I’ve going to take the plunge and offer advice to people looking to start a blog. As someone with a few blogs, I like to consider myself a bit of an expert on the matter. So, if you’re ready to pull up your sleeves and get into the hard work of having your very own blog, this post is for you.
Why Should You Start a Blog?
I could go on about this forever, but I pretty much think everyone should start a blog! It’s a great way to express yourself, to get your message out there and be heard.
It’s good for your mental health! Sometimes even the simple act of writing (or typing) your thoughts can be therapeutic and blogging gives you an amazing platform that can be as anonymous (or not) as you want.
It is also an incredibly way to make friends and find other like-minded individuals.
We know from various TED talks and research articles that loneliness and a lack of hobbies are bad for our mental health. Blogging can help with both of those. It provides something tangible to focus our energies on and allows us to find people who care about the same things we do.
If you’ve found your way here, you’ve probably thought about starting your own blog. You probably have a whole lot of questions, I tried to answer as many of the questions I had when I first started blogging here.
I remember when I was thinking about starting my first. I was confused, overwhelmed and a bit intimidated.
Knowing what I know now, starting a blog doesn’t have to be any of those things! In fact, it can be quick, simple and a lot of fun.
Starting a blog was a lot easier than I expected and I can’t wait to show you how I did it.
First Things First
There’s no time like the present… Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today…
Just do it, jump in the deep end and make your blog. Seriously, with all the time you’ve spent worrying about how to start a blog and Googling how to start the best blog ever, you could have started one 5 times over by now.
Pretty much everything can be changed, so don’t get too bogged down by the little details. Start your blog and just wing it.
Take a deep breath and give yourself a high five, your dreams of blogging are about to become a reality! Can you believe it? Pretty soon you’re going to be able to call yourself a webmaster, a blogger, an influencer.
That’s amazing! I’m so proud of you, I can’t wait to watch your blog grow and florish.
Pay attention, things are going to move really quickly from here on out. In just 15 minutes you can have your very own blog!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links from Amazon, Bluehost and other networks which means I earn from qualifying purchases.
The first thing you’ll want to do is get your hosting figured out. This is one of those things about having a blog that costs money, but it means you own your website as well as your content, you will also have more control over your code and the layout of your website. Being self hosted is also essential if you hope to profit from your blog at some point in the future.
I would recommend doing it right away. You can register for a free blog through wordpress.com or blogger but once your traffic and income potential starts to pick up, you’ll want to go the self hosted route. Personally, I recommend a self hosted wordpress.org blog.
Are you ready to do this?
If you are, head on over to Bluehost and get started. One of the neat things about Bluehost is that you can get a free domain name and SSL certificate when you sign up.
Wondering how big of a savings that actually is? I have an e-commerce site that is hosted through another company But I pay $15/ year for my domain name and $40/ year for my SSL certificate.
Hosting plans on Bluehost start at about $4/ month which is a great deal considering everything you get for free. They’re also super WordPress friendly and offer 24/ 7 support.
That 24/ 7 support I just mentioned, super important. I can’t even tell you how many times I found myself awake at 3:00 AM because my website just wasn’t working the way I wanted it to. I probably would have been up yet later if I had to wait for normal business hours.
If you’re serious about blogging and plan on seeing your blog grow, thrive and maybe even generate some income, self hosted is without a doubt the way to go.
Let’s Get Started
There is no shortage of hosting companies. All of them offer different perks for different prices, find the plan that is right for you.
But, for our purposes today, we’re going to walk through the process on Bluehost..
When you’re ready to take the plunge, you’ll find yourself on a page that looks a lot like this:
You’re going to click on the green get started now button and select your plan.
If you’re just starting out, I’d recommend the $3.95/ month plan. You can always upgrade later if you need to.
This is where you want to put in the domain name you choose earlier. The next few screens have you filling out your personal information, paying for your hosting and setting up a password.
You don’t need me to show you that! I’m pretty sure you’ve been on the internet long enough to have purchased a few things and possibly even use the same password created when you were 10 years old (not a good idea, but it’s so easy to remember). So go do those things and come right back here when you get to the following screen.
Don’t be afraid to play around here. You can change your theme at any time if it’s not working for you. Truth be told, I probably went through 20 themes before finding mine. Don’t be afraid to experiment and make a few mistakes. Once you’ve chosen your theme, you get to start setting things up, that’s when the real fun begins.
They’re going to ask if you want to set up a business or personal site, choose the one that feels the most right to you. I went with personal. Once you’ve done that, you’ll get your first glimpse at your WordPress Dashboard.
Isn’t it pretty!
You’re now the proud owner of your very own blog! The only thing left for you to do is launch your site and start writing. Don’t be afraid to play around. There are tons of customization options if you click “appearance” on the left hand menu. There’s even more options if you start looking at the plugins.
We’ll go through customizing your site and adding plugins over the next few days. For now, you deserve a pat on the back and an extra piece of cake after supper. I’m so proud of you!
Leave a comment with the link to your blog. I love finding new blogs to follow and interact with.