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I always get the strangest looks when I tell people what I do for a living.
“Oh, I work from home as a blogger. I run a website sharing kids’ activities, recipes, and parenting articles.”
Whether the cashier at the grocery store scanning my order or the new mom at the playground. Their eyes meet mine, brow furrowed and head tilted.
“And you really make money at that?”
I will admit… the conversation does get a little old. But I won’t complain as I’m so thankful to have the job that I do.
“YEP! I make money blogging. A full-time income, actually.”
The next question I often get is…
Well, that’s a longer conversation than the checkout line or playground play date allows. So, I thought I’d share about how I blog and make money blogging, so you can learn more about how this crazy amazing blogging business works – and how to do it yourself, too!
First, of course, you need to set up a blog. Let me make it super simple for you by taking you step-by-step through the process.
STEP 1: Set Up Your Domain & Hosting
The first step to starting your own blog is to choose your domain name. A domain name is a fancy way of saying your web address. You may need to do some brainstorming and research to pick a domain name that is perfect for you and your business.
After you’ve chosen what your domain will be, it’s time to pick who will host your website. I personally started with bluehost for my domain + hosting. They’re really affordable and make setup easy peasy for new bloggers.
This will take you to a page where you will choose your plan. If you are just starting out, I recommend the BASIC PLAN. You can upgrade later as you build up your blog and traffic.
On the next screen, you will choose your domain name. Your domain name should be something specific to your blog topic and easy for future readers to remember and type into searches. If your preferred domain name isn’t available, keep trying other ideas or choose from bluehost‘s suggested options.
Now, just enter your account and payment information. And after everything is confirmed, choose your password. (Be sure you confirm your email address, too!)
STEP 2: Install WordPress
After you’ve chosen your password, you can log into your cPanel. Your cPanel (“control panel”) is the backend of your website and is where you will complete all your admin tasks. It seems scary, but don’t worry. (If all else fails, check out the awesome support section on bluehost or ask bluehost support for help.)
Once you’re logged in, bluehost will give you the option of doing the WordPress install yourself or having them do it. Choose “i can do it.” You’ve come this far. You got this!
In your cPanel, click on the WordPress icon under Website Builders.
Then, just click “Start” to begin the installation.
Once installation had begun, you will be prompted to select your domain to install on and enter your preferred login credentials and email address.
Click install now and wait for it to complete. Easy peasy. You now have your blog setup!
STEP 3: Choose a Design
Now comes the fun stuff! At least, I think so. Now, you get to log into WordPress and start making your blog your own! You do this with a blog theme.
In order to log into WordPress, you will visit yourwebsite.com/wp-admin (but replace “yourwebsite.com” with your actual domain name you set up through bluehost).
It will prompt you to log in. Do so with the username and password you chose during WordPress installation.
Now, you’re in your WordPress dashboard. Here’s what it looks like…
I highly recommend the Genesis Framework for your blog theme. It’s very popular among bloggers as being secure, fast, and having lots of options for customization. You can see all Genesis Framework Themes HERE.
I recently purchased and installed the Genesis Framework and Brunch Pro Child Theme through my friend, Stephanie, of Good Blog Groupie. And she installed them for me, too. She was affordable and really great to work with.
If you want to install your own theme, you’ll need to navigate to “Appearance” on the left-hand side of your WordPress dashboard, then click on “Themes” to upload the theme file.
STEP 4: Start Blogging!
I taught myself how to blog day after day, month after month, year after year. Through trial and error, reading blogs about blogging, and lots and lots of Google searches. And I’m still learning new things everyday. But, I highly recommend you save yourself lots of time – and start building traffic, growing an email list, and making money much sooner – by using this…
Blog by Number. It’s brilliant! You can take the awesomely detailed course – full of videos, resources, worksheets, and more. Or just opt for the eBook. Either way, work through it at your own pace, and you’ll have an amazing blog in no time!
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