If you’ve found yourself reading this tutorial, you’re probably super pumped to be starting your blog, but a little lost and overwhelmed at the technology to do so. You may have never thought that a blog would involve things like web hosts, DNS settings, different blogging platforms, social media platforms, etc. It’s true, there is a lot to learn for someone just starting out, but don’t get overwhelmed!! All anyone needs in order to set up a blog is a desire to learn and seek out answers.
That’s where I want to help!
I know that setting up a blog can be hard and confusing. I’ve made it my goal to make New Kid on The Blog THE go-to resource for those just starting out in the big, big world of blogging!
Getting started with blogging doesn’t have to be scary or overwhelming. I like to think of setting up a blog like cooking: it’s easy if you just follow a recipe!
Let’s start with one of the basics: web hosting.
What is a web host?
A web host can best be described as like your internet landlord. Anyone who owns a website essentially rents their own little space in the internet world from a web host.
Now, there are a lot of web hosts out there. Even I use more than one! It’s a good idea to shop around, read reviews, and make sure the web host offers what you’re looking for. My needs are different for my 2 websites, so I use two different web hosts. For New Kid on The Blog, I use Bluehost, for my other site, I use MediaTemple.
I believe that Bluehost is one of the best web hosts a person can use when they’re getting started. This is because of the two things that almost every new blogger has in common:
- A beginner knowledge-base (we all gotta start somewhere!), and
- A budget
Bluehost answers both of those dilemmas with extremely affordable web hosting AND 24/7 customer support that specializes in WordPress. More than once, I was able to give a Bluehost support tech access to my wordpress dashboard because 1). I had no idea what I was doing at the time, and 2). I trusted them to fix the problem.
And they did!
So, like I said, be sure to shop around a look for a web hosting company that fits your needs and your budget. I personally recommend and use Bluehost, which is why I created this tutorial for how to get your WordPress website set up through Bluehost!
How to Install WordPress through Bluehost
Start here. Choose the plan you’d like (Bluehost has several affordable options), and go through the steps to register your account.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be brought to your control panel which will look like this:
Click “install WordPress”
Then you’ll be brought to this page:
You guessed it! Click “Get Started”
Now, select your domain from the drop-down list.
When this message shows up, click next.
Type your site’s NAME (not the url- aka leave out the http://www.), the username you’d like to use when you login to WordPress, and the password you’d like to use. Then, agree to the terms and click “install.”
You’ve installed WordPress! WOOHOO!
Logging in to WordPress
In your browser, type your url with the entension “/wp-admin”
For example: “mywebsite.com/wp-admin”
Use the username and password you set up in the previous step to login.
Note: before you pick a theme and launch your site, people will see this page if/when they search your URL.
Don’t be worried about launching your website right away. Chances are it won’t get many hits at all until you begin promoting your content, so not many people will even get the chance to stumble upon this page.
Another note: It might take a little bit of time (a few minutes to a day) for you to be able to actually login to your WordPress dashboard. The reason for this is because changes made to your URL take time to “propagate” throughout the internet world. Basically, you’re just waiting for the entire internet to catch up with the changes you’ve made. It’s totally normal and happens to everyone. If you feel like you’ve been waiting for a long time, though, feel free to contact someone at Bluehost to make sure everything’s ok.
Welcome to your WP Dashboard!
Lastly, you can get started installing your theme and customizing the look of your site!
Themes can be found in so many places! I’ve bought the themes I use for both my websites from White Oak Creative. Lindsay’s themes are beautiful and she was extremely helpful when setting them up. Etsy also has great themes but really be sure read the reviews and descriptions before you purchase anything. Do not purchase any theme that isn’t “responsive” (meaning it fits to any screen size). In this day and age, everything needs to be responsive. Period. About 60-75% of my traffic view the site on their mobile devices or tablets. Most people live their lives on-the-go, so your website will need to be ready for that, too.