Discover Blogging: Episode 14 | Ready, Steady, Go...


Having discussed WordPress.com 4 Plans in detail in Episode 13: Putting things in perspective, it's time to jump into action. My​ ​sincere​ ​apologies​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​you​ ​on​ ​hold! Let us dive into it. I had suggested in Episode 8: Get Started to keep a few things ready to sail through this part smoothly. In line with that, just keep in mind your objective.

First things First

What​ ​do​ ​you​ ​want​ ​to​ ​achieve?​ ​To​ ​help​ ​you​ ​visualize​ ​that,​ ​I​ ​take​ ​help​ ​of​ ​the​ ​description​ ​of​ ​the objective,​ ​from​ ​the​ ​WordPress.com​ ​homepage,​ ​which​ ​you​ ​may​ ​want​ ​to​ ​accomplish.​ ​So​ ​I​ ​am reproducing​ ​it​ ​here​ ​verbatim:

“​Design​ ​your​ ​success​ ​story​ ​with​ ​a​ ​powerful​ ​website​ :​ Every​ ​website​ ​starts​ ​with​ ​an​ ​idea. WordPress.com​ ​provides​ ​the​ ​design,​ ​features,​ ​and​ ​support​ ​to​ ​bring​ ​it​ ​to​ ​life.​ ​Choose​ ​your theme,​ ​pick​ ​a​ ​domain,​ ​select​ ​a​ ​plan,​ ​and​ ​start​ ​building​ ​your​ ​future.

​Create​ ​your​ ​blog​ ​and​ ​share​ ​your​ ​voice​ :​ ​ Plug​ ​into​ ​the​ ​biggest​ ​community​ ​of​ ​publishers​ ​online. WordPress.com​ ​has​ ​millions​ ​of​ ​users​ ​waiting​ ​to​ ​find​ ​you.​ ​All​ ​the​ ​features​ ​you​ ​need​ ​and​ ​more. Choose​ ​the​ ​most​ ​popular​ ​blogging​ ​software​ ​on​ ​the​ ​web​ ​for​ ​your​ ​online​ ​home.

So​ ​if​ ​you​ ​have​ ​a​ ​specific​ ​purpose​ ​like​ ​building​ ​an​ ​online​ ​business,​ ​website​ ​is​ ​the​ ​right​ ​choice. It’s​ ​a​ ​common​ ​observation​ ​that​ ​the​ ​niche​ ​sites​ ​(focusing​ ​on​ ​a​ ​specific​ ​topic​ ​like​ ​health​ ​&​ ​fitness, relationships,​ ​self-management,​ ​etc.)​ ​fair​ ​better​ ​than​ ​blogs​ ​from​ ​earning​ ​an​ ​income perspective.

If​ ​not,​ ​and​ ​you​ ​want​ ​to​ ​publish​ ​regularly​ ​or​ ​for​ ​the​ ​sake​ ​of​ ​your​ ​hobby,​ ​then​ ​go​ ​ahead​ ​with​ ​a Blog.​ ​I​ ​am​ ​not​ ​saying​ ​it’s​ ​not​ ​possible​ ​to​ ​monetize​ ​blogs​ ​but​ ​they​ ​just​ ​seem​ ​to​ ​be​ ​secondary​ ​to web-sites.​ ​Websites​ ​though​ ​require​ ​more​ ​planning,​ ​effort​ ​and​ ​time​ ​to​ ​create.​ ​If​ ​unable​ ​to decide​ ​right​ ​now,​ ​don’t​ ​worry!​ ​Even​ ​if​ ​you​ ​start​ ​with​ ​a​ ​Blog​ ​(i.e.​ ​stream​ ​of​ ​your​ ​posts​ ​on​ ​the homepage),​ ​you​ ​can​ ​modify​ ​it​ ​(in​ ​Settings)​ ​easily​ ​to​ ​convert​ ​it​ ​to​ ​a​ ​site​ ​with​ ​a​ ​static​ ​homepage.

Get​ ​your​ ​hands​ ​dirty​

Enough​ ​talking...​ ​Isn’t​ ​it?​ ​Let’s​ ​do​ ​it​ ​now!​ ​ Go​ ​to​ ​WordPress.com​.​ ​Starting​ ​is​ ​fairly​ ​easy.​ ​You​ ​just need​ ​to​ ​click​ ​on​ ​button​ ​’Get​ ​Started​’ ​ ​and​ ​follow​ ​through. I have taken the screen-shots of the steps which you can check by clicking on the image below. It will open a Google Photos album and you will be able to see all the steps I have re-produced below:

Step​ ​1​ ​of​ ​5. Let’s​ ​create​ ​your​ ​new​ ​site. And...​ ​I​ ​choose​ ​‘ Start​ ​with​ ​a​ ​Website’


Step​ ​2​ ​of​ ​5. Choose​ ​a​ ​theme:


I​ ​choose​ ​one​ ​of​ ​the​ ​themes​ ​offered,​ ​named​ ​ Harmonic​ ​ ​–​ ​the​ ​middle​ ​one​ ​in​ ​the​ ​​picture (below) for Step 2. The​ ​offered​ ​themes​ ​may​ ​be​ ​different​ ​at​ ​different​ ​times.​ ​I​ ​don’t​ ​need​ ​to​ ​be​ ​selective​ ​at​ ​this​ ​stage as​ ​I​ ​can​ ​always​ ​change​ ​my​ ​theme​ ​later.​ ​The​ ​themes​ ​shown​ ​here​ ​are​ ​the​ ​free​ ​ones. WordPress.com,​ ​from​ ​time​ ​to​ ​time,​ ​adds​ ​new​ ​themes​ ​to​ ​its​ ​library​ ​of​ ​free​ ​as​ ​well​ ​as​ ​paid (premium)​ ​themes.

Step​ ​3​ ​of​ ​5. ​Let’s​ ​give​ ​your​ ​site​ ​an​ ​address:




I​ ​enter​ ​a​ ​name​ ​in​ ​the​ ​address-box​ ​and​ ​as​ ​you​ ​can​ ​see​ ​in​ ​picture​ for Step 3,​ ​it​ ​lists​ ​the​ ​Free​ ​(the first​ ​one)​ ​sub-domain​ ​address​ ​and​ ​the​ ​custom​ ​domain​ ​options​ ​(with​ ​paid​ ​plans)​ ​below​ ​it,​ ​for which​ ​I​ ​need​ ​to​ ​upgrade.​ ​The​ ​first​ ​few​ ​names​ ​I​ ​entered​ ​were​ ​not​ ​available.​ ​After​ ​trying​ ​a​ ​few times,​ ​I​ ​get​ ​one​​ h2bdemo.wordpress.com​​ ​(just​ ​thought​ ​of​ ​shortening​ ​‘how​ ​to​ ​blog’​ ​and​ ​came up​ ​with​ ​h2b)​ ​available. I​ ​select​ h2bdemo.wordpress.com​ ​and​ ​it’s​ ​still​ ​at​ ​that​ address​.​ You​ ​may​ ​visit​ ​it​ ​too​ ​as​ ​I​ ​thought of​ ​keeping​ ​it​ ​live​ ​for​ ​demo​ ​purposes. Besides I have my new website hosted at wordpress.com: eXperienceBlogging.com.


Step​ ​4​ ​of​ ​5. Pick​ ​a​ ​plan​ ​that’s​ ​right​ ​for​ ​you.​ ​


As​ ​I​ ​mentioned​ ​in​ ​the​ ​WordPress​ ​plans section,​ ​they​ ​may​ ​show​ ​up​ ​in​ ​your​ ​local​ ​currency​ ​instead​ ​of​ ​USD​ ​if​ ​you​ ​are​ ​in​ ​a​ ​different location​ ​and​ ​(may​ ​be)​ ​based​ ​on​ ​the​ ​browser​ ​settings​ ​as​ ​well. I​ ​choose​ ​the​ ​Free​ ​plan​ ​(for​ ​life)​ ​and​ ​go​ ​ahead.​ ​I​ ​can​ ​upgrade​ ​it​ ​later​ ​whenever​ ​I​ ​am​ ​ready.

Step​ ​5​ ​of​ ​5. Create​ ​your​ ​account:


As​ ​you​ ​can​ ​see,​ ​the​ ​username​ ​is​ ​the​ ​sub-domain​ ​(by​ ​default),​ ​I​ ​chose​ ​earlier​ ​in​ ​step​ ​3.​ ​Let​ ​me not​ ​change​ ​it.​ ​I​ ​enter​ ​my​ ​email-id​ ​and​ ​choose​ ​a​ ​password​ ​and​ ​click​ ​on​ ​Create​ ​My​ ​account.


And​ ​Bingo!​ ​It’s​ ​Done​ ​!​ ​Ready​ ​to​ ​go. I​ ​click​ ​on​ Continue​ ​ ​button.​ The blog (or site) is created and ​let us see the next things to expect afterwards. You can see the message 'We are ready for you to get started' and it also suggests to verify the email address provided in step 5. I verify from the mail received in my mail-box and I​ ​click​ ​on​ Continue ​button.​ ​It​ ​takes​ ​me​ ​to​ ​the​ ​WordPress​ ​page​, millions​ ​of​ ​people​ ​have​ ​fallen​ ​in​ ​love​ ​with​ ​and​ ​I​ ​am​ ​no​ ​exception! Please refer to the image below:

WordPress: My​ ​Site Section

There is a ​left​ ​side​ ​menu. You​ ​can​ ​also see​ ​speech​ ​balloon​ ​like​ ​rectangle​ ​welcoming​ ​you​ ​to​ ​WordPress.com. I follow​ ​them​ ​as​ ​it walks​ me​ ​through​ ​important​ ​features​ ​of​ ​the​ ​Editor. At​ ​the​ ​end​ ​of​ ​the​ ​walk-through,​ ​I ​see​ ​my​ ​web-site​ ​in​ ​action.


As​ ​I​ ​am​ ​logged​ ​into​ ​WordPress.com,​ ​you can observe:​
      • a​ ​toolbar​ ​on​ ​top​ ​and​, 
      • a​ ​rectangle​ ​with shortcuts​ ​in​ ​the​ ​bottom​ ​right.​ 
The​ ​toolbar​ ​is​ ​grey or​ ​blue​ ​colour​ ​depending​ ​on​ ​which​ ​screen​ ​you are​ ​into​ ​and​ ​is​ ​called​ ​Admin​ ​bar​. Anybody​ ​who​ ​is​ ​logged​ ​into​ ​WordPress.com​ ​will​ ​see​ ​the​ ​Admin​ ​bar​ ​but​ ​not​ ​the​ ​bottom-right rectangle​ ​as​ ​it​ ​allows​ ​to​ ​make​ ​changes​ ​to​ ​my​ ​site​ ​and​ ​only​ ​I​ ​should​ ​be​ ​able​ ​to​ ​do that.​ ​

This​ ​rectangle​ ​has​ ​shortcut-links​ ​to​ ​the​ ​same​ ​places​ ​we​ ​can​ ​navigate​ ​from​ ​the​ My​ ​Sites​​ ​link in​ ​the​ ​Admin​ ​bar​ ​but​ ​they​ ​come​ ​handy​ ​in​ ​opening​ ​the​ ​current​ ​page​ ​or​ ​post​ ​for​ ​editing​ ​or customizing​ ​the​ ​theme​ ​directly​ ​from​ ​the​ ​site. 

Create​ ​your​ ​first​ ​post​ ​and​ ​publish

At​ ​this​ ​stage,​ ​you​ ​can​​ create​ ​your​ ​first​ ​post​ ​and​ ​publish​​ ​now.​ If you need help, you may like WordPress Learn resource: follow this link. ​Here ​you​ ​will​ ​find some​ ​basics​ ​explained​ ​like​ ​the​ ​difference​ ​between​ ​posts​ ​and​ ​pages,​ ​how​ ​to​ ​upload​ ​an​ ​image, etc.

WordPress.com​ ​has​ ​a​ video​ ​collection​​ ​of​ ​tutorials​ ​helpful​ ​for​ ​beginners.​ Here goes the link. Anytime,​ ​you​ ​need​ ​to see​ ​how​ ​to​ ​do​ ​some​ ​basic​ ​stuff,​ ​you​ ​can​ ​check​ ​it​ ​out.

End Note

You may also like to add​ ​content​ ​to​ ​your​ ​About​ ​page​ ​by​ ​following​ ​the​ ​instructions​ ​in​ ​the​ ​above​ ​link/s,​ if needed or​ ​by​ ​clicking on​ ​About​ ​link​ ​in​ ​the​ ​header​ ​menu​ ​and​ ​clicking​ ​Edit​ ​in​ ​the​ ​bottom-right​ ​rectangle,​ ​which​ ​will open​ ​it​ ​in​ ​the​ ​Edit​ ​mode. Let me end this episode here. If you have followed through, Congrats for creating your new WordPress site! Happy Blogging and Thanks for stopping by!

✧ Disclaimer: My blog posts include reviews of products helpful for bloggers and have affiliate links. In this post, it is WordPress.com. I have purchased, used and tested it thoroughly. I earn commission if you buy a paid plan using the link. Rest assured, it doesn’t cost you extra and you pay the same price. It helps me to fund the costs and time spent on my blog and site. Thanks for using it.

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