The next step to creating your blog is picking out a theme. If you’ve chosen Bluehost, after you’ve gone through the installation process, you’ll be prompted to purchase a premium theme. Don’t let them fool you. This is not a requirement for starting your blog. I’m not sure how Hostgator does this but being a sister company to Bluehost, I’m thinking they likely have a similar scheme. Godaddy has its own website building tool so I honestly have no idea how they operate once you’ve purchased everything that you need to. If you see a theme that you love, by all means, buy that jam.
There’s a ton of free themes out there. Some will come with WordPress. You can also find free themes at websites like https://colorlib.com/wp/free-wordpress-themes/ . These kinds of sites go on for days. A quick google search is going to provide a nearly infinite amount of choices. The best part of having a free theme is that it’s free. The free vs. premium argument pretty much ends there. For the single best post that I’ve ever seen on themes, check out the link below.
Disclosure: I am a studiopress affiliate. At no cost to you, I will make a commission on any sales that are directly referred to studiopress from The Newbie Blogger.
As you shop for premium themes, you’re going to see a phrase that keeps popping up over and over again. That phrase is “genesis framework”. A framework is the foundation, if you will, of the WordPress site while the “child” is what goes over top of the framework, kind of like a blanket. Essentially, it’s what makes your website pretty. I highly suggest using the Genesis framework as well as studiopress for all of your theme needs. Here’s why:
http://www.wpbeginner.com/blueprint/genesis-framework/ – What I want you to pay attention to in this article is this: “The Genesis Framework provides us with a secure and search-engine-optimized foundation for our websites.”
SEO is search engine optimization. This is a term that you’re going to become very familiar with as you continue on your blogging journey. It’s going to get interesting, then boring, and then you’ll learn to hate it. Eventually, you’ll accept its importance and move on. SEO is used to rank websites. All the websites. If you have any intention or desire to have your site on the first page of those Google rankings, then SEO should always be in your thoughts.
Does that mean that non-genesis sites aren’t going to be as noticeable to google? No. However, Genesis gives you an edge right out of the box. For anyone looking to rise through those google ranks quickly, this is certainly something to keep in mind. Here’s one last article that’s worth a read:
If you have decided to go the Genesis route, I’ve included a tutorial for you to watch. It’s super easy to get it loaded up on your site.
Once you’ve put some thought into your theme, everything is uploaded and looking great, it’s time to start writing. Write a few articles and get them loaded on to your site. Take a day or two to make any changes as far as cosmetics. Once everything looks exactly the way you want it to, it’s time to write hard and write often.
Keep checking in with our blog to see tutorials on free blogging platforms and tips on how to monetize and market your new website.