Having a blog sounds like such a good idea - building a website that will house all your fondest thoughts and dreams, curating articles you’ve written in the past and slowly creating a collection of your life’s most interesting stories. But when you actually start getting around to doing it, you start to wonder whether it’s even worth it in the first place. There are just too many pieces that you need to put together to get your blog up and running. For one, you have to find the best site to start a blog, then learn how to actually build one and then you’re going to need to maintain it.

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As with most things, one of the hardest parts of blogging is actually getting started. Let’s simplify it beginning with this guide to selecting the best website to start a blog and a few best practices on how to start a blog website in 2020.

Your options

In terms of the best sites to start a blog, you have a number of options these days. You’re no longer limited to the usual platforms such as Wordpress or Blogger. When choosing the appropriate blogging platform, think of what your content is going to be like. You want your blog hosted on a space which can accommodate the type of content that you intend to create. For instance, if you’re looking at creating a travel diary, you want to build your blog through a platform that enables you to host high quality images and even create multimedia galleries that document the places you have or will visit. If you are blogging with the view of making money out of it, you probably want a platform with AdSense support so you can add Google Ads to your site. A little bit further down the road, you might want to extend the features of your blog to include other website functions. In this case, a website builder like Strikingly would be a great choice. You can start with a free blogging account and then expand your site to include an ecommerce platform, for instance.

Of course, you’re not limited to site builders when it comes to websites to start a blog. You can even use social networking sites to host your content. A lot of bloggers are now using Facebook and Instagram to get them more exposure. You can also have the best of both worlds and integrate your social media pages with your blog site. Strikingly lets you add social stream sections and add social share buttons to your blog in a few simple steps.

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Best practices

Now that you have identified a website to start a blog, the next step is to actually build the website. Here are a few blogging best practices that you should always keep in mind:

1. Use keywords

The main point of starting a blog - aside from having an online journal if that’s what you’re building it for - is to get people to discover your work. Using targeted keywords in your content could help you reach your target audience. Brainstorm commonly used keywords in the niche topic that you want to build content on and include these keywords or keyphrases in your blog titles and meta descriptions.

2. Use a strong title

To get a good first impression, create titles that entice your reader to want to learn more. There are a lot of online tools such as the Headline Analyzer that helps you check the strength of your blog headlines.

3. Keep to the ideal blog length

Depending on your topic and industry, a good blog length should be anywhere between 600-1,200 words. You want to keep your audience engaged long enough to get your story out but you don’t want to bore them to death with an article that is way too long for a quick read.

4. Link externally and internally

Once you’ve started building content, you want to link your content to the other areas of your website or to previous articles. Revive old content by internally linking new articles. Link to authoritative sources or other similar websites to make your content more credible.