What do you name your blog?

DomainTipsBefore you do anything, figure out a name! You want something that can be used as both the name of the site and the URL if possible. Here are a few key notes to consider when deciding on your website name and URL.

1. Make sure it's easy to pronounce, read and type. This is very important because you want something people can hear, remember and type into their browser later!

2. Try to avoid abbreviations that can be misunderstood or have too many ways to be spelled.

3. Avoid foreign languages, terms and more that are not common for your target audience

For domain purchases I typically recommend GoDaddy.com as they are rather cheap to register a domain with and often run specials and discounts.

(Note: I do NOT recommend them for hosting services, you can buy your domain there and redirect it to a better host for your site)

Web Hosting

How to set up your domain

When you visit GoDaddy.com (or whatever domain registrar you choose) you will simply follow the registration process on their homepage, below I am going to use GoDaddy as an example.

Capture

Step 1: Search for the domain you want to register, they will tell you if it's available or not. I HIGHLY recommend choosing a domain with a .com as your main and ALSO purchasing at least the .net option just for keepsakes.

GoDaddy Privacy

Step 2: Follow the checkout process once you've added your domain(s) to your cart, during that process they may try to sell you fifty million add ons. Most are not necessary but one I may recommend is Privacy. Pay to have your personal register info private from others (address, etc)

Step 3: Finalize checkout, you may be offered hosting. I would not personally recommend them to host your site but it's all up to you.

Choose a host for your blog

Your hosting is the core of your website, if your host goes down so does your site and so does your income! I personally recommend a few different options, they range from $3.95/month and up depending on what you’re looking for.
Bluehost This is one of the cheaper options that is pretty reliable for the price starting at just $5.95/month and 24hr customer service by phone or chat.

>>>>>>>
SiteGround Siteground is great for hosting your website and their customer service is top notch, you can start as little as $3.95 per month with one website and upgrade as needed in the future!

>>>>>>>


Whatever host you choose to go with you will need to register your domain URL with that account so it knows what site to connect with.



Connecting your domain to the host

If you purchased your domain one place and hosting in another you still need to connect the dots, this one is pretty simple (for most) by just updating the nameservers in your GoDaddy account. Many host send out a welcome email that list your login information along with your nameserver information, if you did not receive this you can check your cpanel for nameserver info. or contact the host to find it out.



To access your domain settings simply log in to your account, click on My Domains and select the domain you want to edit. It will have an option to update nameservers, this is where you will insert the nameservers of your host (if you did not receive them in a welcome email you can contact your host for yours). This process can take up to 48hrs to propagate so give it some time.

How to setup Wordpress

There is one main method I recommend when starting your own blog or website which is self hosted wordpress.org. And you may say "well, Blogger.com is FREE!" It is free.. but do you know what comes with free hosting? The uncertainty if your site will be there tomorrow, lack of control over your website and more. I have seen more than one site get shut down by blogger with no warning due to traffic or content. Once it's gone it's gone and it's very rare that you get it back!

Once your hosting is set up the first thing you need to do is install Wordpress. How do you install Wordpress? Most hosts have a simple add on for quick installs and most include Wordpress. Simple check your cPanel through your account for a Wordpress icon and run the installer.

script

If you registered your domain in the same place you set up hosting you should be able to automatically login and start blogging, however, if you registered your domain with a company like GoDaddy but set up hosting elsewhere you still have an extra step to make which is updating your domain's nameservers. You can find those instructions above.

If you are with a host who requires manual installation this is going to be a few extra steps in the process, you can find directions on how to manually install Wordpress here. If you are new to the blog world this may be a process you're not comfortable doing, if not you can find a host who offers easy install or feel free to email us for assistance.  

Design Your Blog

There are many themes out there to choose from when you work with Wordpress, but there is only one I personally recommend which is Genesis Framework. Genesis Framework is one of the top notch themes out there to use and they consistently update their features and security to keep your site up to date. You can purchase the base framework for $60 and any child theme for $40+. Why do you need both? Genesis framework is just that, the framework, each update of the theme effects this core file so you do not want your design going there. This is why I recommend using a child theme along with it, your design is never effected and you can update with ease.


You can check out the Genesis Child Themes offered here at Pixel Me Designs for just $40! All theme's have extra features to fully customize your site along with a mobile friendly design so your readers can view and read your site with ease.



If you're looking for a fully customized design you can also check out our blog design packages here! We offer budget friendly packages and fully customized packages so your site stands out from the crowd with a unique and user friendly layout.