Creating your first blog might be something scary as you don’t know where to start, you might not be aware of all the necessary steps and you’re afraid that you might do something wrong along the way that will compromise the whole thing.
It’s time to put your fear aside as it is quite simple and straightforward to create your first professional blog.
In this post, I will guide you through all of the steps necessary to create your blog, from choosing a web hosting, to the first blog post.
By the end of the post, you will be able to create a new blog from the ground up on your own.
If you have any problems during this tutorial you can always contact me here and I will do my best to help you.
What you will learn
- How to choose the topic of the blog
- How to choose a hosting company
- How to choose a domain name
- How to install the blog software
- How to configure the blog
- How to navigate around the software
- How to write your first blog post
- What are the next steps
There is a lot that you will be learning, so let’s get started.
How to choose the topic of the blog
This is one of the simplest and but also one of the hardest steps. Choosing the topic of the blog that you are about to create is often quite hard as there are so many things you can write about.
I always say that you should not worry about the topic in regards to the potential revenue as you can make money with literally any topic that you can come up with.
It is way more important that you choose something that you are familiar with and know about. Why? Because you will write articles about it almost every day, hopefully forever.
Just think about something that you really like and know a lot about. It could be cars, houses, computers, video games, anything. Try to avoid general concepts and ideas and narrow your topic down as it will help a lot with competitors on search engines. These are called niches.
So for example, if you really love home decor, you could write about kitchen or bathroom decor. Writing about a specific niche is not required as you can have as much success or even more with a broad topic, but it will be much easier to get visitors if you get specific.
Now that you have decided what you are going to write about we can continue to the next step.
How to choose a hosting company
Owning a blog or a website is like owning a physical store. You need a space for it to be located and accessible.
Although a blog is not something physical it still needs to be saved somewhere. This is where the hosting companies come in.
After so many years in the industry, I’ve tried dozens of different companies. Some really bad, and some so good that I still use them today.
In my opinion, the best and most affordable one is Bluehost, I’ve been their customer for more than 4 years for my own personal projects, and that’s the one I’m using in this guide.
It’s pretty simple. They have been around since 2003! So they are not going anywhere anytime soon. They host more than 2 Million websites worldwide. And they have the best customer support I have ever tried! They will solve all the issues you may have in no time at all.
Bluehost gives all of their customers over 150$ in free advertising on Google and Bing, which will come in very handy. Oh, and the best of all, a WordPress one-click install that will save us hours in configurations!
They have a money-back guarantee so there is no risk involved.
They will also give you a free domain name with your hosting plan, something that usually costs more than 10$!
Once you’re on the Bluehost website, just click on the big “get started now” green button to get started.
Now you will be presented with the 3 different hosting plans that they offer. Just choose the basic one as it is more than enough for your current needs.
Now it’s the part where you have to choose the domain name of your blog. Bluehost will provide this domain for free for you.
The domain should be related to the content that you are going to write on the blog. Using the kitchen decor example that I previously used, a blog about that topic could be called kitchendecorideas.com.
Just choose one that fits for you.
Now that you chose the domain name and clicked on next, you are presented with a form to create your account.
You have to fill this form with your personal information. Make sure your email address is correct because this is where all the relevant information about your account is going to be sent.
If you scroll down a bit you’ll see a package information section. This is where you choose how many months of hosting you want to purchase.
To get the best deal you need to buy 36 months, and I advise you to do as you will save so much money. Although, if you don’t feel ready to invest so much right now, you can still get a pretty good price for the 12 month package.
Some of the options come already checked, and you can uncheck all of the options.
And for the last step, you need to put your credit card information on the payment information section.
Make sure you have checked that you agree with the terms of service and hit the submit button.
Congratulations! Now you have a hosting plan. You are now ready to start blogging.
Before you can access your account you are asked to create a password, for that click on the blue button saying “create your password”.
Just choose your password and you are good to go.
To go to your control panel go to https://my.bluehost.com and log in with your account credentials.
You are now logged into your hosting control panel.
How to install the blog software (WordPress)
We now need to create the blog itself because we only have an empty hosting.
We are going to install WordPress, which is a blogging software.
But why WordPress?
- It’s completely free and open-source
- Has been around for many years
- Frequent software and security updates
- Thousands of themes and plugins
These are just a few but important reasons why I always use WordPress when creating a blog. And today is our lucky day as Bluehost offers us the ability to install it with just one click!
To install WordPress go to the “website” section on your Bluehost control panel and click on “Install WordPress”.
After clicking on the button you will be taken to an external website called MojoMarketplace.
Now click on the green button “Install”.
You will be prompted to choose the domain name where you want to install the blog, choose the domain you have previously registered, which will be the only option you have.
Leave the second box empty since you want to install the blog on your homepage and not on a subfolder.
Click on “Show advanced options” and change the blog name to something that you want. Don’t worry as you can change this later on. Next choose your admin username, password, and email. You will use this account to log in your blog, and you cannot change the username later.
Make sure you have both options checked and click “Install now”.
Now you just have to wait a few seconds for it to install on the host.
Congratulations! Your WordPress blog is installed!
Navigate to yourdomain.com/wp-admin and log in with the credentials you chose during the installation process.
This is your blog dashboard where you manage everything and create posts.
On your left, you have the menu. I would recommend first for you to navigate a bit around and get to know the software. Don’t be afraid to try and mess around with things.
One of the first things you should change is the blog theme. Go to “Appearance” and then click on “Add new”. All of these themes are free so just try them out until you find one that you enjoy.
For many of my personal blogs and sites I created for clients I use the X Theme from ThemeForest. It’s a paid theme but it’s the best one that I’ve ever used. It’s so good and versatile. I’d recommend you to use this theme if you can pay for it. But don’t worry as the free themes are also very good and a great starting point.
How to write your first blog post
To write your first blog post navigate to “Posts” and click “Add new”. From here it’s very intuitive. Choose a title, create the content and add it to a category. Once you finish the article just click on “Publish”.
If you want a cheap but very good logo for your blog, check out Fiverr where you can get a custom one for just 5$! Fiverr is also my go-to place when I need custom things done for my blog when I can’t do them or don’t have enough time, such as programming and technical difficulties.
Wrapping it up
As you can see, it wasn’t as hard to create a blog as you probably taught it would be.
A lot of people earn a living blogging, and hopefully, you will be one of those people soon, just start. Really. Most people are stuck trying to find the perfect thing to write about, my advice would be to just start and improve over time.