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How To Start A Blog On WordPress – And Why

This post was most recently updated on August 1st, 2016

How To Start A BlogI’ll show you how to start a blog on WordPress – and why.

If you’re a total newbie to blogging, you may think you already know why you want to start a blog.

If you’re already blogging, even if you’ve been blogging a long time… you’d be wrong to think this is just for beginners.

Special: Start Blogging… Right Here

There’s a reason for experienced bloggers to start a blog on WordPress, too.

It’s all about the “why.”

Why Do Newbies Want To Know How To Start A Blog On WordPress?

If you’ve never blogged before, here are some great reasons to get started.

  • You’ll get to meet and connect with people who share your topic, your niche, and most of all, your passion.
  • You have an opportunity to post blog articles that showcase your expertise in your field.
  • You can broadcast to your readers, and indeed, to the whole world, that you are an authority in your field.
  • You are able to demonstrate your leadership through the content you post on your blog.

Now everyone has a different reason for wanting to blog.

Special: Start Your New Blog… 3 Easy Steps

Here are some typical ones.

  • Build a business through your blog.
  • Make contacts with prospects and attract clients and customers.
  • Sell both digital and physical products on your blog. Just put links to the sales pages, and give people a reason to click to learn more, or to buy.
  • Offer your own services. Maybe you’re a writer, a realtor, a therapist or anything else. Write blog posts that demonstrate your special skills, or show your professionalism. Give people good reason to hire you.

Some people use their blog to get a job, or build their career. They write articles that demonstrate their special talents and skills to attract potential employers, or to link to on employment applications.

Many people start blogging simply to connect with people who share similar interests, and to socialize with them, even.

Others blog to be part of a professional or specialize community from which they can learn more. They get to communicate with leaders in their field or niche, and to build relationships with them.

So, if you’re just starting to blog, you need to spend some time considering “why” you want to blog in the first place.

Now, I know that newbie bloggers usually rush past the “why” because they’re so anxious to get to the “how” of blogging.

Trust me, though, as someone who coaches bloggers… a great many of them spend 6 months and more going in the wrong direction with their blog, all because they never answered the “why” question.

Then, come find out, they either have to restructure their whole blog, or they’re ready to just start a new one altogether.

So, address the issue of “why” you want to start a blog sooner rather than later.

Special: FREE Guide… 4 Things I Did To Build My Blog Using Only Free Traffic

It will help you get off on the right foot, and keep moving in the right direction.

If you skip this step now, you’ll have to work a lot harder later on to get things on track.

Why Do Experienced Bloggers And Marketers Want To Know How To Start A Blog On WordPress?

There are lots of good reasons for experienced, even highly successful bloggers to want to start a new blog.

One of the common reasons is something I alluded to above.

A good many bloggers don’t really know why they’re blogging when they first start out, then later, they finally come to terms with it.

But it’s often too late to salvage their blog as it is, so they decide to abandon it and just start a new one altogether.

Their new blog is created to be more in line with what they finally figured out is their purpose for blogging.

They use it to reinvent themselves.

One blogger, for instance, might have built her blog around SEO (search engine optimization) techniques, but now decides to create an entirely new blog that focuses on social media, instead.

Special: Start Your New Blog… 3 Easy Steps

So, not only does she want to start a new blog, she has decided to use it as a launchpad for an entirely new personal brand.

She no longer wants to be viewed as an SEO expert (using this example), but now she has decided to become a social media expert.

So, it’s time to start a new blog, a new identity, a new personal brand, and essentially… a whole new business.

There are other reasons for starting a new blog, too.

Here are some of them.

Broaden your brand… specialize

Sometimes, a blogger might want to expand their personal brand into new areas.

So, maybe you’ve been blogging about video marketing. Now, you want to show people how to actually produce their videos. That’s a topic that’s related to video marketing, but creating and producing videos are really two different topics.

You might do both things on your main blog.

But you might prefer to start a new blog that is specifically about video production.

That gives you an opportunity to broaden your brand from a video marketing expert, to a production and marketing expert.

While you have two different blogs, you could cross promote them, driving traffic from one to another.

By having two different blogs instead of one, you can drive more clearly targeted traffic to each one.

Special: FREE Guide… 4 Things I Did To Build My Blog Using Only Free Traffic

Introduce your business or service

Sometimes, a blogger wants to introduce a new business or service aspect of their blog by opening a new blog.

Using the example I just gave you, it might be a good idea to start a new blog to offer your video production services or specialized training.

It’s not always the best idea to build your commercial brand on a blog that is mainly educational or informative.

You could set up a different blog for that purpose, yet, as I said, you can cross reference each blog on the other.

Become more personal

Sometimes people want to set up a new blog in order to have a personal connection with content of their main blog.their readers.
I know some very expert and successful bloggers, who don’t want to talk about their family dog, or the vacation they just took on their professional blog.

They set up a separate blog that features their personal life, adventures, opinions and rantings. Then they invite readers on their “professional” blog, to go to their personal blog. That helps them build closer relations with their readers, without detracting from the professionalism of their main blog.

Build a “Money Blog”

One of the big reasons I’ve seen experienced bloggers start a new blog is because they want to create a “money blog” separate from their educational, informational or personally branded blog.

So, you might have been blogging about video marketing.

Now, you want to start promoting products and services related to video marketing. But you don’t want to turn your branded blog into a commercial site.

So, you need to create a new blog.

Special: FREE Guide… 4 Things I Did To Build My Blog Using Only Free Traffic

Most commonly, you’d probably want to create a blog that serves as…

…an affiliate site. You might write reviews about products, and offer them for sale on an affiliate site.

…a membership site. You could turn a new blog into a membership site where you charge people for information you give them on an ongoing basis. For instance, you might have a membership site to show people advanced video marketing methods. This could be a natural outgrowth of your main informational blog about video marketing.

… a services site. Using the same example, you might want to produce videos for people, or coach them to produce their own videos. You could offer these services to targeted traffic on a special site that promotes them.

How To Start A Blog On WordPress

So, the hard part is knowing “why” you want to start your first blog, or a new additional blog.

The easy part is “how” which, ironically, is what a lot of folks think is the hard part… and it’s why they don’t do it.

But the “how to start a blog” part is really a very simple process.

Special: Start Your New Blog… 3 Easy Steps

Here it is:

Get a hosting plan. I like Blue Host best.

Buy a domain name for your blog. I always buy my domains from my blog host.

Call your host and ask them to install WordPress on your new blog.

When I create a new domain, instead of doing the WordPress installation myself, I just call Hostgator and ask them to do it. They’re very easy to work with, and they do it with no hassles. A few minutes later, I have my WordPress blog!

Choose a theme and start designing your blog.

Honestly, I rarely do this part myself. But it’s easy enough to just go on Fiverr (https://www.fiverr.com/) and search for someone who designs WordPress blogs. It won’t cost much at all, and you can find very competent web designers there.

You can also go to Elance (https://www.elance.com/) or elsewhere find a WordPress designer, but they usually charge more to do the same thing.

There are other places to go for designers, of course, but I’ve always had good results with Fiverr, so that’s my suggestion.

Select the best plugins.

If you tell your designer what you want to achieve with your blog, he/she will undoubtedly be able to set your blog up with some basic plugins that will work for you.

Or you can figure it out yourself by just doing a Google search for top WordPress plugins, and putting some research time into it.

Add great content.

Now you’re set, you are at the fun part.

This is what you’ve been waiting for, right?

I mean, you have to decide “why” you want to start a new blog, but it all gets down to this part.

So dig in and have fun with it!

Start adding valuable content for your readers, and you’ve got your new blog!

My Blogging Mentorship Program

There are many blogging platforms, but I believe that WordPress is definitely the best to use. It’s certainly the most user friendly.

Once you get the hang of it, you’ll find that you can set up new blogs pretty easily, and as often as often as you find the need to.

So that’s my shorthand version of how to start a blog on WordPress – and why.

Are you starting a blog for the first time?

If you’re an experienced blogger, have you thought of setting up a new blog?

Are you clear on “why” you want to start a blog on WordPress at this time?

Please take a moment to shoot me a comment below.

I’d love to hear what you think about this, and don’t forget to share this on your social sites so all your friends can learn how to start a blog on WordPress – and why.


Donna Merrill
Donna is a well known blogger and creator of "Blogging Magic" - an intensive guide to blogging. "Blogging Magic" is for beginners who are trying to figure out how to bring their blogs to life with tons of visits, comments and social media interaction. It's even for advanced bloggers looking to reach new levels of authority and engagement with their audience.

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72 Responses to How To Start A Blog On WordPress – And Why

  1. Andrew M. Warner
    February 19, 2016 at 1:53 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    Good stuff .

    Interestingly enough when I started out, I hated wordpress. In fact, I didn’t even want to start a blog. I just wanted to write a few articles and sell my products. But I quickly learned how important a blog can actually be. And I’ve been blogging since.

    And that has been with WordPress after trying and failing with a few other platforms. But WordPress is certainly the best.

    – Andrew

    • Donna Merrill
      March 3, 2016 at 10:23 pm #

      Hi Andrew,

      Indeed, WordPress is the best platform of blogging by far. Even on my marketing sites, I use a WordPress platform.

      Funny how you wanted to write a few articles and sell your products and learned how important blogging is. To me it is like a resume when I’m out there marketing. If I’m marketing something people will always go to my blog to see if I’m legitimate. I always get feedback on that.

      Thanks so much,

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How I Come Up With Blog IdeasMy Profile

  2. Mansi Padhya February 16, 2016 at 11:35 pm #

    Hi Donna,
    A valuable post and very informative.
    Excellent article on how to start a blog on WordPress. I completely agree.WordPress is one of the best platforms where one can find all his blogging needs so he simple needs to know how to fully exploit all its benefits.
    Thanks for sharing this.

  3. Moumita Ghosh
    February 16, 2016 at 1:37 am #

    Hello Donna,

    Very useful article indeed, specially who just started their blog. I have started my first blog on Blogger, because I was not familiar with WordPress. After that I learned (STILL i AM LEARNING) so many things about WordPress and shifted my blog to WordPress. In WordPress we find lots of options and plugins which help us to optimize our blog.

    For long term blog WordPress is the best platform.

    Thanks for sharing this article.

    Thanks & regards,

    Moumita Ghosh
    Moumita Ghosh recently posted..Best SEO Tools – 15 Experts Share their OpinionsMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      March 3, 2016 at 10:18 pm #

      Hi Moumita,

      Great to know you chose WordPress over Blogger. There are so many things you can do on this platform. Just make sure you don’t put too many plugins in….. I have broken my blog doing that one he he he.

      I do find that WordPress IS the best platform at all. I have several blogs, including a membership site using WordPress and can do so much with it.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How I Come Up With Blog IdeasMy Profile

  4. Ravi Roshan Jaiswal
    February 16, 2016 at 12:19 am #

    Hello Donna Ma’am!
    Really great informative idea ma’am.

    You are brilliant along with good blogger for me. This topic will really improve my blogging style.

    I agree with you that word press is really a great plate form for bloggers.I was really not knowing the reason of blogging. I was knowing only few reason. But you have mentioned all the reason of blogging, which is good knowledge for me.

    Thanks for great article..

    I hope you will come back soon with some more idea..

    – Ravi
    Ravi Roshan Jaiswal recently posted..Hey, am Ravi and Here’s 10 Things you Don’t know about me!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      March 3, 2016 at 10:11 pm #

      Hi Ravi,

      Welcome to my blog. I am so happy that you found this blog post useful. As a new blogger there will be many challenges but my best advice to you is just be consistent and follow a blogging schedule. Once a week, or more or less…as long as you keep to a schedule you will be great.

      Welcome to the world of blogging!

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How I Come Up With Blog IdeasMy Profile

  5. Mark
    February 15, 2016 at 4:01 pm #

    I absolutely love your proven road map Donna!

    And I sure love your excellent and prudent advice about
    taking the time to answer the “why” question now
    as opposed to having to start over six months down the road!LOL!

    We can both only guess, how many times that’s occurred!

    And it definitely seems like some bloggers never want to
    include anything personal, on their commercially based blogs!

    So like you pointed out, maybe in those specific cases, if they do decide
    they’d finally like to share some of their personal, or the non
    professional side of their lives, they should start another blog
    altogether, and like you suggested, just cross reference them.

    Great food thought as usual!Thanks!
    Mark recently posted..Who Else Wants To Know How Some Savvy Small Business Owners Recession Proof Their Businesses!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      March 3, 2016 at 10:04 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      So glad to know this has given you some food for thought! Indeed some bloggers never want to share anything personal. And that’s fine, but when we go to a blog, we want to know about the writer a bit.

      When it comes to commercial based blogs, I can see why people won’t want to share.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How I Come Up With Blog IdeasMy Profile

  6. Joy Healey
    February 15, 2016 at 10:18 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Sigh…. I was one of the ones who skipped the “why” of creating a blog, plunged straight in, then “crash and burn”. I was learning from the wrong people at the time, because I wanted a short-cut. Bad, as I now know.

    And sadly you, and so many other good bloggers, were all “out there” but I just hadn’t met you. Sob, sob. But I have now 🙂

    I’ve burned my way through more blogs than I care to remember, but I’ve learned such a lot along the way, and hope that my present offering will stand the test of time.

    Often when browsing the web looking at sites I see for “real world small businesses”, there’s the “Blog” tab – but when I click on it, it’s empty! What a wasted opportunity. But I suppose at least the structure is there when they finally see the light. I guess I should be contacting them and offering my services – but, NO, I’m supposed to be focusing 🙂

    Great post to remind people why they should always go for a blog.

    Joy – Blogging After Dark
    Joy Healey recently posted..Retirement Solutions – A Wake-up Call For ALL AgesMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 24, 2016 at 2:19 pm #

      Hi Joy,

      I could tell you that any time you learn what you’re doing wrong, you’ve taken a big stride toward success… but it doesn’t seem fun learning things that way, does it?

      Anyway, it’s the truth so I told you anyway lol

      Now that’s you’ve done things the “wrong” way, you’ve got a really good idea of how to do them the right way.

      I know the blogging you do today is vastly improved from what it once was. So, that’s really the goal, to get to the point where we actually know what we’re doing… and why!

      You’re not alone in having no “why” to start out with. That’s why most of us fail, crash and burn, crumple it up and throw it away… and then come back to do it the way we now know we should have to begin with.

      That’s why we call it a journey. Stay focused, my friend, you’re doing a great job.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Put Screen Capture Video On Your Blog | And WhyMy Profile

  7. Utsav February 15, 2016 at 9:39 am #

    Hi Donna

    Thanks for writing this ultimate guide. I wish I had read your article before commencing my blogging. Well, I am currently on blogger but soon going o nigrate my blog to wordpress. I was not familiar with wordpress when I started blogging thats why I opt for blogger. But your free guide will guide me from chossing the best theme, hosting to running it smoothly.

    Thanks. Keep Writing such useful guides 🙂
    Utsav recently posted..Top 10 Free Movie Websites to Watch and Download Full Length Movies 2016My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 24, 2016 at 1:31 pm #

      Hi Utsav,

      Nice to hear you’ve got your blog up and running, but yea, you’d really be best off with your own domain vs. Blogger.

      You do so much work to build up your blog, your following, your brand… if you do it on a blogging platform like Blogger, it doesn’t even belong to you. It can be taken down any time. It’s okay for just getting started, but ASAP… get our own domain, hook it into a free WordPress.org theme and you’re off to the races.

      Glad I could be of some help with my free blogging guide.

      Let me know if you have questions and challenges as you move forward with it.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Put Screen Capture Video On Your Blog | And WhyMy Profile

  8. Jennifer Giacoppo
    February 14, 2016 at 9:50 pm #

    Hey Donna,
    I love reading your blogs they are always full of gold nugget information and what I like most is that they tell me about the person you are.

    You are always so generous with your suggestions and I like the helpfulness with all of your links.

    I definitely learn something whenever I visit and I will be visiting more often.

    Thankyou for your advice as always and I will be looking out for more….Jennifer

  9. Emi
    February 14, 2016 at 9:32 pm #

    Hi Donna,
    This is amazing information that you are sharing here.
    Getting more personal being yourself and authentic is the best thing you can do
    for your blog and your readers.
    Thank you for sharing!
    Happy Valentine’s Day!

  10. Lillian De Jesus
    February 14, 2016 at 8:15 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Great tips to new bloggers! I remember when I started I had no clue what I was doing and what to write. I started writing about my personal experiences about family and attitude. Then added my job experiences to show my skills. Eventually I stopped writing on family and attitude and focused more on work-related posts. Then I found myself writing more and more on Canva, soon enough I found my niche in visual marketing. It’s interesting how it all came together. Of course, I received plenty of blog help from PAC – Lesly Federici and Monna Ellithorpe. It’s been wonderful to have a group help as blog resources.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Donna Merrill
      February 21, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

      Hi Lillian,

      Thanks for sharing your blogging journey with us!

      It’s interesting to see how things develop, especially as your “why” comes more clearly into focus.

      You did finally get a very nice niche to focus on… visual marketing. And especially powerful is to have developed a sub-niche within it… Canva design.

      Working within a blogging community like PAC did help you define who you are, and what your blogging is about… and why you’re working so hard to keep it growing.

      Great job with it, girl, love to see it all coming together for you 🙂

      Donna Merrill recently posted..4 Ways To Spot Trends For Your Blog – And How To Use ThemMy Profile

  11. Willena
    February 14, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

    A valuable post, Donna!

    When I started blogging in Dec.’03 (12 years ago – wow!!!), it was only for family and friends. Six years ago I started blogging for business, and now as a writer. I still haven’t figured out the “why”, which is probably why I’m struggling. I’m blogging to get known as a writer, but that isn’t good enough, because it doesn’t really offer anything of value to my readers. I have a foggy idea, but need to clarify there.

    I did have several blogs for different purposes at one time, but found I was scattered, and getting nowhere with any of them. So for now, I need to stick with one, and figure out how and why to include various elements in it. It will help when I have something to give away or sell.
    Willena recently posted..Use a Magazine to Improve Your Blog – #31DBBBDay24My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 21, 2016 at 7:27 pm #

      Hi Willena,

      It does sound like you were quite scattered in the past.

      That can get pretty overwhelming, can’t it?

      There’s really no need for multiple blogs for most people, except in some of the instances I talked about in the article, like offering services or products related to your main blog.

      Otherwise, I think you’re right to stay focused on just one thing at this point in your business.

      What would really help would be to promote either your own products/services related to “writing”… or affiliate products and services.

      So think of things related to the writing process, or business or getting published etc. These things may be good offers in your niche, and will start making your blog prosperous and give you a more clearly defined “why” –

      Think about it.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..4 Ways To Spot Trends For Your Blog – And How To Use ThemMy Profile

  12. Kathryn Maclean
    February 14, 2016 at 4:51 pm #

    Hi Donna,
    My favorite subject. I love everything about blogging.

    Excellent article on how to start a blog on WordPress. There are many reasons to blog of course. Establishing your “why” gives you a guideline or reason and direction to write your blog. I use my blogs to build my business, make contact with potential clients, sell digital products and offer my services as a marketer, and a WordPress blog creator.

    I liked the example of starting a new blog to offer your services or specialized training.Setting up a fresh new blog for personal connection with content for my main blog readers is something I have done. I am doing this with my three blogs currently.

    I would like to have a blog that is a membership site in the future. Great write up on setting up a blog specifically on WordPress for new people. I have asked for your blogging basics guide as I know it will give me tips that I likely have not thought of.

    See you soon.

    • Donna Merrill
      February 15, 2016 at 8:15 pm #

      Hi Kathryn,

      I get the idea that most bloggers think they are eternally tied to just one blog.

      There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, but you can do a lot of things with multiple blogs, too.

      Now, the first thing I usually hear from people when I tell them that is “I have all I can do to keep up one blog, I’d never be able to have others,”

      That might well be true if you’re thinking of writing fresh content for multiple blogs, promoting them all separately, syndicating on social media etc.

      But you can have parallel blogs that do not require constant content. For instance, if it is a membership site, it could be set up once and then require very little maintenance. If its an affiliate review site, you just post when you’re promoting something. If it’s a “brochure site” it could simply list your products and services, list fees and calls to action.

      All of these different sites could be interrelated and cross promoted.

      I know this is advanced for newbies, but for the pros… think about it 🙂

      Donna Merrill recently posted..4 Ways To Spot Trends For Your Blog – And How To Use ThemMy Profile

  13. Vernon
    February 14, 2016 at 8:10 am #

    Hi Donna,

    I didn’t have a clue to what I was getting myself into.

    I knew why I wanted to blog and that was to help people through my experience with applying spiritual principles to my life.

    I learned everything from how to set up my blog to writing and editing it.

    It wasn’t until I met professional bloggers like yourself I started entertaining the thought of doing it for money.

    I would tell newbie to stay connected because it will become discouraging and you will want to give up.

    And I would let them know you never stop learning when it comes to blogging.


    • Donna Merrill
      February 15, 2016 at 4:55 pm #

      Hi Vernon,

      You come from an unusual direction.

      You started by knowing exactly why you were blogging, and eventually started thinking of how you might monetize your blog.

      The majority of bloggers I work with do it the other way around.

      They want to make money blogging, but have no idea of what they want to blog about. Their “why” has nothing to do with conviction and passion, but is based purely on financial goals.

      Glad to have you stop by and give your perspective 🙂

      Donna Merrill recently posted..4 Ways To Spot Trends For Your Blog – And How To Use ThemMy Profile

  14. Sonal Talwar
    February 14, 2016 at 4:11 am #

    Hi Donna

    A very useful and informative post. It is really important to know the reason that why I want to start a blog before you start with it. You ahve shared all the important information required for a newbie.

    Thanks for sharing!
    Sonal Talwar recently posted..Kiss Day 2016: Express your LoveMy Profile

  15. Erika Mohssen-Beyk
    February 14, 2016 at 12:10 am #

    Hi Donna,
    it is good for beginners to see what you tell them here.
    I think this is very much needed.
    I too did start blogging and did not know anything about.
    Lesly and Monna helped me to slowly find out about it.
    I did not even know there is something else than WordPress
    But I see there are many who start blogging.in a different way.
    I think it is important for any business to have a blog these days
    and with WordPress is is easy to manage.
    Thank you

    • Donna Merrill
      February 15, 2016 at 11:55 am #

      Hi Erika,

      This is important information for newbie bloggers… the beginners, like we all were at one time 🙂

      You found some good friends to help you when you started, and that’s great. When you can find real people to give you a hand, it makes things so much easier than trying to surf around for tidbits of info online, and then trying to put them all together.

      That’s exactly why I tell newbies to get some coaching as soon as possible, either from me or someone else credible and reliable (and affordable of course, lol).

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  16. Dr. Erica Goodstone
    February 13, 2016 at 10:41 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I am writing this comment for the 3rd time. Your site does not allow a url link.
    I wanted to let you know that your blog post is so valuable and informative that I
    am linking to it on the drop down page for Promote Your Practice as my web site
    MarketingOurPractices.com. You’ll notice that I have already linked to a few of
    your blogs there.



  17. Joan M Harrington
    February 13, 2016 at 8:01 pm #

    Hi Donna 🙂

    Awesome post! Blogging is by far the BEST way to not only share valuable content but engage with your readers 🙂 Using WordPress as your platform is the best platform online, easy to use and one of the best to use especially for newbies 🙂

    I use my blog as a “central” hub for my brand, as it shows people what kind of services I offer as well as learning about who I am (being personal and real), people can relate to me on a more personal level.

    You have highlighted some awesome reasons for having a blog for your business, just makes sense to have one 🙂

    Thanks so much for sharing your valuable knowledge on why blogging is the best way to brand yourself and be known as an expert.
    Joan M Harrington recently posted..How To Increase Your Conversions Using Social ProofMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 15, 2016 at 11:47 am #

      Hi Joan,

      You sound like you’re doing things the right way, my friend.

      Yes, use your blog as the central hub for your brand. That’s really what a blog is all about.

      From that central hub, folks can learn about you, about things you’re knowledgeable about, and of course… about your products and services.

      Once you’ve got that all going for you, just start hitting the social sites to drive people over to your blog.

      That’s it in a nutshell.

      Getting started is not always easy though, especially for newbies with hardly any computer or tech skills. That’s why WordPress is the best platform by far, and it’s why I like using HostGator because they do so many techie things for you.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  18. Monna Ellithorpe
    February 13, 2016 at 7:25 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Great information and advice. I fall into the first category of “I had no idea what I was doing when I started” but due to time and persistence, things are working out.

    I resisted learning WordPress for so long but happy I finally did make the change.

    I still have a little work to do in terms of meshing my two interests together; writing and marketing but I know with the new relationships I’ve been making with so many new people that will all come together too.

    • Donna Merrill
      February 15, 2016 at 11:40 am #

      Hi Monna,

      I guess none of us knew what we were doing when we started.

      But we had each other, right 🙂

      Now that you’re digging into WordPress more, I know you’re happy to be there.

      It’s such a user friendly and flexible way to blog.

      Good luck getting those niches blended, girl… not always easy, but yea, connecting with others is always a great way to get it done.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  19. Ben
    February 13, 2016 at 5:35 pm #

    Hi Donna. I completely agree. I was asked recently to come up with three talking points about how to create a presence online and the first, and most important, point that I came up with was “why” as well. Once you know why you want to be online then you can determine how best to go about it, whether as a blog, traditional website or just on the social media sites.
    Ben recently posted..Are People Judgmental or Just Have Low Self-EsteemMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 14, 2016 at 3:33 pm #

      Hi Ben,

      Knowing “why” you want to start a blog is the natural place to begin.

      It’s not always that easy though. People often don’t know “why” or often think they do, but come find out… they didn’t.

      So it’s not a terrible thing to start with the “what” and just get started. Doing the mechanics of the process will often give you the time, reflection and feedback that helps you finally get clarity on why you wanted to start blogging to begin with.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  20. Chris DeeWaard
    February 12, 2016 at 5:08 pm #

    Hi Donna.

    Very good post for beginners.

    I know when I was told by my mentor that I needed a blog to let people follow my journey into the world of internet marketing, I was thinking, “What the hell is a blog?” I really had no clue what it was. I had some experience with WP as a platform using plugins to do other things like creating bookmarking sites, stores, etc. but never to create a blog. That was my original “why” in creating my blog. As I was told, “Don’t get it perfect, just get it going.”

    I logged into my DreamHost account and bought my domain, my name .com , installed WP very easily using my host’s One-click install and I was ready to go within a day. I prefer to be hands on with my blog. I’ve learned different things from other bloggers but I make sure I implement everything myself. I like to be hands-on. I had a different theme which was OK, but I thought it was just too plain looking, so I did change it to the one I have now and am very happy with my decision.

    Now, as I’ve grown over the last 16 months as a blogger, my “why” has changed from just telling my story to teaching others. I’m even more focused now than I was just a couple of months ago.

    Yes, I need to get more consistent with my posts, but I’d rather make sure I have something of real value instead of just throwing anything out there. My next post is going to be my best, I think. I’m maybe halfway through it and have passed the 600 word mark already. Should be done be the end of the weekend.

    Blogs are definitely one of the best ways to engage with people. Who would’ve thought when I started out I’d have people like yourself, Ryan Biddulph, Adrienne Smith, just to name a few, visiting my cyber-home, giving great value in the comments section of something I posted.

    Doesn’t get any better than that. It has forced me to bump it up a level or two, which is a good thing.

    It’s also a great way to build a great following, which can lead to a bigger, more targeted mailing list, sales, etc. The sky becomes the limit.

    Thanks for this reminder, for me anyway, of why people blog and how to set one up for those who haven’t yet.

    Have a great weekend…….Chris
    Chris DeeWaard recently posted..Walk The Walk! Don’t Talk The Talk!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 14, 2016 at 2:33 pm #

      Hi Chris,

      I love reading your story. Thanks for taking us along a mini walk-through of one blogger’s journey with setting up a WordPress blog and starting to get initial traction with it.

      While you like doing the techie part of it yourself, I try hard not to get involved in that. It’s not what I do best, and I’m always afraid of screwing something up, even a simple WP upgrade.

      I have managed hosting for my blog (Krishna WorldWide) and I’m so happy I do. Yes, it costs more than shared hosting which I do with most of my sites (HostGator), but my own blog is very valuable and I don’t trust that. With managed hosting, I don’t do anything at all… not even the dreaded WordPress updates (which seem to happen every month or 2).

      It’s nice to see your bigger purpose for blogging (your “why”) develop.

      I always tell my students to start with their “why” but I know it’s usually something that morphs and grows as in your case. That’s just the way it is.

      Your blog is really like a living organism, and it often grows in ways you didn’t anticipate. What’s important is that you grow along with it, as I can see you are doing.

      Keep up the great job!

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

      • Chris DeeWaard
        February 14, 2016 at 4:10 pm #

        Hi again.

        I’m blushing. Thanks for the kind words.

        I enjoy sharing my stories when relevant. Glad you enjoyed it.

        Took a while, but I’m finally heading in the right direction with my blog.

        Can’t wait to get my latest post out there for everyone to see. I think it’s going to be one of my better ones, but I’m biased. LOL. I’ll let the readers decide that. Going to be a delay as I’m doing a lot of research to make sure I get it right.

        I’ll let you know when it’s up.

        Have a great week…..Chris
        Chris DeeWaard recently posted..Walk The Walk! Don’t Talk The Talk!My Profile

  21. Mi Muba
    February 11, 2016 at 10:23 pm #

    Hi Donna

    Very basic level of issue you discussed here as why to start a blog is equally important to know apart from knowing how to start it.

    WordPress is one of the best platforms where one can find all his blogging needs so he simple needs to know how to fully exploit all its benefits.

    The main goals you pointed here are sufficient to tell numerous benefits of blogging and if it is done on WordPress then things become easier and faster as well.

    This post would not only help newbies to be firm on their decision to start a blog but it will also let already established bloggers to know how an info product could be converted into a source of regular stream of income.

    Many thanks for sharing this very informative and helpful post.

    Have a great weekend ahead.
    Mi Muba recently posted..18 shameful reasons why influencers are not noticing youMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 14, 2016 at 1:56 am #

      Hi Mi Muba,

      Glad you pointed out the importance of WordPress blogs for promoting your info products. And yes, they can give you a steady source of income as you say.

      There are so many reasons to have a WordPress blog, and promoting your own products and services is a big one. That’s why it’s not just important for newbies.

      Most pro bloggers run multiple WordPress sites. Some are blogs, but others could be product delivery platforms or even membership sites.

      Glad you got some good info to use here, my friend.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  22. Peter Beckenham
    February 11, 2016 at 5:45 am #

    Hello again Dona,

    This is such a timley post for me. Tomorrow I am sending out some “must see” links to my lists.

    OOne of the most asked about topics my subscribers wanted me to cover was how to get started with a blog in the best way possible. This blog post will be front and center as one of my stronest recommendations.

    But not only is trhis post for beginners, you very cleverly explained a whole range of WordPress items that actually started to make sense to this technically challenged blogger.

    Many thanks for sharing this excellent article Donna – very much appreciasted.

    Best wiishes from a remote Thai vilage blogger

    Peter Beckenham recently posted..8 Ways To Create Enthusiastic Blog ReadersMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 14, 2016 at 12:43 am #

      Hi Peter,

      Glad you found this so useful, and yea, especially some of my cheat sheet methods of dealing with some of the technical aspects. Basically by giving it off to someone else to do, haha.

      I know people love fiddling around on WordPress with their plugins and widgets and popups and all that. I’m not an “under the hood” kind of gal. I’d rather hire people to do that stuff (or let my husband have the fun, lol).

      I focus on the creative part and building relationships and creating products.

      All of those things are what drive the popularity and profitability of your blog.

      And yes, that’s true for beginners, but also the pro bloggers who are always looking for better ways to build their business.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  23. Atish Ranjan
    February 11, 2016 at 12:11 am #

    Nice post, Donna. I have a written a complete technical guide to set up a blog that one can use to do things on their own.

    But, the way you have suggested to call host and get things done, is also nice. I love to set up WP blogs myself because I enjoy doing the setup, customizing my theme, and all.

    Keep writing such informative post.
    Atish Ranjan recently posted..10 Best Google Adsense Alternatives to Monetize Your BlogMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 11:28 pm #

      Hi Atish,That’s great that you wrote a technical guide for setting up WordPress blogs. Nice job.

      I’m a bit lazy when it comes to the tech aspects of all this and I just let others do most of it for me, like HostGator, which is extremely helpful in doing these things.

      The beauty of WordPress, though, is that you can do as much or little of the tech work as you want. And you can build themes, add plugins etc that conform precisely to what you need.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  24. Lea Bullen
    February 10, 2016 at 9:18 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Glad that you share this, especially the why part.

    This is a wonderful article. You really break down the different ways you can use WP. This is great when you’re trying to figure what which direction to go in.

    I really like WordPress. Additionally because you can have a modern, professional looking site and keep it up to date yourself easily. It’s really unforuntate when I see other sites that are still offering Christmas specials because to me that’s evident that they have to get someone else to make changes on their site. Which in turn looks to the site visitor like the site isn’t maintained.

    Have a great rest of the week.

    Lea Bullen recently posted..Make Life Easier with These 10 Simple TweaksMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 2:14 pm #

      Hi Lea,

      Yea, WordPress is such a great platform. I could have named this article, “how to start a blog” but that would imply that all blogging platforms are equal. But they are not.

      WordPress is head and shoulders above the others because as you point out, it always looks professional, and you can easily keep it up to date on your own. You don’t need to hire anyone to manage it or make changes or anything else. You really can learn to do it yourself, even though you can hire out help.

      These are the reasons I ended up calling this article “how to start a blog with WordPress” hehe
      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  25. Stella Chiu
    February 10, 2016 at 3:36 pm #

    Hi, Donna

    Love this post because you directly addressed two important elements of blogging – “why” and “how”. “why” is not difficult for me, i know what I want my blog now.(may be it will be changed according how things developed). The “How” thing takes me long time to learn. I believe I am still learning it.

    I enjoy WordPress platform and Host Gator whose customer service is excellence.

    Thanks for listing out some of resource places!

    – Have a nice week!

    Stella Chiu
    Stella Chiu recently posted..Follow the Birds to Have Worried Free LivingMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 2:08 pm #

      Hi Stella,

      It’s true. Anybody can learn HOW to blog and put the actions into place to make it happen.

      The character and passion behind your blog is wrapped up in your WHY. And that’s something you have to discover and work out according to your own interests and purpose.

      You say that you’re still learning it… I’d say we all are. Always. It never ends as we continually develop our voice and let it move into different directions. You know what they say… just go with the flow.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  26. Sherman Smith February 10, 2016 at 2:38 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    The most crucial part of blogging that many skip over is “Why” they’re blogging. At first it doesn’t seem as important as to how to grow a blog, but if you don’t have any type of direction, then you’ll end up going into different directions going nowhere.

    You want to come up with the purpose of why you want to start blogging! If you look at the most successful bloggers, they have a consistent theme with their blogs. People know where to go to when it comes to a specific topic. This is what I explained about branding in my new post. When you can build a targeted audience with this type of thinking, then it becomes easier if you want to leverage your blog for sales.

    Thanks for sharing Donna! Have a great day!
    Sherman Smith recently posted..3 Elements To Focus On To Help You Save TimeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 2:17 am #

      Hi Sherman,

      You must have direction. You must figure out “why” you’re blogging.

      Now, in reality, a lot of people just start blogging without really knowing that. And it’s okay, but you’ve to get to figuring it out as soon as possible. It will help you build the right networks, and to target the right followers. You certainly don’t want to spend a lot of time or even money, driving lots of traffic to your blog if they’re not even your target prospects, right?

      You make a good point, too, that most of the successful blogs you find are built around a consistent theme and specific topic. That needs to be your goal, to get it into focus as early on as you can. I’ll have to check out what you’ve written about “branding.” It’s really what we need to do to build our blog around.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  27. Adrienne
    February 10, 2016 at 10:52 am #

    Hey Donna,

    Well for those of us who have been blogging for awhile and definitely see the benefit of it then I would hope all of those still sitting on the fence or eager to get started will resonate with this post.

    I know the why trips a lot of people up and I get that a lot as well with my clients. As you can imagine, they all have big hopes but not any concrete plans coming into this. I know it can be hard at times to pinpoint your why but if you don’t get that down then you’ll just be doing this for enjoyment. That’s all great if that’s what you want to do but it will get really old fast when you feel like you’re just spinning your wheels.

    I know that the reasons you’ve given here will help those eager to get started probably thinking more about the directions they can go. There is so much potential online today and when done right you can really build an incredible business.

    Great share my dear and I’ll be sure to do the same. Hope you and David enjoy your week.

    Adrienne recently posted..Every Entrepreneur That Blogs Regrets Not Doing This SoonerMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 1:38 am #

      Hi Adrienne,

      You’re so right about blogging being just for your “enjoyment” if you don’t have a solid purpose… a firmly entrenched “why… then you’re whole business model is not business model at all. It’s just ramblings and musings.

      When you do get a firm control of why you’re blogging, though, the rest is just a matter of putting the pieces together. With WordPress, that’s the easy part.

      Yea, it’s true, a lot of people waste a lot of time doing this wrong. It’s not really difficult to make it all happen, once you’ve got your purpose and and intent on seeing it through. We’ve both done it, and I know we’re both dedicated to helping others do it, too.

      What a fun, and a rewarding business. I love helping people get their blogging business flying high, and I know you do too. I guess you could say it’s our passion 🙂

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  28. Chery Schmidt
    February 10, 2016 at 10:22 am #

    Good Morning Donna, You sure do make it d=sound easy my friend LOL

    Such a great article on how to start a blog using wordpress. This is perfect
    for those looking to get set up the right way the first time..

    Great share my friend..
    Chery :))

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 1:16 am #

      Hi Chery,

      I think just about any online business you can think of should have a WordPress blog at it’s heart. A blog is just the best way to coordinate your business, promote it, and even deliver what you’ve got… info, membership, coaching… anything really.

      You can, of course, use a blogging platform other than WordPress, but I don’t see any point at all in that. You get so much flexibility and power, as well as the simplicity… using WordPress. Nothing compares IMHO…. hehe

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  29. Dana
    February 10, 2016 at 10:13 am #

    Hi Donna,

    I agree that in many cases, the “how” is easier than the “why”. As you’ve pointed out, there are plenty of resources available.

    I started a blog a few years ago without a specific direction. I just wanted to create it and express my thoughts. I didn;t have a clear why, but I was able to build it with no knowledge of how to do anything. The tools became available and I created it.

    It became tough after a while because I began to change directions and realized the one I had started didn’t fit what I had decided to focus on as time went on.

    I love what I have going on now. Still a learning process, but it excites me and I’m passionate about it.

    I love this post and wish I had read something like this years ago.
    Would have been easier to have done things with a more deliberate intention since I had gotten the other one off to a good start, but que sera sera 🙂

    It’s never too late.
    Dana recently posted..Why Losing My Job Actually Saved My LifeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 13, 2016 at 12:34 am #

      Hi Dana,

      Que sera sera… for sure… haha

      Your experience goes to show that creating a new blog never gets “old.” It’s always a work in progress and each time you do it, you have to start with your “why” even though it’s always evolving, as it did for you.

      It’s nice if you’ve got it all clear right from the start and you can begin with “deliberate intention”.

      But in reality, that rarely happens because people start morphing into new directions. That’s why you’ve always got to have your finger on the “how to start a blog on wordpress” button at all times.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  30. Marquita Herald
    February 10, 2016 at 8:43 am #

    Oh this is great Donna, and I am one of those that started a new blog after blogging for a couple of years. My previous blog did well and even won a few awards, but it was way too general and I opted to create a ‘fresh’ new blog rather than attempt to reinvent the wheel. Since that was my first blog I was stunned to find out a) how much had changed in the couple of years since I set up the new blog and b) how much I’d forgotten about what goes into setting up a new blog! Also, I mentor first time authors and there are always questions about how to set up a blog. So I’ll be happy to share with them!
    Marquita Herald recently posted..Reflections on the Nature of LoveMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 5:38 pm #

      Hi Marquita,

      I do remember the old days of your previous blog. Now it is stunning! I do believe that we ourselves change over the years and thereby our blogs reflect that change.

      We don’t have to reinvent the wheel but can surely tweak an grow. Yes, there is so much we have taken for granted in setting up a new blog isn’t there?

      I did want to pull back a bit and write something for new bloggers an those who are on the fence of starting a blog.

      I know my pro bloggers like you will surely enhance this post for those who are new. I thank you for that.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  31. Anant Patel
    February 10, 2016 at 5:25 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Really infromative post. Before few weeks I have post same content but your content seems very interesting and your brainstroming power is excellent. Most important thing is you have shared why newbies need to start blogging which is not in my post. Your post clear all of their doute from their mind.

    Thanks for sharing great piece of content!!
    Anant Patel recently posted..How To Start a Blog – Free Beginner’s GuideMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 4:55 pm #

      Hi Anant,

      Great minds think alike! We both wrote about starting a blog this week and I just left yours and commented. You have done a wonderful job on that.

      Starting to blog is an important thing to do. Yes, they may be fears that come up, but taking that first step is one of the most important things a person can do.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  32. Deepak Gera
    February 10, 2016 at 5:15 am #

    Hi Donna, Nice post, Just to add few things here. As a newbie everyone has a struggle around what we want to write. I’ve seen most of bloggers having primary target to make some quick money out of it. For making money they are choosing any niche to write upon and that is the big mistake i guess.

    We all want to make money from knowledge and effort but starting from money oriented approach is not going to take us too far. Suddenly we’ll realize that someone else is making good money in different niche and then we’ll start moving to that direction and so on. So selecting a niche is one of the most struggling thing. Choose only those subjects which you are passionate about. Choose those topics which you want to learn for your personal development and want to share about your learning journey.

    Our personal learning make a way to go long and our sharing create a solid base for blog.

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 4:53 pm #

      Hi Deepak,

      Most newbies struggle but eventually “come into their own” and it is fine to tweak a blog. We are growing and it does reflect on our blog posts.

      Indeed, we all want to make money and there are so many ways to market. Using our blogs as an “authority” in a particular niche helps a lot. Selecting a niche is difficult. But we can always put up another blog too lol.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  33. ikechi
    February 10, 2016 at 3:28 am #

    Hi Donna

    What a great post and you are title is just spot on.

    As you brilliantly shared, the most important thing is to know why you want to blog. In my case, I thought, I had an idea of why I wanted to blog and it took a while before I understood my purpose. So it is really important that we should know the reason.

    Using WordPress as a blogging platform has been an interesting experience, WP has so many features and I am comfortable with it.

    Thanks for sharing Donna. Have a wonderful week. Take Care
    ikechi recently posted..Who Would You Be If The World Never Gave You an IdentityMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 4:35 pm #

      Hi Ikechi,

      Thought it was time for a good refresher on blogging. There are a lot of newbies out there that do get confused and some fearful. Of course there are the pro bloggers that are my friends too that come to this blog.

      As it is important to know our purpose in the beginning, it is ok sometimes to tweak it as we ourselves grow. I’ve seen many bloggers as well as myself do this.

      Yes WP is my favorite all time platform.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

  34. Harleena Singh
    February 10, 2016 at 3:00 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Informative post indeed 🙂

    You mentioned all that a newbie would want to know, especially when they want to start their blogs but are lost about the several choices in hand. Even some seasoned bloggers would love to go through the various reasons you mentioned so well here.

    Speaking of myself, I did start my present blog, though not with the intention of becoming a professional blogger! That just happened along the way and one thing led to another. And, I started on the free Blogger platform, five years ago, mainly to showcase my writing, being a freelancer. However, it was within a few months when I understood the importance of blogging on a WordPress platform and switched over, and there’s been no looking back.

    Yes, there could be many reasons, as you mentioned, and WP has so many more options as compared to any other platform I think – I love it indeed!

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead 🙂
    Harleena Singh recently posted..Common Listening Barriers For Parents And How To Eliminate ThemMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 3:48 pm #

      Hi Harleena,

      It is so funny to me that you started your blog without intention of becoming a professional blogger. You sure took off and became one! he he he

      So good to know you switched over to WordPress. There are so many things one can do using that platform. I’m glad I started with it from the beginning.

      Of course I had it done for me because I’m not a techie. But it is so easy to use.

      As always, thanks for sharing and being my first responder!


  35. Saurabh Tiwari
    February 10, 2016 at 1:49 am #

    Hi Donna Ma,am,

    Wow Wonderful article, This is a best post for every newbie blogger who want to set his own blog in wordpress, I think after reading this article any one can set his blog easily..
    Saurabh Tiwari recently posted..Fall in love with Upcoming Technology of SmartphoneMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      February 10, 2016 at 5:14 pm #

      Hi Saurabh,

      Hopefully so. I thought it was time to write an article focused more on newbies. I do have many coming to me via my list and just wanted a friendly reminder to set their minds at ease that one can blog easily.

      As for all my pro blogger friends, they will be adding their advice here I just know it!

      Donna Merrill recently posted..It’s The Little Things That Big Dreams Are Made OfMy Profile

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