How To Start A Blog

How To Start A Blog

How To Start A Blog

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If you are reading this, it means you are where I was almost 5 years ago.

I had no idea where to begin my blogging journey, or where it could lead me.  If you had told me that I would eventually become a freelance writer, I wouldn’t have believed you.  If you said that I was going to get hired and paid by companies for simply doing something I was passionate about, I probably would’ve laughed.  All I did know, was that I had an interest in writing.  It didn’t have to be read by millions of people; it was just going to be used as a creative outlet.

Staring at my computer, I thought, “Where do I even begin?  What site do I use?  Will it cost a ton of money?”

If I knew then, what I know now, I would definitely do things a bit differently.  This is why I am here to show you how to start your own blog, while offering advice based on what I learned from my own personal experience.

If you’re still unsure, or don’t have the time right this second to start your blog, that’s okay!  Just bookmark this page on your computer so you can easily come back at any time.

However, if you’re ready for something new….

Let’s get started!

Congratulations on taking this exciting step!  Maybe starting your own blog is something way out of your comfort zone; it can be a big deal!  I know it seems overwhelming at first, but if you have any questions at all, leave me a comment, or e-mail me (contact@athomewithjoanna.com) and I will help you along the way.

My Blogging Story

In 2013, I started my first blog.

When I went online and Googled “How To Start A Blog”, I was hit with an overload of possibilities.  There are so many websites you can choose to work with!

At the time, I was a college student who also had rent to pay.  It’s no surprise that I did not have the extra funds to spend on something I was unsure about.  What if I started blogging and I hated it?  What a waste of money that would be!

I understand.  No one wants to throw money out the window.

Financial reasons and my uncertainty are what lead me to starting my blog on wordpress.com.  I took the free, “easy” route into blogging.  I spent almost three years working hard on my website.  I learned a lot, however it was also full of wasted, profitable opportunities.  It was when friends began saying “I thought you were getting paid for this all these years!”, that I realized I could be making an income from all the work I had been putting into it.

Which Web Hosting Service To Use

This is where my first lesson comes in.  Even if you are unsure as to where this may take you, I recommend using a self-hosted WordPress site with BlueHost.  They are the most trusted Web Hosting Service, and for only $3.95/month, you get everything you need to create a profitable blog.

This includes One-Click WordPress Install to make things even easier for you.

Since I had used wordpress.com I had to teach myself how to transfer all of my posts, media, basically everything I had ever created to wordpress.org.  It was another learning experience, but one that could have been avoided if I went with BlueHost from the beginning.  Thankfully, BlueHost has made it quite easy for people like myself who learned these lessons a bit too late.  Transferring all of my work over to my new site went quite smoothly, but it added several steps that I could have skipped.   At $3.95 a month, even my college student self could have afforded starting a self-hosted site from the start.  Live and learn!

My experience has taught me that putting in a small amount of funding will take you far.  Even the cost of maintaining your domain (around $10-$15 per year) will be made back in no time with all of the available plug-ins BlueHost has to offer.  Domain?  Plug-ins?  What?  Let’s back up a bit and get you through the first steps.

First, go to Bluehost by clicking here.  You will see this page; click the green “Get Started Now” button

BlueHost

 

Then, you will select your plan.

BlueHost Select Plan

The basic plan is perfect for starting off.  I am still using this plan, but as you can see from the rates above, even the plus and prime plans are very affordable if that’s what you desire.

Choose your Domain

BlueHost DomainThis part can be fun and a bit hard, all at the same time.  You want to choose something that fits with what you will be blogging about, easy to pronounce, easy to type and easy to remember.  Don’t overthink it too much, but be sure it is something you love!

Next, enter your account information and package information.

BlueHost Account

For package information, click on the Basic 36 Mont Price at $3.95/month.  You will notice that the 12 Month and 24 Month plans are more expensive, so the 36 Month package is worth every penny.  It is so nice to not have to worry about renewing your package every 12 months.

At this point, there may be a few Pop-Ups that offer you even better savings; take advantage of them!  You can sometimes even get up to 60% off!

The next few steps include:

entering your payment information, and choosing a password. These steps are quite straight forward and are up to your own personal preference of course.

Once that is finished, you get to choose your theme.

BlueHost Theme

Your theme is how your website’s layout will look.  This can be changed later on, so don’t feel pressured to make your final decision now.  To this day, I still have fun looking at different themes.  You will find that your site is always evolving.  As your site grows and you learn more about how everything works, you may want to change your theme to better suit your site’s needs.

BlueHost will then help you install WordPress (remember, it’s One-Click away!).  You then get to build and launch your site.

BlueHost All Done

And that’s it!

Congratulations!!!  You have started your first blog!!

Remember, please e-mail me or comment if you have any hesitations, or questions.  I am here to help!    More blogging tips will be posted, so if you have any topics you would like me to touch base on, I am open to any and all requests.

If you just started your blogging journey, please comment below with a link to your new site!  I would love to see it and support you!

Happy blogging!