So you’ve decided to write a blog, share your knowledge with the world, express yourself and make money? Whatever the reason, I’m sure you don’t need an explanation what is a blog, who is a blogger and what is blogging. You simply want to avoid the mistakes that rookies make. Then grab a coffee and let’s get started ASAP!
Do you know that blogging has many benefits that are not evident from the first glance:
- You become a better writer.
- You become an expert in your field and learn a lot.
- You get to know a lot of awesome people.
- You build a significant online business and earn money.
- You help others and have fun while doing it.
Now, there are basically four steps to starting your first blog:
What’s it gonna be? A personal, business, non-profit, political, private, sports or how-to, tips and reviews blog? Which type do you want to become?
At first, you’ll need to validate the success of your blog:
- Choose a topic that you are most passionate about.
- Research the niche you’ve chosen, whether it has any potential by selecting 5 key words and checking the volume of monthly searches.
- If the niche has a decent volume, it will be a nice choice for your blog.
There are a lot of different free blogging platforms such as Blogger or Tumblr. But if you decide to go with them, your blog name will be – yourname.tumblr.com or yourname.blogspot.com. You don’t want to look inexperienced, right?
I strongly recommend to choose a self-hosted platform like WordPress that will allow you to use your own web hosting space and name for your blog.
WordPress is one of the biggest platforms in the world, with countless plugins and add-ons and almost infinite ways to design and layout your blog.
- It is the easiest and simplest way to build a site.
- It has tons of free themes and layouts, a massive support forum in case you get stuck.
- Your blog will be insanely fast and it’ll also look perfect!
- People can interact with you easily.
- Your content can be shared, commented on, and so on.
Your domain name is the unique address of your blog on the Internet by which you will be known online. So you definitely need to make a careful choice. You can end it with .com, .co.uk, .net, .org, or virtually any other web suffix. The only rule is to make your name exclusive, easy to remember and type.
Once you buy a domain name, you need somewhere to store your files. Sign up for the hosting account to host your new blog online.
There are tons of different hosting options out there for your brand new blog. As a newbie you’ll have to look for these most important features in a host:
- Price. The cheapest offer you see isn’t necessarily the best idea. Compare prices.
- Tech support. What kinds of different ways you can contact them when you need support – email, phone, chat, and so on. Are they 24/7? The worst thing that can happen is for a website to go down, or having an email issue.
- Backup. Find out what your host’s disaster recovery plan is in case you mistakenly delete the entire blog.
- Uptime. Look for an uptime guarantee of 99 percent or more. The last thing you want your customers to experience is a blank screen when they type in your URL.
- Storage. Make sure that you have room to expand and grow on the host you choose. So examine your needs and the storage solutions offered by the host. Some services will offer you more space as your needs expand.
- Bandwidth. The bandwidth is the amount of data that is allowed to be transferred from your server to a visitor. Some services will offer unlimited bandwidth which is rarely actually unlimited. Make sure you know what will happen if you go over your bandwidth allotment.
- Emails and Applications. Make sure the host you choose gives you access to the server so that you can easily create new email accounts, make changes to server settings, etc. You might also have a need for additional applications. Your host should provide all that.
- Money back guarantee. Spend some time and read “Terms of Services”. This might be extremely useful once you decide that you want your money back.
- Reviews. Read reviews on the company’s service to see if people have had issues with customer service and support.
This list is certainly not exhaustive, but it covers the most common questions you are likely to have when choosing a web host. Here you can browse web hosting providers from around the world, learn from reviews, and ratings.
Now you are absolutely ready to become a well-known blogger!
If you might need any help along the way when setting up your very first blog, this info is greatly expanded in high details here: http://firstsiteguide.com with downloadable guides and videos.
What challenges have you met on your blogging journey? Don’t hesitate to share them in the comments! Also, let us know what hosts you’ve found reliable and which ones have come back to bite you.