Building a WordPress Blog Is Easy!
There’s good reason why millions of people are using WordPress.org to make money on the internet today. Google loves WP sites and they can be designed to suit most needs and simple to build.
Get Your Domain Name
A domain name is going to cost you about $10 or under, .com names are still the most favored. Make sure your domain name is relevant to your niche and contains your main keyword or keyword phrase.
Pay for Hosting
There are hundreds of reliable hosting companies around. You can pay monthly or annually and it doesn’t come out to much. It depends on whether you’re building one site or many. One of the most important things you’ll need is a very high percentage of up-time, which means that the host is reliable and your site isn’t going to be inaccessible.
You also need a site that has cPanel and one with excellent customer service, 24/7.
You will receive an email that contains your password and a link to your cPanel, plus information about your DNS settings (domain name servers). Go back to the site where you registered your domain name and enter those DNS settings, so your site can reside on your host’s servers. Depending on how busy each party is this can happen in minutes or sometimes it may take a day to “propagate”. Any longer than that and you may have a problem.
Regardless, you can now start building your WordPress site.
Log into your cPanel and find the Fantastico smiley face button and follow the instructions. A lot of the info will be filled in automatically. When you click on the Fantastico icon, look for a list on the left pane and click on WordPress. Don’t be scared, I know ten year old’s that can do this, there’s nothing technical.
Log into your cPanel with your password and the login your host emailed to you and go to ‘Addon Domains’ in your cPanel. While you’re in your cPanel you can set up the email addresses you want to use (for example sales@yournewsite (dot) com). You can also opt to have any emails forwarded to your regular email address which saves a lot of time.
- Type your domain name into the first box without the www then add a Username and Password.
- Click add domain.
Most boxes will fill in automatically and you’ll go through to a confirmation page.
- Under “Blogs” on the left click on WordPress.
- On the next page click on New Installation.
The next page says Install Domain and your domain name will be in the box.
Add an admin name (do not use ‘admin’ as the admin user name; don’t make it more easier for hackers to hack your WP account) and password and fill in the other info – it will be emailed to you. Use your regular email address.
You will also be able to add a brief site description which can be changed later through your WP control panel.
You can get to the admin part of your WP site by putting your domain name and this extension in the address bar – yournewdomain.com/wp-admin if your site is live.
Log into your WP site, you should have gotten an email with your admin user name you created and a temporary password. You’ll see the stock template that WP provides everyone when they first start. It’s nice but probably not the look you want. Look down the left hand side and you’ll see a button called Appearance.
Get a cup of coffee or a beer. This may take some time. Choosing one of the thousands of free themes is about the most time-consuming part of setting up a WP site. If you can’t find one you like, then you could buy a ready-made theme. Many of the free WP themes do allow you to change colors and add header graphics, so don’t pay for a theme just because that’s all you need.
You’ll have to decide how many columns you want, where you want your sidebar to appear – left or right hand side. You can choose themes that look like newspapers or picture galleries. Like I said, this is going to take time.
If you have already written an article, cut and paste it into your new site, publish and experiment until you find the theme you like best.
Want it to look like a website or do you want it to be a true blog? You can have it either way with WP by choosing between Posts and Pages.
Under Setting General, you can set the time and date and your time zone. Under Settings Reading you can set what shows on your front page but only after you’ve added content. If you want the look of a “normal” website, you can set this to your home page or a welcome page. Otherwise if you want to run your WP site as a blog, you can display your latest post. Under Settings Permalinks use the custom setting and enter this: /%postname%/, otherwise your URL extensions will only display numbers and dates. By using the Postname setting your page’s URL will appear as yournewsite.com/your-post-title.
We will talk about plugins in a later article.
Now it’s time to add some articles. Starting your site with between 3 or 5 articles is a good idea. If you have more, you can schedule them to be posted one at a time over a number of days. This is a great feature of WordPress – even if you’re going on vacation WP will add your posts as scheduled while you’re away.
You can add video and pictures easily and if you have some knowledge of HTML you can also add a few extra touches but the toolbar at the top is very intuitive much like MS Word. You can either save your page or post as a draft or publish it immediately.
If you get stuck with anything I guarantee you’ll find an answer on the internet easily – millions of people use WordPress. So as Nike says Just Do It. Don’t be scared. Your new site won’t be indexed for a while so go ahead and experiment.
Remember the rules of SEO. Have your keyword in the Title, and first and last paragraphs and a few in the text body. Always use a keyword in the ALT text of your images too, and you’ll be good to go. For even better SEO there’s a free plugin that really helps called ‘All in One SEO’.
Need Some Leads?
One of the smartest things you can do as soon as you have your site looking the way you want it is to add an opt-in box. Go to widgets and slide an empty Text box over to your sidebar and paste in the code for your opt-in box. To get an opt-in box code and have an automatic response you need an autoresponder. There’s even free plugins that will add one for you, but it means you will have to handle the responses yourself. You will add advertising banners and Google Adsense ads via these text widgets too. You can move them around until everything looks just right. If you want ads above, in the middle or and/or end of your text, there are free plugins for that too. Just don’t put any advertising on your site just yet. Give it a couple of weeks to make sure your site is indexed and it looks the way you want it.
If you intend to run email campaigns it’s probably a good idea to sign up with an autoresponder service that will provide you with a choice of opt-in box designs. It’s not expensive, can be paid monthly but is something else you must learn to use effectively. Building an email list right from the start is smart. It will grow with your business.
If you’re a WordPress user – tell others why you like it so much and share any tips for setting up a WP site even faster.
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