A blog is a place to share ideas or to encourage a community. It can be a means of earning a bit of cash as an affiliate marketer or a real living.
In order to achieve your goals, you should understand the differences between free and hosted sites and learn how to build a blog page effectively.
But first, determine why you are writing a blog. Some people just want a soapbox from which to talk about issues of personal importance. Only readers concerned about those issues will find these sites and stick around to read them.
If articles are well written, well researched, but also approachable and they appeal to a large audience, readership can be in the hundreds or thousands.
If this is a place to make money, your platform must support your strategy, enabling you to post advertisements for other companies, upload affiliate banners and links, or install backlinks as per paid arrangements with other internet users.
Choose a Platform
Now you must decide if your blog should be created on WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc.
The most popular and easiest site to use is WordPress, but browse other sites. We used WordPress for our site and this image is inside the dashboard, how this post looks before it is published.
Starting a blog or website on WordPress is free, but you will need to arrange hosting with a web service provider. These service providers sometimes claim to offer free WordPress website building, but this service is always free of charge.
Templates enable anyone, even computer noobs, to make a start on their first website in no time. WordPress is even a secure platform, protecting your identity and that of users. Large corporations and universities trust WordPress.
Select a Name
When people talk about your Domain Name, they mean the title you select followed by dot-com, dot-net, dot-org, etc. You can select something people will remember and have full control over content.
The only reason to choose totally free hosting that comes with an awkward domain name is if your main goal is to share with a select group of people or to write stuff down in a disciplined sort of way. You went to all the trouble of starting this thing; now you should write a bit of your novel/recipe book/memoir every day — that sort of thing.
The extension you select is your suffix. Be careful to pick something people will trust. Dot-edu isn’t possible because you’re not a university, but dot-club doesn’t sound as good as dot-net.
Create your name and look it up on a domain search offered by one of the many big web hosting companies out there to make sure no one else has that name already. Select something snappy and pay just a few dollars monthly.
You’ll be registering for shared server space which limits your storage and bandwidth, number of domain names and email accounts, but this is just a blog. What you get is all you need and the price is right.
For that cost, consumers also receive support 24/7 from the host service provider. Just be sure the provider’s load speed is great (A2 has one of the fastest) and that uptime is the highest you can find. There are some which guarantee no downtime (that is, no “website down for maintenance” bulletins when readers try to see what you’ve written lately).
These firms can do this by providing multiple servers, including redundant (backup) servers. Start your WordPress page as part of the sign up process and go from there rather than heading to WordPress first. You’ll still have access to all WordPress services.
We have some more information about hosting here on our main page to help you choose the right plan and provider.
Build Your Blog Page
Here is where the fun really begins. You get to design your own page. It won’t be a custom site; not completely original.
Instead, select from assorted WordPress themes and structural options which suit your topic. Format your blog in a way which is similar to other blogs; in fact, WordPress can help you select blog-friendly formats.
Organizational considerations to keep in mind include how many columns and side bars to have, where to place them, where pictures will go, and how much room you want for images. Decide if there will likely be a video component at some point or just static pictures.
Would you like something stripped down or busy and energetic? There are some colored accents, borders, font options, and more.
You could be done in half an hour because it’s that simple, but browsing and choosing is likely to take much longer because there are so many options and this is such an interesting process.
Bloggers might even fret about getting it just right which draws out the process, but not because there is anything difficult about it.
There are functions on WordPress which allow you to add photos, comment boxes, sign-up sheets for newsletters, and other plug-ins. Plug-ins take a simple software program and enable consumers to expand and customize it.
Follow instructions to protect your setup and follow some simple instructions about how to ready your blog for SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
SEO is simply strategy for guiding browsers to your page before other pages boasting similar topics and themes. Why does this matter to you?
If your blog is also your living, then it matters a lot. Even people who simply want to share information would rather go to the effort in the hope of attracting a big audience than seeing their site sit idle and unread.
SEO tactics take several things into account, one being download speed which is why this is one important aspect of choosing a web host. Another is keyword density.
Keywords are the terms and phrases most commonly used to search for something on browser such as Google. Too many keywords in your content make Google suspicious of your site’s legitimacy but not enough causes Google to overlook your page.
You have to write sensibly and naturally, but use analytics to find out how consumers search for your topic online. Write regular content. Irregular posts aren’t popular with people or browsers, especially lengthy gaps of several months between posts. Caption everything with keywords and always write original copy.