It’s 2018…are food blogs still even a thing?! Ahh….yeah! And that’s why I’m going to teach you to how to start a food blog.
I had this exact question in my mind in 2013 so I decided to be a micro-food blogger and just post on Instagram. I figured that’s where my friends were and that was the future. Yes, and no. My friends are on Instagram and are interacting with me there, but I have no control over which of those friends see my blog. And with the new Instagram algorithm frequent changes, those impressions are less and less, even if you have 2 million followers like me!
When you own a food blog though, you are in control! And guess what? With 40,000 google search questions happening every second, having a public blog where anyone can search for your recipes creates unlimited opportunities to be found and to make some money!
Let’s get started with these 3 easy steps (that will take you 1 hour tops!) that I used when I started my blog in 2016. This also works if you want a blog in a genre outside of food.
Step 1: Host Your Blog & Pick a Name
So your blog needs to sit somewhere and that’s what a host is for. It allows your food blog to be viewed on the internet.
To do that, head to Bluehost (that’s what I used and it’s the easiest to start with. Please note this link is an affiliate link) and click on “Get Started Now.” You’ll then get the following screen. I recommend you pick the basic plan to get started with because it’s really all you need in the beginning. You can always upgrade later on as you need more website space.
Next is the fun part! You got to pick your domain name! My husband came up with Feelgoodfoodie, and it just clicked with me.
If you have any cool ideas, don’t google them. Just type them in and see if your domain name is taken. You may need to get a little creative here or just use .net like I ended up doing with Feelgoodfoodie. I already had such a pre-existing strong presence on Instagram and didn’t want to build something new.
If you previously registered a domain for a name a while ago, you can still use it wit BlueHost. There’s always the option to choose your domain name later after you finish setting up. But I bet most of you already have a catchy name in mind you’re just itching to register!
Next you have to finalize the payment plans. This is what I did. I unchecked all the boxes and just kept the Domain Privacy Protection. I think it’s important because it basically prevents your phone number and email address from being displayed to the public in association with your blog. The other options can be added later if needed and as you learn more about your needs.
Then you pretty much own the domain name, and you’ve got a place to host it! Moving along…
Step 2: Choose a Blogging Platform
A blogging platform is basically the software used to design your blog, add content and publish posts online.
I use and recommend WordPress.org (not WordPress.com)
There are basically two options: hosted or self-hosted.
- Hosted WordPress.com blogs are free, but limit your income potential. I would not recommend this.
- Self-hosted WordPress.org blogs cost a little money, but give you much more control, without a limit to your income potential.
The cool thing is Bluehost directly connects you to WordPress.org once you’re done selecting your plan.
You’ll be prompted to pick a free theme, but I recommend just going with the one that comes standard for now, and worrying about the theme in Step 3 below.
You’ll then get the following screen. Just click Start Building and it will take you straight to your new WordPress site!
Welcome to your little blogging world! In the screen below, I prefer not to click if it’s a Business or Personal site, and just click “I don’t need help.” Everything in black on the left is your dashboard. You’ll use that to publish posts, add plugins, upload photos etc. One important first step I did was I clicked on users and added “Yumna” as an admin. Then I deleted “Admin” as one of the users. This decreases the chances of your new site getting hacked.
Step 3: Design Your Blog
Now it’s time to give your blog some personality. The cool thing is there are hundreds of food themes available via WordPress.org that you can select from. Picking a theme that’s designed for food is great because it allows you to format your post in a way that will allow you to add Ingredients, Instructions, Cooking Time, etc. You can see all the food themes here.
If you’re looking for something more unique or premium, I would highly recommend using a Studio Press Themes – This is what I originally started using on Feelgoodfoodie for my first 8 months of blogging. I now have a custom theme that’s exclusive to my site, but I highly recommend starting with something from StudioPress that has an excellent reputation and strong technical support. Ahhh…I’m gushing over some of these themes. The Brunch Pro theme below gives me life!
Once you pick a design, you’ll be so excited to start populating content and then you’ll be ready to share your blog with the world! Congratulations! You’ve learned how to start a food blog in 3 easy steps. Now comes to fun part. Good luck and hope this was helpful!
Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. I have used all of the products listed below and recommend them because they are helpful and are companies that I trust.