Starting a blog on WordPress is simple once you have the steps. Blogging is a ton of work, but the technical aspects don't need to be. In this post, I’ll show you how to get your blog up on the internet so you can start adding content to it. YOU GOT THIS!
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Choosing a Niche For Your Blog
Before starting your blog, you will want to spend some time figuring out what you want to blog about.
Don’t take this lightly because it is super important.
You want to blog about something you’re interested in of course. However, you also have to think about what other people are interested in.
You are not writing your blog for yourself. You need to figure out something you can help people with.
All businesses are built to help people with something. When creating your blog you want to solve a problem.
That problem needs to be something people are looking for solutions for. It also needs to be something people will spend money on.
What Should I Name My Blog?
Before setting up your blog, you need to know what you plan to call it. My blog is called A Pen and A Purpose. More importantly, my web address or domain name is apenandapurpose.com.
It can be kind of difficult to figure out what your domain name should be, but try not to let this slow you down too much. At the end of the day, it isn’t permanent and there are ways to change it if necessary.
I purchase all of my domain names through Namecheap; however, to make things super easy I am going to have you sign up for your domain name at Siteground when you are getting hosting. This will help you skip some steps.
A few thoughts on picking a domain:
- Purchase the domain for your name in case you ever want to use it. I own marlenalarson.com (my name) even though I am not really using it right now.
- If you don’t want to use your name, you can figure out a domain name by making it relate to your topic. Use some key words from your topic in your domain name.
- Your domain name can really be anything you want it to be as long as it is available. I recommend you try to get a .com (or if not a .com you could get a .org, .net, or .co but I would stay away from the other ones even though they are cheaper)
Once you have your domain name selected (and you know it is available), it is time to set up your WordPress site.
I am going to teach you how to set up your website on WordPress.org rather than WordPress.com. WordPress.com is free but is super limiting and will get in your way as your blog starts to get traction.
If you’d like to learn more about figuring out what to write, sign up for my free blog course here.
How Do I Start My Blog?
Now that you know you want to start a blog about a certain topic, you need to figure out how to get it on the actual internet. 🙂
When I was first starting my blog I found this really overwhelming because I had a hard time figuring out how.
This does not need to be hard. In fact, I just set up a different blog a few minutes before starting to write this article.
In this section, I’m going to discuss getting your blog onto the internet by finding a place to “host” your blog. I will then describe what to do once you get the host so you can start writing posts.
I’m going to skip a bunch of explanations and go right to the point. You are going to need a host and either already have your domain purchased or you will purchase it as you set up hosting.
A host is a company that essentially lets your blog move in with them. They give you a little piece of land on the internet.
You need to find a host that is reliable and as a newbie I recommend you get one with great customer service. That is why I recommend Siteground.
I’ve had my blogs hosted at Siteground for about 2 years and have never had downtime that wasn’t my fault. One time I deleted my entire blog by accident and had no idea how to get it back. That was pretty scary…but I just went on the chat and they fixed it for me.
The reasons I pick Siteground over some other hosts:
- The price is affordable, especially for someone just starting out. My recommendation is to start out with the smallest plan but purchase a full three years. So many people cut costs here and just get the one year, but I think that is a mistake because the price goes up after the intro rate is over.
- I deleted my entire website and they fixed it for me very quickly.
- They have done things for me that most other companies would make you pay for. All over their website chat, which is always available.
- Best customer service ever!
- They will even set up all of this stuff for you, so you could just go buy hosting and a domain at Siteground and contact them to set it up. Easy peasy. (Actually I had a blog elsewhere when I switched to Siteground and it was a complicated situation but they moved it for me).
What Hosting Should I Get on Siteground?
When I started out and was looking into this, I didn’t understand what plan to buy. The one on the left called “StartUp” is an excellent option for a new blog.
You don’t have to worry about the GrowBig or GoGeek options yet if you are just starting out. But, if you are interested in the differences, Siteground describes as follows:
- StartUp is great for those just starting out
- GrowBig is great for those with multiple websites and includes some speed enhancements. If you plan to have more than one website starting out, then I recommend the GrowBig plan. This is the one I currently have.
- GoGeek is for people with large sites or those who are more advanced and need complicated tech stuff 😉
If you plan to be in business for the long haul, just go big.
Some have argued that you should go for a shorter time period in case you want to switch.
This is a valid point of course.
On the other hand, with today’s prices I could sign up for three years for $142. If I only signed up for one year it would be $47 (note that I am using rounding to not include the cents).
The difference if I do in fact stay for three years is:
- Buying up front: $142
- Buying a year and staying an additional 2: $335
Publish Your Blog Online
Once you purchase your hosting, it is very simple to get your blog online.
If you purchased your domain on Siteground, you just log in to your Siteground account and select the My Accounts tab and then CPanel.
Once in your Cpanel, you will select “WordPress” under the Autoinstallers section.
When you click on WordPress, it will take you to a screen where you can automatically install WordPress. In the middle of the page, click on Install Now.
This takes you to page called Software Setup. You will choose your Installation URL, then write your Site Name (mine is apenandapurpose) and a description which is just a little few word thing about it. You can even leave the description blank if you want to since you can change that somewhere else later.
Select your username and password and save these since this is how you will log in to your site in the future. Scroll down and hit install. Then wait until it is done installing and you can go see enter your web address into your web browser and see if it worked!
Note: sometimes it takes a little while, especially if you are directing a domain from somewhere else (like Namecheap).
Yay! You Have a Website
That’s it! Your website is officially live. Siteground installed a theme for you and it is all set to go.
If you go back to Siteground and click on the My Accounts tab and then on the green Go to Admin Panel button next to your web address you will be able to go into the back end of your website where you create your posts and pages.
(The picture below references a domain name I chose not to use)
Use the username and password you created when doing your WordPress installation to log in.
For more information on what to do next, sign up for my email course on blogging below!
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Marlena is the blogger behind apenandapurpose.com, where she writes about using journaling for self improvement and reaching goals in life and business. Using her experience as a Licensed Psychologist with a Master’s in Business, she teaches people how to break through negative thoughts and fear to do what matters. For more about me read my about page.