howtostartblog

Do you dream of sharing your photography with the world? Wished you could wow the masses with your stellar recipes? Or simply want a little slice of the web to call your own?

Have you always wanted to start your own blog but aren’t sure where to begin? The idea can be daunting, but it’s easier than you think! Follow these 4 basic steps to get your blog up and running in no time.

Which blogging service? There are a number of services out there to help you build a website but WordPress.org is by far one of the most versatile,  professional, & fast-growing options. Plus, it’s free to use!

1. Choose a domain name and web hosting service

Upon choosing a domain name and ensuring that it’s not already taken by someone else, you’ll need to secure a web hosting service. Web hosting is similar to renting a storage space where you’ll keep all of your site’s files.

We personally recommend the web hosting services Bluehost.

We believe that Bluehost is one of the more affordable and reliable hosting options starting at just $3.95 per month. In addition, you’ll receive a great hosting package, a free domain, and other helpful tools.

Note: We are fans of the Bluehost webhosting service which is why we endorse them. Please note that Bluehost offers an affiliate compensation for any hosting sign-ups we may help them secure. 

We’ll go over an example of signing up for a hosting service to show just how simple it is.

To get started with Bluehost, choose your desired hosting plan.

 

 

Bluehost offers a number of hosting plans to suit your needs. The most affordable option is the “Basic” plan. To secure the lowest price, consider opting for their 36-month hosting package which locks in the best rate possible!

Next, choose your desired website domain name for free:

 

bluehostdomain

 

Finalize your hosting plan and choose any optional add-ons that appeal to you.

 

 

bluehostoptions

 

 

You’re all set! It’s that easy.

2. Installing WordPress

Most webhosts will offer a “1-Click Install” tool which makes installing WordPress a piece of cake.

For example, with Bluehost, once you’ve created an account with them, they’ll offer an automatic WordPress installation option.

 

3. Choosing a theme for your blog

Themes are beautiful things– they not only change the aesthetic look of your website but can also add functionality beyond what the standard WordPress themes provide. Having decided what your blog will focus on, you’ll need to choose a theme that will best showcase your content. From free themes to theme marketplaces to premium subscriptions to freelance theme developers, the choices are nearly endless.

Solo Pine currently has 11 themes crafted to handle nearly any content genre you can dream up:

Cassia: Elegant and rock-solid, Cassia’s clean lines and premium features expertly handle photography, videos, and much more with cool sophistication.

Hickory: Hickory’s sleek and classic design ensure an unparalleled display experience, chock-full of options to allow you to tailor it to your specifications.

Hemlock: A clean yet visually arresting blog theme, Hemlock is a perfect partner in presenting your content with contemporary class.

Florence: Florence is a bright and airy theme for those who love crisp presentation, loads of customization options, and a straight-forward blogging experience.

Willow: Featuring a robust, striking aesthetic, Willow is a one-page multi-purpose workhorse.

Rosemary: Rosemary is a light & bright blog theme, tailored to showcase your content in an effortlessly timeless style.

Redwood: Boasting a bold, fresh design and bountiful features, like its striking slider and promo boxes, Redwood is guaranteed to make an impact.

Oleander: With clean lines, loads of lovable features, and the option to create your own web-shop, Oleander is the perfect blend of form & function.

Sprout & Spoon: Whipped up with food bloggers in mind, Sprout & Spoon is packed with foodie features guaranteed to make you drool (maybe just a little)!

Laurel: Pack a visual punch with Laurel’s variable Featured Image sizes and create vibrant category indexes. The perfect balance of polish and wow.

Alder: Alder’s clean & classy look lends a structured elegance to any content. You bring your vision & voice, Alder will take care of the rest!

All of the themes are customizable and offer a plethora of exceptional features, not to mention their responsive design and top-notch tech support guarantee.

 

4. Installing and setting up your theme

Have a theme picked out for your blog? Great!

There are a number of ways to get your theme up and running in WordPress. A great resource is the official WordPress Codex.

All Solo Pine themes will include detailed documentation which will help explain the step-by-step process of installing as well as the basic points of setting up your theme. And, should you have any questions regarding your Solo Pine theme, you’re always welcome to contact us via our support desk. We’ll be happy to assist!

Once completed, all you need to do is fill your site with your photos, music, videos, ideas, or whatever it is you’re passionate about. Happy blogging!

  • Kai Rafanan

    I love your themes especially Rosemary but Good Lord, there’s always a payment :(

  • http://www.keep-up-with-the-jones-family.com/ KeepUpJonesFamily

    Hi! I have a five year long blog and I so want to install your Oleander theme but I’m terrified I will lose all my content – do you have anyone you can recommend to install themes? Thank you so much!

    • SoloPine

      Hi there,
      I’ve replied to your email with more details, though also wanted to reply here :-) If you’re currently running a WordPress.org blog all of your content should be safely saved in your WP database which is hosted on your server. One of the beautiful things about WordPress.org is that you can install and activate another theme and all of your posts, pages, images, etc. will be right there. We like to recommend regularly making backups of your WP database to be doubly-sure your content is safe, though.

      While we don’t have a freelancer we personally can recommend for installing themes, we like to encourage customers to take a look at the installation article and see if it’s something they feel comfortable doing themselves ( Oleander’s is here: https://solopine.ticksy.com/article/5898/ ). It’s quite easy!
      Cheers!

  • Jordyn Dick

    can you help? ive downloaded one of your themes and dont know how to download it to my account with blue host? im so confused and am about to give up. i have the theme rosemary

    • SoloPine

      Hi Jordyn,
      We’d be happy to help! Have you installed WordPress onto your Bluehost server yet? If you haven’t installed WP yet, Bluehost has a video on how to install the WP platform here: https://my.bluehost.com/cgi/help/wp_install

      Once you’ve installed WP and you can access your WP Dashboard, you can then follow the theme installation steps for Rosemary in this article: https://solopine.ticksy.com/article/3821/

      If you find yourself with any questions with the theme, you’re very welcome to head over to our support site at https://solopine.ticksy.com and open up a new support ticket. We’d be happy to assist.
      Cheers!

  • Laura Delanchy

    Hi there,
    I would like to know whether it’s possible to get a domain name, get the theme (i’m interested by the Laurel one) and work on it, but host it later on. I would like to work on my blog for several months before i put it online.
    Thank you
    Laura

    • SoloPine

      Hi Laura,

      To work on WordPress without hosting it would require that you set up a localhost on your computer using a program such as WampServer. You can check out a tutorial on how to do this here: http://webdesignerwall.com/tutorials/installing-wordpress-locally

      Alternatively you can get hosting and put your site in “Coming soon” mode while you work on it behind the scenes.

      Cheers!

      • Laura Delanchy

        Thanks a lot

  • Sophie Gordon

    Hi there,

    I’m interested in the Sprout and Spoon theme. I currently already run a food blog: sophgordon.com which is currently on Wix. I am however looking to move over to WordPress and have fallen in love with your theme. How easy will it be for me to transfer over i.e. all my content etc. Also as I already have a domain, do I link that after I’ve put all my content up? Any help would be hugely appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Soph

    • SoloPine

      Hi Soph,

      We unfortunately don’t have much experience with the Wix platform or transferring content from Wix, however it looks like there are some good tutorials on how to go about it. For example: http://www.wpbeginner.com/wp-tutorials/how-to-properly-switch-from-wix-to-wordpress-step-by-step/

      You would first want to get started with your self-hosted WordPress site and get that setup. If you have a domain that you’d like to keep, I believe your webhost would likely have you setup your WordPress site on a staging site (different web address than your desired domain).

      Then, most forums seem to recommend transferring your Wix content over to WordPress by using the RSS feed. The above tutorial has a good walk-through with how to do this.

      Then, once you’ve transferred everything over to the WordPress site, your webhost should be able to help you re-direct everything to your desired domain/web address.

      I hope this helps!
      Cheers!

      • Sophie Gordon

        Hey!

        Thanks so much for getting back to me. So I’ve read the link you sent – super useful, will get started now! One thing, do I download and create the WordPress site first, inc the beautiful theme, and then upload my content..?

        Thanks!

        • SoloPine

          Hi Sophie,

          I would definitely setup your WordPress site first before beginning to transfer content over from Wix.

          It may be easiest to also install your preferred WP theme at that time (before transferring content) as you’d then be able to see how the site will fill out with your content as you transfer it.

          Cheers!

          • Sophie Gordon

            Hey!

            Ok great and do I need a host if I’ve already got a domain, or can I go ahead and install the theme to my account?

            Sorry absolute WP rookie! X

          • SoloPine

            Hi Sophie,

            I believe Wix hosts your site for you on their own servers? If so, I don’t believe they’d let you install the WP.org platform onto the server.

            You would need to first secure web hosting from another source (we have some recommendations noted above: https://solopine.com/how-to-start-a-blog/ ). Then you can follow the steps above to install the WP platform onto your server. Most webhosts have a “1 click install” button for this. From there, you can install your preferred WP theme onto your WP platform via the dashboard.

            If you do decide to go with one of our themes, we have theme installation guides available. For example, here’s Sprout & Spoon’s: https://solopine.ticksy.com/article/7538

            If you find yourself with any questions about this process, you’re welcome to shoot us an email via our contact form ( https://solopine.com/contact-us/ ). It may be easier to chat via email than this message thread ;-)

            Cheers!

  • fontdroe

    dear solo pine…
    I am mistaken in buying a theme item for a creative market, for the theme of oliander paid 2 times and my balance is reduced .. I hope you can give a refund or if you do not want to refund I just hope your solo pen can give one more theme for the loss of payment for The same Orilander theme

  • C YOU NEVER

    Hi Solopine!
    Your themes are all so nice but I have one question about the Hemlock one. You note states it’s not compatible with wordpress.com but only .org. What’s the difference?

    Thank you very much

    PS: I’m new to all this!

    Cynthia

    • SoloPine

      Hi Cynthia,

      WordPress.org is a free, open-source platform that is installed on a your webhost’s server. All you need to do is secure webhosting from one of the hundreds of webhosting companies online (like Bluehost, Media Temple, GoDaddy, etc.). All of our themes and themes for sale on marketplaces online are essentially created to be used with this WP.org platform.

      Alternatively, there’s a similarly-named WordPress.COM which will host your site for you on their own servers. They’re a privately-owned business. They will only let you use themes from their own directory, not purchased themes like our own.
      I believe the only exception to this rule is if you purchase their “Professional” or “Business” plan. In that case, they’ll let you use outside themes like our own. This is something that customers have recently let us know, though we can’t 100% confirm that WP.com’s “Pro” plans will let you use outside themes.

      Please don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions! :-)

      Cheers!

  • https://davidboozer.com David Boozer

    I have had Willow since the day it came out, I LOVE IT!

    • SoloPine

      So happy to hear it, David! :-) Thank you!

  • http://spacema-studio.com/ Spacema-studio

    Thanks. Good article