How to Create a Blog With WordPress (Tutorial)
Do you prefer to learn by video? There's a video tutorial below you can watch that will show you how to create your WordPress blog very easily. It's pretty comprehensive and you will learn a lot in a very short time.
Blogs are a kind of website.
The content is usually organized by date and category with the most recent post/content displaying first.
Blogs also have comments by default, but you can disable them quite easily if you use WordPress.
I'll show you how to get started in the tutorial below.
Setting Up a Blog
Next, you simply install the WordPress script on your domain from the control panel and you're ready to go!
Looking for a free blog?
Even though a site like Blogger is free and makes setup a snap, you don't actually own the content or the site because it's hosted on Blogger's domain.
I never, ever recommend free hosted sites. I think they look cheap, lack professionalism and often times people don't take your site seriously.
Also, your site could be removed for any reason at any time because you don't technically own anything. You're renting the space like you would be renting an apartment.
Is this what you want for your future site or perhaps a business?
Also, it's easy for free sites to be taken away from you. If someone wants to sabotage you, they can report your site and get it taken down with little problem. It has happened to many people before.
WordPress or Blogger?
As I've already noted, I don't endorse free hosting so that's why I would choose WordPress in an instant.
Blogger is often a popular choice among newbies because it's free. However, WordPress is so much more robust and has thousands of free plugins to make it more functional.
It's always best to use a paid hosting account.
WordPress is not hard to master with some guidance, so make sure you check out my tutorial video below and you'll see just how easy it is to create your blog!
I used Blogger for about a year when I first started blogging, but I felt as if I outgrew it. I noticed that WordPress had many more templates, and when I learned about the plugins that were available that would allow me to do so many different things with my website, it was a no-brainer.
WordPress is open source. That means developers have access to the source code so they can modify it. This makes the possibilities endless for what you can do with a WordPress website.
If you were a Blogger user, it may take you some time to get used to the WordPress format, but trust me. It's definitely worth it.
WordPress Blog Hosting
You simply login to your hosting account and follow the instructions for launching your WordPress blog. It literally takes minutes.
* Choose the Deluxe Plan to host unlimited domains/sites under one account.
After your account is setup, go to yourdomain.com/wp-admin and you will be presented with the login screen to start creating your site.
Once you login, simply go to Appearance >> Themes, choose, install and activate a theme and you're ready to launch your site! Be sure to check out my WordPress tutorial video below for some basic instructions on how to get started.
If you use WebsitePalace.com to make and host your WordPress site, you will get my WordPress Starter Guide eBook - the complete guide to learning how to use WordPress and make money from your site. You'll find the free download on the confirmation page after you order.
The above video was for WordPress 3.4. In 2013 I made an updated video for version 3.5 and I show you how to edit the default Twenty Twelve theme.
There isn't really much difference between 3.4 and 3.5. The photo gallery is the biggest upgrade, which I highlight in the video below.
Did you like the videos? You may want to check out my WP Starter Guide. There are tons of tips included on how to make money and drive traffic to your WordPress site. Remember, all Website Palace customers get this ebook for free.
Create a Blogging Test Platform
If you want to test your site locally on your Windows computer, download a free software program called InstantWP. This is one of the best inventions for WordPress because you don't have to do everything live and pray it looks right.
You can screw up all you want and no one will know but you! :-) Also, this program installs right inside any folder or flash drive. So you can easily take your local copy of WordPress with you and work on any computer.
I talked a bit about this in the WordPress tutorial video above, but here's some more details...
Free vs. Paid WordPress Themes
As you may know by now from the WordPress video tutorial, there are thousands of free WordPress themes at your disposal from the admin panel.
However, I would strongly recommend using a premium theme because of the support offered.
About every few months, WordPress updates its software. That means your current theme may not be completely compatible anymore.
So if you're using a free theme, often times the developer won't support it anymore and you're stuck with a broken site.
However, if you use a premium theme like I use on my blog (Genesis), then you know that you will have the support when there are any updates or problems. Just something to think about as you create your site.
Also, premium themes have a lot more features and easier ways to customize the design without having to tinker with much code.
Do you notice a theme here? I'm not a fan of free. I think it always comes with a price in the end. I've had too many bad experiences when it comes to free websites in the past.
Content Organization on Blogs
Having your visitors view/sort your content by date and category may not be the optimal solution for every kind of site because the older content will get buried over time.
Have you ever visited a blog and had trouble finding what you're looking for because of the content organization?
That is because some people only use the default navigation for WordPress. You don't have to organize everything by category and date if you don't want to. In fact, that doesn't make sense for some kinds of sites.
Blogs are awesome for highlighting new content, but if you don't take the time to organize your content effectively, your important information can get buried.
When You Need a Traditional Blog
If you plan on creating the kind of website where you're just highlighting newsworthy information on a very specific niche, then a traditional blog format is ideal.
This site features the latest and greatest info about technology. So it makes sense to just sort the content by category and date because people coming there just want the most recent information.
Also, if they are interested in a certain kind of content, they can browse by category (i.e. Gadgets, Social, Startups, etc.)
If you plan on writing a lot of newsworthy content on a certain topic then a standard blog is perfect for this.
However, if you are creating a tutorial site where a static layout is more appropriate (like this one) then you may want to either consider a static site or make your WordPress site more static by using WordPress menus, Pages, etc.
WordPress allows you to create posts and pages. Posts (dynamic) automatically show up on the homepage with the newest on top and oldest at the bottom. As you upload more content, the older content eventually gets pushed off the page.
The key is to use the WordPress menu function to link to static pages instead of categories with dated content organized from the newest to oldest.
Make The Best of Both Worlds
For most websites, the hybrid approach is what you should aim for. In other words, you'll want to use both static and dynamic content.
Here's what I mean. On my hair site, you'll see that the top menu links to some pages that are always the same (static). The Sitemap link is a static page.
However, if you click the "Hairstyles" link, you'll see that it links to dynamic content -- in other words, my most recent posts on transitioning and natural hairstyles.
So I'm using both static and dynamic content. That's the beauty of WordPress, it lets you do both! And for most websites, this is the ideal approach.
I discuss how to do this in the video near the bottom of the page and in my WordPress tutorial.
How I Created My Blog Design
I am often asked about the design on my WordPress blog. I bought a premium theme called Genesis. Keep in mind, you don't have to buy a theme, as WordPress comes with thousands of free ones you can install.
But as I've already mentioned, there are many advantages to using a paid theme...
- Better customer support (many free themes don't have any at all)
- Lifetime upgrades
- More design customizations
- Bug fixes
- Stay compatible with the latest version of WordPress (as WordPress evolves, you want to make sure your theme continues to function properly)
Plus, Genesis comes with a free, getting started guide. So if you're new to creating a blog and/or the Genesis theme family, this will come in handy as you get started.
You Can Make Your Own WordPress Theme
Did you know you can build your own theme without knowing any PHP or CSS at all? Thanks to cool programs like Artisteer, you can actually build a theme using their wizard. Learn more about creating a theme with Artisteer here.
Start Your Blog Today!
If you've decided to create a WordPress site, you can get very low cost hosting at Website Palace. Just sign up and begin your site today!
Choose the Deluxe Plan and host unlimited domains/websites under one account!
If you've decided to go with a static website instead, you can just choose a regular web hosting platform and use the free templates that I provide on the order confirmation page. Or you can download free templates from the web, use Artisteer, Dreamweaver, etc.
Don't forget to register your own domain name!
Need More Help?
FAQ's on Creating a Website or Blog
How to Change Your WordPress Header
Create and Design a Blog With the Genesis Lifestyle Theme
Increase Traffic to Your Blog
Edit and Customize Your WordPress Header
Read My Review on the WooTheme WordPress Theme
How I Doubled my Blog Traffic in 2 Months
Web Design Tips and Tutorials
If you liked this, please share. Thanks!