I was talking with one of my best friends the other day and she told me she wanted to start her own blog. She loves to write and she does it quite often but she really wanted to start publishing her toughts.
I told her the best she could do was to open a blog at WordPress, buy a domain and start publishing.
But here’s the thing. I could do that in 3 steps because I know how it works already. I’ve been here for 7 years!
Later, I found out it was the worst day of her life in front of a computer. She was lost, she didn’t know what to do first, she didn’t know where or what to click and her back hurt. I felt so bad because I might be privating the world of her thoughs.
She had the worst experience starting her own blog that she might not blog again, ever!
This is why I think is a good idea to publish the ultimate checklist to start your own blog. So you know exactly what you need to do the first day you want to publish a post. Once you check everything on the list, you’ll have to worry only for publishing your posts, only for the writing part, our favorite part.
I think this checklist will help you to save a lot of time setting up your first blog.
If you’ve been thinking about what to write or the main topics you’re gonna share, it will be the easiest thing.
If you just happen to want a blog, you’re gonna start the right way because in this list are things you haven’t consider before and need to be done before you start getting readers.
I’m gonna make this list taking WordPress as example because that’s my favorite platform but you can apply the majority of items on this list to any platform of your convenience.
I recommend you to follow this list from the beggining to the end before publishing your first post. If you have a blog and want to audit it, you may also follow the checklist. About the time, it doesn’t matter if you do one item today and the next one tomorrow or the entire list in an hour, what does really matter is that you have it done soon. 🙂
For me, this list is fundamental, is like building a house. You start with the bases and structure and then, you start building. Well, the bases are your ideas and your desire to post, the structure is this list and then, you start building with your writing.
If you want to start your blog or audit yours, this could be the ultimate checklist you need.
If you want to publish your ideas and have no idea about code and hosting and all of that, this might be the list you were waiting for.
The ultimate checklist to start your own blog.
- Create a free account on WordPress.com or the platform of your choice. There’s Tumblr, Squarespace, LiveJournal, etc.
- Go to your profile settings (in WordPress is a little circle on the top right of your screen, between a pencil and a bell). In your personal profile settings, upload a photo and write your first name, last name, public display name and save profile details.
- Go to security settings and activate the two-step verification.
- If you created your blog on the first step, good. If not, create your blog now. Basically, your choosing for a url right now, this url might look something like this: myblog.myplatform.com when you have your blog, go to the settings of your blog.
- Write the site title and the site tagline. Don’t waste too much time on this, you can always change this in the future but don’t leave it empty! (If you have no idea what to write here, write your name or your business name in the site title and your motto or the 3 main topics you’ll write about in the site tagline).
- If you bought a domain for your blog in the first step, good. If you didn’t buy a domain in the first step, do it now. This is your url, this is where everyone will visit you.Yes, having a WordPress.com blog is professional but having a hello.wordpress.com url for your blog is not.If you think you’re going the long road with your blog and you don’t want to spend any other day figuring out how other platform works, buy your domain inside WordPress. You’re gonna find a link to do just that on the site address option at the settings of your blog (it’s only $18usd per year).
If you’re feeling adventurer about the platform, you can buy the domain outside WordPress and then map it to WordPress. When you want to go other place in the future, you just have to map your domain to the other place.
- Choose the language you’re gonna write in.
- In the site visibility settings, choose to allow search engines to index this site.
- In the related posts settings, choose to show related content after posts.
- In the sharing settings, go to the connections tab and connect your social media profiles where you want to share your future posts.
- In the sharing buttons, customize your buttons if you want, but whatever you do, don’t forget to add your twitter username in the box below the buttons. When somebody shares your post, you’ll get a reply from that somebody!
- If you choose a theme you really liked in the first step, good. If you want to see what’s out there, go to the theme settings. Choose a theme you like and if you’re gonna write once per week in the beginning, choose a simple theme first. In a month or two, you can comeback to change to a more complicated theme if you want, when you have 10+ posts.
- Now, that you chose your theme, customize it and make it yours. Play around with the options and take advantages of the live preview before you save the changes.
- In the Site Identity option, you can change the site title and tagline. Or you can choose to keep them but hide them.
- If you love your theme but dislike the fonts, change them. Choose a font that DOESN’T have “[Tk]” in the name and your font customization will be free.
- Customize your site even more with a header (again, take advantage of the live preview to test your images, headers or to decide you don’t want one).
- Check if you have the “Theme Options” to see special features of your theme. Play it around and see if you want to add them or prescind from them.
- Save all your work right now.
- Go to the Widgets tab (in the customizer) and choose your weapons. I highly recommend the follow blog widget and to add your favorite social media profile (I’ve added the instagram widget).
- Save again and your blog is SO ready to be fed with your posts! 😀
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