If you want to learn how to start a blog then this tutorial is for you. I’ve made back every dollar I’ve invested into my blog and then some, so why shouldn’t you?! From sharing my advice to connecting with readers all over the earth, to working with great brands and being invited to awesome events, blogging has been so much more fun than any day job I’ve had.
Here’s how to set up your new WordPress blog with Bluehost for cheap so you can start blogging ASAP.
Step 1. Pick Your Domain
The first step to start your WordPress blog on Bluehost is to pick out your domain name. I went with Casey La Vie for several reasons. 1. I like puns, 2. I wanted my name in the title, 3. I didn’t want the title to be too specific to one genre. Even though I like writing about travel and health and beauty, I didn’t want to choose something like CaseyTravelsTheGlobe.com, because I wanted my domain to be something that could always work for me.
Want to see if your domain name is available? Just use the Name Checker below:
If your planned name is already taken you can always try to add “blog” to the end of your title. Plus, you can always change your domain at a later time. It just takes some work making sure you have redirect links set up and you’ll have to change your social media accounts, etc. So, while you do want to put some time and thought into this decision I also don’t want you to get so hung up on choosing a name for your blog that you keep putting off getting started in the first place. Sometimes you have to put the planning aside and go with action, like getting that domain and hosting all set up.
Step 2. Hosting
For ease of use, cost, convenience, and support I will recommend Bluehost for your hosting needs. This is the hosting I use for my site and I’ve never had any issues. There was one time in the first year when my site was down. I emailed support at Bluehost and they were already working on it. Within 30 minutes my site was back up and running. Any other time I’ve had a question or request, I’ve always received a very prompt response. This service alone makes me confident in recommending Bluehost. And the price is just they cherry on top.
I know that it’s intimidating to set up your blog, especially when it requires a financial investment. However, Bluehost is so affordable. Head to Bluehost.com and click the green “Get Started” button.
From here you can select the plan that will work best for you. I currently use the “plus” plan, however, “basic” is just as good to start with.
After selecting your plan you’ll see a screen asking for your domain or if you’d like to set one up. To keep everything under Bluehost, I’d set up your domain here using the domain you decided on from above. Plus, it’s free to choose one with Bluehost!
After this you’ll go through a regular checkout process. You’ll confirm your selections and be able to choose from additional add-ons. You can always pass on these now and add them later.
Then finally you add in your credit card information and make the purchase.
Now, set up your password on Bluehost and log into your hosting account. We’re almost all finished! Now’s time to link your hosting to a content management system.
Step 3: WordPress.org vs. WordPress.com
In addition to hosting and a domain, you’ll also need a Content Management System. This is where you’ll actually write your blog posts and edit things like your header and sidebar. It’s really the bones of your website. There are many different CMS’s out there (like Squarespace and Blogger), but I’m only going to recommend one for your purpose: WordPress.org.
WordPress.org allows you to have a custom domain. With WordPress.com you’ll have a title like, “caseylavie.wordpress.com.” Plus with WordPress.org you’ll be able to customize the website to your exact liking and have full ownership of it. If you are going to take your blog serious, I strongly recommend you go with WordPress.org and forget all the others.
Plus, it’s SUPER easy to set up WordPress with Bluehost. Here’s how:
When you’re logged into your Bluehost account, just head to the dashboard. You’ll see a button with “Install WordPress” on it. Click through the start button again. You’ll be asked to select your domain, which is the one you just signed up with. Then you’ll be asked for your blog name and to setup your login information. Your blog name should be similar if not exactly what your domain is. For example, my domain is caseylavie.com and my blog name is “Casey La Vie.”
Now you’re all signed up!!
Check your email so you can log into your WordPress admin account. This will be www.yoursitename.com/wp-admin.
Step 4. Themes & Design
You can absolutely start poking around your WordPress dashboard now and even start drafting blog post content. However, I’d quickly move to setting up the theme and design for your blog.
There are some themes available with Bluehost, but I prefer purchasing them elsewhere. A great female-friendly WordPress theme provider, that I love is Brittany Dawn Designs, but don’t forget Etsy.
Your theme purchase will include instructions on how to install the theme on WordPress. From there you’re all set up and ready to start blogging!
To recap: use Bluehost and WordPress.org to set up an inexpensive but totally awesome blog in just minutes!
For more blogging advice, check out these articles and resources:
- A Free Blog Traffic Guide from Lena Gott who also created the e-book “Traffic Transformation: 21 Strategies I Used to Increase My Monthly Page Views from 17k to 400k+ in 10 Months.”
- 6 Productivity and Motivation Tips – This article will help you stay on track to follow your goals!
- And here are some blog post ideas to get you started, plus a list of great hashtags for Instagram.
Let me know below if this tutorial helped you get started and what you’d like to do with your blog!
Casey is the founder of Casey La Vie & has been running this travel and lifestyle blog since 2016. She’s on a mission to balance her career as a social media manager with exploring her home of New York City and seeing more of the world.