are not the alternative to free traffic but a partner in starting a new chapter of the successful business. Monetization strategy and paid sources are in close connection. To be a part of the affiliate marketing game, you have to consider several options before you decide which paid source suits travel blog the best. Costs, amount of traffic available and targeting options are important aspects.

Cost varies depending on the type of traffic, and the best choice is to base your decision on the offer you are promoting. Some traffic sources have restrictions you should be aware of.  Read the guidelines carefully to avoid misleading banners. To achieve positive results, mind the content of your website and promote what the convenient match is. Most importantly, do not risk and take none-credible traffic sources into consideration. Fortunately, legit traffic sources have their own internal fraud control to analyze traffic. Speaking about targeting, the list of options is long; if you start the campaign, think first about its general aspects. Do you promote travel for older people or active adventurers, mind age, GEO, languages, etc.?

Targeting enables you to select who should see your ads. That increases chances to convert a visitor into a buyer which means a cool conversion for the financial success of your travel blog.

You can even use geolocation to know where your visitors are coming from. If you get interested in geolocation, we suggest checking IP Geolocation who will get you everything needed.

By implementing plugins, you have accomplished to boost the traffic which leads to monetizing the website. Highly ranked professional travel blog must contain accurate, interesting, and well-presented information on a variety of topics. It must look appealing and attract visitors with its design.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *