In my two years of blogging, I’ve been approached multiple times for blogging advice or more specifically, how to start a blog. I LOVE when people ask me about blogging. Blogging is not only a great outlet for self expression and helping others with your expertise, but it’s an efficient way to make passive income!
Many have created a side hustle that contributes significantly for themselves and their family. A good chunk have made blogging a full-time career. The possibilities for making money with blogging are endless. I know what you’re feeling – the itch to blog is SO real. The only thing is: you’re not sure how to get started.
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Start Blogging in 30 Minutes or Less
Step 1: Define Your Niche
What is your blog about? What will your writing be centered around? The first question to answer is this: what drives you in life? What are you passionate about? Is it cooking? Fitness? Home Décor? Motherhood? Beauty & Style? Your niche is the heart of your blog, so make sure to choose a topic you’re passionate about! This first step is all about brainstorming your BIG ideas!
One of my favorite quotes (and one that I keep in mind when helping others start their blog) is, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life!”
Step 2: Brainstorm Ideas for a Domain Name
Your domain name is the title of your blog, website URL and overall brand.
This step can be hard, but I would encourage you to give it serious thought. Once you determine and create your domain, it’s difficult to change it later on down the road so make sure it’s one you really really like!
Choose a domain that adequately fits your writing AND the envision you have for your brand. You can get a FREE domain for your first year of blogging when you sign up for BlueHost. They make the whole process incredibly easy for new bloggers.
Tips for choosing a domain name
Picking a domain name is easier said, than done. (Your domain is www.YOURBLOGNAME.com). Now that you’re ready to choose a domain name, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Keep it short and sweet. Shorter domain names are perceived as less clutter for your readers. Short and sweet is easier to remember than long and dry. Added tip: type your domain name into your search bar. Is it easy or difficult? It’s all about top-of-mind awareness with blogging. You essentially want it to be catchy without being too long.
- Do not steal or copy someone else’s domain name. Although you can’t actually take someone’s established domain by law, make sure you’re being authentic. You want to set yourself apart from the rest.
- Make sure your domain conveys the brand image you’re looking to create. Your niche, brand, domain, and content should all be consistent with one another.
Step 3: Set Up Hosting
I HIGHLY suggest starting your hosting through BlueHost. I’ve been with BlueHost for two years now and cannot give enough positive feedback. Bluehost is one of the largest and most respected web hosting providers in the world. This company supports more than 2 million websites worldwide.
BlueHost has been one of WordPress’ top- recommended hosts since 2005. They offer an anytime money-back guarantee.
Another aspect I love about BlueHost – most companies require multiple logins to access different aspects of your account. Most of all, BlueHost users can access everything — websites, emails, domains, and billing — from one place.
I have been MORE than satisfied with their customer service. Anytime I’ve ever needed a restore on my blog or experienced website issues, they have resolved the issue within 20-30 minutes. I have not been disappointed ONE time with BlueHost’s 24/7 technical support. Amazing team of people.
Once you click on the “Get Started Now” button, you’ll be able to pick your plan and see which domains are available and which are not with a simple click. You can pick a domain, pay for hosting through BlueHost, and start designing your blog instantly. It’s an all-in-one kind of deal. And this is why I love BlueHost so much. It’s unlike any other hosting company.
Step 4: Pick Your Plan
BlueHost has three plans to choose from – basic, plus and prime. So what is the difference?
You really only need the basic plan when first starting out. This is the one I went with. So skip the Plus and Business plans because those are more expensive and honestly not needed at this time. You can always change it later on down the road, if needed. I would choose the 36 month plan, which gives you the BEST price and allows for the most savings! Soooo much cheaper than paying year to year. If you’re in it for the long haul, choose the 36-month pay period. You won’t be disappointed by the savings. (This is what I did.)
Step 5: Choose Your Domain
Type in your chosen domain in the “new domain” space and click next. (If you already have an existing domain through another provider, you can switch your hosting easily now!)
And seriously, can I just point out hosting is as little as $3.95 per month?! This also includes 24/7 tech support for the life of your plan! You seriously can’t beat that.
The next step is to include your account information. Again, BlueHost gives you an even bigger discount if you pay for 2 or 3 years at a time.
Simply enter your payment information to complete your account, enter a password, and you’re on your way to soon starting your blog!!
Step 6: Choose a Password
Create a password and login to your account!
Step 5: Pick a Theme
The next step is deciding on a blog theme. There are tons of free themes you can choose from. Although I love anything free (who doesn’t? 🙂), I suggest finding a premium theme.
A premium theme allows you so much more freedom to design your website and make it uniquely your own. And by freedom, I mean pretty fonts, visible editor (front page editing so you can see your edits before saving them), adjustable post layouts, endless colors, different photography positioning, unique branding, multiple menu layouts, customizable header and sidebar, etc.
Step 7: Login to Your Account
Alright, friends – the moment you’ve all been waiting for… YAY, the FUN PART! Let’s design your blog! (Cue your happy dance).
IMPORTANT TIP to keep in mind: when logging into your website dashboard the domain you will ALWAYS navigate to will be: http://www.YOURDOMAINNAME.com//wp-admin.
At the end of your url, you’ll always want to add, “//wp-admin.” This allows you to login to your dashboard! Without it, you’ll see what your readers see without being able to update posts and customize your site.
Step 8: Start Building
Start building your site! Upon logging in, you’ll have access to your WordPress dashboard and you’ll be able to begin creating content.
During this time of designing and customizing your site, your front end page will display a “Coming Soon” page. This allows you to work on your site without the public navigating through it prior to launching.
Step 9: Launch Your Site!!!
You’ve worked your tail feathers off to get your blog up and going. To have readers access your blog and all of its contents, you’ll want to launch your site. Feel free to take this step whenever you are satisfied with your progress and ready to show the world what you have to offer!
I suggest doing these 5 things before launching your blog so that you have a significant amount for your audience to read through.
Think about it this way: if you only have one or two blog posts written by the time you launch your website, what reason will your readers have to stay? When people navigate to your website, most of the time, they are looking for a reason to stay and learn more! Give them just that by having enough content for them to read through! 😊
THAT’S IT, FRIENDS!! You’re officially welcomed into the Blogging Community!
If you have any questions, comments or concerns, feel free to email me directly at: [email protected]. I will gladly help you with anything you need.
Here are more related articles to help you get started blogging in no time!
- 7 Tips on Balancing Blogging, a Full-Time Career & Motherhood
- The ONE Tool you Need to Skyrocket Your Blog Traffic
- How I More Than DOUBLED my Pinterest Views
Want more help on blogging? Here’s where I’m hangin’ out and giving my best advice for bloggers!