Last Updated on September 2, 2021
Want to make a blog site but don’t know where to start? Here’s a quick guide of creating a WordPress blog to start you off.
Having a blog is a great way to share your thoughts – from general musings to detailed analysis of subjects of a certain niche. WordPress currently powers 42% of the websites available on the internet. It’s a very flexible platform that you can use to easily have an online presence.
Regardless of your topic and the purpose for which you write, follow these easy steps to create your own blog.
Setting Up Your WordPress
Before you start creating your content, you’ll have a few things to set up first, such as getting a website host, and claiming your own domain.
There are a lot of WordPress hosting plans online that you could customize to fit your needs. Check out our guide on WordPress hosting to learn more about hosting. Most hosting providers already include a free domain in their domain, so that’s a plus! In case they don’t, you can purchase a domain on other domain registrars like GoDaddy and even Google.
Design Your Website
When you design your blog, it’s also important to choose a theme that’s easily customizable. There are hundreds of themes available for choosing in the WordPress theme directory. Change your theme by hovering over Appearance on the left menu panel.
When you get to the Themes page, you will see an Add New button at the top of the page. Just click this and browse through the directory until you see the theme that fits your preference.
Click Install on your preferred theme and activate it!
Customize Your Theme
Now it’s time to customize your theme. So go to the Theme Customizer (from your dashboard, Appearance > Customize) to tailor your theme to your liking.
Each theme will have different design options so the contents of your Theme Customizer will vary depending on what theme you choose. Because we chose Blocksy, our theme settings will look like this:
Get creative and make the necessary adjustments for your blog. Now let’s design your home page!
Designing Your Home Page
Let’s make your blog more inviting and design your homepage. You can use your home page to inform your blog readers about the different types of content available on your blog, and even a bit about you, the writer.
Create a new page. On the menu panel on the left, you will see Posts (which should be the fourth option from the top). Hover over it and click Add New.
Here are some basic sections you could add to your home page to keep your readers interested and engaged:
1. Hero Section
The hero is now the standard entry section for a great site. It is one of the most important sections because it is the first impression that readers will have of your blog. Be sure to clearly show the central theme and topic of your blog so readers will know if they stumbled upon something they are interested in reading.
2. Latest Posts Section
Needless to say, the main section of your blog would be your posts. Display them in an easy-to-digest and inviting layout so readers can easily scan and explore more posts that may pique their interest.
3. About the Author
A good ‘about the author’ section is a great opportunity for readers to get to know you more, and get a sense of your point of view. Showing them a glimpse of who you are and your background establishes your expertise on your topic and lends some authenticity to your posts.
4. Contact Section with Social Media Links
A contact section is a great addition to a blog site. While people can comment on your posts in site, it would be great to show how else they can reach you. When it comes to blogs, the broader the reach, the better.
Create Your First Blog Post
Now, it’s time to create your first blog post!
On your WordPress dashboard, you will see a menu panel on the left side. Posts should come second in the menu panel. Hover over it, and click Add New in the pop-up menu.
Once you click Add New, the WordPress editor should be launched. Type in your blog post title that would be fitting for the content you’ll be writing about, and get crazy with the content!
Once you’ve written your content, here’s a tip: add a Call-to-Action. It’s the perfect tool to let readers know what to do next. Here’s an example of a CTA where the newsletter is being promoted:
Another option would be to add a section where you could put blog articles that are relevant to the topic of the current article they are reading. This will keep your readers engaged and they will be more likely to keep consuming your content.
Gain More Readers and Keep Them Coming Back
Once you’ve set the groundwork for your blog, now how do you gain more readers? Here are some actions you can take to make sure your blog gains some traction:
Optimize Your Blog for Search Engines
Presence in search engines is free and is the best way to gain more organic traffic. Optimize your blog so that you can rank high on the search engine results pages. We recommend reading through Neil Patel’s step by step guide to start an SEO campaign.
It’s easy to set up your SEO campaign but the key thing is patience. You may not rank the minute you get your campaign going. However, if you keep working on it, your position will most definitely rank higher little by little.
Keep Writing Content
Keep producing content that will be of interest to your readers. The best way to do this is through making analyses of the content that you have already published. Take note of which ones are gaining a lot of attention and create similar types of work. You could also search keywords that will help you gain a better sense of what users search online. Google has a lot of free or freemium tools that can be of use, such as Google Analytics and even Google Trends.
You could also subscribe to premium tools like Ahrefs, or SEMRush if you really want to dig deeper into SEO analytics. If you want a guide on how to use these tools, let us know in the comments below!
Establish a Subscribers list
Inviting your blog readers to subscribe to your blog is a way for your readers to stay updated on new content that you put out. You could send out weekly newsletters or whatever frequency works for your blog. This will remind them to check out new content you have put out to keep them coming back!
Creating a blog on WordPress might seem a bit intimidating but it’s relatively easy. Any beginner in WordPress will be able to have their WordPress blog running in no time! To recap, here are some steps you can take to start your blog: