So I’ve successfully gotten my first blog up and running and I have to say, it was easier than expected! I spent a lot of time with my other boyfriend Google, researching how to get started, what programs and themes to use, and how I can use my blog to showcase information on a topic that I am passionate about. Blogging is a very successful way to earn money and promote your own products once you have built up a following, so this is a must-have to include in conversation when I talk about Work at Home opportunities. But you know what?
It took A LOT of time.
If I had come across one or two easy to follow tutorials on how to start a blog, I would have been done in no time. Fortunately, all my hard work has paid off and I finally have a product that I can call my own. I named it, I created it and I’m maintaining it and I couldn’t be more proud.
You too can be where I am!
I’m going to explain step by step how to create your blog so you can make the transition from WANTING to DOING.
I have comprised all the little details into 8 easy to follow steps that will have you blogging like a champ in no time!
1.) Choose your Niche
You have to start here because if you don’t know what you’re going to blog about, you won’t be able to grow a dedicated audience and produce quality material on a consistent basis. People search the internet for specific things everyday and you want to make sure your blog can help them specifically with what they need. Some popular niches include:
• How To Make Money Online
Just to name a few. Choose something you are passionate about. People say that a lot and it’s true because I’ve found that if you’re not passionate about the product you put out it will show to your readers and you will lose interest quickly. There are millions of blogs on the net and you have to be able to make yours STAND OUT in your own way!
2.) A Name is Worth a Thousand Words
Have you ever came across a website that had a really cool name that you had to tell your friends about or share on social media because it was so awesome and clever? That’s what you want people to think when they come across your site. The Domain name of your site is the first impression you will give to your potential readers. Think of something that’s related to your niche and can stand out in the crowd. Also, try to have at least 2 other backup names just in case your #1 is taken. When I came up with Wahenthusiast, I initially wanted the domain name as workathomeenthusiast but I didn’t like the way that looked when typed into the browser, so take that into consideration as well. When people come to my site, they immediately see what the “Wah” stands for in my banner and my tagline is all about working from home. I used Instant Domain Search to check if the name I wanted was available before I even went on to step three, that way I was sure and ready to go.
3.) Pick the right host for your soiree.
What good is creating a beautiful blog and putting so much time and effort into it, just to have issues with your website such as users experiencing downtime, slow speeds, or poor security measures? Those are just some of the consequences of choosing a bad host for your blog. My quest was to find a host that was affordable, easy to use, and provided great support when I needed it. Like most of you who may be reading this, I didn’t have a lot of money to put into this blog, starting out. After much research of top host companies, I settled on Siteground to fulfill my hosting needs.
I chose Siteground because of the following traits:
Very Affordable: You can start off with the “startup” plan for only $3.95/month which is highly recommended for new bloggers. You will be charged on an annual basis, like most other host websites. They have two other plans you can choose from once your blog has grown and you need more features. StartUp is all you need at least for the first year.
Great Efficiency: Siteground is one of the industry leaders when it comes to fast load times and quality performance. I’ve had zero issues with my site thus far.
Customer Service: I’ve had to contact customer service twice just for help with wordpress and turnaround time has been great in my experience. Hold times are short and you can also chat with a representative if you prefer that method of communication.
Setting up my domain on Siteground was super easy and took all of five minutes to complete. Just check out the website, click “sign up” and follow the prompts to choose your plan and register your domain name. Keep in mind that Domain Registration will be an additional cost. That’s something that I learned on my own and wasn’t mentioned in other blogs I read so I just want to make you aware. You can choose additional add-ons if you’d like, but they are completely optional. The only add-on I would strongly recommend is Domain Privacy to protect your personal information from being publically available.
The last step is to pay, review, and complete and you are all done! You’ve now secured a reputable host for your blog.
4.) Install WordPress
The next step you want to take is to install WordPress through Siteground so you can begin creating your blog. WordPress is a very popular website content management platform and there are thousands of tutorials out there, so set up and maintenance will be a breeze for you. Check out this link for the video tutorial I watched to help me install WordPress from the Siteground dashboard. Once you have WordPress installed, you are ready to start customizing your blog. WordPress is pre-loaded with hundreds of free themes to choose from. If you really want to get fancy, you can explore premium themes as well that will have additional features and in some cases, better user functionality. I found success by visiting other blogs and scrolling to the bottom of their homepage to see where their theme was from. Most themes come with support from the theme creator so that if you need help with any aspect of theme customization, it is available to you.
5.) Start a Subscription List ASAP
Why would you want to start a subscription list so soon after creating your blog? You want people to come back and see all of your hard work and great content develop over time. It takes a lot of time to build a large following and sustain reader interest these days so starting your subscription list early can give a headstart in this area. You can use email subscription lists to provide more frequent updates, offer exclusive items, and host giveaways. I recommend Mailchimp, as it’s free to use for your first 2,000 subscribers and offers analytics, tutorials, and easy to use templates to help make and keep the process simple.
6.) Blog Boosting Plugins
The final step is to install plugins in WordPress that are going to work best for you to accomplish your goals with your blog. Some plugins I use and recommend include:
Code Embed – helps me embed code into my posts and pages with no hassle
Contact Form 7 – A simple and flexible contact form to use on your site
Insert Headers and Footers – Makes the process of insert code or text into a header or footer simple
Social Share WordPress Plugin – Adds various social media shares to your site with great configuration options
That’s a wrap! You’ve successful set up your blog are ready to start contributing meaningful and creative posts to the internet. Now go forth and blog to your heart’s content!
*In a few months, I’ll be writing a post about monetizing your blog and sharing my stats with you so you can see that it can be done and how I’m doing it, so subscribe now so you don’t miss out on more awesome content from me!
Have a great day!