In this step-by-step guide, you will be able to know how to create a website from scratch can be easier than you think. It’s not complicated or expensive, and you will be able to do it on your own with a developer.
Creating an online presence is a daunting challenge. With the world moving in ever-increasing numbers towards what is called the “new digital age”, people are looking to get their websites up and running to stay ahead of their competitors.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a photographer, florist, bookworm, or want to be a fashion blogger: if you want to run your own business and make money online, you’re going to need a website.
There are so many different routes and software available but it can be overwhelming trying to find the best one for you. This beginner’s guide will hopefully demystify the process, guiding you through all the necessary steps to create a website from scratch in under two hours.
We’re an affiliate: This website contains affiliate links. If you click on any links and make a purchase, I will earn a commission at no extra cost to you. For more info, click here.
Why Create A Blogger Website?
Before we get into the step-by-step guide, you might wonder if it’s still worth it to create a website from scratch and start a blog, but the answer is simple: there are always opportunities in digital marketing.
There are over 500 million active blogs, which is expected to increase. There are 7 million articles posted daily from these active blogs. Who says you too can’t be a part of that number?
Blogging is quickly becoming one of the most popular hobbies around the world. But it does not just have to be a hobby, it can also mean new beginnings and opportunities for a better life.
A blog is a great way to share your thoughts, knowledge, and expertise with the world. Blogging can also help you build your online presence and establish yourself as an expert in your field.
Having an email subscriber list you are able to connect with a targeted audience. There are many types of sites out there, such as E-commerce, Shopify, etc.
However, if you’re completely new at starting a business online – or don’t know where to start – it’s best to create a website.
From there, as you gain experience, confidence, and traffic you can expand your website.
One of the great reasons to become a blogger is that it can become your full-time job. Being able to work for yourself and have time for yourself and your family.
Step 1: Account Security
All the software and platforms you are going to subscribe to will need you to create an account.
When creating your usernames and passwords for these accounts, make sure:
- They are complicated
- Usernames should never be your name and surname unless it’s required.
- Both your usernames and passwords should be long (at least between 10-15 characters), have uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and if allowed, punctuation marks.
Complicated usernames and passwords protect your accounts from becoming hacked. Beware you will have many, many usernames and passwords you are going to need to remember.
To keep track of your usernames and passwords, you have 2 options:
Roboform is a subscription-based company that allows you to save all your passwords securely in one place.
They also help with password generation and they use a single-click login method to make your life easier. No more having to type out your entire username and password every time you need to log in to any of your accounts.
You can start using Roboform with major browsers such as Mac, IOS, android, and windows. You can also access your passwords offline.
Option 2: Write your passwords down.
This is not the most ideal or secure way but it is cost-effective if you are on a budget. Once you start earning, then you can switch to option 2.
Create a table with the name of the company, username, email address, and password you used to create the account. Each time you create a new account, you will add those account details to your table.
Many companies, not all, have the option to add 2-factor authentication. I highly recommend you use this feature as it adds that extra layer of security when logging in to your accounts. It’s super easy to set up and convenient to use.
Step 2: Banking
Many of the subscriptions you will be paying for monthly or yearly don’t always allow you to pay through PayPal but rather with a Credit Card.
Option 1: If you are under the age limit to be eligible for a credit card, then you will need a parent or someone willing to use their credit card to pay for your subscriptions and you pay them back.
Option 2: Many people think that having a credit card means that you have to be working, this is not accurate.
The bank will be more interested in your income, not your occupation. However, you will have to be earning enough to be eligible to have a credit card.
If you do earn an income but not enough, your 2nd option would be to ask a family member or friend you trust and who has a good credit score to co-sign your application.
Option 3: This option is for those over the age of 18, who can’t find someone to co-sign their application or who earn no income.
Your best option in this case and my favorite option is to apply for an app-based bank account such as N26. Some of their best features include:
- A visa debit card that operates like a credit card except unlike a credit card, you can only spend money that you have deposited. Similar to a debit card.
- There are no hidden costs. This means there are no overseas transaction charges, no minimum balance or maintenance fee.
- The signup process is super easy and can be done at home online.
- You are eligible to send and receive payments, connect the card to your PayPal account and so much more.
Unfortunately since January 18, 2022, N26 is no longer available in the US as they are focusing more on their European business. You do have the option for other similar app-based banks including Revolut, Chime, and Skrill.
Step 3: Choosing Your Niche
If you didn’t know, this is THE most important step in your planning process so don’t skip this step unless you have already done some planning and have already chosen your niche.
In order to create a website from scratch you need to take a few moments (to be honest, it took me a few days) to think about what your niche is going to be.
Essentially your niche will be your blog’s topic so anything and everything you write about on your blog will be based on the topic you have chosen.
Don’t take this step lightly or rush through it because it will be your bread and butter. It’s crucial to always have an idea of what your blog is going to be about before starting. Trust me, you don’t want this!
The list of niches (topics) you can choose is endless. Make sure whatever you do decide, you enjoy that niche because you are going to have to write about it.
The more people interested in the niche, the more potential customers you have.
A professional, well-written article can keep your audience interested. Make sure it’s on a topic that is of interest right now or one you can easily update in the future to stay relevant.
Make sure your chosen niche is profitable. If your goal is to generate an income from your blog then you are going to have to monetize.
You will need to do research on your chosen niche and find out what you can promote to sell or better if you can create your own product.
I’ll explain more about monetization in a later step but for now, you just need to research if there are possibilities for you to do so, if not, choose a different niche.
To help you decide, here is a list of the top 15 most profitable niches:
- Digital Marketing / Make Money Online (MMO)
- Weight loss
- Cooking / Baking
- Personal Development
You can always go more specific within your chosen niche and choose a sub-niche to focus your blog on.
The options are limitless, just don’t forget to make sure you always have something to write about no matter what niche or sub-niche you decide.
Step 4: Buying A Domain Name
At first, once you have chosen your niche you probably would have a few website name ideas pop into your head.
You can check the availability of website names through Namecheap which are the best domain name registar for buying a domain name.
Now, this is where the process to create a website from scratch can either be quick or very frustrating (unfortunately for me, it was the latter).
Unless you are extremely lucky, you have a 90% chance the domain name won’t be available. This is where you will then have to be strategic and try to think outside the box when it comes to creating a website name.
Choosing your domain name is not difficult but more time-consuming in finding one that is available, in your budget, and most importantly one that you are happy with.
You need to be happy with the name you buy because this will be your website’s name for the foreseeable future.
The top 4 tips to keep in mind when creating your domain name:
- Try to keep the name short. Two to three words are best.
- Always use a .com as this is the most common and easy top level domain name.
- Try not to use any numbers or abbreviations, this makes it more difficult to remember and type correctly. Keep it readable and simple
- The easiest domain name to choose would most likely be your name. Using your name is more tailored to personal blogs but can be used as a branded blog. Make sure you are comfortable with having your name public before deciding.
There are so many domain name registers but we use and find Namecheap to be the best domain name registar:
- Their domains are affordable, checkout is simple and the dashboard is easy to navigate.
- You get a free lifetime “WhoisGuard” privacy protection service which prevents anyone from knowing your name, address, phone number, and email from when you register your domain. Just remember to click auto and renew this feature.
- They also offer free DNSSEC security. This gives your website visitors protection from any fraudulent activity that may occur
- Great 24/7 online support is available through live chats which are reliable, convenient, and very helpful.
To keep all your accounts with the same email address, I recommend you create a new google email account with the same name as the domain name you have bought. It’s easier if you use the same email address for all the accounts relating to your website.
Step 5: Sign Up For Web Hosting
So by now, you should have already decided on your niche and registered your domain name with Namecheap.
Now you need web hosting…
Hosting is where your website lives. Essentially, hosting is just like an external hard drive but for websites instead of documents and pictures.
Without a hosting provider, you will be unable to create a website from scratch.
SiteGround is an amazing hosting provider. They are simple to use, easy to implement, cost-effective, and supported by WordPress.
Their support center is open 24/7 and the staff are friendly and efficient but most importantly is that they do daily backups of your website that you have access to.
If something goes wrong while you are creating and editing your website, you can restore it to your last backup. Possible problems could include links to certain pages not working or a 404-page error.
It’s literally like an undo button.
As a beginner and someone who might not be familiar with coding would normally encounter more problems and errors just because you will be trying to understand and navigate how to implement certain features.
Siteground offers 3 different hosting plans you can choose from but I recommend you go with their Startup Plan (This is a great plan for beginners)
All their plans come with a free SSL certificate, just remember to turn it on.
An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that enables an encrypted connection and provides authentication for your website.
This certificate is very important because it prevents your website from data breaches, phishing, and many other threats to you and your visitors. Once you enable it, you will notice a small lock before your URL in the search bar.
When you checkout, buy the SG Site Scanner SiteGround offers as an extra layer of protection for your website. This is optional so you can always buy it later. However, it’s best to have safeguards in place from the beginning.
SiteScanner is a service that scans your website every 24 hours for malware and hacking issues. You will receive weekly updates on these scans.
See our article: SiteGround Review for more information.
Step 6: Connecting Your Domain To Your Hosting
- The very first thing you are going to do is login to both your Namecheap and SiteGround accounts.
- On your SiteGround account, click “manage account” and then look for “Account DNS”.
Here you will see 2 nameservers listed with similar IP addresses.
These are the 2 nameservers you will be copying one at a time and pasting into your Namecheap account.
- Keeping that siteground page open with your nameservers, go to the Namecheap account you have logged into. Click the “Domain Name” link on the left-hand side of the navigation menu.
- Once here, you will have a list of the domain names you have purchased.
- Find the domain name you want to connect with siteground and click ”manage”, this will take you to the domain management page.
- On the domain management page, go to the “nameservers” row, click the “Custom DNS option”.
- From here you need to copy your nameservers from siteground one at a time and paste those codes in Namecheap next to the custom DNS, once you are done, click “save”.
If it doesn’t connect immediately, don’t worry. It can take between 8-24 hours for your website to go live.
Step 7: Installing WordPress On SiteGround
When creating a website, you can use WordPress which is free software.
The process on which to install WordPress on SiteGround is easy through their step by step setup wizard:
- First, you are going to login into your SiteGround account and go to your client area. On the front page, they will ask you if you want to “set up site”, click this button.
- You will then have the option to either select “Start new website” or “Migrate Website”, you click the select box under “Start new website”.
- You will then be asked to choose your application, click the select button under the “WordPress” option and where it says installation details, create a complicated password with your business email. Once you have done this, click “continue”.
- You will then be asked if you want to add any enhancements to your account, when you are done, click “finish”. That’s it, WordPress is installed.
Your website will automatically be setup with a theme if you have not installed or selected one of your own. This brings us to the next step.
Step 8: Buying And Installing A Theme
A theme is a template and the foundation layer of your website. Themes determine how your website looks when it comes to style, fonts, color scheme, etc.
When you create a website from scratch it is best to buy a theme rather than using a free one.
When you installed WordPress as mentioned in step 7 WordPress automatically places one of its themes on your website. This theme comes free with WordPress.
While many free themes are good and do everything you need them to do as far as having a functioning website, it’s not a long-term solution, here’s why:
- You will have limited options when it comes to widgets, sliders, templates, etc. This is because the developers who create themes earn a very small income therefore the effort put into creating the free themes is low.
- It’s not going to look professional. What I mean by this is that free themes tend to be boring in their appearances and lack that “WOW ” factor you want especially when you are building traffic to your website. Every visitor is important and you want to make a good first impression.
- You do not receive great technical support. If you are a 1st-time website owner or if you don’t know anything about web development, you are going to need support. Free themes tend to have more online forums with answers to popular questions but you will be struggling to make updates and changes on your own.
- Free themes can decide to no longer have updates or even discontinue the use of the theme. This will be an absolute nightmare because your entire website would be lost and there would be no way for you to recover all your data.
This is why paid themes are better choices when you create a website from scratch.
There are many themes available today that you can buy. My 2 favorites are Elegant Themes and Flatsome. Both are fantastic themes and both offer the 5 features listed below that you need to look out for:
- It needs to be able to integrate with WordPress.
- If you are not a developer and don’t know anything about coding, then it needs to have a visual page builder integrated.
- Theme continually receives updates.
- Have great customer service and technical support.
- Good security.
You can either buy the yearly access or lifetime access plans Elegant Themes offers. The lifetime access is a one-time payment.
With both plans, you get access to Divi (this is the visual website builder), Extra (extra category theme builder), Bloom (Email Opt-in Plugin), Monarch (Social sharing plugin), Hundreds of website packs, Unlimited website usage, and Risk-free guaranteed.
The yearly plan also allows you access to product updates and premium support as long as you pay your subscription. If you opt for the lifetime access plan, yes, you guessed it, you get lifetime updates and lifetime support.
Both plans are great however investing in their lifetime access and paying one time for the theme. This plan will save you a lot of money in the future.
The other reason is that you will have peace of mind knowing that no matter what, you will always have the theme with lifetime updates and support.
Installing Elegant Theme:
Elegant Themes has made it easy for you to download and install their theme through your WordPress dashboard.
To start the installation process:
- Click here, and buy one of the membership plans they offer.
- Once bought, in your membership area click the “downloads” tab on the left. Here you will be presented with a variety of different features you can download, find the Divi Theme, and click “download”.
- Their theme will download in a zipped file under your downloads section on your PC
- Now login to your WordPress dashboard.
- Click on Appearances > Themes. This will take you to your themes page.
You will notice that there are 1 or 2 other themes already available to you. These are just the free themes that come with WordPress.
- At the top of your theme pages click “add new” and then click “upload theme”
- You will then be directed to a new page with an upload link. Click “choose file” which will open so you can browse your PC. Find and select the “Divi.zip” file which should be under your downloads that we did in point 2.
- Once the file has been selected, click the “install now” button
- The page will reload and your theme should be fully uploaded. All you need to do now is click the “activate” button for this theme
- Well done, your theme is now activated and live.
Flatsome Theme Forest – Multi-Purpose Responsive Woocommerce Theme:
This theme is a one time purchase and includes future updates and 6 months of support from UX-Builder. There is an option to extend your support to 12 months for an additional cost.
Although Flatsome is a great theme, when you purchase the theme you can only use it on one website.
This would mean every time you want to create a website from scratch, you need to buy a new theme.
Installing Flatsome Theme:
Before you can install the theme onto your website, you will need to follow the steps below:
- Click here, and buy the theme.
- Once bought, staying on that page, you will then need to scroll through the list of different themes and find the one you purchased (Flatsome Multipurpose responsive woocommerce theme). Next to it will have a green button that says “download”, when you click this button you will have 4 options on what you would like to download, click “all files and documentation”.
- These zipped files will be saved in your downloaded section on your PC.
A quick side note – when you purchase your theme, you will receive an email with your unique API Key. Flag this email and keep it, you will need it later.
An API key is an application programming interface that authenticates who the users are, developers, or the current calling program. Different platforms use this unique API key in many different ways.
- Now you need to unzip the file you just downloaded and open the themes file folder. In this folder, there will be 2 zipped files. One will be Flatsome with the latest version and the other Flatsome-child. You will be installing both.
One way to avoid interference with updates is to create your customizations in a separate file called a “child theme.”
- Now login to your WordPress dashboard.
- Click on Appearances > Themes. This will take you to your themes page.
You will notice that there are 1 or 2 other themes already available to you. These are just the free themes that come with WordPress.
- At the top of your theme pages click “add new” and then click “upload theme”
- You will then be directed to a new page with an upload link. Click “choose file” which will open so you can browse your PC. Find the Flatsome Folder and open the theme files folder with the 2 zipped files. Select the main flatsome file and install. The other alternative is to drag and drop the zipped file if you find that option easier.
- When the file has been selected, click the “install now” button.
- The page will reload and your theme should be fully uploaded, don’t click “activate” instead repeat the process in steps 7-9, only this time choose the flatsome-child file and install.
- Once the Flatsome-child theme is installed and uploaded, click the “activate” button on this theme as you will be using the flatsome-child theme to make changes to your website.
Once you activate the child theme, you will be redirected to a page to follow the Flatsomes wizard setup.
You can skip this setup process and do the setup later in the flatsome menu in your WordPress dashboard however I highly recommend you do it now rather than later.
- The first thing you are going to be asked to add is your code. Remember when I told you to flag and save the email you received after purchasing your theme with your API key, this is the code you will be using. Simply copy the code from your email and paste it into the “purchased code field”.
- Now you will be given the option to rename the child theme however my advice to you is to keep the default name they give which is Flatsome child, so just click “create and use child theme”
- You will now be asked to install default plugins that are included in Flatsome. Add all the plugins they suggest and then click “continue” because you can always remove or add plugins you want in your dashboard under plugins later.
- The next step allows you the option to use flatsome theme demo content for your website. You want to do this because you are setting up a new website. It will be super helpful to have everything already in place for you to edit what you want to keep or remove. This is also why I advised you to install all the plugins from the previous step because if you haven’t, the demo content might not work properly. Make sure all the boxes are checked in the item list and then click “Continue”.
- The next step will ask you to upload a logo of your choice, if you have not yet designed a logo, don’t worry, click “skip this step” as you will be creating your website logo in the next step of this guide.
- To finish setting up your flatsome theme click “agree and continue” so your theme can be activated and ready to use.
Step 9: Creating Your Logo
When you create a website from scratch you need a logo that you will place in the header of your website.
Your logo dimension will all depend on the theme you are using. Going with the themes I recommended in Step 8, here are the approximate dimensions for each theme:
Full banner – 468 px (width) by 60 px (height)
Horizontal layout – 250 px (width) by 150 px (height), 350 px (width) by 75 px (height) or 400 px (width) by 100 px (height)
Vertical layout – 160 px (width) by 160 px (height)
Flatsome Theme Forest:
Horizontal – 400 px (width) by 84 px (height)
There are two different options you can take when creating your website logo:
Option 1: Create your logo yourself using an online company like Canva. They have a drag-and-drop system to create custom designs with a variety of different templates including logos, posters, cards, Instagram stories, and loads more.
Canva offers a free and Pro version.
The free version is great for only creating simple designs because you have limited access to their photo library, illustrations, fonts, and elements. You are able to upload your own images or buy images premium for $1 each.
However, the Pro version of Canva gives you access to their complete selection of over a 60million photos, illustrations, icons, and elements.
Canva Pro also allows you to download your designs with a transparent background if you wish. As well as have the option to resize your designs. Both of these options don’t come with the free version.
If you do struggle to find an image you like on Canva you can also download your images from another platform to upload and use.
Always remember to only use copyright-free images that are free for commercial use and no attribution required. Companies such as Pixabay and Picmonkey are great to use to download free images.
Creating your own logo when you create a website from scratch allows you to be creative. It also gives you experience should you need to create designs later on as your website grows.
Option 2: Outsource your logo.
Fiverr is a great place for outsourcing work. You simply pay someone to create your logo for you by giving them detailed instructions on what you would like in terms of size, color, fonts, and website name should you choose to use it in your logo.
Their minimum price starts at $5. Remember the more credit and good ratings a designer has the more you will pay but then the designs will be a lot better.
Once you have created your logo and downloaded it with a transparent background you will need to upload it onto the website you are creating.
Step 10: Installing Plugins
WordPress plugins are usually free and are PHP scripts/code that either help to enhance or add new features.
When you create a website from scratch, there are a couple of plugins you need to download and install.
Below I have listed the names of each free plugin and why you would need it:
- Yoast SEO – This plugin helps you implement SEO on your website quicker and more effectively. Yoast will scan your website and give you a list of guidelines on what you need to change to improve your website’s SEO so that you can gain more traffic. You can edit your meta descriptions in the settings section of the Yoast SEO plugin and choose what you would like Google to index such as posts, pages, or both.
- WP User Avatar – This plugin allows registered users to upload and choose their own picture they would like to be shown whenever they like, comment, or send an email on websites.
- WP Meta and Date Remover – When you create and post on your website, the articles you post will be dated along with the author. This plugin allows you to remove the Author Meta and Date from your posts and pages.This is something you want to do because collecting the data can become a problem in the future. If a visitor is looking for information, they will likely either read the most recent dated article or an article with no date. Dated articles lose their relevance the longer they age.
- WP Content Copy Protection & No Right Click – Anyone who has a website knows the amount of time and effort it takes to write articles. This is why it’s so important to prevent people from being able to copy and use your information for their gain. This plugin prevents anyone from right-clicking and copying your work or using “CTRL “ C on their keyboard.
- WP AutoTerms – This plugin helps you generate free legal pages for websites.
- Table of Contents Plus – If you create very long articles with many subheadings, a table of contents is very helpful to your readers. This plugin automatically creates this table of contents for you to help your readers know the overview of the content or easily click on a section they are most interested in reading.
- Google Analytics for WordPress by MonsterInsights – Reading and understanding data received from your website will help you to know what people are enjoying and what they are not. This plugin allows you to easily track your website and receive data from google analytics on the number of visitors and pageviews you are getting.
- AddToAny Share Buttons – Many themes have a social sharing feature installed however if you don’t have that feature with your theme or don’t like the social sharing widget then this plugin adds share buttons to your website so people can share your articles to social media.
- Sassy Social Share – This plugin is free to use and allows you to place standard or floating share buttons on your website. You are also able to customize the color, shape, size, and position of your buttons. This plugin does have a paid version with extra features to choose from.
Another thing to implement when you create a website is downloading plugins that help with the speed of your site:
- Smush – Images on a website and significantly reduce the loading speed of your website. This plugin helps to automatically compress any images you have or future images you upload to help with increasing your site’s speed.
- WP Speed of Light – This plugin helps speed up your website. It’s beginner-friendly and comes with several detailed options to help optimize your WordPress website.
- BJ Lazy Load – This is another plugin that lazy loads different sections of your website at different times to help with the speed of your site.
The following list of plugins below will help with your website security:
The internet is continually crawling with bots, hackers, and malware viruses. It’s important to keep your site secure to prevent you from becoming a target.
There is far less risk when you implement all your security from the start as you have little to no content on your website however as you grow the security on site will become more necessary. Having your security setup will be one less concern for you.
Below is a list of security plugins you need to download and activate to protect your site:
- Limit Login Attempts Reloaded – With this plugin you can set the amount of failed login attempts to your WordPress dashboard which adds another extra layer of security.
- WP Security Question – This plugin enables you to add an extra layer of security to your WordPress login by allowing you to create a unique question and answer only you would know.
- WP Hide & Security Enhancer – Anybody who visits a website can see the source code of that site by right-clicking and select “view source”. This plugin hides important source codes you don’t want people to be able to see such as the plugins you use, theme, and content management system. This also helps with the security of your website from cyber attacks and hackers.
- Wordfence Security – This is the ultimate plugin for everything security-related on a website. It enables you to add 2-factor authentication when logging into your WordPress dashboard/admin area. Every time your WordPress is logged into, you will receive a security notification of this activity. This is very helpful especially if you receive a notification your WordPress has been logged into but it wasn’t you.This plugin also blocks malicious code and hackers from getting into your website.
- WP Hide Login – Your WordPress login url will be visible to anyone who simply types your website URL into the search bar followed by /wp-login.php
This is a huge security threat to your website. Your WordPress url login is the entry into your wordpress dashboard. This is where you can create posts, and pages and change the layout and appearance.
If your url login is easy to find, you open yourself up to hackers. It is easier for them to guess your username and password once they have found your wordpress login url page.
What this plugin does is allow you to easily change your login url to anything that you want. Make sure it’s cryptic enough and just like your passwords, has letters and numbers in it.
Old login url – www.domainname.com/wp-login.php
New login url – www.domainname.com/htp56Lm9t
Don’t forget to bookmark your new login url page so you won’t lose or forget it. All these steps so far you need to implement when you create a website from scratch.
Step 11: Website Speed
Site speed is a very important metric when you create a website from scratch.
A great user experience is what gives you great conversions and a lower bounce rate. Bounce rate simply is a calculated percentage of how long a visitor entered and left a website.
The goal is to have visitors stay on your website for as long as possible.
Site speed also helps you to rank higher on google as you will have more traffic on your site. If you have a slow site speed, this will dramatically decrease the user experience and conversion rates.
Time is valuable and nobody wants to browse a website that is running slow.
To test your site speed, you can use google’s page speed insights test that’s completely free. Simply type your website url and Google will analyze your site’s speed.
The results will show the desktop speed as well as the mobile speed. For optimal speed you want both to be at least in the green.
There are several plugins as I mentioned in the last step that helps to improve your site’s speed. Install and activate these plugins.
Step 12: Mandatory Pages
When you create a website from scratch, there are several legal pages and software you need to implement to make sure you are following all legal laws.
Having a contact form on your website is optional.
There are a few reasons why someone might want a contact form:
- To allow their readers an easy way to contact them.
- Contact forms are a lot safer when it comes to keeping your email address hidden. This prevents spammers from being able to access your email address.
- It also helps to retarget leads through email marketing.
There are a however a few reasons why someone might decide not to have a contact form on their website:
- They do not want to be flooded with promo ads and spam emails from bots. Even though there are ways to prevent this issue, many spam emails still tend to happen.
If you decide to use a contact form, wordpress has a free plugin called “WPForms”. This form also enables you to choose what fields your readers fill out on the form.
There is also a paid version of WPForms where you can choose between 4 different plans. Each plan will give you access to many extra features the free version doesn’t.
I recommend you go with the paid version of WPForms so that legally you can comply with the GDPR compliance of the collection of personal data by tracking the consent of the visitor that uses your contact form.
To install the “WPForm” plugin, login to your WordPress dashboard.
- Click “Plugins”, from there click “Add New” and search for “WPForms”
- Find the plugin and click “Install”.
- Once it’s installed you can click “Activate”
After you have installed and activated the plugin, follow the easy-to-use setup wizard. The Wizard takes you through the process of how to create your form.
Terms Of Conditions Page:
When you create a website from scratch you need a terms of conditions page. It’s a legal document that lays out what visitors can and cannot do when on your site.
Should a customer choose to take you to court for whatever reason, this legal page can help protect the content on your website that is rightfully yours. Be sure to tailor the content on your terms and conditions page to suit the needs of your website.
There are two options to create your terms and conditions page:
Option 1– Use a free plugin called “wp auto-terms”. This plugin uses a setup wizard to help you create your terms and conditions agreement.
This plugin is user friendly and you can customize the information to your website.
Option 2 – Use the company Iubenda for your terms and conditions page. This company provides different policies in multiple languages connected to GDPR which we discuss below.
If you are unfamiliar with this acronym it means General Data Protection Regulation.
The GDPR law was created to give EU citizens a better understanding of what happens to their data when they share it with companies and organizations.
The guidelines outline how, when, and where personal information from anyone who lives within the European Union collects and processes this data.
No matter where you live, you need to implement these laws. If you have any operations or individuals from the EU visiting your site, signing up for your newsletter, commenting on your articles, or contacting you via your contact form, then you will need to adhere to the GDPR law as you will be collecting and processing that data.
Legal EU professional lawyers write and update the policies. They have many different policies to choose from. Each one comes with its own explanation of the policy and who would need to implement it.
They offer two different bundles and each bundle allows for customization to add additional policies. You can create a custom plan and select the specific policies you need for your website.
Learn more about Iubenda here.
This page is just as important as your other pages. This page protects certain aspects of your site from legal claims.
Your disclaimer page makes your visitors aware you are not liable or responsible for how they use your site or information. This also includes content, products, use of third parties, and any compensation you get for clicks or purchases on your website.
Have your disclaimer on a page just like your terms of conditions and easily accessible. Create a smaller disclaimer banner, at least two sentences, and place it either before or during every post on your website.
Step 13: Connecting Analytics
There are many different analytic tools available to choose from. In this guide, I will explain the two most popular analytics tools. The first is Google’s Universal Analytics and the second is Fathom Analytics.
Universal Analytics (UA) is a powerful tool to help you assess your data-driven marketing – it can show you where to spend your money and how potential customers behave on your site.
This data can be anything from your overall website traffic or individual page traffic, bounce rate, geographical location such as the country the visitor is from, traffic from mobile or desktop, social platforms, and loads more.
It’s the most effective and free analytical way to help you improve your user’s experience and change what isn’t working or converting to what is.
For you to be able to have this data you will need to set up a Google Analytics account and connect it to your website.
Google has made changes to its analytics and has created a new version known as Google Analytics 4 (GA4). By 2023 (July 1), Google will only be using GA4.
If you are implementing Google Analytics for the first time, it’s best to use the new version. If you currently have the Universal Analytics setup, you have until July 1, 2023 to switch to Google Analytics 4.
Find out more about Google Analytics 4 and how to connect it to your website.
If you are looking for an alternative to Google Analytics then you need Fathom Analytics. Their top priority is focusing on your visitor’s privacy and they don’t collect any personal information. This means they are perfect for having a GDPR-compliant analytics tracking tool.
Although Fathom Analytics is a paid software, their prices are affordable. They do however offer a free 7-day trial which after you can pay a monthly or yearly fee.
Step 14: Google Search Console
This is a tool Google offers for free. What this tool does is allow website owners to see how their websites are performing in google searches. You can view information about pages indexed and crawled with Google Search Console.
This tool also helps provide important information about your websites such as if there is anything wrong with any of your links or page errors.
To gain access to this information you are going to need to add your website and verify that you are the owner:
You are going to be using the same business email you used to create your website from scratch.
- Using your same business email and password, log in to the Google Search Console.
- Once logged in you will be asked to select a property type. You will have a choice between Domain or URL Prefix.
- You are going to type your websites url in the Domain property type and click “continue”
- You will then need to be asked to verify that you are the owner of the website property you want to track. There are a few ways of doing this. You will be given a few verification methods. Some of these include adding a meta tag, editing your DNS settings, adding an HTML file to your server, or connecting to your google analytics account. Whichever one you choose, you will be guided through the steps you need to take to complete the verification method.
- Once you have completed the steps and are verified, you will have to wait at least 24 hours, sometimes a bit longer before your data starts showing.
Step 15: Website Indexing With Yoast
Before you can index your website and its pages you will need to submit your XML sitemap posts and sitemap pages to the google search console. To have your website indexed correctly, you need to do this.
Everyone who creates a website from scratch has to do this.
If you’ve never created a website before, using a plugin with simple commands to create your XML sitemaps and add meta tags automatically will help make your job easier.
By now you should have already installed and activated the Yoast Seo plugin from step 10, if not, now is the time to do that.
XML sitemaps index all your websites and web pages so that google can find them. This means that those website owners have added either all or certain posts and pages on their website to Google Search Console.
Google will automatically crawl several of your website’s pages, posts, and categories once you have verified your website on Google Search Console but often not all or sometimes not the ones you want.
This is why you need to manually choose what Google does or doesn’t index and follow on your website. This is where meta tags come into effect.
For Google to not crawl certain posts and pages, you will need to set the meta tags to no-index.
For Google to not follow certain links on posts and pages, you will need to set the meta tags to no-follow.
The steps below will help you to understand how to create your XML sitemaps, upload them on Google Search Console, and then index them:
- Login to your wordpress dashboard
- Install and activate the plugin Yoast Seo. If you haven’t already, go to plugins, click “Add new”. Search for the Yoast Seo plugin and click “Download”. Once downloaded click “Activate”
- Now go to SEO > General
- Click on the tab “Features” and scroll down till you find “XML sitemaps” and check to see it is turned on and click “save changes”
- From here click the small question mark next to “XML sitemaps” and then click “see the XML sitemap”. You can also easily find your sitemaps by adding sitemap_index.xml at the end of your website’s url. You will notice you have many different sitemaps for different content. Usually, there will be a sitemap for posts, pages, categories, and author.
Below is how you are going to submit these XML sitemaps in your Google Search Console:
- Login to your Google Search Console in a new window
- In the left column of your dashboard under index, click “sitemaps”
- Under add a new sitemap, add the end part of your website url for posts and click “submit”
- Repeat the above step, only this time add the end part of your website url for pages and click “submit”. No need to submit the author and categories sitemap because it’s not useful information for Google.
Now you are going to need to submit your XML sitemaps to Bing:
- Sign up using your same Google account email and password as your google search console in the Bing Webmaster Tools
- Once you sign in you will have two options to submit your XML sitemaps to Bing. As you have already submitted your XML sitemaps to the google search console, the easiest will be to choose the option to import your site by clicking “Import” so it can be automatically done for you.
This way your XML sitemaps will be submitted to Google and Bing. You have the option to leave both these XML sitemaps indexed and followed for google to crawl. However, it’s best to set your meta tags for pages, categories, and authors to no-index and no-follow.
Oftentimes pages on websites don’t offer or provide value in google search results. This is because the content on those pages is not helpful to the user. Content including admin or login pages, about page, disclaimer, terms of conditions, and so forth.
Google is an informative and value-adding platform. Only allow Google to index and follow posts with your articles and links that offer valuable information google is looking to recommend.
If you choose to only have your posts indexed and followed would mean you need to stop google from indexing and following your pages. Yoast Seo plugin allows you to easily change your meta tags to your requirements:
- Login to your wordpress dashboard
- On the left in the menu, go to SEO>Search Appearance
- Click the tab “Content Types” and scroll down to pages
- Click the drop-down arrow and where it says “show pages in search results”, make sure it is set to “no”
All your pages on your website will be set to the meta tags no-index and no-follow. If you create a page you don’t want on Google, change the meta tags on that page. You can do this by:
- Going to “pages” in the left menu of your dashboard
- Find the page you want to change and click “edit”
- Scroll down to the bottom of that page where the Yoast SEO box settings are
- From here, scroll down to “advanced”, click the drop-down menu and where it says, “allow search engines to show this page in search results”, click “yes”
- The next one down where it says, “should search engines follow links on this page”, click “yes”
For every page, you create and want to change, use the same method above. You can also follow the above process to turn off the index and follow certain posts if you wish.
Still in Yoast Plugin settings, under SEO>Search Appearance, you will have noticed there are different tabs.
Below you will find the meaning of each tab. Including its settings that you can turn on and off depending on your preference.
General Tab: Here you will be able to edit your title separator. Eg: hyphen(-), bullet(•), or a vertical bar(|). For your homepage, you can change the SEO title and meta description. Change the way your site looks in google’s knowledge graph
Content Types: Here you can change the meta tags for your posts and pages
Media: When you upload images to wordpress, there is a url attached to that image that is available. WordPress creates an entirely new webpage only for that image. It’s better to disable any attached URLs and redirect the link starting to the image.
Taxonomies: These are grouped posts with the same relationship, eg: categories or tags.
Archive: Here you can allow different archives to show up in the search results
Breadcrumbs: This is a way to see users location on websites
RSS: Here you can add links back to your website at the end of your posts. This proves to google you are the original content creator.
You need to do this because many scraper sites simply copy content from other websites and use it as their own without linking where they got their information from.
This might set you back in google’s ranking because they might be able to outrank you with your content.
Step 16: Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization involves the process of improving your ranking in search engines.
You can achieve this by interviewing, choosing appropriate keywords and phrases, staying up-to-date with Google algorithm changes, plus more.
What SEO does is try to figure out internet algorithms to depict people’s search behavior when on the internet.
This could be what people are searching, what popular keywords are being searched, or which internet platform is mostly used.
You can either do this by using free traffic also known as “organic” traffic through different search mediums or opt for paid traffic.
There are several methods on how to implement SEO to get the most traffic especially if you are using free organic traffic. You can also use Yoast SEO that helps you to organize your articles so they are optimized according to search engine algorithms.
Below is a list of a few SEO tips to help:
Google Keyword Planner helps you understand which keywords rank high and are most popular. This is a free tool that provides you with data on any keyword you search such as the average monthly searches and competition.
- To start using this tool, click here. On the homepage click the blue button “Go to keyword planner”
- You will be redirected to log in to a google account. Here is where you will enter your email and password used for your google search console and google analytics account.
- Once signed in, you will be asked what’s your main advertising goal? Below the 3 options will be a link that says “Experienced with google ads?”, click this link
- Next, click “Create an account without a campaign” and click “submit”
- You will see a screen that will say “Congrats! You all done”, click “Explore your account”
- From here, on the top menu bar click “tools” and then click “switch to expert mode” and follow the instructions to complete the switch
- Once you have done that, on the top menu bar click “tools” again, under planning click “keyword planner” and you’re done. You can now search keywords without having to have an ads campaign or fill out any credit card details.
Also keep in mind to:
- Try place the keywords you are ranking for in your title
- The longer your article, the better. Don’t write articles less than 1200 words.
- Make sure your articles have lots of helpful information
- Structure your articles with an introduction, body (have 1-3 subheading paragraphs), and a conclusion.
Step 17: Social Media Accounts
Social media platforms are some of the best ways to get traffic to your website. Many of these social media platforms include Instagram, Youtube, Pinterest, Facebook, and TikTok.
If you decide to choose social media as another traffic source outside of just google traffic to your newly created website. You need to decide if you are taking the path of a personal or professional brand.
The difference between the two is a professional brand is not always about you being the face but your business will take the front seat.
This would mean that all your social media content will be around what your brand is about whether it be a comedy, educational, or informational without showing your face.
A personal brand is about you being front and center by posting content with you in it.
Whichever you choose you need to keep the following in mind:
- Make a list of the social media platforms you feel your website and its content will be liked by the users.
- What type of content will you be posting that is related to your website’s niche. Eg: If your niche is about how to make money online then your social media content should be around talking and educating people on how to make money online.
- Once you have come up with your ideas and social media platforms, you will need to start uploading your content. To help build a good following, I advise you to follow similar accounts to your and comment something friendly such as, “Really like your content” or “Such a great idea”
Step 18: Monetization
This is where all websites make their money. This can be done through ad sense, promoting digital and physical products through affiliate links from different online stores, email marketing or even creating your own revenue stream through courses or e-books.
Almost all your money usually is commissioned based on you applying to become an affiliate for many online companies.
The term affiliate marketing simply means that you are promoting a product or service on behalf of another company.
When you are accepted as an affiliate you will receive a unique url that if someone buys through that link you will receive a commission for that sale.
To see if the company you want to promote has an affiliate program, go to google and type the company’s name, and next to it type affiliate program to see if they have a program you can sign up to.
All digital and physical products you promote when you create a website from scratch should always be based on your niche. Eg: If you are a fashion blogger, then you would promote affiliate products such as accessories, clothing brands, etc.
Always make sure you read their terms and conditions before signing up for any affiliate program. Also always only promote affiliate products that you believe in, know are good products or use yourself.
When you create a website from scratch, you can have Google Adsense run ads on your website. With every ad clicked and purchased, you will earn a commission.
This is a type of marketing that is great when you create a website from scratch. By having an email opt-in newsletter your visitors can voluntarily choose to sign up on your website.
It is a great way to connect and build a relationship with whoever decided to sign up for your newsletter.
These emails that you send out are a simple yet effective way to promote your affiliate products through your links, tell them all about your latest posts, and promote the courses or books you have created.
There are free wordpress plugins such as ‘mail chimp’ however when it comes to email marketing, using a paid software is a better and safer option.
Paid email marketing softwares like GetResponse allows you to have access to far more built-in features, privacy, and a variety of data collected that you don’t get from free software.
GetResponse is a subscription-based online platform that helps you create opt-in and pop-up forms. As well as landing pages with many different templates, tools, and an easy drag-and-drop builder.
The best part is that you have the option to automate your emails by creating a workflow to your specified filters and preferred actions.
Automation helps you to automate your email strategy based on your subscriber’s actions to the emails you have sent such as:
- Retarget subscribers who didn’t open their email. This happens more often than you think because of the number of emails a person receives in a day, sometimes your email could have gotten lost among all the unread emails. By scheduling a system that all emails not read within a set amount of days can be retargeted to resend that same email.
- Resend emails that were opened but no click-through rate.
- Preschedule the date and times new emails should be sent and to which subscribers.
These are just a few examples as to why having your emails automated will increase your sales, leads, and revenue.
Email marketing has been ranked as one of the highest converting revenue streams online and automated email marketing has been known to increase click-through rate 2x compared to manually sending one-off emails to your subscribers.
If you have followed this entire guide and implemented every step, CONGRATULATIONS!
You can now call yourself a blogger as you have just successfully create a blogger website. Notice how creating a website is not as difficult as you might have first thought.
Now is when the hard work begins…
Creating a website with wordpress for your blog was only the platform you needed, now is the time when you will need to work hard, be dedicated, and remember why you took the time to start a blog in the first place.
I’m saying all this because building your blog, getting that traffic, and creating your social profiles are going to take time.
“Always Remember To Stay Learning In Order To Stay Earning”