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Did I wake up one morning and think, golly, I have WAY too much free time – I should start a blog? Of. Course. Not. This has actually been about a two year process of thinking of a blog, thinking it is crazy, researching, frustration, more thinking, more researching and finally took the leap to do something about my “plan”. You might have found yourself with a blogging interest as well.
Hopefully, I can trim your time between thinking about a blog to starting your blog in under two years. Following a few steps below you can have your own blog set up in no time. One great place to start is a 5-day free online crash course of creating a blog. This ONLINE COURSE is quick, easy and if, like me, you finish you’re as excited as I was – you go for it!!!
Then your next step is to figure out what you want to focus on. Education? Food? Desserts? Fitness? Hobby? Family? Travel? The ideas are really endless. Think about a name that you’d like like and see if it is available (just type it in to your browser and see if goes to an actual website!). If it hasn’t been claimed yet, you are one step closer! Now let’s get started!
What steps should you take to host your own blog?
- WEBSITE DOMAIN & HOST: You should have an idea of what you want your website name to be – then see if it is available (hopefully it is!). Then you need to have a host for your website. There are a few out there – I have been using Siteground and have nothing but amazing things to say about their customer service. If I could, I would be baking them cookies every day as a thank you to my many, many questions they answered. Easy to set up, they walk you through everything to get started. When you have questions or concerns – they help you every step of the way (in terms you can understand!). You can even get your domain registered with them and have them host your site for plans starting at $3.95 a month (that’s the plan I started with!).
- WORDPRESS: You need to use WordPress (.org NOT .com) platform to design your website. This will be provided by Siteground once you sign up. Are you like me and have no idea how to use WordPress. Thankfully there are many YouTube videos to help you along. Sometimes you need to go a bit old-school and grab a “textbook“. Easy to read and follow – and not too wordy so it allows for ease of note-taking. I have been using “WordPress for Beginners 2017” by Dr. Andy Williams – it is a must have to get your website off right.
- WEBSITE TEMPLATE: If you are anything like me, you have no idea how to design a website. Thankfully there are many free templates that you can use to get yourself started. I went the extra step and purchased my theme via Themegrill. There are also other themes “ready to use” and there are many other sites to help get your website the look you want. My advice is once you see a theme that fits your vision – pick that one.
- MAKE IT LOOK GOOD: Unless you are a photographer, you’ll need some pics to dress up your website. I love using Canva and while some photos are paid, many are FREE! Start designing Facebook, Instagram posts, find images to to help your words stand out!
- BLOGGING SCHOOL: The best way to find the ins and outs of blogging?!? I have searched through countless Pinterest links looking for the answers. Thankfully the answer found me. I was invited to a Facebook page to “Start A Monkey Making Blog”. From here this blogging community grew and two amazing bloggers who created this page – Pete & Heather – created a blogging course called “Blogging Blastoff“. This online, step-by-step course is a must-do to understand the quirks, tips and important steps to take for monetizing your blog. The best part is that once you are done with the course the support doesn’t end. They also have private, closed Facebook groups to continue support and you still have access to the course contents. It is worth every penny.
Welcome to the blogging world!