Picking a Theme for your Blog: At this point you should have purchased your domain and hosting from Bluehost. If you haven’t, then click this link below to get that setup (you can refer to my blog post “How Do I Create a WordPress Blog”) :
The time has come and you are picking a theme for your blog. What you need to know is not all themes are created equal.
There are a ton of free themes at WordPress.org. But to be honest, I don’t know one blogger who uses a free theme. There are many reasons for this…first, this is a real business and you want to look current and professional…second, themes are not too expensive and a professional one is worth it to capture your visitors. If you really need to use a free theme, then go to WordPress.org and search their themes, otherwise here are some of your better options:
These theme template companies are the best out there for WordPress Blogs. There are literally thousands of companies that sell themes, but these are the best and most functional.
I buy most of my themes from ThemeForest. They offer thousands of themes and you can filter through them to find themes that are meant for bloggers. How it works is you look though the themes and find one that you like best. You create a new account and deposit money into your account and use that credit to purchase your theme. Most good blog themes run about $50-$60.
WHAT YOU NEED ON YOUR BLOG
Important things you want to look for when picking a theme for your blog:
- Advertising space. This is how you make a huge chunk of change on your blog. Once you have a lot of followers, people will pay you for advertising space. So be sure to pick a theme with advertising blocks in the side bar, footer or header.
- Simple and Clean. A magazine theme may look attractive, but I would recommend staying with a simple blog design. A busy magazine site can be confusing and feel overwhelming for the reader. Simple and clean is the best way to go when it comes to blogging!
- Side bar. Make sure your theme has a sidebar, just like mine does over there >>> This is important as you will have information to display there that will help the reader navigate your blog site.
- Mobile Ready. This is huge! Be sure that the theme is mobile ready. This means that it will look good on tablets and smart phones. Not only is it important for it to look good, but your Google ranking also depends upon being mobile ready. Most themes now are mobile ready, if you happen to purchase one that isn’t, you can fix that by installing a mobile plugin that will make your theme mobile ready. More and more people are using their phones and tablets to surf the internet, so this is important to make sure your blog can be seen easily.
TIME TO DOWNLOAD AND INSTALL YOUR THEME
Once you are done picking a theme for your blog and have purchased it, you will have access to download it. When you download it, it will be in the form of a zip file and will most likely download to your “Downloads” folder on your computer. It may download somewhere else, so pay attention.
You will need to double click on the zip file and unzip it. In that unzipped file you will find folders and the zipped theme file. In some cases you will also have a zipped child theme as well. Please keep the zipped theme file and the zipped child theme zipped. DO NOT UNZIP THE THEME FILE. If you are confused about this, look for the “documentation” folder or link and there you will find all the instructions on how to install your theme.
Generally, to install your new theme, all you have to do is be logged into your WordPress control panel and go to the menu on the left side, go to “Appearance” and “Themes”.
You will see some pre-installed free WordPress themes. Among those you will see an empty box with a + sign. Click on that and follow the instructions to install your theme zip file. Once it installs, it will give you the option to “Activate” it.
That’s it! Read your documentation completely so you can learn how to configure your theme. Remember, this is your business and you need to know the ins and outs of everything in order to be successful.
I have more blogs coming regarding, “plugins”, “SEO and “tools” to help you learn more about WordPress and all it offers bloggers. If you want to study up on WordPress ahead of time or you need help troubleshooting something, go to WordPress.org. Picking a theme for your blog is easy!
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