How to set up your own domain, hosting and blogging platform
Learning how to create a blog from scratch is so much easier these
days than it was even a few years ago that I'm afraid this tutorial
might be a bit simplistic. I'll try and set you up with an
understanding of how blogs work including what makes them different
from traditional website formats, and then walk you through setting up
your own on your own domain with your own hosting.
Creating a Blog vs. a Website
Learning how to create a blog is
much simpler than learning to build a website. Why? because most of the
hard work has been done for you. Instead of coding each page
individually from the ground up, or designing each page based on a
template, you simply install blogging software onto your hosting
platform and then the rest is cosmetics. All you have to do is enter
the text from the back-end.
Blogs run on what is call a content
management system. Most blogs use Wordpress or Typepad or Blogger
although there are lots of different programs you can use. Think of
your content management system like the frame of your house. Most of
the time you don't see it (unless you're putting on an addition or
something breaks) but it is what defines your house as being a house,
not an office building or a buss station. Of course, there are content
management systems for websites as well (Joomla is a popular one) and
these are often specific to what you want your website to do. Wordpress
is the industry standard and leader for blog content management
systems. Oh, and it's free.
How to create a blog that's unique: create or modify a template to make it pretty. Themes are what make LaFujiMama.com look different from GoBackpacking.com and FCCpomona.org.
A theme is like the drywall, plaster and paint you put over your studs
and frame of your house. All three of these sites run on Wordpress, but
they look very different. Each of them does this via a different theme,
which they've customized to fit their own style. Guess what? Once you
install Wordpress, getting a new theme is as easy as clicking a button
on the back-end and searching for one you like. Modifying it might take
a bit of know-how, but there's so many GORGEOUS themes out there, you'll find something that's to your liking and your ability level to modify.
Once you've got your framework and theme set up, all you need to do is start filling up the site with content!
How to Create a Blog
The basics of how to create a blog are
simple. Step one, register a domain name. Step two, purchase domain
hosting. Step three, install Wordpress and set up a database. Step
four, choose, install and activate a theme. Step five - start writing!
Step one of how to create a blog - register a domain name
step two and step three are made much easier if you use a one-click
solution such as GoDaddy. If you do this, you can make these first
three steps seamless and automated no mater your experience level.
Start by finding a domain name that's available. After you've added
that to your cart, add hosting. You only need the basic hosting plan
until your blog becomes the next hot thing and then you can upgrade.
Checkout and pay the nice man.
Once your purchase has been 'delivered' to you (you'll get an email) you've well on your way.
Step two of how to create a blog - set up Wordpress
if you were learning how to create a blog several years ago, you'd have
to do these next steps from scratch. If you're doing them on a
non-one-click web host, make sure to read all the instructions at
Wordpress.org about how to set up the Wordpress files so that they work
right. You might want to learn how create a blog the 'long way' if, for
instance, you're setting up a blog on your ecommerce store or something
where you do your own hosting or where you have a dedicated server for
Once your purchase is live, you'll want to find
the 'one-click-setup' features for your account. In GoDaddy you log
into your Hosting Account, click manage account, then navigate to
managing your applications. This will open a new screen where you can
find Wordpress listed among a bunch of applications that GoDaddy will
install automatically for you. Click 'install'.
You will then
be walked through the second step of how to create a blog. Just answer
the questions your hosting provider asks and you'll be good to go. Oh,
and write down what you input as you go along! You'll probably need
that info later.
How to create a blog step three - make it pretty
you've got your blog set up. It will be ugly, but it is all yours. Go
to www.yourblogdomain.com/wp-admin.php and log-in with your
administration username and password your created in the setup process.
You'll be logged in and taken to your Dashboard.
"appearance" on the left hand column and then "theme" to add and modify
your theme. Search for and find a theme you like, click install and
then activate, and you're good to go.