How To Start a Blog

Start a Blog

Disclosure: this page contains affiliate links. This means if you click on a link and make a purchase, we will receive an affiliate commission.

5 years ago when we retired in our 30s to travel the world, we started blogging so friends and family could join the journey. Unexpectedly, that small group grew to tens of thousands of people. Even more unexpectedly, blogging income grew from zero to sufficiently large to pay all of our travel bills.

Is that intriguing? This detailed guide will help you get started with a shiny new blog of your own.

How to Start a Blog

Getting started is actually very quick and easy. You could have your new blog up and running today. Let’s get started.

1. Choose a Memorable Name

A memorable name is important. This is your brand. When people are looking through a list of blogs in your target niche, which one will they click on first…

My money blog
Another money blog
Go Curry Cracker!
Yet another money blog
My blog about money

2. Getting Your Blog On the Web

A new website needs a place to host all of the blog posts and photos so people around the world can see what you are sharing. Think of it as renting a room to store your stuff.

I’ve been using Bluehost since day 1 and couldn’t be happier. Even when this site was simultaneously on the front page of Forbes and Yahoo, Bluehost handled it like a champ.

Prices start at less than $4/month, less than a fancy beverage at Starbucks. And if you signup via links on this page, you get a free domain name (a $15 value.)

Step 1 – Get Started Now

Head over to the Bluehost page and click on that big green “get stared now >” button.

Step 2 – Pick a Plan

Go Curry Cracker! has been on the basic plan for 4 years and counting.

shared-hosting-plansStep 3 – Reserve Your Domain Name (Blog Name)

Enter your blog name in the “new domain” box on the left. If our blog name is unique and memorable, it should be available.

Start a BlogStep 4 – Register and Pay the Bill

Congratulations, you are a new business owner. Enter all of your ownership details now. The mailing address can be your Traveling Mailbox.

Start a Blog

Be sure to include Domain Privacy Protection. This prevents random people on the Internet from knowing your name, email address, and mailing address. (Well worth it!)

Be sure to use the best credit card for getting points for future free travel!

Start a Blog

Step 5 – Create a Bluehost Password

We’ll need a password for later if we need to change some stuff behind the scenes. Click on “create your password”


Create your Bluehost password now (they have very strict password requirements.) I use the free version of  LastPass to manage this. It generates secure passwords and is a real help for seldom used passwords like this one.

Start a Blog

Step 6 – Install WordPress

WordPress is the most popular tool for blogging and is what we use on Go Curry Cracker! It’s also Free. Because it is so popular, there is an army of WordPress experts on Fiverr who can help in the future for only $5.

But let’s do our own WordPress install for free.

First login to Bluehost with the username and password you just created at

This brings you to the screen shown here, which has the fancy name of cpanel. It looks complicated, but don’t worry… all you need to do is find the Website Builders header and click on WordPress.

Start a Blog

From here, click the green “Start a brand new install” button.

Start a BlogChoose your blog name and then click the green Check Domain button.

Start a Blog
Click the “show advanced options” checkbox and enter an email address and password. This is the admin account for you blog, which is separate from the Bluehost account created above. You will use this email/password a lot.

Now click “Install Now
Start a Blog
The installation may take a few minutes.
Start a BlogInstall Complete!

16-install-completeYour site is now LIVE! Congratulations! How easy was that?

4. Site Design and Content Creation

We are now ready to make our new blog look nice and create our first post.

Step 1 – Login to your new site

Login to your new site at
Use the admin username & password you just created during the install process. This will bring you to the control center of your new blog, called the Dashboard.

This will bring you to the control center of your new blog, called the Dashboard.
Start a Blog

Step 2 – Pick a Theme

At present your new blog is very empty and basic. We make it look nice by adding a theme.

There are a ton of free themes available, or you can get something from a pro design company like Elegant Themes. We use their Divi theme and it is fantastic!

To choose a theme, select Appearance and Themes in the left side bar. Click Add New and find one that appeals to you, then click Activate.

You can try out at many as you like, and nothing is permanent. It is just like trying on a few pairs of clothes.

Start a Blog

Step 3 – Publish Your First Post!

Now we just need to publish our first post! On the left sidebar select Posts and Add New.

Enter a title (“Welcome to my new blog!”), add some content (“blah blah blah”) and then click Publish. That’s it. Congrats, you are a blogger!

When I wrote my first post I didn’t know anything. We all have to start somewhere. Try new things, make mistakes, get messy… it’s part of the fun!

Start a Blog

5. Plugins & Services

Now that your site is up and running, there are a few additional tools (Plugins) and Services that make blogger life easier. These are all tools that I use.


To add a Plugin, in the Dashboard’s left sidebar select Plugins and Add New. Bluehost makes it easy to install as many plugins as we need.

This alphabetical list will get you started. All are free. Search for the plugin name on the plugin page of your Dashboard.

  • Akismet – Akismet protects your blog from spam. It is critical!
  • Link Within – provides recommendations for additional content to your readers
  • Pretty Link Lite – easy to use manager for affiliate links
  • Sociable – makes it easy for your readers to share your content
  • TablePress – tool for creating and managing tables.
  • Updraft Plus – regular backups are really important! We backup to the free version of Dropbox.
  • WP Super Cache – when your site hits the front page of Yahoo, this will help prevent your server from crashing.
  • Yoast SEO – this provides guidance for search engine optimization. This will increase traffic from Google, etc…


We use all of these services. Some of them cost $ and only increase in price as your traffic increases.

6. Social Media

Create accounts for your blog on the most popular social media sites. This makes it easy for your readers to view and share your content.

We are presently on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram.

It is also important to start an email list, ideally from Day 1. A ton of people prefer to subscribe to blogs via email. We use ConvertKit to manage our email lists.

7. Start Blogging

You are now the proud owner of a shiny new blog.

When I wrote my first post I didn’t know anything. We all have to start somewhere. Try new things, make mistakes, get messy… it’s part of the fun!

Go get ’em tiger! And enjoy this special offer just for Team Curry Cracker.

Any questions? Ask in the comments. I’ll help if I can.

Fiverr is also a good place to get WordPress help.


  1. kind of lost ⚒ (@kindoflost)

    Hey I am finally getting started. This list is very helpful. What’s the plug in to enable comments from social media in this comment box?
    Thanks and happy new year!

  2. joelsuf

    So I just made my website, its unusually complicated. I keep trying (and failing) to add links to the sidebar. It’s quite overwhelming. Anything I can do? In my other wordpress page where I don’t have a host I can do this instantly. On the one where I am hosted I can’t even log in to post in the help forums. What gives?

    • Go Curry Cracker

      Sorry, I’m not sure if I completely understand.
      Normally, a sidebar link is placed in a text widget. See here.

      It took me some time to get familiar with wordpress too. It’s just part of the normal learning process.

      • joelsuf

        Yeah, I’ll just keep messing with it. I’m sure there its real obvious and easy and I’m just making it complicated haha.

        Thank you for the response anyways. You may want to let readers know that bluehost charges you for each and every month in the package. That happened to me and I was like “wait a minute, I wanted to prepay it all LATER, not now!” But its cool.

  3. Tabitha

    Any thoughts on using other blog platforms – like Blogger?

    • Go Curry Cracker

      Not really… wordpress is the biggest and most widely supported.

  4. Shawn DeVooght

    so whats ur opinion of spi? I’m not very tech savvy and they seem like for a little money they make it a little easier, whats ur opinion

    • Go Curry Cracker

      I’m not familiar with it, sorry

  5. Ben

    This is actually perfect timing. I have been using blogger for the past couple of years just to share travel trips with family and friends and find it pretty limiting. Thanks! On another note have you ever thought about adding forums to your blog or does that juts open up another can of worms?

    • Go Curry Cracker

      I intend to add a forum, but haven’t had the time to get it setup.

  6. Mr. Hammocker

    Great article. Starting a blog shouldn’t be a complicated thing. It definitely takes some learning, though. I recently started my blog this past year. It takes patience to get a loyal following. Thanks for all of the inspiration!

    • Michael CPO

      Any favorite tips on promoting your blog … from a 3-4 week blogger … CPO

  7. Paul K

    Hey there!

    Could all of this be done from a Google Chromebook?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Go Curry Cracker

      Yes. All you need is a browser

  8. Kristen VanDewall

    I just did the bluehost thing and am trying to get the blog set up – this might be a stupid question – what does bluehost do exactly? I just gave them my money so probably too late to ask.

    • Go Curry Cracker

      Bluehost operates and maintains the computer server that your new website runs on.

      They do have a 30-day money back guarantee, so not too late if you change your mind.

  9. Be there soon

    Sharing these tips and setup steps is very nice of you to do. Thank you.

  10. Michael

    You mention Dropbox as a backup option for you website, do you have any feelings on other Cloud based options such Microsoft OneDrive … Google Drive … Apple …. ? Would they all be pretty much be fine? …. I like your family and travel stories as part of the mix … perhaps a bit more on your techie preferences … God Bless, Beijing :)

    • Go Curry Cracker

      When I first started using Updraftplus they only had support for Dropbox. I believe they’ve expanded support for other online storage options. I figure they are all basically the same

  11. Michael

    Hi GCC – well I clicked through on your Bluehost thingy … and am officially a two week old blogger … still learning what buttons to push? :) … it takes boatloads of time to start up … but now is getting faster and smoother … below is my practice experimental baby step blog attempt … I am using it as practice one and will later set up 5 blogs? … the next one on international living … (name already taken) … but seems like a wider net and audience then the below one …. and I have been overseas for 19ish years … love how you set up your site … and so have modelled mine a bit on yours and others … also a book called WordPress To Go on Amazon by Sarah McHarry … will receive in a few weeks Bloggers for Dummies …. and WordPress etc … will see how those go :) … How you handle affiliate stuff too is very useful for reference … I like how you only plug stuff you support or use like Personal Capital, BlueHost, Amazon etc … I use VPN links from all over the world seeing I live behind the Great FireWall of C…… … the link will now say I am in Germany … but am actually in Asia etc etc etc …. got a Great !!!! deal from BlueHost via your site …. so thanks for that again …. I think it was $2 buck plus per month for 3 years ? …. maybe it was $2.95 … I forget … anyway From the Far Side of the Planet :)

  12. Ewelina Snyder

    Hello. My husband and I follow your blog and love it! Great tips and advice. Thanks! Question… I myself have started a blog with wordpress and did the $8/month plan to get a domain name. Do I still need to get bluehost in order to keep my blog going? (I do have a free blog as well dedicated to my sister but with that one, I’m not looking to monetize it.) I am only looking to see where things go with this newest blog. Thanks!

    • Go Curry Cracker

      If you are using the paid wordpress option you don’t also need Bluehost.

  13. David

    Hey GCC, what are you using to secure the site? Sitelock? Is it necessary if I only have affiliate links? Any suggestions? Thanks for the links!

    • Go Curry Cracker

      I don’t use anything.

  14. Smart 5 Solutions

    WordPress and Bluehost are perfect option for a startup blog. Informative post indeed. Thanks for Sharing!!

  15. Trippe

    All this is the easy part! I started a blog at 67 recently! The hard part is to not become discouraged. And how to publicize you site. It seems to me it takes years to get success so I don’t have that long I am afraid. But still trying this out!

  16. Dave

    Like most of what I’ve read on here this is amazingly helpful and simple, so thank you. I would love to know if you’ve detailed the process you used to get business official with your blog? LLC or similar? Business steps used to qualify the business aspect of your blog for tax purposes, etc? This is my favorite of all the personal finance blogs!

    • Go Curry Cracker

      I did nothing, which is all that is required. The IRS appreciates if you use separate bank accounts for business. Open a checking account at a credit union for zero fees, and use a business credit card with a signup bonus.

  17. Ewelinka

    Hello. My husband and I love your blog. Thanks for sharing these tips. I am in my first year of blogging and because I’m so passionate about cooking, I have a cooking blog. I have about 15 posts so far but I started and that counts, right :) I have wordpress and plug ins cost so that’s a bummer. If you’re on a business plan ($25/month) then plug ins would be included. Oh well. For now, I’m focusing on just posting recipes daily and doing my best to attract followers. Thanks for your advice.

  18. Skip

    Hi Jeremy:

    I was just wondering if the basic plan is still meeting your needs.

    • Go Curry Cracker

      I changed to a higher end plan a year or two ago at around $10/month. I run this blog, Winnie’s blog, and the forum on that.

  19. Chip

    Thank you for the detailed instructions. I started my blog a few month ago. Do you have any recommendations for a blogging forum or some resources to learn more about blogging?


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *