Do you ever seem to have those little projects that never seem to get done? You always intend to do them, but somehow you never seem to remember to do them until it becomes important? This blog post is one of those. I know I’ve been asked a lot about how to start with a website for a lot of reasons: blogging, starting a virtual assistant business… that kind of thing.
1. Get your domain name and hosting
I use Godaddy for all of my hosting and domain names, and recommend that all of my students and clients do the same as well.
I’ve had a lot of clients in the past who got their domain name through one place and their hosting through another place. There’s nothing wrong with that, but if you buy hosting through a place like Godaddy, sometimes they’ll give you a free domain for a year or a similar deal. Also, I’ve found that when tech issues happen, having all of your products (domains and hosting) under one roof makes it easier for the tech support to help you out because they can see all the pieces at once.
If you choose to get a domain name somewhere, no one will die and it’s really not that big of a deal. I just prefer to have all my services under one roof to make potential support issues easier to resolve. Ok – so let’s get started!
How to Get Started with Godaddy Managed WordPress
Below I have some pictures of how you can get started with Godaddy’s Managed WordPress, step by step.
I recommend you choose either the basic of the deluxe plan when you first start out. You’ll need to upgrade as your website grows, because the smaller plans have small traffic limits, but they’re fine for a newbie.
One tip I got from a GoDaddy team member: When you purchase a product for the first time, most of the Godaddy sales only apply to first-time purchases, and not to renewals. You’ll save the most money if you can register for as long of a term as you can afford. I have started doing this with all of my services, and I’ve saved a LOT over the past few years doing it that way!
So, to get started you’ll choose your plan (again, the basic or deluxe are fine for beginners with one website.)
3. Select, download and install your website theme
The only theme I use on my websites is Divi from Elegant Themes, so in this tutorial I’ll be showing you how to download and install the theme onto WordPress.
When you login to the member’s area of Elegant Themes you will see a screen like this.
From there, you can click the Download button under the Divi theme, this will give you a file that says “Divi.zip” you do not need to unzip this file or open it, so leave it as it is. We’ll upload this straight to your website as it is.
Uploading and activating your theme to your website
Once you’ve got your theme file, it’s time to upload it to your website and activate it so you can use it!
Login to your website. With a WordPress website hosted, you can usually visit example.com/wp–admin (replacing example.com with your website) to login with the username and password you setup with Godaddy when you setup your domain. You can also visit this link to take you to your Managed WordPress dashboard, and select the three dots to the right of your domain, and select “WP Admin” to take you to the correct page on your website.
When you get logged in, you’ll be in your main dashboard, also called the backend of your website. Hover over the sidebar on the left side and you’ll see a menu that says “Appearance” then you’ll be able to choose “Themes”
At the top of the Themes page, click the ADD NEW button, then on the next page in the same spot click the UPLOAD THEME button. This is the page where we’ll upload your Divi theme file we downloaded from Elegant Themes.
It should look something like this.
When you return to the Themes page, you’ll be able to activate Divi so it’s live on your website. Now, the fun work begins! In the next lesson I’ll teach you how you can make your website look like your own work of art!
Have questions about starting a new website?I figured you might – because there’s a lot to starting a new website. I’ve outlined some of the really common questions I get below, but feel free to leave me a comment with any other questions. I make sure each comment always gets answered, so you aren’t left hanging! 🙂
Should I start with a free platform, like WordPress.com or Blogger?
The short answer is absolutely no.
The long answer is that I assume because you want to blog, you want to be able to make some money from it. Whether you want a six or seven-figure business, or if you just want some money coming in every month to make things a little easier financially, making money is good. When you work with WordPress.com, you can’t have affiliate links on your blog, which means any option to have affiliate links on your site is off the table.
The problem with other free sites (especially Blogger) is that they often have a clause that says they can shut down your website at their discretion. This means they can shut you down for no reason and you can’t do squat about it. This happened to a friend of mine who was making over $1,000 a month through her free blog, then one morning it simply wasn’t there. For the security of your business, never hand control of your website over to a company, friend, family member, or anyone else. You always want to be in total control.
What do I need to do to keep my blog legal?
(Yes, that’s my affiliate link, so if you buy through it I’ll get a commission, but I only recommend things I love and use.)
What do you do for social media?
I use two platforms for managing my blog’s marketing. I love Tailwind for managing Pinterest and Instagram, they’re the bomb and I have a free class on how to use them if you want help figuring out their system, or you can just get a free trial here*.
The other platform I use is Edgar, which is ah-mazing. I use them to share all of my content to my Facebook groups, I have one for Organize Your Biz tribe members and a few others. I love it because I can load up my content and Edgar will recycle it for me automatically and they have a ton of features you can use to make sure people aren’t seeing the same stuff over and over… I can’t say enough good things about their platform. You can get a free trial and $10 discount for them here*.
(*Yes, that’s my affiliate link, so if you buy through it I’ll get a commission, but I only recommend things I love and use.)
What theme do you use/recommend?
Are there other website hosts you recommend?
As a typical rule, I only recommend products I use and love here on the website, so first I’ll tell you I personally only use Godaddy for my website hosting. However, when I worked as a WordPress website tech assistant, I dealt with a lot of web hosting companies and so I know of others that I’ve had good experiences with, even though I have used Godaddy.
The only company I don’t recommend is Bluehost, and you can read about why I don’t here, and why I highly recommend you unfollow anyone who is telling you to use Bluehost, but doesn’t use it themselves.
Aside from Godaddy, WP Engine is a good host I’ve worked with – their startup plan is $28 a month when you use my link here