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You wanna know how to start a blog.
Maybe it’s been on your mind for a while. You know you have important things to say. You want a new hobby. Or You’ve read the income reports and thought “why not me”? (And yes, why not you?)
There’s nothing quite as bitter as regretting not trying something you KNOW you want to do. I knew I wanted to try blogging – for profit – so I could work from home. And I knew the only way to find out if I could do it was to jump in with both feet.
And I have to say, I’m pretty happy I jumped. I love blogging. I’m making (real) money. (Read my income reports here!) Blogging is one of the best risks (if you can call less than 5$ per month a risk) I have ever taken.
If you wanna be blogging, you should be blogging. You’ll never know what you could create for yourself if you don’t try. And the best part is, you don’t even need to put on real clothes or leave the house. You just need to be committed to putting in the effort.
From your couch.
It is worth doing.
This is how to start a blog (a PROFITABLE blog) and work from home:
How to start a blog: STEP 1 – choose a domain name
Your domain name is your www.blogname.com. PICK ONE YOU LOVE. I made the terrible, no good, very bad mistake of picking one I was ok with. And then I wasted a month of my life (and some money) moving everything I had already created to the new website, one with a name I do love. You can see if the name you want is available by plugging it in at namecheap. If it comes up with a price, it’s available. If it says “make offer” then someone else already owns it. Try another one. (But don’t buy it yet!)
Things to keep in mind while choosing a domain name:
- Short is good. Short is easy to remember, and easy to type.
- Don’t use something that sounds just like something else that’s already famous. Be your own famous!
- Your own name is always a good fall back (www.yourname.com comes with the added bonus of not trapping you in a box regarding the subject of your blog).
- Really think long and hard before purchasing a name that doesn’t end in .com. It’s the most professional looking, and you’re more likely to be taken seriously with a .com
How to start a blog: STEP 2 – choose hosting and install WordPress
Once you know exactly what your blog is gonna be called, and you know what you are gonna write about, you need to choose a hosting company. If you are going to have a profitable blog you need to OWN your blog and you can’t do that for free. It doesn’t have to be expensive though! (I talk more about why you need hosting in The Truth About Starting a Profitable Blog – where I also talk about why all those “how to start a blog in ten minutes and make $5000 in 3 months” posts you’ll read are a little… misleading.)
My blog is hosted with Siteground and I am VERY happy with them. (I used to be hosted with Bluehost, and you can read about why I switched here.) Site ground has fantastic support, and they will hold your hand through the whole set up process if need be!
Bonus, purchasing hosting through my links with Siteground also includes your domain name. For free! (I very much paid for mine, because I did not realize that…)
→ Click this link to purchase hosting with Siteground, it will open in a new window (and then you can follow along with me here if you want). The pictures below are for demonstration and are NOT LINKS.
1. Choose your hosting plan
SiteGround has three plans (they all have a great discount through any links on this page!):
- The StartUp plan is perfect for people with one website that are just starting out.
- The GrowBig plan is a great value for money offer, including the option for multiple websites and the SuperCacher that greatly improves a WordPress and Joomla website speed.
- The GoGeek plan is perfect for people with e-commerce and larger sites, or more geeky development needs like staging and GIT integration.
All plans include free domain registration.
Step 2. Register Your Domain
Step 3. Review and Complete
Unlike many other hosting providers Siteground’s advertised discount applies to any of the initial periods chosen during the sign up process. This means you are able to purchase hosting for one year at the (advertised) low introductory rate. With other hosts, you have to commit to three years to get the low rate, which means you actually have to put out far more money when you start your blog.
This makes Siteground the best option if you want to try blogging for a year without committing long term – or if you just don’t have three years worth of hosting expense to spend right now.
I strongly recommend that you pay the extra 12$ for domain privacy. That way, you can keep your… privacy. (Otherwise, your information will be entered into the whois data base and will be searchable.)
Step 4. Contact Siteground support via chat and have them walk you through installing WordPress on your new domain.
No, this isn’t cheating. There is no reason you should have to figure out how to do it by yourself. This is exactly how I did it, and having someone hold your hand through the process is one of the many benefits of a paying to be with a great company.
Step 5. Log in to your WordPress dashboard
Go to your website and login. In your internet address bar enter www.yourdomainname.com/admin. This will take you to your login page, (and WordPress is already installed on your website, because you did that with the customer support people).
Once logged in you will see your WordPress dashboard.
(You’re gonna get really comfortable here.)
Congratulations – you own a website! Your own little piece of the internet, where you will create something amazing. And, if you do it right, you will inspire readers, connect with new friends and make money while you’re at it.
It’s gonna be awesome.
NOW you get to do the next step – and it’s the fun part. Choosing and installing a theme. Your theme is the way your blog looks. It’s the fonts, the colors, the layout. There are THOUSANDS of free and paid for themes to choose from. It’s mind boggling actually!
Oh, and there is a little bit of picky house keeping we can do in WordPress before we do anything else too.
So let’s get started on that… shall we?
Looking for other blogging tips? Check out these posts:
Choosing a Theme You Love
Creating Your First Blog Post in WordPress
5 Very Important Things to do Before You Start Blogging
WordPress Settings, Permalinks & Google Analytics
How to Install WordPress Plugins
7 Ways to Make Your Blog Look Less Like a “Newbie” Blog
Printable Blog Organization Binder
Affiliate Marketing: Can YOU Really Make Money With It
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