It might surprise you (or it might not), but I started my blog in complete secret.
I wanted to be anonymous.
I sure as heck didn’t want people in my *real* life to find out I was blogging and going for that extraordinary life.
There’s still part of me (the introvert in me) that can get slight anxiety from the fact that I am all over the internet.
After all, I’m a true introvert who generally walks in the opposite direction of the spotlight.
But mostly, when I look back to where I started, I understand just how far I’ve come.
A lot can happen in two years.
But I get it.
I get why you’re reading this blog post and why you want to start a blog anonymously and in secret.
Having your name and face on your blog might not be your thing.
And perhaps you’d like to (like myself) ease your way into online confidence and visibility.
Either way, in this blog post, you’ll learn how to start a blog anonymously, so that it can be your safe space – your own little bubble – online.
- Why Starting A Blog Is The Perfect Job For Introverts
- Why I Started A Blog As An Introvert & How You Can Too
- How To Start A Blog For Beginners
For all my visual learners, here’s the YouTube video for ya.
Why Start A Secret Blog
The reasons for starting a blog in secret may be many and it certainly depends a lot on you.
Here are some of the main reasons why I see people wanting to start anonymous blogs:
- Work conflicts
- Security reasons
- Blogging about personal experiences of the delicate sort
- Blogging about touchy topics in general
- Fear, confidence issues, and imposter syndrome
I want to take a minute and bring your attention to the last reason on this bullet point list. ????
Because it’s why it took ME so long to show up in my blogging business.
I was afraid and I had major imposter syndrome issues.
I want you to know that it’s okay to feel this way, but if this is the only reason why you’re not wanting to put yourself out there and start a blog, I think there will be hope for you down the road (speaking from experience).
Not having the confidence to shine online is so common and we all need to deal with this obstacle in our own way and in our own time.
The great thing about blogging is that you’re officially embarking upon a true personal growth journey.
I kid you not.
Blogging is transformative in that way.
You’re going to grow so much and you might even grow into a blogger who finally feels comfortable in her new online skin.
That’s what happened to me.
Now, it’s not an overnight thing, it will likely take some time.
But just know that it’s okay to take all of this in your own time and for you to be yourself online and to SHINE. ✨
The One Downside of Starting a Secret Blog
While I fully support anyone wanting to start a secret blog or ease their way into online visibility, I do want to say that I personally believe that the fastest way to have success blogging is if you put yourself out there in one way or another.
People desire connection.
People seek relatability.
They want to connect with the person behind the blog, follow their journey, and be able to relate to their story.
It’s human nature to want this connection.
It will help build the know, like and trust factor with your audience.
But then again, it does depend on your niche.
If you’re a food blogger, it might not be as relevant for your audience to connect with you (they just want a free and tasty recipe) as it would if you’re a personal development blogger where the personal story is more imperative.
Now I don’t want to completely discourage you from starting a blog anonymously, I do think it’s possible to have success with a secret blog, but it might take a little longer and there are several variables that factor in (like your niche).
I just want to share my personal opinion on this because I did start a secret blog myself and I have seen a spike in my blogging business the moment I decided to show up in a bigger way.
Step 1. Know Your Why
Starting a blog is a journey and it can change your life in so many amazing ways.
One of the things you should get crystal clear about before going on this adventure is the goal you have for your blog and why you’re starting a blog in the first place.
- Do you want to start a side hustle?
- Do you want your blog to eventually replace your 9-5?
- Do you simply want to share your thoughts?
- Do you want to start a hobby blog?
All of the above require different strategies and mindset work.
If you’re serious about blogging and the dream is to do it full time, it’s going to require a lot of time and effort spent because what you’re essentially doing is starting a business.
If you just want to share your thoughts and start a hobby blog for fun – there will be less time and effort that goes into that.
But please don’t start a blog JUST for the money.
You should be passionate about writing, helping people out, and solving problems.
The money is the byproduct of you writing epic content that people love and engage with – honestly.
If you do it just for the money, your heart won’t likely be in it and this will be obvious to your audience and it’s going to be hard for you to keep the momentum and stay the course.
You’ll want to come to terms with why you’re starting a blog in the first place and what your dream vision is.
Step 2. Name Your Blog + Determine Focus
Before you start your blog, you need to pick a name and a focus.
- What will you write about?
- What will be the overall theme for your blog?
- In other words, what will be your blogging niche?
Base this on your experience, passions, topics you’re curious about, or want to learn more about.
Think about what other people tend to come to you for advice on.
You don’t have to be an expert or have a degree in your chosen niche, but it should be something you think you will enjoy writing content on.
I don’t want you to overthink this step too much because blogging is an ever-evolving thing and your niche is bound to change.
Mine sure did!
I started out writing about everything from frugal living to mental health.
Now I focus on personal growth and blogging for introverts.
Don’t spend too long trying to figure out the perfect niche for your blog.
The key is to just start.
Step 3. Sign Up For Hosting
Regardless if you’re starting a blog anonymously, you need to sign up for a blogging platform and a host to realize your dream blog.
If you’re starting a hobby blog you can sign up for a free WordPress.com blog account.
If you’re starting a blogging business and you’re serious about blogging, I recommend you pay for hosting to be able to get your very own domain name (f.ex yourblogname.com).
It’s just more professional and it will be easier to monetize and get visitors when you’re ready to grow your blogging business.
I always recommend Bluehost (blog host) for beginner bloggers.
It’s the hosting platform that I started out with and have used for years.
Feeling a little confused right now?
So did I, when I read these tutorials back in the day so let me break it all down for you – and hopefully you’ll have a better understanding of this important step of starting a blog.
What is a blog host?
Your host is where your website and blog will live on the internet, its server – where all the complicated coding and your files are located.
It’s the home of your domain and your domain is the address of your blog (the dot com).
You can’t own a domain or have a website without a host.
You’re renting a storage space for your blog to live on the internet – just like you would need a physical store if you were to open a café, boutique, or other brick-and-mortar types of business.
Bluehost is an example of a blog host and it is the host I recommend all beginner bloggers start with (it’s what I started with).
What is WordPress?
WordPress is the actual blogging platform.
It’s the backend of your blog – where you’ll write all of your blog posts, install your blog’s theme, make customizations, and design changes.
You have two options when it comes to WordPress.
You can get the free version (calling all hobby bloggers) – WordPress.com – or the paid version which is self-hosted by a separate host (enter Bluehost).
I recommend Bluehost with WordPress.org a hundred times over.
They are super compatible (WordPress will automatically install when you sign up for Bluehost) and you get your domain for FREE too – which is pretty awesome.
I just highly recommend that if you’re serious about blogging – go pro.
Watch the tutorial below. It’ll take you through the step by step of setting up your new dream blog with Bluehost.
This video is a lesson from my blogging course for introverts, Dreamer To Blogger.
Due to the fact that you’re starting a secret blog, you need to make sure that you check the box that says “Domain Privacy Protection” when you sign up for hosting.
This way, both your name and the contact information you submit when signing up for Bluehost will be protected and held private.
If you don’t see this checkbox when you sign up, don’t panic, you will be able to add it on later in your Bluehost dashboard under Market Place -> Add-Ons.
Step 4. Create A Blogging Email Account
You’ll want to create a brand new blogging email that you can connect with your WordPress account and everything related to your blogging biz.
Simply create a new email using Gmail or Gsuite if you want to use your domain name (firstname.lastname@example.org) and have it be a bit more on the professional side.
Step 5. Set Up Your Social Media Accounts
You will want to start fresh with your new secret blog.
Sign up for Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook.
Fear not, you won’t need to post photos of yourself, you can easily create graphics (f.ex quote graphics) using Canva and use stock photos for your social media accounts.
A note on Facebook pages:
Don’t worry, your family and friends will not be able to see that you’ve created a new page for your blog.
I remember worrying so much about this in the beginning and it took me over a year to set it up.
You will not be associated with your new Facebook page unless you manually promote it to your friends on Facebook.
Busy bee? Pin this article for later.
Can I Use A Fake Name?
Honestly, this is up to you.
You will need to sign up for hosting using your REAL name, but what you decide to call yourself on your blog is completely your call.
Using a fake name will certainly make it impossible for people to connect the dots on search engines (the dots being your name and your blog).
You don’t have to lie or make up a story about yourself, you should still speak about your honest experiences to be able to connect with your audience – just under a different name.
I started out referring to myself as “M” and I’ve since then only used my first name.
Might this be the time for a Princess Banana Hammock or a Sasha Fierce? I think so!
For anyone who snatched that reference, I love you.
Stock Photos To The Rescue
Not being able (or wanting) to have your own photos on your blog sparks the question… Well, where will I find photos that I can use on my blog?
Enter stock photos.
Stock photos are professional photos that can be used without having to worry about any copyright issues.
F.ex you can’t go to the Googles and use the photos you find in search – these photos will be copyrighted.
My favorite source for stock photos is Unsplash.
How Do I Promote My Blog Anonymously?
When blogging in secret, you’re not going to want to promote your blog to your family and friends on Facebook, and you probably won’t want to advertise your blog using your own name and face.
Enter Pinterest and Google SEO.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.
Very simply put…
It’s the way you optimize your blog posts so they can be found in search engines like Pinterest (yes, Pinterest is a search engine, believe it or not, it ain’t just about the pretty graphics) and Google.
I have taken both of these courses and have had great results from them.
In all honesty, I got over 1 million page views to my blog in my first year blogging – WHILE I was still blogging anonymously.
So let me tell you, even though you want to blog anonymously, having success with it and getting visitors is possible.
I am living proof of that.
If your budget is on the tighter side and you don’t have the money to invest in courses, scour the internet for free information to learn all there is to know about Pinterest and Google SEO.
I always recommend new bloggers start out with Pinterest as their main way of promoting and getting visitors to their blog because it is relatively “easy” for brand new bloggers to rank in search results.
Google is a bigger, more complex, and a long-term game.
It is possible to rank in Google but it will take time, effort, and patience.
To sum up, you can promote your blog and get strangers to find it without having to put your face and name on the line.
I’m telling you, it’s possible! Great news right?
How To Make Money With An Anonymous Blog
Let’s talk moolah.
You can of course make money with an anonymous blog.
There are several ways to monetize your secret blog.
You might have noticed blogs that have certain ads pop up between the text as you read their blog posts, in their sidebar, or at the bottom of their page – these are called display ads.
You get paid per click or per visitor that views the ad.
This is a form of passive income.
A code is placed on your site and you get paid depending on how many people visit.
The more visitors you have (page views) the more money you earn.
Examples of companies that place and run ads are Google Adsense, Mediavine, and AdThrive.
Simply put, affiliate marketing is when a blogger uses a special link on their website to link to another product or service who then tracks their links and compensates the blogger if someone buys or signs up for their service.
This is a very common way for bloggers to make their first few hundred dollars online.
Bloggers have to be transparent with their affiliate links and different companies have different rules that need to be followed.
Of course, only promote products that you have you used and genuinely believe in.
You can create your own digital products to earn passive income online.
You don’t have to get on video to showcase a product.
You can for example create a printable or an ebook that is relevant to your niche.
- Example niche: Productivity
- Example product: Planner printable
- Example niche: Food blogger
- Example product: Recipe round-up in the form of an ebook
For instance, some of the online products that I have created over the years are The Dreamer To Doer Academy (online course), Dreamer To Blogger (online course) and Dream Morning (ebook, no longer available).
This is my favorite way to make money blogging.
I love creating products for you guys!
Now it’s of course going to be difficult to earn an income through freelance work and other active income streams due to the fact that we’re trying to keep your identity hush-hush.
However, implementing one or more of the passive monetization strategies above is how I would begin monetizing your secret blog.
It’s how I made my first $1000 blogging – through affiliate marketing and ads.
Before You Go
While it certainly helps to have your face and name on your blog, there’s nothing that says that you can’t have success as an anonymous blogger.
I hope you’ve found this tutorial on how to start a blog anonymously and in secret helpful.
Remember to take online visibility in your own time and enjoy the growth process (because you will grow – A LOT).
I cannot wait to see what you create.