Best Guide on Blogging for Beginners

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I learned all the tips and tricks on creating a blog and website and i want to share them with you! Check out this great guide on blogging for beginners. I will show you how to set up your blog design and start blogging for money! I will provide blogging for beginner ideas and give you some great blogging tips to build a successful blog! Learn to pick blog design layouts or website design layout, blog post ideas, and blog topics! Check out these great blogger tips now!Here in this guide on blogging for beginners I will show you how you can build a successful blog step by step and I will give you some tips the pros use to build a successful blog!

Okay, but what if I just want a website for my business and not a blog?

No worries! The steps I will go over works for blogs and business websites.

Bluehost can handle your needs whether it is for a blog or business website.

I know.. I know.. You most likely have seen posts on every blog telling you how to start your own blog.

So… what is different about this one?

The difference is that I will tell you why you should start your own blog/website and exactly how you should do it and all the tips and tricks used to build a successful brand.

Now let’s start your blogging for beginners guide!

Should You Start a Blog Or Website?

Well… it depends.

Are you looking to create content or start a business?

If you answered yes to any one of these questions then…

Yes, you should absolutely start a website!

Why?

Well, there are multiple reasons, let’s break this down into 2 different types of people:

  1. The Business Owner

As a business owner, you are trying to sell some type of product or service to customers.

Now you can do this by opening a store somewhere and waiting for people to come in but as of writing this, it is 2018.

So…

You need to have an online presence!

You have to build your brand online, you need to market and sell your product or service to an online audience.

“Okay, but I can open an Amazon store, eBay store, sell on Facebook Marketplace or all three. So why do I need a website?”

One word control (I’ll dig deeper into this soon so stick with me).

  1. Content Creator

As a blogger you will need to have your own blog, right? Yes, but there are platforms like Facebook, which has Facebook notes where you can essentially blog on.

Or blogger by Google, which is seen as a good free blogging for beginners platform.

What about video creators or photographers? Why should they have their own website when there are platforms like YouTube, Instagram or Tumblr?

You guessed it, control (I’m getting there soon).

Now I bet you’re saying “I’m ready to do this thing!”.

Where Do I Start?

There are many platforms where you can start your website on, to make it simple check out this awesome Infographic here or click the image below.

Best platforms for your website or blog

Many content creators including myself agree that WordPress.org is the best place to start your website or blog.

This can be done very cheaply with my Bluehost link, which gets you your own website with full control for only $3.95 a month!

Skip one coffee a month and build your brand, it doesn’t get easier than that!

Remember that whole idea of control? Let’s dig into it.

Control

As I said, there are many ways to share your content online or to share your product online.

For product selling, there is:

Amazon
eBay
etc…

For content creation, there is:

YouTube
Facebook
Instagram
Etc…

But what do all these have in common? You do not have control!

Users are at the whim of these companies policies and procedures.

You don’t have control of any changes they make to their platform or if their platform dies out completely!

Now I know what you are thinking, “platforms like Amazon, Facebook and YouTube are too huge to die out, so I have nothing to worry about.”

But you have to consider the possibility that these companies will not be around or at least not have the traffic or power that they have now in the next 10, 25, or 50 years.

For example, take the YouTube stars Jenna Marbles and Dude Perfect.

They both amassed a huge following on many different social media platforms but Jenna Marbles has her own blog and Dude Perfect has their own website.

They are creating a brand that can last.

Even though they are based mostly off of YouTube, they have their own platform where they can shift the attention and content to if they need to.

Remember, you are trying to build success for the long-term not the short-term. Click To Tweet

And the way to do this is to simply have your own website.

Like I said before, WordPress is the best way to do this.

Let’s look into these simple steps in this beginners guide to blogging!

Getting Started

Bluehost price for your website or blog

First, you need to get a host for your website.

This just means that you pay a company to use their servers to keep your website on and Bluehost is my top choice for beginners.

I use them for this blog and haven’t had any issues.

For now, when you are just starting out stick with shared hosting and the basic plan, which is only $3.95 a month when you use my affiliate link!

Also, when your site gets more traffic, Bluehost will scale with you to keep your site performance running smoothly.

If Bluehost doesn’t work for you, other hosts I recommend are HostGator, Siteground and InMotion Hosting. All plans start at under $5.00 a month!

You can see the pros and cons of each host here or click the image below.

Best wordpress hosts for beginners to build their website or blog

Cool, now that you picked the plan, you need to choose a free domain name if you don’t have one already.

Pick a domain name for your website or blog

If you have a domain name already through GoDaddy then check out these steps on how to link it to your Bluehost site.

Tips on Picking a Domain Name

Now if you already have a business then use your business name as the domain name, simple.

Just make sure you try to get a .com domain which is the best known.

Other well-known ones are .org or .net

If you have no clue what your domain name should be then here are some tips:

  • Make it relevant to your business, for example, if you’re creating a website that sells pet toys you would try to get a domain like pettoys or toysforpets.
    (this helps search engines to better understand what your site is about and it also helps people to find your site).
  • Keep it short, no more than 10 characters.
  • Don’t put any numbers or special characters, it confuses visitors.
  • Make it easy to type and pronounce.
  • Research if anyone is using this name for anything else, such as social media accounts.
  • If you have a word you definitely want to include in your domain name, use domain name generators to find available domains with that word:

Lean Domain Search

BustAName

NameBoy

Nice! You got your domain name, now to complete this process.

Payment Screen

Bluehost Payment screen for your website or blog

You will now be at the dreaded payment screen but don’t worry it isn’t that much money if you think about it. The best option is to select the 36-month plan, more bang for your buck.

Uncheck the SiteLock and Codeguard option. There are free WordPress plugins that can give you these features.

But do keep the domain privacy protection. This is to keep your address from floating around the internet. $1 a month won’t hurt you.

Important to note that you will have to pay for the full 36 months at one time, so make sure it fits in your budget.

Now after you pay up, you will see a screen to create your Bluehost password. Make it really secure!

Then click login and we move on to getting WordPress set up.

Installing WordPress

You will have to pick a theme, at this point you can pick any theme and you will be able to change it later.

Pick your WordPress theme for your website or blog

After picking your theme you will be at this screen, just click start building and we’re onto WordPress!

Start building your website or blog on WordPress

Now for the part, you have been waiting for – WordPress setup

Now you will be logged into your WordPress admin site.

Bluehost will provide a walk-through guide to help you get started, go through these and choose the options to the best of your knowledge, don’t worry you can change all these later.

Bluehost setup guide for your website or blog on WordPress

After this setup, it will ask you to customize your site, but don’t do that just yet.

Leave WordPress open and open a new tab and go to Bluehost and log in if you have to.

When you are logged into Bluehost, go to My Sites and click on Manage Site.

Manage your website or blog on Bluehost

Then click on the security tab and you will see the Free SSL switch and it will be off, so you just have to switch this on.

Activate your free ssl for your website or blog on Bluehost

It will take about 30 minutes but it can take a few hours to activate. Anything longer than a day then you should contact Bluehost support for assistance.

You might get an email to confirm the SSL activation if so confirm and then your site will be secure and the Internet will thank you!

At this point, you can set up your email accounts by going to Email and then create your email accounts.

Setup your email accounts for your website or blog on Bluehost

Or, you can leave this for later. Remember with this plan you can only have 5 email accounts and each email account is limited to 100MB in mailbox space.

Moving on…

WordPress Customizing

Go back to your WordPress admin dashboard.

I know it looks crazy confusing but don’t worry I got you!

These are the first steps you want to do when in the WordPress dashboard:

  1. Setup your Link Structure (Permalinks)

Go to settings on your WordPress menu and select Permalinks. Click post name and hit save. (this makes your links easy to read and helps with SEO)

setup your permalinks for your WordPress website or blog

  1. Setup your User Account

I recommend adding a new user which will be your new admin account, fill out the info and then select show password and then set your password, set the user role as administrator and save.

setup your WordPress admin account for your website or blog

Then delete the default admin account so there is only one admin account, yours.

The admin login page for your WordPress site is *your website*/wp-admin.

  1. Set your Time Zone

Setup your timezone for your WordPress website or blog

Go to settings, then general and set the correct timezone.

  1. Set User Registration

Setup your user registration settings for your WordPress website or blog

I recommend disabling this for now until you need it.

  1. Connect Jetpack (if you haven’t done so already in the Bluehost setup)

Setup Jetpack on your WordPress website or blog

  1. Choose a Theme

Go to appearance then themes and click add new and then install your desired theme and activate it.

Activate your desired WordPress theme for your website or blog

I do recommend getting a premium theme from Studiopress with the Genesis framework.

StudioPress Theme of the Month

A premium theme with Genesis will run you about $140 but I feel it is totally worth it.

Premium themes on the Genesis framework are very secure, optimized for performance and are highly customizable.

I got the Mai Pro theme from Studiopress as soon as I started this WordPress blog and it has been working great for me and Studiopress gives you step-by-step guides on how to set up the theme.

Okay, maybe Studiopress may be a little pricey for you right now but you still want a fast and secure premium theme, then MyThemeShop is the place to go.

Currently, MyThemeShop has over 100 themes and all under $50! They also have some free themes that you may like!

You can start on a free theme and move to a premium theme later on but I decided to future proof my website and start out on a premium theme. It is totally up to you.

Great! Now you have the basics set up… I know this is getting long but definitely worth it so let’s keep on going.

Popular Plugins

These are some of the most recommended WordPress plugins to use so you can maintain and optimize your website like the pros.

Let’s get started:

  1. UpdraftPlus

updraft plus plugin to backup your WordPress website or blog

The first plugin I recommend before getting anything else is a backup plugin.

I use UpdraftPlus and it has been working beautifully, also it is 100% free.

It allows you to back up your site to cloud platforms such as Dropbox, Google Drive etc… set on a schedule or run manually.

You can restore from backup with the click of a button.

I recommend running backups at least once a week and after any major change to your site.

Also, I recommend running a manual backup before updating WordPress, theme or any plugins.

UpdraftPlus has a premium version with more features if you need them for the future.

If UpdraftPlus isn’t for you, some free alternatives are BackWPup and BackUpWordpress.

  1. Easy Google Fonts

Easy Google Fonts plugin for wordpress to customize your website or blog fonts

Install the Easy Google Fonts plugin to change the font styles on the different headings and paragraph style.

Best of yet… it is completely free.

  1. WPForms Lite

wpforms lite plugin for wordpress to create simple forms for your website or blog

WPForms is used to create a contact form for the contact page on your website.

You can also create subscription forms and payment forms.

It is free and very simple to use.

Free Alternatives are Ninja forms and Form Maker.

  1. Wordfence Security

Wordfence security plugin for wordpress to keep your website or blog secure

Wordfence is a free security plugin for your WordPress site to protect against malicious attacks.

Free alternatives are iThemes security and Bulletproof security.

  1. WP Fastest Cache

WP fastest cache wordpress plugin to make your website or blog perform faster

WP Fastest Cache is a free plugin that optimizes your website so it can perform faster.

It is completely free and does all the work for you!

Free alternatives are W3 total cache and WP Super Cache.

  1. WP-Optimize

WP Optimize wordpress plugin to clean up old files on your wordpress website or blog

WP-Optimize is a free database cleanup tool, which cleans up old unused files to increase your website’s performance.

Free alternatives are Advanced Database Cleaner and WP-DBmanager.

Be very careful with database tools, they can break your site so please run a backup of your site before installing database plugins and keep the defaults unless you know what you are doing.

  1. Coming Soon Plugin

Coming soon wordpress plugin to create custom coming soon or maintenance pages for your website or blog

You just created your site and you have a lot of work to do before it is open to the public.

So you might want a coming soon page and using this Coming Soon plugin is the best way to do so.

If you use Bluehost, you will have the option to use the Bluehost coming soon page in Settings, under general and you scroll all the way to the bottom you will see it.

When enabled, visitors will see this screen when they visit your site:

Bluehost coming soon page for your wordpress website or blog

Now, this isn’t an appealing coming soon page and it isn’t even customizable.

Luckily there is the Coming Soon plugin which gives you full control to design the coming soon page or maintenance page if you need to update your site.

  1. WP Smush

wp smush wordpress plugin to optimize images on your website or blog

WP Smush is a plugin that compresses your images to a smaller size without losing quality.

This makes your site load faster thus increasing performance for free!

Free alternatives are EWWW Image Optimizer and ShortPixel.

Bonus: I advise to compress images with a site like TinyJPG first then upload the image to WordPress to be compressed by one of these image compression plugins so your image can be smaller without quality loss which further increases performance!

  1. Yoast SEO

yoast seo wordpress plugin to optimize your website or blog for search engines

Yoast SEO is a free advanced plugin used for SEO techniques so your blog posts can rank higher on search engines such as Google.

This plugin allows you to set keywords for your website and tells you when something needs to be corrected so your website can rank higher on search engines.

Another popular free alternative is All In One SEO.

SEO plugins do have some advanced features so please do your research on SEO tactics. Luckily I have some tips for you below so stick with me.

There you go! Some of the top plugins to use for your site to get it optimized and ready to take on the world.

Theme Customizing

Now for theme customization, go to appearance and choose customize then you will see your theme and the menus to customize.

customize your website or blog on wordpress

Play around and change things to your liking, if you are confused, do your research. Learn and create and you will be great.

Themes do have limitations on what you can customize, that’s why you should learn a bit of CSS code and no you don’t have to be an expert coder, just some simple code.

This can be found under appearance then customization and when you scroll all the way down you will see the option for Additional CSS.

Add additional CSS code to your website or blog

Mail Subscription

MailerLite Email Marketing for Small Business

Now that you have your website or blog all set up you need to start getting some traffic, and email is still one of the best ways to do so.

If you are setting up a blog you will be able to notify your readers when you release new blog posts, market your courses if you have any or any products you release.

As a business, an email list will give you the power to market products or services, promotions and stay in touch with your customers.

So where do you start?

There are many email subscription companies such as MailChimp and ConvertKit but they can get pretty expensive really fast.

For example, ConvertKit starts at $29 a month. Which may be too expensive when you are just starting out, it definitely was for me!

ConvertKit is a very powerful platform though and works great for email subscriptions so if you can afford it then they might be the option for you.

MailChimp has a free plan which gives you up to 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails a month but they have a strict policy on affiliate links that may get you banned and you only get 30 days of support.

So, I steered away from that and I went with MailerLite.

They are kind of the new kids on the block but they offer a free plan that gives you up to 1,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails a month!

Also, MailerLite gives you most of their features in the free plan.

Sign up for MailerLite’s free plan here.

Awesome Features

MailerLite has some awesome features and here are some:

  • Very simple and easy to use editor for customizable forms.

easy to design forms on MailerLite for your wordpress website or blog

  • Highly customizable email campaigns with drag and drop editor.

easy to customize email campaigns with MailerLite for your wordpress website or blog

  • Pop-up forms, embedded forms, and landing pages all included.

different MailerLite form options for your website or blog

  • Auto emails options.

setup automatic emails on Mailerlite for your website or blog

MailerLite has all the features you need when just starting out and remember its absolutely free up to 1,000 subscribers.

Get started with MailerLite to grow your email list and grow your audience!

Bonus Tips

Great! everything is set up and you are ready to work on your site to show it to the world.

Here are some tips to build your site like a pro, please do your research on each topic.

  • Choosing the Focus keyword for your post or page (make sure it is not a highly competitive keyword, use Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest to research keywords and find the right ones to use).

user ubersuggest to find keywords for your pages or posts

  • Place LSI keywords in your blog post (words that relate to your keyword).
  • Use easy to read fonts, especially for your paragraph font (I use Roboto).
  • Use spacing in your blog posts to break up the text so it is easier to read.
  • Also, place images and videos in your blog post to capture and keep the reader’s attention.
  • Use Canva to build infographics and custom pictures for your website.
  • Develop a social following on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc…
  • Use Pingdom and GTmetrix to test your website speed, they also provide fixes to make your site perform better. Please do your research before implementing any of these fixes!
  • You can use a blog topic generator for ideas if you ever get those “I don’t know what to write about” moments.
  • Take time to learn how to write catchy headlines for your post or article.

As said before please do your research on each of these topics, some of these can get really in depth but they will make your website or blog truly awesome!

And…

Most importantly if you are building a blog then write amazing content! You need to provide unique, helpful and engaging content to your readers.

Write thorough posts that will leave your readers satisfied and then they will want to come back! Click To Tweet

If you are building a website then make it user-friendly. Make it so customers will have a good experience using your website to shop for products or services.

Use these tips in this post to make your website rank in Google so your business will gain customers from an online audience!

Conclusion

That’s all for this In-Depth blogging for beginners guide!

Also with some of the top tips and tricks used so you can build your website and make it effective and efficient.

Remember to use my Bluehost link to get your website with a free domain name for just $3.95 a month!

Also, sign up for your free MailerLite plan here.

Starting a website is pretty easy but making it brand that people want to follow and pay attention to requires a lot of hard work. Click To Tweet

It may take a year or two before you see high traffic and engagement on your website and social media platforms but don’t give up.

Use these tips in this post to show your website to the world and amass a large following.

I know this was a massive post so if you weren’t able to get through all of it in one sitting I definitely understand.

But…

I promise you that these tips will help you greatly so bookmark this page and come back to it later. You can also contact me with any questions you may have.

Stay persistent, keep producing amazing content and the audience will come.

Take action now because you will miss the shots you don't take

Most importantly, Take action now!

Are you ready to take control of your money? Check out these awesome money resources which will help you to make and save $1,000’s!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which means I will earn a commission if you choose to click and make a purchase. While there is no additional cost to you, it will give us a pretty penny. Thanks For Your Support!

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