There is no denying that I have not blogged as much as I originally planned when I started my paternity leave, but that is only because I am out having too much fun with my daughter. I originally set this site up thinking that I might record a few stories each week; I thought this would be a great way to share how things are going with my family and friends, and even with Ashleigh one day. But quite honestly, we have been so busy that I am luck to post once every couple of weeks! Never-the-less, it can seem like a daunting task to get your own blog set up, but it is honestly really easy.
Blogging is an excellent way to share your own stores, establish yourself as an expert parent (or anything else) and to network with other like-minded individuals. Whether you are looking to start an online empire, or maybe just share a few anecdotes of your own, the set-up process is easier, and likely cheaper, than you think.
Starting out, I recommend using WordPress. You can see that my site isn’t very fancy, and other than my logo, I have done everything on my own with free templates. In fact, I think the total I have spent on a year of webhosting as well as a domain name was less than $100. Besides free templates, WordPress has tons of free plugins for just about anything, including social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram.
To get started, the first thing you need to do is get a host for your site. I am currently using Bluehost which offers easy set-up and installation of WordPress. The normal cost for Bluehost is $7.99/month but if you sign up by clicking here you will pay just $3.95/month. In addition to hosting your site, you can get your domain name for free when you sign up with Bluehost.
Get started with these simple steps:
Step #1: Sign up for Webhosting and decide on a domain name
- Click here to sign up for Bluehost web hosting and select a domain name
- Starting a new blog doesn’t require anything more than the basic plan. You can always upgrade your plan as your traffic increases
- If you already have a domain name, you will be able to link it with whichever company you purchased it from (i.e. godaddy) see step #3 for more details on this
- Make sure to uncheck SiteLock Domain Security, Site Backup Pro, etc. I have set up a few websites before and I make the mistake of not unchecking these every time. Bluehost does have great customer service and is quick to process a refund if you forget to uncheck them, but it is still a hassle to deal with it if you forget.
Step #2: Install WordPress on your new site
As I mentioned above, I use WordPress and so do thousands of others out there. The best part about it is that they have free templates to choose from. You can always chose a premium template, but there is no reason not to check out some of the free ones first!
- There should be a prompt to install WordPress when you log into Bluehost for the first time, but if there isn’t, go to the “One-Click Installs” under the “Website” control panel.
- Select “WordPress” and then click on the “Install” button
- You will need to enter your domain name and then your username and password
Step #3 Point your domain to this website Note – this is only necessary if you are one of those that already had your domain name purchased somewhere else (i.e. godaddy)
Below is how to change your site if you purchased through godaddy like I did.
- Log into your godaddy account and select the domain you want to manage. On the settings tab, go down to “Nameservers” and click on “Manage”:
Next, you will want to point the Nameservers to the Bluehost servers. To do so, change to custom:
After you have changed to custom, click on “Enter custom nameservers”:
Then, a box will pop up to enter the Bluehost Nameservers:
Make sure to enter both exactly as shown on the Bluehost website:
Once entered, click “OK” and within a few minutes it should look like this:
You are now ready to go back to your website and start setting up your blog!