How to Start a Blog And Earn the Senior Web Designer Badge

I know many of you look at the web designer badge for Senior Scouts and fear how complex building a website could be. I have gotten emails from readers asking for help getting started with a website and how to teach their girls how to put together a blog of their own.

Web Designer Activity Booklet

If you have ever wanted to learn how to build a WordPress website from scratch and wanted to earn a badge doing it. The Senior Web Designer activity booklet will help you do both. This 33 page booklet will start out by helping you decide on a purpose and goal for your website. You will learn how to design the site structure and create a mockup/wireframe with all the content you want on your website. Then you will dig into the training portion of booklet with 4 modules from setting up your hosting, domain and installing WordPress, then understanding how to add content and media to website, how to secure and backup your website and over 8 additional resources to keep learning more beyond this beginner training course. When you are done you will have all the tools you need to build a amazing website about any topic you choose.   If you don’t have Seniors yet but are a leader looking to learn this is great for you as well to create a site for your troop or to build a personal blog for yourself. It also includes videos that go along with PDF so you can learn in the style that works best for you! Learn more about this activity booklet and get yours today!

If all you need is a jumpstart here is everything you need to do to have a working WordPress site in 20 minutes.

How to start a WordPress blog on Bluehost

If you’re looking to start a WordPress blog for cheap, then choosing Bluehost for your hosting needs may be your answer. Bluehost is a great web host and I personally have had a great experience with them.

I have used a pile of different hosting providers but I always come back to Bluehost because it not only is the easiest to use, it also has amazing customer support when you are having issues. Lastly the price is not overwhelming for people on a budget like all us leaders. You can start your girl’s blogs or troop website with them for as low as $2.75 a month (this low price is through my link only)! They also throw in the domain for free if you use this link. Just purchase 12 month or longer and domain is free  (a $15 value). I highly recommend signing up for the 12 month hosting plan through Bluehost. It’s affordable and you save more by signing up for more time rather than month to month. And with that hosting as a Leader you can always purchase another domain later and start your own blog or website because after you and your girls use the Web Designer Activity Booklet you will know all the basics of building a WordPress website. I also included a pile of other online resources to take your skills to the next level past the beginner program I put together.

Lets jump in and get started. Today I’ll share with you the first steps to get a blog/website up and running. It is true if you follow these simple steps below in less than 20 minutes you will have a website that you can start using today.

Before jumping into how to build you’re website I want to quickly share a example of how you’re girls can make their blog about anything. This is an example of a blogger who has built a blog from scratch using WordPress sharing her passion of fashion and beauty, here is her website.

Where do I Start?

To start with you will need a place to host your website. There are 100s of hosting companies out there, but for a WordPress site, and for ease of use, Bluehost is at the top of my list.  There are many reasons I choose Bluehost:

  • Number 1 reason the outstanding customer service and technical support – I called them with issues and they walked me through everything I needed to do to set up my WordPress site the first time (But of course you wont need that because I am going to give you all the steps)
  • You are under no contract so you can cancel anytime which is great with the unknown of having a troop and not knowing if girls will want to continue with website or with program.
  • And the price so affordable, if you sign up for hosting through this blog post you get a special offer of hosting at  $2.75/month for 12 months. But the best part for leaders who just want to build a site with your girls and then delete it you can buy one month instead of paying for the 12 months up front. (Price is a bit more but option is there)
  • They have a 1-click WordPress Installation is perfect for beginners 

To set up your hosting account with BlueHost and installing WordPress, follow the steps below.

Set Up Your Hosting Account

When you are ready to create your blog, follow the steps below to buy hosting for your blog.

  1. Go to BlueHost website and click the “Get Started Now” green button.
  2. Click on the package you are interested in.
  3. If you happen to already have a domain you want to use enter that or sign up for new domain.
  4. Enter your personal and payment information.
  5. You will then be asked to give a password to use make sure to secure that info somewhere safe.

Using the same domain to teach girls how to build a blog.

How you may ask? Using subdomains, which are attached to the front of your main domain. They usually follow the form subdomain.maindomain.com. They behave very simmilar to a normal domain. You can point them to a folder to host a website just like a normal domain name.

Creating A Subdomain

  1. Log in to your BlueHost cPanel account.
  2. Click the Domains tab at the top of your account.
  3. Click On Subdomains on the submenu.
  4. Enter the desired subdomain
  5. Choose one of your Domain Names from the drop-down list
  6. Enter the Document Root, this is the folder that contains the website you want to show.
  7. Click Create

Installing WordPress

Now you have your domain and hosting set up now you can download WordPress to your domain and/or subdomains.

  1. Log in to your BlueHost cPanel account.
  2. Find the Website section and select Install WordPress.
  3. Click the Install button.
  4. Choose the domain name to install it to. In the field next to the domain, you can enter a subfolder such as ‘blog’ or leave it blank if you want the site’s main page to be the blog.
  5. If necessary, you can edit the email address, username and password for the new WordPress installation. Click “advanced options” and you can change those settings.
  6. Read through the license and service agreements and check the boxes.
  7. Select the Install Now button.

If you have any issues the best feature of BlueHost is there support, contact them and they will guide you through everything.

I know it seemed like a lot but you can totally handle the technical side of blogging– don’t let it stop you from doing this with your girls, once you have done it once you will be amazed how easy it comes to you! Sure, you will do a lot of learning as you go along, but once you have the basic building blocks in place, you are a lot closer to getting to do the fun stuff: which is creating amazing content!!

I know you want to do this and help your Senior girls earn their web design badge, Start your own troop website with BlueHost here.

If you sign up for BlueHost, but you are still super confused for any reason (such as how to set it up, pricing, etc.), you can always send me an email at jodicarlson@leaderconnectingleaders.com and I can help you out. That’s what I’m here for so don’t be afraid to send me an email it will also help me know what everyone is struggling with to provide more helpful resources.

Now You Have The WordPress Website Now What?

Below are a few helpful tips to get you started building a amazing website for your Troop and/or for the Seniors to earn the web design badge

  • You log in and have no idea where to start. Well I can help with the Senior Web Designer Activity Booklet I cover 24 different lessons showing you exactly how to become a pro at building a WordPress website, I share 8 additional resources to take your web design skills even further. If you don’t know how you want your site to look, use the worksheets provided to design your navigation, brainstorm ideas for content, and plan out your content before digging into building the site.
  • Once you have your site, save the WordPress login information that you receive in a separate email. You will receive this email after you complete the process of downloading WordPress.  This email will include your WordPress login URL (your URL is separate from everyone else’s and it’s the only way you can access your WordPress account), your username, and your password. You want to keep this email safe.
  • Navigating the site:
    • You can add and create new posts by clicking on “Posts” on the left-hand side when you are logged in. If you want to add a page, simply click on “Page” works the same.
    • If you want to add an image, click on “Media” on the left-hand side.
    • You can go to “Appearance,” then “Widgets” in order to add items to your sidebar, footer, and so on.
  • If you are looking for a way to send newsletters or emails to your readers, I recommend mailerlite its easy to use and offers some great features to customize templates and set up automatic emails. Also it is free until your up to 1000 subscribers
  • There are a number of free themes you can get under “Appearance” then “Themes” but if I were choosing the best theme out there for ease of use and no need to learn any code I would recommend DIVI WordPress Theme which you can get from Elegant themes, when you buy the one theme you get access to all 87 themes they have available which is a great value if your girls want to try different themes.