When I setup my first blog, I didn’t have any knowledge of websites, coding and the internet in general. I had to look up instructions on different websites and it took forever to complete.
The process is very easy, you just need to know what to do. Since I wanted to start a new website anyway, I figured I’d document the steps as a help to others who want to do the same.
Simply follow these steps and you’ll have your blog up and running within three days, but most likely a lot sooner.
There are basically three things you need: first, you need to register a domain. Secondly, you need to buy a hosting service. I used Bluehost for both. You can get your domain with a different registrar if you want, but then you need to connect your domain to your hosting service first.
The third step is installing a Content Management System (CMS). Technically you don’t need this, you can build your website by writing your own HTML pages. You’ll need to know how to code though. I used WordPress for my site, it’s the most used website platform available. It’s very easy to use and offers great flexibility. You don’t need any internet or coding expertise to be able to use it so I recommend you go with it.
I’m using Bluehost for my domain registrar and hosting service. I recommend you do the same, as I’ve had great experiences with them. The hosting (including one domain) will cost you less than $100 per year.
Step one & two: Sign up with Bluehost and choose your domain
When you sign up for the hosting service, choose a domain and follow the instructions. Your domain will be registered, which may take between 24 and 72 hours. Most of the time, it won’t take that long though. To see if the domain has been registered, simply type in the URL of your site. If your browser can’t find it, it hasn’t been done yet. If it is, you’ll see something like this:
This means the domain is live, but you haven’t build your website yet. Bluehost shows a standard “parking” page until you’ve uploaded your website files.
Step two: Install WordPress
Installing WordPress is an easy process. Login to your Bluehost Control Panel and click on Hosting, the second tab in the main menu. Click on the WordPress symbol, located in the second menu from the top.
You’ll be taken to a third party website, Mojo Marketplace. They will take care of the WordPress installation for you. Click on the green start button to begin the installation process.
Next you have to select the domain where you want to install WordPress. You probably only have one, unless you registered multiple domains when you signed up with Bluehost.
Next, follow the instructions during the installation and make sure to note down the WordPress login details. Once you’re done, type in http://your-domain/wp-admin. This will take you to the login screen. Fill in your login details. You’ll be now taken to the WordPress dashboard. That’s it, you’re ready to write your first post!
WordPress is pretty self explanatory and easy to use, but if you’re completely new to computers you might want to check out this beginners tutorial. You can also check out WP Beginner for more information on WordPress and if you run into trouble check out the official WordPress support site.
Last but not least, don’t get confused between wordpress.com and wordpress.org. At wordpress.com you can start your own blog without hosting your own website. Although this could save you a few bucks, I recommend against this. You’ll be very limited and for the price of a beer a month you’ll have your own website. If you’re in doubt, read this article that lists the pros vs the cons.
Another good resource on WordPress is First Site Guide. They are an educational website aimed at people who are looking to learn more about the online world. They’ve created several free online guides followed by PDF’s, WordPress video tutorials and other web development resources that will come handy to all beginners who are about to establish themselves on the internet.
If you have any questions feel free to comment or contact me. Happy blogging!
*featured image by Nemo
*disclosure: some links in this article are affiliate links, which means that if you buy the product I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support, it helps me keeping my blog almost add-free.