So, you want to know how to start a blog?
But you don’t have any idea about how to start and build a successful blog.
Don’t worry, we all have gone through this phase. Now, you don’t need to go through a headache. In this step by step guide, I’ll teach you about starting a blog without the need of any technical knowledge.
You’ll have your blog up and running in no time. You only need 3 things –
- PC / Laptop
- A Good Internet Connection
- Domain Name & Website Hosting ( .. we’ll talk about this later )
So, What is a Blog? ( If you don’t know already, I will tell you everything below )
In simple words, a blog is an online journal or diary which is updated frequently by people who want to write something about their field of interest. Blogging Loop is an example of a blog. Here, I write about blogging, SEO, how to make money online etc.
Making a successful blog is a dream for many people. In recent times, blogging is emerging as a great career choice. Blogging not only allows you to express yourself & help others, it also helps you to establish as an industry expert and even earn money.
Many bloggers are work hard continuously and generate a regular income from their blogs. The top bloggers earn in 5 to 6 figures monthly. However, the reason that top bloggers earn so much is that they’ve been working hard for many years.
If you start now and work hard ( + smart) then you can also become a successful blogger. Surely it will take time for you to learn about many things like – SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing, Affiliate Marketing, etc. You will also struggle a lot but it’s OK to struggle.
I will teach you how to start a blog in no more than 20 minutes. In the next 20 minutes, you would have started your blog, customized it and published your first post.
How to start a blog in 6 steps
I’ll tell you about how to start a blog and it will take you just 6 steps to launch your dream blog.
- Choosing the right blogging platform
- Selecting a Niche
- Buying domain and website hosting
- Installing WordPress
- Customizing the look of your blog
- Writing your first blog post
Choosing the right blogging platform
When you want to start a blog, the first step is to choose the right blogging platform. There are many platforms which you can choose from like – WordPress, Tumblr, Blogger, etc.
Why you should not use free blogging platforms?
Many of the blogging platforms allow you to create a blog for free, but it’s not good to have a free blog as you’re not the owner there. Your free blog could be shut down anytime without any warning.
Why use WordPress?
WordPress(.org) is an open source content management system (CMS) which means it is free to use. WordPress is by far the largest blogging platform in the world with more than 65% share of blogging platforms.
Many of you would be thinking what is WordPress? (Don’t get confused with WordPress.com or WordPress.org. We will be using self-hosted WordPress.org)
WordPress(.org) is used to create self-hosted blog. Having a self-hosted blog means that you own everything on your site – you are the real owner of your blog.
Although WordPress is free you must purchase a domain name and website hosting to make your site live and running.
Domain name means the name which you will be giving to your website. E.g., google.com or BloggingLoop.com. Website hosting means a space where your website is situated. Website hosting companies provides space on its server at some price. We’ll cover about this in Step #3.
Reasons to use WordPress –
- It’s free to use (you only need a domain name and hosting).
- It’s very easy to use even if you’re a beginner.
- Thousands of free themes & plugins.
- It’s easy to customize your blog as you want.
- You can design your blog professionally.
Now that you have decided that you’re going to choose WordPress as your blogging platform we’ll select a niche for you.
Selecting a Niche
Selecting a niche is one of the most important steps while starting your blog. Choosing a niche is one of the “secrets” for making a successful blog.
In simple words, niche means a specific topic on which you will write your blog like – entertainment, technology, marketing, health, dating, etc. It’s a simple concept – only choose the niche you are comfortable with.
If you’re a fitness freak, you can start a blog on how to do exercises, exercises tutorials rather than starting a blog about technology.
If you’re a technology geek you can easily create a blog about latest tech news rather than starting a blog about fitness.
Or, If you’re a marketing expert you can create a blog about marketing rather than starting a blog about technology, etc.
You should only choose a niche according to your interest If you are interested in a particular niche then you’ll surely have good knowledge about it and you’ll never run out of ideas to create high-quality content.
When you’ve selected your favorite niche, you are free to write anything about it.
Your niche should also have good searches and low-medium competition so that you can get some traffic. There should also be more than one way to monetize your blog.
Make sure that you only choose the right niche, if you choose the wrong niche you’ll feel bored (as you’ll run out of ideas) after sometime and it won’t be better than a regular job.
You should pick the niche, that –
- You’re very interested in
- You have got knowledge about
- Has good searches
- You can monetize in more than one way
- Has little competition
If you have found a niche for your blog that has all the features mentioned above then you’re ready to go to the next step.
Buying Domain & Website Hosting
Buying a good domain name and website hosting is very important for setting up your blog. Before we buy a domain name and website hosting for you, let me clarify the meaning of a domain name and website hosting –
Domain Name – A domain is the name of your website. In simple words, a domain name is the address of your blog – for e.g., BloggingLoop.com is the name of this blog. You can also use your name for your blog.
A great domain name should be –
- Easy to remember
- Easy to spell
- Short & sweet
- Should not include special characters
Website Hosting – A Website hosting is a service that lets you keep your blog online. Website hosting companies store all of your blogs files, images, and content on their servers. Without having a website host no one will be able to see your blog on the internet.
There are good & bad website hosting companies. It’s necessary that you go with a good website hosting provider. You shouldn’t go with cheap web hosts because “they suck”. They provide very cheap hosting but their servers are overloaded and with them, your blog will take way too much time to load.
I suggest you buy a domain name and website hosting only from SiteGround.
If you need a web host that can easily handle high traffic and also have 99% uptime, then SiteGround is the perfect choice for you.
Apart from 99% uptime, they provide features such as SSD storage, FREE SSL certificates, website migration, and 30 days money back guarantee. ( Our readers also get 60% OFF on Web hosting. )→ Click here to Claim this Exclusive SiteGround offer ←
First, Go to SiteGround
Click on WordPress Services
Select WordPress Hosting >> Learn More..
Choose your hosting plan
You have got 3 plans to choose from –
- StartUp – one website and 10,000 monthly visitors, 3.95$ / month
- GrowBig – multiple websites and 25,000 monthly visitors, 5.95$ / month
- GoGeek – multiple websites and 100,000 monthly visitors, 11.95$ / month
Register a new domain
Click on register a new domain. I’m guessing that you’ve found a great domain name for your blog.
Enter the new domain name. Then click on Proceed!
Fill your account & client information
Account Information –
Enter your email address & confirm your password.
Client Information –
After filling out the account information you’ll need to provide additional details like your name, country, company name, etc.
Enter all the information and then scroll down..
Fill your payment information
Now you have to enter your credit card details. You need to enter the card number, card expiration date, cardholder name and CVV code (secret number present at the back of a card).
Don’t worry if you don’t have a credit card. You can also make the payment from any international debit card.
Check out purchase information & make your payment
First, confirm the plan you want to purchase.
Then choose the data center which is the closest to your location.
SiteGround has 5 data centers located around the world –
- Chicago (USA)
- Amsterdam (NL)
- Singapore (SG)
- London (UK)
- Milano (IT)
The closer you’re to the location of a web server, much faster your blog speed will be.
The domain name that you purchased is a part of extra services that are offered.
If you want to make your information private then select domain privacy,
Buy SG Site Scanner if you’re too worried about your site safety. Else, there is no need to buy it if you can protect your site.
Click on I agree to terms and conditions. After that click on Pay Now!
Congrats, you’ve purchased your own domain name & hosting.
Now, there is no need to download WordPress software and get into the technical stuff to install it, SiteGround will do it for you.
You can sit back and easily install WordPress while having your tea (or coffee) by following the instructions given below.
#1 Login to user area
#2 Enter Login id & Password
Put your email id and password to login.. Which you created when filling out the account information.
#3 Setup your hosting account
Now, you have to setup your website. You have to choose from 3 options –
- Start a new website ( build a new site from scratch )
- Transfer a website ( they will provide free migration from another host )
- Don’t need help now
Select > Start a new website….
#4 Select a software
After selecting Start a new website.. you’ll need to select which software you want to install.
Select WordPress and then fill out your login details.
Admin email – (enter your WordPress login email address )
Username – ( enter your WordPress username )
Password – ( enter your login password )
Re-type password – ( enter your login password again )
.. and then click on Confirm.
#5 Complete Setup
Skip Enhance Your Account.
Click on I agree to terms and conditions
.. and then click on Complete Setup.
#6 Login to WordPress dashboard
Go to YourDomainName.com/wp-admin ( Replace YourDomainName.com with your domain name ).
Enter your username & password created above, and you will be taken to your WordPress dashboard.
Since we have passed through the hardest part of setting up your blog, we’ll now design and customize your blog.
Customizing the look of your blog
Now that you’ve installed WordPress, it’s time to tell you about WordPress blog basics. I’ll tell you about how to –
- Change the design of your blog
- Installing new plugins
As I said – it would take no more than 20 minutes to start a blog. You’ve already completed the most difficult steps. More than 80% of the work in starting a blog has been done.
Now we (you & I) will design & customize your blog together.
Designing your blog ( Layout & Themes )
WordPress uses design templates known as “themes”. These themes provide the look of your blog.
You can change the look of your blog by changing its theme. There are more than 2 thousand free themes available for you to choose from.
However, if you want your blog to look more clean and professional you should purchase premium themes. But the average cost of one premium theme is around 50-70$.
We’ll stick with free themes for now. You can purchase premium themes later after you have started earning money from your blog.
#1 Login to your WordPress dashboard
First, you will need to login to your WordPress dashboard.
This is the WordPress dashboard. From here you can edit anything on your blog.
#2 Go to Appearance
Move your mouse over the “Appearance” tab. Then click on Themes.
#3 Select your theme
Here you will see the themes that are automatically installed on WordPress.
Select one of these themes or click on “Add New” to find more themes.
Installing new plugins
Plugins are software that adds more functions to a WordPress site.
WordPress plugins make it easy for new users to add more features without knowing a single line of code.
Like themes, there are also thousands of free plugins for WordPress. There are also premium WordPress plugins but they also cost around 30-40$ on an average.
#1 Go to WP Dashboard
Move your mouse over the “Plugins” tab. Then click on Installed Plugins.
#2 Click on Add New
Click on “Add New” to install new plugins.
#3 Install Plugins
From here you can install all the free plugins available. Some of the must-have plugins are Yoast SEO, W3 Total Cache, etc.
Writing your first blog post
Now, you just need to write your first blog post. But you might be wondering how?
Don’t worry I’m with you and I will teach you everything. Now, I will teach you how to write a blog post –
#1 Go to WP Dashboard
Move your mouse over the “Posts” tab. Then click on “Add New”.
#2 Write your blog post
#1 Blog Post Title – This is the area where you will write the title of your blog post.
#2 Blog Post Content – This is the area where you will the main content of your blog post.
#3 Add Media – This is the option to add images/videos to your blog post.
#4 Publishing – This the area from where you can control how and when your blog post will be published/scheduled.
Feel free to write whatever you like. It won’t take you much time to learn about WordPress.
CONGRATS! YOU HAVE JUST STARTED YOUR OWN BLOG.
FAQs About Blogging
There are a lot of questions that new people like you want to ask about blogging.
Here, I have listed out some of the most frequently asked questions about blogging/how to start a blog –
Starting A Blog
How much will it cost to start a blog?
It will not cost you more than 80$ to 100$ to start a blog for the first time.
Which hosting should I buy?
You should buy web hosting from SiteGround. Why?
Because they are the best one of the best hosting providers. WordPress.org also recommends SiteGround.
How do I design my blog? Do I need to hire a web designer?
NO, there is no need to hire anyone as you’re using a WordPress blog. However, if you want to you can always get a web designer.
You can use free themes or purchase premium themes. There are many great themes available for WordPress.
Which are the best WordPress themes?
The best ones are premium themes as they are professional looking and provide great support. You should not use free themes as they are not updated frequently and can create issues for your blog.
You can purchase premium themes from Thrive Themes, StudioPress, Elegant Themes, MyThemeShop, ThemeForest.
How do I customize my blog?
Customizing a WordPress blog is very easy. You can easily do whatever you want from the admin dashboard.
Most of your work can be easily done with the help of WordPress plugins. You don’t need to worry about lack of technical knowledge.
Which are the best WordPress plugins?
There are many free and paid plugins available for WordPress. However, only some of the plugins are useful.
Thrive Architect, OptinMonster, Yoast SEO, W3 Total Cache are some of the best WordPress Plugins.
Creating Quality Content
How can I become a better writer?
Becoming a good writer takes time. Even if you’re not good at writing, continuously publishing new blog posts will keep you at practice.
“Practice makes a man perfect”, applies here too. When I started, even I wasn’t decent at writing blog posts. Writing comes naturally with time.
In which language should I write my blog posts?
You can use any language on your blog. A blog can be written in written in any language, whether it’s in your Native Language or in English.
When you’re creating a blog whose target is your local audience, then you should write in your Native Language.
According to me, you should write your blog posts in English. Why?
English is the most common language in the world. More than 1.5 billion people speak English. When you write your blog in English, you can target a global audience. People all around the world understand English.
What should be the length of my blog posts?
An average length or your blog posts should be around 1,000 words. In a research by QuickSprout, it’s shown that longer blog post gets more backlinks, social engagements and also rank better in search engines.
However, this does not mean short blog posts aren’t effective.
“A blog post is like a mini-skirt:
It has to be short enough to be interesting, but long enough to cover the subject.” – Content Marketing Institute
An ideal blog post should not be more or less than needed. If you can easily cover the subject in 1,000 words there is no need to extend it. But if you can’t explain your topic in less than 6,000 words, then it should not be less than 6,000 words.
How often should I update my blog with new blog posts?
How much regularly you should update your blog depends on your schedule and niche.
If you’re having much time to focus on your blog then it’s easy to publish new posts in a short span of time. When you don’t have much time to focus on your blog you can update it twice or thrice a week.
You should update your blog daily if you blog deals with news. sports, tech, entertainment. You don’t need to update your blog daily if your blog deals with fitness, motivation, personality development, etc.
What type of blog posts should I write?
There are many different types of blog posts that you can write about.
Some best types of blog posts that work are –
- Tutorial & How-to Guides
- List Posts
- Case Studies
Publish each type of blog post at a time & compare what type of post gets the most engagement. Publish more of the blog posts that get more visitors.
Right now, I’ve only told you about 5 kinds of blog posts, in future I’ll do a separate post on different kinds of blog posts.
Getting Traffic To Your Blog
How do I get visitors to my blog?
Getting visitors to a new blog is one of the hardest things to do. But don’t I’m with you, I’ll tell you ways to get traffic to your blog.
2 common ways to get visitors to your blog are through –
- Search engines ( SEO )
- Social Media
Search Engines – Search Engines are the best way to get targeted traffic for your blog. You can get traffic from Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. It’s kinda hard to get traffic from search engines.
Social Media – Getting traffic through social media is easy when compared to getting traffic from search engines. You can share your posts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter groups according to your niche. However, it’s hard to get targeted visitors from Social media.
How do I get organic traffic from search engines?
You can get traffic from Search Engines by doing Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ). SEO means optimizing your blog for getting visitors from Search Engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.
Implementing SEO on your blog is a hard task. The time it takes to get visitors from Search Engines is around 6 months. However, it’s best to focus on SEO in the long run.
Should I also use social media to get more traffic?
Of Course, Yes. You should use social media to get traffic.
It can be very useful when you can get visitors according to your niche through social media websites. Getting targeted visitors through social media is not so hard.
But you can get visitors by joining groups according to your niche. Help other people and give them a reference to your blog while solving their problems.