I still get surprised each time I get asked how I created this humble food blog.
I was so eager to understand and do everything myself to keep costs low, but it backfired. In the end, I had wasted time, was consistently frustrated, still did not understand code and still had not published a blog post. This was after a whopping 2 years! So without further ado, to prevent this from happening to you, here is what I used to create my blog:
1. NAME YOUR BLOG
First things first, you will need to choose a name for your blog, also known as your “Domain name”. This is the fun part where you can either get very creative or, remain simple. Domain names tend to be short, represent a business, easy to remember and tend to end in .net or .com.
Cost: FREE from Bluehost or around $15 (£11.30) per year on other hosts.
2. FIND A WEB HOST
Next it’s time to select a reliable web host. A web hosting service is “a type of Internet hosting service that allows individuals and organisations to make their website accessible via the World Wide Web” (Wikipedia, 2016). In other words, hosting can be compared to renting a space on the internet which is needed to display your blog.
On many occasions, a payment is required to store your blog on this internet hosting service. In exchange for this fee, your blog can be accessible on the internet, also you will receive necessary support to help you get started.
The internet hosting service I use is Bluehost. It is an inexpensive and user-friendly host that is great for any novice who is interested in starting a food blog. As well as good prices, Bluehost offers customer service 24/7. One brilliant thing about Bluehost is that it gives users the opportunity to get a free domain name (e.g www.eatmorerawfoods.com) with your hosting plan. How it works is that you pay for your plan upfront. If for some reason you change your mind, Bluehost will refund your money back of the months you do not end up using.
I do love a good deal…so do Bluehost too it appears. I have teamed up with Bluehost so that you can purchase your hosting through any of my Bluehost green clickable links and you’ll get the best deal available. No promotional code is required. Click here to get started.
Cost: $5.95 (£4.48) per month
3. INSTALL WORDPRESS
Once you have registered with Bluehost, you can install WordPress using the video instructions provided here or the written instructions here. If you are new to WordPress, it is simply a website content management system. It is a one of a kind personal publishing platform in which all your posts are stored and displayed.
4. INSTALL A WORDPRESS THEME
WordPress themes establishes how your blog will function and look like. There a several themes which come with loud colours, funky layouts and intrusive animations. In some contexts this is suitable, but in most cases it is not needed. In the words of Leonardo da Vinci “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”. Keeping your blog layout simple enables a user friendly experience allowing people to navigate around your blog with ease.
5. CUSTOMISATION OF THEME
As I said earlier the Foodie Pro Theme is one of my favourites due to it’s simplistic and minimalistic style. Because of it’s popularity, I chose to customise my foodie theme ever so slightly to differentiate my blog from many other great blogs out there. My knowledge of coding and HTML was scarce and after much wastage of time and effort, I made the executive decision to hire a designer. I found my designer by looking at other users of the Foodie Pro Theme and scrolling to the bottom of the blogs to see if there was any information on how they customised it. I know, tedious. Luckily for me, I found Sara at Moonstream Design who did a great job in giving my blog a little bit of personalisation. You can find her here: www.moonsteamdesign.com
Cost: Available upon request, but affordable for new blog starters.
6. START BLOGGING
Congratulations! You now have a blog! Now the hard work begins. Get ready to publish those recipes, stories and photos. I find these tips have helped me the most:
- Be original and authentic.
- Provide practical and helpful content, i.e solutions to problems.
- Get inspiration from news articles, social media and books.
- Use catchy headlines.
- Communicate using a range of media such as pictures, videos and infographics.
Cost: Patience, time and consistency.
7. FOOD BLOGGER HELP
The blogging journey can sometimes be a lonely and difficult one, which is why I joined Food Blogger Pro. This is an online community based website dedicated to guidance on the blogging journey. It is a monthly subscription service that provides instant access to a great collection of courses which are continually added to and updated. The courses range from setting up a food blog, to monetising it or food photography. If you are a visual learner, I would highly recommend you joining Food Blogger Pro. Another great thing I like about Food Blogger Pro is the community forum. The majority (if not all) of my food blogging questions have been answered in the forum by fellow members or the website creators Bjork and Lindsay Ostrom. NB: Enrollment for Food Blogger Pro happens a couple of times a year so you need to get in quick! But you can also join the waiting list and get notified when registration opens.
8. MY CAMERA
Up until January 2015, I was using my iPhone 5S to shoot most of my food photography it was handy, transportable and easy to edit by slapping on a pretty filter. But, I was restricted to shooting at certain times of the day, could not achieve effects on certain pictures and ran out of memory on many occasions. So, I decided to upgrade to a Cannon 700D DSLR and it has been a great investment. Digital SLR cameras are wonderful for food photography. They produce professional, quality photos and allow flexibility of use. My 700D got discontinued unfortunately, but the Canon EOS T5 is very similar and equally great. Read the specification and reviews so you can make an informed purchase if you were to buy Canon EOS Rebel T5 Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18–55mm IS II + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III Bundle
I hope you have found the process to creating a food blog helpful. If you have any questions or comments please post them down below. If you happen to start a food blog congrats and let me know how you get on!