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Before I jump in and give you a step by step breakdown on how to start a blog, I want to give you some reasons why you should start a blog.
Blogging has been a game changer for me. I was able to work with brands that I like, earn money through blogging and help other people to do the same, which is super fulfilling for me.
I have tried many side hustle before I started blogging. I tried selling things on eBay, I tried doing the translation work at home, etc. All the side hustles that I tried either need a large initial investment or need me to trade time for money (which means that moment I am sick and cannot work, I stop earning money). It is not ideal for me because I WANT IT ALL! I want money but not by trading all my time.
Is it possible? Absolutely! After doing some research, I realize if start a blog, then I can have it all, the lifestyle that I want! I find lots of bloggers who are making a full income. They work less than 20 hours a week and they travel around the world while blogging. There are bloggers who are even making 6 digits a year!
I have been blogging less than a year. I only work on my blog part time because I do have a full-time job. Although I am not making a full income through my blog yet, I do make decent money that can buy my husband and I a nice weekend trip. Blogging has made my life better! This goes without saying, my husband is also a blogger (plus full-time project engineer) because we know blogging improves our lifestyle. He has been blogging longer than me and he is earning a decent income as well.
Is it difficult to start a blog? You may ask. No! If you follow the below instructions, you can get a blog up in less than 30 minutes. You can start your blogging business for less than $4 a month! Come on, that is cheaper than a pint of beer. Think about the money you can make through blogging! All you need to do is to give up one beer a month and you can start a money making business today.
Here is how you do it:
Step 1 Get a domain and a hosting service
If you do not how what domain and hosting are, do not worry, I did not either when I first started. (I am telling you now, I am the most non-technical person you will ever meet! ) The way I see it is to think of the domain as a house you rent, the domain name is your house number to tell people which one is yours, then hosting service is the housing agency you pay rent to. For example, my domain name is dailysurprises.co.uk and my host is SiteGround.
If you are a newbie like me, do not worry. Just head to SiteGround, on the top there is an option to use live chat. Use live chat to tell the operator that you need a website, someone will get back to you in less than 5 mins and walk you through step by step how to set up a website. SiteGround hands down has the best service in all the hosting companies I have tried so far. They also give you a free domain for life, which lots of hosting companies charge for $15! That is another $15 you can spend at Starbucks to blog!
Just one thing before you head there, think about what do you want to blog about. I blog about food, my husband blog about passive income. Everyone blog about different things because everyone has different topics that they are passionate about. What you want to blog about will help you decide your domain name. For example, allrecipes.co.uk is a food recipe website.
Step 2 Install WordPress
Most personal blogs these days are built on WordPress. What is WordPress? You might ask. Continue on my house example, I would say WordPress is your personal 24/7 builder. You tell your builder what you want your house to look like, they will go figure out the dimensions, building materials etc. You do not need an architecture degree to have a pretty house, just like you do not need coding experience or computer science degree to build a beautiful website. WordPress will take care of the coding, its interface is user-friendly and easy to use. If you can figure out how to use an android or apple phone without the user manual, you will surely master WordPress quickly.
How to install WordPress? Do not worry, if you set up your website through SiteGround, it is just one click to install WordPress. Or you can just use the web chat function on SiteGround page and get one of the operator to do it for you. Now you get why I love SiteGround so much right? It is like having a free website designer/consultant for free!
Step 3 Get a theme
After installing WordPress, the next important thing is to get a good theme. What is a theme? To explain it through my understanding, the theme is like the floor plan of your house. Do you want kitchen and living room to be together? Do you want to divide the house into 3 single bedrooms or 2 double bedrooms? Wordpress theme is there to take care of this.
Here is something I wish someone would tell me sooner. Just like floor plan, once it is set, you can change it but you would not change it normally. Just because you already bought furniture according to the dimension of each room. The theme is the same. I can change it if I want to, but at this point, I would not because I have adjusted all the pictures according to the theme requirement. If I use a new theme, most likely there is a different layout and different picture size requirement, it would be too much work.
If I could start over, I would buy a theme instead of using a free theme. Do not get me wrong, I do love the theme I am currently using. But because it is free, the theme itself is not very flexible. I would need to learn CSS and another coding language to tweak the theme to how I want it.
The one I am using is from Colorlib. If you have coding experience and just wanted a free theme, I would definitely recommend them. They have a great selection of free themes. If you do not have coding experience and cannot be bothered to learn, I would recommend buying a good theme like Divi theme from Elegant themes. As a matter of fact, that is the theme I bought and used to build the Ultimate Bloggers Resource Library on my subdomain. You will realize the resource library is password protected. That is because it is insider only content, you can get the password if you sign up here. Once you have access to the resource library, you will get stock images that are currently sold at $11 dollars at my shop for free. You will also be able to see the latest blogging deals and strategies, plus the exactly tools, plugins and software that I used to build my blog. It is all free, get your free pass to the resource library now through here. Plus once you get in, you will be able to see Divi theme in action. Divi theme by far has been the best theme I have come across. You do not need coding experience or knowledge, you can design a whole website by drag and drop!
Step 4 Start blogging
Once you get all the previous steps done, you can start blogging. Find the topic you have the passion for and write about it. Treat your website like your home, you would want to fill your home with nice and useful things right? It is the same with blogging. Put some effort into your articles! Show your passion to the world while providing values to your readers.
Maybe you are creative in cooking like me, why not share your recipes with your readers? Maybe you are the expert in growing vegetables in your backyard, why not share that knowledge?! Maybe you are a new mommy, why not share your mommy journey with other new moms? Fill your blog with your passion!
Step 5 Install Plugins
If you do not know what plugins are, do not worry, it is easy to understand. Using the same house example, if you have completed step 1 to step 4, you should have a house that has the layout you want and has things you like inside the house. Let’s say now you want your house to be more than just the basics, you want to have pretty pictures on the wall. If you do not want to spend the next few years study painting, you can just go to a market to buy some paintings. Plugins, in this case, are like paintings, they can make your website look a lot better without you to learn extra coding. For instance, instead of figuring out how to write html, css etc, I can just install the meta slider plugin to showcase my pictures in a slider.
Plugins that I cannot live without are shown in my Ultimate Bloggers Resource Library. It is password protected, but you can get the password here. All the information you need as a blogger is in that free resource library, plus extra freebies that you do not want to miss!
I hope the above information helps. If you still struggle with starting a blog, contact me here. I will try my best to help you.