How to Create a Blog!

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Today I want to talk all about how you can create your own WordPress blog and why I recommend hosting your site on Bluehost.  Click here to create your WordPress blog now!  It takes less than 20 Min!

Why Start A Blog?

I get it, blogging can seem a little daunting.  My entire professional career has been spent in the corporate world.  Blogging is a completely different profession.  What I love about blogging is that you can create content and blog from anywhere in the world!  It’s also an amazing way to earn residual income on a monthly basis.  To me, blogging gives me freedom, which is something I really value.  Here are some other general reasons I love blogging:

  • You can tell your story!
  • More financial freedom by monetizing your blog
  • Be you’re your own boss!
  • Meet/collaborate with some amazing people and companies
  • Working on something you’re passionate about

And the list goes on!  If you’ve been thinking of starting a blog, NO MORE EXCUSES.  Today is the day!  Once you start, you will be kicking yourself that you didn’t start earlier.

Blogging Niches that Perform Well

When starting a blog there are so many things you can write about.  I find it easier to pick one niche so you’re content is more focused.  Here are some blogging niches that perform well:

  • How to Make Money
  • Personal Finance
  • Fashion/Beauty
  • Lifestyle
  • Health/Fitness
  • Food
  • Mom Blogs

These are just a few example, there are SO many niches out there to choose from!

Web Hosting

What is web hosting?  

A Web Host is a service that enables your website/web page to be visible on the internet.  If you want your website to run smoothly and grow you need web hosting, there is no other option.  Thankfully web hosting is very inexpensive!  Click here to start your hosted blog for as little as $3.95 a month on Blue Host!

A Web Host provides services that enable your website to run.  It is where all of your website’s information is held and stored.    They are essentially selling you server space.  When you create a website, all of your pages, graphics etc. need to saved and stored, so that when someone visits your site, it can easily be pulled up and displayed.

Can I Web Host Myself?

You can host a small website through your own PC if that site is only getting a couple of visitors, however, if you are trying to create a blog that reaches a larger audience (more than a couple of people), your home computer/internet connection cannot support your site.  Since web hosting is so easy and cheap to use it is the only way to go.  Blue Host also provides you with a FREE Domain name when you host with them which is an added bonus!

Blue Host 

I use Blue Host to host both Prada & Pearls and Balancing That Budget on WordPress.  Blue Host is one of the top-rated website hosting companies in 2018.  You can start your own blog with them for only $3.95 a month ( that’s only $47.50 a year!).  I have since made all of that money back and more through my hosted blog so the initial investment is worth it!

Now some of you may have heard of Blogger or Blogspot.  DO NOT USE THESE.  If you have the intention of using your blog for business purposes, adding affiliate links throughout your website (a great way to earn money) or advertising, use WordPress hosted on Blue Host.  It is VERY difficult to make money on a blog hosting on Blogger, Blogspot or other companies that allow you to create a free blog.  Reason being, many affiliate networks, and advertising agencies don’t work with blogs on these platforms.   They view these platforms as unprofessional.  Save yourself the headache down the road and create a blog with WordPress using Blue Host.

Pros of using Bluehost:

  • You get your domain name FREE
  • It is VERY affordable at only $3.95 per month
  • They have 24/h technical support (I have used this many times and they’re great!)
  • You can use WordPress for FREE
  • Your website runs smoothly
  • You can monetize your blog easily
  • Your website appears professional

4 Easy Steps to creating your blog on Bluehost

Step 1:  Purchase Hosting

Click here to get started, and then follow the directions below!

First, Click on “Get Started Now”

Next Select your plan

The basic option for $3.95 is more than enough!  This rate is locked in when you sign up for 36 months of hosting, which is what I recommend, it’s the best value for your money!     There is also an option to purchase 24 months for $4.95 and 12 months for $5.95.  All options are quite affordable, however, 36 months is the best deal.   

Step 2: Domain Name

Next it’s time to set up your domain name.  You have the option to either create one for FREE or you can use an already existing one that you have purchased elsewhere (like on GO DADDY for example).  Again creating your blog through my link lets you create a domain name for FREE!  

Your domain name is your website’s address. 

For example: www.balancingthatbudget.com.  

You must pick a domain name that doesn’t currently exist.  This can be the hardest part.  I recommend coming up with a couple of options first and then checking to see if they’re available.  You want your domain name to match your blog name to make it easier for readers to find!  

Step 3: Finalize your Purchase!

Before hitting submit make sure your account plan is correct, again I truly believe that the best value is the 3.95 option for 36 months!  I would highly encourage you to at least sign up for a year, that way you don’t have to renew month over month (which is a pain!) 

NOTE: If you have purchased a domain name from a different company you now have to link it to the Blue Host server.  Please contact the company you purchased your domain from for step by step instructions

Step 4: Apply WordPress!

Again, I highly recommend using WordPress to create your blog!  First off Bluehost provides it for FREE!  It also makes designing your website painless and helps it look super professional!

Bluehost will prompt you to create a password, then you will receive set-up instructions from Bluehost.  THAT’S IT! YOU NOW HAVE A BLOG!!

Choosing a WordPress Theme!

A large decision you will have to make is what theme to choose for your blog!  A theme is a set of templates and style sheets that define the appearance of your blog!  If your blog is your house, think of your theme as all the furniture and paint.  Your theme is what makes your blog visually appealing!  

There are SO many themes you can purchase for your blog.  WordPress provides some free ones you can use at the beginning that can be changed later on.  I personally use the Genesis Framework from  Studio Press for Balancing that Budget and  Restored 316 for Prada & Pearls (also supported on Genesis)!  I highly recommend the Genesis Framework (by Studio Press), so many blogs use this framework because it’s easy to design and looks VERY professional!

I’ve summarized some popular websites that sell themes below, searching the internet for themes can be daunting so here are some of my favorites:

  1. Studio Press: Studio press is what I use for Balancing that Budget.  There are SO many bloggers that use studio press due to their Genesis framework that sits behind all of their themes.  Their genesis framework holds the framework design, security and SEO foundation for your website.  You then apply one of the Studio Press child themes on top to give your website design flare.   I HIGHLY recommend Studio Press, it’s really easy to use and they have SO many themes to choose from!      ****** NOTE many independent websites that sell themes use the Genesis framework to support their designs, always check this before purchasing a theme******
  2. Restored 316: I use Restored 316 for Prada & Pearls.  All of their themes sit on the Genesis framework as well so that must be purchased from Studio Press before purchasing any of their themes.  I absolutely love the feminine Restored 316 themes, they are all just GORGEOUS!
  3. Pretty Darn Cute: This website sells a wide variety of feminine word press themes.  They are also supported by the Genesis Framework
  4. ThemeIsle Themes: ThemeIsle is similar to Studiopress in that it has SO many themese to choose from that cover all sorts of blog niches.  ThemeIsle theme’s do not site on the Genesis framework, therefore you do not have to purchase that in order to use these themes.

Final Words

Next, it’s up to you!  You now have a blog and you can start to create content!  Remember not all blogs succeed, creating high-quality content on a consistent basis helps significantly!  Happy Blogging!

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Author

Jenna Morton CPA,CA

Jenna Morton is the founder of Balancing That Budget as well as a Chartered Accountant with 10 years of industry experience. To learn more visit the About Page!

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