What You Need to Start a Blog in College

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Blogging is a great opportunity for students to share what they’re thinking and learning about, give and receive peer feedback, and make connections with other students around the world. 

Other services, such as Google Docs and Google Slides, also provide opportunities for students to share their work with the world. Many of these can be accessed while offline, which is ideal for writing during all times of the day. Users can then copy their written content from any of these solutions and then add them to their WordPress blogging platform for posting to their site.

Students may use public writing platforms for collaborative writing projects, research journals, student portfolios, and more.

College students, especially journalism majors, are more likely than ever to take the plunge and set up their own websites and YouTube channels. College doesn’t teach you anything, but it’s by pursuing these hobbies that you’ll develop skills that are relevant to postgraduate work.

Getting Ready to Start Your First Student Blog

Whatever type of blog you want to create, the ability to write regular blog posts can help you improve your writing skills and communications abilities, analysis, and interpretation skills, as well as help develop a network of like-minded readers, students, and friends –and even potential employers.

Creating a student blog and a supportive network where you can share your ideas can make you better able to shape claims, affect the debate, and eventually manage your time more effectively. A good way to approach this, is to think about what type of information you are looking for online when it comes to your college experience, and how you can provide similar value to other students that might be looking for the same.

Best of all, blogging about such topics can bring residual ROI year after year as millions of new students continue to enroll. As a new blogger, you will have many exciting times and goals ahead. Such accomplishments include going live with your first blog post, picking a domain name, or even making some money in the process.

As a student, you might even be able to pay off your college tuition or room and board as a result of your blogging. This of course will take time, but it’s important to first recognize the opportunities in blogging, so you know how to pursue them.

Choose What You Want to Blog About

Think regarding your topic before you start blogging. Consider things you’re passionate about, related to or unrelated to your university studies, which may also be important to your future career aspirations.

A further reason not to start blogging without a strong area of interest is because you’re going to bore yourself (and your readers) to death. A student blog should be fun and something that you want to keep coming back to, so make sure you’re engaged in what you’re talking about!

Decide What Blogging Platform to Use

When you first learn how to start blogging, most people prefer to use one of the many free blogging platforms available to host their blogs. There are lots of things on offer, and they can be very easy to use–some just need you to enter the file.

Using free blogging sites, you’ll be able to create your own design, solid readership, and understanding how to effectively blog without having to spend any money.  If you want your blog to be exclusive, customization is the right way to go. 

There are many models available to users of free blogging platforms, and the process is as simple as choosing a ready-made design with a style that you like.

Choose a Quality Domain Name

Choose a domain name that puts yourself in a visitor’s shoes. You’re surfing the World Wide Web, and you see a banner for a blog post that’s attracting your attention. Your domain name can act in a similar way. If it’s short, easy to remember and brandable… even better!

Maybe a friend on Facebook shared it with you, maybe it came up with a Google search, or maybe it’s just a link in another article you’re reading…

It’s also a good idea to stick with a dot com domain name and shy way from using net or org. There are plenty of other domain TLDs available, but the dot com is the most professional. And more importantly, changing your domain at a later date and time isn’t something you will want to deal with.

Purchase a Web Hosting Plan

In order to have a professional website or blog, you are going to need to sign up for a professional web hosting plan. Don’t worry if you’re unfamiliar with the term, a “web host” is kind of like a web site shop on the internet. 

You pay a small fee to keep your website on the Internet, to handle all your visitors, to back up your website, to provide customer support, to maintain the protection of your website, and so on…

Best of all, there is no coding, programming or design skills required. Most web hosting solutions will connect to your domain name and instantly have WordPress installed.

Install WordPress

Speaking of which… it’s time to set up WordPress with your new domain and web host connected. But don’t worry about that. WordPress is not complicated to install. 

In fact, many premium WordPress hosts (like Name Cheap) make the process ridiculously easy— no panel or localhost know-how required.

If you’d like to learn more about WordPress and what makes it the best CMS out there for bloggers, you can read up on that here.

Design Your Blog by Selecting a Theme

Time to have fun! This is where you’re going to decide how you want your blog to look. Choose the blog style you want to create for the first time.

You should choose a theme according to your style. You can bug WordPress Premium Themes. WordPress, however, provides millions of free themes. You can choose a theme and find a bunch of free themes that are easy to install.

Set up the Basics: Your Bio, “About Me” page, etc.

When creating your blog, it’s important to remember that it’s more about your audience than yourself… but it’s also important to let them know who you are, why you started a blog and what your passions and expertise are. All of this will come together when working on your About Me page.

While it might seem like a simple task, your About Me page should be more than just a quick blurb about yourself. Try to make it interesting, as it will be one of the most read pages on your site.

Expect to spend some time tinkering with your web and exploring the functionality of your WordPress site. It’s also a good idea to add your social profiles and personal pictures to relate with your audience.

Going Live with Your Student Blog

Now that your blog has been set up, you’re ready to start posting! Before sending you off on your way, here are some tips for successfully launching your blog: 

  • Have at least 4 – 10 posts already published before you officially promote your blog, so your viewers have more than one post to look at! 
  • Don’t worry about page views at first, and stuff will naturally build momentum! Join other Facebook blogger groups for support! 
  • Install the Yoast SEO WordPress plugin to easily implement a search engine boosting practice on your blog.

Best of luck, and be sure to share your best content on social media often. The more backlinks and site visitors you get, the more likely you are to find success and growth over the lifespan of your blog.

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