A blog can be a creative outlet. Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can start your fabulous self-hosted blog in easy steps.
* Disclaimer: This post contains Affiliate Links which allows websites to earn through those links.
How To Start Your Fabulous Blog
I. Choose your niche and identify your audience.
What are you going to write about? What are you passionate about? As a tip, think of the top five topics that you are interested in. These top five topics can be the starting point of your blog.
You might also need to get a clear idea of your Reader’s Persona. Who are you writing for? You might consider the following questions when you identify who your readers are. You must be very specific as to who they are. You cannot write for everybody. Remember, if you want to please everyone, you won’t standout to no one.
Identifying your Reader’s Persona
Are they male or female?
How old are they?
Are they married or single?
Do they have kids or no kids?
Where do they live?
What worries do they have?
What are the three things they fear?
Where do they hang-out in Social Media? Pinterest? Facebook? Instagram?
What are their values in life?
What websites do they often visit?
Why will they want to visit your site?
In creating my Learn With Teacher Ces blog, my target audience are stay-at-home moms who want to learn strategies on how to teach their young children at home. I want my blog to be informative, inspiring and just a happy place to read….for moms by a mom.
II. Choose a name for your blog.
You can use your own name and build a brand around your name or something related to your niche.
III. Purchase hosting and domain name.
Choose a company you want to host your site. I use Siteground as my host. You can start here.
Step 1. Choose your hosting plan
SiteGround has three plans and one can sign for any of them with a great discount through your affiliate link.
It is also good to make a recommendation for the most appropriate plan to your audience:
The StartUp plan is perfect for people with one website that are starting now. 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, on the other hand, is for people with e-commerce and larger sites, or more geeky development needs like staging and GIT integration.
Step 2. Choosing a Domain
Clients can choose to buy a new domain, or sign up with an existing domain. Siteground offers free website transfer, which is included for GrowBig and GoGeek plans.
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 is a good deal!
Another Hosting Provider is Word Press Engine
Namecheap also offers hosting plans for as low as $2.88 dollars a month.
IV. Install WordPress
Install WordPress. Once you have WordPress you can now access your dashboard. You can now start with your blog design and create new blog posts.
V. Install a Theme
Your theme is the basic design and layout of your site. You can use a free theme or invest in a premium theme.
Things to consider when you use a free theme: No cost, too basic, may look cheap, no support.
Things to consider when purchasing a premium theme: Your blog will look professional and more credible.
If you have a budget, invest in a Genesis Framework. A Genesis Framework allows you to build incredible websites with WordPress.
It operates as a Parent Theme where all the core website functionally exists. You would need to purchase a separate Child Theme to add styling and manage the design.
- It is search-engine-optimized (SEO)
- It follows WordPress security best practices
- It uses lightweight code which equals fast performance
- You are not “locked-in” with any one service provider
You can choose Themes for your Genesis Framework with Studio Press. Studiopress press offers a variety of child themes which you can choose from.
Here are samples of Studiopress Themes to choose from. It already comes with a Genesis Framework.
VI. Brand and Design
Get ideas from other bloggers, but DO NOT COPY. How do they brand themselves? Choose your style, colors, fonts and inspiration photos. Make sure that your branding and style elements are cohesive. Choose a blog header. You can design your blog header in Canva. Work on your Logo. A logo is not the same as a header. But you may choose to use the logo as the header just what I did on my blog.
VII. Set up your blog pages
The basic pages you need to set-up are the following:
A Disclaimer page will protect you, your rights, content, etc.
Terms and Conditions is a legal page on your blog. It basically states that you are not responsible for how people use the posts and information in your site.
VIII. Create other Social Media platforms
Go to various social media platforms and create an account. Use your blog name as the username and try to use the same username for all platforms.
IX. Set-up Google Analytics
Google analytics will keep track of your blog statistics such as traffic, page views, and where it is coming from.
X. Write your first blog post
When writing your first blog post, think of your title. What problem/ curiosity are you solving for your audience? Brainstorm your ideas. Make an outline and then next write a rough draft. What is your call to action? Identify your categories and tags. Add and design your images. Review and edit your draft and then publish!
You might also want to get familiar with Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This means that you have to identify your keywords so that Google can index you.
XI. Congratulations, you are ready to launch your blog!
You have done all the hard work and it’s time to go live! Start building content and write on your free time. Find out what works for you.
Welcome to the Blogging World!