WordPress is a great tool that enables any budding publisher to establish a professional blog. The prospect of learning how to set up a WordPress blog can be daunting but is a straightforward process that will equip you with many digital skills.
Why use WordPress?
There are many free blogging and CMS tools available to use. I recommend WordPress for a number of reasons
- WordPress is free
- WordPress is easy to use
- WordPress is highly customisable
- WordPress is evolving every day
- WordPress is very well supported
Why host WordPress rather than use WordPress.com?
Hosting your own WordPress blog gives you more freedom to customise the product by adding more plugins and enhancements. This gives you more independence and is also a great way to learn a little about how hosting works.
How to set up a WordPress blog?
Follow the following steps to learn how to set up a WordPress blog.
- Research your marketplace – Use the Google Keyword Suggestion Tool to find out what your audience is searching for in Google. This will give you great ideas for blog content and provide you with some suggestions for exact match domain names that may be available.
- Register your own domain name – There are many ways to get cheap domain names. Get a domain with a suffix that is relevant to your target audience (for example a .uk domain for the UK market) and try and get an exact match domain name (a domain name that exactly matches a phrase you want to rank for like cheaphotelsinwales.co.uk). If no exact match domain names are available look for sites that sell pre owned domains.
- Get some web hosting – To have your own site you need your own hosting. Site5.com is a great place to start – you can get reliable blog hosting in your own country for as little as $4.95 per month.
- Install WordPress – Once your hosting is set up at your domain name you can install WordPress. This is easy. Assuming you have Site5 hosting you navigate to SiteAdmin, click Web Apps on the left hand side then select Fantastico. Within Fantastico select WordPress and follow the three easy steps by completing the form fields. This should install WordPress in your domain.
Setting Up WordPress
You have nearly learned how to set up a WordPress blog. To complete the final stages in the process you need to login to your admin panel at yourdomain.com/wp-admin with the username and password you selected in the previous step. Once logged in you need to complete 2 tasks:
- Add www to the WordPress URL – Click the settings tab in the right hand side menu. Add a www in the correct place in the field ‘WordPress address (URL)’. Do the same in the field ‘Site address (URL)’. Click save changes.
- SEO Friendly WordPress URL – Change WordPress URL’s to make them search engine friendly: From setings click permalinks on the right. Select the ‘Custom Structure’ Option and change it to /%category%/%postname%/%post_id%/
Adding Great Content
If you are still interested in learning how to set up a WordPress blog there is only one final step. This is the most difficult and time consuming: Adding great content.