Given that blogging is such a new industry, it’s no wonder that many people at the sharp end are not sure what they are doing behind the scenes. Many of us just started a blog on a whim, wanting to see if we could make something of it. We began writing, gained a following, and things just went from there.
While there may be a percentage of bloggers who have a background in the publishing industry or are already self-employed, for many, it’s going to be a whole new experience. The same issues tend to crop up time and time again, so it makes sense to try and get the biggest worries dealt with.
1.Can A Blog Be A Full-Time Business?
It is possible to make your living solely from blogging; many people do, with varying levels of success. However, it tends to take a lot of hard work and even a pinch of luck.
It’s better to see your blog as a hobby that may become profitable. The moment you begin to make money from your blog is the moment you need to start thinking deeper about the mechanics of the business. Even if it’s not enough to make you a living.
2. Do I Have To Pay Tax On Blog Earnings?
This very much depends on your existing circumstances. You may need to register as self-employed with your government. If, for example, blogging is your only job, then you probably won’t have to pay tax until you cross your personal tax allowance. This might take awhile to build up.
If, however, you have a full-time job and are now earning money blogging additionally, then it becomes more complicated. The likes of AccountantsEastLondon.com will be able to point you in the right direction. Tax is an incredibly confusing area and one you don’t want to fall foul of, so don’t put it off.
3. What Other Laws Should I Be Aware Of?
One of the biggest blogger responsibilities is one that has a tendency to be overlooked: ensuring you are not copying or stealing.
Often, these transgressions are innocent. You run a Google Image Search for a product you want to feature and you find an image to use, so you save it. However, that image might be copyrighted, and if you use it without permission then you are breaking the law.
There is also a mistaken belief among novice bloggers that you can copy content from another blog, so long as you provide attribution and a link to the existing blog. This is content theft, and it can land you in a whole world of trouble. Not only do you not have the rights to the piece, but the original owner has the law on their side. They could even get your site shut down if they contact your host to say you have stolen content.
Luckily, avoiding this is pretty simple. Only ever publish unique content (both images and text) that you have produced yourself, or have direct permission to use.
Finally, if you work with sponsored posts/products, then you always have to declare they are sponsored. LondonBeautyQueen.com has a great overview of this if it’s a new area for you.