Everyone should have a website. Period. If you’re ready to set up a blog, it will literally take you less than 15 minutes and I’m going to walk you through every step.
By the end of this post, you will not only own your own website, you will also have set up a blog ready to get your side hustle going!
Whether you’re a business owner, a side hustler, a blogger or someone who’s thinking of doing any of these things down the road, owning a website is essential.
In fact, I just purchased my daughter’s name as a domain name and she’s not even 2-years old yet.
Let’s get started!
Blogging Terminology: Let’s start off with the basics
To own a website and set up a blog, you’ll need three things:
1. Domain (the land for your home)
If you’ve asked the question “what is a domain”, think of it as the official address for your home (the foundation or land).
In more technical terms, a domain is the identifier that helps find a website. For example, if you look up at the URL bar, you’ll see that the domain for this site is hersidehustle.com.
2. Web Hosting (the structure or your actual house)
Now that you have the actual address of your website (the domain), web hosting is where all the data for your website will be stored. Think of it as the actual house that you’ll be building on the land.
This is basically where your blog lives.
3. WordPress.org (the furnishing)
Now you need to furnish your home… or a platform for your blog so you can start designing and writing.
WordPress.org is a free a publishing platform that makes it really easy for anyone to publish their blog online. It’s ideal for non-techies like us who can easily set up a blog or a website on WordPress.
How to Set Up a Blog – Step By Step Guide
Step 1 – Choose a domain name
You can easily overthink a domain name and get stuck there before you even set up a blog. Here are a few simple tips to help choose a domain name:
- Make it easy to type – Avoid numbers, dashes (-) and underscores (_).
- Keep it as short as possible – The shorter the less likely that people will make a mistake
- Go with a .com – Whenever possible, choose a domain name with a .com rather than any other extension (.net, .org, etc.). Some will tell you it doesn’t matter, but here’s why it still does.
- Plan ahead – Think about the purpose of your blog and choose a domain name that will make it easy to brand your blog.
- Use keywords – Not only does a keyword tell people what your blog is about, but it also helps with SEO.
Step 2 – Choose a web hosting provider
Consider the following when choosing a web hosting provider
- How much hand-holding will you need – Think about your needs. If you’re not technical and know that you’ll need some handholding, consider a hosting company that has solid support.
- Think about your blog’s growth – When you first set up a blog, it’s hard to think about how big it could possibly get, but you don’t want to end up choosing a company that won’t be able to accommodate the amount of traffic your blog will eventually get.
- Integrated with WordPress.org – If you’re a non-techie like me, I can’t stress how important it is to choose a hosting company that easily integrates with WordPress.org (which will be your platform). You can literally design a blog in a matter of clicks.
The very first hosting company I choose had no support, no web templates and charged me $24/month! I’ve purchased several domains since and used different hosting companies. A few offered some of the three things above.
Bluehost has been the only hosting provider that has offered me all three. Not to mention that it costs as little as $4/month.
Their technical support is awesome… they even got my site back up in a matter of minutes after I broke it a few years ago.
Step 3 – Set up a blog with Bluehost
When you go to the Bluehost website, you’ll see this page:
Choose the plan that’s best for you. If you’re just getting started with one domain, you can go with the basic plan.
Now choose your domain name. Since you’re looks for a new domain, you can type the domain name you have in mind in the ‘new domain’ section on the left. Bluehost will let you know if it’s available or not.
You will then be to create a new account and enter your payment info. Once your payment is complete, you’ll be asked to create a password.
Create a password
You will then see this message:
Step 4 – Install WordPress site with Bluehost
You’ve got the land and your house all set up. Now you need the furnishing.
Remember that your WordPress.org platform is the furnishing when you set up a blog. You should automatically be logged into your account, but if you haven’t, you can access it by going to My Bluehost
Here’s the benefit of Bluehost – WordPress is automatically installed for you.
You will then be asked to choose a theme and be given the options below. You can always change the themes afterwards.
You will then see this message once you choose a template:
Once you click “Start Building” you will be taken to your new WordPress dashboard (something that will soon become like home to you). You can choose whether this is business or personal.
Click on the “Launch Site” button and enter your Site Title and Description.
Congratulations! You have just set up a blog!!
The possibilities are endless. Here’s to the beginning of your side hustle… hustle hard!
Before you even start writing your first blog post, read this about the 7 Blogging Mistakes Most Newbie Bloggers Make. I made every single one of these and I honestly believe it set me back years.