Why hire freelance writers in Kenya?

When looking for a freelance writer to hire in Kenya, US, Canada, Australia or in any part of the world, there are many things – key characteristics – that you look for in your search for the right person to write content for you. For example:

You want to hire a content writer in Kenya…

1. Who knows a lot about the topic you are interested in

Getting someone who knows about your topic and enjoys reading, researching and writing about it is a good thing.Why hire freelance writers

The person who is genuinely interested in your niche or topic – and has extensive knowledge – always is a good fit.

Sometimes that means hiring someone who has a college (university) degree, diploma, Masters or a PhD in their field.

But this is always not the case… because there are many people who are knowledgeable (and experienced) and highly excel in their fields without a degree or diploma certificate carrying their name.

This is the case, for example, with people who have gone out of their way to learn about something (and become very good at it) that they never learnt in school.

People who have read widely on a topic – and even shared their own ideas in the form of articles, guides, ebooks, articles, podcasts, blog posts, case studies or videos.

For example, there are many savvy business people who don’t attribute their success to having a degree.

They attribute it to simply immersing themselves in the business world, doing what needs to be done, analyzing the results of their actions and adjusting accordingly in the interest of their clients.

Interest in a topic (field) then, besides pure knowledge and the duration and magnitude of experience, is one key thing to look for when hiring a freelance writer in Kenya.

The writer should know a lot in the field you want them to write about but not only that.

They should also be able to research a topic and write you the best content possible – one that you will be happy to pay for.

2. Who listens and adheres to your instructions

When you want to avoid all misunderstanding between you and your writer, communication is going to be key.

For the writer to give you what you are hiring them for, they must be keen and listen to your instructions. After all you are paying for what you want.

This means that it is good when you (both you and your writer) understand each other – and both parties understand their obligations.

You both should be clear about the topic, word count, headline (title), formatting, outline, deadline, pay among other things that at the end of the day makes the transaction between both parties fruitful.

3. Who can write well and give you what you and your readers want

Hiring a writer means, to some level, that you know what to be expected of them when they finally submit the finished work to you.

You know what to be expected in terms of the quality and quantity of the content you pay for.

You know what your readers want, and that is what you pay (the freelancer) to get them.

Different people call it different names: Epic, well-written, great content, quality content, best-seller, ultimate guide among others.

And your writer is to deliver the above on the deadline you both agree on.

What does the above have to do with hiring freelance writers in Kenya?

As a freelancer offering writing services here at Niabusiness.com, I adhere to the key points above when creating content for individuals, businesses, institutions and organizations in Kenya and around the world.

Through my writing service, you are assured of well written content on your topic of choice. Why? Because I adhere to the rules above.

They guide how I interact with you and how I create articles, blog posts, sales pages, ebooks, books, guides, ecommerce website product description pages you order from me.

I could go ahead and tell you how Kenyans are great people who write well and speak, besides our mother-tongue and Kiswahili, English fluently but then that will be venturing further away from what it is you really want: great content for your readers channeled through your website, blog, niche site, ebook, book, downloads, guides, tutorials, slides, social networking sites, email newsletters and autoresponders.

When you hire freelance writers in Kenya, do so with the knowledge that

  • they are great people from East Africa who write just as well as native English speakers
  • they enjoy writing and doing online research
  • they are knowledgeable and ready to help you with your writing
  • they take online freelancing seriously – meaning they respect themselves, their work, the clients who hire them and the audience they write for (readers you want to reach with the writing you outsource to them)
  • they are people open to suggestions if such suggestions lead to an even higher quality of writing and a more satisfied client
  • they’d like to partner with you in your future projects
  • and like most humans, they, at the end of the day want to bring a meaningful contribution to the world and the people in it

And when I say ‘they’, I’m indirectly implying that I’d like to work with you.

If you are a mind reader, you already knew that from the start right?

So, what do you say?

Go through more posts published on Niabusiness.com to learn more about the results and benefits you get when you hire me to create content for you to use on your own properties or third party platforms.

Sample blog posts to check before you hire me to create content for you

Check my writing samples here. In the link you will find a list of articles I have written on a variety of topics.

While looking at the recent blog posts I have published on Niabusiness.com, also take some time to check some of my most popular posts.

They are listed on the sidebar to the right.

Outsource content creation to me: Hire me as your freelance writer

To hire me, check my rates here and place you order.

Or just go through the blog post then get in touch with me for a quote.

Rates vary depending on the type of project or assignment you want to outsource to me.

Email me here: info@niabusiness.com. Tell me about your project.

If Kenyans are hard working, what are they doing right (or wrong) for themselves and the country?

I’m concerned about the hard working Kenyans who give up somewhere in the middle of the road.

The ones who loose their track and find it hard to get back on the right track.

I am concerned about the Kenyans who get distracted – the ones who find that the gap between their dreams and reality gets wider as days, weeks and months pass by.

The people of this country Kenya are hard working

We have, as a country, the people who, to us, are so hard working. These people know that we admire them. They know that we appreciate the fact that they are hard working.If Kenyans are hard working, what are they doing right (or wrong) for themselves and the country?

They also appreciate the fact that they haven’t exploited their full potential though somehow satisfied when people label their efforts ‘extra-ordinary’.

There is a group that delivers 65% instead of say 85%, a few ever take the time to move from 65% to 85%. Some will muster the courage to stretch a few points past 85%.

We also have the people who are working on things they don’t like – especially the many students in various universities, colleges and polytechnics in Kenya – and not to forget the many employed civil servants (including those in the informal sector like jua kali artisans) working various jobs and taking home paychecks.

So, someone works hard to become a pilot because that is what their family wants…when their true heart wants them to instill knowledge in young minds – become a teacher, tutor, instructor…

Some eventually grab their dreams. But as painful as few would like to admit, some never get out of their trap. They bring in the money but deep inside, they are poor fellows. Their happiness ‘bank account’ reads zero.

Let’s take a look at some examples.

P is a young Kenyan in his twenties. He likes writing and has been writing for some years now.

He has always wanted to make money off what he writes. He has taken a step towards that direction not thrice but ten times.

He knows he can make his dreams a reality. He knows he has taken several steps towards making his dreams a reality. He also knows that he hasn’t taken a bold step towards making his dreams come true.

Days pass and it is as if he’s contented with the level he was in a few months ago – usually takes one step forward and two backwards.

He also likes the word ‘if’. He’s caught himself saying ‘if this’, ‘if that’ several times but he hasn’t stopped.

He’s still wishing that time will come when God will create a perfect arena for him to show the world he can do great things. And so he’s still waiting.

How many people like that do we have in this country?

Mary is a mother of two who became a little bit successful (read: made more money).

She bought a car thinking all successful people must buy a nice car to show how hard they’ve worked (nothing wrong with that in certain circumstances).

She took her children to expensive schools – had to borrow heavily from banks to be able to pay their school fees at times. Bought her kids all the things they wanted to live a ‘worry-less’ life.

Success got into Mary’s brains. She got addicted. She clashed with people everyday. She belittled some… got a new pair of ear muffs whenever anyone attempted to give her good advice.

All factors didn’t stay constant

Her teenage daughter got into drugs – she had too much money on her hands and her mother never hesitated giving her more, let alone question what she did with the money – or teach her how to use it wisely.

Now mother and daughter are ‘enemies’.

Mary’s turned to the people she once hated and belittled for help because she now knows that a parent’s hard work is not only measured by how much money they can make but by the efforts they put towards ensuring their children are, and become, people of integrity.

There are numerous examples…can’t go through all of them here but will be glad to read your own examples.

What I am trying to say is that, we as a country, we are doing some amazing things. We are good people. Each one of us. We work hard, and there is hope for everyone to achieve their dreams and share the good things that come out of it.

What is our problem as Kenyans?

The problem is that we sometimes get distracted by petty things that don’t add much value to our lives. And that’s where we go wrong as Kenyans.

When will we stop waiting for the perfect time to focus and work those dreams we had from childhood?

How are we going to deal with the urge to flaunt our possessions and riches to everyone stirring envy and jealousy?

When will the many educated young men and women, dads and moms stop borrowing to maintain extravagant lifestyles that simply piles on us more stress than we want?

When will parents stop pampering children in the name of making things easier for them – feeding and fattening the little part in us that’s always feeling entitled?

When will parents and guardians, instead of just handing money to children and young adults, first teach them how to use it wisely?

When will we go easy on our need to raise ourselves above others and belittle people just because we think they deserve the bad treatment – because of their class, tribe, race, gender, impairment, social status?

When will we stop copying the crazy things other people do in the developed countries in the name of being a civilized society?

And how are we going to be more receptive to good counsel and constructive criticism?

The questions that will steer the people of Kenya in the right direction

Well, my advice to you and me is this: we can start by answering these questions. We can figure out why we do what we do as Kenyans – both the good and bad.

When that part is covered, it is going to be easier to come up with solid solutions to our own problems.

It is going to be easy figuring out what to do, for us to keep on doing more of the good things we already do on a daily basis.

And after that, it is time to walk the talk.

To say and do, even if others are lazy in changing their ways for the better.

If Kenyans are hard working, what are they doing right (wrong)?

Share your thoughts to this question in the comments section below. And if you know of anyone you think is a good role model in this area, mention them in your comment.

How virtual assistants in Kenya can prepare for work, clients (and be clear about what they want to do)

You have heard about how virtual assistants from the Philippines and other countries do well…getting clients…getting hired and paid well?

It is time to put more Kenyan virtual assistants (VAs) within reach of more work and good pay.

This article is a guide to help you be clear about what you want as a VA.

What you’ll find here will help you answer a lot of questions.

The answers to these questions will help you get work, reach more clients, promise, deliver, get your money and thank yous.

Why become a virtual assistant in Kenya?

Becoming a VA is not for everybody.How virtual assistants in Kenya can prepare for work, clients (and be clear about what they want to do)

It is something you shouldn’t try if the need to get money is so intense that you’ll try to do several things at once (which lead to a lot of frustration and overwhelm) or get in the trap of becoming unreliable (unavailable when needed, failing to meet deadlines, overcharging, doing a shoddy job, not saying no to work you can’t do).

Be clear about what you can offer first. Don’t rush into thinking only (99% of the time) about what you’ll get out of being a VA.

Think about what your clients will get from you.

It doesn’t always work like this, especially when you are desperate for work, but you can do it.

You can put more emphasis on fulfilling their needs, which in reality will work in your favour.

You can slam on those brakes and take things slowly; taking your time to do your best every time you get work.

What do you have to offer as a VA in Kenya? Examples of virtual assistant tasks [services clients can hire you for]

VAs do lots of things. So, when you are getting started, or getting distracted because of focusing on so much, cut down on the services you offer.

At least maintain a focus and branch out to other areas, as you grow and acquire new skills.

Why do this?

You get more experienced (in a specific area) and probably create an opportunity to meet more clients (in your chosen niche) because as you guessed it, if your work is awesome, chances of being recommended by your clients to others increases.

And then? You find that a client who came to you for help editing and proofreading their blog posts and ebooks, hires you to write tutorials, write and edit emails for their email subscribers, moderate discussions and respond to comments on their blogs.

Not every VA starts like this.

Not every VA works like this.

Some start by offering three, four, five, seven or ten services.

So, you have to choose what works for you and the people who hire you.

Talk about it with your clients.

Tools of the trade – what you need to start working online as a Kenyan virtual assistant

Get your own computer

A desktop is cheaper compared to a laptop, but you still can get decent used laptops from shops around cities and towns in Kenya.

Why you need a computer as a virtual assistant:

  1. because you don’t want your clients’ work scattered in public computers (like the ones in cyber cafes) or one that belongs to a friend or member of your family
  2. because it will save you more time and keep you from getting all jittery when a deadline is nearing
  3. because that way, you’ll reduce chances of introducing malware (if you take good care of your machine) to your files
  4. to reduce the chances of someone messing up your work, accidentally deleting what you’ve been working on for hours on end
  5. because your work will get easier. Now, imagine if you edit audio, video, create graphics, or have to customize WordPress themes but don’t have your own computer to work on? Can you do all this without a computer of your own? It is doable, but can be a little tough, especially when you lose something you’ve been working on for days
  6. because there are some things that need a test environment, and what a good place than a computer you own
  7. if your work involves a lot of writing, you want to make sure that you have a computer to work on whenever you want

Reliable internet

Going to a cyber café all the time can become an inconvenience after a while.

So, get a modem.

If your work is going to involve a lot of Skype calls, downloading and uploading of big files, you need a provider that can give you internet with speeds to achieve this.

Learn how to buy Safaricom internet bundles.

Backup

Do your best to protect your machine from anything that could destroy the data in it.

Get external drives that are large enough to hold copies of all the files that are important to you. Check the ones available on Jumia Kenya online shop.

There are also many online services that offer free storage.

You might want to check them out.

Online resources

You want to continue learning and constantly improving your skills because you love your work and you’re interested in helping your clients achieve their goals.

There are many resources ranging from free blog posts (e.g. how to become a freelance writer in Kenya – there are great tips to glean from the post – read it), ebooks, videos, podcasts, email (lists), courses to premium products. You can find some of those on this site.

Go out there and learn. Then implement. Meet other VAs and share.

Niabusiness.com web hosting and domain registration in Kenya for your websites and blogs

Want to do domain registration in Kenya for a new blog or website you are thinking of starting? Also looking for a provider of web hosting in Kenya to host your website, blog or online shop? Read on to learn how Niabusiness.com Hosting can help you get your website or blog going.

You’ve come to Niabusiness Hosting Kenya because you are looking for a domain registrar and web hosting company in Kenya to work with.

Meaning you are interested in starting a website in Kenya, starting a blog in Kenya, registering a new domain name or paying for web hosting.

We’d like to work with you – to help you achieve the goals you have in mind. Welcome to Niabusiness.com web hosting.

Here are our popular web hosting plans (more about them below)

  • Hosting
    Plans

  • Bandwidth

  • cPanel

  • Softaculous

  • Cost per month

  • Cost per day

  • Proven
  • KSh 16,000 a year

    7.5 GB disk space

  • 150 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 1334 

  • Less than KSh 44 

  • Mediate
  • KSh 11,000 a year

    5 GB disk space

  • 100 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 917 a month! 

  • Less than KSh 31 a day! 

  • Starter
  • KSh 6,000 a year

    2.5 GB disk space

  • 50 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 501 

  • Less than KSh 17 

  1. Proven. With 7.5 GB in disk space and 150 GB bandwidth, this hosting package goes for Kenya Shillings 16,000 a year. Get this.
  2. Mediate. With 5 GB in disk quota and 100 GB bandwidth, this hosting plan, a favourite, goes for an annual fee of 11,000 Kenyan Shillings. Get this plan.
  3. Starter. With 2.5 GB in disk space and 50 GB bandwidth, this plan, Niabusiness.com Hosting entry plan, goes for 6,000 shillings a year. Start your website (blog) with this plan.

The services we offer are tailored for persons coming from different backgrounds – individuals, businesses, SMEs, schools, companies and organizations in Kenya.

Not only does Niabusiness.com provide you with the tools and guidance you need to get web hosting for a blog (website).

We also help you every step of the way till your website (blog) is reachable to anyone with internet access using a web browser of their choice on any device they own (feature phones, smartphones, laptops, tablets and desktop computers).

Even once your site is made available online, Niabusiness will help you add pages, articles you write, photos you take and other features you need for your site to function the way you want.

Niabusiness.com helps you create your websites and blogs – and shows you how to make them do what you want them to do (the features you want).

The focus doesn’t end only with the features and affordability of the hosting plans we provide.

During the creation process, the aim of your website also receives due attention – for successfully implementing the ideas you have for your website (or blog) helps you, in a big way, to tap into the power that comes with having an online presence (the foundation of which is the right domain name, hosting plan and the site built on it).

Niabusiness.com web hosting Kenya plans and pricing (in Kenyan Shillings)

At this point, you are wondering about the costs involved and the time it takes for your website (blog) to go live once you finalize payment and send via email some of the content you want added on your new site.

We offer three hosting plans: Proven, Mediate and Starter.

  • Hosting
    Plans

  • Bandwidth

  • cPanel

  • Softaculous

  • Cost per month

  • Cost per day

  • Proven
  • KSh 16,000 a year

    7.5 GB disk space

  • 150 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 1334 

  • Less than KSh 44 

  • Mediate
  • KSh 11,000 a year

    5 GB disk space

  • 100 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 917 a month! 

  • Less than KSh 31 a day! 

  • Starter
  • KSh 6,000 a year

    2.5 GB disk space

  • 50 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 501 

  • Less than KSh 17 

Does that mean our web hosting plans in Kenya are the cheapest, expensive, affordable, reasonable or just rightly priced?

Let’s see.

A breakdown of the cost of each of the three web hosting plans in Kenyan Shillings

  1. Proven. With 7.5 GB in disk space and 150 GB bandwidth, this hosting package goes for Kenya Shillings 16,000 a year. That is less than 1,334 Kenyan Shillings a month (or less than KSh 44 per day). Get this.
  2. Mediate. With 5 GB in disk quota and 100 GB bandwidth, this hosting plan, a favourite, goes for an annual fee of 11,000 Kenyan Shillings. That is less than KSh 917 per month (or less than Kenya Shillings 31 a day)…less than what most Kenyan professionals and business owners use on their phones on a daily basis. Get this plan.
  3. Starter. With 2.5 GB in disk space and 50 GB bandwidth, this plan, Niabusiness.com Hosting entry plan, goes for 6,000 shillings a year. That is less than KSh 501 per month (or less than 17 shillings a day!). Start with this plan.

We’d say these are the right plans for you and any Kenyan keen on starting a website (or blog) with their mission being: doing their best to successfully implement ideas that helps them achieve the main aim of their website’s existence.

For example, you can start a website or blog with us with the following goals in mind:

  • to facilitate easier communication between you and your website’s audience,
  • to acquire new customers (online lead generation),
  • to set up a website that acts as an information hub – where you can spread your message (share tips, information, strategies or ideas)
  • to use your site for customer care agent purposes – where you answer questions your audience have in the form of blog posts,
  • to promote the products and services you offer to a segment of the market via inbound marketing, paid ads and email marketing
  • to magnify your brand’s presence by ranking highly on search engine results pages for certain keywords in your niche
  • to complement your presence on social networks and messaging apps where consumers spend most of their time online – while making your site the main hub for your activities online – and using inbound marketing to get people to take action on your site

We, as Niabusiness Hosting Kenya, work on setting up your website (blog) on WordPress self-hosted, installing the necessary scripts, apps, templates and themes and making sure your site runs smoothly – leaving you time to focus on the things that result in the highest conversions for your business or organization.

What you get with each web hosting plan from Niabusiness.com Kenya

All the three hosting plans (Proven, Mediate and Starter) come with Linux servers, cPanel to manage your website, blog scripts like WordPress, MySQL databases, configurations, emails (forwarding, creating new emails with your domain name in it, changing passwords), subdomains, free PHP scripts and website builders (WordPress, OpenCart, Joomla, Magento, Drupal), website optimization (for increased page load speeds, search rankings and security), file uploads, FTP access (including use of Filezilla to manage file uploads, copying and editing) and the ability to check your site’s logs (errors, traffic stats, keywords).

The amount you pay for any of the three hosting plans also covers the cost for domain registration of various popular extensions. More information here.

How do you proceed to host your blog or website with Niabusiness Hosting Kenya?

The most important thing to do, before letting the excitement that comes with starting a new website (or blog) lead you any further, is to think about what you really need a website or blog for.

Realize the immense benefits that come with owning and running a website or blog but also take into consideration the amount of work it takes to make any new website (blog) successful (achieving the goals you have for it from the onset).

If you are not privy to information that could help you prepare to be a successful website owner, check, as part of your planning, these 25 questions and answers on web hosting with Niabusiness.com. This is to further ensure that you are prepared to put in the necessary work required as a site owner so that, later on, you get a good return on your investment (the money you spend on the website or blog you host with Niabusiness)

Also take time to read the free PDF guide 32 reasons to start a blog (website) in Kenya. Click the link to download the guide. NOTE: The download link will be sent to your email address immediately. So, check your inbox.

NOTE: The guide is available as a blog post. Read it here.

Spending 16000 KSh, 11000 shillings or 6000 shillings a year for a domain name and web hosting requires a little planning beforehand, don’t you agree?

Educate yourself, at least on the basics of starting and running successful websites, if you are pressed for time.

You might also want to spend some time on Niabusiness.com web hosting blog to learn more about what it takes to build a successful blog or website in Kenya by going through some of the articles we’ve published.

  • Hosting
    Plans

  • Bandwidth

  • cPanel

  • Softaculous

  • Cost per month

  • Cost per day

  • Proven
  • KSh 16,000 a year

    7.5 GB disk space

  • 150 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 1334 

  • Less than KSh 44 

  • Mediate
  • KSh 11,000 a year

    5 GB disk space

  • 100 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 917 a month! 

  • Less than KSh 31 a day! 

  • Starter
  • KSh 6,000 a year

    2.5 GB disk space

  • 50 GB 

  • Yes 

  • Yes 

  • Less than KSh 501 

  • Less than KSh 17 

Once you are done with this part – and still want to start a blog or website in Kenya that you promise to work hard to make successful, send us an email via the contact form here on the kind of site you want to start, which hosting plan (Proven, Mediate or Starter) you want to pay for, the domain name you want us to register for you – and later (once payment is made) also send content you want added on your site e.g. text and photos for the various pages you want to be included on your site like About Us, Contact Us, Team, Services, Products, Testimonials, FAQ, Pricing, tutorials etc.

Note that we can also help you create an online shop on your website or blog – using WooCommerce ecommerce plugin for WordPress. Get in touch to inquire about this service.

Learn more about the benefits of hosting your website or blog with Niabusiness.com in Kenya

For more details on everything you get when you host your website or blog with Niabusiness Hosting Kenya, check this article (on hosting costs, packages and benefits) and this one (with the 25 questions and answers on web hosting and domain registration).

How to ask us your web hosting and domain registration questions

Checked the resources linked to above and still have a question? Get in touch with us via email here.

You can also learn more about our domain registration and web hosting services on our blog here.

Domain name registration prices in Kenya shillings for .co.ke, .com, .or.ke, .org, .ac.ke, .sc.ke, .co, .ug, .net, .biz …

If you want a domain name for your blog or website, Niabusiness.com Hosting Kenya can help you with choosing and registering one for your new or existing site. Niabusiness is a web hosting company in Kenya that helps persons register domains, get web hosting, create blogs, create websites and also start online shops.

How much does it cost to register a domain name with Niabusiness web hosting in Kenyan Shillings?

The price of  a domain name is included in the cost of every hosting plan we offer.

That means that when you pay for any of the hosting packages, you don’t have to pay extra for a domain name.

However, there are exceptions – and we are going to talk about them below.

Popular domain name extensions in Kenya and around the world

Every domain name has an extension. Some of the popular ones are the .com, .net, .org and .biz.

People (prospective clients, for example) can type your domain name directly in their web browser’s address bar to find your site without searching for your site’s name on search engines.

Extensions bundled with Niabusiness.com web hosting packages

The extensions .com, .net, .biz and .org are bundled with every hosting package sold to our customers.

That means that there are no extra charges if you register your domain with any of the four extensions. When you pay the cost of any of our hosting package currently available, there are no extra charges.

Extensions that used to attract extra charges but now are bundled with Niabusiness hosting plans

We used to charge extra for the extensions .co.ke, .co, .sc.ke, .ac.ke and others like .co.ug, .or.ke, .me, .name, .info.ke, .mobi.ke, ac.ug, .ne.ke, .go.ke, .or.ug,) will cost more.Domain name registration prices in Kenya shillings for .co.ke, .com, .or.ke, .org, .ac.ke, .sc.ke, .co, .ug, .net, .biz ...

  • For .co.ke and or.ke, you will no longer pay one thousand Kenyan shillings (KSh 1,000) more as used to be the case.
  • The extension .co will attract an extra, KSh 1,900 on top of the cost of your Niabusiness hosting plan.
  • And you will no longer pay the additional KSh 400 more for the extensions ac.ke or sc.ke – as used to be the case.
  • The .me extension costs an extra KSh 1500

For example, when you order the Mediate hosting package from Niabusiness Kenya, here are the amounts you will send to us via M-PESA if you go with an extension that’s not a .com, .net, .org or .biz.

  • For .co.ke or .or.ke – 11000 + 0 = KSh 11000 a year
  • For extensions ending with .ug – 11000 + 2700= KSH 13700 a year
  • For ac.ke and sc.ke – 11000 + 0 = KSH 11000 a year
  • For .co – 11000 + 1900 = KSH 12900 a year

Note that all domain names are renewed every year.

You can pay for more than one year upfront if you want that.

Other domain name extensions that do not attract extra charges include: .ne.ke, .info, .go.ke, .mobi.ke, .info.ke, .me.ke, .us, .de, and .in.

If the price of the extension you want to be a part of your domain name is not included above or if you just want to ask us questions in regards to your domain name and hosting needscontact us to get more information.

Choosing and registering a domain name in Kenya with Niabusiness Hosting

Choosing a unique, easy to remember domain name is very important.

When choosing a name, it is a good to come up with a great name.

it doesn’t have to take you days to do this unless there is a good reason.

An existing or new business can simply use their name and pick an extension like .com or .co.ke to go with it.

For inspiration, you can look at the domain names of other sites you frequent. Look at the names of the blogs and websites you visit on a regular basis. Or even the apps you use a lot. Look at the names of the companies behind them. Look at some of the popular brands you use.

Doing all this will give you more inspiration (and help you come up with a great domain name for your blog, website, online shop, business, side hustle, company, organization or institution).

What if the domain name you want to register is already taken?

  1. Use the same name with a different extension provided the use of the name doesn’t infringe on any person’s copyright or intellectual property rights.
  2. Come up with a different name. Talk to others and listen to their suggestions. Write some names on paper. Then choose the best name.

Can you help me come up with a domain name for my site?

Yes.

You can come up with a list first, even if it only has two names.

We will discuss with you, make suggestions then allow you to make a decision on which name to go with based on our discussion.

Who can use the domain extensions .co.ke, .sc.ke, .ac.ke, .org or .com?

  • .sc.ke – meant mainly for kindergarten, primary and secondary schools in Kenya
  • .com and .co.ke – meant mainly for commercial enterprises – businesses, companies. .co.ke extension is fit for commercial entities in Kenya
  • .ac.ke – meant mainly for institutions of learning like colleges, polytechnics and universities in Kenya
  • .org – meant mainly for organizations, foundations

Can I register and pay for a domain name without buying web hosting?

If you don’t have the money to pay for a hosting package now but want to reserve your domain name and pay for hosting later get in touch.

Click here to get your blog website now

Web hosting in Kenya for blogs and websites – costs, packages and benefits

If you are looking for a web hosting company in Kenya, or a business that offers such a service, for your new or existing blog or website, read on below to learn more about what Niabusiness Hosting offers its clients.

WordPress only hosting in Kenya for blogs and websites at Niabusiness.com

To make things simpler, faster and efficient, Niabusiness.com Web Hosting Kenya only offers clients the WordPress script. That is the script that will power your site once we allocate you server space and get you the domain name you want.

Of course, you are free to use any other script apart from WordPress, to power your website or blog. For example Joomla, OpenCart, Magento, Drupal and others.

Is there a good reason for this – why Niabusiness.com uses WordPress self-hosted script to build blogs and websites for its clients in Kenya?

Yes, there is. WordPress, the self-hosted version, makes it easy for individuals, organizations, institutions and businesses in Kenya to get online, publish content, manage their sites and connect with others easily.

Easily doesn’t mean that there’s no work involved. In fact it can take a lot of effort to build a great blog or website that attracts the right kind of traffic.

Learn more about what goes into building a website in our FAQ page here.

Here is what you get when you choose Niabusiness hosting service to create your blog or start your website in Kenya

Whether you are an individual who needs a personal blog, a business, a not-for-profit organization, a foundation, an institution of learning, a leader, a freelancer, a company, a partnership, a firm, an entrepreneur, an author or affiliate marketer …

1. You get a clear direction, from us, on what steps to take right from the beginning

We understand the power a blog or website gets its owner – and the very things one needs to do to get this power and use it for their good and the good of those who come to their sites.

We will help you decide what to publish on your site, how to organize the content you add to your site, when to launch your site, how to promote it and this: how to build a site focusing mainly on what you want it to do without complicating things.

2. We will install WordPress and set up your website

When you pay for web hosting, whether a domain name is included in that or not, most web hosting companies let you upload files to your site by yourself.Web hosting in Kenya for blogs and websites - costs, packages and benefits

A lot of times you are also to install the script to power your site by yourself.

Why?

Because it saves them time and allows them to focus on other things like acquiring and tending to new customers; and two because it is assumed that setting up everything is easy?

Is it, really?

That depends on the person you ask.

But since the installation is a ‘one time thing’ many clients are glad to work with someone who does this for them… adding the right plugins and configuring everything.

Niabusiness Hosting Kenya sets up your WordPress site for you. During this process, you are also welcome to share your thoughts and suggestions.

If you know your suggestions will result in the kind of site that you want, or better, feel free to share them with us.

3. Niabusiness hosting helps you focus on what matters right from –

selecting and registering a domain name, choosing a hosting package with enough disk quota and bandwidth, building your new site and promoting it.

Some people think that once their site is set up, everything is, and will be, just fine.

They forget about their new site, end up frustrated while trying to fix fatal errors on their sites and sometimes even blame their hosting provider for unreliable service when they are the ones at fault.

We will seek details about what you want, so that you can get direction on how to make your site a success.

The good thing with this is that it saves you a lot of time.

If you are a person who is really interested and willing to work very hard to build a successful blog or website in Kenya, we’ll do our best to help.

4. We will help you tighten the security of your site

Sites are getting hacked every hour, every single day.

Our hosting service will continually keep an eye on things and work together with you to improve your site’s security.

How much does the WordPress hosting service cost: prices of Niabusiness hosting plans in Kenyan Shillings?

You can see the costs of all our hosting packages here. We love to work with clients who see their blogs, websites as investments.

These are not people who just settle for cheap, throw a site together and leave it to wither.

Most people don’t realize that sometimes cheap hosting cost way more.

How? Time.

How many consider the time they’ll be spending on different aspects of their site? Very few.

Our hosting service saves you time and keeps the frustration most site owners suffer far away – from you.

Some of the things most web hosting companies leave you to take care of on your own are handled for you when you host with us.

This leaves you with more time to focus on building connections online, getting more traffic, working on your site’s conversions, creating more content for your blog, getting more email subscribers among other things.

The amount you pay for the hosting package of your choice isn’t steep. It is affordable – and for what it gets you, paying only that should be viewed as a good investment on your part.

It is all about looking much further down the road, to pay more now rather than paying even a bigger figure a few weeks or months to come.

The amount  gets you server space and a domain name for your site (with top level domain extensions .com, .net, .org or .biz). You can read more about getting a domain name with the extensions .co.ke, .co, .or.ke, .me, .sc.ke, .ac.ke, .name, .info.ke, .mobi.ke, .ne.ke, .go.ke, .co.ug, .ac.ug .or.ug, here.

How do I get started with Niabusiness Hosting Kenya?

To host your blog or website with us, make sure you really want this because spending money on a domain name and hosting just for the sake of it doesn’t sound right.

Be ready to work on your site so that it can do what you want it to do.

Ready? Click here to view and purchase a hosting plan.

After selecting a hosting plan, click Add to Cart > View Cart or Proceed to Checkout > Fill in your details like name, email address, postal address and phone number > Click Place Order.

After placing your order, send payment for the total amount of your order via M-PESA. Otherwise, make payment via PayPal – by choosing the PayPal option in the payment section of the checkout page.

We’ll get to work when payment is received.

The How to Start a Successful Blog ebook and online course

When you host your site with us you can also buy and download your copy of the ebook How to Start a Successful Blog – or get both the ebook and e-course as well.

This is a great ebook for individuals and businesses who are not just contented with owning a blog or, website, but who know they can do more and get more out of their investment.

Other things we’ll help you do

You will also get assistance with the following: setting custom emails with your domain name, verifying your site with search engines (using your Gmail & Outlook email addresses) like Google, Bing and the site, Alexa, setting Google+ authorship, setting up your email list, adding email opt in boxes to your site, sitemap submission, plugin installation and configuration, integration with social networking sites etc.

And we’ll be here to answer your questions and guide you.

Also remember that if you need help with more than these, you can get in touch, get a quote and get the work done.

Click here to purchase a web hosting plan of your choice now

How to start a business blog in Kenya: a site for entrepreneurs

Ever wanted to know how to start a blog in Kenya that shares business and entrepreneurship tips? If you are a Kenyan entrepreneur, successful business owner, business coach or consultant chances are there are a lot of things you know that the young people of Kenya, chama  (investment group) members and the owners of small, micro and medium enterprises in Kenya can learn from you and use to grow their own businesses.How to start a business blog in Kenya: a site for entrepreneurs

It doesn’t matter if your business is making millions or billions of Kenya Shillings in profits every year.

What matters is the kind of expertise you have that when shared can benefit more people – making the Kenyan economy even better.

More and more young people in Kenya are embracing entrepreneurship – doing their best to solve the problems of their fellow citizens.

You can show them how to do this profitably, by sharing your business lessons with them.

Continuing with the how to start a blog in Kenya series, let’s look at…

Why start a business blog in Kenya?

For many reasons really. Some of these reasons include:

Start a blog to share tips with those who want to start their own businesses or those with young businesses

To help those who have started their own businesses sell more of their products and services, you can share, on your newly created blog, marketing and sales tactics (strategies) that have worked for you.

You can share why you narrowed down on these tactics & strategies and not others.

You can share how you stumbled upon these strategies, how you executed them, the challenges you faced when implementing your business plan, the tweaks you made and the results you got from all your effort and hard work.

Many people who venture into businesses, even the social entrepreneurs in Kenya struggle with sales.

And patience – growing slowly if you will.

And sticking to one business idea instead of trying to do many things at once – juggling business idea after business idea that end up failing a few short months after they’ve come to birth.

Many business owners also struggle with carving out a niche for their products in the highly competitive markets in Kenya and around the world where consumers have lots of options to choose from.

Share your strategies.

Show others how you go about getting people interested in what you offer, how you go about warming up leads, how you build relationship with them, how you present your offers, what guarantees you make, what benefits you sell to them.

Show others how you ensure consumers know you take your responsibilities as a business owner seriously.

Show them how you close sales and what you do next to ensure the people that buy from you become loyal and repeat customers, buying more from you and recommending you to their circle of friends.

Show them what you do when a client is disgruntled and they either want their money back or need a replacement of whatever it is they bought from you.

Start your blog and show others how you’ve built your brand. How you’ve set goals and beat your own deadlines.

Show others, in your articles, how you’ve been able to overcome all the challenges you’ve faced and continued to grow.

Show others how God your Creator has been instrumental in both your personal life and business growth.

Show others how the relationships you maintain have helped you grow as a person and business owner.

Share stories of role models, leaders, CEOs, founders and other business owners that have inspired you to keep working hard to cater to the needs and wants of your clients.

Share leadership and management tips – some you’ve learned the hard way and the ones you’ve learned the easy way – if there ever is such a thing in your worldview.

Share the lessons you have learnt about recruiting, hiring personnel, outsourcing, sniffing for talent, staffing, payroll and taxation tips.

When you write and publish articles on these areas, soon your blog will become a great resource for many people. Your blog will become a place people stop by to get ideas to grow their businesses.

Your blog will become a place people get value for every internet bundle they pay for – and end up spending reading your posts.

Your blog will not be for everyone interested in business. Some will read your posts and then do nothing thereafter with the great advice they get from you.

But some will take your words, find ways to use them to grow their ventures and take massive action.

In a way this (you sharing business tips on your blog) aligns with the reminder to always be your brother’s keeper. To share now, when you can. And not wait. For no one knows the mysteries of tomorrow.

While sharing your successes, failures and struggles, you can also publish articles sharing the success stories of other Kenyan entrepreneurs and business owners as well.

Start a blog to recommend books, ebooks, courses, coaching, lawyers, advocates, software, products, various services and consulting that has been beneficial to you in starting and growing your business

On your search for the best talent, advice, labour, hardware, software, apps, tips and even machinery to use in running your business operations, you’ve come across many great things and people that other Kenyans new to the business world haven’t come across.

You can write posts sharing, with your readers, all these great resources you have come across online and offline.

Tell them about the great people you have come across in networking events, seminars, conferences and summits you have been to.

Tell them about investors you’ve come across.

Tell them about the great advice you’ve received from the staff of the institutions you bank with.

Tell them about some of the great tips your attorney has shared with you.

Tell them about the great feedback you have received from your customers that have helped you reinvent yourself and continue building a strong business brand.

Tell them about great books and ebooks you’ve read.

Tell them about online courses and classes you’ve taken and how they’ve benefitted you.

Tell them about the apps you use to deal with repeated tasks, schedule appointment, improve communication between you and the employees and between your team and the customers.

Some will appreciate you writing articles of this nature. And you won’t run out of ideas for new articles to publish on your blog.

Who are you targeting with your business blog?

Given the different types of businesses people start in Kenya, it’s good to be clear about your blog’s ideal reader – the person your posts will serve best.

It’s good to know them. To know where they are starting from.

To know the things they are struggling with.

To know what they are trying to accomplish.

And then giving them content that speaks to their needs.

You can therefore decide to:

Start a business blog that targets everybody interested in starting and running their own business

The people reading your blog will be coming from different industries and niches – and they’ll have different motivations for coming to your blog.

Employees will visit your blog to learn more about what founders want.

Managers may visit your blog to learn more about how to delegate efficiently.

Founders may come to your blog to read the stories of other founders, to read your story or to read the kind of feedback some of your posts elicits in the comments section.

Suppliers may come to your blog to learn how to deal with vendors – to learn about the dos and don’ts of working with retail businesses, with shops and mall space dedicated to them and those that have internet-only presence like some online shops, classifieds websites and auction marketplaces.

Start a business blog targeted at those starting their ventures

In a blog like this, you can share your own story starting out.

You can write posts about the struggles you had to face and the lessons you’ve learnt.

You can share how you dealt with issues of capital, bank loans, packaging and selling of your products and services, sales, book keeping, registering a company website / blog, limited liability company registration with Kenya’s registrar of companies, tax issues and employee benefits issues…

Start a blog targeting those who have started and have established businesses

Established businesses often have some challenges that are different from the ones faced by new businesses.

You can start a blog that publishes articles to help these businesses overcome their challenges.

Publish articles to help these businesses simplify their processes – in the interest of their owners and the customers they serve.

If you go this route, you’ll publish articles showing these businesses how to grow with less bloat.

You’ll also publish articles to help these businesses stay true to the promises they make to their customers.

Articles that champion wise spending – and strategies that help them grow their brands and expand without their profits taking a hit in a way that would lead to sudden demise.

You’ll also publish articles to help these businesses remain innovative in everything they do without rolling their eyes to the already good strategies and processes they have in place.

You’ll also publish articles to help these businesses hire the right people – articles that will show these business owners what to do to get more out of the contributions of their employees while treating them cordially and respectfully.

In a blog like this, you’ll also be free to share stories from other companies that highlight their successes and some stories that act as cautionary tales to business owners who want to move too fast (or too slow):

  • in growing their businesses
  • in aligning themselves with current trends and what their competitors are doing
  • in selling more of their products to their customers
  • in capturing new markets
  • in reinventing themselves.

Start a blog targeting people who run online businesses

If you are knowledgeable – and have success with internet service businesses – by running your own SEO agency, digital marketing agency, content marketing agency, or a virtual staffing and outsourcing business, write posts that tell your story and publish them on your blog.

You can also highlight the stories of other business owners who have built profitable businesses in this space.

If you have launched and run a profitable app or SaaS business (software as a service), share your story.

Share your tips, tactics, strategies and the challenges you have overcome (and how you executed your plan) to build a profitable business in this area.

If you are good at building content businesses  (online media companies) either by creating profitable authority sites or niche blogs that you have monetized with ads like AdSense, affiliate programs like Amazon or your own products, services, membership site section, share your tips on your blog.

People interested in businesses like these will thank you for sharing your story, answering their questions and for highlighting the success of others doing similar things.

The same goes for people who have started other types of internet businesses. Start a blog – and share your story. Show others how you overcame the challenges that cropped up in front of you to build a successful business in your space.

Start a blog targeting foreigners who want to invest their money in Kenya by starting businesses in the country

If you are an expatriate running a business in Kenya, others could benefit from your knowledge on how you got started – and how you’ve kept going.

How you’ve dealt with visa (work permit) issues.

The occasional bureaucracy and the crippling feeling that almost made you give up on working on your business and turning it into a profitable business that serve the Kenyan people.

You can also publish articles highlighting the struggles businesses in your niche or industry are facing on a daily basis.

Set up your own blog and share your story.

Share your failures and successes.

Share your tips to closing sales and keeping your business growing.

Share your story about how you went about registering your business in Kenya or other countries, how you raised the initial capital and how you work, together with your staff (and others who have a stake in your business like suppliers – even the national and county governments), to build a business that is profitable, socially responsible, ethical in its dealings and innovative in its space.

Choose the topics you want to write about from the ideas I’ve shared above and then decide whether to also include

Business news. How? By writing commentaries from what you read in Kenya’s daily newspapers and other business and investment journals and news outlets from around the world.

Interviews of other entrepreneurs, government officials, people you meet while networking, business authors, Kenyan leaders of various capacities and all the clients doing business with you.

Business regulations in Kenya. Bring to the attention of your readers new laws that have been passed by the national assembly and county assemblies. Laws that have been amended. Laws that have been repealed…and even opinion pieces whenever necessary – for example the effects these laws have had on your business.

Content related to what other business blogs in Kenya are writing about. Visit other blogs in this space and study them. See what you can learn from them – and use your new inspiration for new articles to publish on your own blog.

Register a domain name, get web hosting for your blog and publish content

When you are ready to carve out a space for yourself on the internet where you share your ideas, stories and tips, register a domain name for your blog, pay for web hosting and then start publishing and promoting your content.

Niabusiness.com can help you with domain registration and hosting, if you want to. Learn more here.

With the help of Niabusiness.com you’ll have more time to spend creating content to publish on your site instead of spending hours upon hours tinkering with WordPress, plugins, themes and any other services you decide to use on your blog.

If you want to choose a web hosting company on your own and setup your blog by yourself check the post things to consider before paying your money to any of the best web hosting companies in Kenya.

In Conclusion

Your blog can include all the above mentioned ideas if you are up to publishing a lot of articles every week.

Just make sure that your plan going forward includes only ideas that align with the reasons you want to start a blog in the first place.

If you are pressed for time, you can just start writing and publishing a series of posts on one topic you know about, then cast your nets wider, to cover more topics, as time goes by.

Running a business blog of your own will benefit your readers a lot.

On the flip-side, you’ll also benefit from the interactions that take place between you and your blog visitors.

You’ll also learn some interesting things when you look at your analytics to see the search terms people type in search engines before arriving on your blog.

The search terms section of your WordPress powered blog will also be a great trove for ideas for new post, products and services.

You’ll also learn a lot from the emails people leave you via your blog’s contact form or in response to newsletters you send your email subscribers.

To start your blog, know what you want to write about, register a domain name, get web hosting, setup your blog and start publishing articles to it.

If you have a question, tip or story you’d like to share with me and other readers, leave a comment below.

5 misconceptions stopping more Kenyans from starting blogs

Call them lies or misconceptions, in this part of how to start a blog in Kenya series we look at some of the things that are stopping more Kenyans from starting their own blogs.

So, below are some things people have read on other websites or been told by someone they asked about blogging – its benefits and how to get started.

That starting a blog in Kenya is expensive?

A friend told me they heard and always thought that starting a blog cost 16,000 Kenyan Shillings.

May be the person who told her this was talking about a specific hosting plan from a particular web hosting company they came across…because as it so happens many hosting companies package their plans differently – resulting in the variations in pricing.

Truth is, you don’t need that much money to get started.

Many web hosting companies in Kenya have very cheap yet reliable hosting plans.

They don’t charge you a fortune to register a domain name either.

In fact, some of the prominent hosting companies in Kenya like Kenya Website Experts have web hosting plans that go for Kenya Shillings 1,000 a year – or less.

Niabusiness also helps bloggers, businesses, writers, professionals, organisations and freelancers in Kenya to start their own blogs and websites.

Available to prospective clients are three hosting plans to choose from. And detailed guides on how to go about choosing a hosting company, WordPress hosting, and a few important details to pay attention to from the onset – all meant to help anyone who wants to start their own blog or website to make buying decisions in line with the budget they have set aside to go towards creating their own site.

So, if you have a little money, you can still afford to pay for a domain name and have your own self-hosted WordPress blog, with your content available to anyone with internet access.

As time goes by and you get more readers, you’ll upgrade your hosting plan to one that offers much more superior features – more disk space to store your blog’s files and databases and a larger bandwidth allocation – to handle the increased traffic to your blog.

But now that you are just starting out, you don’t necessarily have to worry about getting more resources – for a new blog that is yet to even get its first few visitors.

Find decent hosting, create content, publish it on your blog, promote the content, build your email list. And do this consistently. That’s how you’ll grow momentum.

Your blog can even pay for itself down the road, if you decide to create a product / offer a service and sell it on your site or monetize the content you publish with Google Adsense ads, other ad network you fancy or affiliate marketing.

That making money blogging, just writing and publishing articles, is easy

It’s easy once you get into the flow of writing consistently, on a daily basis, even if you don’t publish new articles to your blog every day.

But it takes a lot of effort when you are just starting out; especially when you are starting a new blog that has no authority and receives little to no organic traffic from search engines.

It takes effort to consistently look at new blank pages every day and to fill them.

It takes effort to re-read what you have written.

It takes effort to polish it before you release it to the public by publishing it on your blog.

But once you embrace the grind and commit to building a successful blog, one day at a time, you will increase your chances of making money with your blog:

In fact, if you don’t want to promote any affiliate products or create and sell your own products or services, you can still earn decent money with display ads as long as your blog gets lots of traffic.

But most blog owners test different monetization methods and make their money from different sources (a combination of ads, affiliate marketing, membership site section, sales of products and services, subscriptions or even proceeds from donations).

If you put in the work and write hundreds or thousands of great articles and promote them well, making money blogging by just writing and publishing articles will be ‘easy’ – because at that point you will have put in a lot of work into your blog and embraced working hard every day to grow it into the best blog you can possibly build.

You can also just publish a handful of posts then focus most of your attention in promoting them and getting lots of people to read them – and still make a tidy sum.

It’s easy, if you embrace the work – and consistently work on improving and growing your blog. Just remember that embracing the hard work is not an easy thing to do for many people.

That starting a blog, installing WordPress and setting up everything, blog design and all, is complicated

If you’ve read up a little bit on WordPress, the process isn’t complicated at all.

There are lots of tutorials on the web you can read, lots of how-to videos on YouTube you can watch – so that you set up everything correctly.

In fact, Niabusiness.com has this ebook and online course with step by step instructions on how to setup your blog, that you can get from the online shop section of the site and pay for via PayPal, VISA, MasterCard or Safaricom M-PESA.

From registering a domain name, getting web hosting, installing WordPress, installing plugins, installing a theme and setting up everything to work correctly, paying attention to the instructions in the various screens you’ll be looking at, in the various websites you visit – like that of the hosting  company you choose, will be all you need to setup your blog.

You don’t need technical know-how to run a blog. You can always get help when you are stuck. To query search engines or check WordPress resources published on this section of Niabusiness.com blog, for example.

After all, most of these setups are a one-time thing.

That blogs are fads and that bloggers in Kenya are not taken seriously

Blogs are not fads.

Look at blogs as books or bookshelves or magazines or newspapers – with great content for those whom such content can benefit.

Bloggers are publishers – only restricted by the amount of knowledge, stories and posts they can share with their readers.

There will be people who won’t take you seriously as a blogger.

That doesn’t mean that their presence therefore means that there won’t be people who will like your content – and be thankful for coming across your blog – and reading your posts.

There are some bloggers that give others a bad rep – telling lies on their sites – like the rotten apple that spoils the rest. But then the same thing happens in many other niches and industries.

All you have to do is write and publish the best content possible. Then promote it. Some will like what you put out there. Some won’t. Just keep writing.

As long as you help even one person, that still means a lot – to you and the person you help. No need to stress about whether everyone who comes across your blog will like you or not.

That one needs a lot of authority and expertise to write on a topic to get people to even listen to them

Authority matters.

Being an expert on a topic you want to blog about is also a good thing.

But you are not writing a book – and even if you plan on writing one in the future, I’m trying to make the point that you should see your blog as an outlet where you share your stories, tips, advice and ideas with a friend.

Approach blogging this way instead of worrying about expertise too much.

When you talk to a friend, advising them, what you do is giving them accurate information.

To tell them the truth.

To not mislead them.

To point them to other resources they might find useful – when it is necessary to do so.

You usually don’t care if you have a Master’s degree or a PhD in the subject matter.

Treat the people who come to your blog the same way – like a friend.

Post content that is truthful. Articles that gives them what they are looking for.

You can even make the articles you produce more in-depth by doing research, interviewing experts in the niche, industry or professional field your blog operates in…then sharing all the great info and stories you gather with the public through the posts you publish.

Whenever there is something you want to write about that may need an expert to chime in, just narrow down on a few and email them your questions.

Most people approached by bloggers for interviews usually say yes.

They realize that the knowledge they share will go towards helping readers who come to your blog.

Of course some will say no, but then that’s life.

If someone doesn’t have the time to answer your question for one reason or another, you can always find someone else to say yes.

You can also get more involved in your niche by reading other blogs, taking classes and online courses, getting a mentor in your field, borrowing books from the library, reading biographies and autobiographies of prominent people in your niche, buying and reading books and ebooks or even going through research papers you find on the internet and offline.

And then you can teach, gauge the feedback you get from your readers and peers, then make the necessary changes.

The truth about how to create your own self-hosted WordPress blog in Kenya

There are many Kenyans who started humbly when it comes to blogging and have over the years grown really popular and profitable blogs.

I did an interview with Walter Akolo where he shared a lot of tips you can use when you decide to create your own blog.

You can easily register a .co.ke or .com domain, get web hosting and begin publishing articles.

You have an equal opportunity to build a great a blog as any other Kenyan or citizens of other countries.

If you have access to the internet, even if from a cyber cafe, can type (or get someone to do it for you), edit your content and do this consistently, you are good to go.

Read this interview I did with Marcus Sheridan to learn how over a year of consistent blogging (publishing 3 -4 articles a week) your blog can grow – and start bringing in the results you expected.

And once you are done reading the two interviews I’ve linked to above, read the post Reasons to start a blog – because it pays to have a strong foundation for which your blog is built upon.

This is important now that you are considering giving blogging a go.

But it will be even more important in the slow days when quitting blogging feels like the right thing to do – even if you know in your heart that you should stay at it and continue building your blog.

Once you have the money to pay for registering a domain name and web hosting, read this post to see how I can help you start your own blog.

If you want to work with a different hosting company, in or outside Kenya, you are also welcome to do so.

Pay for the domain, get web hosting, set up your blog and start publishing quality in-depth content to it (some short blog posts and some long form content).

In Conclusion

If you have read this far and still want to start your own blog despite the monumental tasks ahead, then you are ready to have your own blog.

Go through the blogging resources and interviews I’ve published to learn more from other successful bloggers.

And also remind yourself that it will take a lot of consistent work over the long haul to build your blog to be what you desire it to be.

If there is something in the post that you’d like me to clarify, please let me know in the comments below. You can also share your stories, questions or blogging successes and failures in the comments section as well.

Gossip blog (website) in Kenya: How to start one on WordPress

There are many gossip blogs in Kenya – popular with young people. Call them entertainment blogs or gossip blogs, Kenyans flock to these sites to get recent news on celebrities from Kenya and those visiting the country for shows and live performances.

This post, part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series – a series filled with lots of ideas for people who want to start successful blogs of their own, will show you how you can go about creating your own entertainment blog.

Which people do gossip / entertainment blogs in Kenya write about?

Mostly public figures. People with influence. People with fans. Celebrities.

Think musicians. Singers. MCs. Rappers. Actors. Actresses. Athletes. Politicians. Sports personalities like footballers. Comedians. Up-and-coming artistes. Business people. DJs. TV show hosts and news anchors. Radio presenters. And those in the circle of the popular showbiz personalities.

When starting your blog, it’s important to know this.

For this knowledge will come in handy when you are doing your daily research on what to write about, deciding who to follow on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Or when you are deciding where to look for (sources) your own stories, or looking up trends for opportunities to quickly capitalize.

Or even when you go out there looking for persons to sponsor your blog – for example by buying advertising space on your site or sending you sponsored posts to publish on your blog.

Why start a gossip blog (site) in Kenya?

For one, they are popular. Not all of them, but many of them. If you put in the hard work, your blog will grow.

Two, it is easy to get what to write about if you know where to look for stories and are willing to work hard and publish multiple articles, photos, videos and interviews throughout the week.

Three, running these types of sites can be very lucrative. If you publish credible stories on your site consistently, you’ll get readers – and then you can leverage your platform for joint ventures (JV).

You can do this with artistes, recording studios, establishments like restaurants and hotels, telcos like Safaricom, Airtel and Orange, county governments, online shops and various businesses, foundations and non-governmental organizations that can benefit from sharing their message with your blog visitors.

You can also supplement moneys coming from the JVs by using display ads from ad networks like Google Adsense and others. Or even monetize your blog using affiliate marketing and direct ad sales.

Four, you don’t have to work on your blog full-time especially when you are just starting out and have other commitments – like working your job or going to class.

If you can quickly study trends, see hot stories before every site writes about them, quickly create content and promote it (with or without paid advertising), you can run your blog on 1 to 3 hours a day – since most articles in this niche are short.

What can you learn from the top gossip websites in Kenya – that you can copy?

Here are a few things to look at, to learn from, and then make work for your blog and schedule.

Frequency of articles published on these blogs

Popular entertainment blogs in Kenya are updated at least once a day.

The most popular ones are updated multiple times a day.

Some publish 10 articles every day.

Others publish between 10 and 15 blog posts per day. Yet others publish 20, 25 (or even 30 on occasion) posts per day.

You can do with less especially if you are a one man / woman operation. But shooting for a higher number of published posts is a good thing if you want to build a great blog in this niche.

The more content you publish, the more posts there will be for readers to look at.

The more posts are published, the more shares these sites get on social networking sites and messaging apps.

Google and Bing search engines also crawl these sites more, ranking them in positions where they are able to draw in more organic search traffic.

The headlines used in these blogs spark curiosity

Think click-bait.

Not all the time. But most of the time.

In this niche, some of the popular blogs use curiosity-inducing post titles to get people to click and read (or skim read) their articles.

And at the end (and sometimes inside the articles themselves) are links to other related articles where the same headline techniques are used, resulting in more pageviews, more shares and more ad revenue.

Study how these blogs write their headlines.

Check the titles of their posts that get a lot of pageviews. Learn how they craft their titles and content. Then apply your knowledge to your own blog.

The type and length of posts they publish

Most posts published in these blogs are about things happening in the lives of celebrities. Mostly recent news, opinion pieces and posts that leave readers guessing and wondering.

They are short and accompanied by one or more photos / video embeds, with the occasional in-depth posts gracing their homepages.

The posts are based on other sources. Like what the writer heard in a TV or radio interview concerning the person they are writing about.

Or something the public figure posted on their social media accounts.

Or something they read on another blog or one of the major newspapers / news sites in Kenya.

Or something another celebrity said about another – whether it is something nice or bad – motivated by on-going beef / rivalry.

Or something inspired by new releases (music, TV shows or movies) they’ve come across.

So, you’ll have to listen to / read these, base your post titles on something intriguing you hear or read, come up with a few paragraphs and publish your post.

Some of these sites interview celebrities then publish such interviews as blog posts – or sometimes use quotes from such interviews (done via email, phone, Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook or in person) when writing new articles.

This is mostly how the writers of these blogs get the topics / gossip to write about.

As someone who wants to start a blog in this space, it is therefore important to know the best sources to find content that will inspire your own articles.

Mostly other blogs, interviews in FM radio stations, breakfast shows in different radio stations, TV shows built around trends and Kenyan music.

And like some of the prolific writers in this niche, know how to quickly pounce on breaking news – and being among the first few blogs to cover a story.

Listen frequently to celeb interviews on radio and TV shows then write and publish posts that resonate well with your readers.

Know what your readers want.

Check the feedback you get via phone calls, email, on Twitter, WhatsApp, text and Facebook comments.

Also be sure to check your blog’s analytics to see what keywords people type in search engines before they land on your blog.

Doing this will fill your head with great ideas for new posts.

The demographics these blogs target

Mostly they target the youth.

The people who want to hear more about their favourite musicians, upcoming tours, shows, collaborations, new endorsements, new releases, challenges various personalities are facing, celeb marriages, celeb relationships, breakups, flings, stories of their favourite artistes’ childhood and life growing up.

Or a celeb’s side of the story whenever there is a claim / allegation / controversy in the public domain that they deny and deem to be a lie spearheaded by persons with ill-intent, projects their favourite celebrities are working on currently…and so on.

Most of the people reading these blogs are in high school, polytechnics, colleges and universities.

Some are young professionals.

Then there are older folks who visit these sites once in a while to see what’s going on in Kenya’s entertainment scene.

Do you want to specialize and write gossip news posts or write blog posts on anything you want?

To create more content that your readers like, you may decide to write on other topics as well; publishing, on your blog, articles on lifestyle, gadget reviews, restaurant / hotel reviews, life in campus, investing and business tips among other topics – some of which are mentioned in the post How to start a county news blog in Kenya.

You may even decide to niche down and cover only what’s going in the gospel scene, write articles on Kenyan rappers only, or even focus your blog on Kenyan actors / actresses and the TV series and films they are cast in.

To make your gossip website popular with your readers are you going to lie and spin tales in your blog posts?

There have been bloggers who have written posts claiming some famous Kenyan was dead when in truth the person they wrote about was alive and well.

Some bloggers do this to court controversy. Hoping that their blog will be noticed – and become widely read.

Just goes to show you the levels some people have sunk for fame and attention.

Some do this because they read somewhere that controversy is good for getting more people to your site, paying attention to your words, what you have to say.

But in their tests, sometimes they end up doing some things that are outrageous in the name of building a brand where readers flock to for their entertainment news.

I don’t know about you, but don’t you think it’s better to just be reasonable when writing and publishing, to tell the truth, to report facts, to get in touch with the people you write about (or other people who serve as credible sources) before publishing any mean-spirited articles?

Other questions to ask yourself before creating your gossip / entertainment blog

  • What do I think of the lives of these people I’m writing about – and what do I think of their rights to privacy – and litigations / law suits that may arise out of me invading their private life and getting all in their affairs and daily activities paparazzi-style?
  • Do I just go ahead and hurt others for profit in the name of building a great gossip site? What’s the point? Is there a way to be involved in the showbiz industry writing a blog that just doesn’t see the people it writes about as a way to up the unique visitors / pageviews / ad clicks / ad revenue numbers?
  • Do I add to my blog and publish adult content like leaked photos of celebs totally nude or almost naked whenever I get my hands on such content? Most people would consider that an opportunity to drive even more traffic and revenue to their blogs, but what about me? Do I want to go down this road?
  • Will I be going to parties, concerts and big events in different Kenyan cities and towns to get entertainment news for my blog readers or not? If yes, why? And how will I conduct myself when out there mingling with others, watching and talking with people I meet… ferreting for stories?

When you ask yourself all these questions, consider the ideas I have shared with you above, read the post Reasons to start a blog, study the already popular gossip / entertainment blogs in Kenya, write a few sample posts, it is time to create your own entertainment blog. You are ready.

Register a domain name for your new entertainment blog, get web hosting and start publishing and promoting articles

Register a short and memorable domain name and get hosting for your blog.

Use WordPress as the content management system to power your blog.

Learn more about WordPress hosting in Kenya.

Also check this post. It will give you a few pointers on what to pay attention to when deciding which web hosting company to work with.

Once your blog is up, publish and share your posts on social networking sites.

Also encourage sharing on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Snapchat, Twitter and WhatsApp by adding sharing buttons at the top and bottom of the articles you publish on your blog.

In Conclusion

It is up to you what type of entertainment site you want to run.

A clean one or one marred with controversies.

It’s up to you whether you want to use your internet access to spin tales, to be out there stabbing people in the stomach with every post you publish.

Or to publish stories that plug into the curious nature of human beings while at the same time edifying them.

Defamation and libel. Cause and effect. Action and reaction. Supply and demand. Choices and consequences. Remember this line at all times.

For the step by step instruction on how to buy web hosting, register a domain and install WordPress script for your blog, read this post.

If you have any questions, experiences, failures, successes or tips you’d like to share, post them in the comments section below.

Google AdSense: Why bloggers in Kenya like using it to make money online with their blogs

Google Adsense, the ad network by Google, is a popular way for bloggers in Kenya and around the world to make money online with their blogs.

It is popular with online media companies and bloggers around the world. It’s no doubt Kenyan bloggers like it as well. As part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series, today we look at ….

Why Kenyan bloggers like using Google AdSense to monetize their blog content

They don’t need much content and web traffic to start monetizing their blogs with Adsense

Once you start your own blog and have some content published and some traffic flowing to your blog, just use your Gmail account to apply for an Adsense account.

If your website meets the requirements set out by Google for publishers, your account will be approved and you will be able to start adding Adsense ad blocks to your site – and making money from your blog depending on how much traffic you get per day and the number of clicks you get.

Also note that once your Adsense account is approved, you can use the ads on other blogs you own as well. Meaning you can monetize multiple blogs with ads from your Adsense account.

How did my Adsense account get approved

This was many years ago. Before I ever had my first self-hosted WordPress blog, I had a Blogspot blog (Blogger.com) – another service by Google for people who want to create free blogs.Google AdSense: Why bloggers in Kenya like using it to make money online with their blogs

I had less than 15 articles on that blog if I remember correctly. In the admin dashboard area, there was this section where I was prompted to apply for Adsense so I could show ads from the ad network on my Blogspot blog.

Soon after, my Adsense account was approved – and I added some ad blocks on the Blogspot block. Later on when I started different self-hosted WordPress blogs over the years (some failed and I never renewed their domain names once they expired) I just got different ad dimensions from my Adsense account and added them to my blogs – inside the content area and the sidebars.

The Adsense ads being displayed on this blog are all from that account. So, the good thing with Adsense is that once your account is approved, and you are running multiple blogs, you can add Adsense ads on one, two or all of your blogs / apps or YouTube channel – without need to be approved every time you plan on setting up a new blog where you plan on using Google Adsense as a monetization method.

Adsense payments are guaranteed so long as you adhere to the ad network’s ToS and have enough traffic

All you need to get paid and receive your cheque every month from Google for you Adsense earnings is running your site in adherence to their terms of service.

Of course you must have enough traffic to make any money. The more traffic your site gets the more people will click your ads – earning you more.

Remember you can’t click your own ads or tell your friends (coerce or give incentive to your site visitors) to click your ads. Doing this is grounds for your Adsense account getting banned.

Kenyan bloggers like Adsense because they know they will get their money as long as they keep publishing awesome content that gets traffic, draws in readers who leave satisfied with the information they find – and most importantly adhere to Adsense policies.

Readers coming to their blogs just have to click on ads for them to get paid

With Adsense every time someone clicks ads on your blog, Google keeps a portion and a percentage goes to you as the publisher whose blog the ads are displayed.

The more valid ad clicks you get on your blog, the more your earnings from Adsense will be. Different niches attract different amounts per click and sites that focus their content to audiences in countries like the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom may earn more per click – depending on the niche one is operating in.

But this doesn’t mean that blogs that publish content for audiences in other countries – like Kenya – can’t earn decent money with Adsense, though it bears repeating that to earn decent amounts with Adsense you need to attract lots of traffic to your blog from search engines and social networks (if you are at the point where you can ramp up the number of people you send to your blog on a daily basis using Facebook advertising and the like).

You only need to reach US$ 100 in your Google AdSense account to get your money sent to you

The minimum amount your AdSense account needs to reach for you to receive your money via Western Union is 100 US dollars.

Most bloggers in Kenya, consistently putting out good content, do that. That is why making money with Adsense is enticing to many bloggers.

Bloggers know that every month they hit the 100 dollar pay out limit Google will be sending them a cheque – in the mail.

How quickly one reaches or even goes beyond the 100-dollar limit is largely influenced by the topic they cover, ad placement, blog design, the source of their traffic, the number of valid clicks, adherence to Adsense ToS and the amount of traffic their blog gets.

You can easily increase how much you earn with Google AdSense by publishing more blog posts

To earn more income with Google Adsense a blogger can publish more articles to their blog, consistently. Doing this results in more traffic – and therefore a likelihood of earning more money per thousand views (revenue per mille – RPM).

All things being equal, the blogger that gets 350,000 pageviews per month is likely to earn more with Adsense compared to one that only gets 50,000 pageviews per month.

So, one way bloggers in Kenya have been able to earn more is to publish more content to their blog. Some blogs put out at least one blog post per day. The really mega blogs in Kenya put out something like 2 to 25 blog posts per day. Granted some are short posts. But they do know how to get people to their sites – and then get those people to spend even more time on their site looking at more and more webpages, increasing the likelihood of their site visitors clicking on more ads.

Publishing more articles also means that one has more content they can promote for free or via paid advertising – which results in more traffic (and, in occasion, virality), more pageviews, more shares on social networks, email and messaging apps like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, WhatsApp, more ad clicks = more income.

Google Adsense has a variety of ads to show on the different niche topics a blogger may choose to write on

Many advertisers use Google Adwords to place ads on search engine results pages – so that people using Google to search for things related to what they are advertising can see their ads – and decide to click them and check out what they are offering.

Some of the advertisers, using Adwords, decide to display their ads on websites that are part of the Adsense networks (content publishers – website, app and blog owners that have been approved by Adsense and allowed to display ads and earn from clicks / RPMs).

There are a lot of advertisers using Adwords – advertisers selling lots of different things. Meaning that whatever topic you write about, there is someone using Adwords to place ads that are related to the content you are publishing.

As a publisher, there will be relevant ads displayed to your readers by Adsense. That’s why bloggers in Kenya publishing content in different niches use Adsense to monetize their sites.

Even if there are no relevant ads suited to the readers in the niche you blog about, Google will try to display ads on your blog that are related to your readers’ interests – using their browsing behaviour as a guide (hint) to show ads that are relevant to them.

So, in most cases, regardless of a niche you operate your blog in, there are always relevant ads to show your readers – and earn you an income.

You can easily tweak your blog design, Adsense ad sizes, types and layouts to increase your income

The reporting feature in Adsense dashboard makes tweaking ads easier. The reporting feature tells you how your ads are performing – and occasionally Adsense offers tips to optimize your ads to increase your earnings.

Bloggers in Kenya like Adsense because there are a variety of ad dimensions (medium rectangle, responsive ads, large rectangle, link units, larger skyscraper among others) to choose from – with the ability to display text ads, rich media or a mix of both.

Bloggers can change the colours of their ads, colours of the font used in their ads – and make the relevant changes that work well with their WordPress theme to ensure more revenue from ads displayed on every webpage on their blog.

You can also exclude ads from certain niches and categories from showing on your blog – if you don’t want your readers to see them.

And I bet many bloggers find this feature handy, because there are some dark ads that one must block in their Adsense account – however much such ads may earn them when curious readers click to see what’s on the other end.

It’s easy to start earning with Google Adsense once your blog gets good traffic

Adding Adsense to a blog is as simple as copying the ad code from your Adsense account and adding it to your blog (for example adding the large skyscraper ad to your sidebar by dragging the Text widget to your blog’s sidebar and pasting the ad code in the Appearance > Text widgets section of your blog).

There are many WordPress Adsense plugins to add Adsense ads to your blog, some with the ability to exclude certain ads from showing on specific posts, post types, pages, categories and tags. These plugins include Ad Inserter (which I use to add Adsense ad code inside post content and float them left or align them to the right, while excluding the ads from displaying on my WooCommerce product pages), Quick Adsense, Google Adsense official plugin among others.

There are also great WordPress Adsense themes – some free and some premium – that makes it easy to add Adsense ads to your blog and blend them well with the content you publish. Some of these themes have a Theme Settings / Options / Customize section to quickly add the Adsense ads in the top of the fold area, in the content area and sidebar section of your website.

These themes include but are not limited to Eleven40 Pro theme (works with the Genesis Theme Framework), Newspaper magazine theme by Mythemeshop and SuperAds by ThemeCountry.

The variety and ease that comes with these plugins and themes makes using Adsense even more enticing for different bloggers – the ones with low traffic and the ones whose blogs receive lots of traffic on a daily basis.

With AdSense you can add up to 3 ads to your blog template [NOTE: now you can add more than 3 Google AdSense ads in a web page]

This, as many bloggers have found, gives readers more chances to see and click on your ads. One can easily add different Adsense ads – one at the top of the post, another in the middle / end of the post and one more in their blog’s sidebar area.

For the Kenyan bloggers who have put a priority in making money with ads (Adsense in this case) and not other online money making methods like affiliate marketing, selling of products and services, collecting leads / building email list, selling ebooks, selling online courses, selling coaching or consulting, selling apps / software, selling physical products, flipping blogs / websites / houses / cars / online businesses, this works well for them – three ads spread out in different sections of their sites to increase clicks and total earnings.

Google Adsense ads can be displayed on tablets, smartphones, desktop computers including laptops and netbooks

Adsense ads display well on the variety of devices people use to access the internet – desktop PCs, tablets, laptops, smart TVs even some feature phones.

Bloggers who use Adsense therefore can increase the amount of money they make across different types of electronic devices people use to access their blogs.

Whether the same readers check one’s blog with the various gadgets they own, they still are presented with a chance to see ads relevant to them – which some click on earning the blog owner more from the content they publish.

Some bloggers in Kenya use Google Adsense in conjunction with other blog monetization methods and Google is OK with that

…as long as blog owners going this route stick to Adsense policies, they are free to bring other monetization methods into the mix.

Publishers can use affiliate marketing to increase the amount of money they make from their blogs.

They can use ads from alternative ad networks (like Outbrain, RevContent, PropellerAds, BuySellAds, Media.net, Chitika and others) to supplement the income they get from Adsense.

Google has no qualms with that as long as you stick to their terms of service and give readers a good experience every time they visit your site. So, your site shouldn’t just be loaded with ads. It should have great content, load fast and give readers what they want.

You can use Adsense and also sell your own products by linking to them in whatever online marketplace you are selling them. Or sell your products right from your blog using WordPress ecommerce plugins like Easy Digital Downloads plugin or WooCommerce.

You can sell your own services – and get paid to your Safaricom M-PESA mobile money wallet, bank account, Skrill or PayPal. For example, any freelance service you decide to offer online will earn you some money, on top of your Adsense income.

You might even be surprised that you earn more from the work you put in as an online freelancer. Or even earn more from the sales of your own products or products and services you promote as an affiliate.

Bloggers in Kenya, love this, because it gives them room to test different blog monetization methods, to see the ones they like, the ones that work for them, their readers – and fits in well with their short and long term plan for their blog.

More and more companies and businesses in Kenya are using Google Adwords (either through digital marketing agencies or their marketing arms) to advertise their products and services online

Meaning that Kenyan bloggers that publish content for Kenyans (inside the country and in the diaspora) and those interested in Kenya (citizens of other countries) now have more and more ads by local brands Kenyans are familiar with showing on their blogs – increasing the likelihood of readers clicking the ads, which results in more earnings.

In Conclusion

Bloggers like Adsense because of all the reasons mentioned above – among many other reasons. Once you publish content and promote it, most people see their ad earnings as passive income. Which they like.

Some bloggers make a full time income from Adsense. Others make hundreds of dollars a month and growing, soon to reach their first ever one thousand dollar payout.

With all the advantages it should also be noted that there are some bloggers who don’t like Adsense as a monetization method. These are bloggers who say the earnings from Adsense are too little.

That Adsense requires a lot of traffic to make any decent amounts of money monthly. And that Google can ban one’s account on a whim, with all the accrued but not yet cashed out earnings gone just like that.

And they are right.

Different strokes for different people.

There are bloggers who prefer making money online via affiliate marketing.

Some like selling their own online courses, seminars and ebooks.

Others like making money doing freelance jobs – work they prospect for on sites like Upwork, Textbroker, Fiverr, iWriter among other sites – or those they get from direct clients that land on their blogs.

So, if you want to use Adsense on your site, weigh your options, know the reason why you are starting your blog, test the different monetization methods – and if you settle on Adsense work on your site to increase your income.

Also realize that you can use these other monetization methods in conjunction with Adsense.

To you: Have any questions, tips, stories or relevant info you’d like to share with me and other readers concerning Adsense and the other blog monetization methods mentioned in this post? Share them in the comments section below.

How to start a county news blog in Kenya

As part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series, we’ll look at how to start a county news blog in this post today.

Kenya has 47 counties – devolved governments separate from the national government – with a lot of activities in each of them.

Meaning you can start a blog targeting any of the counties – and find lots of news stories to share with the residents of the county you choose to focus on.

The counties include Lamu, Nairobi, Kisumu, Garissa, Nyandarua, Samburu, Nyamira, Migori, Kirinyaga, Kisii, Mombasa, Uasin Gishu, Meru, Turkana, Homa Bay, Kwale, Kilifi, Kajiado, Tana River, Nyeri, Taita-Taveta, Makueni, West Pokot, Kakamega, Mandera, Marsabit, Isiolo, Busia, Kitui, Murang’a, Trans-Nzoia, Nandi, Laikipia, Nakuru, Narok, Kericho, Embu, Bomet, Vihiga, Bungoma, Elgeyo-Marakwet, Siaya, Kiambu, Machakos, Wajir, Tharaka-Nithi and Baringo.

So, here are some things to consider if you want to start a county blog.

Do you want to start a blog covering news and commentaries from all counties in Kenya or just one?

For anyone who wants to take on this venture, it is important to be sure about the locations (counties) you want to write about on your blog.

There is a lot happening every day in each and every country. Meaning that the more counties you cover, the more labour (and other resources) you’ll need for original reporting, reviews, news commentaries, profiles of leaders and more.

You can start your blog covering events taking place in the county you currently reside in.

As you get in the flow publishing more posts and your blog getting noticed, you can choose to start casting your eyes farther. To also publish articles on events taking place in neighbouring counties.

If you don’t want to mix things, you can register a different domain name and have another blog dedicated to the events taking place in any other county you decide to cover.

Be realistic about how much energy you’ll need daily to produce enough articles covering the locations you set your eyes on.

Don’t take too much hay on your fork.

The best thing you can do is just to blog about one county at the beginning. Just like business ideas, if you have more than one, start with a single idea.

Start with one county. Or even a single location in your county.

Over many months you’ll be able to figure out if expanding and casting your nets wider is the best move.

What can you learn from other popular websites and blogs targeting counties in Kenya?

There are some county blogs that pay for content, for example Kenya Shillings 100 to 500 for an article with a minimum word count of 200 words.

This way they can afford to have a lean staff and still have lots of content published on their site for their readers every week.

These sites usually solicit content from their readers and pay for original reporting, news commentaries and opinion pieces.

Then there are sites that allow others to write for them in exchange for exposure. No money exchanges hands in these cases. But still they land some great content from their readers. Call it user generated content or citizen journalism, but some websites get great content from their readers.

Even online versions of the big daily newspapers in Kenya have sections on their websites where users can submit their own content for consideration and eventual publication (as long as the submitted content meets the criteria and editorial standards set up by these sites).

Then there are some county blogs with one or two writers. Most if these blogs just publish content on one or two counties. This is likely the path you’ll take as you start your own site.

It is a smart move. Starting with one county – and growing slowly over months and years – funnelling traffic back to your blog using Facebook advertising and growing organic traffic from search engines with every new article you publish on your blog.

It will take time – and a lot of content promotion – to grow your county news blog. Most of these sites take time to become popular – and widely read.

You therefore have to, like the owners of these sites, take a long term view when you start your own news site. If you are not in it for the long haul, you’ll be just wasting your time.

If you want things to move quickly, to become popular quickly, to get tens or hundreds of unique visitors (and millions of pageviews per month) per day without a budget (i.e. money to spend on ads online and offline), spare yourself the headache and rethink your plan or move to something else.

There are after all a lot of online ventures you can start and profit from.

At the onset it’s good to focus your blog and news on one county.

Apart from the news, commentaries and other opinion pieces you publish, you can also like some of these blogs do, publish articles on lifestyle, sports, relationships and tips to help your readers develop themselves into better persons.

You can also publish reviews of products and services – to bring in more revenue and profits to run your operations – instead of entirely depending on money from ad networks like Google Adsense and Media.net.

Why start a county blog?

People living in the various counties need resources where they can learn more about what’s happening in their counties.

The mainstream news sites in Kenya put more emphasis in covering everything happening in Kenya worthy of their attention. Which means that sometimes they don’t spend more resources on one particular place. Meaning that there is a lot happening in these places that don’t get featured on these mainstream sites.

You can see the truth in this if you watch vernacular TV stations in Kenya (or listen to vernacular FM radio stations).

Your county blog can go deeper. Write more about what’s happening in your county. Put more resources in place to get original reporting on things that might not otherwise even be considered newsworthy by the major newspapers and news sites.

As counties grow, more and more people (residents and people from other counties) will be interested in what’s happening in the town, cities and villages in your county.

And your county blog will help them learn more (about your county) and make better decisions. Decisions to invest in your county. To move to your county. To buy property in your county. To help development projects in your county. To trade with farmers and other business owners in your county.

Your site can become a great resource – where people come to learn – from you, from people you feature in your stories and from each other – in the comments section.

Your site can be a place where people come to share their ideas, knowledge, opinions and feedback. Which is a great way to bring people together, to promote culture, champion family values, Kenya’s Vision 2030 and more.

Your site can facilitate trade between people living in and outside your county. How? You can set a marketplace, an online shop or classifieds section on your site where people can sell and buy items – from common fast moving consumer goods, property like land, vehicles, farm produce, machinery, electronics, services and more.

What can you cover in the blog posts you publish apart from the news stories you feature on your site?

  • Interviews. There are many leaders and professionals from the county you are hailing from. Most of them have great things to share – and are willing to accept interview requests. Your work is to approach them. To learn more about them. To send them your questions and get back detailed responses to publish on your blog.
  • County assembly news. You can interview your governor, Members of County Assemblies and publish articles based on whatever is brewing in your county. Debunk controversies. Publish posts on new legislation. Publish posts on battles between MCAs and other officials working in your county – and even stories on a few things the public doesn’t understand well.
  • Business tips. You can get the tips by interviewing and writing profiles of business owners and entrepreneurs from your county. These tips are great for owners of small businesses, youths who want to venture in agribusiness or select courses at university that they can use to help the residents of your county – before and after graduation.
  • Contributions from local residents. Invite people to write articles for you and publish them on your site. Interview some on current events and publish their views on your blog either as several answers from different people (to one question) in one blog post or series of posts. Interview the doctors, the nurses, the court clerks, auditors, police officers, hawkers, hoteliers, teachers, professors, drivers, motorbike riders, musicians, priests, writers, vendors in your county…even your neighbours.
  • Write about tourism spots in your county and what makes them delightful. Writing in-depth reviews of these places is a good way to start. You can also do joint ventures with hotels and businesses in these places and get coupon codes / discounts for your readers so they can visit these places without breaking the bank. The owners of the hotels / businesses will appreciate the publicity and your blog visitors will appreciate you going an extra mile to make it possible for them to visit these spots at a discount.
  • Write about projects in the county initiated by the county government, local and foreign investors, charities, NGOs and foundations. Write about the advantages and disadvantages of such projects. Whether the people undertaking them are following the law. Also mention how they impact the county residents and how the residents can take advantage of such projects.
  • Write posts that touch on the accountability of county leaders. Show your fellow residents how the money allocated to your county government from the treasury is being used.

There is a lot to write about.

Consistency is the key here.

You’ll have more ideas every day for new posts.

Keep writing and publish at least 2 to 3 articles a day – or even more posts if you intend to write more short articles than you do long-form content.

Apart from the ideas above, also make sure to check the post How to start a news blog in Kenya for more ideas on things you can cover on your blog.

Have a mixture of news articles and evergreen content that accrue in value.

Register a domain for your blog, get web hosting and start blogging

When ready, it is time to come up with a name for your county news blog, register a .co.ke or .com domain, get web hosting for your WordPress blog and start publishing new articles.

I’ve written many posts on how to do this before, so I’m not going to repeat the same here. Check this article on domain registration (extensions and costs involved), this article on web hosting costs and finally this article on how Niabusiness.com can help you with the process of domain registration and web hosting.

If you have any question you’d like to ask me, share it in the comments section below.

How writers and authors can start blogs, reach more readers and sell more books in Kenya

Writers in Kenya are some of the people with great ideas to share with their fellow citizens – given the fact that they are already familiar with the process of putting ideas down on paper and sharing them with others – to inspire, educate, provoke thought, teach, edify or rebuke.

Most Kenyan authors, the well-known ones, have books with their name on the covers.

Some of them are published by the mainstream book publishers in the country.

Others have gone the self-publishing route, taking care of the cost of formatting their books, hiring an editor and proof-reader, buying ISBN codes, finding a book printer, marketing and selling their own books on the internet and offline.

Some have also embraced digital distribution of their books by publishing ebooks that they sell on other third party websites including their own blogs.

In this part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series, we look at how writers in Kenya can embrace the internet, increase their online presence via their own blogs and earn a living from their works – making sales of their books, ebooks, consulting and speaking via their own sites.

First, let’s deal with some of the questions Kenyan writers ask when it comes to blogging.

Should I just focus only on writing my books and get a publishing contract with the big local book publishers

Some authors see blogging as a distraction from writing their first, second or even fiftieth book. And some regard self-publishing of books with the same mindset.

As such it’s easy to focus on just writing a book and then working hard to secure a contract with one of the big book publishers in Kenya.

It’s been a dream of many writers to get a deal with the book publishers. To have a deal with them. To have them around helping in distributing copies of their books. To have them deal with buyers and collecting money for them.

And this method has worked for some authors so well, even with the low royalties most book publishers give writers in Kenya and around the world.

One truth most people don’t want to hear is the fact that getting a deal with these big publishers at times don’t turn out as expected.

There are writers with the backing of some of these big publishing companies in Kenya who are unhappy with the royalties they get.

Their books don’t sell much.

And when it comes to sales, some publishers don’t push some titles hard.

Selling rights to your works also becomes a problem when you want to do things that deviate from what you agreed on with your publisher.

Getting a deal with the big publishers is good – especially if your novel or novella or short story is selected to be used as a set text in secondary schools / colleges or universities…or you are commissioned to write a revision text book.

So, as much as just writing and waiting to clinch a deal with the big publishers is enticing, you should, as a writer with access to the internet, be open to other avenues and ideas that can help you get your work in more hands.

In this post for example, I’m proposing starting and using your own blog to promote your work, especially if you publish more non-fiction than fiction works.

Meaning you should be open to the idea of writing articles, publishing them on your blog, promoting them and getting email subscribers (from the readers that come to your blog from search engines, messaging apps and social networking websites) that you can then sell printed and digital copies of your book, consulting / coaching, audio files, videos, online courses among other things.

If this is something that speaks to you, I highly recommend you read the article Reasons to start a blog.

You will find lots of ideas that you can put into great use when creating your own blog on WordPress or any other platform you choose to power your site.

Where will I get the time to both write books and publish articles in the blog I start

If you already know the advantages of blogging, you will find the time to blog.

At the beginning you may need to put in a lot of time by the way because most of the time will be spent on creating content for your blog and promoting the content.

You can do this with just one to two hours a day Monday to Friday – and scale up (or down) the hours you spend working on your blog as times goes by.

Check this interview to learn how you can just publish 3 to 4 articles a week on your chosen blog niche to get the momentum going.

You can also find the time to both write your books and blog posts by rising early in the morning, watching less TV or simply squeezing a few minutes here and there throughout the day to write and spruce up your posts before you publish them on your blog.

Come up with the titles for you articles, outline them and then write. This makes writing articles easier for many writers. It could also work well for you.

Just be careful, organized and ensure that as you embrace blogging you will do your best not to let your blog stop you from writing and publishing your books. Also set deadlines for the articles and books you are working on.

Learn how setting deadlines can help you achieve your writing goals much faster.

If I write many blog posts and publish them on my blog, where will I get more great ideas for my books

Blogging is great and many times you will be compelled to give away your best content for free.

The more posts you’ll write and publish the more it will seem like you are giving away everything for free.

And then wonder if your blog is just depleting your ideas bank – a euphemism for thinking that the more content your blog gets the fewer the number of great books you publish will get.

So, on the surface it looks like having a blog can help you promote your books. But on the flip-side it looks like your blog, and all the content in it, is a death sentence of sorts for future titles you hope to release.

But don’t worry.

Many writers have pulled this off. They have blogged and still continued to release great books.

Here’s the thing. The ideas bank when nurtured well never runs out of great ideas. There will be plenty of ideas to go around. Some for your blog and some for your books.

Besides blogs just work as a net…to draw in readers and give them whatever they want (a solution to their problem, instructions, expert tips, laughter, stories). Your posts work as teasers that get your blog visitors engaged with your work more.

Some of these readers will be satisfied just reading your posts – and leave – while some of them will go an extra step and buy your books.

The ones that just read your blog posts also serve you well even if they never buy your books.

They still read and leave feedback – which is essential to you as a writer. Some of them will share your articles online with their friends and family – drawing in more eyeballs and potential readers your way.

So, both the blog and books you publish work to draw people to you – to your work – regardless of whether they pay for a copy of your novel, memoir, collection of short stories / poems or just read your free content.

But the level of engagement your blog gets once someone lands on your site goes a long way in helping both you the author and your readers.

In fact, the more blog posts you write the more ideas you’ll come up with for future book releases.

These ideas will come from the feedback you get from readers, content you come across when doing your research or the occasional great idea that strikes when you are reading your own material.

How can a blog help me in my career as a writer / author in Kenya

Some of the advantages, I’ve already mentioned in the previous section above and also in this article.

A blog, if you decide to write consistently, will help you improve the quality of your writing.

The more writing you put out of your head / heart the more you’ll find that you come up with a handful of gems.

Besides this, your typing speed will improve.

Also you’ll learn how to engage more with readers online & offline on your blog, social networks and messaging apps.

Your knowledge of sales will get better and you won’t be afraid to ask for the sale whenever appropriate.

Your blog will also help you seek out fellow writers and network with them.

With your growing network, you’ll be able to share ideas, critique each other’s work or promote each other’s work.

Your blog will also be a place where you can share your story, your journey, your triumphs and struggles all in one place accessible with any device in the possession of anyone with internet access – some who will become potential readers over months and years of you consistently working on both your blog, books and ebooks.

You can even use advertising (for example Facebook ads and Google Adwords) to drive Kenyans, in masses, to your dedicated landing pages on your blog where you can ask for their email addresses and phone number so you can send them periodic updates – and once in a while send them to the shopping cart section of your blog to purchase your books or online courses and pay via Safaricom M-PESA, Airtel Money, Orange Money, Equitel, VISA, MasterCard or American Express credit and debit cards.

You can also, on your WordPress powered blog, chat live with the people who visit your blog, get to know them and build stronger writer-reader relationships.

Can I use a combination of blogging and self-publishing to build a successful career without help from traditional publishers

It’s up to you.

Some writers in Kenya have discovered they do a better job selling their own books than the publishers ever do, however tiring this may be.

Whether you want to be a part of this group of authors who have decided to self-publish books (in print and digital format) is a personal choice.

You’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of going this route then decide if self-publishing is for you or not.

If you decide to self-publish, use blogging to produce and publish articles on your chosen niche topic.

Then monetize the content by creating and selling print or digital ebooks on your blog (and Kenya’s eKitabu.com, Jumia.co.ke and Amazon Kindle) that offer much needed solutions to the people that make up the niche you are targeting as a writer with your blog content.

You can also work with a traditional publisher but self-publish some of your works and use your blog to promote them all. After all, most publishers, don’t publish that many titles every year.

Besides rejection slips, sometimes you have to wait for months before your accepted manuscript / typescript gets published and released to the market. Your decision, though, shouldn’t be based on these – or even piracy.

Know what works for you, for your situation, then take the necessary steps to spread word about your books.

To start your blog, choose a topic you want to blog about and determine how frequently you want to blog

Blogs take time to grow, especially if you’ll be relying more on organic search traffic and not advertising to get people to your blog.

So, it’s wise to have a plan and a way to implement it.

Settle on a niche.

Determine how many times a week you want to publish new articles on your blog.

Come up with a list of possible blog titles and get to work writing in-depth posts for your readers.

Register a domain name, get web hosting, install WordPress and start publishing content on your blog

There are many web hosting companies in Kenya (that double up as domain registrars) where you can register a .com or .co.ke domain name for your blog for a yearly fee and get a web hosting plan (where your site’s files will be stored).

If you need help with any of these, learn how Niabusiness.com can help you register a domain name, get web hosting, install WordPress for you and have your blog ready for the content you write and the readers that will be coming to read it.

Once your new blog is up and running, it’s now just a matter of writing, publishing content to it and promoting the content to get more people to notice what you have to offer.

You can then entice these people with freebies and send them regular updates (so that they keep coming back to your blog to check your recent articles and books) once they join your email list.

If you are a writer in Kenya and want to start a blog to promote your work, I encourage you to do so.

But only if you are willing to put in the work to create great content consistently for your blog. Content that will keep accruing in value over time.

If you won’t be putting consistent content on your blog and promoting the content for at least 8 months, I highly discourage you from starting a blog. It will just drain your energy and leave you frustrated. And you really don’t want to be a frustrated writer.

If you are ready to put in the work, then your blog can be another platform (one you own) where you share your ideas, promote your work and meet awesome people.

Again, take some time to read the article: Reasons to start a blog.

If you have any questions, stories, experiences, successes, or tips you’d like to share with me and other writers, do so in the comments section below.

If you have questions on how you can start your own blog to promote your books and ebooks use the comments section to ask.

8 types of popular blogs in Kenya: general and niche focused

Many bloggers in Kenya have come up with different types of blogs in various niches in recent years – managing to build popular blogs catered to different segments of the Kenyan population.

As part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series, today we look at the categories most of the popular blogs in Kenya fall under.

Popular blogs in Kenya: News sites

These blogs mostly feature commentaries on Kenyan politics – with posts dedicated to recent news, breaking news, news on developments in the 47 counties, news touching on cabinet secretaries, governors, senators, MPs, MCAs, senate, the judiciary, national assembly, private sector, public sector and general news items touching on the top concerns of Kenyans – like health, corruption, Kenya’s relations with other countries, security within and outside Kenya, the economy, tribalism and a few trending issues that have Kenyans talking on social media.

Some of the news sites can be categorized as general news site covering many topics in one single blog while some are more niche publishing posts on a few select topics.

Some even lean to opposition parties like CORD / NASA while some, pro-government news sites, lean more towards the Jubilee Party.

Featured in some of these sites are also news happening in neighbouring countries like Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and even countries like South Sudan, Burundi, United Kingdom and the United States.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Sports blogs

These blogs publish articles covering games in Kenya and other countries. There are many blogs dedicated to Kenyan football teams, players and managers.

Some of the blogs also publish posts on English Premier League, Champions League, Bundesliga, La Liga and more football news from other leagues around the world.

Also shared on these sites are stories, tips and news related to sports betting in Kenya.

Like the popular news websites in Kenya (online versions of Nation newspaper, Standard newspaper, The Star newspaper, The People Daily and others) some of the sports blogs in the country also publish news stories on athletics, motor sports, basketball, baseball, golf, hockey and other sports.

Some of these blogs also publish articles sharing information on what is going on in the lives of top players, managers and club owners.

Occasionally, they publish profiles of athletes and share quotes from top players around the world.

There are also lots of opinion posts on what certain players, managers, teams and clubs can do to improve their odds at winning trophies and giving the best they’ve got to their teams and fans around the globe.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Personal blogs

Many Kenyans who have started their own blogs have opted to go the route of personal blogging.

Blogs like these publish posts on whatever it is the owner wants to share with their readers at the moment.

There is a lot of strong opinions shared on such blogs.

Sometimes there are commentaries on things happening in Kenya and around the world.

Some posts touch on the lifestyle of Kenyans.

Others also share tips on various products and services Kenyans use. Detailed how-to posts and reviews Kenyans can use to help them better exercise their consumer rights are published by some bloggers – helping fellow citizens make the right buying decisions whenever they are out there shopping online, in shops, chemists, showrooms, malls or supermarkets.

Some of these blogs also publish articles inspired by a blogger’s own life, successes, failures, struggles and current projects they are working on.

Most of these blogs cover a lot of topics that appeal to different people – all under one domain name. The variety and choice to be had with such blogs makes them appealing to more Kenyans starting their own blogs.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Fashion blogs

Popular with women, fashion blogs in Kenya, share tips to help Kenyan ladies look their best.

There are many of them – with make-up tips, with latest news on fashion trends, with how to posts, with reviews of various items of clothing (shoes, hand bags, dresses, skirts, tops, casual wear, official wear, hair products, nail products) and most important of all lots of photos of beautiful and pretty young ladies showing other Kenyan ladies how to dress their best.

Such blogs also share the price of the various items they review and where to buy them online or offline.

Some promote African-inspired fashion as well. Some bloggers behind these blogs also come up with their own designs (some inspired by the culture of the different tribes in Kenya) which they turn into clothes they sell online on their blogs.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Food blogs

Food and cooking blogs in Kenya mostly share recipes for Kenyan dishes and cuisines from other countries and cultures.

Most posts are dedicated to sharing tips on how to prepare different types of dishes. There is a lot of these types of posts to suit meals and different occasions one may have in mind.

There are tips on how to prepare breakfast, lunch or supper – or even prepare food for picnics.

Some bloggers behind these blogs prepare the dishes themselves, share how they prepared them – and even accompany their instructions with great looking photos and videos to ensure whoever is reading their blog or watching their embedded videos makes great dishes for themselves, friends or family.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Entertainment blogs

They are many here in Kenya. And most entertainment blogs cover a lot of topics. From recent news concerning Kenyan celebrities, the latest music releases in Kenya in various genres, the latest shows, opinions and commentaries, lifestyle tips, some celeb gossip, news on Kenyan actors and actresses, labels, managers and more.

Posts in most of these blogs usually consist of some photos accompanied with short text.

Occasionally they include videos or strong opinions that don’t sit well with all their readers. But then some like to court a little controversy – to get read more and increase sharing of their content by their readers on social networking sites and messaging apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Business and freelancing blogs

These blogs target business owners and freelancers in Kenya.

With the unemployment rates in Kenya on the high, these blogs have sprouted to help Kenyans start and grow their own business.

They share tips to help Kenyans get started as entrepreneurs.

Sharing lots of tips to help them run profitable businesses online or offline.

Most of these blogs cover everything business and freelancing.

Some of them have niched down a bit and only cover freelancing topics – some even going deeper to focus only in any one of the following areas: virtual assistants and business outsourcing, freelance writing, transcription services.

Some only promote agriculture among the young and old in Kenya by focus mainly on topics to do with agribusiness.

They publish tutorial-type of posts, success stories of people who decided to do agribusiness, posts on which breeds to buy, where, how to take care of plants & animals… and where to find market for one’s livestock.

Some only share tips for those who want to go into the matatu business and become part of the ever growing public transportation sector in Kenya.

From these blogs, Kenyans get lots of tips to help them grow their small and medium enterprises (SMEs) by bootstrapping their operations, getting loans they use wisely to grow their business or by bringing local and foreign investors on-board to expand their operations and capture more market share in and outside Kenya.

Some of these blogs also share, with business owners, tips on accounting, payroll, banking, insurance, nurturing leads and KRA taxation matters.

The freelancing blogs in Kenya also offer a path to those who want to make money online in Kenya, money that they can then use as capital to start their own limited liability companies here in Kenya.

A lot of these sites also share motivational and inspirational stories for the aspiring entrepreneurs ready to put in the hard work to build great businesses that solve problems for Kenyans and citizens from other countries.

Popular blogs in Kenya: Technology blogs

There are many popular blogs in Kenya in the tech niche.

Mostly published on these sites are articles on the technology sector, news on start-ups here in Kenya and beyond our borders, app reviews, profiles of investors, entrepreneurs and various leaders in the IT and tech space, gadget reviews, tutorials for different software and hardware (smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktop PCs, smart home gadgets, smartwatches, accessories for the various devices and more).

Also published on these sites are opinions touching on developments in the telco and tech space in and outside Kenya and reviews that share the prices of items reviewed and how to get them online or offline.

In conclusion

Most blogs getting lots of unique visitors and pageviews every day fall in the categories listed above.

That doesn’t mean that there aren’t well-liked and widely-read local blogs that don’t fall in the above categories.

There are some great blogs on relationships, love, weddings and marriage, health, motoring, photography, literature (poetry, short stories, writing and publishing – of fiction and non-fiction), travel, lifestyle and Christianity.

Some blogs cover city or town specific content with reviews of establishments in the towns and profiles of leaders living in the specific towns or cities targeted by such blogs.

I have seen some blogs that only write about one of these places: Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nyeri, Thika and Kisii. I bet there are more of this type of blog, besides the county-type blogs.

Most of the blogs in Kenya also run on WordPress (the self-hosted version) though there are some blogs that are powered by the free WordPress.com and Blogspot (Blogger.com) by Google.

To you now. The popular blogs by Kenyan bloggers you visit a lot do they fall in any of the above categories? Let me know by leaving a comment below.

Also do share your thoughts, in the comments section, on why some blogs in Kenya are popular – whether they fall in any of the categories above or not.

WordPress web hosting in Kenya for you

If you want to start a website or blog in Kenya, and are reading this article, you are now at the point where you are looking to go one step further with your plans to setup your site.

Probably you’ve looked at domain registration costs and web hosting plans offered by various hosting companies in Kenya.

You are also wondering which CMS – Content Management System – you should use to power your site – or if using WordPress as a CMS is a better option for your soon to be launched website – or an existing site you want to make changes to.

Meaning you have a lot of questions – considering there are many hosting companies that make it easy for their clients to install WordPress on their domains, subdomains or subfolders – usually with auto script installers like Softaculous, Quick Install or Fantastico Deluxe.

Should you use WordPress to start your website / blog in Kenya

Yes. WordPress is simple, powerful and extendable – and widely used by persons running small, medium and big websites – some getting a couple dozen visitors a day while others getting hundreds of thousands to millions of visitors per day.

WordPress – the self-hosted version – offers a lot of functionality for individuals, businesses, schools, churches, writers, bloggers, authors and churches that want to start their own websites – with static home pages or blogs – where recent articles posted on the site can be shown organized in a chronological order mostly in the home page but sometimes also in  a dedicated page in a website with a title like ‘Blog’ that is displayed in the main navigation of the website for easy access by visitors.

WordPress, which is free by the way and only requires you to register a domain name and pay for hosting package – where your site’s files are stored, works well with hosting companies that have Linux servers, support PHP and MySQL databases – which most do.

Meaning getting started with it is easy.

More and more people are using it.

Compared to other content management systems like Joomla and Drupal it’s getting widely adopted. And if you are unhappy with a hosting company you are using, you can easily move your WordPress powered site to another hosting company.

WordPress is easy to install and setup.

You can also add more functionality to your site using any number of free and premium plugins and themes that are available for quick install.

It is easy to create pages and posts on WordPress. You can customize your site’s design, add images, add audio files, embed videos and do a lot more.

Also if you are busy with other things and don’t want to spend a lot of time working on your site, you can just create content, upload it to your site and schedule it to publish on a date and time you specify.

As a business owner, you can also add online shopping functionality to your site for example using WooCommerce, enable the use of testimonials, sell digital and physical products on your site, add tables of content, get feedback from your readers / customers and even make your site as good looking as you want.

What do the best WordPress web hosting companies in Kenya offer

Most hosting companies offer different hosting packages suited to the needs of various site owners depending on the number of visitors their sites get every day / month.

Apart from this they provide a secure environment for storing your site’s files – in servers that enable good functioning of the WordPress script that powers your website / blog.

They also offer support and guidance from the initial stage when you set out to build your site – and all along as your site grows.

They will help sort site errors, send you email updates with recent tips to ensure your site is secure from hackers, help you manage various aspects of your site via your cPanel admin area and also offer tips to grow your site and draw more of the right people to it from social networks, offline and search engines.

Most hosts in Kenya are also reachable via their website (through support tickets and contact us pages), phone numbers, live chat and email addresses.

Meaning they are fine with a little hand holding whenever there is something you need to change or add to your site.

They also are able to advice on various things concerning WordPress: like plugins, themes and a few coding tweaks you may need.

What to look for when choosing a WordPress host in Kenya

Choose a hosting company or business that understands what it is you want to achieve with your site.

Choose a host that will offer the support you need to ensure your site is available on the internet, functioning as you intended.

Of course a hosting company, even the best ones, won’t do everything for you. You also have to play your part.

There are some mundane tasks – like ensuring your plugins and themes are up to date – that most companies won’t and don’t do – given the huge number of clients they have.

Of course these are tasks that require a click here a click there and they are done.

Same applies to the content published on your site. If you want more quality pages and article published to your new blog or website to increase your search engine rankings, organic traffic and leads, you have to create it yourself or with your staff or business partner or simply hire a freelance writer to create the content for you.

Read this article: 7 things to consider before paying your money to any of the best web hosting companies in Kenya.

The cost of WordPress web hosting in Kenya

The cost depends on the domain name extension you choose (learn more here), the hosting package you pay for and whether you factor in other costs like premium themes and plugins you buy, a content writer you hire, advertising you pay to promote your website (using Google Adwords or Facebook ads, for example) or a website designer you commission to design your website or blog.

Most people are good to go with just registering a domain name, paying for web hosting, installing WordPress (WP), publishing content on the site and promoting their site.

The cost to register a .com or .co.ke domain is 1,000 Kenyan Shillings or less. The cost for most starter hosting ranges from 1,000 Kenyan Shillings to even 15,000 Kenyan Shillings a year depending on whom you are hosting with.

Some cheapest web hosting plans in Kenya go for as little as Kenya Shillings 600 a year.

These cheaper plans (suited for beginner sites with little traffic) often have fewer resources allocated to them; which means that the more your site traffic grows the more you’ll have no option but to upgrade to bigger hosting plan that offer more disk quota and bandwidth. Which cost more.

It should be noted though that there is more that goes into building a site. The cost is not only in terms of money.

Websites and blogs need time to grow. So, you should look at that as well. Check these hosting questions and answers to learn more. They’ll help you weigh if you are ready to commit to starting and growing your website or blog.

Why host your WordPress blog / website with Niabusiness.com Hosting Kenya

As explained in this article, Niabusiness.com helps individuals and small businesses start WordPress sites.

Niabusiness.com helps with domain registration, web hosting, WordPress installation, theme and plugin installation and setup among other things (listed here, here and here) to help you quickly get started and have your site available on the internet ready for readers, leads and customers.

The WordPress questions and problems you may have, Niabusiness Hosting helps you solve. This ensures that you have more time on your hands to focus on your business or other activities. You get support managing your site since Niabusiness.com is well versed in WordPress sites.

With your free time you can create more quality content to be published on your site. You won’t have to learn everything WordPress when you are stuck – because Niabusiness.com will be there. Meaning fewer distractions from your work and other pursuits outside work.

Niabusiness.com installs WordPress and sets up everything for you. Niabusiness.com, when launching your blog or website, even adds the content you have – text and images and creates social media profiles, verifies your site with search engines and creates emails with your domain name in them e.g. yourname@yourdomain.com. Learn more here.

Your next step in building your website

If you’ve checked some of the articles linked to above, especially this one, this and this last one, get in touch with Niabusiness.com via the contact form here to get your WordPress website / blog started.

For any questions, use the comments section below to ask.

An interview with Kenya’s Harriet Ocharo of SavvyKenya.com on starting a blog, getting more traffic and making money blogging

Today we have the Kenyan blogger Harriet Ocharo of SavvyKenya.com. I am glad she took the time to answer a few questions I sent her – her answers making this interview possible.An interview with Kenya's Harriet Ocharo of SavvyKenya.com on starting a blog, getting more traffic and making money blogging

She’s been blogging in Kenya for a long time and has gathered a lot of experience along the way. What she does below is share them with you – her dos and don’ts, her opinions, tips and observations.

So, if you are thinking of starting a blog in Kenya soon or simply want to hear from someone who’s been blogging for a long time (for encouragement) read on.

Find tips to help you build a great blog, one that you work hard to  improve, never letting it wither away like the millions of blogs started every day that end up being abandoned by their owners a few months down the road.

1. Why did you get into blogging and decided to start your own blog?

When I started blogging, it was as a hobby because I liked writing.

Over time, as the number of readers grew, I decided to focus and write more about what people wanted to read; rather than the stories in my life, which is what my earlier blog was all about.

2. How long have you been blogging, on what topics – why? (share your story)

I’ve been blogging for about 7 years. My first blog was called “The Diary of a Mad Teenager” and was a little immature.

My next blog was “The Diary of a Kenyan Campus Girl” in which I detailed campus experiences that anyone who has been to university could relate to.

But then I finished campus and that was when I started writing Savvykenya.com, which tends to focus on mobile technology, but I also do other topics such as book reviews, and life in Nairobi in general.

3. How are things going so far? Have you been able to achieve the goals you set out when you first started?

I had no specific goals when I started, of course, because it was a hobby.

But as my readership has grown, I have thought of the possibility of blogging full time, rather than something I just do on the side.

Although I am earning a little money from the blog, it is not enough to sustain me, so there is still that goal to be achieved.

I have not really decided what direction I want my blog to take, but for now I will just keep blogging my experiences.

4. Here’s what most people ask themselves when their blogs still get little traffic: How do I get more? What do you tell such people? What can they learn from your story growing your site?

Be patient. It took me time to grow the number of visitors to my site.

You need to be persistent in what you blog about, have a specific topic and be good at it.

Share the link to your friends on social media circles and soon people will share the story to their friends and friends of friends.. and it goes from there.

5. How many hours do you spend blogging every week, today, a month ago, a year ago, and what are your reasons for spending that amount of time on your blog?

I am on my blog every single day, checking and responding to comments, or the tab is just open, even if I am doing nothing on it.

I do like 2-3 blog posts a week, because I also work full time.

If I was just blogging full time, I’d do 2-3 blog posts a day! So, it depends on what you want to achieve. So, I’d say I spend 1-2 hours daily on my blog.

6. What’s your definition of great content? How do you go about creating great content yourself?

Great content is original, informative, interesting.

It will depend on what you are writing about, but try to make it interesting and less formal, but still good grammar.

To get content for my blog, I simply draw inspiration from life around me.

I will review a book I just read or a phone I am currently using.

7. Networking is said to be a good thing. What have you done, or do today, to connect with other bloggers, leaders, entrepreneurs and business owners in your niche and other niches?

The best decision I ever did was to join BAKE: Bloggers Association of Kenya.

I get informed of campaigns, events, and other related happenings that could be beneficial to my blog.

Through the events, you meet other bloggers and entrepreneurs in the same space as you.

8. What’s the one thing you’d spend most of your time doing if you started a new blog today? Where would your focus be? (do share your reasons please)

My biggest focus would be on generating great and relevant content.

Make every visit to your site worth it for your reader. Provide useful, informative and interesting content.

Then after I have the content, I’d start publicizing the blog.

9. What can one do to create a blog that says what’s been said over a thousand times differently and still manage to attract readers and get their content shared?

It’s adding that personal touch. Sharing your experience on a topic that maybe has been written elsewhere, but the main point is, you are sharing the content from your own perspective.

10. People are obsessed with getting more traffic, money, comments, followers…Tell me, what should they really focus on when they start worrying over the numbers – for example how they only have a few followers and people come to their site after working really hard on their site for months?

Blogging is just like any other field, a lot of passion is needed.

If your main aim is making money but you have no passion for blogging, you will not make it.

You need to realize that once you have passion, content generation for your blog will be easy and of course, after content, everything else comes later.

So, know why you are starting your blog, and even if people don’t read, your content is out there and someday someone will stumble on it, and who knows?

11. What’s your advice for someone who starts a blog because they simply want to make money online – and they think that blogging is the best way to achieve this goal?

As discussed in #10 above.

12. How much effort did you put in your blog before you made your first USD 100 from it – and how did you make the one hundred dollars?

Honestly, I didn’t put that much effort. The first $100 I made was probably from a Nokia phone I was given to review, back when I was in campus. The Nokia C3, I think.

13. What steps did you take to go from someone that doesn’t make money blogging to someone who makes money blogging?

Focus on content generation. Once you have good content, then brands will want to be associated with you.

You could get products for review or get paid to write sponsored blog posts.

14. What are some non-blogging things you had to deal with in your life in order to keep growing your blog into what it has become today?

Avoid negative people who wonder why you are wasting time blogging, or who think blogging is not a serious thing.

If it’s your passion do it.

I also have to invest in a good internet connection in order to keep up to date with the blogosphere.

You have to be always online when you’re a blogger, it’s not a touch-and-go situation, always thinking about next ideas for blogging.

Every time you are out there, everything you do, interact with, you ask yourself how this can be put up into a blog post.

15. What is the best advice you received that has helped you stay with your blog and continue improving it? (If you remember where the advice came from, mention names please)

Honestly, blogging motivation has always come from within for me.

However, the encouragement of Kachwanya, who is the chairman of BAKE, Martin Gicheru of Techweez.com and others in the BAKE community have really encouraged me not to slack off my blogging game.

16. Any ebooks, courses, products or services that you highly recommend other blog owners to get now?

I don’t really have any ebooks or courses to recommend, except that I like WordPress for hosting blogs. It’s been awesome so far.Interview with blogger Harriet Ocharo of SavvyKenya.com blog

What have you learnt as someone who thinks of blogging in Kenya – as a hobby or to make money? What are you thinking now that you’ve gone through the interview? Let me know in the comments below.

To learn more about Harriet and her blog, Savvy Kenya, click here.

And don’t forget to pick something from this interview and actually use it. implement what you’ve learnt. See what happens. It never hurts to put into practice something great you’ve learnt.

Online newspaper: How to start a news blog

Breaking news, general news updates and blogging on things going on in and outside Kenya is a huge business.

Every single day, there are many Kenyans and non-Kenyans (interested in what’s happening and affecting Kenya and it’s people) who rely on local TV stations, FM radio stations, daily newspapers, weeklies and magazines to stay informed.

Providing news updates to internet users in Kenya

And then of course there are many popular news websites and blogs in the country that are frequently updated and can be accessed on the go (anywhere) as long as one has internet access.

More and more Kenyans are buying smartphones, tablets and laptop computers.

And the number of internet users in the country is ever on the increase – with more people accessing the internet via their mobile phones compared to desktop computers.

Starting your news blog in Kenya (what you need to get started)

Meaning there is a lot of people (market) interested in news updates.Online newspaper: How to start a news blog

Your work then is to register a domain name, pay for web hosting, install WordPress self-hosted version and create a news blog to satisfy this growing appetite for digital content.

You can build a general-type news blog or publish updates on a narrower more niche topic – like sports (or one specific kind of sports), county news from all 47 counties (or just one county), tech, banking and financing, private sector, lifestyle, public sector, energy, diaspora news, entertainment (showbiz), agriculture, town or city-specific news blog among many others.

To help you decide on which route to take (general vs. niche topics) make sure to have a well-grounded reason on why you are starting a blog in the first place.

Read this article in its entirety for inspiration – for the ideas you will get after reading it will help you launch your blog with a strong foundation.

If you have an interest in what’s going in this country yourself and you can write and provide frequent updates (or hire writers to help you create content), have internet access and know a thing or two about promoting content on the internet then you are set and ready.

A few things to do when starting the blog and building it into an established media company in Kenya

1. Decide if you want your news blog to cover specific issues in Kenya or be broad in the scope of your coverage

Why? There are many competitors already – from websites and blogs that get millions of unique visitors and pageviews each month to those that get a few thousand visits each month.

The decision on what you specifically want to cover can help you differentiate yourself from the many Kenyan news blogs and websites that have already been launched by companies (some listed in the Nairobi Securities Exchange – NSE – like Standard Media Group and Nation Media Group), individual bloggers and teams of writers.

Readers have many options. Being different and offering fresh updates often therefore are some of the best ways you can differentiate yourself from the onset and quickly grow your blog traffic – number of repeat visits and blog revenue (from individuals, organizations, companies, and businesses that pay to advertise on your blog – via banners, Google AdSense, affiliate programs, sponsored posts etc.)

2. Research how other news blogs in Kenya gather, write and publish new posts

Do they just publish commentaries on current issues? How about word count – are the length of their blog posts just a few hundred words each with one or two images?

Do they provide original reporting to their readers – even if that means gathering updates by interviewing persons of interest to their audience via email or in person?

Why do they do it the way they are doing it? Is it working? And more importantly – how can you add your personal spin and do things better yet not deviate from the successful formula / blueprint they are already using?

You want to ask yourself all these questions, so that when you launch your blog, you can rely on testing things that you already know resonate with Kenyans who read, listen to or watch news online.

If other blogs are writing news commentaries and embedding relevant YouTube videos in the content area, it must be working.

All you have to do then (after doing your research) is to test things to see what works and what doesn’t then make the necessary changes.

3. Decide if you are going to be the only person writing for your news blog or if you are going to hire some Kenyan freelancers to help

Blogging takes a lot of hard work – and requires tremendous amounts of energy. Something you may hope your readers will understand – and maybe sympathize.

But you know better. They are after what they want – which is news – and not the challenges you are facing to bring them the updates.

Your readers will expect more updates from you every time they come to your blog.

That means you have to publish at least one or two updates every day. And do it early enough (and in a thorough way) before other blogs publish articles on the same topics.

If you don’t have the time to blog daily your options of running a successful news blog in Kenya become pretty slim – unless you get the time (which you can) or hire a team (of writers, virtual assistants, reporters, journalists and experts in various fields) to help you stay consistent in providing fresh updates to your readers.

You can also do both if you want to – essentially creating a team that helps you run your blog. At least this is the trend I see with some popular news blogs in Kenya that often publish 5 to 25, and sometimes even thirty articles, per day all year round.

4. Decide if your news blog is going to accept content contribution from others

You should decide early if you want to allow guest post contributions (citizen journalism) from others or not.

Whatever decision you make though realize that allowing people to submit tips and news reports via your blog can result in some great gems that you can spruce up and publish on your blog as fresh articles for your readers.

When you open your blog to accept contributions you will also have a keen eye that can quickly judge what you receive in your inbox.

And as an editor, you will learn how to be as quick and ready to say no just as easily as you say yes.

You won’t have to publish everything you receive. Why? Because it is all about giving your readers what they want – something some of your contributors will refuse to understand.

Some, wanting to write for your site, will see your blog as a way to promote themselves – and whatever agenda they have in mind which could be in opposition with the one or two reasons why you started your blog in the first place.

5. Decide on the main sources you will use to inspire the news you publish on your blog

In the beginning you will be watching news on TV (and clips on YouTube), curating images on other websites like Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and WhatsApp, checking your Twitter and Facebook updates and feeds, reading newspapers (local dailies), going through your Google News or feed reader, checking trends on Google Trends, Twitter, forums and Facebook and checking what other established news sites in Kenya publish.

As your site grows and you get more funds to run your daily operations, you will dedicate more funds to hire employees to help with original reporting – boosting the credibility and reputation of your blog (online newspaper) even further.

6. Decide, quickly, on a domain name for your news blog and register it then get web hosting and start publishing

Why am I repeating this? Because it is easy to waste a lot of time just picking a domain name, paying for web hosting, installing WordPress script (plugins and themes) and then starting to publish new articles right way.

Maybe it’s because of procrastination. Or excitement. Or over-planning. Or spending a lot of time watching TV – thinking the more time you spend watching news the better your commentaries will become – not realizing that there must be a balance – and that articles (which in the news business can have a short shelf-life) don’t write themselves.

So, just get the step of setting up your blog over with and then start publishing new articles of events that are happening in Kenya today to your blog and your social media accounts.

If you need a quick guide on all this, check this blogging ebook (online course) and then get in touch if you want it.

7. Encourage sharing of news posts you publish

How? You can start by adding sharing buttons on your blog posts and images to make it easier for your blog visitors to share your articles with their families and circle of friends on various popular social networking sites and messaging apps.

Also add as many images in your articles as you possibly can – and make it easy for your readers to share them – and links to your posts – by adding sharing buttons on your images (e.g. on image hover or when they press and hold using free WordPress plugins like Sumo).

Also you can take advantage of paid advertising to get your initial readers to help you promote the stories and updates you publish on your blog.

With your KCB Pepea MasterCard debit card you can pay for ads on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Adwords, Instagram, Linkedin – and even forums, websites and blogs run by other Kenyans selling advertising space – to promote your articles.

For example, with Facebook advertising, you can drive up to 1,000 unique visitors from Facebook to your news blog each day (with clicks to website being your objective when setting up your ad campaign on FB) with a budget of less than Kenya Shillings 2,500 (that is 30,000 unique visitors a month in blog traffic just from one single source / referrer like Facebook, for 75,000 Kenyan Shillings).

And you can recoup some of that money by building an email list (where you can later promote products and services sold by Kenyan companies in various online shopping websites – as an affiliate), showing ads from ad networks like AdSense, selling your own services or products or getting sponsors to fund a percentage of your operations (in return for promoting their business, services and products on your blog).

8. Include interviews – and publish lots of them if you can

When your news blog is doing well, in month one or a few months after launching it and receiving daily traffic in the range of a few hundreds to thousands of unique visitors, many Kenyans you email for an interview will likely say yes – and follow through in their promise to answer your questions.

Not all of them, but many.

The good thing about interviews, which you can do via email, chat, in person or Skype, is that they present readers with new insights and often details rarely found on other sites.

If the answers come from an authority, expert or a person celebrated by many Kenyans, chances are high that publishing such interviews will result in good traffic – and loyal readers – if you keep doing these quality interviews often.

9. Post news frequently to your blog

Publish new articles every day.

Readers will want something new from you – original reporting, your perspective on current affairs, the latest in Kenya’s politics, innovations in Kenya, consumer issues, developments (both at national and county level) and answers to the top concerns of Kenyans.

There is plenty to cover.

So, keep your readers updated with fresh content.

10. Check incoming searches and write more posts around them

Using your analytics tool – like Jetpack site stats or Google Analytics, you will see some of the queries people type in search engines before they land on your blog.

If they are searches relevant to what your site is about but happen to be inadequately covered write articles around such topics and publish them on your blog.

You can also use the data you get from your incoming searches log to update already published news articles to make them more detailed and in-depth.

Incoming searches are a sort of feedback from your readers.

Use the feedback well – and publish more blog posts to solicit even more feedback from readers which you can use to improve your blog.

11. Submit your blog to BAKE – Bloggers Association of Kenya – website

Why? So that whenever you publish an article on your blog, a link to it will be automatically created on BAKE website (which some people use to find new blogs in Kenya or to keep up with fresh updates from their favourite Kenyan bloggers) with a title, a short intro and a link back to your post for those who want to read more.

This is one way for others to discover your blog.

It is also a good way to network with other Kenyan bloggers – who often themselves check the updates from the many blogs submitted to BAKE by members (last I checked, you can easily pay for your BAKE membership fee via M-PESA).

In conclusion

If you want to start a successful news blog in Kenya what is covered above is what you need to pay attention to.

This article has not gone into how to buy web hosting, how to choose a domain name (and extension), things to consider before paying for web hosting in Kenya, how to access cPanel, how to increase your blog traffic, how to install a blogging CMS (content management system) like WordPress (self-hosted), how to do keyword research, how to install a theme, how to choose and install some of the best free WordPress plugins and configure everything.

Why? Because some of these topics have already been covered in various articles, ebooks and online courses found on Niabusiness.com.

If you are interested in starting your news blog but need help with some of the things covered in this article, you can get in touch with me via email here to request help – if you want to take advantage of any of Niabusiness.com freelance services.

If you have a question related to anything discussed in this article that is better suited as a comment instead of an email, the comments section is all yours.

Post your comments below.

Kenyan bloggers: their top 8 concerns as they work on growing their blogs

As part of the how to start a blog in Kenya series, today, let’s look at some of the concerns of bloggers in this country.

Most people I know would want their blogs to be featured in every top 50 or 100 blogs list in Kenya (and maybe you would like that too), not so?

With blogging, always comes many responsibilities and challenges. It is easy to abandon a blog after a few months of activity.

It is easier to get discouraged, especially when one realizes that they got entangled in all the make money blogging in Kenya hype they read about online.

More Kenyans are creating new blogs daily, so I thought about giving some hope to fellow bloggers.

Below find answers to some of the questions Kenyan bloggers keep asking themselves.

1. Will I still enjoy blogging four – seven months from now?

This is a question every new Kenyan blogger should ask themselves. It is easier to loose focus along the way. It is easier to get distracted and channel all the attention and energy your blog once received to other activities.

After four months of blogging, you may realize that you are not even closer to achieving some of your goals. You may no longer feel motivated to login to your dashboard to add new posts and delete comments from spammers.

2. So what is a Kenyan blogger to do, to never abandon their blog?

  • Stick to your schedule. If you started out by updating your blog three times a week, don’t let a week pass by without adding fresh content to your blog.
  • Write new articles every time you are free (and feel like writing) because having a plan or blog mission that isn’t effective won’t lead to any progress.
  • Think about what you want to do with your blog seven months from now, then stick to doing things that will help you get where you want to be.

3. Will I make enough money to pay my bills with a blog, in Kenya?

One of the things that normally makes blogging attractive is the fact that blogs can earn the owner money. Not every blogger wants the big bucks.

Some bloggers, here in Kenya,  just want their blog to reach a level where it can lift some financial burden off the owner.

Keep working on it. Soon enough your blog will start attracting a few cents. If you keep on blogging, your blog might attract thousands of shillings (or even millions).

Just keep giving value tirelessly and your blog will be able to pay its own bills (domain registration and web hosting, for example) in a few months or years. Just don’t blog to make money.

4. Will I get enough blog traffic to help me achieve my goals?

Different bloggers in Kenya do different things; the results are never the same for every blogger.

Lack of traffic can get one cursing and wondering why they are not the only one who understands how get-more-traffic-techniques work.

Some may give up on their blogs after writing brilliant posts for a few months because of failing to meet their traffic-goals.

This reminds me of a part in Napoleon Hill’s book Think and Grow Rich that some people never realize that at the point when they are giving up, they are usually three feet from gold.

5. Should I cover Kenyan issues only in my blog?

It depends. Different blogs cover different topics. Some topics are universal in nature. You are free to write blog posts targeting mainly Kenyans.

That doesn’t mean you should forget the needs of people beyond Kenyan borders – if you want them to benefit from consuming the content published on your site.

Don’t restrict yourself too much. If an article you are writing will be of interest to your blog’s audience, go ahead and publish it.

6. Should I start more than one blog?

I’ll only advise one to register two blogs or more if:

  • They are able to take care of each blog
  • They are ready to spend more time working on each blog
  • They want to talk about more than one topic and think that each should have its own blog
  • You have read the post, 30 reasons to start a blog, and you are sure about your reasons for wanting to start another blog

 My opinion on Kenyan bloggers and their blogs

There are many less-known and popular Kenyan blogs owned by hard working bloggers. Some are just getting started. Others have been blogging for months or years now.

I have been following several Kenyan blogs for a long time and I can confidently say that Kenyan bloggers (serious blog owners) are headed for great things.

The power that Kenyan bloggers wield

Some bloggers have become experts in a way…capable of influencing thousands of Kenyans.

Publishing an article and within minutes approving comments that support your opinions or not – that I call power.

There are several Kenyan blogs out there working wonders. They dish out tips year in year out. The bloggers behind them never tire. They equip their audience with the right information. They never let Kenyans wander alone on the web. They provide solutions to local problems.

They have their own way of Kenyanising things and you bet most of their visitors love what they do.

What about…

When Kenyan bloggers misuse this power

Tell me what happens. Bad things happen. Remember the post-poll chaos? There were many Kenyan bloggers unashamedly telling people who frequented their blogs to tolerate tribalism.

What does that mean to people who take a blogger’s every word as the gospel truth? These people would go ahead and do as the blogger says.

Some bloggers have not used this platform for its intended purpose – doing good and empowering people. People make mistakes yes…but bloggers should not make such gross mistakes.

One article, less than a thousand words, can get someone killed. We, therefore need to come together and unite Kenyans – this is just one of the ways to become a happy blogger.

Do we Kenyans make money blogging?

According to articles, I have been reading on various blogs by Kenyans, some are making money.

Some cash in on Google AdSense, freelancing gigs and affiliate programs.

Some have sponsors. Some sell ads directly to whoever is in need. Some sell their products and services on their blogs.

7. Is the money made online by Kenyan bloggers enough?

Most people would say, ‘It is never enough’. We still don’t attract millions (of dollars) like some of our counterparts in Europe, USA, Canada and other parts of the world.

Whether it’s trickling in slowly or flooding our bank accounts, patience and continuous improvement leads to more earnings. We want to have fun blogging. We want to achieve the greater mission first – informing and empowering the masses.

8. Are Kenyan bloggers united?

Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) through bake.or.ke attempts to bring Kenyan bloggers together. It has achieved some of its goals but I still feel that bloggers in Kenya should interact and share more.

Of all the Kenyan bloggers I e-mailed (a few years back, 2011 should be the year), only two replied to my e-mails (in that year). That shows that Kenyan bloggers are united in a way. They reply to emails.

It is hard juggling work and blogging especially given the fact that most Kenyans are blogging on a part-time basis.

If you set aside two hours to blogging five times in a week, it may be difficult to reply to all the e-mails – if there are hundreds or thousands of them.

Still, Kenyan bloggers can find ways to team up. BAKE is doing great things and I hope Kenyans, blogging or not, will offer their support.

What are your concerns? What are your thoughts? What is your story as a blogger? How did you start blogging? Please share in the comments below.

Walter Akolo of FreelancerKenya.com: An interview on how to start a blog in Kenya, get traffic and make money from it

Today, we have the founder of FreelancerKenya.com, Walter Akolo, sharing his experiences, observations, tips and strategies that you can use to start your own blog in Kenya and grow it into something popular, bringing in many readers (customers) attracted to the free and premium content you create.Walter Akolo of FreelancerKenya.com: An interview on how to start a blog in Kenya, get traffic and make money from it

He tells you what to do to grow your blog (lessons he has learnt as one of the top bloggers in Kenya), monetize it and still have enough time left for other things that are important to you.

So, once again, we welcome Walter.

1. Why did you get into blogging and decided to start your own blog?

I started blogging so that I could help more people to start earning online without being conned.

There was a lot to learn about but few people giving free, genuine information on earning online.

2. How long have you been blogging, on what topics – why? (share your story)

I have been blogging for two years. The topic is making money online. This was based on my prior experience of being conned and losing a lot of money.

I decided that I would strive to help as many people as possible to make money online without losing a dime.

3. How are things going so far? Have you been able to achieve the goals you set out when you first started?

Things are great so far. I have gone past the goals I had set when starting. I never thought I would get this far this fast.

4. Here’s what most people ask themselves when their blogs still get little traffic: How do I get more? What do you tell such people? What can they learn from your story growing your site?

A blog is like a little baby. It has to be taken great care of. It is most difficult when starting. Traffic needs to be worked on almost daily for a new blog.

I would advise people to enroll on traffic courses or online courses that have something to do with traffic.

There are lots of free and paid courses out there. Some of the things to look out for include SEO, forum marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, social bookmarking, article marketing and directory submission.

5. How many hours do you spend blogging every week, today, a month ago, a year ago, and what are your reasons for spending that amount of time on your blog?

On a normal week I spend approximately 4 hours on my blog. However, I did not blog at all last month and over the last six months I haven’t done much on my blog apart from marketing.

This is because my blog is at a level where it gets traffic whether or not I am active there.

However, I have decided to continue blogging and marketing vigorously so that I stay relevant in the market.

6. What’s your definition of great content? How do you go about creating great content yourself?

Great content is content that is useful and helpful to a reader.

If a reader had a burning problem and lands on a blog, the content should be able to successfully guide them out of their problem.

7. Networking is said to be a good thing. What have you done, or do today, to connect with other bloggers, leaders, entrepreneurs and business owners in your niche and other niches?

I follow, subscribe to and communicate with lots of bloggers on my niche and others.

For Kenyan bloggers I have even formed a friendship with some and we always exchange notes on how to better this awesome niche.

8. What’s the one thing you’d spend most of your time doing if you started a new blog today? Where would your focus be? (do share your reasons please)

I would focus on marketing the blog. This assumes that all the content I write will be of great quality. Without marketing, even the best of blogs will never be seen by anyone.

9. What can one do to create a blog that says what’s been said over a thousand times differently and still manage to attract readers and get their content shared?

This is where personality comes in. It is important to add personality into a story.

This can be done by story-telling, humor and persuasion skills.

Therefore, a reader who has always ignored the same information from one blog may be compelled to read that information from another.

10. People are obsessed with getting more traffic, money, comments, followers…Tell me, what should they really focus on when they start worrying over the numbers – for example how they only have a few followers and people come to their site after working really hard on their site for months?

They should focus on marketing their blog through the traffic getting methods I have mentioned above and more.

11. What’s your advice for someone who starts a blog because they simply want to make money online – and they think that blogging is the best way to achieve this goal?

We all start blogs to make money. But if that is the primary goal, the blog may not make as much.

Top blogs usually focus on solving a problem.

The more people’s problems are solved, the more they will be willing to come back again and again and even spend money on the blogger’s products.

12. How much effort did you put in your blog before you made your first USD 100 from it – and how did you make the one hundred dollars?

I put in real effort. I would do a lot of research on search engine optimization and implement.

I even did a whole course on affiliate marketing which focused on blogging. My first $100 was through my first eBook. I only started selling after I had acquired a good following.

13. What steps did you take to go from someone that doesn’t make money blogging to someone who makes money blogging?

The first step was the idea of helping people to make money online.

After that I took other steps such as market research, identifying problems, solving them in my blog and marketing the solution oriented blog posts.

Email marketing was one of the best decision I ever made since it gives me repeat buyers. I give lots of free information via email so when once in a while I sell something, lots of people buy.

14. What are some non-blogging things you had to deal with in your life in order to keep growing your blog into what it has become today?

I had to ensure I was more organized so that I could balance between my faith, my family and my career.

I also had to do a lot of prioritization since there are a lot of things that are more important than blogging.

15. What is the best advice you received that has helped you stay with your blog and continue improving it? (If you remember where the advice came from, mention names please)

The best advice I ever got was from Mark Ling of Affilorama who taught me about email marketing. This has been one of my biggest assets to date.

16. Any ebooks, courses, products or services that you highly recommend other blog owners to get now?

They can get my free eBook on blogging by signing up to my mailing list (click the link below to head to Walter’s Freelancer Kenya blog).

Apart from that they can look for Blog Post Promotion by Kristi Hines, AffiloBlueprint by Mark Ling’s Affilorama and the lots of free training over at QuickSprout.com.

What do you take from all this? Please share in the comments. To check out Walter’s blog (and sign up via email to receive updates from him), click here.

How to start a blog in Kenya + install WordPress on a domain (web hosting account)

If you want to learn how to start a blog in Kenya, it probably means that you are ready to publish blog posts in a topic or two you have in mind, knowing that someone somewhere doing their search on Google, Bing, Yahoo, Duckduckgo or any other search engine of their choice will find your articles, videos, podcasts, ebooks and course useful.How to start a blog in Kenya + install WordPress on a domain (web hosting account)

It also means that you have a strong reason for why you want to start a new blog in the first place and create content for your audience in your particular niche.

Walter Akolo, a Kenyan blogger with a successful freelancing blog, I previously interviewed shared a lot of tips you can use to get you started with your own blog.

Not to forget, another Kenyan blogger, Harriet Ocharo (Savvy Kenya), also did share some great tips you might find helpful as someone getting started with their own blog.

So, how do you go about starting a blog in Kenya and turning into a successful site with every new article you publish, even if that means writing and publishing 3 blog posts a day (90 posts per month)?

That’s what we want to look at below.

Why start a blog in Kenya in the first place?

The reasons to launch a new blog range from the desire to share ideas, give in-depth answers to questions a searcher may go to Google for (obviously hoping to get an in-depth answer amongst the many results the search engine returns).

Start a blog in Kenya: Use this paid guide to get started if you like. Read it here.

You can also start your blog to share your thoughts and increase awareness about something (topic, theme, product or service) or someone (like leaders and people who inspire you) – think about writing opinion pieces, reviews of products and services, experiences and news commentaries.

There is always a common theme, regardless of the direction you want to take – and that is to bring to other people’s attention something you are thinking.

It could be an idea, something not many people are paying attention to, a solution to a particular problem that you or someone else have thought of, a better way to do something…

Blogging in Kenya is hard work and takes a lot of time

Blogging is hard work, takes a lot of time, requires tenacity and the ability to stay consistent while thinking long term.

Meaning? No one, at least most people wants to spend hours upon hours every single week on something that may not attract even that many readers (unique visitors) every single day.

The blog should be able to make some money, enough to at least cover web hosting fees and domain name renewal charges.

There are also people who want to go beyond this and make even more: earning money by placing Google AdSense ads on their blog, monetizing with Chitika, making online income with affiliate programs, selling a service or product on their blog or just by using their site to generate leads.

Does that describe you and what you want to do in any way?

To answer the question ‘Why start a blog in the first place?’, learn more about some of the concerns of Kenyan bloggers – you’ll learn a lot from this post.

How much does it cost to start a blog in Kenya – in Kenyan Shillings?

To answer this question, we might look at questions like how much does it cost to construct or buy a house in Kenya.

The answer? It depends – on a lot of things.

There a lot of variables.

One which isn’t always taken into consideration is time.

Take another second and think about this – the time it will take you to build that blog you want – and grow it.

Web hosting and domain registration charges for blogs in Kenya

But you can easily get a domain name with a .com, .net, .org, .co.ke, .biz or a .or.ke extension registered right now for 1,000 Kenyan shillings then get web hosting for an amount ranging between Kenya Shillings 1,000 and 10,000 Kenyan Shillings – or more depending on how much traffic your blog gets from search engines, other websites linking to your posts and traffic from social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Linked, Pinterest … and messaging platforms like WhatsApp.

If you know how to setup things yourself, you may probably need just KSh 2,000 to start blogging in Kenya.

But if you need help and someone to guide you so that you don’t end up frustrated whenever something doesn’t work as you planned, you may have to pay more for peace of mind – which means you will also have more time to dedicate to writing and publishing new articles and a little more left to spend with your loved ones and on other activities.

The main costs are for the domain name, web hosting, internet (you can use your modem, laptop, tablet, a computer in a cyber café, your phone or a combination of all these) and training (for example online courses or ebooks to learn what to do when it comes to blogging – specifically launching a new blog.)

Learn more: The real cost (in Kenyan shillings) of starting a blog.

Before you learn how to install WordPress, here is where you can install the free script on your domain once you buy hosting

Say, you have a domain where you want to install WordPress CMS script, there are three places you can install the script: on the domain root, on a subfolder / subdirectory or on a subdomain.

Using Niabusiness.com domain as an example, here is how your blog’s or website’s address will look like depending on which route you take:

  • niabusiness.com – in this case WordPress is installed in the root of the domain.
  • niabusiness.com/blog – in this case WordPress is installed on a subfolder called ‘blog’. I’ll show you how to do this below using one-click install software that most web hosting providers make available to their clients – like Softaculous or Quick Install, which are found in your cPanel admin area – and are free to use in installing various free scripts to power a blog or website.
  • blog.niabusiness.com – in this case WordPress is installed on a subdomain called ‘blog’. I’ll show you, below, how to create a subdomain that can later be used for WordPress installation.

Note that for the subdomain or subfolder examples above, you don’t necessarily have to use the word ‘blog’ when installing WordPress. You can use any other word you like. For example: shop, kb (for knowledge base), downloads, documentation, news, interviews, tutorials, reviews, faq (for frequently asked questions) among others.

Before I show you how to install WP, here are…

7 web hosting companies I recommend for your WordPress blog or website – get a hosting plan and install WordPress

Note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you elect to buy through the links, Niabusiness.com gets paid a commission for the referrals – at no extra cost to you – thank you, if you choose to buy via Niabusiness affiliate links
  1. HostGator.
  2. Bana Hosting. Great hosting, with cPanel, Softaculous free script installer, free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates for domains and affordable web hosting plans – with room to upgrade to a VPS or dedicated server down the road if your site grows big and starts to receive lots of web traffic from search engines and various social media sites. Check their hosting plans here.
  3. Kenya Web Experts.
  4. Bluehost.
  5. A Small Orange.
  6. A2 Hosting.
  7. Niabusiness Hosting Kenya. Starting at 6,000 – 7,000 Shillings a year for its Starter plan, Niabusiness can help you get a domain, hosting and help you launch your blog. Learn more here or contact me to see how I can help you with everything from web hosting , domain registration, and WordPress installation and setup.

And in case you are wondering where to register your blog’s domain name, here are…

5 websites to register a domain name for your WordPress blog or website

  1. Namesilo. Register a .com domain name for only US$ 8.99 a year. Use PayPal to pay for it or use a debit card (credit card). Some debit cards like KCB Pepea MasterCard can be loaded via Safaricom M-PESA, and then used to purchase whatever you want online. Once on Namesilo website, use the coupon code BP to get a dollar off. That means you’ll only be charged $7.99 a year for the domain registration.
  2. Namecheap.
  3. Kenya Web Experts.
  4. GoDaddy.
  5. Niabusiness.comcost of domain registration is bundled in Niabusiness hosting plans. Learn more here or contact me to see how I can help.

Of course you can also register a brand new domain name for your blog with any of the hosting companies I’ve listed above when ordering a hosting plan – in which case you won’t have to change nameservers.

However if you go with domain registrars like Namesilo, you’ll have to change your domain’s nameservers to reflect those shown to you by the email sent to you by your hosting providers. Changing nameservers is easy.

Here is how to do it on Namesilo for example:

How to change domain nameservers on Namesilo.com

1.If you already registered a domain name, with Namesilo before buying hosting, login to Namesilo here.

If it is the first time you are registering a domain with Namesilo and have already paid for a hosting plan from any of the providers above like Bana Hosting, HostGator or Bluehost, you can change your domain’s Nameservers during the ordering process like I show you below…

How to pay for the services offered by these domain registrars and web hosting companies even if they are not in Kenyan Shillings but in US Dollars

Payments can be made in Kenyan Shillings using a debit card where you load funds (say from your bank account, Safaricom M-PESA, KCB Mobi, Equity Eazzy account) and use for online shopping. It can be VISA, MasterCard, Discover etc.

Go get a KCB Pepea card for this, if you want to make payments to any of these companies (that charge in USD) using your debit card. You can also later use the KCB Pepea prepaid MasterCard to verify your PayPal account.

Via PayPal. If you have a PayPal account, use it to pay for your hosting bill and domain registration fees. If you don’t have money in your account (PayPal balance), use any of the services of reputable PayPal to M-PESA withdrawal services in Kenya to help you load funds to your PayPal – and use the top up amount you receive in your PayPal to pay for your hosting and blog’s domain.

How long does it take for your blog to be online?

Does it take long for a blog you start to be found on the internet?

Actually, once you pay for the domain and registration you can start working on your blog immediately once your hosting company sends you the cPanel username and password for your new site – changing the design, adding functionality, verifying it with search engines like Google and claiming it on Alexa and publishing new blog posts.

You can even have some articles ready so that once you setup your blog, say, using self-hosted version of WordPress (which I highly recommend instead of going with the free blogs on WordPress.com or Blogger.com), you can publish and schedule some to auto-publish at future dates.

Add your blog to BAKE and connect with other Kenyan bloggers

Once your blog is up, make sure to add it to the Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) website. This is not a must though.

The BAKE website allows you as a blogger in Kenya to sign up to their website and add your blog’s RSS feed so that whenever you publish new articles, a title to the article and a link to it is displayed on the bake.or.ke website.

You can meet many bloggers by going to the Bloggers Association of Kenya site and make it easy for people who go to the site to find your blog.

NOTE: To activate your BAKE account, you’ll need to pay a KSh 1000 membership fee via Safaricom’s M-PESA otherwise your blog post titles won’t display on their site whenever you update your blog with new articles.

If you are interested in a blogging course or ebook to get you started…

…then you can take this blogging e-course (ebook) available on Niabusiness.com.

Learn step by step how to choose a domain name, web hosting company, a niche or topic, install WordPress, install a WordPress theme, install plugins to your WordPress blog, write and publish blog posts and more.

In summary, here is what to do now

  • Decide on a web hosting company – one in Kenya or another country. You can host your blog with Niabusiness.com Hosting Services Kenya.
  • Decide on a name you want to use for your blog and register it as a domain name.
  • Pay for web hosting and install WordPress and setup your blog or get someone to help you. Niabusiness.com helps you do all this if you host your blog with us.
  • When you are done doing that, write and publish new articles to your blog. Get step-by-step guidance in Niabusiness.com online course, How to Start a Successful Blog.
  • Verify your blog with search engines like Google, Yandex and Bing and submit a sitemap.
  • Continue publishing new articles and promoting your blog.

If you want to start your blog and host it with Niabusiness hosting service learn more here. If something is unclear and you want an answer, feel free to use the comments section below to ask your question.

Head to Niabusiness.com blog to read recent articles (related to starting a blog in Kenya) published on the website.

Checked your 2015 KCSE results and realized you passed very well? Congratulations!

You know the realization that comes with putting in the hard work before and during an exam, in this case, 2015 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education, and finding out that you passed very well – when the results come out?

That’s what you are experiencing right now (if you put in the hard work and are pleased with the results that KNEC sent you).

If you haven’t got your results yet here’s how to do so.

 How to check 2015 KCSE results via SMS

To quickly check your KCSE results at a cost of Kenya Shillings 25, send a text message with your index number to the short code 22252.

It shouldn’t take long before you get a reply – one text with your results – for each subject and overall grade.

Also remember that there may be some delays depending on the number of people (students, parents, siblings, guardians and relatives) sending such texts at the same time.

So, exercise some patience.

Now, it is time to celebrate your good KCSE results

Now that the anxiety that comes with waiting for your results are over, it’s celebration time.

You are past the waiting period and are now grinning ear to ear.

The doubt that comes with whether your results would be cancelled given how much exam malpractice was witnessed in KCSE examinations last year; you are past that as well.

The nagging fear that sometimes made you wonder if you failed, that too is a thing of the past.

It is now time for celebration.

It is time to be thankful to God for bringing you this far.

I mean, you are now just waiting to go to college or university – provided repeating form four isn’t an option you are considering.

And however much you have heard the word congratulations today, allow me to say it again.

Congratulations!

Your parents, guardians, siblings, sponsors, teachers and school are pleased with you for the effort you put in your work (studies, character and examinations).

Even though questions will arise about who passed very well employing honest versus dishonest methods, I’m inclined to believe you did your best – and made the right decisions last year during your examinations.

The results you have received now makes it easy for you and your parents (guardians) to put your heads together to think of the next chapter of your education.

May be not today (but tomorrow) – for you can take the whole of this day and just celebrate and bathe in the wonder that is lots of congratulatory messages from friends, former schoolmates and family who wished you success before, during and after the exams.

Now is just a good time to celebrate and remind yourself of the good things you did – and make a vow to keep doing those things no matter which direction life may throw you.

It is time to look deeply in your heart and appreciate the thousands sacrifices made by those around you (in the name of love) to ensure you get results worthy to get you a place in a university or college to further your studies and achieve the various goals you have as a person working hard to create a better life for yourself and those around you.

I congratulate you because of the following reasons

I congratulate you because you have gone through the hard times – that is high school – faithfully and emerged from this side with great results – opening doors to greater things: a chance to learn new things that can benefit your family, community and Kenya in general.

I congratulate you for your courage to keep going even when the going was tough – and actually finishing the race. Well.

Many students dropped out of secondary school last year (not because of lack of fees or pocket money or some of the most important resources centre to a student’s success) because the going got tough – and instead of just keeping it together and face the obstacles opted to drop out.

Hopefully, such students will stay focused and commit to finishing high school this year. And then we will celebrate them together next year when their results come out!

I congratulate you because your KCSE results are already teaching you some very important life lessons to you. Like:

I believe your journey up to this point is a great one.

So, keep sharing bits (or all of it) to inspire others to a life of greatness.

Be sure to check this post. It has some very important questions you need to consider now that you have your KCSE results.

The best web hosting companies in Kenya: 7 things to consider before paying your money to any of them

Kenya is blessed with many web hosting companies that have made it easier for individuals and businesses to register domain names, get hosting and be easily found on the internet.

And if you want to start your own website or blog, but wondering how to go about choosing the right hosting provider no matter if they call themselves top or best, read on.

Here are a few things you should consider:

1. What do you need when it comes to paying for a hosting package, domain name and design

It is always a good idea to know what you want. How much money are you willing to pay for web design and web hosting? Do you want to register a domain name with a .co.ke, .com, .net, .ac.ke, .me, or .or.ke extension? What features do you want on your website or blog? Where do you see your site one year from now?

Being clear about what you need helps you make the right decisions when you go comparing prices, packages and services offered by various web hosting companies in Kenya.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You can always send the various companies e-mails and get replies in less than twenty four hours. It might also be a good idea to visit their ‘frequently asked questions’ sections of their websites.

If you prefer making phone calls, don’t hesitate. Get the numbers from their website and let them help you make the right decisions right from the start.

A site can cost as little as one thousand Kenyan shillings or as much as several thousands of shillings or even more. I believe you won’t be going for a really expensive site though. You’ll probably start from down somewhere and upgrade, later, to a package that costs a few thousands more depending on your hosting, functionality, security and design needs.

Don’t pay too little for a slow server if you can manage to pay more for a more efficient, reliable and fast server provided by a reliable host.

2. A look at a hosting company’s testimonials page

Yep, you have to go a step further to check the different persons a company is doing business with. Do you want to be under the same wings with some of the clients? Does the page (and the testimonials in it) sound genuine?

Go a step further by contacting some of the clients to ask them about their experiences with the web hosting company. Some will always reply and offer some useful suggestions. Some hosting companies don’t allow this though. Reason? It may be against their privacy policy.

Visit the various sites managed by the various hosts and see if that can help you in making the right decisions regarding your own domain and hosting needs.

3. How much support you will need from the hosting company you pay your money to

There are people who are able to build their sites from scratch. You might be one of them. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to maintain and manage their sites. Some are ready to learn new things to help them become better webmasters but some don’t have the time or passion to learn these things.

If you’ll be the person who’ll be e-mailing their web host even when a little error occurs on your site, be ready to have the courage to be careful when clicking buttons and links on your cPanel (control panel) and your site’s Content Management System dashboard.

Be ready to pay more if you’ll need more support and start researching and learning more about websites because this will help you someday when you are stuck.

If you want someone to help you manage your site apart from your hosting company, get someone you can trust, pay them but don’t let them fill their pockets with money they don’t deserve. When you (suppose you host your blog or website with us) need help with your blog or website, you can get in touch with us any time for assistance. Click here to see what our hosting clients get.

4. How much effort are you willing to put on your blog or website to make it a success?

Thousands of persons register new sites every hour…and you’ll be joining them soon. But what will you do after that? Will you just let your site collect dust and scare away people a few months down the road? Will you be the person who’ll be messing their site every two weeks?

Will you get tired when the excitement of owning a new blog or website suddenly fades?

Most people never realize the huge responsibilities that come with owning a website. So be prepared. Start working on your site even before it is registered by writing a blog mission, creating enough content and learning different ways to make it a success.

Don’t be swayed with the make money online content. Know what you want and don’t let the make money articles lock you away from your long term goals and beliefs. There is a lot of competition out there and it is better if you start thinking about ways to become an effective blogger even before you pay for a new site.

5. Think about what your website will do (and the best platform to make your work much easier)

There are several scripts to power sites. There are content management systems like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal among others. There are scripts to help you do almost anything, from building an online shop, a forum, an auction site etc.

Get the one that works best for you. You might want to check: Why I chose WordPress to power my blog in this ebook. Also remember to seek your host’s recommendations.

6. Are you prepared for the arrival of the new site

Will you be ready to do what you planned to do when the site is finally registered or will you just start procrastinating? Will you be able to stop your new site from piling more pressure on you? What will you do when you start sleeping fewer hours?

7. What kind of people you want to attract to your website or blog?

Are you selling something and want a particular group to listen to what you have to say? Have you researched more about that market? If yes, go and research some more. If no, it is time you did some research.

If you want someone to help you start a blog or website powered by the popular WordPress script we are here for you. Click here to get started (read more about you get as a client before you commit any of your money).

If you have any questions, post them in the comments below and I’ll get back to you shortly with an answer.

2 web hosting companies in Kenya answer 5 questions frequently asked by those who want to start blogs or create websites

If you are looking for the top or best web hosting company in Kenya, you’ll probably have some questions in mind before you settle on one, among the many, buy hosting and register a new domain name for your blog or website.

Niabusiness Hosting tries its best to answer the questions you may have before and after you get a hosting package of your choice.

But we are also privileged to have two web hosting companies here in Kenya, share answers to some questions that you may need some clarifications on.

Below, find the answers to the questions I asked the team behind Kenya Web Hosting and DeepAfrica.

1. What are some of your most sought after products or services?

Kenya Web Hosting: Our 100MB Starter Package is the most frequently chosen package, with monthly payments available.

Deep Africa: We offer a free .com, .net, .info, .biz, .us for. The package comes with unlimited space, bandwidth, email accounts.

2. What are some of the tips you could give to your clients to get the best value from your products and services?

Kenya Web Hosting: Spend some time reading about search engine optimisation and implement an SEO strategy. There are many myths about SEO but progress can be made by the individual with little or no previous knowledge.

Deep Africa: Being friendly and building relationships with your customer, makes a world of difference when it comes to securing recurring business and getting them to tell their friends about you.

3. Why should one register a website (blog) and host it with you? What is your unique selling proposition?

Kenya Web Hosting: Kenya Web Hosting is not a flash in the pan hosting company. We have been established in Kenya for 6 years and have a good track record with a number of high profile clients. We have mostly relied on word of mouth to grow as we offer excellent customer service and support turnaround.

Deep Africa: Having a diversified offline mix, in that we do advertisement on newspapers, online marketing.

4. What are some of the fears of your potential clients and what can you tell them to dispel such fears?

Kenya Web Hosting: The press makes a big thing about internet security and do not always offer a balanced point of view. Most of the cases of fraud that they report is not ‘hacking’ but ‘phishing’ whereby users GIVE AWAY their details.

I can assure users that, as long as they do not provide their details to unknown parties, and that they double check the origin of emails etc, they will be safe. KenyaWebhosting creates a backup of each client’s website once a week so if anything goes wrong when, for instance creating edits, we can roll back to the previous version.

Deep Africa: They do not want their websites to be down. This interferes with their business and to overcome this we have to make sure that our servers are up 24/7.

5. Any other thing you might want to bring to the attention of people looking for the best domain registration, web design and web hosting services?

Kenya Web Hosting: We strongly recommend that people do not get fooled by ‘unlimited’ package offers. ‘Unlimited’ packages invariably have a clause that says they are not in fact unlimited under certain conditions. For instance, why not get an ‘unlimited’ package and then simply create a YouTube clone.

The reason is obvious, a successful You Tube clone would soon take huge resources to maintain and the promise of ‘unlimited’ would soon break down. It is a dishonest marketing ploy that Kenya Webhosting refuses to follow.

For webdesign and other freelance coding we recommend KenyaFreelance as an upcoming website that has many freelancers registered already, waiting to make offers to clients.

Deep Africa: deepAfrica is a hosting company that allows individuals and organizations to make their website accessible via the World Wide Web. We offer the best service solution at an affordable price.

All these companies have been operating for some time now. They accept payments via mobile money (Lipa na M-PESA, Airtel Money, Orange Money, Yu Cash), Western Union, PayPal etc.

Domain and web hosting prices differ from host to host, but one can easily start a site with as little as two thousand Kenyan shillings and pay more later for hosting, more disk space or bandwidth. You also get the chance to easily manage your site using cPanel.

Remember also that the amount you pay for hosting may differ from host to host depending on how much support you need to start and build a successful website or blog. For example, here at Niabusiness.com, we may charge more but there are also lots of things you get when you pay that much.

So, get your site with us or any of the hosting companies operating in Kenya and start working on it. Make sure, first, to know your needs, for you will be in a better position to build a successful blog or website when you find a host that understands you – one that is ready to help you achieve the goals you have in mind.

Make sure, first, to know your needs, for you will be in a better position to build a successful blog or website when you find a host that understands you – one that is ready to help you achieve the goals you have in mind.

Have any questions, personal experiences or views you’d like to share? Share them in the comments section below.

Online shopping in Kenya – Niabusiness Shop

Yes, you can shop online in Kenya. There are several stores owned by Kenyans and non-Kenyans that allow you to do this.

I am writing this article for three reasons

There are people interested in starting their own online stores in Kenya but are afraid to start because they are not sure whether Kenyans have embraced this concept of shopping online.

  1. There are buyers who are willing to make purchases online but are not sure if it is safe and if they can trust the people running these stores with their money.
  2. There are people worried about the cost of making purchases online – some think it costs more than when buying offline.

Here’s what online shopping is: it is simply making purchase from stores on the internet and having your purchases shipped to a location you specify, for example your home or office.

Offline stores have a location and in that’s the same with online shops: they have a website you can visit any time of the day to buy whatever they are selling.

What can you buy? Anything?

Like offline stores, the ones online also sell different products. There are general stores – the ones selling different products and niche stores – focusing on a single product or one tiny segment of a market.

Here in Kenya, we have stores selling fast moving consumer goods that we get from shops and supermarkets several times a year. There are stores selling electronics, grocery, books, ebooks, online courses and more.

How do you shop online?

Shopping usually involves visiting the website of the specific store you want to buy from. So you must have internet access. Here is where your phone or computer comes in handy.

After visiting the store, you can look for the things you want to buy by clicking on the different categories, using the search function and adding your purchases in your cart by clicking a Buy Now or Add to Cart link or button next to a product.

Once everything you need is in your cart, you can then proceed to My Cart page to view what is in it. How do you this? Usually by clicking a link that reads like: View my Cart or My Cart.

At this stage you can also remove certain products from your cart, increase the quantity of a particular product, say from one copy of a book to two. When you are satisfied, you proceed to the checkout page by clicking the button or link that reads CheckoutProceed to Checkout or Checkout Now.

On the checkout page, you need to provide details like your name, address, choose a mode of payment, shipment address (if the location you want the goods to be shipped to is different from your address), your email address and phone number.

When you are done with that you then click Place order, or Complete order. The goods are then shipped to you when your order has been processed – usually when payment has been received.

With digital products like ebooks in an online store, you are given a link to download your ebooks once you pay for them – no shipment, no waiting for hours or days before you get your purchases.

Payment

Payments can usually be made via debit and credit cards, PayPal, M-Pesa, Airtel Money, Pesapal, Yu Cash, Orange Money or transfer of cash to a bank account owned by the store you make your purchases from.

Shipment

After buying anything online, there’s always some waiting time before a delivery of your purchases is made.

Shipment attracts a little fee from online stores. Others claim to offer free shipment for certain goods. So, the policies around this differ from store to store.

Can you shop for someone else?

Yes. You can buy goods and have them shipped to someone else by providing their address as the shipping address for that particular purchase.

Why shop online?

It is easy and can save time in certain circumstances, especially if you can’t find what you are looking for in the offline stores you visit.

Do your online shopping for ebooks and online courses to improve your life and business. Go to Niabusiness.com online shop section to check the various products and services on sale.

How readers in Kenya can promote Kenyan books, ebooks & their authors

We have all heard many people share their thoughts on why Kenyans don’t enjoy reading books as a pastime.

Some say that we just read newspapers, textbooks, magazines and spend the rest of our time doing things that are not related to reading.

Some people claim that the Kenyan reader is misunderstood by many while others don’t want to be dragged in discussions of this nature.

It is worth noting that discussions like these usually opens doors to more discussions that can help us all understand what is at stake, take note of our weaknesses and strengths, muster enough courage to spend more time reading good literature and take the initiative to promote Kenyan authors and the books and ebooks they write and publish.

Many publishers in Kenya and around the world came on the scene to provide writers with the necessary resource to reach more readers.

Many publishers came on the scene to give readers a selection of affordable ebooks they could choose from.

Many publishers came on the scene to make sure that both the writers and readers build each other up.

And there was a good reason for this.

The writers need readers and readers need writers who produce good literature.

No one party can ensure that more Kenyans fall in love with books. And the moment one party decides to avoid their responsibilities something bad happens.

When writers stop adding the Kenyan feeling to their work because they have to give unto readers whatever they want, something is lost.

When readers stop reading Kenyan literature because they don’t feel as one with it or because they think there is something better, something is lost.

It is even when worse when the time that could be spent reading good books is wasted on other activities that don’t edify the individual indulging them.

What can you do, as someone who loves reading books and ebooks, to make things better?

I don’t want to give you a lecture on how good books can be beneficial to you.

Some make you laugh.

Some help you solve a problem.

Some help you learn about a particular thing or person.

Some help you stay committed to your ideals.

So take some time and check the various online shops and buy a book or ebook you like.

  1. Speak out. If you have ideas that can help authors and publishers promote more good books, feel free to get in touch with the persons concerned.
  2. Share your thoughts about books you have bought and read by writing honest reviews. Many people would like to hear your thoughts about an ebook after you buy and read it.

We love honest reviews for one simple reason:

  • honesty leads authors, readers and publishers to create an industry where authors write great ebooks,
  • publishers give to readers relevant ebooks and print books, and
  • readers who purchase a copy or two write reviews that help other readers in making the right decision when it comes to buying.
  1. Spread the word about books you have bought, read and liked. You can do this on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, Linkedin and other online hubs where you usually spend some time to connect with others.
  2. Recommend ebooks you like via email and the different online hubs mentioned above.
  3. If you happen to be a reader who also likes writing, don’t let your manuscript gather dust. Publish it.
  4. Support the efforts of writers by buying original copies. There will be people who’ll try to get books without paying for them – something that is not good at all.

Piracy is not good for you, the authors, the publisher and Kenya as a whole.

The moment short cuts are taken, a lot of people are hurt and we believe that you don’t want to be amongst the people who spread the pain. So, stick with original copies and encourage others to buy original copies too.

  • Show other people who are still skeptical about ebooks that they have nothing to worry about.

Some people in Kenya have not really embraced the concept of ebooks and they may be missing out on good things because they long for someone to dispel fears that they may have.

Be that person who dispels the fears. Let them know that downloadable books are just as good as print books. Let them know that the value of a book is not entirely pegged on its form.

  • Subscribe via email for free to receive updates on your favourite authors, new authors, bestsellers, new releases, book discounts, launch of affiliate programs, writing contests etc.

This, you can do, by visiting the websites and blogs of various authors, publishers and companies that run online shops in and outside Kenya.

  • Report those who are violating other people’s copyright and intellectual property rights. You love Kenyan authors, right?

Protect them from people who don’t want to honour their part as readers by respecting the great work authors are doing.

  • Spread the word about the books you read. Tell your friends and them. And don’t forget to tell us about yourself, your thoughts and what you think we can do to promote Kenyan literature.

Share them in the comments section below.

Kenya Web Experts hosting review 2019

Kenya Web Experts is one of the popular and best web hosting companies in Kenya for individuals who want to start small (or big) blogs to businesses and institutions that want to build big websites with a reputable hosting company.

Their up-time is good (and your website will be online and working well), making it easy for readers, clients, customers, prospects and users with access to the internet to easily reach and connect with you on your blog or website.

Before we go deep in the review, here is a short summary of the hosting services offered by KenyaWebExperts.com in 2019

  • Shared hosting plans
  • VPS servers
  • Dedicated servers
  • Windows ASP.NET hosting packages
  • Domain registration
  • Website design
  • SSL certificates, and
  • Reseller services (hosting and domain names)

Now let’s review each of the services offered by the Kenyan hosting company.

Domain registration extensions (tlds) offered by Kenya Web Experts, costs and clients targeted in various countries

The hosting provider offers domain registration at cheap and affordable prices payable online via mobile money services like Lipa na M-PESA and gateways like PayPal.Kenya Web Experts hosting review - web hosting and domain registration company in Kenya

Meaning its services are open to any individual or company around the world.

[check their website for all their products and services]

The common domain extensions like .com, .net, .biz, .org, .co.ke, .or.ke, .sc.ke, and .ac.ke are usually sold at Kenya Shillings 1000 – and sometimes less. At the moment – early November 2016 / 2017 – heading to Christmas and end of year holidays (then 2017 / 2018 / 2019!), Kenya Web Experts have already reduced the pricing for the popular and common domain extensions to 890 Kenyan shillings (from KSh 1000).

So, this is probably a good time to get a great discount when registering a new domain name for your website or blog. Get them cheap before their prices go up – usually in mid to late January or February 2017 / 2018 / 2019.

To renew your domain name, also expect to pay between the KSh 890 to 1000 depending on the current domain and hosting promotions they are running on their website.

Here are the extensions they offer for people registering new domains (and how much they cost):

.com, co.ke, .org, .net, .o.ke, .ac.ke, .ne.ke, .sc.ke, .go.ke, .mobi.ke, .info.ke, .me.ke, .info, and .biz usually cost KES 1,000 but are currently available for KSh 890 only!

Other extensions include .me (at KSh 2,400), .co (KSh 2,500), .co.za targeting individuals and businesses living or operating in South Africa at Ksh 2,000, .mobi (KSh 2000), .us targeting persons in United Sates of America at KSh 1000, .cc (KSh 1,800), .tv (KSh 3000), .de targeting persons in Germany (KSh 1000), .me.uk (KSh 1,500 x 2), .org.uk (KSh 2,000 x 2), .co.uk for persons in or targeting the United Kingdom market (KSh 1,500), .uk.net (KSh 5,000 x 2), .in (at KSh 1000), .es (KSh 1900), .co.ug targeting persons in Uganda (KSh 3500), .it (KSh 2500), .co.tz (KSh 1700), .so (KSh 8500), .co.rw targeting persons in Rwanda (KSh 5000), .ca (Canada: KSh 1500), .ug (Uganda: KES 3,500) and .nl (KSh 1000).

Check current rates here.

Other domain name extensions include:

.limited, .events, .properties, .academy and .foundation each going for 2,700 Kenyan Shillings. Other extensions that cost KSh 1,900 include: .education, .institute, .company, .photography, .tips, .solutions, .website, .directory, .international and .email.

Other extensions you can use when registering your domain name with Kenya Web Experts include: .church (KSh 3,500), .club (KSh 1500), .media (KSh 2900), .services (KSh 2500), .university (KSh 4000), .consulting (KSh 2,500), .restaurant (KSh 4000), .engineering (KSh 4000), .ac (KSh 9500), .business (KSh 2500), .industries (KSh 3500), .clinic (KSh 5000), .enterprises (KSh 3500), .farm (KSh 3500), .guru (KSh 2900), .xyz (KSh 1300), .space (KSh 1000), .ngo (KSh 5000) and .or.ug at 3,500 shillings.

If you have a domain that you want to transfer, their charges per year is KSh 1,000.

[get your own here]

Kenya Website Experts shared hosting plans – a review of features and pricing

Kenyawebexperts.com offers Linux web hosting plans with cPanel and webmail and great up-time reliability

Under this they offer clients the following packages:

  1. Starter hosting which is ideal for small websites with a secure disk space of 30 GB, 300 GB in bandwidth (web traffic) to get you started – all at a yearly price of KSh 2,100.
  2. Standard hosting is suited for a wide range of websites with 40 GB secure disk space, 400 GB bandwidth and costs KSh 4,100 a year.
  3. Bronze hosting, a high-performance plan for busy sites, with 50 GB secure disk space, 500 GB bandwidth and a cost of 7,100 a year.
  4. Gold hosting plan comes with – as the hosting company puts it – unlimited disk space and bandwidth – all at a price of 14,100 a year.

Learn more about the hosting plans above and any current offers here.

The Bronze and Gold shared hosting plans come with secure SSL certificate unlike the Starter and Standard plans.

You are allowed to create unlimited subdomains, databases and email accounts in all the plans. The four plans come with a free Softaculous script installer which is available free in the control panel dashboard, cPanel.

The plans also come with reliable support (via phone and email), 30 day money back guarantee (they refund your money if you are not satisfied with their hosting service or support), backups, autoresponders, POP 3, spam filtering, email virus scanning, PHP 5, web statistics, DNS management, online file manager and the many free software like WordPress, Joomla, Opencart, Drupal, phpBB, OSClass, among others, that you can install with Softaculous whenever you login to cPanel – which you can easily access from your desktop computer, laptop, tablet or phone.

Once you make payment for a plan of your choice and make payment, Kenya Web Experts creates your account instantly making it easy for you start working on your website or blog immediately – upload files, change designs, install a script or create emails for the various employees and departments in your company.

[learn more on their site]

Kenya Web Experts Windows web hosting

The hosting company also has four plans under this. They include:

  1. Starter Windows web hosting plan with secure disk space of 5 GB, 50 GB bandwidth at a cost of 5,100 a year.
  2. Standard plan with 10 GB secure disk space, 100 GB bandwidth priced at 6,100 Kenyan Shillings a year.
  3. Bronze, an advanced Windows web hosting plan with 20 GB secure disk space, 200 GB bandwidth at a cost of KSh 7100 a year.
  4. Gold, a professional Windows hosting package that goes for 10,100 shillings a year with – as the company puts it – unlimited bandwidth and disk space.

All the Windows hosting plans above come with unlimited FTP accounts, MySQL databases, email accounts creation and subdomains.

They also come with: reliable servers (99.99% uptime), reliable support, 30 day money back guarantee, easy online access using the Plesk control panel, Horde email (unlimited in both Bronze and Gold), phpMyAdmin, ASP .NET v2 and v4, PHP, autoresponders, email auto responders, website stats, WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and other free scripts.

[more information]

Kenya Website Experts reseller services (domain and hosting)

The company offers reseller hosting for individuals who want to start their own web hosting business.

Besides that, as a domain registrar, they also offer wholesale domain prices to resellers who can quickly integrate their domain reselling service via API to scripts like WHMCS (which comes free with their reseller web hosting packages).

Under their domain reseller service –

… you can usually get domains at discounted prices saving big – sometimes even more than 100 shillings per purchase (e.g. you can get a domain that normally sells at KSh 1000 for 900 shillings or less).

At the moment you can, as a domain reseller, get .com, .co.ke, .net, .org, .info, .or.ke, .ne.ke, .ac.ke, .go.ke, .mobi.ke and .biz at KSh 890 only.

.me and .co goes for KSh 2400 each while .mobi costs KSh 1900.

.us, .de, and .in costs KSh 900 each while .me.uk goes for KSh 1400 a year and has to be registered for at least two years.

.co.uk and .org.uk each costs 1800 shillings (each has to be registered for a minimum of 2 years).

[learn more]

Kenya Web Experts reseller hosting plans and pricing

This company provides one of the best reseller hosting services in Kenya, with all their reseller plans coming with a free WHMCS billing software to make managing your hosting business and clients easy.

The three plans include:

  1. Starter – a perfect reseller hosting plan for beginners with 50 GB secure disk space, 100 GB bandwidth and a monthly price of 2,900 Kenyan Shillings.
  2. Standard – a reliable low cost reseller hosting plan with 100 GB secure disk space, 2,000 GB bandwidth at a cost of KSh 4400 a month.
  3. Bronze – an advanced reseller hosting package with 200 GB secure disk space, 4,000 GB bandwidth priced at KSh 6,400 a month.

Learn more about them here.

All the reseller plans come with 99.9% uptime, unlimited creation of subdomains, cPanel accounts, WHMCS (Web Host Manager Complete Solution – which provides hosting and domain management, recurring billing and integrated support), WHM (Web Host Manager), Softaculous, private nameservers, support, ability to create user accounts and sell domains and you customers receive features listed in the shared hosting plans above like MySQL databases, webmail, online file manager, cPanel, Softaculous script installer making it easy for them to install software like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Magento, OpenCart, Zen Cart, phpBB etc.

If you want more control with your web server, you can use the hosting company’s dedicated servers or VPS (virtual private servers) services.

Your frequently asked hosting questions answered by 2 web hosting companies in Kenya.

Kenya Web Experts VPS Servers plans, features and prices

The VPS packages (unmanaged) include:

  1. Starter VPS – which is perfect for beginners. It costs Kenya Shillings 9,900 a month and includes the following features: 2 GB RAM, 35 GB disk space, one 3.3 GHz CPU, CentOS 6 and speed of 256 Kbps.
  2. Standard VPS, a reliable low-cost VPS hosting plan that goes for a monthly fee of 11,500 and comes with 4 GB RAM, 115 GB disk space, 1 3.3 GHz CPU, CentOS 6 and speed of 256 Kbps.
  3. Bronze VPS – an advanced VPS hosting package priced at 19,000 a month with the following included in the package: 4 GB RAM, 285 disk space, 2 CPUs of 3.3 GHz each, CentOS 6 and 256 Kbps speed.
[learn more about their VPS servers]

The VPS servers are physically located in Kenya and the IP’s geolocation shows Kenya and Google recognizes the server IP address as located in Kenya.

All the servers come with VMware visualization software, are reliable and have full root access and you’re able to install advanced software and customize virtually anything.

Kenya Web Experts dedicated Servers plans, features and prices

If you want more resources, beyond the limitations of those provided by the shared hosting plans above (higher level speed, security and uptime), Kenya Web Experts dedicated server managed solution is what you should go for.

Their dedicated servers are provisioned, secured and typically delivered with 24 hours of purchase.

Their dedicated servers include:

  1. Dedicated 1 – a server plan perfect for beginners at Kenya Shillings 19,000 a month. It comes with 4 GB RAM, 1 TB disk space and 5 TB bandwidth.
  2. Dedicated 2 – a reliable low cost server plan with 8 GB RAM, 1 TB disk space and 10 TB bandwidth that goes for 22,000 shillings monthly.
  3. Dedicated 3 – an advanced dedicated server package with 16 GB RAM, 1 TB disk space and 15 TB bandwidth. This plan goes for 27,000 shillings a month.

All the plans come with server setup and cPanel installation.

[more information]

Kenya Web Experts SSL certificates features and prices 2019

If you want more security for your blog, website or online business and keep your customers data and transactions (logins, connections, personal and financial data) safe by encrypting anything sent to your server you can buy an SSL certificate from Kenya Website Experts – increasing the level of security on your site (and increasing customers confidence by showing https:// in your URLs).

SSL is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. And KenyaWebExperts offers, for sale and installation, the following SSL certificates.

  1. Comodo Domain Validation SSL is a perfect secure sockets layer for beginners which goes for Kenya Shillings 5,000 a year. This can be used on a single domain and comes with domain validation.
  2. Comodo Company Validation SSL, a reliable low-cost certificate used on a single domain, comes with company validation and costs 9,000 annually.
  3. Comodo UCC SSL Certificates for Microsoft Exchange. Comes with full subject alternative name (SAN), 128/256 bit encryption and costs KSh 30,000 a year.

All the SSL certificates are trusted by 99.9% of web browsers, have site seal and come with industry leading support.

This hosting also provides web design for different types of websites, blogs and e-commerce sites for individuals and businesses. Check their rates here.

Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) leakage in 2015 – papers on the internet – easy cheating?

The Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education 2015 is going on. And students in secondary schools in different parts of Kenya are sitting for their papers, doing their best to, hopefully, get top scores come 2016 when the KCSE results are announced.

That is if their results don’t get cancelled by KNEC (Kenya National Examinations Council) for exam malpractice.

Some would argue that social media and cheap access to the internet (well students still sneak phones, modems and tablets to school) is making cheating in the national exams even easier compared to the years 2014, 2013…

Add that to the prolonged teachers strike that made some students lazy (not working to their full capacity to get ready for the examinations), the cheating is probably going to continue till the third term ends – and KCSE is over.

However much the Education Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Jacob Kaimenyi isn’t ready for the truth that there is lots of evidence to show that a lot of papers have been leaked on the internet as reports on some television stations have shown, more students are going to be tempted to look for the papers before they actually sit the exams.

Why?

Everyone (not every student, but you get the point) wants an advantage.

An edge over the thousands of other students who registered for the form four national examinations this year.

Everyone wants a  place to look.

A short cut.

An easier way to get the As – and good spots in the few ‘cool’ universities in Kenya.

It’s not like students haven’t been cheating in the years before.

So, many are going to do their best to escape the Ds, Es and weak Cs if they can.

For everyone wants to look good on paper – the result slips and certificates.

At least for now, most students think this is something important they should do.

To show everyone, including their parents and guardians, how hard they have been working in school.

And few will listen if you tell them not to look for the leaked papers and just face the exams without the ‘outside help’.

Peer pressure, rife as it is in many schools, is going to drive many schools (teachers and students) to look for the questions beforehand.

Many, now, can almost see themselves in the front pages of newspapers next year!

Is it wrong? That’s a question every student tempted to cheat (or cheating already) should ask themselves?

Should KNEC cancel this year’s KCSE and release new papers that haven’t been leaked yet? This is a tricky one! For the persons who have leaked the papers doing rounds in social media already could just do the same to any paper KNEC decides to put out.

How can Safaricom stay ahead of Airtel Kenya, Orange Kenya (Telkom Kenya) and Yu

For starters, we all know that Safaricom is the mobile phone service provider with more subscribers than any other mobile phone service provider in Kenya.

I’m writing this post, not only to show you how Safaricom can stay further ahead of the others.

I also want you to learn a thing or two that may help you in taking your business, company or organization to the next level – better service, innovations, positive impact on people’s lives, and of course, more profits.

Let’s take a look at the competition among the telcos in Kenya

I’ve always liked Safaricom for one thing – ‘honesty’.How can Safaricom stay ahead of Airtel Kenya, Orange Kenya (Telkom Kenya) and Yu

Whenever they introduce a new tariff, they’ll let you know whether it’s permanent or just a two-month offer.

This is unlike some of the players who say a tariff is permanent only later to re-appear on TV screens (and newspapers) saying it was just an offer.

Though Safaricom has been accused of a lot of things – some of which I’m not going to mention here, I still respect their brutal honesty, when CEO Bob Collymore says: I don’t want to lower call rates to a shilling. I don’t want to lay off people...

Very cheap call rates can easily result into players giving poor services to Kenyan consumers.

Safaricom therefore, has to build more trust. Trust matters a lot. It’s not good when consumers trust no more a company’s position on a particular matter.

And here they have to deal with two things: the consumers want for cheaper call rates vs charging enough to uphold the quality they offer phone users while remaining profitable.

M-Pesa versus Airtel Money, yuCash and Orange Money

Yes, here again Safaricom is ahead of the pack.

But how can it go further?

Safaricom has to find a way to reduce the number of occasions that its M-Pesa services get delayed. Safaricom subscribers hate it when they hear M-Pesa is down – especially when they are expecting some money in order to get a business deal sealed or in cases of emergency.

There was a time I tried to update my M-Pesa menu, thinking there might be some updates.

My Kenya shillings 20 was deducted from my M-PESA account yet there were no updates available.

It was like going to a shop, thinking there was bread, only for the shopkeeper to take my money in return for no bread – nothing.

Subscribers hate it when the money they’ve worked so hard for is snatched from them without any explanation. I hope this has stopped, but if it hasn’t, it should forthwith.

And this doesn’t have to apply only to M-PESA but to all the services they offer consumers in Kenya (and those who carry their lines to other countries when travelling).

M-Pesa is popular and has millions of Kenyans and non-Kenyans using M-Pesa services on a daily basis. Some of them sometimes send money to wrong numbers unknowingly. They then try to call the recipient’s number. But you know the story. Some receive the money, then rush to withdraw it or switch off their phones.

The problem is the sender sometimes doesn’t know what to do next (especially if they are in neighbouring countries and can’t call 234 for help). And even if one is in Kenya, it might take several minutes before a subscriber finally gets to talk to a customer care representative.

One time this happened to a friend. He didn’t know what to do after sending a whopping 23,000 Kenya shillings from his M-PESA account to a wrong number. He didn’t know what to do.

We were students deep down in Fort Portal, Uganda. I couldn’t offer any help, so I suggested we try searching for information on safaricom.co.ke – yes we did find some info on what to do when you send money to a wrong number.

That didn’t help much.

Fortunately, he got help when he called one of his friends who told him to call +254722002234. He reached M-Pesa customer care and after sometime his money was back in his M-PESA account.

Most Safaricom subscribers who use M-Pesa don’t have a clue on what to do when they send money to a wrong number. And I haven’t seen this info shared on newspapers or TVs a reasonable number of times though they haven’t done a bad job here.

I hope Safaricom will do that, given that some M-Pesa users live far from Safaricom customer care centers and retail shops where one can ‘easily get help’.

The M-Pesa menu is user-friendly but Safaricom should find more ways to make it easier to use and people will love M-Pesa even more.

I also think that Safaricom’s M-Pesa transaction charges are high compared to that of the other mobile phone service providers in Kenya.

If Safaricom can find ways to lower them without compromising on quality, that may be an added advantage…but will they with the dwindling profits?

Of course, they have revised their rates from time to time to the benefit of mobile money users in Kenya. That’s commendable. But there, always, is more to be done.

When I compare response time whenever I call customer care service lines of the different mobile phone operators in Kenya, I think Orange’s the best.

You throw questions and you get answers (I only hate it when they take days to activate  a desktop for internet services)…may be it’s because they have a few subscribers…

I know Safaricom has many subscribers, but they should make things easier for their subscribers whenever they call 100 or 234 (customer care lines).

Here’s how to do it: Train your employees to answer subscribers’ questions fast…when giving help or advice without treating the customer as less of a king.

There was a time I changed (swapped) my green Safaricom SIM card to the red ones (the process took under three minutes – thumbs up Safaricom) but my M-Pesa account wasn’t functioning.

It prompted me to ACTIVATE (Wezesha) my account. I had to enter my ID number (I used my passport to register for M-Pesa).

I keyed in my passport number, including the letter which normally precede the six numbers in Kenyan passports. That didn’t work. I tried my national ID number. It didn’t work either.

I visited an M-Pesa agent for help, guy had no clue.

One night (after several attempts to reach 100 and 234) I talked to two customer care agents who didn’t offer much help.

My M-Pesa account started functioning again only after another customer care agent told me to omit the letter ‘A’ which formed part of my passport number when keying my passport number.

That worked!

I wonder how much time and resources could be saved (and how many more Safaricom subscribers could get help) if the first customer care agent I talked to gave me the appropriate advice pronto.

This problem is not a madness only here at Safaricom. The other mobile phone service providers too, suffer from this fever – where the first customer care agent you talk to isn’t able to offer the help a user needs.

Many mobile phone subscribers don’t like it when a customer care agent is clueless, beating around the bush or showing signs of aggressiveness or uttering abbreviations or acronyms they can’t clearly explain to a customer who wants to know, right away.

Equip your customer care team with the right info. Let them have the info customers need on their fingertips (or tongue-tips).

Train them on ways to pass info in thirty seconds instead of doing the same in one long boring minute.

Sometimes when Safaricom customer care lines are busy, subscribers waste their time following the voice prompts and pressing their phone keys only to be told, ‘All our customer care agents are busy at the moment. Please try again later. Goodbye.’ And that’s around six minutes wasted. Try calling 5 times – and you can find that you have thrown away 30 good minutes.

Safaricom should find a way to curb frustration that subscribers face in such circumstances.

I have heard talks of M-PesAPI, iPay, Pesapal etc. Safaricom should be closer to developers than ever before.

Many Kenyans are embracing online shops, shopping for goods or services online then paying using M-Pesa, Airtel Money, Yu Cash and Orange Money.

Safaricom should work with bright Kenyan developers (and developers from elsewhere) to add more value to their services – or create new services.

There are millions using M-Pesa, and I see the future of online businesses getting brighter.

Plus, can Safaricom work a deal with Paypal? Many Kenyans have waited for Paypal to find a local partner (or partners) but hey, haven’t we, besides PayPal withdrawal services offered by Equity Bank, waited for too long?

Now that there’s Western Union Mobile (where someone can send money from a Western Union agent location to a Safaricom number – M-Pesa account, from many countries), creating a partnership with Paypal is not impossible – though it is hard, it can be achieved (or may be we will continue to wait for Paypal to find other suitable financial institution to partner with – besides Equity).

What about internet and data issues? So many Kenyan consumers still believe Safaricom data bundles are expensive. Surfing the internet on a mobile phone using a Safaricom SIM card is cheap and fast enough. But many people still consider their USB modems cheap to buy but expensive to maintain.

Safaricom has to find a way to either convince users why they settled on the bundle prices they currently charge for the various data

bundles they offer or find ways to make the bundles affordable to more Safaricom users…increase download and upload speeds.

I enjoy my 10 MB of data on a daily basis whenever I am in Kenya.

It only goes for 8 Kenya shillings.

That’s enough for me to search for any info I want from my Motorola L6 mobile phone.

But when it comes to surfing on a desktop computer or on my Advent netbook, I usually find myself using either Yu or Orange Kenya (Telkom Kenya) services.

And all the talk about 3G (4G)…is it really 3G (4G)…or sometimes the network gets too congested?

Safaricom has to find ways to convince Kenyan consumers to use its broad range of data products. I spend most of my time on the internet…spend a little time calling people – and I believe most Kenyans are going this route, too.

Safaricom should offer more superior products – because I don’t think slashing prices will be of any good if the products aren’t up to user expectation.

I’d go for an expensive but superior product – if it’s something reliable and faster.

And may be it is time Safaricom promoted more local content (song downloads etc) on www.safaricom.com portal.

Safaricom should also increase their network coverage and signal strength in some parts of Kenya. Safaricom should also work on decongesting its network.

Tweak the following services: Okoa Jahazi, Bonga Points, SMS services, ATM withdrawal and enable people to get back/reclaim their money when they sambaza it to a wrong number..

In a few days or weeks we shall look at the relationship between Safaricom and its subscribers and what Safaricom can do to ensure the company and its customers remain together forever.

So you should come back here at Niabusiness.com for the updates.

What did I miss? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comments.

Kenyan mobile phone service providers: Why they differ greatly in subscriber numbers

Some of the players in Kenyan mobile phone sector include Safaricom – the company with the most number of subscribers. The other operators are Airtel Kenya, Orange Kenya (Telkom Kenya) and Yu (which has now been sold).

There are several factors that contribute to the difference in subscriber numbers among Kenya’s mobile phone service providers. These include:

1. When the company was established

Some of the companies that began operating in Kenya before the other companies providing similar services entered the market seem to have an upper hand when it comes to subscriber numbers.

Most people who opted to own a mobile phone years back only had to choose between Safaricom or Kencell (which later became Zain > Airtel).

The pioneers set a firm foundation and have retained lots of loyal customers since.

2. Network coverage

Network coverage also comes in to set the difference.

Most subscribers would opt for an operator with slightly expensive tariffs provided they have a wider network coverage, since subscribers are always on the move and therefore a wide network coverage is a must in order for an operator to retain them.

Or what happens is, most Kenyans have more than one line (SIM card), making it easier to overcome the challenge of network coverage whenever they travel someplace else.

3. Tariff charges

Most subscribers would be easily drawn towards an operator with the ‘most’ affordable tariff rates.

But as evidenced by the millions of Kenyans who chose to be Safaricom’s customers, cheap does not mean more subscribers.

Smart subscribers will always go for affordable but quality services.  Tariff rates goes hand in hand with other factors such as the ones mentioned above.

4. Friends and family preferences

Friends and family preferences also easily influence new users.

For instance, a teen fresh from high school or primary school may for his or her birthday ask for a feature phone, a smartphone or a tablet computer.

The gift in most instances will be brought home complete – A new device, a new SIM card and airtime voucher.

If most people in the family have a Safaricom line, the teenager, fresh from high school, is also likely to get a new Safaricom line.

5. Time for termination of services

Some operators will render a subscriber’s SIM card obsolete after a given period of inactivity, e.g. three or four months after the last recharge.Kenyan mobile phone service providers: Why they differ greatly in subscriber numbers

High school students who are not allowed to carry phones to schools usually prefer the operator with the longest period before their SIM card is rendered inactive.

I truly believe that this point reflects some of the problems Airtel Kenya is experiencing in its fight against Safaricom’s dominance.

They are fighting the company many Kenyans chose – and still choose – (though having different lines from the different operators is a common thing – and some Safaricom customers’ loyalty is only made stronger because of their usage of M-PESA mobile money transfer service) instead of putting more energy in fighting the negative perception people have of them from when it was called KenCell.

6. Other subscribers love a customer care team ready for their questions  any time

And I do mean anytime.

Even in the middle of the night.

They’ll easily fall for an operator with an efficient customer care service.

Though some have learnt to bear with operators whose customer care lines are ever busy. You know who I am talking about here!

7. Other services that may attract subscribers

Further bringing in differences between the telecom operators in Kenya are services like mobile money transfer services such as Safaricom’s M-Pesa, Zain’s Zap (now Airtel Money), Yu Cash and Orange Money.

Subscribers will go for an operator with time saving features enabling them to pay electricity bills from the comfort of their couch instead of sweating in long queues in a Kenya Power and Lighting Company hall waiting for their turn to pay the bills.

Other subscribers also fall for the adverts they see on dailies may be with claims of fast and cheap internet, some just follow the crowd – they go where most Kenyan phone owners dash to.

Others, especially subscribers who own online businesses selling digital products like ebooks, music (MP3, Kenyan music) will go for operators that makes it easy for them to expand their choice of how they receive money for their services.

Like Safaricom’s Lipa na M-PESA partnership with Kopo Kopo, helping Kenyan business owners to make it easy for their customers and clients to pay for products and services using M-PESA, without the need of having to handle a lot of cash or deal with counterfeit money.

Are you with Safaricom, Airtel, Yu or Orange (Telkom Kenya)? What pushed you to your now-favorite service provider? Do share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below.

What Is the government of Kenya doing to prevent Sharperville-style massacres in modern day Kenya?

Sharpeville massacre took place in South Africa. Many protesters were killed by police when they were protesting.

Police killing of several black South Africans

Police opened fire and killed several black South Africans who were fleeing partly because they (the police) feared for their lives and partly because of other reasons known to them.

This incident reminds me of the things I witnessed after the general election that took place in late 2007.

This was the first time I saw police officers beating innocent people who went to Bansi supermarket (in Migori) to do their shopping.

I remember guns blazing.

And I remember seeing some people who were shot rushed to hospital on boda boda (motorbike taxi).

Violence was created.

Violence that became obese in weeks.

Violence that made the ordinary Kenyans and police enemies in a way.

Some would say: Kenyans and police officers haven’t been close to each other from the beginning. People fear them. From way back!

Ever seen how most people react in the presence of police officers? It’s as if a dinosaur has suddenly appeared from thin air – breathing fire, like dragons do.

Are Kenyans comfortable around police officers?

Most Kenyans don’t feel comfortable around police officers.

But crime forces them to seek police officers.

And police officers are on the other hand compelled to perform their duties – law enforcement.

The ordinary Kenyan fear police officers for their violent nature. Something that’s not the case with every officer, but you just know how generalities make even the sanest of people shudder and blow things out of proportion.

Some police officers believe that violence at times makes law enforcement a bit easier. I mean, intimidate an ordinary Kenyan, slap him on both cheeks and things just plain work out.

Problem is, with this method the police officers are prone to consume more lies than ever before.

This has created a big rift between the police officers and the other citizens. And so the two parties try to understand each other. The two parties intimidate each other.

The two parties don’t cooperate with one another as should be the case.

The two parties don’t take their obligations seriously and the two parties violate each other’s rights.

So violence always come to mind when the two parties can’t agree.

After all, when they deal with each other, they come from a position of fear.

There are trust issues to deal with.

Trust issues that at times are deepened even more because of the diversity of people living in Kenya (tribes, politics, class, religion).

A lot of mind reading when both parties try to act all mysterious.

And the struggle of who comes out the winner when all is said and done.

The police use the resources granted to them by the state to perform their duties but sometimes they overstep their boundaries.

And that’s when teargas, batons and guns take over reason.

People get killed and the same script is played almost every year – not only in election times.

What is the government of Kenya doing about police brutality?

But what is the government doing?

What has the government done?

Is the government the reason behind the violence that police officers usually unleash on ordinary citizens?

Yes and no.

The government has the proper resources to train our police officers to respect human rights. It also has the means to compel (or order) the police officers to violate the same rights.

Therefore to prevent Sharperville-style massacres in modern day Kenya, the government needs to think of the people.

To look at their frustrations.

To come up with measures aimed at improving the livelihoods of Kenyans

To train police officers properly and to ensure justice is served whenever an officer involves him/herself in illegal acts.

I think the Kenyan government is already doing all the above, only in small measure.

The government hasn’t done enough yet but this is something it should take seriously, for when the ordinary Kenyans fight with the police, the ordinary Kenyans will triumph but so many lives will be lost.

And that’s what we don’t want – massacres.

We don’t want massacres.

The government, therefore, has to take this initiative seriously.

Educating the ordinary citizen on how they can address their issues without resorting to violence can also help a lot but this doesn’t work if the government doesn’t listen to what Kenyan families have to say.

This is the way to prevent sharperville-style massacres – training the police properly and educating every citizen the right way.

Kenya digital migration: TV stations’ analogue signals switched off

As per the events in recent days where the analogue signals of four TV stations (NTV Kenya, KTN, Citizen TV and QTV) were switched off, it is no question that the Kenyan government wishes the migration from analogue to digital would have been completed and going on as it planned.

But it is not. Things are not going as planned and no one knows (yet) the new day when the four TV stations will be back on air broadcasting to the public.

The row between the four stations owned by individuals in the private sector and the government of Kenya raises some serious issues.

Do Kenyans really need the four popular television channels?

There are many comments I have read on different social networks, and they go something like this: most Kenyans (at least the ones with access to these sites – I guess the access Kenyans have to TV is higher compared to the internet) actually feel like they don’t need the four. Why? They have varied reasons:

  • the four only fill the air with politics and soap operas
  • they don’t watch that much TV anyway
  • they can access news from TV stations like K24 or the government owned KBC Channel One
  • they have bought, or plan to buy Bamba TV set top box (which requires no monthly subscriptions but gives viewers access to a wide variety of channels) or pay TV decoders from Gotv, DStv, Zuku, Azam TV or Startimes and pay monthly subscription fees. After all the decoders give them access to more channels they didn’t have access to before. So, they have no qualms with parting with a few hundred or thousands of shillings every month

Some of the ads aired on the TV stations whose analogue signals have been switched off (to not go with the pay TV providers and stick with them until they bring their own set top boxes) angered some Kenyans that they decided to not care about whether they had access to the four or not.

But the four can’t be dismissed like that. You know it.

No one knows about tomorrow. The four might be useful and helpful the next day, month, year airing the plights of Kenyans. You never know.

There is always this love-hate relationship with most things in our lives. Even the people who scream loud about how they don’t need NTV Kenya, Citizen TV, KTN and QTV, don’t love themselves the same way every single day of their lives.

Sometimes you even feel like you are a disappointment to your own self. Tell me, even some of the people you love hanging with and giving your time, there are times when you resent them, no?

I am not saying this to defend the four stations. This is a fact of life. No one knows about tomorrow. So, we shouldn’t let emotions drive us crazy because even with the digital migration, we don’t really know how things will pan out.

Are Kenyans educated enough to differentiate between pay TV decoders and free to air set top boxes?

Well they can ask the sellers and distributors questions that help them make the right decision, right?

But there is bound to be confusion and resentment. And even if everyone is left to deal with their own issues, in the mean time, the government should actively educate Kenyans on the difference between the two, the pros and cons and the cost of the variety of decoders in the market right now.

They can do this on radios and newspapers, especially right now that Kenyans have lots of questions for the government and four TV stations.

Are Kenyan private investors in the media industry, especially TV, intimidated by foreign investors?

That seems to be the case. But then which industry in Kenya isn’t intimidated by investors coming from other countries.

Even those that smile and say how warmly they are open to competition from foreign entities, say that with caution. No one wants his launch eaten by another.

The private sector is fine with capitalism and is open to competition but there are always buts especially if the top regulators, like the Communications Authority of Kenya, seems to listen to their plight but at the same time seem like it isn’t doing much listening.

Are Kenyans ready for this or the government is too ambitious? Is the government behaving like a bully?

Most of the talk is between government and the four and it looks like the citizens aren’t getting enough attention as the two does.

The government is for the people and the people are always divided in opinion. But in this case, some Kenyans feel like the governments needs to go through this process gently.

They feel as if the government is rushing things and not paying much attention to their rights to access to information which is enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of Kenya.

But if you look at it from the government’s perspective, they in one way or another, strongly believe that Kenyans like rushing and doing things at the last minute.

So, the rush, the ambition, is but motivation to get people moving towards Vision 2030.

Remember how people dragged their feet when it came to registering their SIM cards with their respective mobile phone service providers awhile ago?

Looking back now, you can say that the government was justified in giving the citizens some motivation by appearing to be in a hurry, right?

The government seemed like a bully. But it got more people to take action (and there are many who will argue that the two changes are not related at all, but I am mentioning this merely to illustrate a point).

Does the media, especially the four, feel intimidated by the government, and has their trust on the government waned?

It may seem so. The four feel as if they are being separated from the people that give them power – their viewers (more viewers = more advertising and higher fees = more advertisers cutting them fat checks = the business they love – which is understandable).

The four feel like the quick move when their viewers aren’t ready with the kind of set top boxes they have in mind (set top boxes from the four television stations) is bad for their business.

And with viewers wandering all over, their loyalty may shift – and the NTV, Citizen, KTN or QTV that used to be their favourites may be replaced by some other station in operation (like the many channels that come with pay TV decoders) or one that is soon airing its programmes to Kenyans in a week, month, two months or three months from now.

But say, the government allows the four to go back broadcasting using the analogue signals as before, some stations that have switched already may see government as flaky and not at all serious about digital migration – after all, all they want is a level playing field so that the stations migrate all at once and no one feels like one or two stations are treated differently from the rest.

Does the government feel that the four stations are trying to set a precedent where they can disrupt government’s schedule?

Yes. And you are right to think what I am thinking right now: the government doesn’t smile over something like this.

It is bad for governance, you know.

They want things to go as they have planned, allowing no one (no matter how big, small or popular) to disrupt their schedule.

But this reminds us of the fact that even government has to contend with headaches once in awhile. It keeps people on their toes, fosters discussion and in the end people come to the table to find a way forward.

Can the four TV channels be allowed to be back on air broadcasting on analogue before migrating at a later date?

This is possible. But there will be people ready to advance reasons why it cannot be done.

As always there are many people hired and ready to make the possible impossible.

Whatever decision the government makes, it remains to be seen if this will be the case as it appears that the set top boxes that the four TV stations want to distribute and let Kenyans buy aren’t already available in the electronic shops and supermarkets near you.

What are your thoughts on this row?

Can Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) results determine your success in life

After a minimum of four years in high school, Kenyan students have to sit for the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education exams – that is for students who study under the 8-4-4 system.

The KCSE results, in most cases determines who gets and who doesn’t get to university, college, polytechnic etc, how fast they get there and how much money they spend to finally get a chance to get a degree, diploma or certificate of their own.

What teachers tell students in high school

Like in other areas of life, high school has teachers that will tell you that you begin failing in life once you get a bad grade in KCSE (a synonym for failing to join university or a prestigious college).

Growing up in a society that still believes so much that one’s success is greatly determined by their academic success, many students cannot do anything but believe what their teachers say.

Whether at home or in school, teachers and parents will always repeat the same thing:

Success in KCSE = A successful life.Can Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) results determine your success in life

Failure in KCSE = A lot of suffering, average life, low pay, misery, misery, misery…

To some extent there is truth to what they say.

However, they should consider that even if they use that tactic to inspire their students into working harder, their tone and choice of words sometimes help them achieve the exact opposite.

That’s why you’ll find more students who consider themselves failures even before they sit their national examination.

And that’s perhaps why cheating in the national examination is so an attractive option to thousands of students. It is also the reason why many schools go to great lengths to get examination papers before the official examination dates.

All this just proves how our society is so afraid of academic failures – for the simple fact that it is one of the major highways that lead to miserable, poverty-filled life.

Can KCSE really determine how successful you become after high school?

Yes and no.

Yes because if you are a person who isn’t ready to nurture their talent and dedicate time to teach themselves new things related to their talent, you’ll only have to depend on a good grade to get a better pay to support yourself in life in the years to come.

I am in no way insinuating that:

  • Students who don’t nurture their talents now can’t ever start doing it at any time they so choose.
  • Students should not work hard towards attaining academic excellence because they have great talent they are working on. I know how important education (and the certificate at the end of secondary school education) is to many Kenyans. Plus, there are a ton of other things that lead to a successful life that can be learned by anyone, outside the classroom.

No, because life is greater than the results you get at the end of the four year course.

Students who understand this are able to do great things even after attaining low KCSE grades.

You can get back to high school and re-sit the national examination. You can upgrade individual subjects in various colleges, universities and other institutions offering higher education (usually takes under 6 months). You can start with a certificate or diploma and move up the ladder.

Do you know how to get what you want in life?

As long as you know what you want to do with your life, the next thing you’ll think about is:

How do I get there?

Now, students will do different things here. Simply because student A is not student B and student C may not have the same goals as student A or B.

I don’t know what you want in life or how you want to get there but I am sure you’ll be glad to read more articles on this site to help you in your quest to become a better person and lead a successful life regardless of what transpired in your past.

Arm yourself with the necessary tools that will help you stop thinking that your life’s success is pegged on the results you get after sitting your KCSE. If you are still in high school, remember that hard work, love (of God) and dedication will take you places.

There is no short cut to hard work.

There is no better day to start working towards building a successful life than today. If you say I’ll start tomorrow chances are that you’ll say the same thing when tomorrow comes.

So get to work.

Get to know yourself more.

Build something great. For example, a business or blog.

Always remember that you are special and capable and that the best way to start building the foundation for a successful life is to know who you are, know where you are now, where you have been, where you want to be, and to love yourself and get to work setting and achieving goals.

If you have any experiences you want to share or questions you’d like to ask, the comments section is all yours.

10 questions students should ask themselves after checking their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education results

I remember the things I did after receiving my KCSE results sometime in 2008 very well. Didn’t do very well in math but I never thought about repeating form four.10 questions students should ask themselves after checking their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education results

There could be so many reasons I could give to explain why I didn’t do well in math, but I won’t; simply because a few excuses would sip in the basket of reason.

Do you remember the things you were hoping to do before the KCSE results were released?  Do you still want to do them?

It is a very good thing to remember all the plans and goals you had just before you received the results from Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC).

All those plans may be useful in building a good life right after you get to know your grades.

After you get your results

This is usually a really tough time for so many students. Parents, friends and family expectations can keep hearts beating faster the moment KNEC head and the Minister of Education appears on TV to announce the results.

What should you do then during such times?

Don’t do something before giving it much thought. Don’t let your KCSE grades determine the kind of life you’ll have from today onwards. What matters most is what you’ll be doing from now onwards.

A student’s immediate reaction, after getting their grades, may lead them to say things like:

1. What will my parents or guardians think?

Normally they’ll expect grades higher than the ones you got during (term I, II, III and mock) your fourth year in High School. It is a good thing to put a lot of effort to get decent results. However, when you fail to get the grades they expected, don’t let yourself resort to self-pity, anger, isolation or something that won’t add value to your life.

Life has to go on. If they are okay with your results, it is time to put in more effort and work harder towards taking charge of your life. Respect your parents or guardians. Think about what you want to do in life and share this with them. That’s perhaps the easiest way to know what they think about you and your grades.

2. My grades aren’t good enough. May be the people who marked my papers weren’t fair. Yes?

Many students wouldn’t want to believe that the person who marked their paper was fair. So the question is, ‘Should you do the same?’

You may be right to believe that the markers weren’t fair. However, don’t get sucked into blaming others. That won’t help you much. Think along the lines of ‘What should I be doing with my life…now?’ even if your grades don’t please you one bit.

If your grades can’t get you the course you always dreamed of, it is time to have a discussion with your parents or guardians. You can then decide to start with a certificate or diploma course and move up the ladder. Some people may also consider upgrading their grades on individual subjects.

Don’t forget to check whether the results you received via your phone or computer tally with the ones received by your school. If still in doubt, check with your school and KNEC.

3. This is good. Now I know I’ll be able to pursue my dream course at university, right?

Congratulations! Just don’t get lost in the excitement. Think of the things that awaits you. You still have a long way to go. So keep working hard and learn more ways to replicate the success you had after four (or more) years in High School.

I have to say this again: congratulations!

4. Will these grades get me the course I wanted to pursue in university?

The best way to be in the know is to visit websites of various institutions of higher learning inside and outside Kenya. They always have a list of courses they offer and the requirements that must be met if one is to pursue a particular course.

You can also check with your teachers or students who are already in university.

5. Should I go back to school and re-sit the national examinations?

This option should be considered if you really know what you are doing. There are students who went back to re-sit Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education examinations and emerged with better grades.

However, some came out of high school with grades lower than the ones they had before.

Before you go back, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Why should I go back?
  2. Can I get what I want only by going back to school?
  3. What alternatives do I have to re-sitting KCSE exams?

Should I go to Uganda to pursue my A-level (form five and six) course?

Again this is a decision you should make after having a discussion with your parents or guardians. If you have to go for A-levels in Uganda, make the decision. Don’t let someone impose their decision on you concerning which course to pursue in university or college – that’s if you don’t want to regret about lost time and opportunities a few years from now.

Be the person who knows when to say no.

6. Will my parents let me pursue my preferred course now that I’ve got my grades?

Short answer: There’s a high likelihood that you won’t enjoy pursuing a course forced on you. You may even drop out before you complete the course.

So you better go for the course that you want. Go for a course that takes into consideration all the talents you have. Go for a course that leads to a career you’ll still enjoy doing 30 or 50 years from now.

Don’t pursue a course just to please your parents. Think about the example you’ll set in the family. Are you locking your siblings in the same trap? Are you really thinking about how your life will be a decade or two from now?

7. What will my teachers think of me when I go back to school to get my KCSE results slip?

Don’t worry about that. Be humble. Think of greater things. Get your slip and go home.

8. Will I be eligible for Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) loans?

Check with HELB, your teachers or the nearest institution of higher learning.

9. Should I join university right away or wait a little?

Two questions:

Why would you wait if you can go in now? It is not a crime.

Why would you rush in if you know you are making a wrong move?

Again, you should share with your parents or guardians. Then make a move.

10. What will I be doing now that I am spending a lot of time at home?

All I can say is:

  • Read this post: Can your KCSE results determine your success in life and see why my answer to this question is yes and no.
  • Don’t let TV and movies take charge of your life.
  • Use your money wisely. Instead of investing in expensive gadgets, why not experiment with online freelancing and entrepreneurship? You may like the experience even if your first venture flops.
  • Stay away from drugs.
  • Read a lot of good books and articles. There are a ton of books and ebooks you can buy and some which you can get for free from Amazon Kindle store, Project Gutenberg and so many websites out there – including Niabusiness.com.
  • Start a blog. You could be making your pocket money (or fees) from it if you work so hard at it. But mainly start one to connect with others, share your knowledge and lend a hand whenever you can.
  • Be a wise person and honour your parents.
  • If you are in a relationship, keep away from sex (protected or not) and stick to one guy (if you are a lady) and one lady (if you are a guy). It could be one of the best decisions you ever make. And people’s boyfriends, girlfriends, wives and husbands – stay away from them.
  • Tell your parents what you want to do with your life, and if it is a good thing, think twice before you let them make a decision for you.
  • Surround yourself with good friends and try your best not to flirt with danger. Good friends please – even if they are less than five, instead of hundreds of so-called friends who don’t really give a damn about you.
  • Learn to say no and let your no be a no. Please smile, and promise me that you’ll do this.

What are your plans now that you’ve got your KCSE results?