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Single Girl’s Essential Guide To Blogging
In Feb 2018, I started this blog on Blogger. For any new blogger who’s not sure where to start, Blogger is a great unassuming, easy-to-use starting place. Lots of bloggers used to start there in the late 1990s and 2000s. I had three or four blogs on Blogger in my twenties. Now a days, most bloggers start right away on a self-hosted blog because it’s more accessible to users of all skill level, like me and you! I’ve broken it down for you into three bite-sized chunks. It is my belief that you can accomplish anything in bite-sized chunks.
THE REALLY EASY PART: NAME, HOST, BLOG!
1. Pick a name for your blog.
Single Girl Kernel of Truth: Pick a name that can grow with you. Names for some of my other blogs were: Kissed by 27, The Skinny Pharmacist vs The World, Camels Don’t Moo. They tended to be seasonal so when I started this blog, I wanted something that would grow with me. I think the Journey part of my blog’s name reflects that.
2. Pick a host.
Single Girl recommends Bluehost. Here’s why.
Bluehost has a more attractive user area but I had slow load times. They tend to be cheaper if you sign up for 3 years. (Insider tip – if you pretend to close the window at Bluehost, you may get an even lower rate!) Tech support leaves a lot to be desired. Bluehost tended to recommend a higher hosting plan if you contacted them with a tech issue. They were easier to reach by chat, however, and I liked that.
Siteground’s user area can be quite intimidating but some polls say their site speeds are faster. They tend to be more affordable if you only plan on signing up for 1 year. If you did have a tech issue, Siteground was difficult to reach by chat. The phone agents are overseas and were sleepy and rushed you off the phone after one question. But if you need to access site files, the user area made that easier to find.
Single Girl Kernel of Truth: I’ve used both and they’re the best options for new bloggers. Neither are perfect, so pick the plan that matches where you want to be price-wise. The cheapest plan is usually sufficient for newbie bloggers. Click through my links to check for specials. While tech support on both sites was a little disappointing, I did myself a disservice by starting on Blogger first and trying to transfer sites after 100 posts. Don’t do that. Additionally, if you ever need help there are lots of tutorials for just about anything you might need. I would suggest you start there.
Pro tip: Go ahead and register your domain with the host you choose. It’s a lot easier! They do everything for you. Just click through one of my links – it’ll save you a lot of time and hassle!
3. Click once to install WordPress, customize, and begin blogging.
Here’s where you can have a little bit of fun picking different themes. Look at a few of your favorite bloggers and decide what elements of their site you like (e.g. sidebar or no sidebar, slider features, images or no images, simple text, color schemes, etc…).
THE BEST PART: CREATING CONTENT!
For the creatives out there, this really is the best part. This is what makes dealing with silly tech support and learning WordPress all worth it. This is what I love about blogging. I love sharing my story. I love offering a new perspective. I seriously love everything I write. The creation high is infectious and that’s what keeps all of us bloggers (and now you) coming back for more. It’s why after a few failed attempts, I still keep blogging.
Write about what you want. You can make this a personal journey of a goal you’re trying to reach (like my blog). You can write about a special area of interest. You can write about a niche that you hope to market and monetize. Blogging is a great hobby, side-hustle or full time job. You can make your blog whatever you want or let it grow into something organically. If you’re scared, do it scared! You have a voice, share it with the world. I believe in you!