Are you a passionate writer? Do you have a story that needs to be told? Do you want to generate passive income for your family? Starting a blog might be your answer.
Blogs are no longer just for the "professional writer." They are for the thinker, the designer, the mother, the craftsman, and the teacher.
In 2013, I decided to start blogging and building my personal platform. It's now become my full-time career and it's allowed me to make a living from the things I am most passionate about.
Sadly, I see many people not chase their dream because they either don't know where to start or the "setup process" is too complex.
But it's not. Below I have outlined an easy step-by-step guide to getting a domain, setting up hosting, and installing WordPress in 10 minutes or less.
There are many ways to start a blog, but you will get the most control by using self-hosted WordPress blog. This is what most serious bloggers use. This is what I use for many of my personal websites.
IMPORTANT: The first step for setting up a blog is buying a domain and setting up hosting. If you are not sure about the difference between hosted and self-hosted WordPress, I found this helpful infographic that explains it well. My verdict: stay away from WordPress.com. It's limiting and does not allow your blog to scale well.
To Get Started I'll Walk You Through A Few Quick Steps:
1. Getting A Paid Hosting Account (don't worry this will be cheap)
2. Picking A Domain Name (You Get One Free)
3. Setting Up Hosting
4. Installing WordPress
5. How To Install A Theme
Step #1: Buying A Domain Name
The domain name of my blog is StartupCamp.com. That’s where people find me on the web. Choosing a good domain can be tough. Your domain can either be your name or a branded domain like mine. Luckily, the hosting company I will recommend in step #2 provides you the ability to pick a domain for FREE (regularly $11.99) when you sign up.
Step #2 Setting Up A Hosting Account.
This is where your blog will “live.” This is a server in the cloud (i.e., a remote computer), where you will rent space to install the WordPress software and manage your blog. It’s far easier than it sounds. Stick with me.
There are hundreds of hosting services available. However, based on my experience and research, I recommend Bluehost. I believe it is the best option for most people for the following several reasons:
- Bluehost is large and well known.
- They offer excellent customer service (located in the US).
- Their packages are highly affordable. If you sign up with the link below, I've actually locked my readers a $3.95 per month fee + a free domain. Which is incredibly cheap.
- Their service provides extremely fast page load times.
- Bluehost is very easy to use.
ACTION STEP: Click HERE to buy your domain and signup for hosting with Bluehost. I have provided a visual guide of the steps below.
Bluehost Step #1
Visit This Link (the same as the one above) and Click "Get Started Now" button.
Bluehost Step #2
Choose your plan.
Bluehost Step #3
Choose your free domain name or bring over your current domain. Both are very easy processes.
Bluehost Step #4
Place your order and pay for your plan.
Bluehost Step #5
Once you've logged in, you will be taken to your Bluehost dashboard where you can install WordPress (the software that runs your blog) in a few simple clicks.
Bluehost Step #6
Click the the green install button.
Bluehost Step #7
Choose the domain you just registered or the one you brought over.
Bluehost Step #8
Check the "Show advanced options" box and fill in the title, username, and password. Your title will be the name of your blog (mine would be Dale Partridge). The username and password will be what you use to login to the backend of your blog (your WordPress dashboard).
IMPORTANT: Save this information somewhere where you won't lose it. You will need it for step #10
Bluehost Step #9
Bluehost will install WordPress on your server and let you know when it's complete.
Click the "View Credentials" button on the top right.
Bluehost Step #10
Click on "Admin URL" (located below the green box) and enter your WordPress login credentials from step #8. This will take you to your WordPress dashboard. Your WordPress dashboard is where you will do almost everything on your blog. From writing articles to changing design.
This is your WordPress Dashboard. You can either begin blogging or upload a new theme for your blog. I would recommend purchasing a new WordPress theme at Themeforest.net. At ThemeForest, in the navigation go to "WordPress" in the upper left section of the page. Then choose your theme type and begin exploring thousands of themes. After purchasing your theme from Themeforest, you will return to your WordPress dashboard and click "Appearance" > Themes > Upload a New Theme. Here you will upload the .zip file of the theme your just purchased.
Lastly, you will then follow your theme's setup features provided by the person who developed your theme. This is where you will upload your logo, change colors, add pages, and more.
Congratulations! You have officially setup your blog. This is only the beginning of an exciting journey for you. If you have any questions or issues please leave a comment below. I try to check my comments daily.
Now, Let Me Teach You How To Create An Income As A Blogger.
Though this article is an honest recommendation of a service I do believe in (and use personally), I do want to disclose that I receive an affiliate commission (at no additional cost to you) if someone chooses to take my recommendation. #TruthWins