Free Step by Step Guide to Starting a Blog! I made this free blogging tutorial today while I started my second blog – 101partyideas.com. Why today? Because everything is on SALE today (Black Friday), including blog hosting which is discounted by 70% (the discount will extend this whole weekend) so I took advantage of the deal and rush to put this tutorial to help anyone who wants to starts a blog this weekend. I print-screened every step I took so hope you will find this tutorial helpful. I print-screened every page for you guys, even my daughter may be able to start a blog with this guide.
Blogging is very rewarding! I have been blogging since 2012 and I cannot imagine myself doing anything else in the future. I get to be my own boss and work around my kids’ schedule. Not only do I get to write about what I’m passionate about, but my family gets to experience so many things that we wouldn’t even get to do if we don’t have this blog and the best part, it makes money even when I’m asleep!
I’ve been blogging for the past 5 years on top of being a stay at home mom. As a family, we’ve been invited to family fun events, theme parks, and restaurants. We’ve tested many family-friendly products and even traveled for free multiple times. I’ve also been able to collaborate with brands that I love and so much more. The list of blogging perks goes on. But whether you want to start a blog to make money or just as a hobby or both, this Free Step by Step Guide to Starting a Blog Tutorial is for you.
FREE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO STARTING A BLOG: SHOULD I START A BLOG?
If you have an idea, a topic, a passion, a hobby, an experience, or a project you wish to share. Put it all on a blog! You will not only be able to help other people with what you know, you will learn more as you explore your passion and you can earn an income while doing it.
disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links.
Ready to turn your hobby into a career? Follow these Free Step by Step Guide to Starting a Blog:
FREE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO STARTING A BLOG: WHAT YOU NEED TO START A BLOG!
- Domain Name Idea – (example: www.AnyTots.com)
If you have already bought a domain name before and has not used it to start a blog, that’s fine! I’ll guide you in setting it up. I have 3 other domain names as well. I bought them before anyone else can buy them. Hehe. If you’re just trying to come up with a name right now, try to stick to 15 characters if you want to have the same twitter name (twitter name is limited to 15 characters). Cost: $14.95/year.
- Hosting – (Siteground.com)
Where your website will live on the internet. It’s important to have the right hosting. If you get the wrong one, you risk having downtime &/or a bad customer service when your site is down. Cost: as low as $3.95/month. Today and the whole weekend, part of the Black Friday Deal, it’s only $2.95/month.
Siteground was recommended by a lot of bloggers when I was trying to move my blog from blogger to wordpress.org. It’s also a recommended hosting of choice by WordPress.org themselves. They have a really fast support team.
Whenever I call, it was never like those cable companies where you hear unending prompts of “press 1 for this, press 2 for that” and when you finally get the right number, they tell you there’s a 15-minute wait for the next representative. I hate that! So I’m happy that Siteground is nothing like that. I even called right now just to check again. They just ask you to press 3 options: sales, technical support, and billing and already moves you to a representative to talk to. Hallelujah! They also have a live chat feature, I have yet to use it though, I prefer hearing my questions answered.
- Blogging Platform – (WordPress.org)
WordPress.org is what we use. It is free, it just needs hosting as mentioned above.
Other blogging platforms like blogger.com is a free platform + free hosting but it is frustrating because you cannot customize it so much (we came from there and moved AnyTots.com this year because it is limited and frustrating). WordPress.COM is also a free platform + free hosting but you CANNOT make money from it, it has restrictions too. Again, WordPress.ORG is what you need! It’s an easy 1 click install with a Siteground hosting, just trying to explain in case you’re confused by the difference.
- Blog Theme – the design of your blog. There are free and there are premium themes. I used a premium theme.
My favorite blog themes are from Restored316 (take their quiz to figure which one works best for you). AnyTots.com is currently using Divine Theme by Restored316 (this is a magazine style blog theme). You can also check StudioPress.com. I’m still researching which blog theme to use for 101partyideas.com
FREE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO STARTING A BLOG
STEP 1: GET THE HOSTING
- Visit Siteground.com
- Click the “WordPress Services” category
- Click “Learn More” box under WordPress Hosting.
4. Choose a Plan depending on how many visitors you think you’ll get monthly. You can start with the $3.95 plan and upgrade as you grow.
For Black Friday and this whole weekend, it starts at $2.95/month. See below for the price difference.
TYPICAL PRICE: 60% OFF. Price goes back to regular price of $9.95/month depending on how long you lock in the price. 1yr, 2yr, or 3yr contract. Keep reading to understand.
BLACK FRIDAY HOSTING DEAL: 70% OFF AT SITEGROUND:
5. Type in the Domain Name (example: www.myblog.com) that you want to use or input a Domain Name you previously bought elsewhere then click “PROCEED”.
Try to stick to a .com extension (example: anytots.com versus anytots.org) and just choose another name if it’s not available.
If you already have a domain name you previously bought from another company, don’t worry, you just have to call them to transfer it over to Siteground once you finish setting up your hosting. Don’t forget to mark the “I already have a Domain” checkbox for that. See below.
6. Input your payment information.
7. Choose your services:
For the “Data Center”, choose the one that’s closest to your location.
For the “Period”, choose 12 months, 24 months, or 36 months. The rate will be the same monthly for any of the 3 plans but after your term is over, the monthly hosting goes back to the regular price ($9.95/m) so the longer you choose, the more you save in the end. I honestly didn’t know how long I’ll be blogging in the beginning. But here I am, 5 years into it and I want to have another 2 blogs.
If you get your web hosting while the 70% off deal is on. For the first year, your hosting is only $2.95/month or $35.40 a year.
BLACK FRIDAY DEAL:
SAMPLE FOR STARTUP PLAN, 12 MONTHS LOCK IN, WITH DOMAIN NAME, PRIVACY & SCANNER.
The deal is only available for the first year though unfortunately and goes back to the regular price of $9.95/month after 1 year. If you want to save more and have the budget to pay for it now – choose the 2-year or 3-year hosting, which is $3.95/month (their regular discount). But you lock that price in for 2 and 3 years depending on how long you choose before it goes back to regular price of $9.95/m after your term is over. So 2 years of hosting at $3.95 – only $94.80. For 3 years, it is $142.20.
Hope that is clear. If not, leave your comments and I’ll try to help you understand better.
The Domain Privacy & SG Site Scanner is optional but I do suggest getting them to protect your information and to protect your site. I once bought a domain name without paying for the domain privacy and I kept getting junk mail associated with that account so do get the domain privacy.
8. Click “Proceed to Customer Area”.
Your account was successfully created pops up after you’ve paid for your hosting. Click the “Proceed to Customer Area”.
9. Website Setup Wizard. Choose an option and Click “Proceed”. In our case it’s the first one – “Get WordPress preinstalled”.
10. Account Setup Assistant. Fill in your Login Details (this is for WordPress already and not Siteground) and choose a Blog Design Template (blog theme) then click “SUBMIT” on the bottom.
We can change your theme after setting up so just choose any for now. There are tons of blog themes available, from free to premium.
11. Congratulations! You’ve set up your hosting! After clicking “SUBMIT” on step 10 – you will see the screen below then just click the “SITEGROUND” logo on the upper left.
12. Login to Siteground and Click “Go to Admin Panel”
If you have a domain name you bought elsewhere (GoDaddy for example) prior to purchasing a hosting today, you just have to call SiteGround so they can e-mail you the NameServers that you needed to input on GoDaddy to point your domain name to your new site. After calling Siteground and getting the e-mail. Call GoDaddy or wherever you purchase your domain from and they will guide you. After the NameServers have been put in. You may need to wait a few hours to 24hours for this to take effect. I did this today with no problem.
For those who bought the domain from Siteground while getting the hosting, go to step 13 after clicking “go to admin panel”.
13. WordPress.org dashboard. This is now the dashboard that you’ll see everytime you wish to design your blog and create a post.
To customize your theme:
- 13a – click “Appearance”
- 13b – click “Themes”
- 13c – click “Customize on the theme you wish to use or
- 13d – click “Add New Theme” to pick a new theme
14. To see your blog, click the “My Blog” in the top left corner then click “Visit My Site” below it. Or you can just type the url. For example – https://101partyideas.com which is my second blog as of today. I still have to work on the design though.
How the Blog looks like with the Cohen theme. You can start shopping for themes.
IMPORTANT: Everytime you wish to visit your WordPress blog dashboard to create a new post and do anything with your blog. Just type in the URL: https://yourblogsname.com/wp-admin/ and it will lead you to this where you put in your login and password and it will bring you to your dashboard.
That’s it! Hope you found this Step by Step Guide to Starting a Blog useful. I will have a complete Step By Step Guide to Blogging eCourse soon that will help you learn everything about blogging because I know for a newbie blogger, you don’t even know what you need or what you need to learn. Most importantly, the part about How to Make Money Blogging, so visit us again!
You can also join my blogging FB group for updates on new tutorials (it’s still new) so give me time to set it up. I just wanted to put this tutorial out today so everyone can take advantage of the 70% off blog hosting deal.