When it comes to blogging, there is no better tool than WordPress. Starting a WordPress blog seems like an intimidating task if you’re new to this space, but the entire process is very easy and quick for beginners. Over 70% of the websites are powered by WordPress. By far, WordPress has become the most popular content management system with extremely powerful and completely customizable traits.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is one of the most widely used blogging platforms. It is an open-source content management system licensed under GPLv2. This licensing allows anyone to improve and modify the software for free. It is a tool that organizes the whole process of creating, storing and presenting your content in an optimal way.
Within WordPress’s massive ecosystem of plugins and themes, it offers the accessibility to run any type of website. No matter if it’s a simple business site, e-commerce store, portfolio site, fitness site, directory site or photosites, WordPress has the ability to handle all these sites with great efficiency. With its advanced analytics, it is easy to include new features in the site with the help of various free plugins. In a nutshell, WordPress is an excellent website platform with the easiest to use CMS.
Elements of a WordPress Blog
- Site Elements- Pages, Posts, Media, Comments
- Design Elements- Site Identity, Menu, Widgets, Homepage Settings, Themes.
- Adding New Features- Plugins (Examples of new features, user registrations, creating a forum, advanced features like job posting etc)
- General Settings- Reading, Writing, Discussions, Users etc.
All of these elements make a WordPress an excellent choice to create your free blog of any size. But how do you get started? WordPress has a five-minutes easy to install mechanism, but what do you do after you’re done with this step? How do you begin to navigate the world of themes, plugins and hosting? Don’t worry, this blog has all of the answers to your queries. This blog will further help you in your journey right from creating your own free blog to customizing it.
Before we get into the real stuff, it is crucial to analyse the difference between self-hosting installation and free hosting installation.
Difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org
The first choice that newbies will have when coming to WordPress is which version to use. There are two versions of WordPress platforms. The first is WordPress. com and WordPress.org. Of course there are few things to bear in mind before proceeding further to choose any of the platforms for your website.
WordPress.com ( Free WordPress Blog)
This is a free WordPress platform for running your own website whether it’s a blog, e-commerce store or portfolio site. This will provide you with a website with the domain address “yourname.wordpress.com”. Under this free platform, the whole website is managed by WordPress and provides you with limited access to settings. This site involves no maintenance cost. For its use, there is no requirement of a learning curve, you can just get started after creating your account. Under this, you can easily transfer your content to your custom domain anytime in just minimal clicks.
Offering multiple advantages, it has various limitations too. It limits your ability to place ads on your website. Also, it doesn’t allow you to choose the plugins of your choice. The main limitation under choosing this option is that WordPress has the authority to delta your website anytime. It restricts you even for installing Google Analytics which is reserved to be used under Business Plans only.
WordPress.org (Self-hosted WordPress Blog)
This is a self-hosted blog which needs to be downloaded from wordpress.org and can be installed on your personally-owned server. Under this, you can create your own website and design it as per your requirements. This requires an average annual cost of around Rs. 5000 (in domain plus hosting). To use it extensively, you need to have some knowledge of WordPress to access its unlimited features. To obtain the best result with this website, it is required to begin with a free site and then move to the paid site after comprehending the basics.
Although WordPress software is free of cost, you will end up paying domain and hosting cost. For the maintenance of the website, it requires a huge amount of investment. To avoid hassles during multiple uses of the website, there is always a need to update the WordPress core, themes and plugins manually.
Now you’ve understood the concept of self-hosting and free WordPress blog, it is the time to move ahead to learn how to install, customize and get started w9ith your excellent WordPress blog. This is going to be your standalone guide aiding you with all the steps to set up your WordPress free blog.
How to start a WordPress blog for free?
Here are some quick five simple steps to learn how to create a WordPress website for beginners.
- Decide a name for your blog.
- Create a Logo that defines your blog.
- Decide the top Navigation Menu for your blog.
- Plan your Homepage.
- Decide the Footer Menu.
- Decide the sidebar items if required in your blog.
- Head to WordPress.com and get started.
- Follow the steps to create your account.
- Verify your Email ID for activating your account
- Type the name you want.
- Select the free plan option.
- Follow the steps given in the list.
- Verify and launch your site.
If you’re on board with all of the above, we won’t waste another word now. Here will be the complete detailed step-by-step guide to create a possible WordPress blog.
- What are you Blogging about?
Before heading into the practical action, it is necessary to decide the idea behind your blogging. The idea of yours will depict your blog’ niche and purpose to serve. The topic should be easy for the reader to analyse. It allows them to decide beforehand whether they’re interested in your topic or not.
Although, choosing the right topic is a challenging task but there is a follow up to this, is to follow your passion. This can be a reasonable starting point and will help you to go further with your blog. Deciding what you’re blogging about, what visitors will gain from your blog, are some important considerations that should be taken beforehand. This will save a lot of time and effort.
- Choose a WordPress platform, get a blog name and head to get startedNow once you’re done with the idea of your blog, its time to choose a WordPress platform. There are two platforms, self-hosting and free hosting. You have to make a choice between them. As this blog is for beginners and also, for a credible website, you need to learn the basics with free WordPress Blog.
After choosing the free hosting option, you’re ready to decide the name for your blog. This is really an important step and worth investing too. This name can either be of yours or a relevant name matching the idea of a blog. After doing these two steps, visit wordpress.com. Now, click on Start your website and enter your email address, username and password. Choose your desirable domain name or free options offered by the site. Move ahead by choosing the option “Start with a free site”. As soon as you click, your blog is ready to be used.
- Set up your Site
After following the above steps, you’re redirected to the dashboard. You have to fill all the required information beginning with the Site name, Site Menu, Updating your Homepage, Confirming your email address, Launching your site and getting the WordPress application.
- Customize your Blog
After performing all the above steps, it is easy to provide an eye captivating design to your blog. Add pages to your blog.
Click on Site >Pages> Add new page>Choose the layout for your page>Create Publish.
After adding pages, create the menu for your blog.
Click on Design?Customize?Menu. Choose your Menu name and location.
After creating the menu, start adding items i.e pages you created.
After customizing the pages of your blog, you can even add extra interactive things to your blog to make it look attractive. To perform this action choose option Widgets.
Widgets: With the help of Widgets, you can make your blog look captive and interesting. Using this, users can extend their blog and locate their things on predefined areas. It just helps to give extra functionality to your blog.
Static Front Page: If you want to display something unique with pictures rather than your first page or landing page of your blog, this page becomes your initial page. You can select the main posts page too.
There are many customizing options available to give an attractive look to your blog. You can even learn the step-by-step detailing of the customization with the help of this youtube video:
These are the basic steps to get started with your first WordPress free blog. Using various WordPress themes, WordPress plugins, you can give a dynamic look to your WordPress free blog.
How to create a post on WordPress?
After customizing the blog, it’s the time to create your first post on WordPress. To make a post, you have to follow some steps.
Step 1: Hit the writing icon on the right at the top of the page. After clicking on it, it will redirect you to another page to draft your post.
Step 2: Give a title to your post. Your title should define the content you are planning to cover under it. It should match your niche.
Step 3: Write the post covering all the important points. Your content should be engaging and informative. You can even add links, images or videos within the post to give an excellent look.
Step 4: Set a featured image for your post. It is as important as the title. It’s the first thing that will catch the reader’s attention.
Step 5: Edit the changes if required. You can even add headings, font size, bold, italian and other features as per your requirement.
Step 6: Click on Publish and you’re done with your post.
You’re now armed with all the details to create your WordPress free blog. It is a highly scalable, flexible and versatile content management system offering you various options to create a blog for free. With a suite of tools and features, WordPress makes it easy for newbies to begin with their blog. You can even pursue a Content Writing Course to learn how to create an informative blog with all the excellent features.
FAQ On How To Start A Free Blog On WordPress
- Can I work on my blog offline?
Ans: No, you can’t work offline on your blog. You will require an internet connection to create and manage WordPress.
- Do I have to follow a particular standard while writing a blog?
Ans: No, you don’t have to follow a particular standard. You can choose any style you want.
- How WordPress is Search engine friendly?
Ans: WordPress is search engine friendly because if you write SEO friendly content even on the free version of a website, it will show up in search engines.
- Can I build a blog without Hosting?
Ans: No, you can’t build a blog without hosting. Web Hosting a place where all files related to your website are stored. All websites require hosting.
- How do I create a blog for free and make money?
Ans: There’s no such thing. If you want to make money from blogging, choose the self-hosting option.
- Which domain name should be used?
Ans: You can choose any domain name that describes your blog, business or your personal name.
- Can I change the name of the website?
Ans: Yes, you can change the name and URL of the website any time you want.
- Can we change layout and theme frequently?
Ans: Yes, you can change anything anytime starting from layout to everything.
- What are the limitations in the free sites?
Ans: The very first limitation is that you will have wordpress.com attached to your site Url and won’t be able to add new plugins which are important for certain features.
- Is it possible to undo the image changes?
Ans: Yes, you can undo all the image changes by clicking on the UNDO icon at the left side on the top.
- Is there any repercussions if I choose the image from Google and the same image is used by someone else on their website?
Ans: Yes, there can be a copyright issue. While choosing any image from google, try to upload the source link below.
- How to ensure images on google are exclusive and not used by anyone?
Ans: Upload a watermark of your name or logo on the images that you are using.
- Do I have to create a new page every time when I want to publish a new blog?
Ans: No, you don’t have to create a new page. Pages are created to design or create a fresh static page where you don’t have to accept comments or feedback from anyone.
- Can I duplicate two pages?
Ans: No, you can’t duplicate two pages. It can be done with the help of plugins and new version doesn’t allow for now.
- Can other people post on my blog?
Ans: No, they can’t post on your blog unless you don’t add them.
- Can I view the traffic of my blog?
Ans: Yes, you can view the traffic from the stats section.