Essay Example on Starting a Self-Hosted Blog Using WordPress and Hostgator

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University of Richmond
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In todays contemporary society, the usage of the Internet as a medium of sharing various forms of information has become a common phenomenon. Most persons publish different forms of contents such as entertainment, drugs, food and travel among others on their blogs and websites. For this reason, such content creators require an effective blog creating a platform and hosting service for their web contents. WordPress is regarded to be among the most effective platforms in the world for creating websites and blogs (Kreuzer, 2017). The service collaborates with the Hostgator web hosting service which is among the best web hosting corporations in the world. This essay is a comprehensive guide to developing a self-hosted blog using WordPress and later hosting it using the Hostgator cloud hosting service.


The WordPress can be described to be a Content Management System (CMS) as well as an open-source program that is based on both PHP as well as MySQL (Kreuzer, 2017). Normally, WordPress is installed on a web server, which can either be a network host or part of an Internet hosting service. For example, WordPress could be hosted on a network service such as the It could also be hosted on a computer that is installed with a running hosting package such as the In most cases, the local computer-based hosting of WordPress is done for single-user testing purposes. Moreover, it can also be employed for education purposes in various learning institutions.

As per February 2017, WordPress was being used by approximately 27.5 percent of the best 10 million websites in the world (Oleh, 2016). It was also ascertained to be the best website management as well as online blogging system that is being used on the web. Today, WordPress hosts over 60 million websites all over the world (Kreuzer, 2017). It is also used by 409 million persons who view approximately 15.5 billion web pages per month (Kreuzer, 2017). Moreover, users of WordPress publish approximately 41.7 million posts as well as 60.5 million comments on a monthly basis (Kreuzer, 2017). Additionally, the service was founded by Matt Mullenweg together with his partner Mike Little on May 27, 2003 (Naik & Maheta, 2017). Moreover, it is licensed under the GNU, GPLv2 registration by the Free Software Foundation (Naik & Maheta, 2017).

During the development of WordPress, there were supporting developers that aided in the creation of the program. They included Helen Sandi, Andrew Ozz, Dion Hulse, Andrew Nacin as well as Mark Jaquith. Today, WordPress is also supported by a community of developers are inclusive of the WP testers. The WP-Testers are made by a group of volunteers who test each new release of WordPress. The testers are normally the first to test the nightly builds, release candidates as well as beta versions of new WordPress modifications. Additionally, in case any errors are identified with the releases, the testers document them on a special mailing list that is managed by the WordPress corporation. These factors make WordPress a remarkably reliable web content platform that should be used in creating a self-hosted blog.

Creating a Blog

A blog is a terminology that is employed to describe a recurrently modified page of information on the Internet that is typically managed by a single person or a group of users (Oleh, 2016). A blog can either be written using formal or informal styles. On the other hand, a blogger is considered to be a person who publishes content on the blog, and he/she can choose an area or areas of interest to feature on the blog. There are six primary steps that a blogger must follow when starting a new blog. Step 1 entails making a decision on what to write about in the newly developed blog. In this case, a blogger can pick a variety of topics or decide to stick with a single topic of focus. Step 2 entails choosing a blogging platform to use for publishing the blog. WordPress is the best blogging platform that a user can pick due to its ease of usage.

Step 3 entails finding a host for the blog. A host publishes the blog online and offers blog owners a domain address. Hostgator is one of the best hosting services that a blogger can use for hosting his/her blog. Step 4 entails selecting an appropriate domain from a hosting company. The domain allows users to search the blog on the internet. Additionally, step 5 entails the installation of WordPress. In this case, the WordPress is the platform that allows a person to create, edit or modify his/her blog contents. Ultimately, step 6 is the last step, and it entails designing and publishing the blog. Also, there are several reasons why blogging is performed. Such include being used as a source of income, advertising, building a network and building a business among others.

Registering with WordPress

Step 1

So as to start using WordPress, a person must create an account at the WordPress official website. The account registration process is made up of 6 simple steps. The first step entails choosing the type of a site to create with WordPress. An applicant has a choice of 4 WordPress options to select. These include a blog, website, portfolio, and an online store. In this case, a blogger should select the blog option so as to enable him/her to start the self-hosted blog.

Step 2

Step 2 of the registration process entails selecting a preferred design to use with the site chosen. For instance, if a blogger chooses to create a blog, he/she can select a favorite design from the popular blog designs featured on the page. It is important for the blogger to have a rough idea of what he/she would like his/her blog to resemble. However, an applicant can have access to hundreds of other blog designs to choose from once the registration process has been successfully completed. Most of such blog designs are free and can also be customized to fit the blogger's preferences. The blogger can also have access to premium platforms, which are offered for sale in the WordPress marketplace at an affordable price.

Step 3

Step 3 entails choosing an address for the blog. An applicant is required to insert the preferred name for the blog on a search bar to attain suggestions on possible web addresses to use. Additionally, if an applicant does not have a preferred name for the blog, he/she can insert a name that best describes his/her blog. This way, the WordPress site offers a probable domain address that such an applicant can use for his/her site. Additionally, it is essential to choose a domain address that best suits the context or purpose of the blog. For instance, a professional blog should have a professional address as opposed to a social address which can have an interactive domain address.

Step 4

Step 4 entails selecting an appropriate pricing plan for the blog. There are four possible options that an applicant can choose. These include a free plan, a personal pricing plan at $2.99 per month, a premium pricing plan at $8.25 per month and a business pricing plan at $24.92 per month. All the three pricing plans are billed yearly. The difference between the four pricing plans is based on the features offered per every pricing package. For instance, a free user is limited to only six web page control features as opposed to business pricing plans applicant who has access to 16 web page control features.

Step 5

Step 5 entails creating a user account. In this case, an applicant is supposed to provide his/her her email address, username, and preferred password. The username could be the applicants name or a nickname. Additionally, the applicants preferred password must be a minimum of six characters to be acceptable for registration. Upon completion, an email containing instructions on how to proceed with the registration process is sent to the applicants email address.

Step 6

Step 6 entails activating the WordPress account. The sent email contains a confirmation button that redirects an applicant to the activated WordPress account once it is clicked. An applicant is them required to log in to his/her activated account, and he/she can then access the WordPress Control Panel (c-panel). The c-panel allows a blogger to insert or remove posts from a blog and also to view the statistics of views, visitors, likes and comments made on the blog.

Essential WordPress Tools to Use


Users of the WordPress may install as well as switch between the multiple theme options offered to them on the WordPress platform. This essential as it permits a blogger to change the appearance as well as the functionality of his/her blog, without changing the WordPress core code of the blog. To install a new theme, a blogger can install a theme directly using WordPress through the appearance section the Administration tool in the c-panel. Alternatively, he can copy theme folders directly into the themes directory section of the c-panel. Additionally, the themes operate through PHP, HTML as well as CSS programming languages. A blogger can also directly modify the three languages to add or omit some features on the blog.

Additionally, the WordPress themes are availed to users in two categories. These include the free and premium themes. Normally, the free themes are listed in the WordPress section of the theme directory. However, the premium themes are available to the WordPress users for purchase at the marketplaces section of the c-panel. Moreover, WordPress users are permitted to create and use their own custom made themes with WordPress.


The WordPress plugin feature permits a blogger to enhance the functionality of his/her blog. The WordPress plugins database has a total of 49,394 plugins that are available to users to enable them to customize their blog to fit personalized specifications (WordPress, 2017). Such plugins have a variety of functions such as creating content management systems as well as content displaying features. Some of the displaying features added through the WordPress plugins include the widgets as well as the navigation bars. Through the use of plugins, a blogger can also be in a position to make his/her blog to be more dynamic in its functionality.


These are applications that are offered by the WordPress to permit users to have access to their blog control features through mobile devices such as iPhone, iPad as well as iPod Touch among others. They are designed to regulate and manage new blog posts, comments, and views.

Multi-User or Multi-Blogging

Before the WordPress version 3 was developed, WordPress only permitted bloggers to make a single installation per blog. Nevertheless, the recent versions can permit bloggers to perform multi-blogging. This is a feature that enables a blogger to have multiple blogs that can be managed using a single WordPress installation. This is facilitated by using another feature called WordPress MU that makes it possible for bloggers to moderate their multiple blogging platforms using a single WordPress c-panel. Additionally, the WordPress MS offers bloggers eight new data tables for each of their multiple blogs.

Other Minor Features

WordPress also offer bloggers an integrated link management system. This is a permalink structure that offers a blogger the ability to allocate multiple categories to his/her blog posts. For instance, through the permalinks, bloggers can tag their blog posts to other posts on different blogs or websites. Additionally, WordPress offers automatic features. The features enable a blogger to assign text f...

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