Looking to start a WordPress blog? You have come to the right place.
Blogging is a medium of self-expression. You can share your ideas, knowledge, experience or expertise online. There are several reasons why people start a blog.
For most people its either passion, making money online or simply using the blog as a daily journal.
Blogging offers as a great platform to establish yourself as an authority in a particular niche which also boosts your credibility.
Benefits of blogging
For me, blogging started as a passion and has now turned into a full-time business. After I started blogging, it made a positive impact on my life.
The most important of change being growing mentally stronger and confident. I have acquired new skills which have made me grow and change my life for the better.
Here are some of the benefits of blogging:-
- Once you start blogging you will surely see a huge boost in your creative skills. Every blog post you write will increase your thinking and writing abilities.
- Blogging is simply fun and rewarding at the same time. You can share your thoughts and at the same time earn money.
- It is definitely better than the regular 9 to 5. You are your own boss. The internet lifestyle is craved by many and blogging is one of the roads that lead to it.
- When you’ll start your blog, every now and then you will face challenges. To overcome the hurdles you’ll learn new skills on a regular basis.
- Once you have a blog up and running and you have a reader base, you will experience the feeling of achievement which will motivate you to take it a step further.
- You may like to read- 7 Ultimate Benefits of Blogging
With that said, the next big question is
What are the basic steps to start a WordPress blog?
A self-hosted WordPress blog can be started in 4 easy steps
- Selecting a niche
- Getting a domain name and hosting
- Setting up and Installing WordPress
- Creating your first post
1. Selecting a blogging niche
To build a successful blog having a vision for the blog is of the utmost importance. A niche or a topic is something your blog is based on. The vision for the blog will be based on this topic.
The topic should be something that excites you and most importantly you enjoy talking about. It is not important to be an expert on the subject. The key to success is the willingness to learn with each passing day and passion.
It is easier to create content on a regular basis when you are passionate about something.
There are various themes that your content can be based on such as:-
- Food and cooking
- Real Estate
- Life Hacks
- Film and photography
- Heath and fitness
and many more topics
You can pick any of the topics. The key to success is providing a solution to a problem, an answer to a question or sharing a personal experience. That means anything that provides value to your readers.
2. Getting a domain name and hosting
The next step in the process is finding a domain name and hosting for your blog. Your domain name is the name of the blog on the internet. It is your brand name.
For example- the domain name for this blog is geekyplug.com and the brand name is GeekyPlug.
Naming your blog totally depends on your blog theme. The name and the theme has to be relatable.
There are chances, most of the simple domain names you find are already taken. And yes this can be a bit of a task but you need to get your creative juices flowing and use the below-mentioned tips to find the perfect custom domain name.
- The name has to be easy to type. Avoid using misspelled names. This makes the name confusing and there are chances you’ll be losing on traffic.
- Try to get a .com extension first. The reason behind this is simple. Most people associate brand names with corresponding .com’s. If the .com extension is not available then go for other extensions such as .co or .org.
- Avoid using numbers and hyphens in the names. It is very difficult to remember the names that have hyphens or numbers in them.
- Select a name that can be converted into a brand rather than a personal name. If the blog is a personal journal it is fine using a personal name.
- Stay away from using copyrighted material as using it can get you into a lot of trouble.
These tips will surely help you find domain name for your blog
Once you have selected the domain name its time to buy hosting for your blog.
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is a service that is used to post a website or a webpage on the web. Because of this service, internet users can view your blog or any other website online.
The domain name and web hosting are two inseparable entities. A domain name is used to find your blog ( it’s your identity) and web hosting is the service that will allow you to publish your blog online.
You can find tons of hosting providers online but I highly recommend using Bluehost.
Here is a list of few things Why I recommend using Bluehost–
- Bluehost is one of the recommended hosting providers by WordPress.org.
- Over 2 million websites are hosted on Bluehost.
- The support offered is 24/7 and is incredibly fast.
- They offer a free domain and SSL certificates with the hosting packages.
- Bluehost offers hassle-free 1 click WordPress installations.
Isn’t that great!
With that said its time to purchase the hosting and get started.
Open the Bluehost website, to visit the site click on this link and get a discount on your purchase. Click the green button that says get started now.
It will take you to a new screen where you need to select the hosting package.
Bluehost offers 3 packages Basic, plus and choice plus. I will suggest you go for the basic plan if you are a beginner and upgrade as you grow.
Select the desired package and the next thing you need to do is pick a domain.
You can claim your free domain right away or if you have an existing domain, enter the domain name in the box and select next.
Note- In case you already have a domain name you can always claim your free domain later. Also, if you choose to select the domain name later. Bluehost will provide you with a temporary domain name and you can pick a name later.
After clicking next, you are required to fill in your account information and sign up.
In the next section, you need to select the term of the package. Paying upfront for 2 or 3 years will be at a highly discounted price. But if you select a yearly package then also it is cheaper than most hosting providers.
The next section is package extras where you will find three additional options
- Sitelock security
- Codeguard Basic
- Bluehost SEO tools start
When you are a beginner most of the time, the budget is slim. If you do not want these extra features just uncheck the box in front of them.
But consider buying domain privacy so that you do not get spammed by telemarketers.
After completing the process till here. All you have to do is pay for the package. Bluehost offers 2 payment options-
- Through credit card
- Using PayPal
Once the payment is made, you will be taken to a new screen which will ask you to create a password for your account.
Click the create password button and enter your desired password.
You can use the suggest password option which will provide you with a safe and secure password. Hit the next button and you are done purchasing web hosting for your blog.
On completing this process you will receive the following in your email-
- Payment Receipt
- Login Information
- Activation link
Once you click next, on the next screen you need to click the login button which will take you to your hosting dashboard.
3. Setting up and Installing WordPress
When you click the login button the first screen you will ask you to select a WordPress theme.
You can select a theme from the available options or skip it.
If you select a theme, in the beginning, it does not mean you’ll be stuck with that theme forever. You can always change and update the theme of your blog later. We have compiled a
After you have picked the theme or skipped the step. The next window will have 2 options
- Start building
- Go to my Bluehost account
In the above image, you can see a warning that I encountered. It is important to know there are chances your website or blog will be on a temporary domain for a while. But you don’t have to worry, at times it takes a few hours for the domain name to show.
Note- If you have clicked go to my Bluehost account by any chance then you can either click back and it will take you to the above screen.
When you select the start building option, you will enter the WordPress dashboard which looks like this.
You have now entered the WordPress dashboard. Congratulations!
You can now enter the WordPress dashboard using www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin. (yourdomain is the name of your domain)
In the dashboard, you will encounter 2 options
Select the option that best suits you.
Once you have selected the option, on the next screen you have to enter the title and description of your website.
In the Site Title, enter the name of your blog or website.
For example- I will enter Geeky Plug in the site title as that is the name of the website without the www part.
Site Description will be a short and sweet explanation of your website. Remember site name and description can be changed later.
Hit the next step button and you will see a new screen that says Let’s Launch and you’ll be asked if you are going to update your website with blog or news.
And just click yes.
Now you’ ll have to select what visitors can see on your home page.
It totally depends on your requirements, if the home page will feature most recent news or updates or a static home page.
Following this, you will get an option to create a contact us page so that visitors can contact you.
But can skip this step and create a contact us page later.
On completing this you will get an option to connect the Jetpack plugin. This is a very important step in securing your website. I will highly recommend integrating the Jetpack plugin before going further.
Jetpack is a very popular WordPress plugin by Automattic. With the help of Jetpack, you can design and secure your blog and also grow your traffic. This plugin is free of cost.
But you can always connect the plugin later.
And finally, the process is complete. Congratulations you have created your first self-hosted WordPress blog.
Now before you start creating posts, we highly recommended you to create some important pages such as About, Contact, Disclaimer, and Terms and Conditions.
To create a Contact us page I highly recommend using WPForms. This is a multi-purpose plugin. Not only will it help you create a contact form but also will help you generate and capture leads which will help grow your blog.
4. Creating your first post
Finally, you can create your first blog post. Creating a post in WordPress is very simple.
It is similar to using daily routine applications such as Microsoft Word or Gmail.
Let me show you how.
On the left-hand side in the WordPress dashboard, you can see a tab that says Posts.
All you need to do is either click the post button or just hover your mouse over it and you’ll see an option that says add new, click it. You will see the below screen when you click post.
Once you have clicked the add new button you will be taken to the screen where you can create your post.
WordPress has a very user-friendly interface, you can easily know where you need to enter the title and body of your blog post.
Enter the title and write the body of the post. You can find the options to format the post right above the body section.
Once you have written the content click the preview button to see how the post will appear to your readers. If you are satisfied, hit the publish button which is right next to the preview button. You will find the option to preview and publish on the right of your screen.
And that’s it you have written your first piece of content on self-hosted WordPress blog.
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I hope this post has helped you in starting a self-hosted blog. If you have any queries feel free to get in touch via the contact page or social media.
Also, don’t forget to comment on what is the thing you most like about blogging share this post with your friends and colleagues.