How To Start A Blog 101: A Step-By-Step Tutorial With Pictures
So you want to know how to start a blog?
Well, you’ve come to the right place, my goal is that by the end of this article you will know how to set up and begin your journey as a blogger.
I started my first blog in 2002, after high school. My goal was to have a massive blog with an active forum.
I jumped from one side of the world wide web to the other in search of information to help me get my blog off the ground.
Shortly after launch, I got bored and my poor blog eventually died.
This guide is a derived from things that I have learned work and that have helped me to progress in the blogging world!
Why Start A Blog?
There are a lot of reasons to start a blog. Some of the most popular reasons are:
- To make money online from home. This is one of the most attractive reasons to start blogging. I make a substantial income from blogging. Once you have a large enough audience, a blog is a great way to generate passive income, and can be a lucrative side hustle. Although a large amount of hard work is required up front, the pay off is a great incentive to get your blog up and running
- Grow an existing business. If you have a website that doesn’t get a lot of traffic, adding a blog can definitely raise awareness of your brand. Blog post related to your business, give people other ways to find your website online through various google searches.
- Maybe you just like to write. A blog can be your online diary and a great place to jot down your thoughts, and feelings, that could possibly help out other like-minded individuals.
Do any of these reasons interest you? Do you have different reasons?
8 Steps To Create Your Own Blog
- Pick a blog Topic.
- Choose a blogging platform
- Choose a host for your blog
- Pick a domain name
- Install WordPress to your platform
- Install necessary WordPress plugins
- Customize and design your blog
- Update your blog on a consistent basis
Step 1: Pick A Blog Topic
Before you can create a blog you have to think about what your goal is. Is this for a business or personal use. If you are hoping to make money as a blogger, it’s best to pick a topic that is narrow enough to be considered a niche, yet broad enough for you to be able to create content on a regular basis. It’s important to try to blog on topics that you genuinely have a strong passion for or you will likely end up quitting.
It helps to blog about things you know a lot about because you want your blog to be the go-to website for people in your specific niche. Try to make sure your topic is one that makes for good discussions, as this will attract viewers to your page.
Step 2: Choose a Blogging Platform
There are many blogging platforms available. As I mentioned I have been blogging since 2002, and WordPress is hands down the best blogging platform, in my opinion, this is because its very user-friendly, and easy to learn. Back when I first started blogging, I had to learn HTML code which is hella confusing. If you can navigate through the internet, you can learn WordPress.
Step 3: Get Hosting
Blogs need hosting. Hosting is how users find your website on the internet.
There are a lot of different hosting companies out there, a lot of which are free, and though this may be attractive to new bloggers, it may hurt you in the long run, especially if you plan to become an authority in your niche.
Free blogs might seem like a good idea, but they have a number of flaws. The reasons why most bloggers prefer to avoid free blog sites are:
-free blogs give you a domain like examplesite.blogger.com..awkward isn’t it? Self-hosted blogs have domains like www.examplesite.com
– Unpaid advertising. In order for the free blog companies to make money. They plaster ads on your website, that you receive no income from
– You aren’t allowed to advertise any affiliate links, sell products, or monetize with Google Adsense
– You can’t use plugins. Plugins are used to customize your WordPress website.
– You can’t have a custom email address like Dave@Examplesite.com
Hosting isn’t that expensive and is a very low-cost investment in the longevity of your blog. Bad hosting can cause slow loading speeds on your page which is bad for your overall user experience.
To get hosting:
Head over to BlueHost, and click get started.
- Select a plan, I recommend the basic package until you decide if blogging is something you want to do long-term. You can always upgrade your plan later.
STEP 4: Pick a domain name
Once you pick the package that works best for you, you can either choose or select a domain name.
For our example we used www.examplesite.com but, you can choose whatever name you like, or if you have an exiting domain you can enter it now, then click next.
Your domain name is what people type in to get to your website. My domain, www.AffordEverything.com was chosen because its easy to remember. I recommend picking a domain that is:
- Easy to remember
- Properly spelled
- Easy to say and spell
- Does not include hyphens, numbers, or uncommon characters
- Preferably has a .com extension
Once you have decided on a domain name for your blog, finish filling out your info, and follow the prompts to complete checkout.
STEP 5: Install WordPress
Once your account is complete, go back to the Bluehost homepage and click log in
Enter your login info from step 4, and click submit
This will bring you to the home page, click the install WordPress icon(circled below)
Next, you will presented with this screen. Click install WordPress to start the install
Once WordPress is installed select your domain from the drop-down menu, if it’s not already selected. Make sure to leave the direct field blank unless you know what you are doing.
Now it’s time to enter your WordPress log-in info. It is important here to pick user names and passwords that you can remember because this is how you will log in to WordPress whenever you want to edit, start a new blog post, or do anything within WordPress.
DO NOT use admin as your username and DO NOT use password as your password. If someone can guess your information they can hijack your website.
After WordPress is fully installed, you will see the “Status: success” message . Take note of the information to access your new WordPress site. This information automaticly emailed to you as well.
Step 6: Install Necessary plug-ins
In WordPress plugins are what you use to add customization and function to your blog. You are going to want to experiment to find out what works best for you, but there are a few every website should have!
To install plugins to your page, on the right side of your wordpress dashboard select Plugins
Then select add new
This is where you type the plugin you are looking for
NOTE: MOST plugins are free, but some have options for you to upgrade
The plugins I recommend for everyone are:
YOAST SEO – Yoast SEO is a plug in that make sure all your post are SEO friendly, so that they are easily ranked by google
WP-Stats – This plugin keeps track of how many visitors/visits your page is recieveing. This is kept track on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis. These numbers are good to keep track of so you know when your post are doing well.
Shareaholic – Shareaholic adds share buttons to your post, so that your guest can easily click and share to Facebook, twitter, digg, reddit, pinterest, and all the other popular social media bookmarking sites.
Step 7: Install a theme to your wordpress blog
Think of WordPress themes as clothing for your website, you want to dress it up and give it your own personal touch. This is all a matter of preference. I recommend you experiment with different themes until you find one you like. Like plugins, there are thousands of wordpress themes you can download for free, but as you get more involved in your blog you may want to upgrade to a paid version or get a custom made wordpress theme.
To install a theme click on the Appearance button on the side of your wordpress dashboard
Then click Add New
Now you can either search for themes using the search at the right of the screen, browse through the categories, or if you have a custom theme you can upload by clicking the ‘upload theme button.
To test them out highlight it with your mouse and the install button will come up, click it and choose ‘Live Preview, if you like it click the ‘Activate button, if not hit the X and try again.
Step 8: Update your blog on a consistent basis
You can start posting blog post now, all you have to do is click the post button and click add new
This is where you write your blog post once you are done, click publish and your article goes live on your website
Its important to update your website on a frequent basis, you don’t need to blog everyday, but establishing some sort of routines will be helpful
Search engines are constantly looking for new information, they like to index sites with consistently updated information, so try to pick a blogging schedule and stick to it. Don’t let months pass before deciding to write your next post. If you intend to build an audience for your blog, you have to keep pumping out content.
A good thing to remember is that blogs take a long time to establish, its very rare that bloggers experience success over night, so make sure to tend to your blog, as if it were a business because it is. This doesnt apply so much to anyone interested in making a personal blog for friends but if you plan on monetizing its in your best interest to exercise consistency in your writng habits.
If you are reading this you made it all the way to the end of this article and you know how to start a blog,from picking a blogging topic to customizing your blog with a theme and writing your first post.
Now go out and create and be great.
Let me know how your blog turns out!
How many blogs do you own? What are some other tips to help new bloggers?
Let me know in the comments section below…:)
If you found this post helpful, please SHARE, and SUBSCRIBE