How to Start Your Own Blog
A Step By Step Guide to learn how to make your own blog in just 15 Min!
Updated August 1st, 2020
Building your own blog doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive.
You can get started today by following my simple, easy-to-follow steps here at Build Your Own Blog. In just a few hours, you can start using a functional, quality blog that gets results for your business or whatever your blogging goals may be.
Build Your Own Blog is here for new bloggers as well as experienced blog owners who want to learn more about effective, results driven blogging.
My name is Matthew Loomis, and I’ve been blogging professionally and for fun since 2005. I put together this total blog building program so that more people can get out of the rat race and find meaningful work they love to do through their own high quality blog.
This is your opportunity to do the same. Or get left behind.
Are you ready to Start Your Own Blog? Get started now with the first step in this guide
If you feel overwhelmed right now, take a deep breath. This guide helps to build your own blog without any prior technical experience.
You can save yourself a lot of time and headaches by following this guide. I’ve already made the early mistakes that you can avoid with my help. This free blog puts all the information you need in one trusted location. You can start your own blog today and then I’ll show you how to turn your blog into a profitable website. I have helped teenagers and people in their 90s with setting up a blog in 20 minutes (or less.) And I can help you make your own blog, too. Remember, if you get stuck at any point, please message me and I’ll help you get unstuck.
Skip the rest of the introduction and start building your blog!
Do you have something to share with the world? The fact you are here now indicates you do indeed have something to share. If you are wanting to reach people outside of your family, coworkers,
neighborhood, or other places in your life, then the internet is the place to be. You just need a place where people can find you online.
What is a blog?
Still today I get asked, “what is a blog”? Well, a blog is simply a regularly updated website or web page, typically run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style. Most bloggers write like they talk. They did not start out as talented writers. They wrote like they talked, and picked up a few page formatting skills along the way.
This website has lots of free tips about page formatting and writing that work with any type of blog. You can start a successful blog in practically any blog niches imaginable.
Can’t Wait To Get Started? Take me to 1st step in the guide
Blogging is a great business tool that provides the freedom to be your own boss, call your own shots, make more money than you ever dreamed of, and spend more time with those you love. A blog can not only improve your business but also change your life.
Why Blogging Works
Bloggers develop awesome relationships with their readers by sharing their personal stories in their posts. Personal stories make connections with people, and personal opinions spark conversations, which build relationships. See how to blog works? Your blog can have a comments section where readers provide feedback to your posts. Blog comments often add additional material to a post that is interesting and fun to read. This direct connection between blogger and reader happens faster and easier than a newspaper or magazine. You will connect with like-minded people and share ideas, stories, and even make new friends.
The best way to start a blog is through relationship building. Process that naturally comes with blogging can open a door for you to make money with your website, which we will talk about in this guide later on. Another reason why blogging works is that no matter the topic, your readers don’t expect you to know everything about a topic. So relax. You don’t have to be an “expert” to enjoy or succeed in blogging. For example, you don’t have to be a former NFL head coach to start a blog about pro football. You don’t have to be a licensed chef to start a food blog. If you love food, that passion will show through your blog and attract like-minded people!
Passion is a good start – but you need something else to succeed: A GUIDE.
I love helping bloggers who are passionate about their topic. Passion is important for long-term success. However, if you don’t have a guide to help you get there, passion gets wasted. I’m here to help you channel your passion into a productive direction. Let me walk you through this process and help you get the end result you want.
See if any of these reasons to start a blog describing why you are doing this:
Share your story. I get emails all the time from people who want to share their story because they want to help other people going through the same thing. Things like living with a disability, dealing with mental illness, finding a job, finding true love – you can share your entire life story with the world, or you can make your blog private and only let certain people see it. I’ve seen some people start a blog and use it as a diary…they simply share what they did that day so friends and family can keep up-to-date.
Find customers for their business. These days we know that Google helps people find practically anything they’re looking for. This includes information about all types of business…Need new tires? Google “new tires near me.” Want to sell your home? You pull out Google to find the right real estate agent to work with. Businesses of all types are using their blog to bring in new customers.
Build a Community. Blogging is interactive. You write a post and readers give feedback in the comments. This is how like-minded people form a community. A blog can be a magnet that attracts similar people, giving them a chance to connect, build a relationship, and form a community.
Make money from home. There are some bloggers who earn well over six figures per month. Others make a thousand per month. Many don’t make anything. Why? They don’t have a guide. Or they read too many different guides and get confused. This guide goes into more detail on how to make money with a blog later on. If you’re looking for a way to generate income, you can get off to a good start by using this blog setup guide, which sets you up with the type of blog you need to make money. Not all blogs are compatible with making money – particularly free blogs.
A Self Hosted WordPress Blog is the right choice for making money online. Get started setting up your Self Hosted WordPress Blog with Bluehost
Alright, now let me show you how to start a blog, okay?
How to Start a Blog in 4 Steps
Right now, I can show you how to start your own blog in four simple steps!
You can get Steps 1 thru 3 done in the next 20 to 30 minutes.
- Pick a “domain name” for your blog. (If you already know this, skip to Step 2)
- Register your blog with hosting.
- Design your blog by choosing a WordPress theme.
- Write and publish your first post.
Let’s get started!
Step 1: Pick a Blog Name
Already have a domain name picked out? Jump to Step 2
Once you know the blog topic you are passionate about and want to spend time on, then you need to choose a good blog name. If you can’t decide on what to blog about, these three things might help you find a great topic just right for you:
Hobbies & Interests – What do you like to do in your spare time? Collecting things, following a sports team, cooking, traveling, these are some classic examples. However, if you have a weird hobby, that could be a perfect blog. Don’t rule it out! Bigfoot has made many bloggers good money. 🙂 Star Wars has turned a lot of fans into bloggers. Remember, you can connect with a GLOBAL audience on the internet, so if you want to find people that share your hobbies, think globally.
Life Challenges – Good or bad, life experiences teach us lessons and provide knowledge for others willing to listen. Sharing your challenges, the highs and lows, can inspire and educate other people…maybe even save their life! It depends on the topic, right? I have helped people with fibromyalgia use a blog to help others with the same condition. I have helped someone with Aspergers start a blog to encourage and inspire other people with Asperger Syndrome. I have helped mothers start “mommy blogs”. I’ve helped dads start dad blogs…whatever your challenge, that story could really help someone if you shared it on a blog.
Your Personal Story – This is a blog that tells your story over the course of time. If you are 40 years old, you probably could tell enough stories to last for 100 blog posts. You could even be only 18 years old, yet have a powerful personal story with lots to share. Some bloggers like this type of blog because they can talk about a variety of topics.
When you nail down your blog topic, you will then be ready for the next step – Choosing Your Blog Name.
You want the blog name to be memorable and the name should communicate clearly what the blog is about.
Since Bluehost is so good, their rates tend to be higher than many other hosts. But the good news for you is that Bluehost agreed to give a huge discount for Build Your Own Blog users.
Following any links here in this guide to Bluehost will get you a huge discount for your hosting service. Just click through and you will see the Exclusive offer for BuildYourOwnBlog users for the first year. Pretty cool, eh?
FULL DISCLOSURE: Some links on this site are affiliate links. Bluehost compensates me when you use this discount link. This enables me to provide you with the free blogging tips on this site.
The closer your blog name reflects the main purpose of the blog, the better. As you brainstorm name options, remember to not get too attached to a particular word. Two reasons why: 1. that name might already be taken, so you want to have some backup options. 2. That one word you’re stuck on probably won’t make or break your blog. If you have a blog about cars, your name doesn’t HAVE to include “cars.” Words like “automobile”, “ride,” or a specific brand like “F150” would let people know that your blog is about cars.
If you plan to write on a wide variety of topics, you may want to use your own name for the blog. Or something like “Mike’s Musings” or “Tina’s Life” or whatever. If your name is taken, you can add in your middle name, or go with something like “Joe Blow Blog” or “Blogging with Joe.”
Choosing your domain extension (a.k.a. the “domain suffix”)
The domain extension is what you choose to have at the end of your domain name. A .com is the most widely used extension, and others include .org, .net, and even .blog. In fact, the possible choices in domain extensions exploded a couple of years ago.
So, if you choose a domain you like, and you find it has been taken, you might be able to simply change the extension and get what you want. For example, bowlingtips.com might be taken, but bowlingtips.net might be available.
To find out if your domain is available, you will start the blog setup process and in just a few clicks, you will see a page that looks like this. You will type in your domain name and choose your extension, then click “next” to find out if it’s available.
Add dashes between words – For example, pro-bowler.net
Add little words – “a”, “my”, or “the” could do the trick. Example: thebestrestaurants.com instead of bestrestaurants.com.
Step 2: Set Up Blog with Hosting
With your name picked out, you are now ready to get started with the blog setup.
I’ll walk you through this process below — a total tech newbie can do this.
Hosting, or a blog host company, is how your files for your blog are stored and how others find your blog when they type in your blog name. A blog host is necessary to have a blog.
Our Special: Right now Bluehost is offering a sale for BYOB visitors on hosting for just $2.75/month instead of $7.99/month. That’s a sweet reduction you should grab while available.
Get started and click here to get the special $2.75 per month rate on Bluehost.
For hosting, I recommend Bluehost. I like Bluehost and use it for several reasons:
- Bluehost will register your blog domain name for free. No one can take it once you do this.
- You get a free “one click” installation of WordPress blogging software. I will show you the one button you click to do this.
- WordPress highly recommends Bluehost, so the two of them work well together.
- Bluehost currently hosts over 2 million blogs.
Their customer service is helpful and available 24/7 by phone or web chat.
- Bluehost has a money-back guarantee if you happen to not be satisfied.
Every Bluehost link on this site will get you a special discount of normally $2.75 per month for hosting. I’m an affiliate with Bluehost, and they compensate me when you purchase through my link, which is how I am able to deliver so much free blogging tips to you. This does not raise your rate at all. In fact, my relationship with them lowers your cost. In fact, check out the current sale below.
If you need any help setting up your blog with this tutorial, you can contact me and I will help you.
The other thing your blog must have is software. In this guide I will show you how to set up a blog using the WordPress software. I highly recommend WordPress because it is easy to use for people who have no technical background. It is also extremely customizable, and serves more blogs than any other software!
FULL DISCLOSURE: Bluehost compensates me for referrals who purchase through my link. This enables me to provide tons of blogging tips for FREE, so if you do get stuck on the setup, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 3: Blog Configuration
First of all you have to login into your WordPress blog. Write the domain name of your website into the broswer (Chrome, Firefox, Safari etc,…) and add /wp-admin to the very end of it.
Your login page should look like that:
If you wonder how to login into your blog, than check out the e-mail you got from Bluehost. There you’ll find:
- Your Admin Username: xxxxxxxx
- Your Admin Password: xxxxxxxx
Great! So far so good. Now you are officially at your blog. This environment called “BackEnd“. Why?? Because you are now working back stage on your freshly build blog.
Check out my video below where i will show you how to configure your blog.
Step 4: Design Your Blog
Now you are ready to create a password for your blog. Once you do that, you can choose a free design template for your blog (which can easily be changed later at any time.)
How to Make Your Own Blog with a WordPress Theme Design
Are you now logged in to your WordPress dashboard? This is the administrative hub area, where all changes to your blog are made.
One thing I love about WordPress software is how much variety it provides for design. Create your own blog that matches your personal style, and with a WordPress blog, you get to create a website that looks unique – like you! This can be done in just a few clicks.
What is a blog theme anyway? WordPress design layouts are called “Themes”. Whatever theme you choose will control all visual elements of your blog.
When you are ready to install your first Theme or change your theme, just put your pointer on the Appearance tab on the left menu inside your WordPress dashboard, then scroll down and click Themes.
Once you click Themes (under Appearance), you will see a few themes already installed. Usually, they are the yearly themes, like Twenty Eighteen, Twenty Seventeen, etc. These themes are easy to work with, and can serve you well, so to get things rolling, so why not start out using one of these free themes?
If you already have a Theme in mind, then you should go with it. Let’s say for now you are using one of the Themes already in your blog. One example might be Twenty Fifteen.
You would just hover your pointer over the Twenty Fifteen theme and click the “Activate” button. Boom! You’re done! With one click, your blog design is changed.
Good news: You are not stuck with only the Themes automatically included in your blog. You can choose from literally thousands of other free or premium Theme options. Click here to check them out. To install a new theme, click the Appearance tab again on the left menu and then click the “Add New” button atop the page. Looks like this:
You’ll see below what the Theme search page will look like. There’s a button called “Feature Filter” that enables you to search for themes with specific qualities, like color, layout, and many more. Check the boxes you want, then click “Apply Filters”.
Now you can browse your search results, which bring up Themes that have the traits you are looking for. Once you find one you like, click the “Install” button.
After the Theme is installed, click “Active” and you should now be able to see it on your blog. Check it out!
Changing your design is so simple with WordPress Themes.
Keep this in your back pocket for later: If you ever want to upgrade to a paid Theme, you can choose ElegantThemes. Click on this link and look for creative and beautiful themes. Currently they have a summer sale of 20% off when you join! Its better to have a unique theme that fits to your needs. You want to stand out form the rest of the website. ElegantThemes sells a lifetime theme package for $150 including their very easy page builder Divi.
FULL DISCLOSURE: Elegant Themes compensates me for referrals whoever purchase through my link. It enables me to keep my website alive and give you blogging tips.
List of the most popular Logo Design Tools
Step 5: Learning WordPress / Publish Your First Blog Post
Let’s now show you how to start blogging! 🙂
On the left menu, there is a tab called “Posts”. Click it.
You will probably see some example posts already there. All new WordPress blogs have a few default posts. You can delete those by clicking “Trash” under the post.
To start a new post, click the “Add New” link.
This takes you to the Post Editor. Here, you can type in your blog post title in the top bar, then start writing in the lower large box.
To add visuals to your post, you want to click the “Add Media” button…
…then click “Select Files” to upload a photo or graphic from your computer. In here, you can adjust the size of your visual. When ready, click “Insert into post” and the picture will be added.
Then, when your post is ready, click the “Publish” button on the right side of the screen.
Make Sure Your Blog is “Public”
If people cannot yet see your blog, and instead see a “Coming Soon” page, you need to make your blog public.
This is done by clicking the Bluehost tab at the top of your left menu in the dashboard, then click the blue “Launch” button to remove the “Coming Soon” page.
Congratulations! You’re now a real blogger!
Let’s now take a look at what to do next.
If you want to learn more about how to configure and manage WordPress than click on the links below. I created a list of popular tutorials found on my blog:
Step 6: Promote Your Blog
Blogging for beginners requires you to get out of your comfort zone and start telling the world, “Hey! I did this! Take a look!”
The best way to promote your blog is to post links to your articles on your social media accounts. This is an easy and free way to let your friends see your new post, and hopefully, they will share it as well. A well done blog post has the potential to go viral on social media!
Along with social media, an even better promotional tool is email marketing, which is why I recommend getting started on your email list right away. My video course Get a Professional Looking Blog shows you how to set up your email list, so visitors will give you their email address (with their permission.) Then, you can notify them every time a new blog post comes out.
Email marketing covers too much ground to get into here. There is a guide to email marketing on my blog (highly recommended.)
Step 7: Make A Living From Blogging
Once your blog is built, and you’re posting content people want, and getting traffic to your site by promoting your posts, you are now ready to starting blogging for money.
How to make money with a blog for beginners:
- Promote other people’s products or services – this is also called “affiliate marketing.” You can become an Amazon affiliate or join any type of affiliate program you want. Or you can simply promote someone else’s stuff and earn a commission. This is something you can do right away.
- Advertising – another way to monetize right away is to sell advertising space to your blog. When you build a huge audience, other businesses will come to you, wanting to buy ad space from you. A simple way to get started is to do Google Adsense. This program finds the ads that your audience will appreciate, and they put the ads on your site for you. All you do is place the Google Adsense code on your blog and let Google do the heavy lifting. You simply collect the payments. I have a guide that shows you how to place Google Adsense on your blog and how to make money blogging.
- Sell your own products/services – you may already have something in mind here. If not, that’s okay. Build your audience and they will let you know what they want you to provide them.
Still need help?
My hope is this one page guide has helped you start your own blog.
However, I’ve got good news if you are still needing help on one or more of the steps: this site has a more detailed step-by-step guide. You can find the detailed pages of each step at the top right of this page (smartphone users will find them on the bottom of this page.)
Message me if you need anything. You can use Instant Message in the lower right corner of this website. Your message will be emailed to me if I am not available.
This step-by-step guide has shown thousands of people how to be a blogger and it should provide you with everything you need to start a blog and succeed long term.
Again, please contact me at any time if you need some help or advice. I love to talk shop with bloggers, and would love to hear from you!