By Usman Raza
So you want to learn how to start blogging, huh? Here’s the good news. You’ve come to the right place!
There is loads of information available out there on the web, but every article you come across with tells you to do different things. So how do you begin? Where do you start? What do you need? Okay, calm down and just forget about those questions. We’ve made things easier and compiled everything in four easy steps.
1. Choose Your Desired Blogging Platform
Deciding which blogging platform to use is pretty much the first thing you should do. There is Tumblr, Blogger, and WordPress. But if you ask us, we’d recommend WordPress. It’s just the biggest among all blogging platforms created. With lots of plugins and add-ons available, you can easily layout your blog in less than 10 minutes.
Aside from the fact that it is the biggest, there are four other reasons why WordPress is preferred by many:
- It is free to use and easy to set-up.
- You have a multitude of free layouts and themes to choose from, so you will never run out of options.
- There are plenty of WordPress experts out there you can seek help in case you find yourself stuck on something.
- It is a platform that is designed for interaction. Any content you put up can be shared and commented on with ease.
2. Decide on Your Hosting Plan
It’s important to note that there are two versions of WordPress available to bloggers. WordPress.com is the free version that includes web hosting, and WordPress.org is free software you can install on your own hosting plan. Watch this video that explains this in more detail. In general, there are two major disadvantages to using WordPress.com (or Tubmlr or Blogger):
- You don’t own your domain.
- You might not be able to fully monetize your website.
If you are dead serious about blogging and you wish to generate a good profit from it, it may make sense to invest by using WordPress hosted on your own domain. The best way to start is to decide on a hosting plan.
Technically, there are three different hosting plans you can choose from – shared, dedicated, and VPS. If your blog is new, then a shared hosting plan is much better. But if your website is already getting so much traffic already that it constantly generates errors, then you can consider a dedicated hosting. If you feel that the price of a dedicated hosting plan is too much, a VPS hosting plan is your perfect choice.
At this point, you might be asking how much a domain name and a hosting plan is. Well, the answer depends on your hosting provider. Don’t worry though. You can still find a good hosting provider around $5 per month.
3. Start Customizing
Once you have chosen a domain and hosting plan, the exciting part of starting a blog begins — customizing your blog.
Let’s begin with the theme. With WordPress, you have the option to use a free theme or opt for the premium ones, which cost around $40. Either way, you can find something professional-looking or perhaps do customizations with a couple of clicks.
Just remember that when designing your blog, think of what you really want. Make sure it reflects you as the blogger and your focus niche. There is no point in talking about social media trends when your blog is designed for sports.
Another thing to keep in mind is navigation. Of course, your visitors want to have ease while moving around. If your website doesn’t satisfy that want, they will most likely leave. For a website that aims to gain profit through visitors, that would mean a very big loss. Therefore, make things simple.
4. Blog Consistently
This may be the last part, but we’re 100% certain that this only marks your beginning as a blogger. You may be equipped with knowledge about engineering or healthcare, but as a blogging newbie, you should make room for improvement.
Start by taking things slow. Know what niche you want to be known for. From there, you can craft relevant blog posts and share them through various online channels. Things will become easier from there, as long as you create interesting and relevant blog posts on a consistent basis.
Now, you are all set. Have confidence in setting up your blog. If something comes up, know that the Internet is your friend. You can easily find relevant articles that answer your questions and apply the solutions accordingly.
Once you’ve gotten into your groove with blogging consistently, spend some time making sure you get the most out of each and every blog post by optimizing it for search. And if you get hit by writer’s block along the way, try these tips for finding blog topic inspiration.