I’ve been trying to create my own blog for so long but suddenly feel encouraged because what the fuck, this is not so freaking complicated. The only constraint all this time has been “Oh… what do I have to say? What is my blog going to talk about?” Today I don’t care. I’ve just created a blog, and that might be good enough topic for some people to start reading this. If I can do it, and many other random people can… you sure can. I’m going to explain how I created it, for dummies, step by step. Everyone can create a blog in less than 30 minutes, you will see.
Here’s my promise:
- You will be able to create your own blog with your domain name, same way I created this one (raulgo.com). Totally for beginners, if you are the fucking Cristiano Ronaldo of the blogs I don’t know what the hell are you doing reading this, just leave this page.
- No programming skills required, you just have to understand some basic concepts that I will try to explain (what I call “ingredients” below). If you get lost just write a comment on this post and I will get so excited because this is my first blog post too! So, I promise to help you with everything I can.
- You will not get rich with this shit, we are going to create a plain blog, like this one, no cool design, no fireworks, no bullshit. If I’m not making money with this blog there’s no point for me trying to pretend that I can teach you how to make money with a shitty blog. But I promise that if some day I make some money (even if it is a single buck) with this blog, I will teach you how I made it.
- I will try to improve the look and feel in the future, and I will explain you how I did it in further posts. So, if you are reading this post and see that the blog looks nothing like the screenshots, then keep reading further posts if you want to know how I did it.
- This is going to cost you nothing, unless you want your blog under a cool domain name like www.raulgo.com, then you will have to pay around 12 bucks a year to a domain name registrar.
Basic ingredients to create a blog:
If you want to create a blog here’s what you need:
- Motivation (thanks Sergi from jugodelavida.com)
- Domain name
Initially I wrote this post stating that we need 3 ingredients to create a blog (hosting, domain name and CMS) but 2 days later I received this comment from Sergi focusing on the importance of having a motivation. This is the emotional part of creating a blog, and it is even more important than the rest. Before you create a blog you need to be able to respond the “Why” question. There are as many answers to this question as people in the world. Everyone can have a very different objective, your goal might be to sell your product / service, to teach about something you are good at, to make money, to create a community with similar interests, to make your resume look nice… There’s no “wrong” answer, but there has to be an answer to keep yourself engaged and eventually reach your goal.
Why are you doing this? Answering and remembering this will help you to keep going or just quit if it doesn’t make sense anymore. Sergi.
In a few words, that is the place where your files are going to live. Like any document needs a space in your hard drive, a blog also needs some space to get stored. That is what hosting basically is. If you want a broader definition just google it. Or click here for the Wikipedia definition.
Good news is that it is easy to find free hosting companies, I’ve been doing some research and x10hosting is the one I’m using for this blog, I’ve also tried 000webhost in the past and is good too. This is what I’ve got when I created my account with x10hosting:
3. Domain name
The domain name is what commonly we call the web address. That is simply a name for you website. I would say it is equivalent to the plate numbers (in USA), you can keep the default plate number (sometimes difficult to remember) or you can just pay a few bucks to buy a cool one that you like and is easy to remember. Both have the same function and both will be linked to your car, you don’t necessarily need to spend money in a cool plate, but it’s nice to have.
If you see the screenshot above after the hosting account creation, you will see that it says Your Domain: raul.x10host.com. That means that my address by default will be this one, unless I want to buy something nicer (and pay for it).
Ok, let’s say we want raulgo.com instead. In my case, I bought it from a Spanish website (dondominio) because I already have some other domains there and it is easier to have all in the same place, but there are a lot of places where you can buy a domain name. One of the most known might be GoDaddy.
Next thing is to link your new domain with your hosting. to do this we need to configure it in both sides.
Starting with your hosting company. Make sure you indicate the domain name you bought, and pay attention to the DNS name servers they tell you. Here’s how your x10hosting has to look like:
Now it is time to configure the domain name. Make sure it points to the right DNS. It is very simple, in my case, this is how my dondominio DNS configutation page looks like:
That should be enough to have your cool name point your hosting.
CMS stands for Content Management System, that means a platform that will do all the programming related stuff for you. Of course you can complicate and customize it as much as you want with your programming skills, but let’s assume we have no idea about that. I’m sure you’ve heard from Word Press. Word Press (WP from now) is one of the greatest CMS for blog creation (and many other stuff).
There’s 2 ways to create your blog with WP, hosted WordPress.org (you have to look for the hosting and domain) vs. free WordPress.com (don’t need to care about hosting, much faster but less flexible). There’s a good comparison here.
We are going to go for the hosted WP option. x10hosting allows you to easily install all kinds of CMS, one of them is the latest version of WP. Just go to “my websites” tab and choose this options:
Once WP is installed, you are ready to access your WP backend, located at yourdomain.com/wp-admin and begin creating a simple post.
That’s it, now you know how to create a blog, if you don’t do it is because you don’t want!
Since this is my first post ever, and my English skills are still not awesome, I might have skipped something unconsciously. Please, let me know and I promise to help in less than 24h!
What´s next? One day, hopefully soon, I will write another post talking about the next steps:
- Install some basic plugins to your WordPress.
- Track your site with Google Analytics.
- Link your site with Google Search Console (google webmaster tools).
- Install another Theme to make it look nicer.
Here’s how the blog looks like so far:
- Plain blog
- Twenty fifteen theme