This is a detailed tutorial on how to start a WordPress blog and make money for beginners.
Many persons wish to start a blog and make money, but how to go about it is the problem.
Starting a blog is no longer difficult as it used to be in the past since the emergence of Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress.
Hence, whether you wish to start a blog to earn passive income, or share learning tips, or create brand awareness, or even create an eCommerce website, you can now do that in a few minutes from the comfort of your homes with this tutorial on how to start a WordPress blog and make money.
Things You Need to Create a Blog
Before you can start a WordPress blog, there are basically 2 things you need.
- A domain name (eg, yourwebsitename.com, atblast.com).
- A Web Hosting (Where your website files and content will be stored).
Let’s discuss these briefly so that you will understand why you need them to create a blog.
1. A Domain Name
A domain name is the first thing you need to start a WordPress blog or any other blog for that matter.
A domain name is your website address. Every blog or website must have a domain name.
Without a domain name, people cannot find your website on the web.
What this means is that your domain name is the address that people will type in their browsers to get to your website.
For example, if you want to visit this website, all you need do is type in atblst.com on your web browser, and you will be taken to this website.
Now that you have an idea of what a domain name is, and why it is very important, you will need to get your own domain name.
To get your own domain name, you will have to buy from domain name registrars like Namecheap, Godaddy. A domain name usually costs less than $15.
Tips To Consider When Buying a Domain Name
When buying a domain name for your blog, here are a few tips you must observe.
- Ensure that your domain name is as short as possible.
- Choose a domain name that will be very easy to remember.
- Pick a domain name that matches or directly relates to your brand name. Remember, it will be your identity on the internet.
However, unless you already have a domain name, I suggest you buy it when buying a web hosting plan for your website, as most web hosting plan comes with a free domain.
As a matter of fact, the web hosting plan I will recommend for you in this guide will give you a free domain name for one year.
This will save you about $15.
2. A Web Hosting
The next important thing you need to start a blog is web hosting. A web hosting is where all your website files, contents, images, etc, will be stored.
Without web hosting, you cannot create a blog even if you have a domain name. To get web hosting, you will have to buy from companies that sell hosting services.
These companies provide you with the bandwidth and server you need to host your blog. Look at like this: you want to build a blog, you need storage to build your blog on because your blog cannot just exist on an empty space.
These hosting companies will offer you the storage to build your blog, and in turn, you pay them a yearly rent for the storage they offer you.
Hence, choosing a good hosting company is very important. Your choice of a web hosting company and pricing plan is determined by the kind of blog you want to build.
There are so many web hosting companies out there, however, I recommend Bluehost.
Bluehost is one of the largest and best web hosting companies in the world today. In addition, Bluehost is cheap, considering all the services they offer.
This blog (Atblast.com) is hosted on Bluehost.
Important: We can help you create a WordPress blog for FREE. Check out how to get started with our free WordPress blog setup.
Getting Started With Bluehost
To begin, use this link to visit Bluehost website and click on the Get Started button.
Select Your Plan
On the next screen, select your package plan. You will find 4 pricing plans on the Bluehost page.
- Choice Plus
Select your preferred package plan. For beginners, I recommend the Basic Plan because it is cheap and has all you need to get your blog online.
Click the select button on the preferred package of your choice. This will take you to the next screen where you will have to register a domain name.
Register a Domain
Remember we talked about the importance of a domain name. It’s time to register yours.
Now, enter the domain name you want to use for your blog on the first box (Don’t worry, you are getting it for free).
Domain names usually end with .com, .org, .net, .web, .tech, .ng, etc. It is recommended to choose a .com domain name.
Though, feel free to select a .org or .net domain or any other type if you feel you prefer it for your website.
The second box allows you to use a domain name you already have from another domain name registrar.
Hence, if you have another domain name you wish to use, simply type it into the second box and click the Next button.
If you are not sure which domain to use for now, you can safely click on the I’ll create my domain later, to continue with the hosting registration.
After you have successfully purchased your web host, you can then create a domain name at your convenience.
Fill in Your Account Information
On the next screen, you will be required to fill in your personal details. Ensure all your details are currently filled.
Choose Your Package Information and Extras
After you have filled in your personal details, scroll down to package information and package extras.
Now select how long you wish to pay for your hosting plan. Feel free to select 12 months, 24 months, or 36 months hosting plan.
Next, scroll down a little, you will find the extra packages you can purchase with your hosting plan.
De-select every option. Ensure, no option is tick. Selecting any of those will increase the amount you will pay for the hosting. Moreover, you can always get those free after your blog is set up.
Now, you will be required to fill in your payment information. Ensure you do this correctly.
After this, accept Bluehost’s terms of service and click on the Submit button to complete your purchase.
If the purchase is successful, you will receive an email notification from Bluehost. The information will contain your Bluehost account login details.
If you have gotten to this place, you have successfully purchased a Web hosting plan and a domain name.
Now you have all you need to create your blog, let’s proceed to create the blog.
Select A Blogging Platform
The first thing you must know as we get started in creating a blog is that there are many platforms out there that allow you to easily create a blog without knowing or doing any coding.
These platforms are known as Content Management Systems (CMS).
There are many types of CMS one can use to build a blog or a website. Some of them are WordPress, Wix, Joomla, Drupal, etc.
No doubt, these platforms are okay to create a website. However, the best of them all is WordPress.
According to recent statistics conducted by Builtwith, of all the websites on the internet built with Content Management Systems (CMS), 49% is built with WordPress.
This is to show you that WordPress.org is the best and most preferred CMS when it comes to building any kind of website or blog of your choice.
If you are wondering why this is, then you might want to check out some of the benefits of using WordPress.
Since we are going to be using WordPress blogging platform, we will have to install it into our hosting account.
I am assuming you purchased your web hosting from Bluehost. As such, I will be using Bluehost to guide you through the installation process.
However, the procedure is still the same even if you are not using Bluehost.
Before we proceed, if you prefer to use a domain name you already own from Namecheap or Godaddy, you will first have to point and assign the domain to Bluehost.
Here is an article that will guide you on how to point and assign a Godaddy and Namecheap domain name to Bluehost.
If you registered your domain from Bluehost while purchasing your hosting plan, then you have nothing to worry about.
Create a New WordPress Site
Now, login to your Bluehost account using your login details. If it is your first time, you should see a simple wizard that will take you through the steps of installing a WordPress website.
If you don’t see it, never worry. Just follow the steps below.
On your Bluehost dashboard, on the left menu panel, click on My Sites. This will take you to a page where you can create a WordPress website.
Now click on Create Site
Enter your Site Name and Tagline
Enter your preferred Blog name and tagline. Don’t worry, you can always change it later.
Now click on the Next button to begin Installing your WordPress Website.
Select a Domain to Install your WordPress
Now, on the drop-down list, select the domain name that you bought. You can leave Leave every other thing the way they are, and click on Next.
The installation will begin, and in less than 2 minutes your WordPress blog should be completely installed.
After the installation is finished, you will be taken to the next screen where you will see the WordPress installed successfully notification and your login details.
Copy and save the username and password, as it is what you will be using to log in to your WordPress blog.
If you followed this tutorial to this point, then you must have successfully installed your WordPress blog.
Customizing Your WordPress Blog
Now that your WordPress blog has been successfully installed into your hosting account, you will need to customize it.
First login to your WordPress admin dashboard. To do that simply go to yourdomain.com/wp-admin on a web browser. Replace yourdomain.com with the domain name you bought.
You will be taken to your login page where you will need to enter your username and password.
Now, enter the username and the password you were given (the one I asked you to save) after you successfully installed WordPress, and clicked on the Log In button. This will take you into your admin dashboard.
Install Theme on Your Website
One good thing about WordPress is that you can easily customize your site however you please.
The first thing to do after you have logged in is to change your theme and Install the necessary plugins for your blog.
By default, a newly installed WordPress blog comes with a basic theme that you may not like. The good thing is, you can change it to whichever one you desire.
Theme is what gives your site that beautiful and unique look. You don’t need to code anything to give your blog the design of your choice.
All you need is to look for the theme that pleases you and install it on your website.
To change your WordPress theme, go to Appearance on the left panel on your admin dashboard, then select Themes.
On the next screen, click Add New at the top of the page.
This will take you to the WordPress theme repository, where you will see thousands of free themes available that you can simply install directly into your blog.
On the next screen, select any theme of your choice. You can sort them using the Featured theme, Popular themes, and Latest themes buttons.
When you see the theme that you like, simply click on Install, to Install the theme.
If you prefer or have a premium theme, you can also install it on your site.
To do this click the Upload Theme button, then select the theme you already downloaded and saved on your computer.
After this, click Install. Please note that the theme must be in Zip format.
After the upload is successful, click Activate theme, and the theme will be activated on your site.
However, for a beginner, I recommend you try out some of the free themes from the WordPress theme repository before deciding to purchase one.
There are thousands of great free themes on the WordPress repository that might just give you what you want.
If you are confused about which one to use, see a list of 75 best free WordPress themes written by ThemeGrill.
However, for a start, I recommend Schema Lite theme for your new blog. It is one of the fastest free WordPress themes with good design. The good thing is that you can install it right from your dashboard.
To install Schema Lite, there is a search box on top of the WordPress themes page. Use the search field and type in the theme name of the theme you want to install.
In this case, since it is Schema we want to install, we will just type it and click Search.
After you have entered search, the theme that you seek will appear.
Now, click Install, then Activate, and the theme will be installed and activated on your blog.
Now you have installed a theme on your blog, its time to customize it to suit your taste.
To do this, simply go to the Appearance menu on the left panel and click on Customize.
You will be taken to the theme customizer page where you can customize the settings of your theme to suit your taste.
Installing Plugins on Your WordPress Website
Themes alone do not make a blog. You need to also install the necessary plugins that will give your site the professional look and functions it needs.
There are thousands of available WordPress plugin, both free and paid ones. However, you don’t just go about installing any plugin you see. It will not be healthy for your site.
For a start below are 5 free basic WordPress plugins that I recommend you install on your blog right away.
1. Yoast SEO: Simply put, this helps optimize your site, so it can be seen on search engines like Google.
2. Jetpack: This is an all in one plugin. It will extend your site’s functionality.
4. Wordfence Security: This helps to improve your WordPress website security
5. UpdraftPlus: This automatically backup your WordPress website.
6. Classic Editor: By default, your website will come with the Gutenberg editor interface which might be a little difficult for you to use.
However, with the Classic Editor plugin, you have a simple editor interface.
All the plugins listed above are free and can be installed directly from your admin dashboard.
Change Site Title and Tagline
If you didn’t choose your site title and tagline during installation, you can now set that.
To do this, simply go to go to Settings » General
After this, enter your preferred site title, tagline, and email for your blog. You can see your tagline as a slogan.
Change Your Website Permalink
Each time you publish a new blog post or pages, WordPress gives each of those blog posts or pages a unique URL also known as permalinks.
These permalinks are what people can use and locate your published blog posts and pages.
By default, WordPress sets your default permalinks for posts and pages using a unique ID number. e.g, http://mynewblog.com/?p=123
These default permalinks or URLs are not good for your users and SEO. A good permalink should be readable.
Hence, you need to change the default WordPress permalinks to post name or any other that you desire.
To change your blog permalinks, go to Settings » Permalinks
Next, select Post name as your permalinks and save.
Add The Necessary Pages to Your Website
WordPress pages are static content that allows you to add relevant information about your site.
For a start, you should have these basic pages: Privacy-Police, an About Us, and Contact Us.
You can create as many pages as you need, but these are the ones you should set up immediately before your blog is up and running.
To create a page on your website, simply navigate to Pages in the left menu panel and click on All Pages.
On the next screen, click Add New on top of the pages. Since it’s your first time, you will see some Pages created for you by WordPress. You can simply edit it or delete it.
On the next screen, If you installed the Classic Editor plugin as I recommended, then you will get a simple editor interface like the screenshot below.
Now, enter the following information in accordance with the numbering.
- Add your Page title. e.g About Us
- You change the URL of your page, e.g, mynewblog.com/about
- Write the content of your page
- Use the Save Draft button to save the page if you don’t want to publish it yet.
- With the Preview button, you can see how your page will look like after you publish it.
- When you are done, hit the Publish button to publish the page.
Create a Menu
Menu allows your site visitors to be able to navigate easily to different pages, sections, and categories on your site.
To create a menu on your site, on the left panel, click on Appearance, then Menus. This will take you to the Menu page.
On the next screen, enter the name of your menu, e.g, Main Menu. Now click on Create Menu
Next, to add items on the menu you just created, select the pages you want to add to the menu. Now click on the Add to Menu button
Next, under the Menu Settings select the location you which your menu to be displayed. In this case, select Primary, then click Save Menu.
Publishing Your First Blog Post
Now you’ve done the necessary customizations and settings on your new blog, you can now publish your first blog post.
Publishing a post isn’t that difficult. It’s similar to what you did when you created your pages.
To write and publish a post on your blog go to Posts then Add New. This will take you to the post editor interface.
Now, add categories and tags to your posts. Categories and tags are designed to help you organize your site contents for easy navigation.
After writing your post, hit Publish.
How To Make Money From Your Blog
Now that you have a blog, the next thing you might want to consider is how you can start making money from your blog.
There are many ways to make money as a blogger.
Some of them, you can start immediately on your new blog, while others require you to have a little traffic.
We have written a well-detailed article on our blog on how you can start monetizing your blog. You might want to check it out.
Here is it: Beginners guide on how to make money from blogging.
That’s all on how to start a WordPress blog and make money.
If you followed this tutorial to this point, congratulations, you just created a WordPress blog.
I hope you found this tutorial on how to start a WordPress blog and make money helpful?
We also offer a free WordPress blog set, just in case you need it. We don’t charge a dime for it.