How to Start a Blog!
You’re thinking about starting a blog?
That’s great news!! I truly think there aren’t enough in the world. Maybe you want to share your collection of eastern European recipes, your unique furniture restoration techniques, or your amazing crafty abilities. You have the blogging bug, you can write and you are EXCITED. I’m excited for you.
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First things first, you need to choose a blogging platform. There are a lot of options out there, but the most popular options are Blogger, WordPress (.com or .org), Tumblr and Squarespace. I’m going to let other bloggers explain to you the differences here – The Pros and Cons of the Four Major Blogging Platforms (Squarespace wasn’t invented when this was written) or here – Choosing a Blogging Platform.
Personally, I have used Blogger, WordPress.com and WordPress.org. I liked them all and there are great reasons to use each, but ultimately I have chosen to self-host my blog with WordPress.org.
Self-Hosting Your Blog
I like the Self-Hosting option because I wanted to monetize my blog (i.e. make money blogging) – WordPress.com doesn’t allow for most forms of monetization. Self-hosting did require me to learn a little coding and also to spend some money. All worth it in my eyes. You may not agree – in that case stick with Blogger (if you want to monetize) or WordPress.com.
I researched different hosting companies and ended up choosing Bluehost. They make it really easy to download the WordPress software and setting up my domain was a breeze. I had a blog hosted on WordPress.com that I was transferring over – if you are just starting out, you can just follow the instructions once you’re ready to go.
I followed some on-line tutorials to help me transfer my blog from WordPress.com. If you’re not feeling up to the task or don’t have the time (and don’t mind spending a little more money), you have a few options. One, Bluehost offers assistance transferring over your current blog from WordPress.com or Blogger.
Picking a Name
I think it is important to spend some time picking a name. Unless you want to go through the process of rebranding, this name will be your identity for the life of your blog.
This post by Moz tells you 12 rules for choosing the right domain name. I originally started at as Honey B’s and Birch Trees. Gotta love that mouthful, right? I switched over to Honey and Birch (short and sweet) when I moved to a self-hosted blog on Bluehost.
I buy all of my domains from Namecheap. They are cheap, and the process is super easy.
Now it’s time to download WordPress. Bluehost will guide you through the process in the “Build a Website” section. Just click on “WordPress” and then follow the instructions. You can totally do it yourself FREE if you don’t want to shell out any additional dollars. The directions are clear and if you aren’t transferring any data over from an old blog, it will be really simple.
Once you have that set up, you are ready to go!!
Make it Pretty – Themes
There are so many themes out there to beautify your blog after you have WordPress set up. If you aren’t sure where to start, use the free theme that WordPress starts you with. There are also tons of free themes available through WordPress (you can browse through them here.)
Other Food Blogging Resources