Last updated on August 1st, 2018 at 06:40 pm
As the new year approaches, more and more people will come to the Internet in search of tips to help them start a blog. Have you ever thought “I want a blog?”
So you start searching the internet and thousands of results come up? You end up clicking on the first page and grab your coffee and start reading.
After that page, you casually scroll to the next one and then the next result. By the time you’re done, you’ve spent several hours online trying to figure out how to get started.
Pick Up My Ebook Beginners Guide WordPress
I’ve written a step-by-step guide that will take the guess work out of trying to start your blog. I’ve compiled everything into a nice little book that will help you get your first WordPress blog started.
Yet you still have no clue how to start a blog. By now you’re starting to think that you’re not cut out to be a blogger. After all, everything that you read online sounded like a bunch of jargon that makes no sense to you.
If you have thought “I want a blog” and you’re ready to get started, because you want to share your passion with the world and in the process make some money, then I am going to share the exact steps you need to take.
I do believe that there is enough space on the Internet for anyone who wants to create a profitable blog. Before you get all excited about starting a blog. You need to know that it’s NOT going to be easy.
A Quick Story
I still remember the first first time I sat down to start my first self-hosted WordPress blog. It was a nightmare. It took me over 8 hours to set my blog up. The reason that I chose WordPress was that everywhere I read, everyone said it was extremely easy.
Well, WordPress does come easily to me now. But I’ve been working with it for over 8 years. Like anything the more you practice the better you get.
That’s why I share my beginner WordPress tutorials with you. I know that you don’t want to spend hours trying to figure things out on your own.
You don’t have that kind of time. So I’ve made it easy for you to learn the things that I struggled with when I started my very first WordPress site. Plus I also share my journey with you about taking this blog to a full-time income.
My hope is that you’ll be able to use it as a resource to help you grow your blog.
I Want A Blog But I Don’t Know How to Begin
You’ve decided that you’re ready to move forward and start sharing your passion with the world. I understand we all have our own amazing unique stories, why not share them with others?
In return, we can monetize our blogs and hopefully make some money in the process.
So How Do I Start?
This is where you decide if you’re going to invest in a self-hosted blog or use a free platform. I know that you’re probably considering starting for free.
After all, it is scary investing in a blog when it hasn’t actually made any money. Nor do you know if it actually will. After all, this is your first blog and you have a long road ahead of you.
You’ve heard so many stories about how many people fail with their first blog. Heck, I’ve failed before and I am not ashamed to admit it. Failing is a part of the process and you shouldn’t be afraid to fail.
Start on a self-hosted WordPress blog. You’ll have so many more options when it comes to themes and plugins. I know this doesn’t mean anything to you now, but it will later (I promise).
Yes, WordPress comes with a little bit of a learning curve. Remember my story, I told you that it took me over 8 hours to install my first blog.
Well, I’ve got you covered, I have created a page just for beginners like you. My tutorials keep blogging simple, even if you’ve never touched WordPress before, I know you won’t have a problem following along. Here’s the page you need.
Choose A Topic
I have no doubt that you have a blog topic in mind. My advice would be to choose something that you’re passionate about. You’re going to be writing about it for a very long time.
The last thing that you want to do is choose a niche that you think might be fun to blog about. Then realize a year down the road, you don’t know anything about it.
Blogging is hard work and it’s important to start with something that you’re passionate about or know a little bit about.
When I started my very first blog several years ago, I started in the warts niche. I had no clue what I was talking about, I had only chosen that niche because I had heard people say that it was an easy niche to make money.
Well long story short, yes the blog did make some money. However, I hated working on that blog. Whenever I worked on that blog, it felt like a chore. Now here I am several years later, starting over with this blog.
So don’t make the same mistake I made. Choose a niche that you love and want to learn more about. It’s the only way that you’ll enjoy blogging for the long haul. Here’s a post I wrote that will help you brainstorm a blog topic if you need help.
I’m Not Tech Savvy
I totally get you, before I started working with WordPress, I had only ever used the Internet to check my email and maybe play Solitaire.
It was scary to think that I wanted to set up a blog. I’d never done anything like that before. I wasn’t fortunate enough to be born in the millennial generation where they pretty much had a computer in their hand the day they were born.
Everything was new to me and let me tell you, it wasn’t easy.
Yet, if I can figure things out, I have no doubt that you will too.
What You Need to Start
Here is what you need to get your blog up and running without spending a fortune. You don’t need to go crazy and spend a ton of money.
Once your blog starts to grow and you are getting the hang of things, you can start investing in courses, tools, and training if you choose.
Buy A Domain
Once you’ve come up with a domain name, then it’s time to head on over to Instant Domain Search. It may take awhile to find a domain that is available. After all, there are millions of blogs online.
Don’t give up, you’ll find something. Of course, you could be like me and just blog under your name? I couldn’t come up with a creative domain name and I figured what the heck, I’ll just blog under my own name.
Plus when you choose to blog under your own name, you can pretty much blog about anything. This makes it easy if you need to pivot and turn later on as your blog starts to grow.
Buying the Domain
You can buy your name from any reliable domain registrar online. However, I use and recommend Namecheap.
I never buy my domain from the same place that I buy my hosting.
Choosing Your Hosting Account
Now that you have your domain, it’s time to consider hosting. Without hosting you won’t be able to tell the world about your new blog.
The hosting account serves you blog to the world whenever they type in the address. Think of hosting as your cable company or Netflix 🙂
Without it, your TV would be useless. You wouldn’t be able to watch The Walking Dead or Chicago Fire (my 2 favorite shows)
All you would be able to do is just watch DVD’s (do people still do that? )
I still have a huge collection of DVD’s that I purchased when I was in the military. Although, I can’t remember the last time I sat down to watch one.
Hosting Account I Use
There are literally hundreds of hosting accounts online. Many people are going to tell you that you should look for hosting accounts that offer you the fastest speed, the best uptime, and the best security.
However, to you that probably means nothing. What you’re looking for is something that is not that expensive and has awesome customer service. After all, you don’t want to be waiting forever just to get a question answered.
That’s Why I Recommend
I personally use and recommend SiteGround. I moved this blog from HostGator when it was about 2 months old and I haven’t looked back.
They have great customer support and the best part is that they are reasonably priced. You can read my review here.
I believe that they will set up your first WordPress site for free when you join. If they don’t, don’t worry, I’ve written a step-by-step tutorial that will make the process easy for you, check it out here.
I know, I know, it’s hard to pay for 3 years of hosting when you don’t know if you’ll be doing this in 3 years.
Why Do You Want to Blog?
Are you thinking about starting your blog because it’s cool? Maybe you want to start your blog because you’ve read someone’s income report online?
Yes, it’s possible to make money with a blog, many people have done it. However, just because they have done it, doesn’t necessarily mean you will.
It’s going to take a ton of work and you have a huge learning curve ahead of you. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t make money with your blog.
It just means that it’s going to take time.
I started this blog because I want to walk away from my WordPress freelancing business. As I get older, I realized that while I love working with WordPress, but all I did was create a job for myself.
My goal is to turn this blog into a full-time income so I can put money aside for retirement and travel and enjoy life.
I no longer want to be answering to clients or chasing down clients just to get paid.
Your story is probably different than mine. Maybe you want to earn a part-time income or want to help your significant other leave their job?
Heck, maybe you want to leave your job when your blog starts making more money than your job.
Well, it’s possible, but just don’t expect it to happen overnight. It’s probably going to take years to make that a reality. You have to think of blogging as a long-term strategy.
So If You Can Afford It
Go ahead and pay for your hosting for more than one year. Otherwise, you’re going to be sticker shocked when you see the renewal fees in a year from now.
At that point, your blog might be making some money, but chances are it won’t be making a lot.
Extra Things Not Really Necessary
Now that you have your domain and hosting, you could literally start using a free WordPress theme or invest in your own theme.
Related: I Bought A Domain Now What?
Personally, I recommend starting with a premium theme as it will be easier to work with. I use the Genesis Framework for this blog. However, I know that not everyone wants to get started with it as it does come with a learning curve.
Best Themes for Beginners
A lot of my clients love the drag and drop features of the beginner themes. Here are some of the ones that I have used for clients and they absolutely love them:
Both of these themes are great if you don’t want to bother learning how to use the Genesis Framework. Although, you will find some tutorials that I’ve written to help make the process easier.
What About Plugins?
I’ve written a post that will teach you everything you need to know about WordPress plugins. Don’t make the mistake of running out and buying every plugin that you read about.
Start with the basic free plugins and then if you want to later, you can invest in some plugins. Here are my 7 favorite plugins that I use on my blog.
Free Plugins to Start With
Install these free plugins at the bare minimum:
- Yoast SEO
- W3 Cache
- Akismet Plugin
- Updraft Plus
- Google Analytics by Insight
Of course, you can install any other one that you want. These plugins will help you add some functionality to your blog. There’s no reason to install a ton of plugins when you’re brand new, you just need the basics and then you can add more or change some out.
What About Blog Traffic?
One of the first things that new bloggers want more than anything is blog traffic. They want to know what they have to do to increase their page views.
If you are brand new and have never promoted a blog, don’t worry, you’ll learn as you continue working on your blog. Here’s a great article to help you get started.
How Do I Know This?
Because I did it to, heck sometimes I still find myself researching new ways to increase my page views. However, if you are on day one.
You’ve got a lot of work to do sunshine. You can’t expect traffic from day one unless you share your new blog with your family.
I hate to break it to you, but no one is going to know about your blog. Yes, I know you want to share it with everyone, but don’t worry, we’ll get to that later.
Right now, we’re just focusing on registering the domain and setting up your blog. Next, we’ll start focusing on the next step.
It’s important to not get overwhelmed with blogging because there is so much to do. You can’t do it all in one day 🙂
Now You Know What It Takes
If you’ve wondered I want a blog, but I don’t know how or where to begin, I’ve just given you everything you need to get your blog up and running today.
In fact, you could be up and running with your blog today. If you need a little more hand holding with WordPress, I’ve created a free 7 day WordPress course that will help you get your blog set up.
Starting Is Easy
Anyone can start a blog, even if they are not tech savvy. The hard part comes when you’re trying to grow your blog. It takes time and a lot of commitment.
That’s why I share what I am doing to grow this blog. It will help you get more page views and traffic. After all, a blog will never earn you money if you are not getting page views.
Final Take Away
There’s no joy like starting a blog and sharing your knowledge and passion with the world. In my opinion, there’s room for everyone.
Yes, it’s going to take a lot of hard work to grow your blog. You’ve got a huge learning curve up ahead. However, I am here to help make the process easier for you.
Plus I share what I am doing to grow my blog. Together, we’ll grow our blogs and turn them into a full-time income so we can pursue the life we desire.
Hand Picked Articles for You
- How to Avoid Blogger Burnout and What to Do Instead
- New Bloggers Struggle With these WordPress Mistakes
- Free Blogger Tools That Will Help Keep You Blogging
Why do you want to start a blog? What is it that you’re sharing with the world? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear your story.
Step-by-step tutorial on how to increase your blog traffic using Pinterest. You’ll also learn how to find low competitive keywords so you can start improving your SEO. I walk you through the process of finding low competition keywords to make sure that you are NOT wasting time writing articles that are too competitive. Pick up my JumpStart Blog Traffic guide to help you increase your blog traffic.
Recommended Blogging Resources:
- Free 12 Day Blogging Bootcamp
- Article about using Yoast SEO for optimizing your blog posts and how to do it.
- SEMRush Free Trial to Gather Low Competitive Keywords
- Quiz: Which theme is best for your blog?
- If you want to build an email list and send newsletters, I recommend ConvertKit (starts at $29)