How to Create an Online Magazine

Опубликовал Admin
24-09-2016, 00:15
3 593
Although magazines have traditionally been published in print format, more and more magazines (of every genre) are developing an online presence. As a result of advances in technology, online reading is a growing trend, and readers have constant access to newspapers, books, and magazines. With an entrepreneurial spirit and a creative vision, you can create your own online magazine.

Planning the Specifics of your Magazine

  1. Decide what kind of magazine you want to publish. All types and genres of magazines can be published online, from international news magazines to small literary reviews. Before you create any online content, you need to nail down a specific plan for your magazine. Ask yourself:
    • What topics and type of content will your magazine focus on?
    • How large of a staff will your magazine have?
    • Will you hire copywriters or freelance writers, or will you serve as the magazine’s editor and review submitted work?
  2. Reach out to established magazines for advice. A polite email to the editor of a small magazine—especially if it’s similar to your planned magazine—could result in an informative conversation which will help you establish your magazine.
    • Look around online—through Google and Facebook—to find similar magazines and contact them. Ask specific questions, such as:
    • “How many staff members do you employ?”
    • “How did you market your magazine to attract new readers/subscribers?”
    • “How long did it take you to start the magazine?”
    • “What are some common mistakes that I can avoid when starting my online magazine?”
  3. Establish a budget. Determine how much money you will need to start and maintain your magazine. Also consider how your magazine will generate financial income.
    • Keep in mind that many online magazines can be started and initially maintained for free, even if they subsequently need a small budget.
    • When forecasting your magazine, consider your rate of return, note the current economy, and allocate money for advertising.
    • Eventually, you may need to establish a magazine-dedicated savings account for any unforeseeable events.
    • In determining your staff budgetary needs, consider freelance writers, interns, and volunteers. However, it is unlikely that you will have all (or any) of these positions filled upon the launch of your magazine.
  4. Create a business plan. Sit down and formulate a strategy to publish the magazine. Eventually, you may want the magazine to generate an income. Your business plan should include financial goals for the magazine, and include how you plan to fund various expenses.
    • For example, the magazine's mission, the type of content and how you plan to get and keep subscribers.
    • In developing your marketing strategy, note your target audience, how often the magazine will be published, and research the competition.
    • Once the magazine is up and running, use social network sites to promote your online magazine and specific articles.
  5. Reach out to local businesses about advertising. If your magazine will not have financial income through online subscriptions or generate income by charging for submissions, it may need to sell advertising space on the website.
    • Ask business in your area if they have advertised in the past, which parts of the experience were successful, and which parts failed.
    • Explain how advertising on your magazine’s webpage will benefit the business (more customers, etc.), and invite them to buy advertising space.
    • Also reach out to online-only businesses, as these depend on website-based advertising.

Setting up Your Magazine’s Website and Design

  1. Choose a name for the magazine. Try selecting a name that will draw customers to explore the magazine, and that also describes the magazine content.
    • Brainstorm a list of potential magazine names—then check online and make sure none of them have already been taken.
  2. Trademark your title to protect the name. Once you have selected a name for the magazine, research the availability online—there are a number of internet-based websites that help you search registered domain names.
    • If the name is available, register the name. This will prevent other magazines from using the name.
  3. Design your magazine website layout and logo. You should display your magazine’s title and logo (if you have one) in a way that is succinct will catch the eye of your readers.
    • Hire a professional if you’re not comfortable designing or coding the website yourself. You should retain full creative control over the design of your online magazine.
    • For ideas and inspiration, look at the print magazines in a large bookstore, or browse the layouts of online magazines you enjoy reading.
  4. Code your website. This is the point at which you figuratively “build” the magazine’s website. Consider how you want the magazine to catch a reader’s eye, where you want the content to appear, and how many
    • As with the layout and logo design, if you are not experienced coder, consider hiring someone with the expertise to deliver a professional result.
    • There are also a number of sites that allow you to build a website with minimal coding knowledge, such as

Building an Audience and Creating Content

  1. Build up an audience for your magazine. In business terms, you will need to market your magazine in person and online, in order to attract new readership. Consider using one or more of these means to build up an audience:
    • To generate your audience, look for an already existing online community that has an interest in same topic your magazine covers. Send work to that community (e.g., through a forum post) and consider their input on your content.
    • Make business cards and pass them out in person. Prominently feature your magazine’s URL, and pass these cards out to everyone you know.
    • Use social media—reach out to friends and friends of friends on Facebook.
    • Create a subscription link on the web page. This will allow your readers to receive updates and information about your magazine.
    • Although online magazines are usually website-based, consider providing some of the magazine content via email subscription. Readers with busy schedules may find your magazine more accessible if its contents (or at least links to online content) are delivered directly to their inbox.
  2. Email potential audience members. This could include everyone in your contacts list! You can use email service to get subscriptions and remind customers when new issues are available.
    • Don’t make yourself a nuisance, but an email or two asking friends and family to subscribe to your magazine could dramatically increase your readers.
  3. Outline the plan for online magazine content. Brainstorm topics you want to include in the magazine, and consider what types of content you plan to include. For example, if your niche is food or travel, choose related topics and interviews with experts in those fields.
    • Develop a table of contents for the first issue; this will let your readers know what the magazine issue entails. Keep articles short, communicative and to the point.
    • Write headlines using keywords so that readers can find your magazine.
    • Tailor your content to your audience. Once you’ve started publishing regularly, take a look and see which content has been viewed the most. Use that information to create new content that is similar to your most popular published work, and to move away from less-popular topics. This strategy will increase both the size and loyalty of your audience.
  4. Start publishing content. No magazine is truly “up and running” until it has begun to publish content online. The urgency of generating content will vary, based on how often your magazine publishes. If you plan to only have a quarterly magazine, you will not need to generate content as quickly as if you plan to publish monthly. There are three common ways to obtain content for your magazine:
    • Write your own content. If your magazine will not have a staff to begin with (which is pretty common), you may need to write every article yourself.
    • Hire a staff to write your magazine content. If you have a budget that can accommodate paying staff members, start by bringing on board one or two writers who share your passion for the topic of your magazine.
    • Gather content from online submitters. If you plan on serving as the editor for your magazine (e.g., for a literary journal), you will need to start gathering content from writers online. For example, is a common choice, which allows users to send submissions to your magazine.
  5. Include visual and audio content as appropriate. Since your magazine will be web-based, you’ll be able to host video and audio content, whether it has been generated by your magazine’s contributors or you have created it yourself.
    • The coding for this should be relatively simple; in many online platforms, you can essentially copy and paste a video or audio file.
    • Always make sure that the content you are hosting has no previous copyright. This won’t be an issue if you’ve created it yourself, but if you’re receiving work from contributors, confirm that they created it themselves and have not “borrowed” the work from another source.
    • If content is already copyrighted but you would still like to post it on your website, contact the copyright holder and ask permission to reproduce their copyrighted work.


  • WhoisNet allows you to search deleted domains.
  • An online magazine will have a lower startup cost than would a print magazine.


  • All registered domain names are required by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to submit personal contact information to the WHOIS database.
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