Because you can’t fully brand your blog if they are free, as well, the templates are very limited with what you can do on a free blog.
Having said that, you can always try a free one first just to test it out and then transfer it to your own domain later. However, if you do that, you run the risk of not transferring properly and lose parts of your blog or your whole blog.
I have a solution to this about half way down this page. First, I’ll let you know how I’ve been building blogs, the do-it-yourself hard way, and then also offer you an easier solution that I’ve found recently. Click here if you want to jump down to the EASY WAY!
Let’s Build You A Blog
When I built blogs before, I had to research out each piece of the puzzle but lucky for you, you won’t have to spend hours doing the same thing! Here, I will show the all the pieces you’ll need to get your blog up and running.
What do you need?
- A domain name
- Web host
Take some time to research your niche and ways you can convey your niche in just a few words. I personally don’t like super long domain names, but if it gets to the point of your niche more, then go for it!
Once you have a domain name, then you have to get it registered at place like my favorite:
- GoDaddy – This is the service I’ve been using for years, they are not the cheapest but I like their service. Their .com’s start at $2.99 for the first year if you order two or more years, $14.99/year after first year.
What is a web host? It’s where your website resides on, in the simplest, non-technical terms, and it’s needed for every single website. It’s critical to find the right web host because you want to make sure it’s a reliable one with minimal down time so your website stays up and running 24/7.
I’ve tried a few different ones, read a bunch of reviews on this topic, and you know what? When I see the top bloggers using a particular web host, I think to myself, hmm that must be a great service!
The best one has to be hands down: HOSTGATOR! I am currently using their Baby Plan, under “Web Hosting“. They also have WordPress Hosting plans now too. Either way, you can still have WordPress installed on your website with either options.
Click on the HostGator image above and sign up now, they instantly offer 20% savings for new accounts! You will receive your login information for the admin cPanel section where you will install WordPress onto your site after you signup.
If you bought your domain from the services above, you will need to change your domain DNS (nameservers) to point to HostGator (see “Nameservers” image above) servers.
You can change this by going into your domain registration website, and find where you can manage your DNS settings. It can be easily done once you find it and you just update the nameservers to be exactly like the ones in the image above.
That’s fantastic! You’re almost there! Now the fun part, you will install WordPress (WP) onto your website! Wordpress is what makes your website a blog and what makes it function that way.
It’s one of the main and most popular ways to create your blog, as well as finding lots of support for it. First, you log into HostGator’s admin cPanel section, and find the section called “Software and Services”, which is near the bottom of your cPanel screen.
You will find the icon with a blue arrow around a stop watch named “QuickInstall“, click on that and it’ll bring you to a screen where you can search for WordPress.
Once you have searched it, just follow the easy steps to get your WordPress installed. After your installation, you’ll receive your login information for your WordPress site! Your login information to your WordPress site is usually something like: yourdomain.com/wp-admin and your user name & password should be emailed to you.
When you are logged into your WP site, you can do many things: start blogging by creating a “Post” or set up website information using “Pages”, and design the look of your site using the Appearance > Themes tool. Before you do all that, you should add some plugins which will be explained down below.
You will find plugins tool on the left menu of your WP admin screen, you should have the following ones installed and activated on your website as a start:
- All In One SEO
- Google Sitemap
- W3 Total Cache
- Show Top Commentators
These five plugins make your website search engine friendly which will help your blog rank higher in search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo.
Google Sitemap helps index your blog pages quicker so you can be found on Google in no time. You can make your blog load a lot more faster if you have W3 Total Cache and allow your site to handle more traffic.
Show Top Commentators gives props to readers who comment and encourages others to do the same. We all don’t like spam comments and Akismet help you keep those off your posts and pages.
Once you have all these installed and activated, you’re all set to start blogging!
NOW, THE EASY WAY
Is your head SPINNING yet? Do you want to pull all this information together by yourself or would you like help from a huge active community on a platform that can do all the above in ONE place and build your website in 30 seconds?
Yes, you heard that right! You won’t need to know any coding or know any of the jargon I spoke about up above. This one (magical) place is called WEALTHY AFFILIATE:
Are you kidding me? Why didn’t I find this years ago?!
This platform takes someone who is brand new to the internet marketing world and provide incredible, step-by-step, top notch training!
Wealthy Affiliate trains you how to make money online – from registering your first domain, picking your niche (it can be ANY niche), building your website with rich content, learn how to get traffic, monetizing your blog, and finally reaping your rewards from all your hard work!
Yes it does involve consistent work on your part because if you don’t take action, no one will do it for you; and this is NOT a scam, nor a get rich quick scheme. Therefore, if you follow their “Online Entrepreneur Certification” course, which are easy to follow with tasks to action on after each lesson, you will have online success!!
I have been a member since September, 2016, you can see my profile here, and this website of mine is totally the result of learning from the training at Wealthy Affiliate.
The Online Entrepreneur Certification course has 5 levels with 10 lessons in each level, even if you’re an expert in the field, you’ll be still learning tons.
You can also join their Affiliate Bootcamp course instead or as well if you want to go into the make money online niche.
Many experienced internet marketers join everyday, I’ve seen it myself! The wealth of information available to us at our finger tips is truly amazing!
There’s more… The owners of Wealthy Affiliate is Kyle and Carson, you have access to them everyday! Yes, they are personally available to help you.
Plus, you have the whole community of Wealthy Affiliate at your disposal if you ever need to ask a question or get stuck on a lesson/task.
I’ve never seen a more helpful community ever! My questions are always answered within the first 2 minutes! The support itself is unparalleled.
FREE TO START:
Okay, there’s even more… remember the first thing I said on this page was don’t get a free blog?
Well, the only free blog, or should I say blogs, you should get are the ones at Wealthy Affiliate because it’s soooo easy to transfer over to your own domain when you want to take that step and get serious with your online business as it’s all in ONE place!
You get TWO FREE BLOGS when you first sign up for the FREE Membership:
Free membership will allow you to check out Level 1 of the “Online Entrepreneur Certification” course, you’ll need the Premium membership if you want to continue on.
The Premium membership not only opens up all the lessons for you but you’ll be able to have live chat, weekly webinar training, extra training on various topics outside of the courses that are only available to premium members, direct messaging, and so much more.
As a Starter member, you get to test drive most of the Premium privileges for the first 7 days of signing up. If you don’t upgrade by the end of the 7 days, you can just continue as a free member as long as you want.
If you want to finally make money online, live that laptop lifestyle, and work from any location you want, then joining Wealthy Affiliate only makes sense.
I don’t know any other program that takes you step-by-step like they do and have the incredibly helpful community like they have. I fell in love with it the first day I was there! You will too.
Sign up by clicking the image above or if you want even MORE info, read my personal review:
Have you ever built a blog before? If so, how has it been and what worked best for you? Would love to hear your answers in the comments below.
Any questions you may have on this topic can be asked below or on my Wealthy Affiliate profile HERE!
Let’s make money online!