Guide to Starting a Blog
How to Setup a Blog That You Can Earn Money From
(You can do this in 15 minutes or less and with very little technical experience required)
We're here to tell you that anyone can start a blog...

Yes, even if you barely know what a web browser is.

If you aren't already sold on the idea, maybe this serves as validation...

For one, it’s your home on the web.

Believe it or not, people care what you have to say. There are people out there interested in what you are interested in.

You can skip the story and cut right to step #1 of the blog setup by clicking here...

You can turn what you love into a business and take this as large as you can imagine.

But, let's start with the truth about blogging...

There are a million different ways to do it and a million different people telling you they have the best way.

Guess what? You've arrived upon one of those ways!

What makes this different, however, is that we don't just use it for ourselves. work with many successful bloggers.

We get to see the tools they use. How they built their site. The behind the scenes. Here's a common pattern most follow...

The overwhelming majority use WordPress.

Here's three reasons why WE like WordPress:

Reason #1: WordPress is free

The software is state of the art and they literally give you for free to download with updates for life.

Reason #2: WordPress is easy

Most people can get a grip of it really quickly. You can be up and running in minutes.

This works much like a cell phone. You have plugins and themes. 

Plugins are like apps you download. 

They control the function of your site. Like if you wanted to get your blog ranked in the search engines, there is a plugin for that.

Themes are like the look of your site. 

Some are free and some you pay for. It's like a plug and play website design that you can customize to your liking. 

Reason #3: You can do virtually anything with WordPress

Things like building on online store, a membership site, or even a place to collect donations.

Okay, this next part can get slightly confusing.

Not all WordPress is created equal.

WordPress has two versions. Two? Yes, two.

WordPress.com where you just sign up for the website (like you do on Facebook) and start a blog. This is more for hobbyists and if you do NOT want to use if you want to earn a income from your blog.

Why?

You are limited to the themes and plugins you can add to your site, as well as being able to sell and advertise. 

Might not be a concern of yours off the bat, but for the cost of one cup of coffee per month, you save yourself many future headaches from switching sites.

That's when those people switch to the second version of WordPress, WordPress.org.

You get free unlimited access to the software. You download it and add to your own web hosting account. 

Your hosting account is your digital hard drive. It costs you just under $4 per month and it's where your website files are stored online.

To set this up, it takes just three easy steps and about 20 minutes to have your blog up and running.

Grab a coffee and let's get your blog up and running...

The Ultimate Blog Setup Guide: Part 1
Picking the Perfect Domain Name

Your domain name is how people find you on the web.

To get started, your going to head over to HostGator

(link opens in a new window)

HostGator you can use both for buying a domain and your web hosting.

Out of all hosting companies, they have been around for a very long time, use green energy, and have great customer service you can get on a call with.

We've also negotiated on your behalf a 50% discount for the LTB community. So, just click the big "Start Your Site Now!" button and you are on your way.

First you need to choose a domain.

If you have one, click right to the "I Already Own This Domain" tab.

If you need to register a new one, best to keep it simple. 

Use your name or your company name. Although it is preferred to get a .com, you can find so many different dot whatever extensions you can use if you cannot find the name your are looking for.

You can also try something like .me or .net.

When you find a domain you like, you will also see an option to add on privacy. This is optional. We suggest you get it.

When you buy a domain, your information you sign up with goes on public record. This blocks that from happening.

And that is it!

If you already own a domain name, HostGator will email you instructions upon purchase to change your nameservers.

This means you go back to the company you bought the domain name from and you change the nameservers to the what HostGator provides you.

Your domain registrar can help you with this if you get stuck.

The Ultimate Blog Setup Guide: Part 2
Signing Up For Your Hosting Account

Your web hosting is the place where your website files will live.

It is the place where you will install WordPress (more on that in a moment).

Once this is setup once, you won't have to mess with it much. You can just login to your blog from any web browser to manage your site.

When you sign up for a hosting account through HostGator using this guide, you also get a $100 free credit to advertise on Google.

A sweet bonus you can use this to get traffic to your blog.

When it comes to choosing a plan, you can get the lowest price by paying your hosting in advance. 

We like to not worry about a monthly bill to pay.

If your budget allows, go with the longer term and you can save money and not have to worry about paying a monthly bill. 

If you plan on having more than one blogs, you will want to choose the Baby plan.

Otherwise stick with the Hatchling will do just fine for you (you can always upgrade later if needed).

HostGator will also offer you a few other customization options. 

These not required to setup your blog and you can do fine without them. 

You can leave all these boxes unchecked.

Or, if those offers sound good to you, feel free to indulge.

Next you will see the coupon box. 

This should come prefilled with "learntoblog," which is the most valuable coupon HostGator offers.

Do not make any changes to this or it will remove your discount.

The last step in the process is to fill out your billing information and review your order. 

For around $125, your blog is worry free and covered for 3 years with a company you can trust.

Click the big "Checkout Now" button and you have officially purchased your hosting account.

You are in business!

The Ultimate Blog Setup Guide: Part 3
Installing Your New WordPress Blog

Now on to the fun stuff.

It's time to check your email because HostGator just sent your login information to your hosting account.

We'll wait right here as you go locate that email from them.

From:[email protected]

Subject: HostGator.com :: Your Account Info

You will want to login to your hosting account and here is what you will see.

NOTE:

If you are using a domain that you already own, you will need to take those two nameservers in this email back to where you bought your domain.

You will need to login to that account and update your nameservers with these two that are provided. If you need support with that, please contact the company you purchased your domain from.

Click the link to login to your Control Panel.

This is where you will manage your hosting account. For the most part, everything will be handled within WordPress once you have it installed.

But, this is what you will see when you login...

Click the icon for WordPress Installer.

With your WordPress Installer up, chose your domain name from the drop down menu and press next.

Then just fill out these five fields and click install!

Your blog will be instantly up and running.

HostGator will then display your login URL (which will be something like http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin).

Bookmark this login page.

You will go here with your username and password to login and manage your blog. 

Write this information down or use something like 1Password to securely store it.

When you login to your account, you will see your brand new blog and can begin to add a theme, add plugins, and add content to your site.

There are plenty of tutorials on YouTube to learn how to get familiar with your WordPress interface.

But, if you want to learn how to customize a blog for a premium design and features without it costing an arm and a leg, we're putting together a new tutorial for that.

It will talk about our favorite theme and plugins we use to grow a following.

Enter your information below and we will send you it when it's ready along with a free gift from us.

Thanks for following this tutorial and welcome.

You are officially a blogger!

Congratulations! You've Completed the Blog Setup Guide!
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