This post may contain affiliate links. Please refer to my full disclosure for more information.
Are you looking to launch your own blog this year and want to start off on the right foot?
I hear you, so read on and learn to start a self-hosted blog in 2019 with these steps.
Step 1: Pick your niche or decide on the topic you want to blog about.
You are free to choose the topics you want to talk about on your blog if you are blogging as a hobby. But if you want to make money online blogging you should consider these things when picking a niche:
1. Your passion- What do you like to talk about? What are the topics you are interested in? Your passions and interests are important when it comes to choosing your niche. Why? because if not, chances are you will lose interest in it easily and you will run out of topics to talk to and share with your readers.
2. Know-how or knowledge on the topic- You don’t need to be an expert to start a blog. However, be knowledgeable on the topic you are blogging about, and research carefully. You can’t give what you don’t have the same thing as you can’t share what you don’t know. Provide your readers with informative and entertaining articles.
3. Profitability- Blogging can be a fun way to express oneself. If you are thinking to make money blogging, in the long run, you should consider finding a profitable blogging niche. Do market research, make sure you have a big market for your topic if you are planning to monetize your blog in the not too distant future.
Here are some of the profitable blog niches you might want to start in 2019:
- Health and Fitness
- Personal Finance/ Frugal Living
Step 2: Choose a domain name.
Domain what? A domain name is simply your website name. It is the address where your readers can find your website on the internet.
For example, my domain name is preciousgracegan.com and you can easily find my website on the internet by simply typing my domain name on search engines.
When brainstorming your domain name you should also consider the following points:
1. Identify your business purpose. Do you want to build your personal brand? Otherwise, you want to build a separate brand apart from yourself, consider picking a domain name related to your niche.
2. Make your domain name short, avoid using hyphens, numbers and double letters to avoid mistyping.
3. Use broad keywords. For example, your blog is all about health and fitness you can opt to use the keywords health or fitness and incorporate those in your domain name.
There are hundreds of domain extensions you can choose from. Here are the most common ones to consider:
.com, .org, .net, .co, .us
When registering your domain name you can choose whether to bundle it with your hosting plan or register it to the domain registrars like Namecheap or GoDaddy. Some web hosting companies also offer a free domain name as part of their hosting services.
Step 3: Find a host.
What is a host? Web hosting is the service that provides server space for your files and makes your website accessible on the internet around the world.
Without these two (domain name and web hosting) your site won’t be visible online. When buying a hosting there are plenty of web hosting companies you can choose from.
I personally use and recommend SiteGround. It has exceptional customer service, speed and security which are some of the top things to consider when choosing a web hosting provider. SiteGround also provides free SSL Certificate and meets the GDPR requirements.
Step 4: Choose a blogging platform.
When starting a blog you must first identify your purpose. Whether you want a blog to serve as your creative outlet for your passion or otherwise you want to make money out of it.
If you are serious about blogging don’t use free platforms. This is important when choosing a blogging platform. There are free platforms like Blogger.com or WordPress.com but heed my advice don’t go with the free platform services for the following reasons.
1. You don’t have full control over your blog. Truth be told, you don’t have the final say on your blog because you are using free services.
2. Your web address will look like yourblog.blogspot.com or yourblog.wordpress.com If you want to be taken seriously as the authority on your niche you wouldn’t want your web address to be looking like that.
3. You can lose everything, your blog could be shut down anytime for any reasons. I’m sure you don’t want to wake up one morning and found out that your blog has completely vanished. All your hard works disappear into thin air.
4. Free platforms limit your monetization potentials as you are only allowed limited ways to monetize your free website. In most cases, you will eventually need to pay for upgrades to maximize the use of these platforms.
I run this blog on WordPress.org (self-hosted) It’s different from the free platform WordPress.com. Self-hosted platforms might cost more, but who doesn’t make an initial start-up cost when it comes to business?
Now that you have the initial steps set up, you can now proceed customizing your site, installing essential plugins, creating content, building your readership and finally monetizing your blog and reaping the fruits of your labor.