Start a blog in less than 15 minutes
I’ve been blogging for over three years now, mostly as a passion and I have only became more professional in the recent months but never thought I’d end up making up a start a blog tutorial. I don’t pretend to be an expert but I often times find myself giving blogging advice to both bloggy and non bloggy friends that turn to be just the answers they’ve been looking for. That makes me really happy, I know I had a hard time getting a blog up!
So if you’ve been following blogs like this one for a while and flirted with the idea of expressing your thoughts, feelings and life experience, then you are ready to open a blog. And you’ve come to the right place. You absolutely need a blog whether you want to work from home, author a book, get more exposure for your existing business or just write your thoughts.
Fortunately you can be up and running in about 15 minutes with this start a blog, step by step tutorial I’m going to introduce to you. It took me 10 minutes when I had my other WordPress blog up and running and this tutorial is based on that experience. Why would I write about a WP blog instead of any other platform? Simply because it’s way more awesome than any blogging platform and if I had known that 2 years ago, this blog wouldn’t have had its start on Blogger but on the WP platform. Problem solved now as we fully transferred here to the beautiful WordPress.
Let’s get started with the basics on what’s needed to start a blog. If you are brand new to blogging and wouldn’t want to invest a little money in your blog then Blogger is the right place for you. But I would strongly recommend you think twice before taking that decision as if you are like me, you’ll find you are in fact way too passionate about blogging to keep yourself and your blog at a non professional level. The option I’d recommend is right below.
If you follow my start a blog tutorial do yourself a favor and open your blog on a WP platform. Get it to a professional level right from the beginning, you won’t regret your decision a bit. You totally get what you pay for and then some more. The following steps are exactly how I’ve built my other site Little Miss Fashion and I’m completely smitten with that place (and now with this place too) and the features I’m provided with.
This start a blog tutorial is not short but trust me, it’s really, really simple. To sum up what this tutorial is all about, by the end of this post, you’ll have a self-hosted WordPress site, the most popular type of site around. Note: All links will be opening in a different window for ease of reference to these instructions as you work.
How to start a blog – step by step tutorial
Step 1 – Start a blog: Find a host
A host provides server space for your site so others can find you on the internet. As I’ve mentioned, you could start a blog using a free service like Blogger, but if you can spare a little cash, I highly, highly recommend you opt for self-hosting. Trust me, you’ll be so glad you started out on the right foot. I am the living proof of that. I was lucky enough to get to experience both platforms and the self hosted is by far the best option.
I am using Blue Host on both my sites as I’ve heard great reviews about them and yes, they are all true! For starters, they make signing up and setting a WP blog with them a breeze, all you need to do is follow instructions on both their site and the e-mails they keep you updated with on each step completed.
Start by clicking here to go to Bluehost. Click the green Get Started Now button.
Step 2 – Start a blog: Choose a domain
Enter a domain name (your desired web address, like thelittlemissfashion.com as I did when setting up my other blog) on the left side under New Domain (see tips for choosing a domain below). Make sure .com, or the extension of your choice, is selected from the drop down menu beside it. If you’ve already registered a domain name somewhere else, enter it on the right hand side.
Tips for choosing a domain name
- Choose a .com if possible, it’s easier for readers to look for your site as everyone has a .com in mind when they’re searching for websites.
- Make it easy to say and spell. I got mine thelittlemissfashion.com to perfectly match my blog’s title: Little Miss Fashion.
- Don’t include hyphens, numbers, initials, obscure terms or confusing strings of words, that’ll only make it hard for people to find your website.
- If you’re not sure what to use, your name is ok to use as a last resort.
You can check a domain availability by using this tool
Step 3 – Start a blog: Enter your account information
Step 4 – Start a blog: Choose a hosting package
Under Package Information choose your Account Plan from the drop down menu based on how far in advance you want to pay. Please note you will be billed a year a time, but as you can see, it works out to a very reasonable monthly amount. I think that’s basically nothing, you get so much for your self hosted blog for that little amount of money.
Step 5 – Start a blog: Enter your billing information
Fill in your billing information, confirm that you’ve read the fine print and then click Next.
Step 6 – Start a blog: Skip the upgrades
On the next page you’re asked if you want to add any upgrades. I just skipped them all. Continue on to complete your purchase then check your email. You’ll find a welcome email from BlueHost with your control panel (named cpanel) login info. Keep this information for future reference.
Step 7 – Start a blog: Login to your cpanel
Go back to Bluehost and click the Login button in the top right corner of your screen. Alternatively, you can use the link to your cpanel received through the welcome email.
Step 8 – Start a blog: Install WordPress
Once logged in, click the WordPress icon under Website Builders.
Step 9 – Start a blog: Start the WordPress install
Next you’ll get to a window that looks like this. Click the Start button to begin the WordPress installation process.
Step 10 – Start a blog: Choose where to install WordPress
Step 11 – Start a blog: Enter your WordPress user info
Check the box next to Show advanced options. Enter your Site Name or Title (ex. Little Miss Fashion). Choose an Admin Username (do not use “admin” as your username) and password. These will be what you use to login to WordPress once it’s installed. Enter your email address (again, all site information will be sent here). Read and agree to the terms. Click the Install Now button.
Step 12 – Start a blog: Choose your Style
Step 13 – Start a blog: You’ve Made it!
Bonus – Start a blog: If you’ve used an existing domain on step #2
(If you registered a new domain in Step 2, skip this step.) Your existing domain will not display your new site until you change your nameservers wherever your domain is currently registered. The change will be pointing your domain to this new site.
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