How to Start a Travel Blog

Starting a blog is a simple process if you have done it before, and know the lingo. However, for those that are new to working online, starting a blog can be very confusing.

I’ve personally started and ran over 15 websites, and worked for some of the biggest in my country. During this journey, I have learnt a TONNE about blogging and starting websites.

Once you have the process sorted, starting a blog is easy. You can do it without knowing any coding skills, and websites such as this will walk you through the process.

Starting a blog doesn’t require a large amount of technical skills. All thats needed is a little time and minimal effort. Let me begin by setting the scene, and explaining why I am writing this.

How long will this take?

You can complete this guide, up to the installation of WordPress, in about 15 minutes. After that you can take as long as you like to customise your theme to give your blog the look and feel you want.

There are 6 Steps in this guide, all on this one page. You can either bookmark this page now and come back to it over the next few days or weeks as you setup your blog.

Lets get started!

Step 1) Decide your blogging topic

Writing about something you enjoy and are passionate about is MUCH easier then making blogging into a chore, and writing about something that bores you. I highly recommend writing about something you are passionate about.

My first blog made under $1000 in income over its lifetime. It was about how to be anonymous on the internet, something I am not passionate about nor care about. Writing for it, and updating it, was a chore and I lost interest.

The second website I worked on was about action sports – and I LOVED it. I could work 14 hour days and love every minute of it. I did up to $450,000 per year from this website from advertising income and affiliate links. There were two full time employees.

Once you have decided a topic that you are passionate about, move onto Step 2.

You are now 20% Complete! Yes, Deciding the topic is one of the hardest parts of starting a blog. Since you are reading this guide you are likely looking to start a travel blog – so hopefully that made this step easier!
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Step 2) Choose your host

Every website needs to be hosted somewhere. Hosting is where all the files sit on the internet, and your domain name simply directs users to view these files.
There are two main ways to host a blog.
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[fruitful_ibox column=”ffs-two-one” title=”Option 1″]You can use websites like blogger.com or wordpress.com. Both of these are simple to use and quick to get up and running. There are some drawbacks however. Firstly, your domain name will be unprofessional & ugly. For example, my website is TrafficMilk.com. If I used blogger.com my domain name would be trafficmilk.blogger.com. Not sexy is it?[/fruitful_ibox]
[fruitful_ibox column=”ffs-two-one” title=”Option 2″ last=”true”]Secondly, if you spend the time creating a wonderful blog, you should be the owner of it. When using sites like tumblr.com or blogger.com your blog is hosted on another site, and you are not the “owner” of the website. This leaves you open to many issues. What if the actual owner decides to terminate your site if you accidentally breach a policy of there? What if their company goes bankrupt?[/fruitful_ibox][/fruitful_ibox_row]
My recommended hosting option is to look to self host. This gives you 100% flexibility, you can choose your own professional domain name, and there are numerous SEO benefits as well (meaning you will get more visitors to your website). My personal favourite host is Bluehost.  If you get stuck along the process you can message me personally. I know how frustrating it can be your first time.
But self hosting is more expensive isn’t it? Hosting can cost as lost as $7 a month, and the domain name will cost around $10 per year. So all in all, blogging is a very cheap activity to pursue. Read my guide on how to make money from your blog after you have set your own one up, and you will learn how easy it is to make money from you blog, so the costs are negligible.
Ready to Get Hosting Ticked off? Click here to read our Hosting Step by Step Tutorial

You are now 45% Complete! Getting your hosting sorted is one of the main hurdles to starting a blog.
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Step 3) Decide your domain name

This is often the hardest part of the process. Weeks can be spent trying to find the perfect domain. (If you don’t know how to find a domain, visit Godaddy.com as they are cheap and reliable. Type your preferred domain name into the box and check if it is available. I use them, and they cost about $10 a year for a professional .com domain name )

Make your domain name short and catchy. Ensure it is easy to remember, and easy to say. I picked SecretNomads.com because its short and easy to remember. If I say it to someone there is no confusion.  Imaging if I picked something less brandable, such as how-I-began-blogging.net

Firstly, its long and annoying to type out. Secondly, its tough to say.

“Hey Jeff long time no see! You should check out my blog, its domain is how dash I dash began dash blogging dot net!”

Awkward right?

And thirdly, it just looks spammy. Find something brandable. BlogLaunchPad.com would be a better pick if you want to chronicle your journey to begin blogging.

Ready to Get Your Domain Name Sorted off? Click here to read our domain Step by Step Tutorial

You are now 65% Complete! The hardest part of getting a domain is thinking of what to call your blog!
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Step 4) Installing WordPress

Okay so by now you have your hosting account, and you have your domain name. If these were both purchased at the same place, your job is easier. If they are both with different companies, click here to read how to set the nameservers. This is the process of telling your domain name where to look to find your blog files.
The reason I suggest using Bluehost is their fantastic 1-Click Install feature. Thats right, installing WordPress is as easy as 1 Click. Once WordPress is installed, check the domain name you purchase and you will see the default WordPress page sitting there ready to be customized!

Installing WordPress with Bluehost

  1. Navigate to the MOJO Marketplace section inside cPanel.
  2. Click the One-Click Installs icon.
    One-Click Installs
  3. Choose WordPress.
    WordPress Icon
  4. Click the Start button.
    Start a brand new installation
  5. Choose the domain name to install it to.
    Select installation domain

    In the field next to the domain, you can enter a subfolder such as ‘blog’ or leave it blank if you want the site’s main page to be the blog.

  6. If necessary, you can edit the email address, username and password for the new WordPress installation. Click “advanced options” and you can change those settings.
  7. Read through the license and service agreements and check the boxes.
  8. Select the Install Now button.
    Install Now button

You are now 85% Complete! That was the easiest step yet! Bluehost makes installing WordPress simple.
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Step 5) Customizing WordPress

This is the creative part. Its now where you get to put your stamp onto WordPress and make it have the look and feel you are going for.The first stage here is to choose your theme.When starting your own blog there are literally thousands of WordPress Themes to choose from. Themes are made by web developers and set the look and feel of your blog. You can choose either free themes, or pay for a premium theme. It’s 100% up to you. I personally pay for themes, because they are cheap and increase the professionalism of your blog ten-fold.

My favourite place to buy themes is Themeforest.com.
Now that you have your theme, you can install it. Installing a WordPress theme is easy if you have done it before. It’s like riding a bicycle for the first time – it can be frustrating and take a bit of learning, but once you figure it out, its easy to do whenever you feel like it.
The theme you decided to use will no doubt have it’s own installation instructions, so I will just touch on it briefly here.

You are now 100% Complete! Start adding content to your blog. Congratulations.
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Final Words

Starting a blog shouldn’t be a stressful process, and you will actually be surprised how easy and rewarding it can be. The buzz you get when you publish an article and see people from around the world viewing and commenting on it is great!

If you have any advice to help others please let me know in the comments section below!

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