How to start a blog for 1 dollar now

Don’t Have Money to start a blog? You need $1 to get started!

How to start a blog for $1! This is a challenge! However, it’s not impossible.

In this article, I am going to talk about how I would start a blog if I had only $0.88 for a budget!

I will divide this post into a few sections, and go step by step with you through the process of starting the blog with only $1 as the total budget.

How to start a blog for $1. Step By Step

Step 1: What do I need to start a blog

Since my budget is tight, I will need to keep things as simple as possible.

So what do I really need to start my blog?

  1. A Domain Name (e.g. bloggingtribe.com or awah.net)
  2. Hosting (to serve my website to my visitors)
  3. WordPress (so I can actually post content fast)
  4. A good theme (to make my website look good)
  5. A few plugins to speed up my website, secure it, backups, and SEO.
  6. Content (to have something so I can call it a blog)
  7. A newsletter to build my own audience.

In this post, I will only cover the first 3 steps since my goal here is to show you how to start for just $1.

 

Step 2: Calculate how much each would cost me

Now that I defined what I need to start with, I will start my financial analysis.

I will need a few items. So let’s cover them one by one and see how it’s like!

Item 1. A domain name

A domain name is important to me because I don’t want to start a trashy blog! I want to actually start a real blog!

With a budget as tight as $1, I should forget about a proper domain name.

First, decide on a domain name you want. I am not talking about the domain extension( like .com or .net) but talking about the actual domain name.

For example, bloggingtribe is the domain, and .com is the TLD I will be using or the extension.

PS: Read my guide here on how to pick a domain name and hosting for your blog.

So I will go to namecheap.com

I see the following screen:

namecheap homepage

I type in my domain of choice which in this case “awahmohamed”:

and I get this!

Scrolling down a little bit, I can see prices ranging from $0.48 and above!

I look around and see a domain that I could handle starting with. So I pick “awahmohamed.site” to be a personal website:

picked a domain name

PS: This is not the best Domain Name I could’ve picked. But I am trying to beat myself here so I will roll with “awahmohamed.site”!

There for $0.88, I get a domain name! It really won’t matter what extension I use. What matters most is my content. However, for branding purposes, I always recommend going for a .COM or a .NET. Otherwise, you are good to go with whatever domain name you choose!

So I go on, buy it, and go to the next step.

Ps: I now have $0.12 remaining!

 

Item 2: Hosting & WordPress

With hosting, I have two options. I can get a hosting package from anyone, or I could do something that will set me up for the future.

I would personally want to start with a VPS.

A VPS stands for a virtual private server.

The difference between getting a VPS and a shared hosting is that with a VPS you technically have access to the server.

You can set up whatever you want and need on it from an email server to everything else.

With a VPS, I can also scale my website as I grow without limiting myself or paying extremely more than I should like other hosting providers.

Also with a VPS, I can host multiple websites at the same time! So for $5, I can host any website I want for no additional cost for as long as my server can handle!

I can also run any script without my hosting providers sending me emails day and night telling me I am using too many resources and I have to pay more.

My choice is usually DigitalOcean. Simply click on the link and it will take you there.

Use my link to get $10 to start with immediately. This is crucial for our target of beating our budget!

You should see a site that looks something close to this:

digitalocean home page with $10 credit

Click on the banner that says you’ve got $10 from a friend. It will take you to the signup page which looks like this:

complete your registration and you are good to go!

 

You now have $10 to start with. However, I would recommend depositing some money, but for a start, you can just simply use the $10.

 

When we are starting, we want to use the smallest possible droplet that DigitalOcean offers. So we will go with the one that costs $5 a month. Remember we have $10 to use so this shouldn’t be a problem.

 

To do that, click on the top bar on “Create” then select “Droplet”.

The Create button is on the top menu. It the green button.

digitalocean menu

The drop-down menu should look something like this:

Once you click on “Droplets”, You will see a page that looks something similar to this one:

Digitalocean create droplet landing page

On that, click on One-Click-Apps. And scroll to the bottom and chose WordPress. It should look something similar to this:

Digitalocean one click apps select wordpress

From there, scroll down and chose the first option in the droplet size:

and then click on Create at the bottom of the page. It looks like this:

 

Digitalocean select droplet name and create droplet

And that’s it! I got a server and a domain and so far I spent $0.88!

 

Isn’t that fantastic???

 

Now while I am still on DigitalOcean, I would go to Networking on the top navigation bar.

Enter your domain and click on “Add Domain”. The page should look similar to this one:

Digitalocean networking add a domain

and from there, I will be presented with a dashboard. There are two fields to fill.

Now there, you will want to tell DigitalOcean where you want your domain to point to. In other words, what server should it use?

Now, remember we created the server! So now what we will do is point it there!

There are two fields to fill. For my own security reasons, I won’t be able to show you ( I can’t show all my servers and their IPs in public).

Here is how to fill the fields:

On Hostname put: @

On “Will direct to”: chose your server.

After filling all the details, the page should look like this:

Once that’s done, click on “Create Record” and that is set!

Now we go back to Namecheap and we edit our domain to point to DigitalOcean.

If you don’t know how to point a domain to nameservers, simply check out this tutorial on how to point domains to nameservers on NameCheap.

Alternatively, you can ask their support team to help you out.

The nameservers you’d want to point to are:

  • ns1.digitalocean.com
  • ns2.digitalocean.com
  • ns3.digitalocean.com

Give it like 30 minutes and you should be good to go!

From there on, you have WordPress and a domain name!

Your next steps would be to choose a good theme for your blog and add your plugins and write content!

I will cover those topics in more details later on, but the purpose of this post was to show you how you can start blogging for less than $1!

Do you have any questions or comments? Share them with me in the comments section below!