How to Create a Blog in WordPress Step by StepThere are different ways to create a blog on WordPress and all the different methods are correct, I will share with you how we (Professionals) create WordPress blogs. First things first, you should know that there are two types of WordPress out there; one is available on WordPress.com and the other on wordpress.org. This guide is for the wordpress.org version which is 100% free and you run it on your host and can do whatever you want with it.
Things you will need to start a WordPress BlogApart from motivation to start a blog, you will need the following to start a WordPress Blog:
- Domain Name – Just visit namecheap.com to know what I am talking about. If you want something local type web domain registrars and you will find a good registrar that you can buy a domain from.
- Web Hosting – I like to call this the home for your blog.
- Ability to follow instructions and of course your time and internet connection.
- Register your first domain name
- Choose a hosting account
- Install WordPress (both beginner and advance, depending on the hosting you’ve chosen). I will also show you how to install WordPress on your computer.
- Setup a basic theme
- Choose the essential plugins for your blog
- Move around your new set WordPress blog.
Step 1: Register your first domain name
What is a domain name?A domain name is the address of your website, this is the name that people type in the browser when they want to visit your website. Our domain name is nabaleka.com. important to note; a domain name is not www.nabaleka.com or https://nabaleka.com but nabaleka.com
How do I choose a domain name?You must have heard of .com, .net, .org, .info and many others well these are the different types of domain extensions you can choose to register. We always recommend .com to our clients since it works well with their businesses. There are also country-specific domain names that end with country codes such as .uk – you guessed right for the United Kingdom and many others. We only recommend these country-specific to companies that only operate in a certain country and maybe have a physical address to those countries. Country-specific domain names are not good for blogs that want to make money in future and target a global audience. Having said that, you want a .com domain that is between 3 to 7, can be longer or shorter and if it is an English word, chances are that the domain name is already registered. In the past, they would recommend you choose a domain name close to what you will be blogging about, i.e if you blog about shoes, you will choose something like bestshoes.com or shoesblog.com. But we recommend, you choose anything that you want and if you are a brand, your brand name should be the domain name.
How to Register your domain nameOur rule of thumb is your domain registra should not be the one who hosts your blog. There are many popular domain name registras but I personally preffer either namecheap.com or godaddy.com. We are not going into details on how to register a domain name on these two companies but just click the links above and the first thing is to search for your desired name. If it is available, go ahead and register it. If you need a step by step guide on how to register a domain name WordPress the best blogging software in the world, yes you may have read about that somewhere else and not necessarily on Nabaleka. Did you know that many Websites and Blogs doing well around the world are Powered by WordPress? Well, today I am writing a post about starting a blog on WordPress.
Starting a Blog On WordPressTo create a Blog on WordPress, you have to forget about wordpress.com and think of having your own hosted account as explained in the points below.
1. Getting a Domain and Hosting Plan:
The first step, to setting up your blog, is getting a domain, this is the address to your blog, for newbies this is what people will type in their browsers to visit your blog. We need to find a good registrar online because we have to buy one. I recommend Namecheap as the name suggests it is cheap and the best registrar in the world plus they will offer Whois Guard free to protect your identity online. Head over to namecheap.com create an account and buy one. For Hosting, I recommend you have your blog hosted on Hostgator. Navigate to hostgator.com using your browser and click on the View Web Hosting Plans. There are three plans listed if you only want to host one domain choose the Hatching Plan. But if you may at a time want to add more domains to your hosting plan I recommend you chose the Baby Plan. The other plan is too much for a single blogger and may need something like a big company. After selecting the best for you, click on the Order Now button, Next choose the ‘I already own this domain’ and insert in the box below the domain you purchased from NameCheap. Fill in the rest of the details since you will be creating an account with them. When it comes to Have a coupon? Delete the one provided and Use The Coupon Code getKenyansonline and click on Validate. This will allow you to receive 99.9 % off the first month. NB: Please confirm you have filled all the information correctly before proceeding to the next step since you will be going to make a transaction online it is recommended to have everything set correctly. After you have verified click Create Account. You will receive an email if everything is set right confirming your new account. You now have to set up DNS settings for your domain to make it go live online. We will do this in the next step.
2. Installing WordPress and ThemeTo change your DNS records so that your domain be linked to your hosting go to NameCheap where you bought your domain and login. Click on you domain and select the Transfer DNS. Replace the ones that are there with the ones you get from Hostgator and save. It will take a maximum of 24 hrs for the nameserver change to be effected successfully. Installing WordPress is straightforward if you experience any problems feel free to contact Hostgator or contact me and I will do the installation for you free of charge.Here are the steps:1. Login to your Hostgator cPanel. The link to your cPanel should be in your Hostgator welcome message.2. Get down to software applications and click on the Quick Install icon. When the windows opens just under Blogging software select WordPress.3. Fill out the Application URL if you need to ( Note: This is the path where you want to install WordPress. If you leave this field blank, WordPress will be installed to your main domain. If you use blog in this field, WordPress will be installed to http://yourdomain.com/blog. Don’t leave this blank if you don’t want WordPress to be your main website or if you already have content on the root of your account.) 4. Click Install and you should see a congratulatory message like below. Click that link, and it will bring you to your newly installed WordPress blog! 5. Your admin password will be emailed to you to the email address you provided. Retrieve your password and then visit the URL to which you installed WordPress, adding/wp-admin e.g urbankenyanskenyan.com/wp-admin.
Theme CustomizationAfter creating a hosting account, you have the choice of using the available free themes on WordPress. A good theme gives you the look and feels you want for your blog, allowing you to design your blog exactly how you want it to look. If you’re not a coder (we certainly weren’t), then a theme makes the design work a million times easier. Plus, once you buy a theme, which are inexpensive for the time they save you, you own it for life. A theme has two halves: the framework (the bones) and the Child Theme (the beauty):
A WordPress Theme FrameworkThere are several WordPress theme frameworks on the market, but Genesis is without a doubt the best and most flexible choice. Genesis is the first half of your theme. Many themes merely handle the esthetics of your new blog, but Genesis provides a necessary foundation for your Child Theme. Simply go to StudioPress and buy the Genesis Framework. Alternatively you may also choose to check out Thesis Theme Framework.
WordPress Child ThemeAfter you get your Genesis Framework or Thesis Framework, you’ll want to find that right Child Theme (which is just a silly way to say “blog design”). You can search for the framework of your choice for available themes and choose on that is Responsive and SEO optimized for your blog.
3. WordPress Settings and PluginsOnce you have your blog live and have installed a domain, it is now time to configure some settings, these will prepare your blog for the content. You may want to play around customizing your theme for it to have the look that you want.
WordPress Plugins.WordPress uses plugins to do a lot of tasks for us. To add a plugin, all you need to do is to login to your WordPress Dashboard (which is what you’ll be using to add all your content) through yourwebsitename.com/wp-admin. Here you can either search for a plugin or upload one from your computer.Install the following that I recommend:
- Google Analytics for WordPress by Joost de Valk – For Adding Google Analytics to your blog
- WordPress SEO by Joost de Valk – To make sure your blog is visible to search engines
- GetSocial – Social networking buttons
- WP MashSocial Widget – For adding a Mashable style widget on your sidebar where people can like your Facebook Page, recommend on Google+, follow you on Twitter etc.