So you want to start a blog…. but you aren’t sure exactly where to start. When we first decided to start a blog a few years ago for our direct sales business we were completely clueless. We researched all the options, took a few courses about blogging and how to get started (which were NOT cheap!) and soon realized that it wasn’t as difficult to start a blog as we had thought. We found a few services and companies that had the features we wanted, a user friendly interface and fit into our budget and we’ve stuck with most of them for a few years now. If you’re wanting to start blogging, my best advice is to just jump in and get started. We kept putting ours off because we felt like we didn’t know enough or weren’t prepared enough – in reality we just need to get started and everything else started to fall into place.
Our current setup is a self-hosted WordPress blog hosted by Site Ground and today I’m going to share how to start a blog in under 10 minutes using the same setup. (We switched recently from Bluehost to Site Ground for the more affordable options and better customer service.)
First you’ll want to choose a platform for your blog. There are many different platforms out there – WordPress, Blogger and Tumblr are just a few of the more popular ones. For this tutorial we are going to walk you through setting up a self-hosted WordPress blog. A self-hosted site does have a small cost involved but it allows you to have much more control over your blog and will be easier to manage down the road.
1. Choose a Website Host
Since you are creating a self-hosted blog, you will need to choose a hosting company. For Our Little Slice of Heaven we use Site Ground. They offer fantastic customer service, an easy WordPress setup and their prices are great! Hop on over to Site Ground to check out their options.
2. Choose a Web Hosting Package
Site Ground offers a few different packages for their web hosting. Since you are just starting out, the basic StartUp package should work just fine. You can add any additional services or features in a few minutes.
3. Pick a Domain Name
This is my favorite part about setting up a blog! Choosing a domain name is such an important and exciting part of starting your blog. Remember to keep your domain name simple, easy to remember and consistent with what your blog will encompass.
You’ll choose your domain name and check to see if it’s available. You can choose from .com websites or many other domain extensions. This fee is going to be separate from your hosting fee. Your essentially purchasing your website “name” when you purchase your domain.
If you already own a domain name you can enter that here and will point your domain to your new site once it’s up and running.
4. Complete Your Purchase
Next you’re going to complete your purchase for your domain name and your hosting service. You can choose a 1 month, 12 month, 24 month or 36 month period. I always suggest the 12 month as it’s the best rate and you won’t have to worry about renewing it until your domain name also needs renewed.
You can also add extra services such as domain privacy or the site scanner. These are optional but I highly recommend them both.
5. Set Up WordPress on Your New Website
Once your purchase is completed and your account with Site Ground is created, you’ll want to head to the Customer Area to install WordPress on your new website.
You have a few options when setting up your new blog. You can choose to Start a New Website which creates a brand new installation or you can migrate a website if you are just switching hosting companies. (You’ll choose the first option if you are starting a blog for the first time)
Your next set of options includes WordPress, WooCommerce WordPress, Weebly and Other. These are the framework applications you are going to install on your new website. To setup a blog you’ll want to choose WordPress.
You’ll be asked to set up a log in for your new blog. This is how you will log into the WordPress dashboard for your blog.
Way to go! You have installed WordPress on your new website! Now you can visit the login page for your website to get started. Be sure to check your email where you’ll find your log in information for your new blog!
If you already had a domain name, here is the info on where to point your domain name so it will lead to your new website.
Site Ground support is only a phone call or chat box away too, so if you have any questions or any trouble with setting up your blog be sure to reach out to them! They have been so very helpful and patient with me as I migrated by website to their hosting.
Once you are logged into your WordPress dashboard, you can start editing your new blog. You can install a theme, made customizations and start blogging! If you need some really great options for WordPress themes, my favorites are Restored 316. They are all I have used since I started my blog over 6 years ago and I love them!
Be sure to share your new blog information in the comments below! I’d love to see what you create and share on your new blog!