Start a Blog | Part 1 | Hosting, Domain, Install

 

I expect you've landed on this page because you'd like to start a blog to share your story and provide encouragement for others. You can find pages similar to this on many sites. But, I won't leave you with only this information. You'll find additional pages to guide you step-by-step from Hosting to Posting.

This page may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product or service using a link on my site, I may receive (at no cost to you) compensation for your purchase.

Three parts are required to start a self-hosted WordPress blog or website.

  1. A domain

  2. A hosting account

  3. A copy of WordPress.org software

You may register your domain with the same or separate company as your hosting service. Domain registration requires an annual renewal fee. The company who manages your domain registration and renewal is the domain registrar.

Your next step is to choose a hosting service. Just as you install software programs on your computer and create files that are stored on your computer, you will need to choose a location to install the software from WordPress.org and store your website's files and database. I recommend and am an affiliate for SiteGround which has a reputation for consistent uptimes and excellent customer service for shared hosting plans. Most hosting services offer a discounted rate when you create your account and, at your annual renewal, charge the standard rate. If your budget permits, you can often purchase a 2-3 year hosting account at the initial low rate.

Here is a guide of what we will cover in registering a domain and setting up a hosting account with SiteGround.

  • Hosting

  • Domain

  • Visit the cPanel

  • Install WordPress

  • Create email address and add forwarder

The first few slides guide you through the steps to registering a domain and setting up a hosting account with SiteGround.

 

Hosting

Visit SiteGround.com to create your hosting account. Click on Web Hosting in the top menu.

screen shot of wordpress dashboard

 

Choose the Start Up plan and click the blue 'Order Now' button.  The $3.95 a month is paid annually.

screenshot of siteground hosting

Once you have chosen a hosting plan, you will need to enter a domain. You have a choice to registering your own domain or using a domain registered elsewhere.

Screenshot of WordPress dashboard

 

Complete the client and payment information requested on this page.

screenshot of siteground hosting

In the Hosting Services section, you can lock in the introductory price for 12, 24, or 36 months. In the Extra Services section, you’ll see the fee for your Domain Registration, the option to include Domain Privacy, and the option to include SG Site Scanner. Domain Privacy replaces your user information with a proxy address. This prevents companies and individuals from seeing who owns a particular domain. We will set up other security methods instead of the SG Site Scanner service.

screenshot of siteground hosting

 

You’ll arrive on this page with the option to Proceed to Customer Area.

siteground hosting screenshot

 

This the Home screen for the customer area. You’ll want to click on the 'My Accounts' tab.

Siteground hosting screenshot
SiteGround (and most other hosting companies) provide an automated software installation process for WordPress. You'll find the appropriate icon with a click on the Go to cPanel tab.

 

cPanel

Your next step is to install WordPress. Click on the 'Go to cPanelbutton'.

screenshot of siteground dashboard

 

The cPanel screen offers icon links to many functions. Locate the Autoinstallers section and the WordPress icon. Clicking the 'WordPress' icon will take you to the installation screen.

screenshot of siteground dashboard

 

WordPress Installation

Click the blue 'Install' button.

screenshot of wordpress dashboard

 

Now you need to complete the Software Setup form.

  1. Choose Protocol - Your choices are http:// or https://. If you have already purchased a SSL (security) Certificate for your site, https://. Otherwise, choose http://. SiteGround provides a free certificate that you can add to your site at a later point in the tutorial.
  2. Choose Domain - Usually, this is the domain you choose registered or entered during the account setup.
  3. In Directory - Leave this field blank.
  4. If you know your site name, you can enter it here.
  5. If you have determined your site tagline, you can enter it here.
  6. Enable Multisite - Leave this box unchecked.

 

Next is the creation of your username and password for your Admin Account.

  1. Admin Username - DO NOT use the word Admin in this field. This will be the username to log in to your WordPress site.
  2. Admin Password - Make this strong and write it down.
  3. Admin Email - An email address to which you have easy access
  4. Select Language - Defaults to English - Change if needed.
  5. Limit Login Attempts - Check this box.
  6. Choose a Theme to install - Leave this field set to None.

Once you have completed the form, click the gray 'Install' button.

Hosting Domain WordPress

Once the installation process is complete, you'll see a confirmation screen with the Congratulations message.

Check your inbox for several email messages from SiteGround. If you register a new domain, you may receive a VERIFICATION REQUIRED message. Respond to this message and save a copy of these message in a safe place.

You can now access your new WordPress website. http://yourdomain.com will show you the front of your website. http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin will cause the login screen to appear. You will use the username and password you just created.

screen shot of wordpress installation

 

Email Address

Before you start the initial set up of your site, access the cPanel again to create a new email address.

You will be creating a domain-based email address. Gmail and other email clients now prefer that messages like newsletters or blog posts updates be sent from a domain-based email address.

You will create an email address and then forward it to the email address you are currently using (unless you want to start using it as your primary email address.)

You can visit SiteGrounds tutorial: https://www.siteground.com/tutorials/email/create_email_addresses.htm

screenshot of siteground dashboard

 

Once you have created your new email address, visit your cPanel again and click on the 'Forwarders' icon.

screen shot of siteground dashboard

Click the 'Add Forwarder' button.

Put the name of the email address you wish to forward from in the first blank field. For example: for user@yourdomainname.com, put the user in the first blank field.

You can choose the address the incoming mail should be forwarded.

Click the 'Add Forwarder' button.

screenshot of siteground dashboard

screenshot of siteground dashboard

 

Username and Password List

Anytime I talk to a new blogging client and need access to the blog or other platforms, she scrambles for a username and/or password.

Save yourself some time by creating a list of usernames and passwords for all your accounts.

Content Plans

Begin considering the content you want to include on your site. Begin making notes about the following:

-Menu items

-Pages

-Categories

-Sidebar Content - Author Box, Email Subscription Form, Instagram or Twitter Feed, etc

-Any other feature or function you've seen that you might want to include on your site.

Go to Part 2: Dashboard Intro