Phew, are you still with me? That was a bit of a task wasn’t it? I’m very impressed with your efforts though, and glad you are still with me after all of that technical stuff.
It gets easier form here so relax and enjoy the ride.
If you missed lessons 1 – 3 you can catch up here:
And just before we kick off with lesson 4 I need to remind you that I use affiliate links on this site and if you click on them and then go on to make a purchase I get paid a small commission at no cost to you. This is one of the ways that i monetise my blog and I will be showing you how to do this too in a future lesson.
So, now let’s get on with today’s lesson because I’m itching for you to get that first blog post published. Wow, can you believe you’ve come this far already?
Step 1. Make sure your blog is legal
There are a couple of things we need to add to your blog to make it all nice and legal so that it conforms to the new regulations governing the use and data collection by websites.
As usual, don’t panic, It’s quite simple to sort out and I’m going to help you, but you are going to have to do a little more techy stuff.
This is what you are going to need to add to your blog:
1. A cookie consent – the annoying thing that now pops up whenever you visit a website that you haven’t visited before (and even on some you have)
A cookie consent lets the visitor to your blog know that certain information is being collected from them as they navigate your blog. This helps to keep track of pages they have visited or sites they have visited.
You know how when you go to Google and the page you have already been to is highlighted in a slightly different colour (yes that’s how we spell color in the UK) to the rest? This is because the cookie knows you visited that site and has recorded that information so that you can get there again more quickly next time.
They also help with the user experience as pages that have been visited will be stored so that a user doesn’t have to keep reloading the site from scratch.
Anyway, that’s enough of that, suffice it to say that they are a good thing but you need to tell people you are using them on your site.
So how do you do that? You add a simple plugin. Watch this short video tutorial.
The plugin you need to install is called, surprisingly enough, cookie consent. It looks like this:
Go ahead and install it and then just check the instructions that comes with it for setting it up. It’s really simple.
Even if you are in a country outside the European Union you will still need to conform to it as you will no doubt be dealing with people who are in the EU.
There are 2 things you can do here and either one is absolutely fine. 1, you can consult a lawyer (solicitor) and get one drawn up for your blog or 2. you can go to Rocket Lawyer Uk (or USA equivalent) where you can create one online in about 15 minutes for free.
You don’t have to add this page to your main menu if you don’t want to but if you do I would add it as a sub page of your about me page. You can check the video tutorial in the guide to find out how to add a page (sub page) to menus.
Step 2. Add your draft post to your blog
Yay!!! Now it’s time to add your draft post that you worked so hard on.
How to do this:
- Open your blog in the dashboard area. To do this you usually enter www.yourblogname.com/wp-admin. this will take you to the log in page where you can enter the username and password to access the dashboard part of your website. You will see the black menu on the left of the screen when it loads.
- Look down the menu strip until you see posts – hover over it – click all posts. The first thing you need to do is edit the post that says Hello World.
- Hover over the post until the little menu options appear one will say edit (Don’t click on the name of the post and don’t click on quick edit).
- Go into the post and change the title to the title of your post. The title should be something that grabs attention. It should be the thing that gets people to click on your post and open it.
- Once the title has been changed go and find your word document with the draft on it and open it. Copy the draft (ctl C or right click and copy).
- Go back to your post and paste the draft into here. (Ctl V or right click and paste).
- Now go to the side bar on the post, the area to the right of where you type that is not part of the post, scroll down to the bottom until you see “set featured image”.
- Click on it. Upload the image that you saved for your post.
- Scroll back to the top of your post and click update, which is a button at the top of the side bar.
Congratulations! Your first blog post is now live on the internet for eveyone to see.
Don’t panic though. At this point, no one actually knows that you have a blog, let alone will come along to read it. In the next lesson I am going to be showing you how to let the world know about your blog.
But first you need to do some homework… Here’s what you need to do.
Look through the notes you made in lesson 1 to decide which will be the next problem you solve or question you answer
Repeat the steps you took to create this post. Brainstorm on paper, type it out in Word in rough, read through it to correct any mistakes and then leave for a while. Re-read it to make sure it makes sense, go and find an appropriate image from Unsplash.
Then rinse and repeat. You need at least 6 posts before we start promoting it to the world.
Off you go now and then come back for lesson 5. To make sure you don’t miss it, or any other useful information that I post, subscribe to my blog and you will get an email to let you know that I have published something.
See you back here soon.