While most people used to joke about the ever-growing library of blogs out there—thinking there was absolutely no way the market could support even more voices hitting the web—we were clearly wrong to laugh. Why? Because the demand for blogs is rising just as fast as the production of blogs. So, if you’ve got something to say, you may as well start saying it! Here arethe top 5 steps to starting a blog.
1. Choose a blogging platform, domain name, and hosting option
So, you already know what you want to say, and who you want to say it too. But where do you say it, and what will that look like? Well, that is completely up to you, and to get your blog started it’s the first step you want to take. Generally speaking, most people (especially first time bloggers who are serious about their future as a blogger) will register their domain with a host, such as Bluehost. At under $3 a month, Bluehost works for most people and their budgets. When registering, you also skip the process of setting up a WordPress page, because Bluehost will do it for you. This takes care of your blogging platform, domain name, and hosting option all at once. Perfect! You may find cheaper hosting options, but always watch for the monthly or annual cost after the discounted period.
2. Design your blog
This section is all about how you want your site to look. This part can be really fun. Once you’veb completed step 1, you will get to choose from a huge number of themes for your website. Take your time browsing through them—see what pages each theme includes, and which pages you need/don’t need for your blog. Try to have the mission of your blog embodied in its design.
3. Modify the theme
Once you’ve selected your theme, edit it and make it your own. There will be tutorials on this, support teams you can call, and forums you can explore to figure out how to get your blog looking as unique as you are. Be careful to only customize within theme – don’t edit the theme files – in order to avoid upgrade problems. While you’re there, make sure you add a free google analytics account to your blog so that your stats (i.e. views, clicks, engagement, and general traffic) can be viewed and analyzed later. It’s a great tool if you are serious about your blog and want to see who your blog is reaching.
4. Select plugins
Plugins can be confusing but they don’t have to be. Start with something simple like adding an instagram, facebook, and twitter button on your blog so that your readers can find you elsewhere. Add a “share now” link at the end of each blog post so that your work can be shared by your readers and so that you get free advertising in the process. These small additions make a big difference but they’ll only take about two seconds to add incorporate.
5. Create your content
Of course, the most obvious. Now that your blog is all up and ready to go, you can start creating the content that you put the blog together for in the first place! Perfect. And don’t forget to add images to your posts to make them more interesting (try using free professional photos offered on sites like Unspalsh).