Learn how to start a blog in just a few minutes with these 3 simple steps and tutorial. There’s no better time than now to start your own blogging journey.
Have you been wanting to start your own blog? I personally think you starting your own blog is a fabulous idea! Blogging has brought me so much joy. As my blog has grown, it now provides me with an extra $2,000 a month in income that I get to make doing what I love right from home..
Whatever your passion is, recipes, DIY, crafts, fitness, family, homeschooling, faith, or a lifestyle blog with a little mix of things, there is a whole lot of room in this big ole World Wide Web for so much more awesome content.
When I started my blog (back in 2009), I had no idea where to start. I had to search and search and did so many, many things the hard way and very wrong. One BIG mistake I made was not starting with a WordPress blog AND being hosted. I just did not have the knowledge. I, then, had to pay someone to transfer everything over to WordPress and set up the hosting for me.
I have been wanting to write this “How to Start a Blog” tutorial for a very long time. I want to help you NOT make the same mistakes I made and do things the correct way from the start.
Let’s do this! Today is your day to start your very own income earning blog!
It’s not at all as hard as it may seem. All you have to do is follow these 3 easy steps and in about 15 minutes you are on you way to your very own blogging adventure.
How to Start a WordPress Blog
Three Simple Steps:
- Pick your Domain Name and Hosting Package
- Install WordPress
- Design it!
1) Pick your Domain Name and Hosting Package
This is the most fun of all! What do you want your blog name to be? Make a list of several ideas for your name. Be creative, be funny, be completely literal with just your name if you’d like. I highly suggest picking a .com name over any other choices like .net, .us, etc. for search engine optimization purposes.
Once you have your list of possible names, head over to Bluehost to see if your idea for a blog name is available by entering it in the box you see that looks like the one below.
Next, you’ll be taken to a page to select the package to host your blog’s domain name. Think of hosting as “renting” space on the internet to display your new blog. If your blog is not hosted, you really won’t be found by Google. Who wants that? I didn’t do this in the beginning and regret it often!
Bluehost is a wonderful hosting company that has great rates to get started with. When you host through them you also get your domain name for free. They also offer 24/7 support and will walk you through everything if needed.
When asked about which plan you would like, choose the “Starter Plan”. The best choice is the $3.95/month option. This is paid in one lump sum instead of monthly and will save you a TON of money.
If your choice of domain name is available you will see this “Congratulations” page.
- Simply fill in your name under the “Account Information” section.
- Then select the account plan you want. The 36 months for $3.49 /month is the best option. I also recommend selecting the “Domain Privacy Protection” option to keep pesky spammers away.
- Complete the “Billing Information”section
- Check the Box next to “I confirm I have read and agree to the Terms of Service, etc.
- Click “Submit”
On the next page you will see options to add upgrades. Skip this. You don’t need any of these, so just scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the green “Complete” button.
2) Installing WordPress
Once you’ve finished your registration with Bluehost, you will need to install WordPress. This is the blog platform you will use for actually creating your awesome new blog posts. It’s what I use and love. It is really simple to install.
On the following page, your domain name should be showing in the box. Confirm that it is and then click the green”Check Domain” button
On the next page, mark the box confirming that you accept the terms again. Then click the green button that says “Install Now”
At the top of the next page, you will see a green status bar showing WordPress loading. When it is finished, it will change to an orange Install Complete.
Click on “View Credentials”
Be sure to write down and bookmark your Admin URL (for logging into your dashboard), Username and Password. You can change your username and password to something else later, but you’ll need this one the first time you log into your brand new blog dashboard.
It is best to NOT leave your username as “Admin”. I use my full name as my username.
Type your Admin URL into your web browser. You’ll see a login screen like the one below. Enter your Username and Password you copied down from the previous step.
CONGRATULATIONS!! You are ready to start your blogging journey and share your first post with the world. What will it be? A recipe, a DIY project, an introduction?
3) Design it!
One of the best things you can do for your blog is make it visually appealing. Make it purdy!
When people visit for the first time, you want them to feel warm and fuzzy and hope they like what they see so they will keep coming back for more great inspiration from you. WordPress has loads of free WordPress themes to pick from and see what you like best.
However, if you are really serious about turning your passion into a potential income maker, another thing I highly recommend is a premium theme starting out. Again, something I didn’t do and definitely would have if I had known how important it is to SEO optimization.
Here are 2 very popular themes that will give you much better Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for your blog.
The Genesis Framework – This is the current framework I’m using on To Simply Inspire. It is worth it to get a child theme to go along with it too.
DIY The Thesis Theme – I had this theme for years before switching the Genesis. It is wonderful and I still highly recommend it.
Once you have a premium theme, you can delete all the free themes that came with your WordPress install. They can be bait for hackers for some reason.
A few more starters before creating your first post in WordPress
1. Permalink Structure – It is good to change the way your blog post URL’s will look once you publish a post. Default is like this http://www.tosimplyinspire.com/?p=123, with the number of your post showing. Not very pretty and not loved by search engines as much at all. Select by “Post name” (or by “Day and Name”). Your URL will then look like this: http://www.tosimplyinspire.com/how-to-start-a-blog.html
2. Create new posts – Click on “Posts” on the left side of your screen and click “Add New”. Once you are ready to post, simply click Publish. You can save drafts to work on as well. You can also add a page, which is a static page and will not show up in chronological order like a post does. They are great for having to link back to in a post.
3. If you want to add an image, click on “Media” on the left side and click “Add New”. All the pictures you ever add will be stored under Media. Pictures are so important! Create beautiful pictures and resize images to about 500 x 800 pixels in a program like PicMonkey.
NEXT, you will want to install these must-have plugins to help your new blog run the smoothest.