The One Thing No One Tells You About Starting a Blog

If there’s one question that I hear a lot, it’s “so…how did you start your blog?” or “I want to start a blog, because I like to write, but I have no idea where I’d start”.

If you’ve been thinking either of these thoughts, I’m going to answer both with one post.

If you’re looking to start a blog, most people will tell you to “write about something that you’re passionate about”. This was difficult for me, because I didn’t think that I was ‘passionate’ about anything. In my mind, having something that I was ‘passionate’ about, equated to “do you have any hobbies?” I have no hobbies. I like everything in general, nothing in particular.

If you’re one of those people who also doesn’t have any ‘hobbies’ (and there are many, many of us) to speak of, or anything that you’re particularly excited about doing, seeing, being, etc., don’t despair. That was me. I racked my brain for months about what I could possibly write about, that anyone else would give a shit about reading.

Then one day it dawned on me; I love fashion, I love ‘lifestyle’ in the form of things like shopping for cool things for my apartment, trying new restaurants, hunting for great deals on anything I might want, health and wellness info, etc.

Essentially, I like nice things. Hence the name of the blog.

That was it. That realization gave birth to “She Loves Nice Things”; Food, Fashion, Lifestyle and More…for Less. It was perfect ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s not ‘nichey’ as most will tell you to be; finding a niche that you can cater to, and writing about that. “She Loves Nice Things” is about the pursuit of nice things, which I suppose covers just about any and everything you can reasonably think of, but whatever. I went with it.

The Steps:

Purchase a Domain Name and Hosting

I’ve built a few blogs in my ‘past lives’, so I knew that the first thing I had to do, was to see if the name I wanted was available as a domain for purchase. Lucky me, it was (obviously). At the same time, I also purchased hosting for my beloved new domain.

*This next bit is REALLY IMPORTANT. Please read it ๐Ÿ™‚

What’s already out there

You’re probably already familiar with “script” from all the other ‘usual suspects’; “I use this web host and you should use it too, because it’s only $2.95 a month! But only with MY link! Wink!”

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Horse sh*t.

Here’s the deal on the “$2.95 a month but only with my link” BS; Yes, you can get your hosting for $2.95 a month. I’m cheap AF, and I’d say that’s a great deal, but not only am I cheap, I’m also a hardcore skeptic, and if you tell me that I can only get that price “with your link”, I’m gonna poke around elsewhere to make sure that’s all true.

I can’t stand half-truths and flat out lies, and there’s SO MUCH of it on the www. I don’t care what you’re trying to sell me, if I smell a lie, I’ll click away faster than you can say “wtf?”

That said, here’s the deal with most “$2.95 a month” hosting deals (you ready?);

Sure…you get your hosting for $2.95 a month. But you only get that price if you pay for 36 months of hosting in advance!

Yeah…that’s what I said. 36 MONTHS IN ADVANCE. If you pay $106.20 ($2.95 x 36), you can have the hosting for your brand new blog, for “$2.95 a month”!ย (I’m Canadian, so that translates to $139.51 for me.)

That pissed me off. I felt like I’d been “bait and switched”. And you don’t see that total until you get to the checkout, and by then, you’ve wasted all kinds of time on this damn thing!

At the moment, I own 4 blogs, and I use this web host for all of them.

Know why?

I use them because they’re $2.88 a month, and I pay for that MONTH TO MONTH. I don’t pay $2.88 x 36 months up front!

What if I decide that I don’t want the damn blog anymore?? (Not gonna happen, but I’m playing Devil’s Advocate here.)

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*Ok…I have a confession to make here; because I own so many blogs, I have the upgraded version of that plan that lets me host an unlimited number of blogs on the one host, but that’s still only $4.88 a month!!

If you want a WordPress managed blog, even that’s only $8.88 a YEAR!!! Why the hell would you go anywhere else and spend $106.20???

With any of the other web hosts, I would have handcuffed myself into a 3 year commitment with my damn $139.51 payment!! (Canadian, remember.)

I can’t have that. And with 4 blogs, that’s five hundred bucks out of pocket right away with those ‘other guys’.

Screw that nonsense.

In addition, my hosting company has everything those other guys have; quick customer service (I swear they all know me by name), SSL site security, etc.

CLICK HERE to grab your domain (which will only cost you something like ten bucks a year), and your awesome web hosting at a truly awesome price; just $2.88 a month ๐Ÿ™‚

Choose a Blogging Platform.

Now…I’m going to tell you something that no one else is telling you

(I’m steadyย handing out the secrets here…)

I’m telling you this so that you don’t (like I did) start using this blogging platform, and want to throw your computer through a window, thinking that it’s supposed to be easier than it is.

That said, here goes;

THIS BLOGGING THING IS NOT EASY!

Starting a new blog is MUCH more than “all you have to do, is purchase your blog name and hosting, and you’re up and running!”ย 

And don’t let ANYONE tell you that it is.

WordPress is a fantastic blogging platform. No question. It’s better than pockets. I absolutely LOVE it… Now. BUT…when I first started with WordPress, there were many (MANY) times that I actually (no joke) cried with sheer frustration over customizing the various parts of the blog, and sometimes I STILL DO when I’m working on a new blog.

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You will too. I promise you that.

People make it sound like WordPress is easy to install and set up, but I’m telling you..IT’S NOT. Not at first anyway. If you don’t already know what you’re doing, WordPress will make you question your mental ability. If you have access to someone who can install and set up your WordPress blog, please, for the love of GOD, get that person to do it.

But if you’re the patient sort, who loves a technical challenge, WordPress is your deal. Go nuts with it.

Once it’s all set up, you’ll need to choose a theme for your new WordPress blog, and customize it. Here’s where the heavy lifting comes in. THIS is the part where you want to hand it off to someone who knows the difference between a “plugin” and a “widget”. Alternately, you can google just about anything you want to know about working with a WordPress function.

The next piece of advice I’d give you, would be to make a list of bloggers that you enjoy, follow them religiously online/social media, and do what they do with their blogs. Some will tell you to do something, but they’ll leave out a very valuable part of that piece of advice. Your job, is to figure out what that piece is ๐Ÿ˜‰

If you’re looking for a web hosting company that you can trust and I haven’t completely scared you out of starting that blog, click here to get your hosting for an ACTUAL $2.88 a month ๐Ÿ™‚

And that’s it! Happy blogging!

If you have any questions that I can help with, please shoot me an email ๐Ÿ™‚

Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

 

 

6 Replies to “The One Thing No One Tells You About Starting a Blog

  1. OMG!!! You totally get it!!! I followed another bloggers instructions (paid tutorial) and instantly got lost. Then I followed a guy on YouTube with over a million views and again, got lost, AND locked out of WordPress! After searching the web for how to fix that and several tears shed, I got back in. And shed happy tears at that point! Ha! Now Iโ€™ve followed the instructions of yet another guru (he is good) but am STILL having some issues that heโ€™s emailed me to help fix. When you say to have someone else set it up for you…..I wholeheartedly agree! What some of these techs that โ€œshow you how to set up a blog in 10 minutesโ€ neglect to remember, is that the majority of us are technically challenged and have no clue what the H theyโ€™re talking about. And when you follow instructions, you end up with just the bare bones, the โ€œ skeletonโ€ of the blog. Not the pretty theme example you saw and liked. Such a HUGE learning experience!!!!

    1. Hi Tori!

      Thanks for reaching out!

      Yaassss girl. I totally GET it. Those who say that you can “set up a blog in 10 minutes” are either insane, or they’re referring to installing WordPress, which you can literally do in under 10 minutes. All it usually requires is one click. It’s choosing a theme for your blog, then getting it to look like the theme demo that you fell in love with, that makes us want to rip our hair out with frustration ๐Ÿ™‚ Here are 2 pieces of advice; 1. If you choose a theme that says “download demo info” or something like that in the theme documentation, CLICK THAT BUTTON!! It’ll download the theme the way that it looked when you chose to use it, and all you’ll have to do is replace the theme images, etc. with your own ๐Ÿ™‚ and 2. When you’re in your WordPress dashboard, and you go to ‘Appearance’ and ‘themes’, when you’re looking through the “theme preview”, if the preview also looks like the demo, that’s your theme. As before, all you’ll need to do, is replace the theme images, etc. with your own ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I’m facing a blog redesign. Can you recommend a WordPress site developer who knows what s/he is doing, can/will speak almost jargon free English, and doesn’t cost a zillion dollars?

    1. Hey Suzanne! Thanks for reaching out ๐Ÿ™‚ If you’re looking for a developer to redesign your blog without you having to get a second mortgage, I think you have 3 choices. You could go to a site like Upwork, and post it there for developers to bid on. All you have to do is choose which best suits you, and have the conversation with them. Or you could go to Fiverr Pro. I use Fiverr for everything I need that I can’t or don’t have time to do myself. Generally they charge five bucks for small gigs, but Fiverr Pro is for those who’re looking for bigger jobs like a blog redesign. All you have to do is key in what type of skill you’re looking for (in this case, blog design), and you be presented with hundreds of developers who can do the job, at varying prices, from a dozen different countries. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Barring those two suggestions, the third is what I decided to do because I wasn’t in the position to pay a fortune to have my blog(s) built; learn to build it yourself. But like I said in my post, building a blog has an insane learning curve. But if you’re up for a digital adventure, this would be it ๐Ÿ™‚
      (I think Fiverr Pro is your best option.)

      Good luck!

      Debbie ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Thank you for your honesty! I have been at the “bought my domain name and now I’m frozen” stage for for a couple of weeks. Read about a million of those “if you have a pulse, you can set up a money making blog in your sleep” articles, but still had this niggling feeling in the back of my head that I was being sold a load of snake oil. There’s nothing worse than feeling stupid when everyone else seems to think something is super easy. Now, with your encouragement that it’s okay and normal to feel like tearing your hair out, I feel like I can actually do this. Thanks again. Yours is THE ONLY post I’ve read that tells it like it is. I’m heading over to your blog. You’ve got a new fan:)

    1. Hi Cara! Thanks for reaching out!

      I can totally relate to how you’re feeling. Know that you’re NOT CRAZY. It’s NOT as easy as everyone says it is, which really chaps me. I’d rather someone tell me that it’s going to be difficult at first, but I’ll get over that hump once it’s built, than let me think that I’m “some dummy who bit off more than she can chew with this blogging thing”.

      It’s all good! If you’re ripping your hair out trying to get a handle on it, that’s perfectly normal. Like I said, once it’s built, it’s actually smooth sailing. You just have to weather the storm of the build ๐Ÿ™‚

      Have an awesome weekend!

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