You are going to be so glad that you came to my website! So you want to know how to start a blog online? You came to the right place, because I won’t leave you wondering on what you should be doing next.
The only thing I’m going to ask of you is to be patient with me because I’m starting this blog right now as well. So as I do each step I’m going to write it down and tell you what to do.
When I first started out blogging I didn’t realize all the steps that I needed to do and where to find each step. I literally was jumping all over the place trying to learn what to do next and spending too much money trying to figure it out.
I’m going to show you step by step on what you need to do to start a blog.
At its most basic beginning, starting a blog involves getting a domain name, web hosting and usually free blogging software (ie WordPress.org).
I’m going to list each step out as an “action step” or something to think about before you proceed to the next step. All you have to do is click on the link in each step and that will take you to an article showing you what to do.
Keep checking this post, because as I write each step a new highlighted link will be there. If it’s not highlighted then I haven’t written it yet. As I’m writing I might write some more helpful articles that you can find in the category section on the sidebar.
So this is how to start a blog online. Your action steps are:
- Do some researching to see if you should start a blog, figure out what you want to blog about, why you want to do it and if you really like blogging.
- It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with some blogging words and blogging mistakes so that you can understand blogging more.
- Figure out/ research who your target audience is most likely going to be because that might affect your writing style and your colour theme/branding.
- Think about your branding because it might affect your domain name, colour scheme and other areas of your blog.
- To simplify things, in order to start a blog, you basically need a “Domain name” + “Web Hosting” + “A blogging platform/software” = A blog. You can choose to start a free blog or one that you pay for/own. I pay for mine so that I own it. If it is a free blog then you don’t own your blog. The company that is giving you a free blog owns it. One of the nice things about having a free blog is that you usually get everything free like the: subdomain name (notice I said subdomain instead of domain) + free web hosting + a free blogging software. However, the only draw back is that if you don’t follow their rules your blog can be deleted. If you don’t back up your work to your laptop then you can lose everything. This happened to me so now I choose to own my blog instead of having a free one which can be deleted.
- Decide what blogging platform you want to use (especially if you want to earn money). Do you want to use a free account to blog? Or pay for your own blog? You should research and understand the differences between them (I’m using WordPress.org not WordPress.com, so my guide is mostly based on a WordPress.org blog).
- Choose a domain name but don’t buy it just yet!
- Get web hosting. A good reputable web hosting is Bluehost (affiliate link). Most web hosting companies will give you a free domain name and SSL certificate.
- Make sure your SSL certificate is installed first on your web hosting.
- Install WordPress. Now with your SSL certificate ready you can make it a https ready website!
- Set up your WordPress site to work properly before you use it. Do this by making a few setting adjustments to your blog.
- Install a WordPress theme that is mobile ready/responsive. Check how it looks on your phone, laptop, tablet and other browsers.
- Figure out how to create your navigation menus for your theme.
- Install some essential plugins.
- Figure out what colours you want to use on your theme/ your brand and make a logo. Refer back to the branding article for this one.
- Make a list of blog post ideas so that it helps you figure out your categories. This list will later help you build a content schedule.
- Figure out your website structure before you start writing (like categories, etc…)
- Submit your website to Google Search Console so that you can use that feature in your SEO plugin. Plus overall it’s a good idea to do it.
- Make an email address for your website so that people can contact you. You are going to need this in order to make a Contact Us page.
- Make sure that you have an SEO plugin installed before you write any content.
- Make your About Me page, Contact Us page and legal pages. Fill out the SEO meta data for those pages.
- Do keyword research before you write your first post/article.
- Write a helpful article to your viewer (step#2 should be done before you do this) with an average of 1,000 words with an amazing title, but don’t publish it just yet!
- Find an amazing image to go with your article/post.
- Before you press publish make sure to optimize your images that are with your article (for SEO purposes).
- Before you press publish make sure all your SEO meta data is filled in.
- Make a content schedule for your blog so that you have several ideas on what to write about each week so that you aren’t stuck.
- Install Google Analytics on your blog so that you know how much traffic you are getting to your website.
- As you write your blog posts make sure you start creating an internal linking structure to your articles. You can do this with manually or with a plugin.
- Initially set up one or two social media accounts for your blog so that you can use a social media share and follow plugin on each of your posts.
- Socialize and promote your blog posts on the social media sites carefully.
- Start finding ways to make money from your blog (like with ads, affiliate marketing, etc…)
- Figure out and make a freebie that you can give your readers so that you can start an email list.
- Find an email marketing service and figure out how to use it.
- Write some email messages that you plan to send to your readers.
- Set up an opt-in form on your website and test it out.
- Once you know more about your topic make a resource page for your readers with helpful resources.
- Keep an eye on your Google Analytics each month so you can see what is working.
- Keep learning about ways to make money on your blog.
- Keep learning about Search Engine Optimization and ways to get more traffic to your website.
- Don’t give up! Some days it’s going to be really hard, but if you want it bad enough you will be successful. Good luck everyone!
Phew! This was a long list on how to start a blog! I guess I should have called it “How to start a successful blog.” So now you know, but don’t get discouraged. Just keep coming back to this post and do each step.
It’s not a race, so don’t burn yourself out by trying to do it all too fast. Quality is always better than quantity. I wish you all the best on your blogging journey!
So what stage are you at right now with your blog? Let me know in the comments below.
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