So you’re interested in joining the world of blogging?
We were overwhelmed when we first started using anything outside of Blogger, so here’s our guide to getting a jumpstart:
Step 1. Pick a Name
What will your blog be called? Translate this into a domain name (ours is “the-wanderlusters.com”). There are plenty of sites that let you search names for free and see what’s available. We used Inexpensive Domains because, well, it was inexpensive. This step seems easy, but it seems we spent hours coming up with brilliant names only to find out they were already taken.
Step 2. Host Your Site
Now that you have an idea for your site, you need someone to host it online. This is essentially like renting space online to show off your blog. There are a few options for doing this:
- Host for free off a platform like WordPress.com. The only trade-off is a change in your domain name to include wordpress: “the-wanderlusters.wordpress.com”
- Use a site like Bluehost that will take care of steps 1 and 2 together: it will host your site and cover the cost of the domain name for free. We’ve never used it, so I can’t comment on it past that.
Step 3. Chose a Blogging Platform
Now that you have the online space, you need some way to write posts and put up pictures. We use WordPress, a very easy-to-use and free blogging software. I have no data to back this up, but I’m sure it is the most widely used software for blogging. And really, there’s a reason: it’s user friendly, flexible, and allows you to customize your site as much or as little as you like. Plus it has a free app so you can publish when you’re on the go (handy for travel bloggers like us).
Step 4. Beautify Your Site
Now it’s time for the fun stuff: make your site pretty and personal. Once again, there are a few options here:
- If you’re looking for a free option, WordPress.com offers a number of free themes to chose from.
- If you’re a bit more hardcore into blogging/decorating/coding, there are a number of premium themes to chose from for a one-time cost. We use the Genesis Framework which then gives you the option of numerous fancy child themes to chose from through Studiopress. These themes make it easy to fake that you truly know what you are doing.
After installing those, you are set to start publishing content on your blog! How exciting. Feel free to share your new creations in the comments below; we’d love to check them out.