So, one day you decided to become a blogger and found yourself a little bit frustrated because, at first sight, it seems complicated to start a blog. Actually, it is not so hard, and all you need to do is to take five steps:
- Choose a platform for your blog, register a domain name, and choose a hosting option.
- Use some simple theme to design your blog.
- Modify the way your blog looks to your taste.
- Choose the plugins needed for your blog.
- Write brilliant content that will be appreciated by your readers.
Here are more detailed step-by-step instructions that describe the main points of each step:
Domain and Hosting. First of all, you have to choose the platform for your blog and register a domain. Bluehost is one of the easiest and most functional platforms. Its basic price is $2.95 a month. The platform also provides strong online support for free via “live chat.” There you can ask your questions about starting a blog, and a support operator will guide you through the correct process. Also, you may easily install WordPress from Bluehost. It’s one of the most popular cms and using WordPress is really easy for blog’s content filling.
Theme. A theme will give your blog that special look and feel you want it to have. For those who are not able to code, a theme works perfectly and makes the design part of the work much easier. You need to purchase a theme once (it is not expensive), and you can use it for a lifetime. A theme consists of a Framework (the skeleton) and a Child Theme (the appearance):
- Framework. Among WordPress theme frameworks, Genesis is absolutely the leader. As the first half of your theme, Genesis provides a strong foundation for the Child Theme and manages the aesthetics of your blog.
- Child Theme. After getting your Framework, you’ll need to find the right blog design or Child Theme.
Modify Your Blog. When the steps with the domain, hosting, and themes are set up, you’ll start to modify your blog to make it look the way you want it to. A Feedburner account may help people to subscribe (use a squeeze page) to the blog via email and RSS. Also, explore how to use Google Analytics as a great tool to track the statistics of your blog.
Plugins meaning. There are plenty of useful plugins for your site. At the very beginning, you may need to add the ability to share your posts easily via various social networks. Simple Facebook and Twitter share-button plugins may help you. They are very easy to install, it will take you only a few seconds.
Write Compelling Content. Finally, you are able to start writing your content. Before you begin though, it is a good idea to first complete the pages About Page and Contact Page, add your logo and a picture of yourself (because it is important for people to identify your blog with your personality, not your logo). Now you are ready to start writing your content, and be sure to update the blog regularly.
Reasons for starting a blog
Before you start, you should define the reason why you need a blog. You should answer the question “Why,” firmly and remember the purpose of it throughout the time you maintain your blog.
Three things that shouldn’t be a reason for starting a blog:
1. Money. It is always a bad idea to start a blog only because you want to earn money. It should be about something you love, something that fulfills you from the inside and then it may bring you income.
2. Notoriety. The pursuit of the goal of being internet famous is a ridiculous reason to start a blog. Make your content compelling and organize your blogging well and you’ll get your thankful and loving readers. Just have some patience.
3. Traffic. You should care about the quality of your traffic, not quantity. For these purposes, you need to follow search engine optimization rules. For instance, using SEO crawler can ease this process, improve your audit, identify potential errors and improve website work.
It is true that you may get full-time income from your blog, and you may become internet famous, but it shouldn’t be the goal itself. Be passionate about the things you write about.
19 tips for bloggers
Find Your Niche. The best blogs are about the things their owners are passionate about. Have you already found your passion? Is it music or cooking? Or maybe raising children? Or gardening? Great! Write about that! Write about the things that make your life fulfilling. Something you have a unique perspective about. Follow your passion, and it will bring you more. Enjoy your blogging time!
Find Out Who Your Perfect Readers Are. It is important to understand who your readers are. Depending on the niche of the blog (whether it is about art, babies, or sports) the main audience will vary. Consider the reasons your readers follow your blog and tailor your content to them.
Add Value. The purpose of your writing is to add value to the lives of your readers’. They read your blog to get something valuable for themselves. This is the key to obtain and retain a great, strong audience.
Be Original. The reason your blog should be written even when there are other blogs with similar topics is you. Your perspective, your vision, your own experience is the value you add to the topics on your blog.
Be Interesting. Write brilliant, unique content to make people want to share it with others.
Be Yourself. A secret of being interesting is telling your own story. The trick is to skip all the uninteresting parts and tell only the things that matter, things that are valuable. That is the key to great storytelling: throw away 99 percent of boring and common content and leave only 1% of unique and bright.
Be Honest. Your vision has to be at the core of your blog. If you don’t really care about the things you write, if you are not passionate about it people will see through it. Keep your content alive, keep it honest.
Transparency. It is not the same as honesty. Not every detail of your life should be added to your blog, though you have to be honest with your readers. Always be honest and add transparency if it really brings some value to your content.
Time. Better learn to spend only the necessary amount of time on your blogging. Otherwise, it may affect you negatively. Your blog should fulfill you, not exhaust you.
Vision. Blogs that are designed according to a clear author’s vision of how it should look like are more attractive to readers. All the content works better when it is arranged properly. If you have your vision of how your blog should look – great! Go forward and give it that unique, awesome look. If you are not sure about your vision and you are sure only about the content part – don’t worry! Consult with a good designer and get his or her help to add that perfect look to your blog.
Find Your Voice. In some time, try to find your unique voice that attracts your readers and gives your blog that special feeling.
Use “We” Instead of “You.” It is a good tip to use first-person plurals as it is much more powerful. “We” instead of “you” may make negative statements less edgy. “We” and “ours” influence readers more strongly and comfortably as they are inclusive.
The Best Time to Post. It is not a big deal about the posting schedule. Try to keep it consistent, but don’t get too obsessed with details.
Social Media. It is a good idea to keep Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages to connect people to your blog, but you should not get too troubled about it. First of all, concentrate on your writing and later on the promotion.
Ignore Criticism and Negative Comments. Concentrate on the purpose of your blog and your true readers. Don’t pay much attention to the negativity of ignorant people. Just delete their comments and ignore them considering they don’t like your blog.
Research. Spend some time researching the topics you write about. Leave some links and make sure you post only proven facts.
Keep It Simple. Minimalism is a great way to design your blog. Leave only the necessary things and get rid of anything that does not add value.
Picture. People should identify your blog with you. Put a picture of you on your page. It will work better than using only a logo.
Live Your Life. Your blog is about your life. Not about all its aspects, but it is about what you are. So don’t forget to live your life. Keep all the important things like work, family, health, exercises, and relationships in order. Enjoy your life and write about the things that you enjoy the most!