If you start surfing Pinterest, there is no shortage of amazing resources and guides to help you get started. My first suggestion on starting your blog is to do as much brainstorming and research as possible. I googled/pinterest’d for over two months before I launched mine to make sure I was doing it efficiently and correctly.
Read Part 1 of Blogging Basics here: 5 Things To Do Before You Get Started
- Choose a Topic/Niche and Choose a Name: This is probably the hardest part of the whole journey! You want to choose something that represents you, brands you, and also is memorable! Think: easy to spell, the shorter the better, and something that makes you feel EXCITED! Mine is Grace + Ford: A Lifestyle Blog – you don’t need a tag line but Grace + Ford doesn’t really tell you what I’m about so I added the tag to set me apart. Make sense? Before you buy your domain name, make sure it’s available on social media and not already in use. That would be the worst!
- Brand Kits + Logos: This is totally up to you, but I purchased a branding kit off of Etsy from THIS shop. I wanted something that represented me and made me look professional. This kit included Logo variations in different formats, hex color codes that match (to use for the site), and watermarks. I’ve gotten so many compliments and I am so thankful I let a professional handle this part for me, haha! She has tons of other options and custom packages available, too! If you want to create your own, that’s cool too! There are lots of free sites (Canva is my fav) that are really user friendly in getting your own logo(s) set up. I worked on this first so that I could use them across my social media so they would be different but also match.
- WordPress.Org: You can get a free or upgraded site from Wordpress.COM but you do not own that site and if you plan to montenize, you’ll need a .ORG site for Adsense and Google Analytics. You want to self-host your site (so that you own ALL of the content) and do that through WordPress.ORG. There are tons of self-hosting sites and blog sites, but these are the two that I am using/familiar/happy with.WordPress.ORG and SiteGround Self HostingYou can register your domain name through WP/SG (so that it has .com after it instead of .wordpress.com) and SiteGround is SO helpful at setting it up for you. Their chat is top notch and will walk you through everything you need to know. *Just a disclaimer: You will need to invest a little in self-hosting/purchasing your domain name. If you are wanting to try it out/blog as a hobby then WordPress.COM has some great options/free blog themes.*
- Blog Theme: This is the most fun! You can browse through TONS of free themes and even buy custom ones from Etsy. This is YOUR site but you can always check out your favorite blog sites for inspiration. What do you like to see on a site and what catches your attentions? Think: Organized, Clutter Free, and easy to navigate. (Be sure to check it out on mobile, also!)
- Customization: This will involve a few hours (I took a few days!) to master. Find a color scheme that flows nicely with your logo/header and is easy on the eyes. You can add different sections and widgets to make it more you! WordPress and YouTube have tons of tutorials if you get stuck on something. You want it to be functional. This is another really fun part; watching your ideas come to life!
- Social Media: Before you launch your site, create your social media outlets for your blog. Instagram, Facebook Page/Group, Twitter and Pinterest are the ones I focus on. It gives your followers something to look forward to and helps you get to know them (and vice versa) a little better before you start sharing content. (Make sure your full name is visible especially on IG!)
- SM Handles: All of mine are @graceandfordblog with or without blog at the end. It’s easy to find me across all of the networks and immediately lets you know that I am a blogger. There are two ways to go about choosing your handle.
1. Your Blog Title
2. Your NameIf your blog title is your name then its a win win. “Jessica Conner Blog” / @jessicaconnerblogI have had more luck with the word “blog” being in my handle. It sets me apart of from other a “non blogger” accounts so that brands know immediately that I am a blogger and has done well for me in that aspect. I don’t think you can go wrong either way though!That is the “easy part” now comes the FUN! Writing!
Stay Tuned for more Blogger Info – Coming Soon!XO, Jess