So you’ve decided that you want to start your own blog. You might have a unique idea to write on or maybe you want to contribute to a particular community you like, e.g. health and fitness. You might want to cash in years of education or expertise in a particular field, all the while making a reputable name in the industry.
You can do all of this, right from your home. With the right guidance and simple to use, inexpensive tools, you can set up your blog in as less than as 15 minutes.
First, let’s talk about a few essential things you will need before starting the process of creating a blog on the web.
- A Workable Idea:
Blogs are hard work. You have to put in a significant amount of work, time and effort into your content and marketing before you see results. Therefore, if you start a blog on an idea that is too narrow, like guitar lessons; or too general, like Literature; or too outdated, like old technology, your blog would not fare well in the ever-developing world of the internet.You need something workable. And you need to have at least a fair amount of passion for it. After all, how long can you successfully work on a personal finances blog if you’re clearly a fitness enthusiast?If you don’t particularly have a passion for something, that’s okay as well. Today, a number of niches are highly popular and if you do it right, you can make money in their global markets. The top topics include blogging about how to make money, health, fitness and fashion, to name a few.
- An Internet connection
This is an obvious one but still worth the mention. Not only will you need an internet connection, it is also advisable to have access to your blog on the go. Our lives are busy; we’re always juggling work with other work along with our homes and social responsibilities. If you have a mobile-friendly blog, you can reply to comments in your spare time, maybe on the bus from work to home or in a café waiting for someone.
How to Get Your Blog Running in Under 15 minutes:
Is this possible? Yes, it is. You can create an initial, basic layout of your blog by following a few, easy steps.
Your blog will be up and running in 15 minutes, tops! Here’s how:
- Decide Your Domain Name
This is one of the pre-requisites of making a blog. You domain name is what a searcher would type into the URL bar to get to your website. It gives you and your blog an identity on the internet. For example, Facebook’s domain name is facebook.comChoose a name that’s unique and catchy but not too complicated. Your creativity comes into play here! People like funny or eye-catching website names. If you’re a personal brand, your name will make the best domain name. If, however, you have a unique name or difficult spellings, we suggest you customize it to make it easier to remember.Registering a new domain name costs about $10-$15 a year on average. Already registered domain names, which you can get from sites like GoDaddy, iPage, Namecheap etc differ in their rates
Domain name prices differ because of the a number of reasons such as type of extensions (.com, .net, .org etc), domain registrar and the time period for which you buy the name. For example, GoDaddy’s .com domains retails for $9.99 a year. iPage, on the other hand, sells their .com domain names at $14.99 a year.
Even though you can change your domain name after setting up your blog, it’s better if you don’t. Chances are you’ll end up confusing some of your audience.
- Web Hosting:
After you have a cool domain name, you’re going to need a web host. Web hosting is a service that lets you put up blogs that people can access through the internet. It makes you visible on the World Wide Web.A renowned web host can take you a long way. The best platform for you doesn’t have to be the priciest. Weebly or Wix, for example, are ideal if you’re a beginner and don’t have a lot of web development knowledge. Both start at $0.00 (yes, free!) a month.Another great platform is Bluehost, which is endorsed by WordPress. It has a reputable name in the industry and is currently offering a 63% discount on its monthly rate. Price starts at just $2.95.
If you’re looking to land big web hosting services like Google and Amazon, you’ll be paying around $45 for the former and $77 for the latter.
- Choose your Blogging Software:
Blogging software is an application that helps you create content, make web pages for content and run your blog. The good news is that there is a great number of popular blogging platforms that offer their services for free.
WordPress is probably the most popular of all blogging software. Most web hosting sites offer one-click installation of it. If you’re using BlueHost as your web host, for example, you can easily install WordPress. To beginners the site might be a bit daunting but it’s surprisingly easy to get the hang of. Most established bloggers out there prefer WordPress as their blogging software.Another more social platform is Tumblr. It’s easily customizable and is mobile-friendly. It offers both private and public blogs and bloggers can become followers of their fellow content creators. Tumblr is specifically aimed at micro-blogging and most Tumblr bloggers use audio/video aids with their blogs.Other reliable blogging platforms include Wix, Medium, Blogger, Joomla etc. Some of these platforms like Joomla and Wix offer their own web hosting services as well. Others require a separate web host.
All blogging software have some basic features. These include various templates to customize your blog with, tools to build your site with, security, storage etc.
After you have a domain name, web host and blogging software, you’re pretty much set to write your first blog post. There are a number of ways to optimize your blog and there’s something new to learn all the time. Remember that consistency is key to a successful blog. With the right tools, you can take your blog’s reputation to great heights.