Many people realize how profitable a blog can be. With so many online tools, it is now possible to easily create one. It does not matter whether you have the technological know-how or not; you do not even need to have coding knowledge.
All you need to do is take advantage of the resources on the online platforms, and in less than 30 minutes, you could have your blog up and running.
WordPress provides one such platform. If you would like to explore the potential of blogging, then read on for more information on how to start the process. Our article will help you avoid some common mistakes by giving you the correct steps to follow.
Advantages of Blogging:
For some people, blogging provides an outlet to their creativity; for others, it is a money-making venture. You can monetize your website and make passive income, while you do what you love, which is writing great content.
You will find many benefits to blogging including:
- The opportunity to develop your writing skills
- It is an excellent source of passive income
- It will look great on your resume
- You can share your knowledge with your audience
- It will help you network and build excellent connections
- Blogging is an excellent past time
Related Read: How Can I Be Benefited By Blogging?
Creating A WordPress Blog Page:
Starting a blog on WordPress is not a complicated process as long as you follow the correct steps. Some of the things you will need are a domain name, web hosting account, and time. Here are some things you will need to do.
1. Choose The Right Platform:
One mistake many beginners make is not choosing the right blogging platform. You have the option of WordPress.com and WordPress.org. While both offer great functionality and multiple themes and plugin, you are better off working with WordPress.org, which is expressly set up for blogging purposes.
It is also self-hosting which will let you have full control of your website. You can, therefore, customize as per your requirements by installing the relevant plugin and themes. You also have the option of monetizing the site by running ads, selling eBooks, doing affiliate marketing, among others, thereby giving you passive income.
The WordPress platform is free to use, and all you need to do is get the right domain name and web hosting provider. Use online tools to come up with names for your domain.
2. Look For A Web Hosting Provider:
You need a fast loading website, and WordPress recommends Bluehost as a hosting provider. You get an SSL certificate which will help keep visitor information safe. Anyone on your site will also get the Assurance that you take their safety seriously, which will be positive for you.
When you decide on the domain name and the web host provider, finish the registration process, and you’ll be well on your way to starting your blogging. Ensure that the password you pick is strong so that you do not give hackers easy access to your information. Avoid cliché passwords like your names, the kid’s names, among others because it does not take much to discover what they are.
3. Install WordPress:
If you opt to use the Bluehost web provider, the setup process is simple. When you finish the registration process, you will see a welcome to WordPress message meaning your blog is ready. One of the first things you should do is ensure that you are visible. Click on the settings icon then add your tagline and blog name.
Your site address should also be the same as the domain name, adding your email address at this stage will allow you to reset the password at a later date if you so wish.
Click on the ‘Coming Soon Active‘ button and then launch site.
If you are using WordPress.org, you will need to take control of most of the installation aspects. Decide on the plugin as well as the themes. You will find thousands of these in the WordPress store; some are free while you will need to pay for others. Follow the straightforward prompts, and you will be able to change the appearance of your website to the click of a button.
We highly recommend simplicity when thinking about your themes. A clean website will give a better user experience, and your visitors are likely to keep coming back. Activating the theme will install it on your site. You also get to preview the themes before picking the one you like.
4. Blog Content Management:
You can easily add blog content on WordPress. On the dashboard go to posts and then click on add new. Beginners may have difficulty using the WordPress editors, they, therefore, opt to type the content elsewhere, for instance, on Word, then copy and paste it onto WordPress.
The only problem is that you will have to reformat your content because it does not export well. You will spend a lot of time editing; the time you would spend coming up with content. The Gutenberg editor that allows you to add content blocks using the add block icon. The WordPress Editors are easy to use, and most of the features are self-explanatory.
5. Use Of Images:
Consider the use of images to break up the text and make the content more visually attractive. When there is too much text, people may shy away from reading your blog. You’ll find a lot of free stock pictures online on sites such as unsplash.com and pixabay.com.
Under no conditions should you use pictures that do not belong to you. You should also cite the source of the images, even if you are using the free stock images. Adding images is a simple as clicking on the featured image box, uploading and then save. Be careful about how big the pictures are because it will slow down the speed of your website.
One good tip is to compress the images, because resizing may pixilated the picture.
Only click on the publish button once you are satisfied with the layout and the quality of your content.
6. Plugin And Other Customizations:
Plugins allow you to add features to your website such as galleries, sliders, contact forms, among others. You have the option of using 3rd party ones or those that are on the WordPress platform. With over 55000 plugins to choose from, you will find that there is virtually no task you cannot accomplish.
There are many other plugins to consider for your website. Install the correct plugin like UpdraftPlus so that you guard against the loss of your content to hackers or a system malfunction. You also need to add extra levels security, and WordPress has security plugins like Sucuri. You can also increase the speed of your website by installing WPSuper Cache.
Related Read: 15 Best Blogging Plugins & Tools For WordPress
7. Improve Navigation With A Menu:
A visitor to your site should have an easy time navigating through your blog. You will get return visitors because they will enjoy the experience of being on your website. A menu will help with this functionality, and it is easy to create on WordPress.
On the dashboard, click on appearance, menu, and then create. You can then add the title and select the pages you want to appear on the new menu. Arrange the page by dragging the labels up or down. If you want to display it on the main header, check the primary Location box in the menu settings and then click Save.
8. Choose Your Desired Look:
You can personalize your WordPress blog by choosing the font you desire. Only need to do is download the right plugin like the Easy Google Fonts. You also have the option of changing the colors, menu, and homepage settings, among others.
You have complete control over the design of your website, and you need to learn how to use the customizer so that you make the changes as you wish.
9. Sharing of Content on Social Media:
One sure way of building traffic for your website is to put a link that uploads your articles on to your social media platforms. It is a simple as installing the right plugin; you can get this by typing in ‘social share‘ when you are searching in the plugin directory.
10. Custom Email Account:
A webhost platform like Bluehost will allow you to create a custom email account from your domain. The advantage is you get a more professional looking website. When you log in to Bluehost, click on the following – email and office, basic email, see options, then create your account.
Now click on email accounts > Access webmail. Once you confirm your credentials, you can now use your new account to send and receive messages. Add your email account information on your ‘About‘ page so that any email you get on your site will go straight into your new account.
11. Creating A Contact Form:
You will need a contact form on your WordPress site, which your visitors will use to contact you. Unfortunately, this is not an inbuilt feature on WordPress, and you will, therefore, need a plugin to upload it on your site. You can use the WordPress form Builder to achieve this functionality.
If you are looking for a free one, consider using WPForms Lite plugin. The process is as simple as clicking on the plugin, add new, search for WPForms, install then activate. You’ll then need to add a new page on the WPForms, to create your first contact form. Put in a name, click on the simple contact form, which WPforms will generate for you.
You have the option of changing the fields or adding new ones. Remember to save before exiting.
Now go back to the dashboard under pages, click on add new, and name it ‘contact.’ On the screen, click on the Add form button and select the form you had created earlier. By clicking on add form, you get a shortcode on your page, then save and publish. Use a browser to see what your contact form eventually looks like.
12. Setup Google Analytics:
You need to monitor the activities on your website carefully. You need to know how many people visit your blog, where they are, what they do once they are on your website, among others. By installing Google Analytics, you will be able to keep track of everything you want to keep a close eye on.
The best time to install it is at the very beginning; you will need a Gmail account to access the Google Analytics website. The tool is free, but you will need a website URL. You will get a tracking code, which you can then transfer to your site using a plugin like Monsterinsights. Make sure you configure the settings so that you can enjoy the use of Google Analytics.
13. Optimize for SEO:
SEO optimization is vital so that the search engines find it easy to see you. Visibility will get you more traffic on your site. You need to optimize for SEO from the very beginning. One of the popular plugin’s for SEO on WordPress is Yoast.
14. Monetize Your WordPress Blog:
You can make money by monetizing your blog. You can show ads on your website, set up an eCommerce store, among others. Use the resources online to give you more tips.
There you have it, a comprehensive guide on starting a blog on WordPress. Familiarize yourself with the platform to avoid any mistakes that may impact on your blogging. With so many plugins, there is very little you will not be able to achieve on WordPress. Best of all, the platform is free, and so are many of the plugins.