I often get asked by my friends and co-workers how to start a blog. The good news is that it's very simple!
If you want something slightly more customizable than a free blogging platform (Blogger, Wordpress.com, etc.) then follow my suggestions below. If you want to start out simple with the potential to expand your options, I suggest purchasing a domain name and using a free blog platform that allows custom domain mapping (Typepad allows this with their premium subscription, I do not know about other platforms). Purchasing a domain name now and maybe using it later ensures that you have the domain that you want.
Three easy steps to achieving blog ownership:
1. Domain name and hosting
First things first, choose what you want your domain name to be. I suggest something related to your name, as that will be easy for people to remember. If you have a business name, use that.
Once you have some ideas, head over to Bluehost to see if your domain name is available.
After you get your domain name, you'll need a place to put it, called "hosting". Bluehost has more features for a lower price than most other hosting options. Do your research though, if they don't meet your needs, you will definitely be able to find an option that does as there are many available.
2. Install Wordpress
After you have completed your registration, you'll need to install Wordpress. Bluehost makes this very easy. Simply select "Wordpress" from the Website Builders section of your homepage.
This will take you through the steps of installing Wordpress. Once you are done, type your login URL (given to you at the completion of the installation) into your browser and you will be taken to your Wordpress site.
3. Make it pretty
Wordpress has hundreds of free themes available. Simply select "themes" from the menu on the left, select any preferences you may have and search! The options can be overwhelming. You can also purchase themes (I have never done this).
Once you have chosen a theme...it's time to start writing!
Please note that I do not currently use Wordpress. I have used it in the past, but chose to switch to Typepad due to issues with making a few elements of my blog look exactly the way I wanted. My coding knowledge is limited and I wasn't willing to put the time and effort into figuring it out.