If you are here, it is clear that you need to set up a blog. Truth is, this is the right time to get your content online to the audience because chances are high your competitors are already doing it.
The world is rapidly changing and it is up to you to adapt quickly to the new trends. This article features the easiest and quickest ways to start blogging. To start a blog you just pick the name of your blog, register the domain, and then set up hosting.
Pick a Name for your Blog
Let me cut to the chase here, if you are thinking of starting a blog, you already have an idea of the name. Many blog names are inspired by the niche in which they belong or the name of the owner. In fact, the best way to name your blog is choosing your name, e.g. Neil Patel with his neilpatel.com or Syed Balkhi with his syedbalkhi.com.
If your name is taken, (there are a lot of people named Neil Patel), you can just choose a random name that is catchy like Pinch of Yu or Madeleine Loves.
Alternatively, you can mix your name + niche, e.g. Fabric Mike or Nomadic Matt or random name + niche e.g. Wright Dreams.
You can also just pick a blog name based on your niche. BBQPitStop.com if you have a BBQ blog.
Get a Domain Name
This shouldn’t be hard if you have settled on the name of your blog. For instance, you can go with fabricmike.com or nomadicmatt.com.
But you want to make sure the domain name is available. There are people who spent all day researching catchy domain names, buying them, and then reselling for a profit.
To register your domain, visit a domain registrar like HostGator, BlueHost, or DreamHost, key in the domain e.g. fabricmike.com and check if it is available. If it is available, pay the fee, and you are done.
But sometimes the domain you like might not be available, in which case the domain registrar will suggest several combinations revolving around your first choice option, for instance, fabricmike.org, or .country.
If you don’t like any suggestions, then go back to the drawing board and continue brainstorming a new blog name.
Generally, the name available is influenced by the top-level domain (TLD). Examples of these TLDs include the popular one .com, .edu, .game, .hiphop, .net, .green, and .org. The price of a domain can range from $1 to a million dollars. It all comes down to the uniqueness of the domain length, name, as well as brand potential.
There is another option if you miss out on your first name option and can’t come up with an alternative.
You can look at aged domains or domain resellers who flip domains for profit. Here you might be able to find a domain that relates to your blog that you can buy.
One thing you need to know is that the domain you buy is not yours forever. So make sure you read through the terms and conditions of the domain purchase contract before you pay.
Many domain registrars tend to reserve the right to cancel your domain for whatever reason, but mostly if you use it for illegal activities or any purpose considered unacceptable, like spamming.
Some contracts feature a clause that allows the domain registrar to revoke your website name for absolutely no reason, with the implication being that the name belongs to the registrar and not you.
Moreover, nearly all domain registrars reserve the right to implement any changes to the terms and conditions of the registration without letting your know. With that in mind, make sure you read out the registration agreement before buying.
Pick a Hosting Provider
Next, you want to buy set up hosting for your blog once you buy the domain name. You are spoilt for choice here, but we will talk about just a few of the top web hosting companies namely BlueHost, WPX, Hostinger, HostGator, SiteGround, and DreamHost.
Ideally, you want to register your domain with the company you buy hosting but you do not have to do it that way.
Looking for a free blog will be tough to do if you really want to build a niche site. You will at least have to pay for hosting and the domain name. Sorry, no free domain names, they all cost money but thankfully they are cheap.
Let’s take a look at how you can set up hosting with each of the above-mentioned hosting companies.
Bluehost tends to appeal to beginners since it provides the necessities to set up hosting for a niche WordPress site.
They offer 24/7 live chat support, the price starts at $2.95 per month as well as you get a domain that is free the first year and an SSL certificate at no cost. You can start a blog in just a few minutes on Bluehost.
To get started, click “Get Started” on the Bluehost home page. From there, pick a name for your blog, but if you already have a domain, just key it here and then follow the steps to ensure your DNS is pointed to Bluehost.
You can actually register your domain right here and you can get it for free if you buy your WordPress hosting account.
After entering or registering your domain, you can now fill in your personal details, after which you can choose a hosting plan.
Basic shared hosting is usually priced at 12, 24, and 36-month terms. But the longer the term the lower the monthly rate, so rather than going for 12 months, consider purchasing a 36-month plan.
Bluehost also offers hassle-free upgrades to a dedicated server or VPS hosting accounts if you don’t want a shared hosting account.
There is an array of offers when you sign up, including Domain Privacy, which I would highly recommend. Domain Privacy is a premium service that enables personal data to be stored privately on WHOIS databases.
They also offer new customers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Once you have filled in your personal details and chosen a hosting package, complete the purchasing process by clicking “Next”.
From here, you will be asked to enter a password for your web hosting account. You can create a new password yourself or enlist the services of the Password Generator feature to create a secure password.
Log into your account and get started with your new successful blog!
Installing a WordPress Blog
Bluehost has made it easier for you to set up your WordPress blog and start blogging. Truth is, you can build a new site using a bunch of other website builders including Weebly, Wix, Joomla 2&3, Drupal 6&7 among many other CMS.
Bluehost will provide you with some great free WordPress themes for your website, but you can skip this step if you want.
If you don’t like the free themes You can buy a theme you like. Once you know what theme you like you can install any WordPress themes you like into your WordPress site and start editing your new WordPress blog.
To use WPX to set up hosting, first, you need to sign up with the company. Go to the WPX Hosting home page and choose Pricing and then WordPress hosting.
That link will take you directly to pricing plans where you can choose a package you like. Since it is a blog, you can start with the Business plan. Click Get Started and choose between a Host in USA and Host in the UK.
Next, select the time zone for your blog.
Select I Need a New Domain + hosting and choose a name for your domain for your new WordPress blog.
If it is available, click Order Now. Leave the Domain Name Configuration settings unchanged. But you can extend your domain period to up to three years.
Click Continue to choose the pricing plan.
WPX Hosting is a little bit expensive compared to Bluehost at $3/mo. But you can choose a monthly billing cycle to split your costs.
Click Continue and complete the sign-up process by clicking Checkout.
Log into your WPX Hosting account and choose WordPress hosting. Choose the Websites/SSL option and click Add New Website on the Websites list. This is one of the most reliable hosting providers on the market.
In Add New Website, select Top-level Domain in the Type dropdown section. Enter the name of your domain in the field and click Create Website.
Click Install WP to install your WordPress site and click Install to add WordPress on the Website. Your website is now up and you can configure it by installing a WordPress theme and a few plugins.
WPX Hosting plans come with an email that allows you to send and receive emails using the address linked to your website domain.
The first step, register your domain with Hostinger and pick a suitable hosting plan. Hostinger offers three types of hosting plans. We recommend going with shared hosting.
Shared hosting comes with a variety of useful tools to get your website started, including weekly backups, FTP/File managers, 1-click installer, and domain registration for free among many others.
Once you Add your web hosting plan to the cart you will be sent to the instrument panel where you will find a configuration box to complete your web host purchase.
Set up your web hosting by clicking Setup to connect your domain with web hosting.
Next, install an installer for WordPress to complete your setup. Now you can begin to manage your website through the WordPress admin area.
Go to yourdomain.com/wp-admin where you will find your WordPress dashboard and fill in your information. Using the WordPress back end you can edit and update your website.
Register your domain with HostGator or if you don’t have a domain, you can use a free domain that comes with gator Website Builder. Just type “find a new domain name” in the box and see if your first choice name is available.
If you have a domain already, you can just connect it with your HostGator website using the “connect it here” button.
Next, create your account using your email address or connect with your Facebook or Gmail accounts. Choose a billing cycle and then enter your payment details and you are good to go!
Once you have created your account, you can now choose a template for your website. HostGator features over 200 expertly-designed free templates.
HostGator comes with an easy-to-use blogging feature. Just choose the “blog” tab from the left sidebar of your admin panel and then click “start a blog”.
SiteGround was founded in 2004 in Bulgaria and is used by more than 2 million domains today. It offers shared hosting, dedicated servers, cloud hosting, and email hosting as well as domain registration.
To set up hosting with SiteGround, go to the company’s homepage siteground.com and choose a hosting plan.
There are three hosting plans to choose from including the Startup plan, GrowBig plan, and GoGeek plan.
I recommend a StartUp plan for your blog then you can upgrade later as your traffic grows.
Register your domain or export a registered domain. And the click Proceed.
Review and complete your order.
The process of building a website on SiteGround is pretty easy and fast. You can use Site Builder where you can transfer your website or migrate your WordPress site using the WordPress plugin.
You can also install WordPress under Managed Website.
Start by signing up for a hosting plan with DreamHost and register your domain. Just like many hosting providers, domain registration is included for free with a one-year DreamHost hosting plan.
You can choose shared hosting for your blog as well as a month-to-month billing cycle or annual billing cycle. As always, the yearly billing cycle will save you some extra bucks so I would recommend you go for this payment plan. However, if you want to taste the waters, you can go for monthly options or if you feel more confident with your website, go for a three-year payment plan – it is the best value for money.
Once you pay for your plan, you are now good to go! Your DreamHost account is now set up and you can access your dashboard where you will find your account details as well as manage other setups. For instance, you can register a domain or set up emails from your dashboard.
Next Step is to Install WordPress.
On the left navigation panel, you will find One-Click Installs. Here you will install your WordPress website within seconds and once the installation is done, log into your WordPress and start customizing your new blog site and creating new content.
How to Set Up Email on Hosting
You can create and add email addresses to your hosting account where you can receive and send emails. Just locate emails in your account and click to add a new email account and then fill out personal information and create an email. Most hosting companies provide an unlimited number of free email accounts using your domain.