How to start a hosted WordPress site and blog

Introduction:

Due to a large interest, I will provide step by step guide on how to create a hosted WordPress site with your own domain url. I have been blogging since 2007 and cover a wide range of topics from online dating to technology. I am an engineer by trade and I enjoy helping people simplify things. Creating a free blog is easy. Free blogs can be attained at Blogspot, Tumblr, WordPress.com and many other platforms. However, the domain is not yours. You will not fully control the blog and it can be terminated or shut down without your permission.

I used my technical background to navigate the complexity of creating my own hosted blog. In total, I have about 10 blogs of which 4 of them I actively update. I started this out of my love of the topics and have converted to monetize and now receive a nice side income. You can see my disclaimer and privacy notice at the menu. I offer this guide for free. In exchange, I get a small cut from purchases made as a result of links on this page. The price you pay for the service does not change.

Most of you visit my blog or return because you find value in the content of this blog. Some of you may be steered towards interest in how to start your own blog. In this exclusive tutorial, I will show you how to create your own tech blog and monetize.

Setting Up Your Blog:

First, you need a few things to set up your blog.

  • An available domain (url)
  • Web Host
  • Platform
  • Database or storage
  • Design

Domain:

A domain is the url which is the address on the Internet for your blog. You can obtain a free one via a free blogging platform such as blogger.com, wordpress.com, tumbler.com but it will always be owned and tied to their site. For example, if you want to blog on “internetofthings”, your url may be “www.internetofthings.blogger.com”. If you want your own domain such as “www.yourowndomain.com”, then you will need to pay. I highly recommend buying your own domain. Most places will offer a low price for the first year and increase it when you renew the 2nd year. The price you will pay is nominal. Don’t think too much. The key is finding a catchy domain which is available with the right suffix. Best suffix to aim for is a “.com” domain and “.net” or “.org”. I would not recommend anything else. Recently, the Internet authority has expanded suffixes and have allowed things such as .tv, .info, and even longer ones such as .restaurant and .business! I recommend staying with .com or .net domains as they have more authority.

When creating your domain, it is best you find use a keyword relating to your blog. It will help with your SEO (search engine optimization).

In my walk through, I will use 1and1.com. There are many options to buy your domain.

1and1-domain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First, find your desired domain. 1and1 has a search bar at their site. The good thing about 1and1’s domain check tool is that it can recommend variants. You can also use tools such as http://www.domainsbot.com/ or https://instantdomainsearch.com/ to instantly see available domains based on your keyword or niche.

Web Host:

Web host is the online server where you will host your blog site. Think of it as a depository where you can use resources to save files for your website for public view. The ideal location to buy a web host is where you buy your domain. This isn’t required but it is more seamless. You can purchase your domain independent from your web host but you will need to manage the domain and integrate it to your web host.

Here are comparison between two web hosts. You can see they have packages specifically for WordPress. Below is for 1and1. You can see they have a starting package for the first year. I think the 1&1 Managed WP Plus is a good deal. For the first year, you pay $4.99/month and it jumps to $9.99/month after. It includes 5 wordpress projects, 250GB storage (you won’t need that much..), unlimited visitors (not sure why they would count that), and one domain. I tried to check out and they require you to pay the full 12 months up front which comes out to – $59.88. Not bad at all.

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Below is the current managed WordPress package at HostGator, another respected Web hosting company. They don’t offer free domain and the price listed below is if you pay 3 years up front! Seems a bit bait and switch. the standard plan gives you 2 sites and limits to 200k visits per month. It is a lot of visitors and if you reach that level, you can simply upgrade your package as you should making enough money to cover.

hostgator

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Platform:

Next, you need to decide on your platform. Similar to the above, you can base your blog on a free blogging platform. Actually, most platforms are free even if you buy and host your own blog. An extremely popular blogging platform is WordPress. You can read all about it at WordPress.org. Notice the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. WordPress.com is the commercial arm of WordPress. You can host your personal blog from the wordpress.com domain and subscribe to added services that cost money. WordPress.org is the open source blogging platform which is free and have an amazing support community. Aside from WordPress, there is also Drupal and Juumla which are also free blogging platforms. I highly recommend using WordPress as your platform for your hosted blog.

Database and Storage:

All blogs need some sort of database in order for the blogging platform to function. WordPress must have read / write capability to an SQL database as well as support with PHP. As of today, Oct 2016, PHP 5.5 and lower is no longer supported by the PHP Community. You should use at the minimum, PHP 5.6 or PHP 7.0 which is supported until Dec of 2018. It’s good to ensure you have the latest SQL database available from your.

Install:

There are two ways to install your blog, the easy way and the hard way. Web hosts are catching on to the market where non-technical people may be interested in hosted blogs. 1and1 has ‘click to install’ tools which allow you to set everything up with a click of a button. After signing up for Managed Word Press Web Host plan, you can go through the steps in filling out the details you need. Make sure you set it up as private registration. Setting is up as private registration will display 1and1 as the host and owner of the site instead of your real name and contact details.

You can also install wordpress without the managed WP package. Just purchase one of the web hosting service. Then follow the steps. Log into your account.1and1.com and go to ‘My Products’. Under there, go to ‘Home’ and you will see “1&1 App Center”. You will find WordPress there. Give your website a title. Don’t need to think too much, you can change this later.

1and1-menu

 

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Next, enter a username / password. Save this! The username may be used as ‘author’ in certain WordPress themes. Name it wisely. I would avoid using ‘admin’ or ‘administrator’ as the username as most default WP sites use these. Use Keepass or some password management tool to generate a complex password. One which would be difficult to break or hack.

1and1-wordpress-password

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You will be prompted to purchase the managed plan which is $2.99 a month or free. Click free. If you purchased the managed wp plan, then this should be irrelevant.

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Then finally, you assign your WordPress site to the domain you purchased. It may take up to 2-6 hours for the domain to be ready after you initially register for it.

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You will get a display saying that your website is ready to use.

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Log into the username / password you created early. That’s it! Go to – https://codex.wordpress.org/Working_with_WordPress for tips on how to get started.

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Next, I will put tips on how to choose a niche and sign up for affiliates. Please subscribe!