You are thinking about starting a blog, but all the logistics sound overwhelming.
Guess what— everybody is on the same boat. I was clueless. When I created my first website aged 15 I had no idea how to start a blog or how to be a blogger. Heck, I was just there for the GIFs.
Good news though: the tech side of blogging is easier than you think. I learned a ton of lessons whilst creating multiple websites and blogs for myself and others. Guess what? You can learn from my pain and suffering what does it really take to set up a blog.
Fortunately, there are a few steps that are very similar for anyone looking to get serious about their online presence.
Domain and Hosting
Whenever our bloggers ask me what is the first step to take your blog to the next level, I always ask: do you have hosting or a domain?
When I started my blog I went to Bluehost* and registered my first domain – ‘not another music blog’. I know, I was hipster before hipster was even a thing.
I did not have to set up WordPress page first, since Bluehost does all that for you. I personally recommend Bluehost to all my clients and bloggers we have on the platform, but there is a wealth of hosting sites out there. Especially for newbies, their live chat is extremely helpful.
The truth is that with a very simple, “one-click” install WordPress will be now part of your Bluehost account. Once you follow the instructions and setup WordPress, you’ll be already half way there (must say, people should really rethinking the magical power of knowledge base).
Pick your favourite Theme
The perfect theme is just one click away – trust me, it is. The right theme gives you the look and feel you want for your blog – from extremely customisable options, to a very minimal look (just like on my blog). My favourite marketplace is Theme Forest (just filter for WordPress blogs)
All you want to make sure is that the theme is easy to instal, and that the theme has a good and valuable support system. Anything that includes support forums, and online documentation is a thumb up.
If you’re not a coder (just like I am not), a theme makes the design work a million times easier.
The Design of your Blog
Let’s give you a high-five first. You have your domain, hosting, WordPress, and theme all in one place. Go you!
It’s time to make sure the design is on point – think about small things like “are the colours of the blog reflecting my brand” and “it the homepage welcoming, clear and inviting”?
Now it’s time to really make sure your header is on point, you have a few sexy headshots in the right place – yes, that includes your sidebar. Have you added all the right links to social accounts? See, I know you’d miss something.
Add some Plugins
You do not need to overdo it – unless you are a platform like the Health Bloggers Community, in which case you’ll end up with 35 plugins (ahaha – no I am not joking). Ideally, when getting started you only need a few plugins on your site – and only if the theme does not already have those features.
To give you an example, you want to make sure that things like “Google Analytics for WordPress” and share-button plugins (like “ShareThis“) to help your blog go viral. Best Plugins will require a whole article on its own, so hold your horses for this.
Write some Content
Don’t look at me like that. As if this is the most obvious thing ever. Because now you have a whole canvas, and what are you going to do with it? I am not just talking about your posts, what about the content for your pages: About Page, Contact Page, Start Here Page, Archives Page, etc.
Once that is done, you can start writing new blog posts and publishing them regularly (challenge you to post at least once a week).
Yes, this is all that it takes to setup your blog. It wasn’t that hard, was it?
*I am personally a Bluehost affiliate, and proudly so, which means you can get amazing discounts when setting up your blog