Are you wondering? how to start an online magazine? 🤔 If you’ve never created a website before, you might feel a little discouraged.
Fortunately, WordPress can simplify the process for you. This content management system (CMS) can help you create any type of website, including an online magazine. Using the right 🔨 tools, you can create a digital publication that your audience can enjoy both online and offline.
💡 In this article we will talk about:
Let’s get to it.
Are online magazines still relevant in 2022?
The basic definition of an online magazine is any publication that regularly publishes new issues. Blogs are not usually considered online journals because each post is a stand-alone post.
Magazines, on the other hand, contain multiple entries per issue;
With the magazine, you can dive deep into specific topics in each issue. Furthermore, your audience may be more willing to pay for a full publication than for individual articles.
The web is full of examples of premium magazines like Vogue, National Geographic, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, and more. However, this doesn’t mean there isn’t room for smaller, newer publications.
If there is enough interest in the topics you want to write about, you can build an online following and become an authority in your niche. You can then monetize your content through advertising, brand sponsorships, product features, and more.
What types of online magazines can you start?
Before you learn 👨💻 how to start an online magazine, you need to think about the type of publication you want to publish. Some famous examples include:
- Subscriptions. Readers pay a monthly or annual fee to access your magazine. This guarantees recurring revenue, but you need to make sure that new releases are published regularly to keep subscribers happy.
- Pay as you go. Allowing readers to pay for individual issues does not guarantee recurring revenue. However, it can help you attract customers who may not want to pay for a full subscription.
- Free periodicals. Releasing issues for free can help you reach a larger audience. Most magazines that do this monetize their work through advertising, sponsorships, and product placement.
- Freemium editions. This model involves releasing part of each issue for free (think of it as an example) and asking readers to pay for the rest. This can help draw attention to issues that may not otherwise be of much interest.
No matter what type of magazine model you choose to use, it’s important to understand that monetizing online publishing takes time. As with blogging, you need to learn search engine optimization (SEO) and use the right marketing strategies to reach your audience.
How to Create an Online Magazine with WordPress (5 Steps)
Now let’s see 🔎 how to create an online magazine with WordPress. As mentioned earlier, this popular CMS makes it very easy to launch a website and share digital content with users. You should.
Step 1: Research potential magazine niches
Researching your niche is the first step to launching any type of website or online business. More specifically, you need:
- Understand the niche. Publishing a magazine in a niche where you don’t have a specialty is almost impossible. It takes years to become an expert in a field, and if you don’t have that experience, or don’t have the money to hire people who do, your magazine may be dead in the water.
- Assess demand for content. The best way to understand the demand for a niche is to see how popular it is. Are there many sites that create content for this? Are the relevant keywords getting a lot of traffic? If the answer to both questions is yes, then you may have found the right place.
- Analyze the competition. If there is competition for the niche, how established is it? Are your potential competitors publishing articles every day? You can also look at the type of content they publish and see if you can provide something better.
This research can help you create an online magazine that resonates with your target readership. If you have a place with an audience that is ready for adoption, it can help get your magazine off the ground much faster.
Step 2: Identify your magazine’s ideal audience
Finding the ideal audience for your magazine goes hand in hand with the niche you choose. Different niches will appeal to different segments of the audience. If you have a niche in mind, you probably have a good idea of what kind of readers are invested in it.
To identify your target audience, you need to know the answer to two questions.
- What type of content do you want to publish?? For example, is it aimed at beginners or experts? Want to post tutorials or reviews? The type of content you publish will largely determine who reads it.
- What are the needs of your readers? Every magazine (or at least the successful ones) fulfill certain needs. For a publication to be successful, it must offer some value to readers, be it informational or emotional.
If you want more tips on how to identify the ideal audience for your magazine, you need to do some further reading. We have an article on how to identify your blog’s target audience. While blogs and magazines are not interchangeable, we cover many tips that apply to both.
Step 3: Find a name and register the domain
This next step is one of the most important (and fun) when creating an online magazine. Every successful magazine needs a big name, and yours is no exception.
If you are not sure what to choose for a name, we recommend that you stick to something that is related to your niche. You can quickly check domain availability by using a domain registrar like Namecheap.
You can also use a domain name generator such as Domain Wheel. These tools often come up with crazy name ideas, but they’re fantastic tools to get your creative juices flowing.
Once you’ve chosen a name, go ahead and register it. The process should only take a few minutes. If you choose a .com: top-level domain (TLD), it should only cost $10-15 (which you need to pay annually).
Step 4: Set up WordPress and choose a magazine theme
Next, you need to choose a web host to power your magazine website and then install the WordPress software.
If you’re not sure where to start, we recommend Bluehost because it has an easy setup process and cheap prices starting at just $2.75 per month.
Installing WordPress is relatively simple. Most web hosts offer a quick setup process where you only need to fill in some basic details about your website. If you use managed WordPress hosting, your provider can install WordPress for you.
Then you need to choose a theme. You can find many free magazine themes in the official WordPress theme repository.
We recommend choosing a fast and responsive theme. So you can make sure your magazine looks good on all devices.
Once you’ve chosen a theme, you can start customizing it using WordPress’ built-in settings, such as the Customizer.
Step 5: Work on your first issue and publish it
Once the website itself is ready to go, it’s time to start working on your first issue. When it comes to publishing your magazine on WordPress, you have several options.
- Publish articles as posts. Presenting journal articles as individual posts makes it easier for users to read them. Furthermore, this can help people find your content in search engines when searching for information. You can also make the article available as a downloadable PDF.
- Sell magazine issues as virtual products. WooCommerce works great for this approach because you can use it to sell digital products. If you want to offer the magazine for free, WooCommerce allows you to offer products for $0.
- Hide magazine issues in members-only sections. You can use membership plugins to hide parts of your site from non-members. This means you can charge for exclusive content and get regular magazine subscribers.
- Use a PDF viewer to post issues to your site. There are various tools you can use to embed PDF files on your website. They allow users to browse magazine issues without downloading them.
After publishing your first issue, you need to start marketing your magazine. You can use SEO to get organic traffic, promote the magazine on social media, or even use paid advertising if you have the budget for it.
Create your online magazine today 🏁!
Learning how to start an online magazine is no easy task. However, WordPress can make the process much simpler, at least from a technical perspective. Also, it can help you earn passive income through subscriptions and paid advertising.
To summarize, here it is how to start an online magazine in five easy steps:
🙋 After publishing your first issue, you can use these 👉 10 ideas to get traffic to your magazine.
Have questions about how to start an online magazine? Let us know in the comments section below.