Learning how to start a blog is much easier than you might think. The basics include building your blog using blogging software, signing up for hosting, posting to your blog often and promoting your blog. Here are the steps:
1. Get a Domain Name
It's important to get a domain name for your blog, especially if you're blogging for the purpose of online marketing for your business. This helps you to look credible and legitimate on the internet. It's also an extension of your brand. You can register your domain name for less than $15 per year. When you register, you can you choose a 1 to 10 year registration up front. Search engines like to see longer registrations and will award you with a higher rank for your blog if you register for 5 or more years.
2. Get a Twitter Account
After you've registered your domain name, open a Twitter account using that same name. Twitter is a social media site that allows users to have a conversation with one another using no more than 140 written characters. Bloggers can use Twitter to promote their latest posts by writing the title of their posts with a link back to their blog post. Twitter gives bloggers instant and faster traffic results than search engines because it takes time to get discovered in Yahoo! or Google.
3. Pay for Hosting
A blog that is used for business should have its own hosting. You want to stay away from free blogs that provide shared hosting such as WordPress (.com, not .org) because you'll always put your blog at risk of being suspended and wiped out. When you sign up to have a free blog, you agree to their terms and services, which includes the right for them to take down your blog for any reason they deem necessary. This includes objectionable content, and violating advertisement and selling rules. There are many low cost hosting solutions for your blog, such as Hostgator, that will allow you to host a blog for less than $5 a month.
4. Set up a WordPress Blog using Fantastico
There are several blogging softwares you can choose from, but the one most recommended by bloggers worldwide is WordPress. It's easy to set up and maintain. Hosting sites like Hostgator have a software called Fantastico that you can install with the click of a button or two. Once you've installed that, you can install WordPress with another click or two. Once that's complete, you can select a free WordPress Theme, which is a ready-to-go template for your blog. All you have to do is write the text. You can even customize many of the themes to your liking.
5. Write 10 Posts
Once your blog is set up, write 10 posts and publish them on your blog at the same time. This accomplishes two things. First, it will give your readers enough content to read if they discover your blog in the early stages. Second, it satisfies the search engines that are hungry for fresh content. Once you've written your initial 10, try to write at least two posts a day. You can prewrite and schedule several posts at once so that you don't have to worry about writing daily.
Now that you've written your posts, you're ready to go. The most common advice on how to start a blog is to submit it to blog directories, selected web rings and search engines. Do that and the steps discussed above, and your blog will be off to a great start.
Daphne Mallory, Esq. is the co-owner of Mallory Writing Services and has written more than 100 articles helping home based business owners and entrepreneurs start and market their business. You can learn more about her here.