So, you are thinking about putting up a blog this year. Should you buy a domain and hosting right away? It depends. If you are really serious about blogging and you have the budget for domain and hosting, that would be a good option for you. However, if you are having second thoughts and you just want to give blogging a try, or you simply do not want to spend money on domain and hosting yet, take advantage of a free website from Blogger or Blogspot.
Now, what is the difference between Blogger and Blogspot? Don’t be confused because they’re one and the same. Blogger is where you login, Blogspot is your domain extension. In short:
Login to www.blogger.com if you want to create a blog called phdocuments.blogspot.com.
I have two old and un-updated Blogger blogs – phototecture.blogspot.com and litratorama.blogspot.com. I created them both back in 2007; I can’t believe they’re still out there in the world wide web! That’s the good thing about having a free Blogger of Blogspot domain; it will be kept for as long as Blogger or Google wants it to be there, and without you having to pay anything.
Here’s a quick guide on how to create a blog on Blogger this 2018, in six simple and easy steps.
- Go to www.blogger.com and create an account. Blogger is owned by Google so you might want to use your Gmail if you have one, but any email address will do. Either way, Blogger will accept it.
- Upon signing up, you will be directed to your dashboard. This is where the posting and editing happens. There really is no required sequence at this point, you can immediately create a post or continue building the site layout first.
- You may want to start on your blog’s layout. Click on the “Layout” section on the left (first image), and the layout options will appear (second image). Always click on the “Save arrangement” button for any changes you make.
The layout shows you the available side bar locations. They are arranged accordingly for you to get an idea of where they are located in your page.
- One of the first things that you need to add are Widgets, or Gadgets. Click on the “+ Add a Gadget button” from any of the given locations to view your options. You can move these gadgets to your preferred location later on.This pop-up window will appear. You can simply select the basics from amongst these selections. You can always add or remove a Gadget later. For this example, let’s select Archive.You will get this Archive settings. You can type in any title you want, and select how you would like the gadget to look like from the given options. Do not forget to click Save. Or you can Cancel if you decide not to use the gadget. You will be redirected back to your Dashboard.
- To add a post, either click on the “New Post” button on top, or the “Create a new post” link in the middle of your dashboard.
You will then get this window where you could type in your blog post title, content, and labels. You can use any labels, and utilize them as categories later on. You can add an image by clicking on the “image” logo from the menu bar on top.I selected the last image that I have on my phone. Yes, I used my phone to create these instructions and screenshots. If you are on you laptop, you can select a photo from any locations in your computer.
Make sure to click on “Save” before clicking on “Publish”.Again, you will be redirected back to your Dashboard. You will then see the new post that you created. Click on “View blog” at the upper left portion of the window to view your blog.This is a preview of your plain blog, how do change it’s layout? Proceed to step 6.
- Go back to your Dashboard and click on “Themes”. You will be given a selection of free themes from Blogger. Select and preview any theme that you want. For this example, I selected the first theme under “Contempo”:
This is the preview of the theme:
This is now your new blog using the theme we selected:
These are only the basic steps and you can finish them in less than 10 minutes! Work on your theme and layout as you proceed. You may want to try all free themes to see which one you would like, along with adding or removing gadgets. You can also upload and apply a theme from external sources; there are lots of free Blogspot themes available for download online and most of them are easy to customize.
Take time in building and organizing your blog, don’t try to finish everything literally overnight. It will take hours and days of work until you get the layout and look that satisfies your taste and preferences. It’s a long process and that is fine, I guarantee that it will be a fun and exciting experience! I wish you all the best.