Blogging Boot Camp Day 2
Choose Hosting Setup and Themes
No matter what type of blog you wish to run, hosting is essential, you simply can't do without it.
You may argue the point that you can use a free shared hosting account or an account from WordPress.com. These are free options which can be an alternative, but they shouldn’t be used in the case of a personal blog or biz blog, here's why...
In short free hosting is terrible and you need to be in control of your domain and webspace. With free hosting you have no control and most of all no brand.
You decide which domain looks more professional domain 1 or domain 2:
Domain 1 - www.WordPress.yourchosenblogname.com
Domain 2 – www.yourchosenblogname.com
“If you chose number 2 you are correct”
The bottom line is, don’t try to save investment money on the key items for your business. Hosting is a must, whatever online business you are in, so don’t go free hosting you'll regret it.
If you are wondering what the costs are, they are tiny at approximately $3.95 per month including your domain name, so don't sweat the costs.
Remember - $3.95 per month allows you to run an entire blog with a free theme.
OK, now it's time to check for a domain name:
Once you have found a domain name for your blog using the checker above, you will be taken to Blue Host to choose your hosting package. I recommend the cheapest package they have to get you started.
You don't need a huge managed server, a simple hosting package and a domain is all you need.
Grab the basic $3.95 package below:
*please note prices can fluctuate a little.
We are going to use a combination of WordPress (the most versatile platform) and BlueHost as your hosting partner. Bluehost has an automated WordPress setup feature, so you don't have to worry about the techy side of anything.
This is a great a stable partnership that costs very little and will run your whole business no problem... so remember to grab only the basic package...
Once you have grabbed the basic package, you will be asked to choose your domain. (If you used the checker above, this part will be skipped).
What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is the name of your website if you didn't already know. My domain name is “dansumner.com” as you can see in the URL of your web browser.
If you don’t have the domain name idea just yet, stay cool! You can click the link to create it later and continue with registration while you think.
On the next page you can create your account:
These form items are pretty straight forward, until you reach the length of your plan. The 36 month plan is the cheapest option and provides the best value for your money.
However, if the 36 month is too much commitment, the12 month option is still great value:
*please note prices can fluctuate over time but not a great deal.
Remember, you can cancel risk free for 30 days. Bluehost offers this as a guarantee, and you can cancel your plan at any time during the first 30 days and get a full refund.
Once you have chosen your plan, it's time to ignore the extras.
Yes that's what I said, ignore the extras apart from domain privacy, so leave this checked:
Domain privacy, stops the spammers and companies calling you about your domain and asking for money. Keep your domain private.
The next step is to create a strong password, and login to your hosting account. All your details will also be sent to you via email, so you can login without any problems:
Congratulations You Have Your Own Business Domain and Hosting!
Well done! Give yourself a high 5 and refill your tea or coffee cup...
Now let's get setup and get ready to view your website online. This part is very simply indeed...just a few more steps to go.
Once you have your login details (sent to you via email also) you now get to choose your website setup and what kind of website you are creating:
Simply go through the process and Bluehost will guide you through the setup to guide you on what type of blog you going to create. If your business niche is not on the list, don't worry simply choose the personal option.
It's Time to Choose a Blog
The next steps are a pretty simple point a click process.
Bluehost will ask you what you want to setup in terms of your website. Check the blog image as shown below:
Add your Blog Name and Tag Line
The next steps are to choose your blog name and tag line to setup. Now if you bought a domain, you will know roughly what your blog is going to be called.
Don't worry if you can't think of a title and tag line just yet, these can be added when you create your blog and design your theme:
The next window you will see is a choose your theme window. DO NOT choose a theme yet, simply skip over this section to be taken directly to the members area and blog install window which should appear as soon as your login to your control panel:
Members area Login
It's time to celebrate a little as your blog should now be installing while you wait and it will almost be ready for you to login to the control panel and see your new blog online. When you login to the members area you have 2 options:
1. View My Site Button (allows you to look at your new blog)
2. WordPress Button (logs you into the WordPress dashboard
You can see from the dashboard image below, that your website is ready. Simply ignore the check boxes under the recommended tab and go right for the WordPress admin panel by clicking the Blue WordPress button
Congratulations, you have a WordPress blog online. This is the start of an exciting new business!
Choose Your Theme
OK, let's get your new creation looking pretty with the addition of a new theme. From the image above, you need to hit the blue WordPress Button which will log you into your admin panel. You should see something similar to the image below once done:
The section we are most interested in is the - Appearance - Themes section on the left hand side:
Once you find this section, simply click the Themes link and you will be taken to the theme section of your blog dashboard. Once inside the themes section, we are going to look for Flash Blog Theme by using the search bar on the right:
Once you have searched for the Flash Blog Theme, you should see the blog theme appear on the left hand side directly below the search bar. Once you see it, simply install it and activate it:
Once you hit the activate button, you can then head to the top left hand side of your blog control panel where you see the small house icon (home) and your domain name, right click and open in a new tab or window:
You will see your new theme installed, ready to be edited similar to this:
The video goes into a little more detail about themes and posts. However, we will address the theme design in more detail in the lesson tomorrow.
Thanks for reading today!
Ok, that's about all for today's lesson. I hope you enjoyed it.
What you should have taken away from this lesson is:
1. You have your own hosting
2. You have your blog online and your free theme installed