The Ultimate Checklist Before You Launch Your Blog

Feb 20, 2018 | Blogging Tips

 

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Launching a blog is so exciting and nerve-racking at the same time! To save time I created the Ultimate Blog Launch Checklist to make sure I had everything put together.
 
I’m huge into making to-do lists. It makes my brain feel at peace when tasks are listed out on paper– as opposed to jumping around my head all crazy. Let’s dive in and get started with the Ultimate Blog Launch Checklist.
 
 
 

Know Your Niche

It’s important to have a game plan before diving into blogging. It’s vital that your niche is clearly defined. Write down a list of ten posts you could write about and see what they all have in common.
If you’re leaning towards writing a broad lifestyle blog, keep in mind that you can still share your personal life while still being in a niche.
 
 
 

Get Hosting

If you’re serious about making money, then hosting your site is a must. I recently switched from Bluehost to SiteGround and I’m so happy I did.
 
I saw ads for Bluehost everywhere, so I assumed it was the way to go. My first site was constantly going down–multiple times a day.
My big launch day of this website was a nightmare. I lost everything. EVERYTHING WAS GONE! It took me a sleepless night and an entire day to get everything back up.
 
SiteGround has been a dream. Right now they’re doing a special of 60% off their “Grow Big” plan which allows me to have multiple domains.
 
SiteGround offers a free transfer service if you already have hosting and want to switch. My entire site was transferred over to SiteGround. The whole process took less than 24 hours. My site never experienced any downtime during the transfer.
SiteGround is actually $30 cheaper than Bluehost and I have an upgraded account . Also, my site has never been down or experienced any error messages. Did I mention that their customer service is amazing?
 
 
 

Choose a Domain Name

I changed my mind so many times trying to come up with domain names.
Be patient with yourself. Search through a thesaurus for different words if you need inspiration or get stuck.
Choose something that feels right to you.
 
 
 

Install WordPress

WordPress is free and is the most popular interface to build and edit your blog. There are other options available as far as a blogging platform.
Because WordPress is so vastly used, it’s very easy to find answers to questions that arise while blogging.
 
 
 

Choose a Theme

There are tons of themes to choose from in all price ranges. I spent a lot of time looking for the perfect theme. I even eventually bought a $50 theme that I thought would be the best thing ever. I ended up disappointed.
I was looking for a theme that would let me customize things exactly how I wanted even though I had very little web design knowledge.
Then I found Divi.
Divi is the number one website theme builder on the planet. I wish I had heard Divi before I wasted so much of my time on BS themes.

Design a Logo

You can get a custom logo designed for you on Fiverr at a low price.

You can create one yourself on graphic design websites such as Canva or PicMonkey.
 
 
 

Choose Branding Color and Style

Choose a color scheme and fonts that work well for you.
 Your branding style should be incorporated in all your content such as– pictures, graphics, posts, etc.
 
 
 

Install Google Analytics

This is a must for reviewing your website traffic. Another great tool is Google Search Console.
 
 
 
 

Create Site Pages

  • Home
  • About
  • Blog
  • Contact
  • Privacy Policy- needed if you’re selling services, courses, or products.
  • Terms of Service- needed if you’re using affiliates
  • Services/Shop- You don’t need to have a shop or services available when you first start out. It’s something to put in the works though.
  • Disclaimer- needed if you’re offering a service such as coaching.
  • Start Here
  • Podcast
  • Vlog
  • Resources
 
 
 

Create Sidebar

  • Search Bar
  • Author- social media follow button
  • Categories
  • Popular Posts
 
 
 
 

Install Plugins

The big ones I’d suggest are:
 
Pinterest Pin It– a must for generating Pinterest traffic Yoast SEO Pretty Links
Google Analytics Dashboard
Insert Headers and Footers
Smush
Pretty Links
 
 
 
 

Choose Email Service

I use MailChimp. It’s free until you hit 1,000 subscribers. Once you hit 1,000 subscribers– paying more won’t even be an issue!
Build that list, mama!
 
 
 
 

Create Social Media Accounts

Pinterest Facebook Twitter Google+ Instagram Linkedin Tumblr
Medium
StumbleUpon
 
 
 
 

Get a PayPal Account

PayPal is a great way for your affiliate accounts to pay you! It’s also great for your shop when you start selling products or services on your blog.
 
It’s a good idea to open a separate bank account to keep your income and expenses separate from your personal account.
 
 
 
 

Sign up for Affiliates

You can choose not to sign up for affiliates until you get more traffic to your blog. You can choose not to use affiliate programs at all.
 
I chose to sign up for affiliates before I launched my blog. I knew I had things I wanted to write about that included the affiliates.
 
If you already have affiliates in mind, then sign up and start writing.
 
There’s nothing wrong with monetizing your blog from day one.
 
 
 

Write Blog Posts

I launched my first site with 8 posts. I’ve seen people launch with one post and I’ve seen people adamant that you need at least 20-30 posts before you launch.
 
Lots of content is always good but don’t hold yourself back from launching because you’re worried about not having enough written.
 
Launching can be a great way to motivate you to write more content.
 
 
A comprehensive checklist is a must for the new blogger. Finally launching your blog after all the hard work you’ve done.
Congratulations on your new blog!

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Hey, I'm Nicole

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