These are the main steps we’ll cover. Don’t worry, I’ll walk you right through.
Step 1: Decide what to blog about
If you’re part of a business, company or organization, this step will be easy to determine. Your blog should be related to the product(s) or service(s) you provide, or the cause you promote.
If you’re an individual, you have more flexibility with a topic choice.
- Blog about something with plenty of room for discussion. A blog requires a lot of content to get going and to remain interesting. You’ll be at this a while so make sure you have plenty to talk about.
- Blog about something you enjoy. If you don’t care about your topic, writing about it will be drudgery. Also, why would readers be interested if you aren’t?
- Choose a niche in which you can establish yourself as an authority. You will probably not be the first person to blog about the topic you choose. It’s almost guaranteed someone else has thought of it before you. Don’t fret about this, but ask yourself if you have a reasonable chance at making your blog better than all the others in your niche.
The goal of any blog is to become the go-to resource for its topic or niche.
Step 2: Choose a blogging platform
There are many services you can use to start a blog or website. You may be tempted to use a free service, but know you’ll be limited, and in some cases, quite severely. You get what you pay for, as they say. Using a paid-for service isn’t expensive. It’s a no-brainer in my opinion.
What is the best blogging platform?
Of the many blogging platforms out there, WordPress is, by far, the most popular. This is for good reason.
I use WordPress myself and appreciate its flexibility, functionality, ease of use and a large community of people who share tools and ideas. It’s an excellent choice. And don’t worry, if you want a website without a blog, WordPress makes it easy.
Caution! Within WordPress, you have two options. People are often confused by the two so I’ll mention them here:
- Hosted WordPress blogs are often referred to as “WordPress.com blogs.”
- Self-hosted WordPress blogs are often referred to as “WordPress.org blogs.” (recommended)
A self-hosted WordPress costs a little bit of money but will give you much more control and flexibility. It’s absolutely what I recommend.
This guide outlines the steps to start a self-hosted WordPress blog.
Step 3: Find a host
A host provides server space for your site. Put simply, when your site lives on a server (instead of on your personal computer on your desk), others can find your site on the internet.
Select your plan
Choose the plan you’d like to start with. I typically go with the Plus or Prime plan because you get more unlimited features.
Note that all plans come with one free domain (for one year) which is good. Your domain is your web address. I’ll talk about choosing a domain in a minute.
If your budget is super tight (I’ve certainly been there), go ahead and choose the Basic plan. You can upgrade at any time.
Click one of the green “select” buttons to move to the next step.
Step 4: Pick a domain name
Like I said, a domain is a web address. For example, AmyLynnAndrews.com is my domain. You may or may not already have a domain. To have an existing domain, you would have registered it with a domain registrar, like GoDaddy my personal favourite.
On this screen, you’ll either choose a brand new domain or enter a domain you registered previously.
If you don’t have a domain, enter a new domain name. Make sure .com or the correct extension of your choice is selected from the drop-down menu beside it.
If you’ve already registered a domain name.
Note: For the purpose of this tutorial, I will use a new domain. If you are using an existing domain, the process is mostly the same. You can still follow along easily. You will only see minor differences in the choices on the screen, etc.
After entering your new or existing domain, click the blue Next button.
Tips for choosing a domain name:
- The goal is to make it easy to remember and easy to share!
- Go with a .com whenever possible. People always assume .com before other extensions like .net, .org, .co or others.
- Make it easy to say and spell.
- Don’t include hyphens, numbers, obscure terms or confusing strings of words.
- If you’re not sure what to use, your name is a safe bet to start.
- Be creative or try a phrase if you’re having trouble finding an available name.
Also read :