When you are starting to blog you might feel the need to spend more time on unnecessary things because you don’t know it’s unnecessary.
Today’s blog post in the ‘beginner’s blogger tips’ series will discuss what you shouldn’t waste your time on in the beginning.
(Yet I will give options for those of you who are stubborn because sometimes the best way to learn is to feel the burn 😉
Let’s get into it.
Many people get stuck on what type of theme they should get. I was one of those people. I would spend hours looking for the ‘right’ theme for my blog. Because I wanted my blog to look the way the professional blogger’s blogs looked.
I bought themes after themes and have discovered many things people don’t say when promoting the themes.
When you buy a theme you think it’s going to look exactly like it’s being advertised right? Wrong. (If you wonder why check out this post about advertising)
The truth is that your theme is not that important in the beginning. You might think your theme sucks, but if you choose a free theme on WordPress, it will do just fine.
But uhmmm. Is it free?
Just because something is free doesn’t mean that no work went into creating it. Professional people got paid actual money to make the ‘free WordPress themes. WordPress choose the best out of the lot. Remember WordPress is also a business competing against other blogger businesses such as Blogspot and so will try to give good themes, even if it’s free.
If you have the money to buy an epic theme, one that captured your heart, go ahead. But if you are broke AF. The free WordPress themes will do.
If the theme is not important then what is?
A theme that will do for now. WordPress has many themes. Pick the one you like and start blogging.
I get that you want your blog to look professional. But that might take a while. What you don’t know is after you bought the perfect theme, your blog will not actually look like the theme you bought.
Why do I say that? When people advertise themes, they use the ultimate professional pictures, layout, font etc. The engineers are trained in what pictures work with what font etc. Yes, it’s an occupation.
You probably already tried the themes and consider to buy a theme.
If you are stuck on buying the right theme before you start, first ‘try out’ the theme. WordPress let’s you try out the theme before you make it public.
To try out a theme before using/buying it do this:
Go to the top left of your page and click My sites and click on themes. (Not on customize, if you click customize it will open a window for you to customize your current blog theme. If you click on themes it will show you all the themes WordPress has)
Then this page will appear. Type in what you blog about. (I used the word Blogging. ) I chose the theme The parisian.
Then this page will appear. Click ‘Open Live demo’ (Do not click activate design, because that will make the design you choose activate without editing it)
Then this page will appear. Click ‘Try & customize’
Go to the top left corner of the page. Play around with the colors and styles. Like it? Click save and activate on the top left. If it’s free, you are free to go. If it’s for sale, take out your credit card 🙂
Considering a paid theme?
See how your content fits, with your pictures. Does the theme still look as fancy? Or do you see white spaces where there is not supposed to be white spaces because it didn’t look like that on the theme?
Companies who sell themes usually have 24/7 support. Even though sometimes you might have to wait for a technician to get back to you.
The good companies will actually help you… over the phone. Then you have to figure it out by yourself. Are you tech savvy? Do you have time to spend on waiting? Are you procrastinating on writing that blog post? These are things to think about.
I bought cheap themes and expensive themes, and after all of that I find myself right back at the WordPress Zoren theme. A lot of money and time wasted, but knowledge acquired.
Pick a theme you like, move on and start working on your blog’s content.
Themes will always be there
After you’ve published some post, you can always get back to finding the perfect theme. Just be warned the perfect theme doesn’t exist, because as you grow, your blog will grow and your taste will grow. Finding one theme that will last for all eternity is a near impossible task.
Your domain name
When the internet was made available to the public in 1991 a good domain name was very important. Google’s search engine would favor your website because of your domain name. But in this present time, 2017, it no longer does that. The internet has evolved and so will you.
However, if you want the perfect domain name that reflects what your blog is about, go ahead.
Time yourself. Searching for the perfect domain name might be a sign of procrastinating.People will ultimately come to your blog for your content and not for the domain name.
How much is a new domain name?
If your domain name is 69sexhottie.wordpress.com and you have met Jesus and want to change, then the price for a new domain is:
WordPress: $18 per year
Bluehost: $2.95 per month
GoDaddy: Depends on what extension you want. Example: .com, .org
When I said that I’ve been blogging for 7years and made a lot of mistakes, I was not kidding. I think that’s why I can write this beginner blogger series so honestly. I know better now.
What do I use?
Currently, I’m using WordPress domain. http://www.chantaldegeus.com
Here’s how to get it.
Click on ‘My sites’ on the top left corner of your blog and click on ‘Domains’
Click on ‘Domans’ and then ‘Add domain’. Choose the name you want. Finish.
I’ve used Bluehost two years ago. I had some problems and called them. They did their best over the phone but I was not tech savvy enough (Even though I had computer as a subject in high school for 5years and 1year of software engineering at university)
So I took the easier road, which for me was WordPress. My blog was already on this platform and getting a new domain name was one click away.
Godaddy I used for a business I started in 2011. I bought the domain name, it was live but that’s all I can tell you because I didn’t understand the blogging world yet, I thought one year of software engineering was enough to write my own online clothing website, how naive I was.
If you are considering Godaddy then make sure that the name you pick is your actual name.
Example: I searched for chantaldegeus.com (I knew it wouldn’t exist since I have it)
They gave me something very close. If I didn’t read carefully I could’ve ended up with chantaldesgeus.com An extra ‘s’ that’s not in my surname.
I can laugh at all of this now, but back then it was frustrating because I’ve tried my best but felt like I got nowhere. So if you are feeling frustrated, I know the feeling. I’m happy I persisted and after 7 years I can blog for a living.
The only service I mentioned but haven’t used is the Name.com website. My one blogger friend told me it works. I cannot say if it works or not. Just thought I’d throw it in there for those of you who are broke AF.
I hope this helps! If you learned anything in this post, please comment below 🙂 Any questions?
If you enjoyed this blog post, here’s more of my post for beginner bloggers.
(PS: Congrats! You’ve read 1390 words, 7458 characters in about 5minutes)