Start a Blog Checklist
Ready to start a blog? You’ve come to the right place! Here’s a blog startup checklist to help you get started off on the right foot.
Related Blog Post: How to Start a Blog and Make Money
This post will guide you through the basics of starting a blog.
Don’t forget to grab the blog startup checklist at the bottom of this post!
Common Questions When You Start a Blog
What is the best blog startup platform?
You should use a self-hosted WordPress platform. Siteground offers some really great deals on hosting. They are not the cheapest I have seen, but they are definitely the best. I have used 3 other hosting platforms, and no one comes close to Siteground’s speed and customer service. I will talk more about Siteground later.
How can you start a blog for free?
WordPress.com is a place where a lot of people start free blogs. In fact, that is where I started my first blog. However, if you are looking to make money on your blog, WordPress.com has limitations. For example, you cannot use ads on their platform, and it’s harder to sell your own products on their platform as well.
Start a Blog Checklist
Find a Niche
The first thing you need to do when you are starting a blog, is to figure out what your niche is.
Name Your Blog
Coming up with your blog name can be fun! Once you have your niche decided, you may already have a catchy name in mind. In case you don’t here’s a trick to find a great blog name.
Use power words in your blog name. I use this list of 401+ Power Words for my blog headlines. (I also used it to find my blog name… shhh!!!)
Combine a power word with a noun or of your choice. Something related to your niche. You could even pair it with your name. (Ex. Effortless Momma, Simple Kate, Simply Lovely Life.)
If it doesn’t sound right: Try synonyms of those words.
Tip: Don’t forget to google search your name to make sure you won’t be taking someone else’s blog name!
You want to be unique!
Secure a Domain
You can find a domain on GoDaddy or 1&1. Or you can purchase a domain from the hosting company of your choice to make things a little more simple.
For a beginner, I would suggest purchasing your domain and hosting from the same place to keep things as simple and straight forward as possible. (Less techy stuff to deal with!)
SiteGround: This is my #1 choice, and who I currently use for my blogs. I have tried switching because of “better prices.” That was a huge mistake. I came back to Siteground because the speed and customer service is unbeatable!
Bluehost: They have slightly cheaper rates than Siteground for their starter package.
Hostgator: Hostgator is #3 on my list because while they do have decent speeds and prices… their customer service is not the greatest.
Start a Blog by Signing up Using Siteground
Step #1 Choose a Plan
- StartUp: Okay for starting out.
- GrowBig: This is the best value!
- GoGeek: You won’t need this one yet.
Step #2 Choose a Domain
- You can register a new domain through them.
- Buy a domain from a place such as GoDaddy first and enter it here.
Step #3 Complete Your Purchase
- Choose your time period. 12 months, 24 months, 36 months. Remember that this is the intro price. Choosing a longer term will be the best value!
- Complete the order and you are done.
Install a Theme
I like the themes from Bluchic. They have some really great feminine options. And, each theme comes along with instructions for getting it all set up! My blog Mom. Wife. Homeschool Life uses Isabelle by Bluchic.
There are a ton of great free options, too. The Astra theme is a really good customizable free theme.
Pick Brand Colors
Here’s the best way to pick brand colors.
- Go to Pinterest and search color palettes.
- Find one that you like.
- Save the image.
- Go to Color.Adobe.com
- Click Extract From Image
- Upload your image
- Select your mood on the lefthand side.
- Click back on Color Wheel
- Write down the hex numbers. (They will look like this: #fghijkl)
Create a Logo
Create a logo for your blog using Canva. There are free templates on Canva or you can get something a little more custom by using one of my Canva templates. >>> Canva Logo Templates.
So, now that you have your basic blog elements taken care of, it’s time to start thinking about what you will write about. Make a list of your ideas.
Here’s how to find content ideas:
- Look in Facebook groups in your niche.
- Forums in your niche.
- Use Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest and enter your keyword ideas. (This is my favorite go-to keyword tool! Bookmark it! It’s a must-have blogging tool.)
- Pinterest! See what people are posting in your niche, and what people are searching for.
Create and Publish 5-10 Blog Posts
After you’ve got a pretty good idea of what you want to write about, get to writing those posts!
Longer posts are best for getting ranked on Google. Posts should be somewhere between 600-1000 words. (or more if you can.)
Tip: Make sure you give your posts click-worthy (not click-bait) headlines! Use those Power Words!
Publish Your Blog
You can publish your blog after you get the first post up, or you can wait until you have 5 posts. That’s up to you.
I suggest just going for it and publishing your blog with 1 or 2 posts. Then you can start promoting your posts after you have 5-10 up.
Share Your Content
Share your content like crazy! On social media and especially Pinterest.
Pinterest is the best way to get free traffic to your blog. Just make sure you have good clear pin images.
Grab these free pin templates to get you started creating great pins for Pinterest.
Splurge on a great Blogging Course After you Start a Blog
After I had been blogging for a couple of months, I invested in a good blogging course. It was the best decision I have ever made. I wish I would’ve done it sooner.
My traffic skyrocketed, my understanding of how to promote my blog had grown immensely, and I felt confident in what I was doing. Those things are worth every penny spent!
Here are some blog course suggestions. Take a look and see which ones look like a good fit. There are free options, too.
This is my course that will get you headed in the right direction if your goal is to make money from blogging!
Blogging Basics is my free intro to blogging course.
The Genius Blogger’s Toolkit is the best thing I have ever invested in for my blog. You get so many courses, eBooks, and other blogging tools and resources that are invaluable.
Get your Free Start a Blog Checklist
Grab your free Checklist here. >>> Free Blog Startup Checklist