After working 16 years in the IT (before my travels), I have luckily a lot of experience, knowledge and technical background to know what’s needed to start a website, as well as how to setup a blog website. First you will get a quick overview and further below you will get a detailed step by step instruction guide on how to start and configure a blog website.
How to setup a blog website
One important thing is that you have a good and reliable host. After I have made a lot of comparisons and research I have figured out that SiteGround is one of the top hosts, especially for (WordPress) blogs. Their support is incredible fast and helpful in case you need it.
If you use my SiteGround discount link you can get web hosting for as low as $3.95 per month.
Blog Setup Time
Even you read almost everywhere how easy and fast it is to setup a website/blog, that’s not exactly true. It is fast to do the registration at the hosting provider and installing the blank WordPress, but that’s the only thing which goes quick. For most standard users it will take a lot of time to get familiar with WordPress and with your theme (especially if you use an advanced one) and to customize it until you get the look and functions you want.
How to setup a website – Quick overview
- Before you start with anything you have to come up with a name for your brand or website (Happy Face Traveller) and at the same time it will be your domain name. Make sure your brand name is still available as domain name as well.
- Setup your domain name (either set it up yourself at godaddy.com on example or nowadays it is included in many web hosting services already.
- Order your web hosting on siteground.com
- Choose your website creation tool (in our case WordPress) and install it.
- Make the 21 important things you must do after installing WordPress
- Install the Top 14 WordPress Plugins
- Install a WordPress Theme. There are many free themes available, but I recommend to use a paid theme, as they have more functionalities and guaranteed support.
- Create new pages like Home, About, Contact.
- Start writing your blog posts and post, post, post.
Website setup procedure
Select and setup your web hosting
When you have chosen your brand or website name you can start with the whole technical process.
- You have to choose a suitable web host where you want to install WordPress. Therefore, order your web hosting (and domain name) on siteground.com
- Chose your Hosting Service. I recommend to chose the 36 months period plan, as it is the cheapest at the end.
- Verify your domain name (you will get an verification email)
- You will get another mail to “Set your domain data use consent preferences”
General settings in the cPANEL after setting up the web hosting
- Login to your SiteGround dashboard www.siteground.com -> Login
- Important: enable SSL/https for a secure connection –> https://www.siteground.com/tutorials/getting-started/configure-ssl-with-one-click/
- Activate the free Cloudflare CDN to optimize your site speed. –> My account -> CDN -> access -> new site opens -> Activate. Follow the steps you will get by email. CDN is needed to optimize the speed of your website.
- Add an SiteGround FTP account or check the credentials from an existing one
Create email accounts/addresses on SiteGround
- Click on “Mail” -> “Email Accounts”
- Choose your email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) -> enter your desired password -> set mailbox quota (max. mailbox size depends on your SiteGround plan) -> create account
- Login to your new webmail -> choose one of the three webmail client (I recommend Horde) -> Settings -> Preferences -> Global Preferences -> enter the name you want to show to your recipients when they receive an email from you in the “your full name”
- cPanel: set forwarders to another email account if you want (therefore you don’t need to manage several mail accounts). “Mail” -> “Forwarders” -> Add Forwarder -> enter your mail address -> enter the destination address –> add forwarder
In case you need more indepth information, check out the SiteGround eMail creation tutorial
Choose your website creation tool
The number one tool nowadays for blogs and many websites is wordpress.org.
Surely you have heard of WordPress, it is a free software to create a website/CMS (Content Management System). To expand the functionalities of your website, there exist many free and paid extensions, so called Plugins.
How to Install WordPress with just a few clicks
- Login to your SiteGround dashboard.
- Open your cPanel: My Accounts -> Go to cPanel
- cPanel -> Softaculous -> WordPress –> Install (for more details you can also check the SiteGround WordPress Installation Guide)
- Protocol: httpS://www.
- Choose your domain (yourdomain.com)
- Enter your site name and site description
- Enter yours desired admin username, password and email address.
- Select “limit login attempts” plugin. This will protect your site from brute force attacks by limiting the numbers of login attempts.
- Easy Setup – WordPress Starter: unselect the checkbox, as this will install some unnecessary plugins.
- Click on advanced: Change DB name and table prefix-> replace the letters “wp” with whatever you want. On example HFT
- Hit the Install button and after a few seconds WordPress is installed and you are ready to go
21 things you must do after installing WordPress
Configure your WordPress and do all the important settings. Important: Check out the complete 21 things you must do after installing WordPress guide for detailed instruction.
- Create a new admin user
- Change the public shown display name
- Set correct email address
- Review or change the site title and tag line.
- Set the correct time zone
- Disable user registration
- Delete pre-installed content and plugins
- Change the Search Engine Visibility, Number of blog posts on blog roll page, summary of blog post or whole post on your blog roll, Configure the layout type of your home page
- Change the permalinks structure (very important!)
- Change the Media settings
- Check and maybe change the discussion/comments settings
- Select the “Show comments cookies opt-in checkbox”.
- Unselect the avatar options for comments
- Create new categories and rename the “uncategorized” category
- Set default post category
- Add a Favicon
- Install all the WordPress plugins you need. Check the Top 14 WordPress Plugins article to find out more detailed information on which WordPress plugins you should install.
- Install a WordPress Theme
- Configure your Google analytics plugin for an easy overview
- Create a sitemap
- 21 things you must do after installing WordPress
- Top 14 WordPress Plugins
- Brief SEO Overview
- Why you should have a Sitemap
- Ultimate Web Design Services