This is a really detailed guide to help you through the exact steps you will need to take to get your blog from idea through to reality – and I will be with you every step of the way!
By the time you have followed the steps in this post you will be ready to write your very first post! Exciting stuff!
First things first – let me explain a little about the framework around a blog – as it can seem really daunting when you start out.
Basically you are here because you want to end up with a site that you can add articles and pictures to easily and quickly – one that looks good and you are proud of. You’ve got something to share with the world and need a way to do that….
To do this you need to have: –
- Your own website – so you will need a url that represents your site.
- Once you have your url you will need space on the web to create your site and let the world see it. You get a HOST to do this for you. They simply allow people to see your url and what’s on it.
- To get things on the site, you need to have a platform to do it easily (otherwise you would be coding it yourself which wouldn’t be easy!) – and WordPress.org offers the industry standard for this. You simply install WordPress onto your site, and then you are ready to go!.
- To make your site look great, you can add a Theme – which is simply code that makes it look the way you want -and plugins which can help your site to do certain functionality you want. You can play around with themes and plugins at the start to get exactly what you want – but when you have something you are happy with (at least for now!) you can start writing articles and creating your site. Exciting hey!
This post simply takes you through the steps to set up your site ready for writing those articles – so now you know what you need – this is the quick checklist of what will be covered: –
- Buying and registering your domain
- Buying Hosting (and linking to your domain)
- Installing WordPress
- How to install a Theme
- Backing up your blog
- Making your blog secure
Please don’t let all this technical stuff scare you (I know I was petrified of getting things wrong when I started out). I am here to take you through the exact steps I used to set up this blog, so you will be able to do it quickly and easily (I use specific companies that I can recommend to you, but also give you options for other well known companies so you have a choice).
STEP #1 – REGISTER YOUR DOMAIN
Having picked your domain name, you need to now buy it.
There are two ways to do this. Either buying it along with your hosting (and if you choose this way, just go straight to STEP #2) OR buy it separately.
I have always bought my domain names separately as I prefer this setup – but it’s a totally personal preference of course.
There are various places you can buy your domain name from – I have always used 123-reg so will use this for my example: –
Go to 123-reg.co.uk and click on DOMAIN NAMES in the menu.
Type in your url into the search bar and all the options will come up for you to decide what to buy (in the example screenshot I have looked for the url organisemyhousetest.com)
As all extensions come up in green, they are all available.
I advise getting whichever domain extensions you need to get (I have .com and .co.uk as I wanted the .com as my main domain name but I live in the uk so also got the .co.uk extension as well. You can forward that domain to your main domain at a later stage if you like but we won’t go into this now as it’s not needed at this stage).
When you go to checkout, you will be asked if you also want a few other things. The only thing you need to decide on at this stage is domain privacy. This is privacy from people being able to find out that you own that domain – which is public information. If you want to stay private, then this may be worth doing (I have done it for OrganiseMyHouse).
Once you have paid for your domain, you will have an account setup with 123-reg where you can manage your domain(s) going forward (you will be able to get to this by clicking on CONTROL PANEL in the top menu of the homepage):-
For now though – that’s your domain name sorted! (If you go to your domain name on the web now you will see a 123-reg holding page, as they are looking after it for you – so you now need to get your blog up and running).
Next step is to get your domain hosted on the web…