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How to setup your WordPress blog – the easy way

Let me guess, you want to start your own blog but you don’t know how, right? What do you mean how I knew that? The fact that you are reading this article told me so. So, let’s take that walk together and create your blog right away. It’s very easy, really.


In this guide we will focus on how to create your own self-hosted blog. If you want a ready-to-go solution, you can try Blogger or WordPress.com

Register a good name

First things first, you need to register your own domain name. This is the easy part. The hard part is to find one that you really like and is available. I was scratching my head for hours till I came up with BakedBird. So get a pen and paper and start writing down your ideas. Four to five domain ideas are great, don’t get too carried away. Make sure they are short and easy to remember. Avoid dashes and numbers at all costs since they make it hard to memorize. Few people will remember my-wonderful-blog.com or mywonderfulblog123.com let alone a combination of dashes and numbers! Check if the domain you listed is available on  a site like GoDaddy

Now that you have your favorite ones listed, show them to some of your friends, or your family and ask them what they think, which one they like more. Feedback is very important. If you are still not sure, go grab a coffee, juice, beer, whatever you like and stop thinking about it. Give it a couple of days and come back to your list with a clear mind and go with the one you like the most.

Get a reliable host plan

Now we’re done with the name, we need somewhere to host the website. Most times you can buy a hosting plan from your domain registrar. Shared hosting plans can do the work most of the time but if you notice downtime because of hight traffic, you can always upgrade your plan or move to a VPS plan but those are quite costier.

Of course there are free alternatives but as you can guess, most free hosting plans have a handful of disadvantages like lack of support for databases. Others only support plain HTML websites which are not for you. If you decide to go free to try your luck, worry not, I have also been there. Having tried many free website hosting providers, I highly suggest Hostinger as they support many premium features on their free plan.

Install WordPress

Let’s see, you have your own domain name and somewhere to host your website. Our next step is to install WordPress. Most hosts come with an easy 1-click installer for WordPress but if you can’t find it, you here is how to install WordPress step by step.

Go to the official WordPress website and click the download button. When the download is finished, you have to upload the files on the server that host your website. You can do this directly from your browser but using an FTP client like FileZilla is the most preferred way.

Uploading the files will take some time so you can go make you a coffee. Now go to the databases section on your website’s control panel and create a database for WordPress. Note the database name, user and password because you will need them later.

By now the files should have been uploaded to the server and you’re ready for the next step! Go to your domain’s address and you will see a screen prompting you to select a language for your blog. Do so and click continue. The next page shows what you will need for the installation. Hit the let’s go button and you will see a screen like this

 

WordPress setup
The steps are self explanatory but just in case, in the first field enter the name of your database, on the second and third the database username and password. The database host can be left as localhost but if your provider hosts databases on a separate server, fill this field with the appropriate url which can be found at the database details most of the time.
As for the table prefix, you can leave it as is, or change it. It doesn’t play a very important role in this case. After you’ve filled out all the fields, hit submit and then run the install.
After the installation is finished, you will be prompted to enter some details like your site’s name, your username and email. Do so and then click on the ‘install WordPress’ button and you’re done. Now to access the dashboard of your website, all you need to do is go to yourdomain.com/wp-admin and enter your name and password

Find a theme that suits you

If you visit your website right now, you will notice that it looks really simple. The latest WordPress theme, twenty seventeen, looks way better than its predecessors but it may still not satisfy you. You can find hundreds of free templates by clicking Appearance > Themes on your dashboard. Notice that ‘add new’ button on the top? Click it to browse for a theme that you like.

Don’t worry if you still can’t find one that’s cut out for you. There are many marketplaces out there like ThemeForest where you can find excellent WordPress themes for a fairly good price. The best part here is that they all come with a detailed documentation, demo content and support directly from the theme developer. Nothing can go wrong here. Well if you can’t find that perfect theme, you can always hire someone to create one just for you.

That’s all! Come to think of it, installing and setting up WordPress wasn’t that hard, was it? Now you’re ready to go write your posts on your very own website. Make sure to drop me a line when you have your blog setup and running, I’d be glad to read some of your posts.

Before you go, leave me a comment, what do you think about this guide? Was it clear enough? Was it helpful? I’d be very glad to learn your thoughts!