This post will cover all the information you need to learn how to start a blog. Blogging can change your life, help you launch your writing career, and be a source of steady income.
The good news is it’s a lot easier than it sounds to start a blog. You can create one within 15-20 minutes, and you can do it all by yourself.
Get your freelance blog up and running right now by following these 3 steps!
- Pick a domain and purchase hosting
- Install WordPress
- Pick a Theme
Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. I have used all of the products listed below and recommend them because they are helpful and are companies that I trust.
Step 1: Domain Name and Hosting
To get started, you first need to pick a domain name for your blog. For freelance writing, I suggest either choosing your name, or the name of your registered company. I personally have two blogs–one for Ashley R. Cummings, and another for my content writing business, Searchlight Content. You can choose whatever domain name you want; just make sure your domain name complements your brand.
Brainstorm a few different names, and then check on Bluehost to make sure the domain name you want is available.
You can check if your domain name is available right here.
You can also head straight to Bluehost, and enter your desired domain into the box that looks like this:
Once you have selected a domain name, it’s time to pick a hosting package. I have the Starter Package, because it’s the cheapest if you pay in one lump sum, and works perfectly for me.
Once you select your domain name and package, Bluehost will ask you for some basic account information, your package request options (screenshot below), and ask for a payment method. As soon as you have completed these steps, you’ll be set up with hosting, and you’re ready to install WordPress.
IMPORTANT: When I first started, I didn’t know that you only needed 1 hosting account for all of your domains. I accidentally purchased 3 separate hosting accounts. I quickly learned that you only need one hosting account for all of your domains. This means you can set up multiple blogs under one hosting account.
Step 2: Installing WordPress
WordPress is the best blogging platform on the market for bloggers. It’s intuitive, easy to learn, and has the best plugins.
Here’s how to install WordPress.
1. Login to your Bluehost account, scroll down to the Software/Services section and click on the WordPress logo.
2. Then, click the option “Install a brand new version.”
Your installation preferences on the next page should be as follows:
- Step 1: Choose the latest version of Stable (pick whatever Stable option is most recent in WordPress). For the section “where would you like WordPress installed, just verify that your domain name is selected, and leave the blank after the forward slash empty.
- Step 2: Advanced Options (you don’t need to do anything here).
- Step 3: Indicate that you have read the “Terms and Conditions.”
Then, press Complete.
If you get the warning box below, just press “overwrite existing files,” and everything will work out great.
Your installation will then finish. Once the installation is complete, make sure to write down the login url, which will usually be www.yourdomainname.com/wp-admin. Then, write down your username and password, because you will need it to login.
Now you are ready to log in and get started. Click on the Login URL (mine is: www.ashleyrcummings.com/wp-admin), enter your username and password, and you’re ready to rock and roll!
Step 3: Pick a Theme
Congratulations! You now officially have a freelance writing blog! Feels good, right? This last step is the part of the process that can take a bit more time, because it involves you making decisions on how you want things to look.
To pick a theme, you can either pick a free WordPress theme here, or you can get all fancy pants, and pay for a theme.
I use the StudioPress Genesis Framework, because I think it’s perfect for freelance writers. It’s simple, easy on the eyes, and elegant. Of course, you can choose from any of the StudioPress Themes, and pick anything that tickles your fancy.
Congratulations on getting your new blog up and running! To enroll in a more comprehensive and FREE tutorial on blogging, click on the link below.