Lifestyle

How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide

The WordPress Version
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So you are probably here because you are interested in starting a Blog right? That is a great idea and congrats to taking the first step in the direction of your dream. It has been said so many times that the first step is to start but how do you do that with so much info on the web about this same topic? Don’t worry! I’ve got you! I will give you the easy to follow step by step guide to starting a blog in 2020. If you are interested in learning and growing, keep reading. 

Why you should create a blog 

Before I dive into the good stuff and getting into the deets, I would like to share why you should start a blog and if it’s even right for you.

Important: If you already know why you want to start a blog, skip this step and go right ahead to the guide!

  1. Blogging is a great way to build credibility online. If you are passionate about a topic and have enough information, people will see you as the “go-to person”
  2. It is a great way to meet new people. Cliche I know, but I’ve met some of the most interesting people through blogging that I would not have met in my “regular life”.
  3. You get to challenge yourself daily and improve your writing.
  4. It can be used as your resume to show your abilities based on the Industry you are in. I’ve personally received writing jobs for a Magazine and Newspaper because they saw my Blog online and knew I would be a great fit.
  5. You can make money doing it and if done correctly, you can make a lot of money
  6. It’s a great alternative to a 9-5 and has the potential to be scaled to a lucrative Business
  7. It’s fun!

How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide

Step 1 – Choose your preferred blogging platform

Blogging platforms are plentiful and choosing the right one depends on what you want and of course your level of “Tech Savvy-ness”. Just to name a few, there is Blogger, Drupal, Joomla,  Pyro, Squarespace, WordPress and so much more!  I like to tell people to do a Google Search and see which works best for you vs using the one that somebody else uses as it might not be the same for you.

When I started Blogging I used Blogger because it was easy to set up and use, but as I became more serious I realized there were no plug-ins or new features with Blogger and I switched to WordPress.

WordPress is one of the largest blogging platforms in the world that offers many plug-ins, add-ons and so many design options that you can literally change the way your Blog looks several times throughout the year!

There are more than 82 million active users of WordPress. If you don’t believe me, check the stats below!

Blogging Platform CMS

Just in case you are still not 100% sure about WordPress, here are a few more benefits of using WordPress.

  • Ease of Use
  • Manage Your Website from Any Computer
  • No HTML Editing or FTP Software Required
  • Search Engines Love WordPress Sites
  • The Design of Your Website is 100% Customizable
  • A Blog is Built-in and Ready to Go.

 

Step 2 – Choosing a Web Host for your Blog (self -hosted or free alternative)

This is a pretty big decision so I will try my best to finesse the situation (in the best way possible) to help you decide.  First of all, this depends on whether you are a Hobby Blogger or a Professional Blogger.  Let’s define these terms before you really dive in!

In short, hobby bloggers only focus on the blog itself which they do just for fun with no real goals. Professional bloggers take their blog for what it is — a lead generation tool — and focus on building a business system around the blog.

So you now have two (2) options: Self-hosted or Free Alternative!

WordPress and Blogger offer free blogs for anyone. It’s perfect for people who aren’t serious about blogging. But there are downsides:

1) You won’t be able to get your OWN domain name

On a free blog, your blog’s web address (your URL) will include the name of the Blog Platform at the end.  It will look something like this:

  • https://www.hautepeople.wordpress.com
  • https://www.hautepeople.blogspot.com
  • https://www.hautepeople.tumblr.com

Not only does it look weird but it’s long and hard to remember! Can you imagine directing people to a site with any of the names above? That’s what I did when I just started until I leveled up and opted for self-hosting.

2) Too many limits 

Free Blogs have a lot of limits! You can’t fully monetize it, and you can’t upload all those videos and images you want to really “sell your story“.  So many limits, it’s so annoying!

3) You DON’T OWN your blog

Yup! you heard that correctly! You don’t actually own the Blog once you use the free option. It’s like paying rent, It’s hosted on someone else’s web property and they can delete it if they want to. This has been done in the past and will probably continue. All your hard work on your blog, have the possibility of being vanished within seconds. 

However,  with a self-hosted blog on your own domain name – you are the REAL owner of your blog. Will the real owner of this Blog stand up? That’s you!

You can name the blog whatever you like and can end it with web suffixes like .com, co.uk, .net, .org,  You also now have access to unlimited bandwidth for videos, images, and content plus the free themes. 

Your next question is probably about price and it’s not as much as you might think.  It is usually as low as $5 to $10 per month, depending on your hosting provider and the package you choose. You can opt for monthly or yearly packages and again it’s based on what you want! I choose a yearly package that can take up to 200,000-page views per month an SSL security and other cool offerings.

 

Step 3 – The Domain + How to Set up a Blog on your own domain

WordPress Logo

If you still have no idea what a domain is,  that’s ok, it took me a while to get all the terms initially but I will still explain because I want you to get it.  

You will need to come up with a domain name you like and also choose a hosting company that can host your blog. Think about this as purchasing a home (domain)  then deciding where you will be living (hosting).

  • Domain: The domain is the URL of your website. Examples: google.com (Google.com is the domain), Facebook.com (Facebook.com is the domain).
  • Hosting: Hosting is the company that puts your website up on the internet so everyone else can see it. Everything will be saved there. Examples: BlueHost, GoDaddy, HostGator and so on!

I personally use DreamHost because it suits my budget and had everything I was looking for. Since I started this blog in March of 2020, things have been good so far.

I currently pay usd$74 for the year and my next payment will be due in March 2021.  If you click HERE, you will get a discount when you sign up for DreamHost through my link.  Please be on the lookout for discounts on sites like Rakuten, Retailmenot and Honey

 If you are not Tech Savvy (like myself)  You will be happy to know that most hosting sites will have a “one-click” WordPress install on their admin panel. All you have to do is click and just like that it’s all set up and ready to go. If you are already a Blogger and looking to carry over content from your old blog, there is a migration option as well (for an additional cost) or included in the package you choose. 

Here is a link to a video to help with this part if you are having issues.  

Once WordPress is installed on your website, all you have to do to start blogging is go to your WP-Admin page usually www.yourblognamehere.com/wp-admin, and start writing by adding a new post.

At the start, the layout looks confusing, but it gets very understandable quickly.  Don’t be afraid to go to YouTube for help if it becomes overwhelming.

Step 4 – Designing your WordPress blog

This is where you get to decide how you want the Blog to look. This can be done in two (2) ways:  Once logged in go to  Appearance > Themes and install a FREE WordPress theme or you can purchase one from sites like Pipdig, Fiverr, Etsy or any site that sells Blog Templates.  Note: Templates differ by Blog Platforms so If you are on WordPress, choose a WordPress Template and so on as another one will not work.

Since I have a Lifestyle Blog, I chose a Magazine Template that has a clean and modern look! I would recommend choosing a template that is in line with the category of your Blog.

Pipdig

How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide

Another important factor in the design of your Blog is that is should not only look appealing but be easy to navigate! There is no need to create a site that has all the bells and whistles and people don’t know how to use it. Use this simple rule to guide you “less is more” and don’t be afraid to research other Blogs in your niche to see how they look and do something similar but with your personal touch.

Step 5 – Useful Resources For Beginner Bloggers

When I just started Blogging a few years ago, the resources on Blogging were limited! The best thing I found was a book by a successful Blogger who lived in London. While I was able to get an insight on what it was to be a Blogger, the info did not apply to me as I live in Jamaica! Today however, there are so many resources and I would like to share a few. These will include articles, books and courses:

I hope that you found this guide helpful and it will help to put you on the right path to starting your Blog or improving on what you already have.

If you have any questions or would like further information, please email me at hautepeople@yahoo.com with the subject “Blogging Query”.

 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

#How to start a Blog in 2020: The easy to follow Guide 

Haute People was launched in September 2011 as a Fashion Blog and has grown into a Lifestyle Blog. The Term “Haute” can be defined as “Fashionably Elegant” or of High Quality. This blog looks at topics from Beauty, Fashion, Entertainment, Hair Trends, Pop Culture as well as exciting new features every month. A favorite among our readers is “Behind The Seams” where influential people from the Creative Industries are featured. . Haute People are Smart, Bold, Creative and Individualistic. If you have an innate passion for Lifestyle, Fashion and all things current, you are HAUTE.

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