How to Start a Blog and Make Money for Free with Bluehost
How to Start a Blog with Bluehost
- Pick a blog name
- Get your blog online
- Customize your blog
- Write & publish your first post!
- Promote your blog
- Make money blogging
Let’s start your blog!
Step 1: Pick a blog name
The first step to finding a good blog name is choosing your topic.
If you’re not sure what to blog about, there are a few ways to find a good blog topic:
- Hobbies & Passions. Hobbies or other interests you are passionate about are a great place to start. Cooking, travel, fashion, sports, and cars are all classic examples. But even blogs about more obscure hobbies can be successful since your audience is literally anyone in the world with the internet.
- Life experiences. Everyone has lessons they have learned through life experience. Sharing this knowledge can be incredibly helpful to others in similar situations. For example, I recently helped a woman start her blog about being a fireman’s wife. She has a lot of experience and knowledge to share with others about this topic, and it has helped her connect to with others in similar situations.Think about the things you have experienced in life. This could be related to your family (example: a blog about being a stay at home mom’s cooking or mom fashions & etc.), work (a blog about experiences dealing with clients), or other life experiences (a blog about dealing with a troubling time such as a disease or divorce, or about a happy time such as preparing for a wedding Plans or a birth of a child or starting a New Company starts up).
- A personal blog. A personal blog is a blog all about you. This will include a variety of topics, from things you do on a daily basis, to random thoughts and musings. This is a great way to share your thoughts with the world without having to stick to just one topic.
Once you have a topic it’s time to choose your blog name.
A good blog name should be descriptive so that potential readers can instantly tell what your blog is about just from the name.
If you are blogging about one specific topic then you will definitely want to include that in some way in your blog name. Try not to get hung-up on just one word though. For example, a cooking blog doesn’t necessarily have to have the word “cooking” in it. The words “food”, “recipes”, and “meals” would also let people know that your blog is about cooking.
If you are planning to create a personal blog where you discuss a variety of topics then I recommend using your name, or some variation of it, since your blog is all about you. For example, I own the Kitekgroup.com. You can also add your middle name or middle initial if you find your name is already taken. Or you could use a variation like “KitekGroup Blog” or “KiTek Group”.
Once you have some blog name ideas you will need to choose a domain extension.
A .com domain extension is the most preferred, but .net or .org work as well. It is also important to note that for the purposes of a blog domain you cannot have any spaces between words. So “kitekGroup” becomes https://Kitekgroup.com
Now that you’ve got your name and have picked an extension it’s time to make sure that no one else has already registered the same name:
If you find that the name you wanted is already taken there are a few things you can do:
- Try a different domain extension. If the .com version is already registered you may still be able to get the .net or .org version of your blog name.
- Add small words. Words like “a”, “my”, or “the”. For example, this site is called KiTekGroup.com.
- Add dashes between words. For example, Kitek-Group.com
Step 2: Get your blog online
Now that you’ve got a name picked out it’s time to get your blog online. This might sound hard or technical, but the steps below will walk you right through and make the process easy.
To get your blog up and running you need two things: blog hosting and blogging software. The good news is that these typically come packaged together.
A blog host is a company that stores all of the files for your blog and delivers them to the user when they type in your blog name. You must have a blog host in order to have a blog.
You also need to have the software to build your blog. In this guide, I will be showing you how to build a blog using the WordPress blogging software because it is the most popular, customizable, and easiest to use.
The blog host I recommend, and the one I show you how to use in this guide, is BlueHost. I personally use BlueHost and I recommend them for all new bloggers because:
- They will register your blog name for you for free, making sure no one else can take it.
- They offer a free, simple installation of the WordPress blogging software (which I show you how to use in this guide).
- They have been recommended by WordPress since 2005 and currently host over 2 million blogs and websites.
- They have helpful 24/7 customer service via phone or web chat.
- They have a money-back guarantee if you are unsatisfied for any reason.
Use any BlueHost link on this site to make sure you get the special discount price of $2.95 per month. BlueHost compensates me when you purchase through my link, so my services are free of charge to you! In fact, if you have any trouble at all setting-up your blog with this tutorial, just contact me and I will do it for you.
1. Click here for the special $2.95 per month rate on BlueHost and then click “get started now”.
2. Select your plan:
I recommend that new bloggers get the Plus plan since it has the unlimited features you will want as a blogger. But if cash is tight you can start with the Basic plan and then upgrade in the future. Click “Select” to choose your plan.
3. Type in your domain name in the left box and then click “next” to start the registration process.
- If you already own a domain name and want to use it for your blog, type your existing domain in the right box and then click “next”. Only use the right box if you have previously paid to register a domain!
4. Fill out your billing details on the registration page.
5. You will also need to choose your hosting package and options.
- I like the 36-month option since it gives you the cheapest monthly rate, but the 12-month package has a lower up-front cost. Either is a good choice.
- I uncheck the boxes next to the other products when I sign-up. You can always get these products later if you decide you need them.
6. You will then need to create a password for your account. Once you do that your blog software will be automatically installed. Click “Log Into WordPress” to be taken to your blog.
You should also receive an email with your blog log-in details. (NOTE: The login details for your blog will be different than for your BlueHost account.)
Having trouble installing your blog? Get help here.
Step 3: Customize your blog
To start with, you will need to login to your blog. Go to http://www.yourwebsitename.com/wp-admin to bring up the login screen (replace “yourwebsitename.com” with your domain name). If you are unsure of your login name or password, check the email that was sent to you from BlueHost that has this information.
Changing your blog design
Once you login you will be in the WordPress administrator area. This is where you can make any changes you want to your blog.
Everyone has a different idea of how they want their blog to look. One of the great things about a WordPress blog is that you can change your entire layout and design with just a few clicks.
In WordPress, blog layouts are known as “Themes”. What is a blog theme? Themes control the entire design of your blog. To change your theme you are going to click on the “Appearance” tab on the left menu.
You will see several themes are already installed on your blog: Twenty Seventeen, Twenty Sixteen, etc. These are well-designed, clean-looking themes that can work for just about any type of blog. In fact, many of the world’s top bloggers use one of these themes.
Unless you have a very specific design in mind for your blog, I suggest you use one of these themes to start with. For our example, let’s use the “Twenty Twelve” theme. In order to activate the theme on your blog, hover over the theme and click the “Activate” button. That’s it! You have changed the entire design of your blog with just one click!
If you don’t like any of the themes that are already installed you can easily choose from thousands of other free themes. To install a new theme, click on the “Appearance” tab on the left menu and then click “Add New”.
This is the theme search screen. By clicking the “Feature Filter” you can search by color, layout, and more. Check the boxes that you want and then click “Apply Filters”.
Now you can browse the themes that have the characteristics that you want. When you find one that you like click the blue “Install” button.
Once the theme is installed click “Activate” to activate the theme on your blog. To see your new theme in action, go to your blog and take a look!
Changing your theme is the simplest way to customize your blog, but there are lots of other customizations you can do.
Step 4: Write & publish your first post!
Now that your blog is up and running it’s time to actually do some blogging!
Go to the left menu and click on “Posts”.
You will see there is already a post there. This is a default post on every new WordPress blog, and we don’t need it. To delete it click “Trash” just under the post.
To begin writing a new post, click the “Add New” link.
You are now on the post editor screen. Enter the title of your post in the top box and then begin writing your post in the lower box.
If you would like to add a picture to your post, click on the “Add Media” button and click “Select Files” to upload a picture from your computer. You can make adjustments to the picture size on the next screen. When you are ready click “Insert into post” to add the picture.
Once you have finished your post just click the “Publish” button on the right side of the screen to publish it.
Publishing Your Blog
Even after you have written a post your blog may still be showing a “Coming Soon” page.
When you are ready to make your blog public just click the link near the top to remove the “Coming Soon” page.
Congratulations! You now know how to publish content on your blog!
Step 5: Promote your blog
Creating a well-designed blog and writing great content is just the start. In order to get readers for your blog, you will need spend some time promoting it, especially when you first start.
One of my favorite ways to get readers to my blog is to post links on my social media accounts like Facebook and Twitter. This is great, because not only do your friends see the link, but if your friends share the link with their friends it automatically multiplies your readers. If you have created high-quality content on your blog then social media is a great way for your blog to go viral.
In addition to getting new readers to your blog, you will also want to make sure your current readers are coming back. This is where email marketing plays a big role. By collecting the email addresses of your visitors (with their permission of course), you can then notify them when you post something new on your blog. This keeps people coming back to your blog, which not only gives you more readers over time, it also allows you to build a closer relationship with your readers.
Email marketing is too big a topic to cover well here, so I created a separate guide to email marketing for those who are interested (hint: every blogger who wants more readers needs to read this guide).
For more tips on promoting your blog make sure to check out my in-depth guide to blog promotion.
Step 6: Make money blogging
Once you have put in the effort of creating great blog content and promoting your blog, making money from your blog is actually the easy part.
There are several ways you can make money blogging, from selling your own products or services, to getting paid to write reviews of products on your blog. But the easiest way to make money from your blog is to sell advertising space.
Once you have a popular blog, advertisers will be hounding you for the opportunity to advertise. The best way to take advantage of this situation is to use Google Adsense. They find the advertisers for you and all you have to do is place the Google Adsense code on your blog to start running ads. Google Adsense takes all of the hard work out of the process and just cuts you a check.
Still, if you have any questions. Please feel free and email us:
>>> KiTekgroup@gmail.com <<<
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