One of the best decisions I ever made was to start a blog in 2019 … blah, blah, blah. Does this opening pitch sound familiar? It’s literally how "every" other "How to Start a Blog in 2019", "Start a Blog in 2019" and "Get Blogging in 2019" post begins. Boring! If you - yawn - want a long and drawn out comprehensive step-by-step guide, laboring through the usual rhetoric, feel free to head over to Blogired (we’re promoting them because they actually have a sense of humour about their conventional “Start a Blog” sales pitches). Or, if your time is a commodity and you can appreciate our (not so) subtle sarcasm - and you still want to start a blog - you can just skim over Blog But Why?’s Simple (and Entertaining) Guide to Starting a Blog in 2019 - the sentences that you’re currently reading. You’ll get through it all in under 7 minutes (not that we undertook a credible time analysis - seriously, nobody actually does ... in case you ever wondered) and know all the important things you need to know about getting a blog off the ground, but didn’t (even though, by virtue of your likely Google searches, you weren’t actually afraid to ask). Also, if you have “technical” blog related questions afterwards, well - Blogired will still be there waiting for you.
Why Start a Blog in 2019?
- Mostly, because a blog is a canvas for professional and creative expression.
- Also, you can make money from blogging. Well, some people do. Many don't. That's really up to you.
6 Simple Steps to Start a Blog in 2019
So, with simplicity in mind, the "how" of starting a blog in 2019 is easy. Like, really easy. Really really. [Blog But Why? Team inserts the obvious question ...] You ready?
- Decide on your blogging topic (or topics)
- Find your domain name (which is essentially the same as deciding on your blog’s name)
- Get a hosting account (yes, bluehost is the best host for beginners - really! Otherwise, we can also recommend Dreamhost)
- Choose your blogging platform (again, but you must’ve ready this before, WordPress is the perfect “one size fits all” for beginners)
- Tweak the obvious configuration settings that need adjusting
- Start publishing content
As for making money blogging in 2019 … #WatchThisSpace.
Just kidding. That’s the subject of another post on Blog But Why?
If it isn't an obvious point, you really do need to have an idea about “the purpose” of your blog before you go any further. If you don’t have a topic in mind, then how are you going to decide on an appropriate name for your blog. Elusive much? It’s pretty difficult to write up a blog post on … [“blank space baby”, and I'll write your name ... later]. In case you're wondering, the Blog But Why? Team are pro Taylor Swift and her music. No need to end up with a nasty scar.
There are many aspirational reasons to start a blog (or start blogging - there is a difference). Tapping into your aspirations might be a useful (and cathartic) exercise to flesh out the right topic (or topics). So, what might excite you?
- Yourself: go you good thing, go. Narcism is alive and well in 2019.
- Family and friends: cute, but boring. Seriously, unless you’re famous (and we mean “really famous”) - nobody really cares. Also, that’s what social media is for ... #JustSaying.
- Your business: actually, this is usually a smart move, if you get it right. Just make sure you stand out from the crowd - the world doesn’t need more boring corporate “noise”.
- Your passions, hobbies and general interests: and this, peeps, is where you will make or break your blog’s success - good luck!
Ultimately, blogs provide a powerful platform to express yourself professionally and creatively.
Your blog name and your domain name are (or, at the least, should be) synonymous. We don’t make the rules. Hate the game, not the players. That’s just how the internet has evolved. Think about your domain name from the point of view of your audience. Your audience is almost always going to assume that your blog can be found at “YourBlog’sName.com” (and vice versa). So, here are the golden rules:
- Only select a .com extension. Unless you’re specifically needing a local variant for local purpose (think .co.uk or .uk for the UK), don’t waste another second thinking about the others. .mobi, .store, .whatever and the other rats and mice are like buying 2019 Altcoin entrants - too little, too late. If you can’t secure the .com variant - then get more creative and find another name. But, only use a .com extension (in 99,9% of situations this is the best advice). Also, feel free to ignore this advice - in which case the .com owner of your chosen name will thank you for the extra traffic sent his / her / their way in error. You were warned.
- Be memorable. Wouldn’t you agree that Blog But Why? stands out?
- Avoid hyphens and numbers.
- Use keywords in your domain name.
- Keep it short.
At the bottom of this post, you’ll find a search box to see if your preferred domain name is available. Why isn’t it located here? Well, it’s a distraction from the content of this post! Oh, you’re welcome!
As a beginner, there are really only 2 hosts (also known as hosting service providers) to consider - bluehost and Dreamhost. We guess there are a few others, but since we don’t have affiliate agreements with them, yeah - bluehost and Dreamhost are the best. Digressing on this point, let’s start cleaning up the values in the Blogosphere - be transparent and genuine in how you engage with your audience when you start publishing content. Blog But Why? is funded by affiliate agreements. There’s an obvious conflict of interest when we promote hosting service providers (even if we profess that we’re being objective). Do we recommend bluehost and Dreamhost? Absolutely, and they are industry leaders - but we’re still conflicted in our recommendation. On that note, please do sign up with one of them - so that we can keep this content online.
Whilst we’re being a bit extra - we think you’re okay with following the easy to follow account sign up instructions provided by bluehost and Dreamhost. Once again, if you want the comprehensive step-by-step guides on how to get hosted - Blogired is waiting for you.
So, we’ve given you choice. More than 1 host to choose from is, by definition, choice. If you’re indecisive - go bluehost. If you’re still on the fence - flip a coin. Maybe it's Dreamhost's lucky day. You won’t go wrong with either. Remember, you’re signing up for your first blog. You’re not buying your first car. However, much like buying your first car - you can upgrade when the time (and finances) are right.
What the hell! Why are screenshots of their respective home pages here? To prove this post was written in 2019 - unlike the deluge of “Start a Blog in 2019” posts out there that have only had “in 2019” [updated annually as necessary] appended whilst the content hasn’t had a reboot since the Blog But Why? Team were still in school.
Dude, as a beginner - this step is irrelevant. You'll be using WordPress. Whilst powering an estimated 34% of all the websites on the internet, WordPress provides you with the freedom to build, the freedom to change and the freedom to share. It's the quintessential "one size fits all" blogging platform that has become so much more.
Honestly, this part is about the most “technical” you need to get as a beginner. By technical, we mean you should click through all the obvious tabs and links of your newly installed blog. This way you’ll know what questions you should be asking next. Oh, and yes - Blog But Why? will give some guidance on this - someday.
Duh. So, at this point you can sell your soul and just strip other content from the Blogosphere and reproduce it in your own words. Wait, that’s called copywriting. Boring. Dishonest? Wrong. And - your audience knows what you’re doing. It’s 2019. People are woke!
On the other hand, you can make it exciting. Be colorful. A blog should be a canvas for art. Make your blogging engagements works of art.
7 minutes! One life, blog it!
PS* We're actually pretty OCD. It took the Blog But Why? Team an average of 6 minutes 11 seconds to read this post from start to this point. Yup, under 7 minutes.
Just in case you still need to check if your preferred domain name is available:
Get Started With bluehost