You’re planning to start your first blog, right? But you don’t have any idea on how to use HTML, PHP, CSS, JQuery, XSLT, Flash, Mysql and other programming codes.
All you need to get started is a web browser and nothing else, and you can be rest assured of coming up with the best self-hosted blog you’ve ever imagined in just 5 minutes or less.
Having said that, here’s a step by step guide on how to set up a functional blog in the shortest time possible:
Step 1: Choose a domain
Before you think of doing anything else, you need to come up with a domain name for your blog. And that will entirely depend on what you’re planning to blog about. For instance, if you’re planning to blog about cooking, then the name you choose should somehow revolve around the idea of food so that people can have a tip-off of what your blog is all about.
Once you’ve figured out a name, you can check if it’s available at any webhosting company such as HostGator, whois or InMotion. Generally, a domain name costs as cheap as $10 a year. So what happens when the domain name you’ve chosen isn’t available?
Simple; don’t panic… just go ahead and choose a series of other names until you find one that’s still available. Alternatively, change the extension. For example, if the name is not available on .com extension, try using .org or any other available alternative that suits you
Step 2: Get a webhost
After you’ve found a domain name that you’ve confirmed its availability, you can go ahead and get a webhost. Actually, people used to buy their domain names separately from their web hosting companies, but nowadays you can easily buy your domain name from the same company that you intend to host your blog.
Like we’ve noted, there are a number of web hosting companies to choose from: Stablehost, HostGator, Whois, and InMotion among the rest. Choose one.
After choosing a webhosting company, click on the “view web hosting plan” button. You’ll be directed to a page that requires you to choose a webhosting plan, just choose a “hatchling plan” or the “basic plan”, since you are just starting out. However, if you’re planning to host several domains, you can choose the “baby plan” or the “stable plan.”
In the next page, choose “register a domain name.” Here, you’ll be prompted to choose number of months, just choose one year before completing your billing information. Remember, you can either pay using PayPal or your credit card. Once done, complete your sign up procedure, and be sure to confirm with your email address.
Please note: this guide helps you to open a self-hosted blog instead of a word press-or BlogSpot-hosted blog. Actually, self-hosted blogs are recommended for serious bloggers, but if you’re the type that prefers free stuffs, you can easily get a free blog with “wordpress.com” or “blogspot.com” extensions by visiting their respective websites–wordpress.com or blogspot.com.
Step 3: Installing your blog
Unless you have a good reason of installing your blog on another platform, it’s advisable to install a WordPress blog. As a matter of fact, WordPress will only take you 3 minutes to install and, more importantly, you don’t need any programing skill to manage your blog.
To install, type “yourdomain.com/cpanel” into the url section of your browser. For example, if you’ve chosen “speedisha” as your domain name, just type “speedisha.com/cpanel into your browser.
Now log in using the username and the password you received in your email. Once done, you’ll be directed to your cpanel. To install wordpress, you can scroll down and click on the “Quickinstall” link at the bottom of the page.
Next, look at the sidebar of the QuickInstall page and you’ll find “WordPress” in the Blog Software section. You can now follow the steps presented below to install WordPress. This should take you about one or two minutes, depending on your internet speed:
.01. Click on “installwp1”, and then “continue.”
.02. In the next pop up, you’ll be presented with “http://”, then pick domain, and lastly, a blank box. Just fill the first two boxes, but leave the blank box unfilled so that your installation is not prompted into a subdirectory.
.03. In the “admin” section, do not use the word admin as your username. Instead, pick a unique username for security purposes.
.o4. Now click on “install now.”
Once the installation is complete, you’ll be asked to confirm using your login URL, username, and the password you chose. Complete the procedure and you’d have created a functional self-hosted blog.