Anyone can blog. From traveling to food, fashion to sports, there has bound to be a blog of every kind of topic and interest out there in this world. For most people, it starts out as a passion. Today, their passions have turned to legitimate money-making businesses that earn them not just an influencer stardom status, but a six-figure earning empire within a year! Crazy, right?
Blogging is something I started as a creative outlet for me to work on while having a career in the marketing industry. Later on, it has now become a tool for me to reach out to the likes of you on tips, failed learnings, and simple joys I’ve gained while traveling. I can’t say I’m totally an expert on this, but I can say that the steps (and principles) I can show you are some of the few things I also learned from experts I look up to along the way.
I created this blog in the wee hours of 2 am on my bed, thinking that a business in traveling is something I would love to pursue, but never really knew the technical side of it. So, I read a step-by-step guide on how to create a blog in 20 minutes, and voila! AdvenShar.com was born. Yes, it’s that simple. Here’s how I did it:
Disclaimer: Some of these are affiliate links of products I love enough to recommend to you. They won’t charge you extra, but I can get a small compensation out of it to fund this blog. Thanks in advance!
Decide What to Blog
Of course, you can’t blog about things you have no firsthand experience. Otherwise, it’s just going to be a fictitious novel that might mislead a huge number of audience. For starters, don’t blog about things you’re not interested in too because it will definitely show in the way you write. Choose a niche that you would want to write about; something you love so it won’t feel much of an effort. At the same time, decide to blog that’s not always about you, but actually, write about helpful information to get people to read and share with their friends.
Yes, anyone can start a blog. But, it takes more than passion for preserving and succeeding–with anything in life for that matter. Before creating this blog, I did tons of research and reading on who’s who in the traveling industry. Admittedly, it scared me. How can you break out in this sea of millions of blogs already climbing up to fame? I’m not good enough, so why would people bother listening to me?
Despite all those fears, there comes comfort. As long as your heart’s in the right place, you can trust in God that He will lead you to the right direction. If your dreams don’t scare you, then they’re not big enough, right?
Pick a Name
After sorting out your heart, the first step finally begins. Picking a name alone was already a huge challenge for me. It’s frustrating yet it’s the most important step you’ll ever make in your life (next to saying yes to your man, of course). It’s something you would want to invest in the long run to establish loyal readers too. At the same time, it immediately sets the whole tone on what your blog is going to be about. Here are a few tips on how to pick the right name:
- Short, catchy, and unique – AdvenShar was coined from the words, ‘adventure’ and my name, ‘Shar.’ It’s unique enough that worked for me since it easily made a mark in people’s minds about the brand I was establishing. One helpful tip is also to decide a name that you’re proud to introduce to others in a business setting one day. You wouldn’t want to start a conversation with, “Hi I’m Shar, author, and founder of The Slutty Traveler,” now would you?
- Crowd-sourcing – Admittedly, my travel blog name came about when I posted a Facebook album of my India trip with a caption on asking people’s ideas for a witty hashtag for my travels. And, it worked! Two heads are indeed better than one.
- Check if it’s available – Of course, you can’t proceed with it if it’s already taken. So, better do some researching first!
Start a Blog with WordPress and Bluehost
Starting a blog has never been easier thanks to Bluehost. The web hosting giant comes in a package that gives you a free domain, free site builders, WordPress.org installation, and 24/7 support. But before that, just a little vocabulary lesson before we proceed:
- Web Domain – A web domain is a name you’ll choose to have for your site. For example, my domain is advenshar.com. A great analogy for this would be your home address. This is what people type in for them to locate you. One reason to register your own domain is that it makes your blog look professional.
- Web Host – A web host acts like a space you need to rent out in the internet in order for you to begin having your own blog or website. Going back to the analogy, this would be the lot you’re renting in. There are many web host servers out there, and one of them includes Bluehost.
- WordPress – WordPress represents the house where your site will be. There are two types:
- WordPress.com is a free platform that you don’t need to pay for hosting. However, you’re limited to themes, plug-ins, and monetization options.
- WordPress.org, on the other hand, will let you have all the freedom you need but isn’t free. That’s why Bluehost makes a great option to have WordPress installation as part of its package.
To sign-up for Bluehost, click here. Select ‘Get Started Now’ and choose which plan suits your blog.
Bluehost’s basic plan is enough for you to get when you’re just beginning to blog. There’s always an option to upgrade to the plus or prime later on.Fill out the necessary details, customize your package, and finally fill out your payment details.
Purchasing the 12-month plan is more cost effective than a per-month basis. The pricing is lower, you’ll get a free domain, and it saves you the hassle of manually renewing your blog before the month expires. If you’re hosting isn’t renewed, your blog will be down, and could potentially put your traffic at risk.
We’re almost there! Once you’ve settled your Bluehost plan, proceed to the dashboard and look for Cpanel. Here, you can click on ‘Install WordPress,’ and finally, choose the domain on which you want to install the WordPress on. Key in a username and password, and use these details to log-in at https://login.wordpress.org.
Customize Your Site with Themes
So now we’ve finally finished the technical side of blogging. It’s time for the fun part. Making your vision come to life! There are plenty of free themes to start, but I recommend investing in a premium theme at the beginning. As they say, you will never get a second chance to make a great first impression.
For my blog, I used a great theme from Station 7. They’ve got several professional looking themes and additional graphic resources for your need too. There are also demo pages where you can take the time to play around if that theme is really suited to your brand. With an easy installation guide and a fast-responding support team, Station 7 has truly met my needs in the professional blogging world.