Starting WordPress Blog: How to Start Your First Self Hosted WordPress Blog from Scratch
With the blog post, I’m aiming at sharing the complete process of starting a Self Hosted WordPress Blog. Apart from starting a Self Hosted WordPress Blog, I’m sharing some thoughts on why you should go for Self Hosted Blogs when you can create free blogs on Blogger and WordPress kind of free blogging platforms.
Limitation of Blogging on Free Blogs
Here are Some Limitations you will face while going for free blogs hosted on Blogger.com or WordPress.com kind of free blogging websites:
- You will have very few options when it comes about using various Plugins, Themes and Templates.
- You will not be owner for the work you are doing on these free blogs and your blog host can delete your blog without any prior notice in case they feel your blog is against their policies. But you will have full control over your blog and cannot do lots of customization if you owned that blog and is using your own hosting.
- You cannot do anything at database level
- We cannot sell our blogs that are created on free blog hosing websites like Blogger and WordPress as they are the property of blog hosts and not yours.
- If you are blogging on free blogging engines, your blog readers will not take you much seriously. But if you are going for self hosted WordPress blog, that shows your professional approach towards your blog and know work.
- We cannot create authors, contributors, Admin etc with free blogs created on WordPress.com website. So we will miss the guest blogging kind of activities on our blog especially if we are going for WordPress based free hosting.
Starting a Self Hosted WordPress Blog
When it comes about self hosted WordPress blog, there are plugins available for almost everything and you will have lots of professional themes available for free that you can use on your custom domain. Apart from free plugins and themes, there are thousands of premium plugins and themes available that will help you make your blog more appealing, truly professional and one step ahead of rest of blogs that are using free resources for customizing their WordPress based blogs.
So to start your WordPress based self hosted blog, you need to sign up for a website hosting company that supports WordPress. So here is the complete step by step process that will help you start a WordPress Self Hosted Blog from Scratch.
Decide Your WordPress Blog Niche
First thing that you need to decide is the niche for your blog. You should go for a niche, you are really passionate about and can write and learn about. You should not choose a niche simply because your friend is working in the same niche or you are motivated by the earning of a marketing guru in that niche. Your passion for the niche you decide to choose should be really strong as that would help you produce lots of quality contents at regular intervals. Even thorough you may not be knowledgeable about a particular niche, but your interest and passion about that niche will help you gain expertise in that niche. So your blog can be about any niche. Take my example; I’m very passionate about blogging, seo, social media, affiliate marketing, web hosting and WordPress related topics. That’s why I’m able to produce quality posts around these niche topics at regular intervals here on Bloggers Passion.
Choosing Domain Name for Your Blog
Next step will be choosing a domain name for your blog. You should choose a domain name which reflects your blog niche, has the potential to be a brand name and interesting. You may find problems in getting in dream domain name for your WordPress blog as most of domain names you try are already owned by someone else. But still you need to make a good selection and give some time in choosing and buying a domain name for your blog. This is going to one time investment and it would not be possible for you to change your domain name later. So you should be very sure about the domain name you are going to use for your WordPress blog. You can use Google Adwords Keyword Tool or any other keyword tool to see the kind of terms people are actually using to find information of their interest. Keywords list that you get from a keyword tool will give you lots of domain name ideas that you can go for. You can use Namecheap.com or any other website for registering your domain name.
Choose Best Web Host for Your WordPress Blog
Next task is choosing a Best WordPress Hosting company for your blog. We need to choose a web hosting company whom we can rely and have trust on. My favorite web hosting company that supports WordPress is Hostgator. I have been using their hosting for 4 years now and had so far no issues with them. Their technical support that they provide via Chat, Email and Phone makes them special among all hosting companies that support WordPress. We need to pay $83.40 for one year of shared hosting (Hatching Plan) from Hostgator and with a discount coupon bloggerspassion25; we are able to bring this yearly cost down to $62.55 (25% Saving). So we will be paying only $5 per month type for world class web hosting services from Hostgator. Hostgator provides a script named as Fantastico DELUXE that will install WordPress automatically with a single click only.
So you don’t need to manually upload WordPress files into your blog with Hostgator as that will be done automatically by this application which you can access from your Hostgator C-Panel. Currently all of my blogs are hosted on Hostgator. In the past one of my blog was hosted on an India based hosting company. I was not satisfied with their services and thus moved that blog as well to Hostgator hosting.
Install a Professional Theme in Your Blog
There are thousands of free themes available in WordPress Themes gallery that you can access from here. Apart from this, there are hundreds of websites that you can use to download free as well paid themes for your WordPress blog. Some of best websites for downloading premium themes for your WordPress blogs are Thesis Theme, Woo Themes and Elegant Themes. I’m using Thesis theme on Bloggers passion.
Install Plugins to Your WordPress Blog
Next thing that you need to do is start adding plugins to your WordPress blog to add various functionalities, features and to make it more search engine friendly. Some of plugins I would recommend installing are All in One Seo Plugin, Google XML Sitemaps, WP Super Cache, Akismet, Contact Form 7 and Yet Another Related Posts Plugin etc.
Change Your permanent URL Structure
Next thing, you could do is make your blog posts URL’s more search engine friendly. For doing this, you need to go to Permalinks option available under Setting from WordPress Dashb/strong> in Custom Structure box available. This will help you append your blog post URL’s just after your blog base URL.
Start Publishing Contents on Your WordPress Blog
Now you need to start publishing fresh and unique blog posts on your blog. You should aim at adding lots of quality posts at a fast pace on your blog. You should keep all your posts around your chosen niche only. You should look at publishing long and well researched posts on your blog. You should include images, videos etc in your blog posts to make them more appealing and search engine friendly. You should link out to your own blog posts and other bloggers to give additional information to your blog readers.
Promoting Your WordPress Blog
You need to promote your blog to generate lots of traffic from search engines. You should start doing guest blogging and blog commenting kind of activities. Apart from this, start sharing some of interesting stories from your blog on popular social media websites like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin etc.
Monetizing Your WordPress Blog
Once you start seeing some traffic coming on your blog, look at various ways to make money from your blog. Some of monetization methods you can apply on your blog are Google Adsense, Selling direct advertisements, selling ads via BSA kind of networks, Using Amazon or ClickBank kind of affiliate websites or selling our own products etc.
I hope I mentioned all steps that are required to make our First WordPress Blog a Success. Do you have something more to say which can help our self hosted WordPress blogs even more successful, please share in the comments section below?