This is the 2nd post and in this post, I’m going to tell you how to start a blog in 7 simple and easy to apply steps.
In my previous post, I discussed with you about what a blog is and the benefits involved in starting a blog for yourself.
You can look at the benefits of blogging by clicking this.
This post will explain to you the exact steps that I took for starting this blog.
That is from choosing your domain name to installing WordPress.
I have also included an infographic which will briefly tell you about how can you start your blog by yourself.
All the immediate and important steps are mentioned in the infographic so that you can understand where to start from and how to navigate yourself through the process of starting a blog.
There are 7 steps to start a blog –
- 1st – Choosing a niche.
- 2nd – Choosing a domain name.
- 3rd – Choosing a blogging platform.
- 4th – Choosing a Web Host.
- 5th – Installing WordPress.
- 6th – Selecting a theme.
- 7th – Important plugins.
Let’s Get Started…
1st – Choose a Niche
The niche is basically the topic in which you are interested in starting a blog.
For example, I started this blog in the niche of Money Making Blogs simply because of my interest in making some passive money through the internet. So, therefore, I chose this topic for my blog.
Note – Blogging provides you with great opportunities of making some handsome money online.
Now to start a blog, you have to choose a niche in which you are interested because if you randomly choose any topic to start a blog on, you will eventually get bored and stop working on it.
Also, when you follow your interest then it will be a lot easier to stay motivated.
As I already said that I started this blog on the topic of blogging and making money from it, which is my field of interest, I find it easy to stay motivated and to work on it.
There are many niches in which you can easily start a blog.
Niches Like –
- Health and Fitness.
- Making Money Online.
- Food & Recipe.
- Home Decor/ DIY/ Lifehacks
These are some most popular niches to start a blog in.
But it does not mean that if they are popular then you must start blogging in these niches only.
If you start a blog on a topic which you find interesting and for which you are enthusiastic only then you must start a blog on that topic otherwise, it will be a complete waste of time, energy and obviously money.
A little more on – How to choose the best niche for your blog?
2nd – Choose a Domain Name
Domain name = Name of your blog/site.
Basically, what do you want to call your blog?
It is the name of your site by which you and the others are going to address it.
Have a Purpose before you Start a Blog
- Why am I starting a blog in the first place?
- Who all are going to come to my blog for its contents?
- Will people relate themselves to my blog?
These are few of the things that are to be considered before you start a blog and also before you choose any random name.
For example, my blog’s domain name is theblogstream. I chose this name because this blog is all about blogging and things related to it such as starting your blog, developing content for it and promotion of that content and certainly making money from it.
If I had chosen any other random name then it could have happened that people would not relate to what I am writing on my blog.
3rd – Choose a Blogging Platform
Blogging platforms are actually, the content management systems, also called CMS where you can create your blog posts and manage them.
There are many blogging platforms to choose from and each one of them comes with their own pros and cons.
FYI, WordPress.org (self-hosted WordPress) is the best blogging platform for anyone who wants to start a blog.
For now, I will tell you few basic differences b/w free hosting and self-hosting which will help you a lot in choosing a blogging platform for your blog.
It is a free hosting service where you don’t need to pay anything for getting your blog/website hosted.
All you need is a domain name and you are ready to go.
Well, starting with a free hosting may sound good where you can get hosted for free, but this service is free for a reason.
And that reason is the limitations.
Limitations of free hosting that prevent you from becoming a successful blogger –
- You don’t own your blog as you are hosted on the free server.
- You can’t customize your blog according to your taste.
- Won’t be able to monetize your blog as much as you want and also you have to share your income with your free hosting service provider.
- You’re at their mercy. They can simply remove your blog from their server without any prior information.
This is the type of hosting service where you can get your blog hosted after you pay for some server space.
This type of service entitles you to have complete control over your blog.
You can manage and posts as many articles you want. Customize it according to your taste and much much more.
Benefits of Self-Hosting are –
- You have complete authority of your online asset be it a blog or a website.
- You can customize your blog to your heart’s content.
- You can apply as many methods for making money you want through your blogs.
- You keep the entire income you make through your blogs.
It is though recommended for the newbie bloggers that they start from a free hosting platforms because that will help in developing their writing skills.
Also, free hosting services will not disturb you with the technicalities and other updates that a self-hosted CMS requires.
But as you grow you would eventually want to shift to a better platform and then self-hosting will be your one stop.
Few of the most popular free blogging platforms are –
- Tumblr (Social media cum blogging platform)
- Svbtle (Subscription fee of $6 for new users)
- Live Journal
4th – Choose a Web Host
In order to host your blog on the internet, you need to purchase hosting from a hosting provider.
Assuming that you have decided to go with self-hosting, I will briefly tell you about few of the most popular hosting service providers.
Following are the best web hosting providers –
You can go with anyone of them as all are going to give you optimal service of web hosting.
Generally, it costs around $2 – $5 per month for purchasing a web hosting service.
I use HostGator (affiliate link) to host this blog as I was already aware of it.
HostGator is one of the best web hosting providers that provides very good uptime and site load speed.
Also, their customer support service is very nice.
Hostgator costs around $ 5.95/ month if you choose the baby plan. I would recommend you to go with the baby plan as it has some better perks over the hatchling plan like unlimited domains and unmetered bandwidth.
Also, Check out – How to Choose the Best Web Hosting Provider for Your New Blog?
Click on this link and get you site hosted with HostGator. This is an affiliate link and if you purchase hosting by clicking that link I will earn a small commission from this purchase.
There will be no extra charge to you at all.
5th – Installing WordPress
Now that you have purchased hosting you will be able to install WordPress on your domain easily.
Most of the hosting providers provide a cPanel from where you can easily install WordPress.
To install WordPress, check your email which you have registered with your hosting provider.
There you must have received two emails.
One is your billing information and the other one will be about your account information.
Both the emails are very important. If by chance you lose your cPanel username or password you can use these emails to retrieve them.
So, it would be better to create a separate folder for them.
Look at the video below to know how to install WordPress on your domain.
This video will tell you how to install WordPress when you have used Hostgator as your hosting provider.
video by: Let’s Build WP
The process of installing WordPress is mostly the same the only difference will be the hosting provider from where you have purchased hosting.
There are many others ways of installing WordPress but this method is the best and easier.
This is called one-click WordPress installation.
6th – Selecting a Theme
Themes give a face to your blog/site. Themes are actually how your site is going to appear when a visitor visits your blog.
To select a theme look at your WP dashboard section on the left-hand side and you will find appearance button there.
Take your cursor there and hover over the appearance button. A drop-down will appear from there you can select themes and look at all the themes available to you.
But there is a thing that when you are starting out with your blog for the first time, it is going to be hard for you to decide which theme to choose and which not.
WordPress users widely use two types of themes that are –
- Free Themes – Those which are free to use and you can select them by clicking on the theme button under appearance.
- Premium Themes – These are not free and you are to pay in order to use these themes.
Premium themes have an added advantage like they are SEO optimized and provide full customer support.
But then again choosing any random theme for your blog will rather hamper your blog than being of any benefit to it.
And at last…
7th – Important Plugins to Install
Plugins give additional features and functionality to yo blogs like making it available for social shares, spam blocks, compressing images and adding alt text to your images, providing backup and much more.
You can easily install and activate plugins by taking your cursor over to the plugins button (just below the “appearance” button) and selecting “add new”.
The later version of WordPress may have already installed few plugins for you.
Akismet and Jetpack are few which you may find already installed when you click on plugins. These plugins are very handy so do not delete them.
Now when you click on add new, you will see all the plugins that you can install and activate for free.
Now since it is free, it does not mean that you install all the plugins that you see because if you do that you will seriously hamper your site’s performance and speed. Never do that.
Widely used Plugins by every blogger are –
- SEO by Yoast.
- Google Analytics.
- Contact Form 7.
- WP Super Cache
With the above-mentioned plugins, you are ready to go undertake your blogging journey
The above-mentioned steps are common for everyone who is starting their blog for the first time. The difference will be only of two things and that will be your domain name registrar and your hosting provider.
Generally, it takes 10 to 15 minutes to start your blog. Sometimes it can take up to 20 minutes depending on your internet speed and then your very own WP site is ready.
Please let me know in the comment box below about –
Which topic did you choose for your blog?
Which hosting provider you have decided to go on with?
And if you’re in doubt regarding any step then kindly leave your query in the comment section below and I will get back to ASAP.
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