I've had the opportunity to explain this to several people last month, and now it's time for me to write an article about it.
Free Blogging and cheap domain names...
Currently, your total cost for the whole first year, for everything here, is 99 cents. Even after the domain registration sale is over, and for renewing it the following year, the cost is only $8 more ($8.88).
Here's what you get:
- A website that you can personalize.
- (This blog, ABCInc.pw, was created like this, and is free to me.)
- You get free email forwarding to your regular email account (Gmail? HotMail?)
- Many, many YouTube tutorials.
These are important links that I will be talking about:
I have set up several free sites, and I invite you to visit them.
- Each site has it's own favicon ~ that's the little picture on the tab at the top of your browser, and becomes are part of the if someone makes the link a "favorite."
- Each site has its own web address (URL).
- Each site looks different from each other, and only by comparing them side-by-side does someone see the similarities.
- Each site has the same general layout
- A header and a footer
- Blogs automatically sorted with either the newest first or the oldest first
- A side bar with content that's different on each site
- Each link will open in a new window, so you can visit it and not lose your place here.
- https://ABCInc.pw ~ yes that's this blog, and it will open in a new window so you can look at the overall layout
- https://WebTools.ABCInc.pw ~ note: this is a different page on abcinc.pw
- https://BarbaraLouHolcomb.name ~ purely personal; I'm sharing how the layout uses a different theme.
- Finally, here is a work-in-progress that does not have a domain name associated with it: https://rixplayground.blogspot.com/
First, find and look at a few Youtube.com tutorials. The link will actually start your search. If you don't like one video, then go on to the next until you find a voice and pace that you do like.
I personally like Kisha Jaggers' YouTube video (she's no relation).
Kisha's tutorial suggests that you reduce the size of her video, then follow along as you create your blog. (You will need to have a gmail account, too.)
You will find:
- Your website will have a free SSL certificate, and will open with https://
- The site settings are simple and straight forward
- Your blog has an editor that works a lot like Microsoft Word
- Blogger.com is owned by Google. That means your work will be immediately scanned and added to Google.
- SEO after that, though, is an entirely different topic, and depends on the strength of your content and your own marketing
- You can turn advertising on or off - if you turn it on you may earn a few pennies
After you begin your blog, then you can go to https://namecheap.com to find and register a domain name. Several domain extensions are on sale, but watch carefully the renewal price. In the past, I've seen other registrars offer a deeply discounted first year, but then the renewals are $20-$100 on the second year.
Finally, Domain Registration
I like NameCheap for several reasons.
- They're cheap - .pw domains are $.99 for the first year and $8.88/year thereafter
- I am a domain reseller (ABCInc-Domains.com); the retail prices from NameCheap.com are cheaper than my wholesale prices.
Time to Write!
Once you go through the setup and tweak the site show what you want, you're done.
To add content: click on "New Post," move to the next box and begin typing. When you're done, click "Publish."
... to be continued...