How To Start Your Own Blog in 10 Minutes or Less
Starting a blog IS a great way to explore yourself, share your vision, + connect with your audience.
I'll show you how.
Hey, I'm Jordanna!
When I started The House of Muses back in 2014 as a creative lifestyle blog, I had no idea what amazing journey I was about to embark on. Starting a blog has helped me to better understand myself, to explore and share my ideas, and even to find success as a brand and web designer.
To get started with your very own blog, watch the super easy video tutorial, or simply follow along with the steps below. In 10 minutes, you'll be on your way!
Disclaimer: I recommend bluehost because they're great for beginners, and offer super-easy one-click wordpress set up. I get a small kick-back that supports this blog if you sign up through links on this page, at no extra cost to you.
Before we get started, be sure to have a credit card ready so you can purchase your hosting + domain!
LET'S DO THIS!
1. Pick a platform + HOST
The very first thing you need to decide before you start blogging is what platform you want to use. There are lots of them out there, but for building a successful blog, I recommend Wordpress (or Squarespace, but I'll cover that elsewhere because the set-up is very different) as a flexible, professional, and easy-to-use platform. The rest of this guide will assume you're using Wordpress to get set up.
Next you need to decide where you want to host your blog. Confused? Your host is sort of like a bank: your money lives in your bank, your blog lives at your host. Your platform is like your bank card. You access (read as: edit your blog) through your platform like you access your money with your card.
In this case, I recommend Bluehost. They're super affordable, offer 24/7 support, and are suitable for just about anyone starting out (unless you have some super-demanding business needs). You can get started for the price of a latte each month ($3.95) and get a free domain name.
2. SET UP YOUR BLUEHOST ACCOUNT
The first thing you want to do is head over to Bluehost and set up your account. Click 'get started now' and pick your plan; there are three options, but the basic option is suitable for almost anyone starting out with blogging.
If you already have a domain name, you can pop that in on the right. Otherwise you can pick your very own domain name (AKA: your url, your web address) over on the left. Get the .com if you can, but these days alternatives like .co, .net, and .club are becoming more common.
Finally, pop in your account information— your name, address, and billing info. There are options here to pick a bunch of extras, but when I started out, I was flying with just the basics. You can choose exactly what you need here for your best experience possible.
Be sure to check your email for the confirmation and further instructions!
3. INSTALL WORDPRESS
Take a deep breath— it's going to be easy, I promise. Head on over to Bluehost and log in in the top right-hand corner. Next click 'website' under the 'hosting' tab in the navigation menu at the top, then click 'install now' in the Wordpress box at the top.
In the top right hand corner of the white box, click the green 'install' button. You'll then see an option to check off which domain you are connecting Wordpress to. If you have more than one domain name, click the one you're using today, agree to the terms and conditions, and click 'install now'.
4. PICK A THEME
There are many different theme options with Wordpress, such as Genesis, Headway, Avada, etc, but today I'm going to show you how to pick a free theme (I recommend starting with a free theme, because you can commit to blogging and discover if you like it and want to stick with it before shelling out money for an expensive theme).
First, log in to your blog. You can log in by typing in your url, plus '/wp-admin'.
Next, go to 'Appearance > Themes' in the left hand menu, then click 'browse' just beside the 'Add Themes' page title.
Once you've found the theme for you, simply click to download the file, then upload and install your file.
5. GET STARTED
Well friend, that's really all there is to it. Now you're on your way!
Before you get started with writing your first post, there are a few things I recommend doing, including grabbing a few useful plugins (YOAST, Google Analytics, Mailchimp, and Jetpack), putting together an 'About' or 'Start Here' page, and customizing your theme. However, it's good to remember not to get too caught up in making everything look perfect right from the start. Much more powerful is a simple, clean layout, and a ton of really great content.
To write your first post, simple head over to 'Posts > Add Post' in the left-hand menu and start sharing your thoughts with the world!
So, what's next?
Check out some of my favourite blog posts, written to help you have the best blogging experience possible.
You can also grab my beginner's guide to starting a great blog
(which will pick up with developing blogging essentials where this guide leaves off) right here. This guide will help you develop the nitty gritty of your brand, content, and layout.