The reason I’m writing this guide is because I couldn’t find any like it. All the other guides don’t tell me the plugins I need, they don’t tell me how to optimize my blog for SEO and they overall give bad recommendations.
I’m not saying this guide is perfect, but it is how I would set up my own blogs.
If you want people to remember your blog you need to have an easy name. Think Uber, Facebook, SnapChat… all these are easy to remember names.
I spent hours and hours coming up with a name that wasn’t taken. It was boring but I feel like it was worth it. I finally came up with Zonifer.com.
Here are some ways to come up with a name:
- Use a dictionary to find words you like and then change a few letters. (e.g. conifer then I switched the “c” with a “z”)
- Create a list of words you like and look for synonyms on Thesaurus.com.
- Combine keywords together (e.g. Foolishness + File = foolishnessfile.com)
My favorite hosting is siteground. They offer you a free domain name with every package so you don’t need to purchase a domain name desperately. Just purchase your hosting from siteground and you’ll get a free domain name.
You can chat with their support team 24/7 if you have any problems and they’ll help you.
You have a lot of options here:
I’ve personally used StudioPress and I like the fact that I can move the sidebar from right to left or remove it completely. I haven’t used Thesis themes but many bloggers seem to like it. Both StudioPress and Thesis Themes have SEO benefits.
Email Marketing Services
If you’ve just got a coming soon page then I wouldn’t spend money on any email marketing services. Just use MailChimp until you launch.
If you’d like to send subscribers automatic messages then you’ll need an autoresponder. MailChimp doesn’t offer an autoresponder for free. You need to pay for it.
I personally use GetResponse.
I’ve heard good things about both Aweber and Convertkit. In fact, for bloggers I hear convertkit is the best.
Sign in to your dashboard, it’s usually domain.com/wp-admin and click on: Plugins > Add New. Then you can either upload plugins that you’ve downoaded or you can search for plugins available.
Note that not all plugins are available for search. You need to purchase them and download them from their individual websites then upload them as .zip folders.
URL: Go to Settings > Permalinks and under Common Settings select “Post Name”. This is the most SEO friendly URL.
Speed: Try not to download many plugins as they can slow down your blog. Also make sure to reduce your image sized before uploading any images. You can use tinypng.com or download WP Smush or both. Also you need W3 Cache or WP Rocket to improve site loading speed (pick only one).
If you’ve got $39 to spare then I recommend you get WP Rocket because it’s the best.
Keywords: You’ve already downloaded Yoast SEO and you’ll be using that for keyword density. For a 1,000 word piece you should aim to use your target keyword 3-5 times and make sure at least one of them is in the first 100 words. Here’s a video on how to use Yoast SEO.
Analytics: Hopefully you’ve downloaded MonsterInsights, now watch this video to set up your Google analytics.
For more on-page SEO optimization check out this Infographic by Brian Dean.
If you need any further help check out wpbeginner.com they’ve got every single help you can think of.
Or just YouTube it. You’ll find some really great plugin tutorials on YouTube.