More and more people than ever are looking for a web-based presence. There were more than 1 billion websites online in 2014, you can assume we’re well past that now. Whether it’s for business or pleasure, one thing is for certain, the demand for a web presence is rife.
I’m not going to bore you with the ins and outs of all the various website types out there, what they all can do for you and how to build each and every one of them, no, in this article, I’ll keep it simple. Today, we’re going to run through the basics of blog building. From getting started right through to getting your project off the ground. We hope you find this article both useful and engaging and if you feel there are any pointers which I’ve missed, feel free to comment.
Choosing A Domain Name
I find choosing the right domain name one of the most difficult things to do when it comes to starting the blog. Content comes naturally and design is neither here not there. But the right domain can make or break your project and with so many good domains taken you’re either left with something absurdly long or quite frankly, rubbish.
A good domain needs to be one of two things. Either something brandable, a short, made up word that’s easy to remember and easy to spell or something which conveys the sector or niche you’re operating in. Personally, I’d choose a memorable brand over something product or service related but if that’s not within your budget you can always combine the two.
Finding a Web Hosting Company
Web hosting tends to be one of the easier things to sort out. There are literally thousands of web hosting companies out there and pretty much all of them will offer a web hosting package that is somewhat tailor-made for WordPress site and blogs in general. Take a look at hostpresto.com for an example of this – they offer a package specifically designed for WordPress which comes with a whole bunch of optimization features. This is the sort of thing you need ideally but to be honest any kind of web hosting will suffice as long as the package spec is sufficient for your websites needs.
If you’re just getting started then you can probably afford to go for one of the lower end packages but make sure that it can be scaled up as your website grows.
Content is King
Your websites content is by far the most important part of your product. It’s the content that will make or break your blog and it’s the content that will keep your visitors coming back for more. With any blog, especially if you’re blogging on a particular subject specifically, you need to become a voice – an authoritative figure on the subject in hand. With the amount of competition in virtually every sector online you will need to stand out and you’re not going to do that with bland run of the mill content which simply goes through the motions as opposed to actually providing the reader with something of use.
Obviously, if writing isn’t your strong point you should really question if a blog is for you. I realize they’re easy but if you’re not able to produce the right content then rest assured your blog is heading for a failure.
As mentioned above, themes are neither here nor there these days. There are tens of thousands of themes out there, some free, some paid but pretty much all of them will do the job. The competition in the theme design arena is rife so people are producing good things all over the place just to compete. A good resource for WordPress Themes is themeforest.net. Here you can find all of the most popular themes in the world and best of all you can get them at an affordable price.
The only downside is that the themes are obviously used elsewhere so you’re not going to have an entirely unique look. With that said I’m sure you can live with this if you’re only paying $20 for a theme as opposed to $2000 for something custom!
Getting it Going
Getting a blog off the ground is one of the most difficult things to do. There is so much competition in almost every sector you can dream up. You could have a great domain, great content and a great theme but without visitors, it’s effectively useless.
But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are ways to promote your website and if your blog is good enough the spark is all you need and your visitors will soon snowball.
You should most definitely have a presence on ALL of the social networks. Talk about what you’re posting, interact with other bloggers and authoritative figures in the industry. This will help you get your blog off the ground. You should also consider contacting other bloggers in your sector and offer to write content for their blog in return for an author link back to your website. This is a great way to get people interest in your blog. If you place an article on a high traffic blog and people like it, they will most definitely come to your blog to see similar content.
So there you have it. I genuinely hope this helps for those of you who are considering starting a blog. It won’t be easy, there are lots of things to consider obviously but if you put the time in and do it right the rewards both personally and financially can be huge.
If there is anything you would like to add feel free to comment. This is by no means a complete guide, every section outlined above can be expanded and expanded but this should at least serve as a start for you to go off and do your own research on the subject at hand.