planning | living | loving life

How to Start a Blog WITHOUT Spending a Fortune!

blogging

Even though this blog is relatively “new”, I’m not new to blogging.  In fact, I’ve been blogging on and off for about 10 years.  I did a stint on YouTube which, to be honest, was a struggle for me.  I have a hard time talking in front of people and even though I was only on camera, I knew in the back of my head that people were going to watch.  That gave me all sorts of indigestion.  But I love to write and I feel like I can express myself better in writing than I can vocally.

Today I’m sharing how easy it can be to start a blog AND you don’t have to spend a fortune to do it.  It doesn’t matter what you blog about (travel, fashion, beauty, etc.) just do it!  I believe everyone has something to contribute to the universe.

(This post contains affiliate links which means if you click the link I may receive commission.  See full disclosure page for more information.)

Getting Started

~The Niche~

The first thing you want to do is determine what your blog is going to be about.  As I said before it can be anything but I think it’s important to write about things that you are passionate about because it adds authenticity.  There are all sort’s of “rules” and guidelines for successful blogging that say you should pick a topic or “genre” and stick to that.  This way your readers understand what you are all about.  For me, I’m passionate about a LOT of things and I don’t want to pigeonhole myself.  So I don’t really limit myself to one specific thing, whether that’s right or wrong, it’s my blog.  🙂

~Wordpress or Blogger~

Then you need to determine what platform you want to use like WordPress or Blogger.  I used to use Blogger because it’s user friendly and is great for starting out.   But I have come to appreciate WordPress much more because I have more control over how my blog looks.

~To Host or Not To Host~

Finally, one of the most important things you want to consider when starting your blog is whether or not you want to self-host.  You can use Blogger or WordPress.com to host your site but you don’t get the control you do when you self-host and it’s not expensive.  I like to use  Bluehost to host my blog because they’re relatively inexpensive I get great support.  Right now they’re offering web hosting starting at $1.95 per month and that includes your domain, site builders and a SUPER easy WordPress Installer.

Creating Your Theme

Choosing your theme is key to conveying what your blog is all about and that starts with the name of your blog.  I live in the city and my youngest daughter and I share a middle name “Rose”.  I wanted to incorporate those two things in the name and overall theme of the blog.  Thus “Rose of the City” was born.

WordPress and Blogger both have built in themes that you can use if you’re starting out.  There a ton of different styles to choose form and you get started with any of those themes and layouts.  But when the time comes (and it will) that you want to further personalize your blog, you’ll want to find a theme that suits your style.  You can go all out and hire someone to do that for you OR you can buy a theme package from a site like Etsy.  I purchased my blog theme from aiwsolutions; click here to see her shop!   No affiliate link, I just really love her designs and she follows up to make sure everything worked ok.  The other cool thing about buying a theme is that you often get matching icons and fonts to make the overall look cohesive.

Equipment and Supplies

You don’t need to start with a bunch of expensive equipment.  When I first started blogging I used a point and shoot camera for my pictures and I took most of the photos outside because I didn’t have any fancy lighting.  I currently use a Canon T6i for my photos and I edit them with Adobe Lightroom.  But you can take some really amazing photos with the camera in your iPhone.  One of my favorite apps for editing is Aviary and it’s free!

You’ll also need props for your photos and most of mine come from around the house.  I always have seasonal flowers sitting somewhere and I will often use them in my pictures.  I also bought a white foam core board so I have a nice bright surface to photograph on.  It’s only $12 for 5 sheets!  You can also find inexpensive props at the dollar store or craft store.

Just Do It!

The most important thing I can say to you if you’re considering starting a blog is “JUST DO IT”!   Just dive right in and have fun with it.  I am no expert when it comes to blogging but I do it because I enjoy it and I find it rewarding.  I write about whatever I feel like writing about and I know that’s against the “rules” but I don’t care.  I do this because I love it and I really hope that my experiences will help others.

What are your tips for new bloggers?  Do you have any special pieces of advise for newbies?



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