You are reading a guest post contributed by Kimberly Lim – an expert in Blogger. You can learn more about her and her blog at IndieEscape.com
Blogger is one of the earliest and most reliable free blogging platforms (see comparison between free blog service vs. hosted blog) out there. Since its turnover to Google in 2003, its service has expanded and the overall user experience has improved. I recommend it to any newbie blogger who wants to create a simple personal online journal or just get a feel of how blogging is like.
Creating a blog in Blogger.com is quick and easy; let me give you a step-by-step walk-through.
1. Sign in to Google
Go to Blogger.com and sign in with your Google account. A Google account is necessary, so you have to create one if you don’t already have it.
After signing-in, click on the Get started button to begin setting up your blog.
2. Register your blog
This page might draw you into a blank if you haven’t thought about your blogging plans through.
Blog Title – Create a simple title for your blog. Users typically use their name, blog name or brand name in this field. No need to waste a lot of time here because you can edit this later on, like when you have something better in mind.
Blog address (URL) – Blogger blogs are hosted by Google for free, under the domain blogspot.com. Enter your desired blog address here and click on Check Availability.
The system will automatically suggest other possible blog addresses in case your desired one is already taken.
Don’t fret if you have plans to buy a domain name. A blog address in blogspot is necessary to complete the registration. You may change it into your .com (or other) domain later on.
Please prove you’re not a robot – Type in the captcha code before hitting on the continue arrow.
3. Pick a Template
Blogger provides free templates which are fully customizable.
Select your starter template from the list. To help you decide – look at the format of the text and images and see which one is best suited for your blog.
The colors, background images, fonts, sidebar widths, and a slew of other settings can be tweaked in Blogger’s Template Designer later on. You can also upload Blogger templates from other sources into the system and even hardcode the HTML if you wish.
4. Customize your blog
Congratulations! Your new blog is now live!
You may go ahead and hit on the start blogging arrow to begin writing your very first blog post, or you can further explore additional settings for your blog.
customize how your blog looks – this link should take you to the design page where you can add or remove widgets and play with the layout of your blog.
Advanced Setup Options:
Set Up a Custom Domain – You can get a custom domain from this interface, or get it cheaper elsewhere (try wholesalerdomains.com) and link it up to your Blogger blog.
Import Blog Tool – This tool is for the non-newbies in blogging. It will help in migrating blog files from other blog platforms into Blogger.
Right now, the blog is up but there is nothing on it.
5. Write your first blog entry
I know you are excited so go ahead and make a test post. From the dashboard, click on the big, orange New Post button.
Blog posts are entered a text editor interface which is very user-friendly. Images, videos and hyperlinks can easily be embedded using single-click buttons. To create tables, embed scripts and other codes, just switch to the Edit HTML tab.
Right now, Blogger is running a beta version of their interface (read: new and improved). I suggest switching to the new interface now, to get yourself familiarized with the new set up. To do this, click on Try the updated Blogger interface link on the upper right hand corner of the screen.
The new interface is sleek and easier to navigate.
You may Save or Preview your blog entry first before hitting the Publish button.
A few more tips…
- To access more functions (add a favicon, try out new features), log-in to draft.blogger.com instead of www.blogger.com. You can also make Blogger in Draft your default page.
- Blogger allows a user to create multiple blogs from a single log-in account. These blogs can be accessed from the Blogger dashboard.
- Explore the other features of your blog. You may create Pages, add Adsense ads, check the stats and moderate comments, among others.
- Further customize your blog settings, starting with a blog description.
- Subscribe to Blogger Buzz to receive the latest updates and first dibs on new features.
Blogger can serve most blogging needs for free. Of course, there are rules and regulations that must be complied with- typical to any service provider. But whether you’re blogging for fun or for profit, this is a great place to start!
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