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Six Easy Steps to Start a Blog

Six Easy Steps to Start a Blog

Are you ready to start a blog but are not sure exactly what to do or how to do it? Here are six easy steps to help you get started. (This blog post has some affiliate links of some of my favorite things!)

starting blog

Get hosting

Hosting is the space where your website is at online. It’s kind of like the land that your house is built on. There are lots of hosting sites, like Go Daddy, Bluehost, etc, but my favorite site is SiteGround. SiteGround has  a quality service, affordable prices, excellent customer service, free domain, an easy 1-click WordPress install, 30 day money back guarantee, free SSL certificate, and more! SiteGround is also super affordable, which we all love, right?

There are other free or cheap website options available, such as WordPress.com, Wix, Blogspot, etc, but I always suggest going self-hosted. This way you actually own your content and you’re not relying on someone else. It is also the best for SEO and monetizing your blog if that’s your goal.

To get started on SiteGround, you can click on my link and choose a plan. The StartUp plan is probably good enough for now if you’re only going to have one blog, but you can always go bigger if you choose. You will click on “Get Started” then it will take you to register your domain name.

Choose and register a domain name

Your domain name is your url, or site address. It is what you type in the address bar of your browser to get to your site. You can register a domain name very easily with SiteGround when you are setting up your hosting account.

I would definitely do a search for your domain name and similar ones like it first, to see what else is out there. You don’t want to choose something that will get confused with someone else’s or something that is going to go to a questionable site if someone accidentally types it wrong. Getting a .com url is usually best, but you can always get a .net or something else if you need to, like I did.

On the next page you will enter your account, client, payment, and purchase information. For the data center you will choose which ever one is closest to where most of your readers will be coming from. So since I am in the USA, as are most of my readers, I chose Chicago. You don’t necessarily need the extra services, unless you want to get them. I did not get the Site Scanner because I use a free plugin (WordFence) on my site in place of that.

Install WordPress

Next, you will need to install WordPress on your site. After clicking Pay Now and finishing your purchase, you should get a page that says Proceed to Customer Area. When you click on that, you may get a pop up that asks if you want to install WordPress. Otherwise, you can go to your account, the CPanel, then click on WordPress under the pre-installers category.

After you install WordPress, you can access the back end of your website, which is your WordPress admin dashboard. To access it, you will go to www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin, replacing “yourdomain” with your domain.

Install a theme

After you have installed WordPress and have logged into your dashboard, it is time to choose a theme for your blog. There are free WordPress themes that you can choose from or you can pay for one. While there is nothing really wrong with choosing a free one, at least to start with, they are not as customizable as others. My recommendation, and what I use, is the Divi theme from Elegant Themes. I love how customizable it is and it is pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it. If you choose to use Divi and want some tips for using it, just schedule a call with me and I will go over it with you!

To install Divi, you will go to the Elegant themes website and click on Join to Download up at the top right. Then you will choose either the Yearly Access or Lifetime Access. You will fill out the information and complete your registration. Then you will go to the members area (I get there by clicking on Login after I am already logged in and it takes me there) and click Download on the Divi Theme. You will need to make sure you download it as a zip file.

Then you will go back to the admin dashboard of your site, and go to Appearance and then Themes. From there you can click Add New, then Upload Theme and upload the zip file of the Divi theme. After it installs, you will click Activate Theme to activate it on your site. And now you are ready to move on to the fun part!

Customize and add content to your site.

After you choose and install your theme, you will need to customize it and add your content to it. Customizing your website the way you want it and in a way that reflects your brand can take time to do. If you are up for it and want to do it, go for it! The Elegant Themes website has a blog where they have lots of articles with tips that you can look through for assistance if you need it. But if you want to spend your time running and growing your business and let someone else create your website for you (like me!) then I would love to chat with you about that! It’s what I love to do! 😉

Want to know more about visual branding? Check out this post!

Write your first blog post.

Now you are ready to write and publish your first blog post! Don’t wait too long for this step. If you keep messing around with the customization of your site until it is absolutely perfect, you may never get around to actually blogging! So be sure you start blogging as soon as you can. You can always work on making your site better as you go.

I hope these steps help you get started! Want some more help with your website or branding? I’d love to chat! Schedule your free 15 minute discovery call with me here!

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7 Things I Stopped Doing In Order To Grow My Business

7 Things I Stopped Doing In Order To Grow My Business

7 Things I Stopped Doing In Order To Grow My Business

business growth

 

You often hear people talking about what they did to grow their business. But sometimes there are things you are doing that you need to stop doing in order to grow your business. Here is my list.

  • Doubting myself. Ah. This is a big one! It is so easy to let those thoughts of doubt creep in. You wonder if you are good enough, have the right skills or the right personality, you think maybe you can’t do it and are afraid you will fail. Guess what. Those doubts are holding you back from what you can accomplish! I ran across a quote recently that I love that says, “You are braver than you feel, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” I love that, because you ARE! We all have moments of doubt, but when they creep in you need to kick them to the curb and not let them define your success. Don't let your doubts define your success. Click To Tweet
  • Listening to my fears. This one kind of goes along with the last. Along with doubts come fears. Many times it is the fear of failure, but sometimes there can be a fear of success, as well. And that fear can hold you back from growing your business. Don’t let fear get in the way. Do it scared, just do it.
  • Comparison Do you ever look at another consultant or competitor and compare yourself to them and their success and just want to give up? Yeah, that happens to all of us at times. It is so easy to look at what someone else is doing and how great their business seems to be going and think we can’t do it, get jealous of their success, or feel inadequate. But just like an iceberg, we are only seeing part of what is going on and not what is underneath all of that success. We don’t see all of the hard work that has gone in to getting them where they are at now. Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle! Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle! Click To Tweet
  • Copying and pasting others. Do you ever see what someone else is doing great and want to copy them so that you can get the same results? They post a fun graphic on FB and get lots of engagement on it, so you are tempted to steal their graphic and use it as well. Yes, I said steal. Because it is stealing! Don’t do this! Not only can it land you in FB jail and piss someone off, but it is illegal! You cannot just take graphics you find online (or on google!) and just use them for yourself! Don’t get yourself in trouble and/or get put in FB jail, or worse, sued and fined! Yes, it most definitely happens, so that is not a risk I am willing to take! Get yourself a free account on Canva.com and make your own graphics! There are also lots of phone apps that you can use to create cute graphics as well. Stand out and brand yourself! And while we’re at it, try to stay away from using your company’s graphics as much as possible. Yes, they are created for you to use, but if everyone in your company is using the same graphics, then you are not branding yourself and FB may decide to block you (put you in jail) because you are “copying” and not being original. Check out my post on Dos and Don’ts of Visual Branding for more branding tips.

    Join my Facebook Group, Brand Bosses, where we talk all things branding, blogging, websites, marketing, business tips, and more!

  • Sell, Sell, Sell. Is selling your products all you are trying to do with your business? There is so much more to a business than just selling a product! Don’t just sell, sell, sell. Build relationships! Engage! Be authentic! Get to know your audience! Make sure they are able to get to know you, like you, and trust you before you try to hard sell them anything. Work at building authentic relationships and the selling will follow. If you are in direct sales, check out my post, How to Sell as a Direct Seller, or my post on Resources for Direct Sellers!
  • Doing it alone. Do you ever think you have to do it all alone in order to succeed? Most of the people who have thriving businesses did not get there by themselves. They had other people alongside them encouraging them and giving them advice along the way. Don’t have someone like that? Find someone! Is your upline not helpful or non-existent? Don’t let that stop you, find someone else. Maybe it’s another consultant, a different upline/team, or your downline. Maybe it’s a business coach you find or a friend or someone in a FB group for direct sellers or entrepreneurs. If you don’t have any support in your business, I would encourage you to check out two groups on FB: The Socialite Suite with Brenda Ster and Social Super Group with Jilleysue. They are both fantastic groups with lots of advice and encouragement.
  • Negative talk. Your mindset and self-talk can really make a difference in your success. I didn’t used to really believe it, but I do now. When you believe in yourself and think and speak positively about yourself and your business, your positivity will affect your outlook, your confidence, and your business. Come up with some positive affirmations and mantras (even if they are not yet completely true) and start speaking them every day. Write them down somewhere will you will see them every day to remind yourself. Mine is, “I attract motivated direct sales leaders who want to do business with me. I am the direct sales website woman.” Check out Inspired Ivy on FB for more on this topic.

So there you have it. 7 things you need to stop doing in order to succeed in your business. What are you going to do about it? Did one (or more) of these 7 items stand out to you? Which one are you going to stop doing? Tell me in the comments! I’d love to help you along your journey!

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