Whether you’re an entrepreneur who want to have online presence for your business or just someone looking to build an audience for whatever online creative endeavor you may have to make money and grow, starting a blog is always a good idea.
While many people do so by making one through a blogging service, some want a more hands-on approach to have more control over their blogs. Starting a blog from scratch isn’t that hard, but it still requires a good bit of effort.
Decide on a Topic
Before anything else, you should have a definite subject matter for your blog. The design and content of your blog must be relevant to that topic so that there’s consistency in your blog. If you’re making a blog for your established brand, then that shouldn’t be too hard of a decision.
But if you’re just starting from scratch, then it’s best to pick a topic that you know best. Whatever you’re passionate about, you can have your blog revolve around it.
Choose a Domain Name
Upon having a definite topic for your blog, you should then come up with an appropriate domain name, either the name of your brand (if you already have one) or something short that’s relevant to the topic of your blog. Above all else, the domain name has to be easy to remember.
Once you’ve decided on one that you can stick with, buy it from a registrar, which can be the web hosting service you’ll build your blog in.
Find a Web Hosting Service
Choosing a good web hosting service can be tricky as there are lots of them out there and it’s tempting to just go for the cheapest one. The problem there is the cheap ones most likely don’t have the best uptimes, online security, and customer support.
That means your blog will be frequently offline and/or easy to hack, and you’ll find it hard to ask for assistance when something goes wrong. It may mean spending a bit more, but choosing a good web hosting service should save you from headaches in the foreseeable future.
Out of all the content management systems for blogging, WordPress is the most popular and the best for beginners as it’s easy to use, almost everything in it is for free, and there’s a worldwide community of other WordPress users to consult with.
A lot of web hosting services these days have WordPress auto-installation to do it for you. But if yours doesn’t, then you’ve have to install it manually, which isn’t hard if you have an FTP client like FileZilla or know how to use your web host’s online file manager.
Install a Theme
The default theme may not look too bad, but it’s still rather bland. You may want to perk it up with a better-looking theme, either from the theme library within WordPress, downloaded from a third-party site, or one you made yourself. Whichever you choose to use for your blog, make sure it is in line with the kind of content you publish and follows basic design principles like spacing between visual elements, proper use of colors, and so on.
Giving your blog additional functionality is always a good idea, and that’s where WordPress plugins come in. For instance, there are plugin packs like Jetpack and Yoast SEO that can give you lots of new features that the base WordPress installation doesn’t offer. Just make sure to install only the ones you really need so they don’t slow down your blog’s loading speed.
Create and Publish Content
Once you have everything set up, it’s time for the actual blogging. What you should look to put up are posts with original content relevant to your chosen topic and helpful to your audience that are published regularly with solid SEO. When you start to build up an audience, you should then look at the data on your analytics to see what kind of content is viewed more.
As much as possible, aim for evergreen content, which are posts that have a long shelf life and are helpful to most people who find it through search engine or on social media. That’s the kind of content that can sustain your blog.
There are plenty of details in between that you may encounter during this process, but these basics should have you covered for the most part. Starting a blog is easy, but maintaining it by getting into the habit of posting content regularly can be a daunting task. But if it truly is something you want to get into, it’s indeed a worthwhile pursuit.