Starting a Blog is a dream for many people out there, which they hardly get time to do. But, blogging is a very relaxing and satisfying job which you should take up, even if as a hobby! It lets you put your ideas or thoughts into the public, or even your knowledge, which is shared by you through what people call “Tutorials”, just like the one I’m writing right now! Today, I’ll show you step-by-step on How to Start a Blog with WordPress and Make Money From It.
When you think of Blogs, the first thing that comes to your mind is WordPress. WordPress is a very obvious platform that people would choose for blogging. Other options include Blogger.com by Google, which is good, but limited in features. So, let’s start with how to build a blog with WordPress.
Note: If you’re migrating from Blogger to WordPress, refer to this Tutorial to migrate safely from Blogspot to WordPress without losing your Data or Search Rankings.
1. Buy a Domain
This is the most obvious step you’d want to do when starting a blog. Remember, you’re starting a blog, a brand that represents your ideas. So, don’t you think it should look like yourblog.com instead of yourblog.subdomain.com which is a bit awkward because the first one represents you, your blog, and your ideas. So, having a domain name for yourself is the first step to make rather than depending on other subdomains like yourblog.wix.com, yourblog.wordpress.com or yourblog.blogger.com.
Head over to a trusted domain registrar and get yourself a domain name. I’d suggest you to purchase a Top-Level Domain name. Read here about What is a Top-Level Domain. These domains are usually widely accepted and easier for search engines to index your website into search results, which in turn directs visitors to your blog. We can say that choosing a top-level domain has an indirect effect on your website rankings.
Now, you have a domain name, access to it, and it’s DNS (Domain Name System) settings. Let’s head over to Step 2.
2. Get an SSL Certificate
This usually isn’t a different step, but I had to include it under a different step because of its vitality. It is an integral part of your website when it comes to being browsed by your audience. Your audience doesn’t know you initially, and you have to build trust within them, through your blogs. But, what many initial bloggers miss out is an SSL Certificate. Now, look at the top of the window, beside the URL of my website. It will show you a padlock as shown in the screenshot below.
See there’s a Padlock beside the URL of my website because I have a SSL Certificate enabled. Now tell me, which of the below websites would you visit if you were given a choice?
Without any doubt, you’ll want to visit the secure website because you won’t trust the publisher of that unsecure website! Similar things will happen with your users, they would navigate away from your blog and Google won’t index your website into their Search Results. So, getting an SSL Certificate is a must.
3. Purchase a Hosting
Have you ever wondered, where websites are stored? They must’ve been stored somewhere because of which you’re able to access them, right? In Simple words, Hosting is the Storage Place for your Website. After you build your website, your website will be stored in a place, referred to as a Hosting. Now, there are various Free Hosting Providers one of which is even owned by Google, Blogger.com, also sometimes referred to as Blogspot. But, as I mentioned previously too, you won’t enjoy using it due to its limitations. So, for WordPress, you need a so-called “Formal” Hosting. Where do you get these Hostings from?
Head over to any Trusted Hosting Providers and check out their plans. Hosting can be very affordable especially on Blogging niches. You just need to find a trustworthy Hosting Provider to kickstart your Blog. Hosting is a very important part of your Blogging Journey as it is the main space where your website will be stored and will be accessible to the people. So, it needs to be safe.
4. Point your Domain to your Hosting Provider
If you’ve not purchased the hosting and domain from the same provider, you’d have to point your domain to your hosting provider. This process is very easy, so, you can opt for purchasing a domain and hosting from two different companies.
Simply, head over to your Hosting Provider and check what are your Nameservers you have to point your domain to. After that head over to your domain registrar and choose “Custom Nameservers”. Here, enter the Nameserver values your Hosting Provider gave you. It will usually be something like ns1.yourhosting.com, ns2.yourhosting.com or so on.
After that, it’ll take some time for the DNS settings to update. As per my experience, it takes up to 30 minutes to 1 hour. However, in some rare cases, it may take up to 24 hours to 48 hours.
5. Time to Install WordPress!
Now, Install WordPress on your Hosting. This can be done either by downloading WordPress from WordPress.org or Simply using your Hosting Provider’s in-built App Download System to download WordPress. Most renowned Hosting Providers have an option to Install WordPress on your hosting, so it should be an easy process.
Once you’ve installed WordPress on your site, you should be able to access the WordPress Admin Dashboard, usually using the link yourdomain.com/wp-admin. You’ll be prompted to create a username and password while installing WordPress on your hosting, you’ll now use this password to log in to the Admin Dashboard in yourdomain.com/wp-admin.
6. Add a Theme to your Blog
Yes, now is an exciting time! You’ve to design your Blog, the best you can. The Theme or Design of your Blog might not affect search rankings directly, but it has a terrific effect indirectly. Google sees what is called a ‘Bounce Rate‘. Bounce Rate is the percentage of people who ‘Bounced Off‘ or Navigated away from your website, after viewing one page. This is a very important metric and you can keep the Bounce Rate low by having a good theme on your blog. But, remember not to make the theme very fancy, neither just simply paste the HTML without any designs. Keep a very smart, simple, look of your blog, which is attractive to users, at the same time being very easy to read. Don’t optimize your theme so much that users find it difficult to read. Then, they’ll bounce off more from your site.
7. Write a Test Blog Post (>150 words)
Before Publishing your Blog, or designing it, Publish a Sample Test Post. This helps to determine how your Blog will look when it’s published. Remember, check the option “Discourage Search Engines to Index your Website”. This helps to prevent Search Engines Like Google to Index your Unfinished page. This becomes a bad impression. Search Engines like Google start indexing your Page almost immediately after it is available to them. So make sure to check that option.
8. Make Money from Your Blog
Now, when you’ve worked so hard, you might want to set up your Blog to earn money while you’re working hard behind it. There are a ton of ways to Monetize your Blog. One of which we’ll discuss today, which is the most common one that almost every Blogger uses. Look to the top of this Page, or on the Sidebar, or on the Footer, or in between Posts, What Do You See? Ads? Yes! More Specifically, Google AdSense Advertisement Units. These are provided by Google to be used on your Google Approved Website. It is a very simple process but you must do it after you have some content set up on your website. This applies to your Blog. After you’ve written some Blog Posts, and are getting some traffic, you can apply for Google AdSense here. Just sign up with your Google Account and provide them with your Website Domain Name. They’ll give you an HTML Code to verify that you Own the Website which you just submitted to them. After this, the Google AdSense Approval Process will begin. This usually takes a few days, but it can take some more time too in rare cases.
You can also have a Look at Some of the Best Alternatives to Google AdSense here.
Thanks for reading this tutorial, or we can call it an article. Let me know in the Comments Section below about your thoughts on this. I’d love to read them! Check out some other cool tutorials on my website here, I’m sure you’ll like them!