How to Start a Blog That People Will Read in 2020
What’s a blog?
A blog is a short name for “weblog,” which were diary-based posts published by anyone who had a website in the 1990s and early 2000s. The first documented blogger, Justin Hall, started his weblog in 1994.
However, it didn’t take long for weblogging to turn into blogging and for it to get popular. In the 2010s, “multi-author blogs” emerged, featuring the writing of multiple authors and sometimes professionally edited content.
Today, in 2020, there are blogs by individuals and companies in industries like personal finance and politics. But one thing still stands true above all the noise: people follow people. That’s why blogging is still relevant—and we’d argue that it’s bigger than it’s ever been. People are starting a blog every day, and you’re next.
Why you should start a blog
You have something to say, and you have a story to tell. Right now, there are thousands of people you don’t know yet who are waiting to be inspired by your words, your actions, and your personality. If that’s you, it’s time to start a blog.
There’s no credential for starting a blog. In other words, it doesn’t matter if you’re a stay-at-home mom who wants to make a little extra money or if you’ve always dreamed of becoming a big-time blogger.
In the end, starting is the first step. Below, we’ll show you how—and you can do it in under 20 minutes. If you don’t, a year from now, you’ll be wishing you would’ve started today. So, whatcha say? Let’s get started!
How to start a blog
Below you will find five easy steps to starting your blog, from picking your name to blog hosting to customizing, and finally posting.
Important Note: It’s our goal to provide you with everything you need to start a blog. For that reason, we only suggest tools that we believe in and currently use or have used ourselves.
1. Choose a name
What do you want to call your blog? Good names are both distinctive and descriptive.
For example, we named our blog Blogworthy because we want aspiring bloggers like you to know that your blog is worth starting. And we want to inspire you to start a great blog that’s worth reading.
If you are struggling to pick “just the right thing,” don’t worry! We’d recommend using your name, so it’s both straightforward and easy to remember for your readers.
Please take a look at our breakdown of Step 1: How to Choose a Name to read the seven-step framework for naming your blog.
2. Setup your blog
Your next step is to set up your blog online. In other words, you’ll need to pick a server to host your domain. All blogs and websites live on a “server,” which is a fancy name for a remote computer in a web service center.
The truth is there are dozens, if not hundreds, of hosting services available. They’re all vying for your business, but not all of them are very conducive to new bloggers. Some of them small or newer companies, so they are harder to trust with your site, or their customer service is very hard to get ahold of (especially when you need them). Many of them are too spendy, or their servers are crowded and have slow page load times, and others are so complicated you need a computer science degree to operate them.
For those reasons, we recommend Bluehost for new bloggers. They’re established and well-known in the blogging community, their customer service team is in the US, they’re available 24/7, and page load times are super-fast.
When you sign up using our link, you’ll get everything you need to start for only $3.95/mo, and you’ll get a free domain. Wahoo! It’s so affordable to start that it’s almost a no brainer. And there no need to worry because Bluehost offers a 30-day money-back guarantee in case you change your mind.
If you want a step-by-step tutorial for how to do it, visit our breakdown of how to set up your blog in Step 2: Set Up Your Blog.
3. Make it beautiful
Once you have the technical side of your blog set up, you can make it beautiful. Designing your site is one of the most fun parts of this entire blogging process.
As you begin blogging and building your audience, you may start to be intimidated by your lack of credibility or at least the feeling of that lack. You are going to ask yourself questions like, why would people visit my site? Why would they want to read what I write?
Here is the catch. Even if you’re the world’s leading expert on your subject, it won’t matter if your website experience is less than pleasant and not visually pleasing. If your site is beautiful, however, people will want to read it and share it with their friends.
And they’ll want to come back, not only because your content is fantastic, but because of the care and presentation of your blog. But, sometimes, this feels a little intimidating. So, where do you start? Thankfully some wonderful people have built these things called WordPress themes.
If you want to read our recommendations on where to find the best WordPress themes, visit Step 3: Make It Beautiful.
4. Share your story
Now that you have picked a domain name, set up your hosting, installed WordPress, and designed your site, you are now ready to dive into the writing, community building, and branding yourself as the self-published author you want to become.
To learn more about how to share your story and build a blog that people will read, visit Step 4: Share Your Story.