Don’t fear starting a blog. It’s not as difficult as creating a website from scratch. The overall process of setting up a blog requires less technical knowledge in comparison with creating a fresh website.
Infact you may not necessarily need to have any programming or coding skills to do so. Doesn’t that sound great?
In this section, I will take you through step by step guide to starting a blog in South Sudan
Steps to start a blog in South Sudan include;
1. Get a suitable niche or blog topic for your blog
Don’t get lost with the English. This simply means choosing a topic to blog about. In fact, this is the most influential stage that will determine the success or failure of your blog in South Sudan.
Select a topic for which you have an interest and try as much as possible to acquaint yourself with the relevant knowledge and skills required for that niche.
You can gain knowledge through personal research or by simply taking short courses on that specific topic. Having prior knowledge about the topic is also an added advantage.
Select a topic that appeals to you on a personal level and you’re also passionate about it.
Don’t mix up unrelated topics on the same blog if you don’t want your blog to terribly fail. One reason South Sudanese bloggers fail is that they are jumpy, today they are blogging about Technology, and tomorrow about health and so forth.
For example, my blog is for Tech lovers, its niche is Technology.
2. Choose a unique name for your blog
Choosing a unique name for your blog integral step for securing a successful blog in South Sudan. It plays an essential role in your blog’s branding, marketing, identity, and search engine optimization (SEO).
An unattractive name that is bad and confusing can seriously hurt the ability of your blog to build a following. Choose a name that your followers will find attractive not just because you personally love it.
You don’t have to fall in love with your blog name as long as you don’t hate it, simply leave it to your audience to decide.
Getting a very good blog name that is unique will help you build a strong brand. However, if you pick a generic (common name), it will be hard for people to distinguish your blog from others.
If you are starting a personal blog, you can just select your name as your blog’s name.
For example, when I was deciding to start this blog, I wanted to use the name Milason as my blog name. But when I made a quick domain search, it was already taken and that’s when the idea of Milasona came up.
There are very many popular blogs named after their owners, take for example Neil Patel
So, just select a name that will be appealing to your target audience.
3. Select a blogging platform
The choice is absolutely up to you to choose what blogging platform you want to run your blog on. Anyone can create a free blog on wordpress.com, BlogSpot.com, or blogger.com and begin blogging right away.
BlogSpot is the best blogging platform for someone who is just starting blogging and cannot afford self-hosted blogging platforms like WordPress.
Just a hint: – WordPress is the most popular blogging platform powering over 30% of all websites on the internet.
There are three types of blogging platforms namely, free platforms, premium, and self-hosted platforms.
4. Check for the availability of your domain name and buy it for your blog
A domain is simply a virtual address for your blog on the internet. For someone to access your blog, they will need to first enter your domain address in the web browser address bar. A typical domain name is “www.milasona.com”
Your domain name is unique and can never be shared by anyone else. This means if you try to register a domain name and find out that it’s, already taken (registered by someone else), you have to choose another one.
Once you register a particular domain, it’s rendered taken and unavailable for anyone else. This means no one else will register your domain again.
Your domain may have an extension like “.com” or it can be a country or niche-specific extension like .ssd (for South Sudan), .uk (for the United Kingdom), or .news (for news related domains)
I always recommend that you go for the .com because of its popularity. But some other extensions like .net, .me, etc. can still perfectly work well.
A domain name is renewable once a year at the same amount you bought it. This simply means that if you bought a domain today from any domain registrant, you will be required to renew it every after 365 days.
If you fail to renew your domain after its expiry time, it will be deleted and made available for registration again. If you don’t lock automatic renewal on it, it can instantly get registered by someone else, and never shall you have access to it again.
Which means losing your whole blog plus its brand.
5. Choose a Webhosting service for your blog
You can buy Webhosting immediately after buying a domain name if you want to save on costs. Many hosting companies also sell domains. In fact, some companies like Bluehost even offer a free .com domain name registration for the first year.
Some of the popular companies that offer webhosting include:
I personally recommend Bluehost because it’s affordable and very reliable hosting partner. Bluehost apparently has one of the best and fastest WordPress hosting servers in the hosting industry.
However, you may choose another web hosting service as long as it’s fast and reliable. A good hosting partner should be able to offer you unlimited bandwidth, storage, and most importantly 24/7 support.
Some people buy domain names from one service provider and host with a completely different service provider but it’s recommended that you buy both domain and hosting from one service provide to easily maintain and manage them.
6. Create and launch your blog/website
Before ever thinking of creating or launching your blog/website, you need to ensure that all the pre-requisites below are met. It includes:
- Blog name
- A registered blog domain name
- Hosting service.
After checking that all the above requirements are met. You’re now ready to start building your blog. If you’re a complete amateur, launching your blog can seem so tedious and intimidating but I can’t emphasize enough how easy it is especially if you have some basic knowledge about the internet, software, and computers in general.
These are the two main ways you can get started building your blog/website.
- Coding your site from scratch
Coding from scratch is used to build complex systems like Facebook website, PayPal etc.
- Using Ready-Made Content Management Systems (CMS)
The other way is using an already made content management system (CMS) which allows you to create and launch your website even if you have zero coding knowledge.
CMS Software has been programmed to allow you to build a site and your only work is to add articles, photos, and videos. Am sure you developed dimples hearing this.
The most popular CMS present-date is WordPress (In fact my blog runs on WordPress). WordPress as you may know powers over 30% of websites on the internet. It’s known for its simplicity and complexity mashed together.
However, the exists other CMS software, for example, Medium, Drupal, Blogger, and Joomla but I recommend WordPress.
7. Install and configure wordpress.org on your blog
Do you recall when you bought a domain name together with a webhosting package? Well the webhosting settings was automatically configured for you by your hosting provider (Webhosting Company).
Inside your hosting account, there is software called the cPanel. The cPanel is very popular software that hosting companies use to manage websites.
- Depending on your hosting provider, you can access your cPanel account by logging into your hosting account (webmaster dashboard), look for a clickable link named “cPanel Login”. Webmaster dashboards can be customized although it depends on the web hosting company that you’re using.
- Scroll down to the software or scripts section until you see “Install WordPress” or something related once you’re successfully logged into your cPanel account. Once you click the link, a form will pop up requiring you to fill in a few details about your site and finally click install.
- You will automatically be re-directed to the WordPress login page and you will need your username and password which you created in the previous step before the WordPress Login page. In case you’re re-directed, you can log in via https://yourdomain.com/wp-admin
Just in case you’re unaware, your blog is successfully launched by this stage and you can access it by typing your domain address (for example https://www.milasona.com) in the browser.
Where you get stuck during the launching process, you can directly contact your Webhosting company for immediate support. That’s why I recommend you choose a reliable hosting company. Alternatively, you can Contact Me.
Configuring General Settings of your WordPress Blog
Your eye-balls must be tired by now, I know this is a long article but before you go, there are certain things that you need to do immediately after launching your blog. Keep in mind that we are not just starting a blog, we are starting a successful blog that will earn a decent income. Therefore we need to optimize our blog straight away from the very beginning.
Here are settings that you should configure to optimize your South Sudanese Blog.
- Go to settings
- Select General
- Edit the site title to your desired blog name and set your tagline(optional)
- Edit the email address to your personal email address
- The rest can be worked on later
- Then save settings
Google uses the link structure to rank many websites and that’s why it’s important to know what permalink structure your site is using. Permalinks are static links that guide a browser to a specific post/page. An optimized permalink structure contains keywords of a post and the title which makes it easy for Google to rank your post in search engines.
- Hover to Settings
- Select the Permalinks from the list
- Select the “Post Name” option as your preferred Permalink Structure.
- Install relevant plugins on your WordPress blog
One of the reasons WordPress is powerful and yet simple is its ability to use plugins. Plugins refer to extensions that offer extra functionalities to a website. They help to improve the performance of a website.
There are thousands of WordPress plugins available for use. Some are free whereas others require payment. However, if you install so many plugins, your blog will be bloated. I recommend that you only install those plugins that you need.
In order to install plugins: – Hover over plugins on the navigation sidebar and select add new then search for the plugin name.
8. Compose (Write) and publish your very first blog Post
Don’t get cozy. You are just about to publish your first blog post. Let me assume you already have a typed article in MS Word saved to your desktop/Computer. If not yet, consider coming up with one on any topic around your niche.
Follow these simple steps.
- Login to your WordPress dashboard (www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin) with your WordPress Credentials(email and password)
- Once you’re logged in, hover to Posts on the left panel and select the option Add a new Post
- Click on “Add New” and you will be taken to the post composing page
If you have already written an article in MS word, just copy and paste it there. In case you haven’t written yet, begin typing in the text area.
- Click on “Publish” and your very first post will be live.
Creating a blog post on WordPress is as easy as composing and a mail on Gmail or yahoo mail. To get a live view of how your blog post looks, click on your blog name on the left upper part of the dashboard.
9. Keep updating your new blog with fresh content
From this point on words, your job is now to pour out what is in your heart and mind. Keep your blog regularly updated with fresh and high-quality content.
If you have enough high-quality content, your content is likely to rank higher in search engines and generate traffic for your website/blog.
When it comes to the blogging venture, content is always the king. Start writing high-quality content straight away. You may not be a very good writer but if you stay consistent, you will eventually perfect it.
10. Monetize your blog
Now that you’re finally done setting up your blog and launched it, what next? How do you make money from it?
If you’re not blogging for fun, you should of course have a clear strategy to make money from your blog. It can be easy to establish a blog but very hard to make money from it.
Yes, it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme as some friends of yours might have told you. You have to hustle hard my dear like a hungry lion.
Firstly, don’t expect to generate any cash at least for your first year of operation. Divert all your time, energy, and strength on creating high-quality content, optimizing your blog, and networking with other bloggers in the same blogging niche through guest blogging.
In order to earn from your blog, you need a high volume of traffic but build traffic takes a lot of effort and time.
In South Sudan, many bloggers often monetize their blogs and website through Google AdSense and premium banners because that’s all they know. However, there are a lot more other ways.
Here are some of the ways you can monetize your blog and make money from it.
- Ads advertisement using ad networks like Google AdSense, Media.net, Infolinks, etc.
- Affiliate Marketing(for example Webhosting Affiliate networks, Commission Junction, Shareasale,eBay, Amazon Associates, Clickbank, etc.
- Premium banners. Sell premium banners on your blog (monthly/yearly). You must however have the right volume of traffic to convince advertisers.
- Digital Product Creation. Under this, you can create your own digital products and sell, for example, e-book courses, videos, etc.
- Got some unique skills? Offer services such as blog setup and design, Business Consultancy, Coaching, and Social Media Strategist, etc. for cash.
I have written a detailed article on the different ways you can monetize your blog. Check it out here:
11. Promote your blog content
You can never ignore this one. Even the world’s biggest brands still do advertise today. Blogging is a business and every business needs promotion. Even if you have the most attractive blog in the world, if people can’t visit it, you will definitely not make any money with it. Remember in blogging, Traffic Volume = Money.
So in order to make money with your blog, it’s very vital to get to the masses. Find a way to attract more visitors to your blog by promoting it.
Promoting your blog doesn’t mean you have to go around on the internet and annoy people with your blog links or nagging your social media pals by asking them to share your blog posts all the time. It’s very unprofessional and considered spam.
Do use this guide to start a successful blog. If you have any challenges or questions regarding how to start your own blog, I would love to hear from you. Feel free to share your ideas and suggestions on how I can improve this guide in the comments below.