Much after my first two blog posts on WordPress.com, I thought I should create my own blog with my own domain. However many questions popped up
- Will I be able to devote time to it?
- What will I write about?
- Will anyone ever read it?
- What am I trying to achieve?
Yes it’s going to be challenging to make sure I can post good content on this blog. I definitely don’t want to make it like a Twitter feed where I am just posting random rants and stuff that might not be helpful to anyone. Nevertheless I decided that it’s worth a shot. Even if a handful of people find my blog useful, I would be happy.
This particular blog post is just something I thought might be useful to others who want to start their own blog. I know there are plenty of websites out there which can help you get started(way better than what I am writing here). Most might say get WordPress.org and go for self hosting. I recommend that, but it is not as easy as they say. Here are just some of a few things you need to lookout for.
A blogging platform
Unless you really have time to devote to your blog, I would say go for WordPress. I personally tried Ghost.org as well but it was just a little more effort than I wanted to put in. I loved the fact that the editor was in Markdown and to write content and see it render immediately was a better feeling than clicking a Preview button in WordPress.org (I know there might be a plugin for this somewhere). Which brings me to my most important reason why I would choose WordPress. It has tons of users who create tutorials and videos. If you are starting up, then this is really helpful.
I think this is the most painful one once you finish deciding which platform you will use. Finding reliable hosting is a pain if you start hearing all the horror stories. Don’t google – best web hosting sites. A lot of sites are being paid quite well to promote best hosting websites. Instead go to hosting forums to find out more. Examples of these are Webhosting Talk or ReviewHell. Make a list of providers you think you want to do business with and then search for them. Don’t judge providers by negative comments only. It’s important to figure out if that applies to your website or not. There are different types of hosting, shared hosting being the cheapest where one server can have hundreds of websites all running optimally. You want to choose this for a personal website or a blog. It’s always better to start on a monthly plan and then sign up for longer commitments.
If you do go for hosting instead of using WordPress.com or Blogger or Ghost(Pro), buy a domain name. It’s fairly simple. You should google this part in case you are new to it.
Depending on which hosting provider you choose, you should have 1-Click installers for most major platforms including but not limited to WordPress, Ghost, Weebly etc with enough documentation on how to install.
It’s fairly simple to start a blog. It’s quite difficult to keep it running and updating it regularly with content which will be helpful. I would recommend first reading a bit from bloggers ( I read a lot of blogs to start blogs). I personally read a lot of blogs and I am hoping I can be good at writing one too. There are a lot of things to consider like monetizing your blog if it gets successful. However, its important to take baby steps and in my opinion Content is King if you want a great blog.