Starting A Blog: Best WordPress Themes for Lifestyle Blogs & Set-up

You now have a choice.

WordPress or Squarespace?

The reviews are mixed. I’ve heard Squarespace is great for the super non-techy type.

However, since I wanted to learn all of that tech stuff to build up a resume while learning, I opted for WordPress. In my opinion, it allows more customization and the tools that I wanted to have experience with.

I’ve been amazed the variety of plug-ins I’ve found for all sorts of random tasks at hand that make life and blogging that much easier. Learning WordPress hasn’t been as hard as I thought, though certainly challenging at times. After sticking with it, I can say I feel I made the right choice for my goals.

Continuing this blog series (after previously writing about the name, the niche, and the networking), I’ll be sharing what I know and helpful links for doing it yourself. If you choose (or have chosen) the route of Squarespace, let me know your thoughts! I plan to dig deeper into that platform once I catch up on the things I’m studying at the moment.

This post may contain affiliate links, which help me continue to create awesome content for you & costs nothing extra! I only talk about brands I have personally used and found to be worthy of passing on, I hope it can be a helpful resource for you. You can read more about this in my affiliate disclosure. Thanks for sharing the love!

1. Hosting

I signed up for Bluehost, after seeing it highly recommended on many different sites. They offer a great introduction price that’s hard to say no to when you’re looking to launch a blog! Paired with GoDaddy to set up a domain name with ease at the same time, you can’t go wrong.

Purchasing a hosting site is something you can’t get past if you’re wanting to go the professional blog route.

For only a few dollars a month, you’ll be able to get a quality site up with a .com and WordPress!

Then you can start diving into the world of learning about all of its features, which can be a very valuable asset when looking to get a remote job (as I found when I landed my first gig)!

I highly recommend this hosting platform + WordPress for cultivating a valuable future skill set.

When I first started off with ambitions to be remote, I had no idea what I was doing. Every spare second I had was spent learning about the blog world and googling, googling, googling anything I didn’t understand but realized I needed to learn more about. If you work towards your goals and push yourself the extra mile, the achievement alone will fuel you towards success.

Jumpstart now to give yourself a better future. What you do today can affect your tomorrow, waiting until you’re ready won’t make you any progress on your goals.

 

2. Installing WordPress

This can seem a bit tricky, but if you follow these instructions you shouldn’t run into too many problems.

The number one thing I can tell you, as so many other bloggers will: go down the rabbit hole of Google if you get stuck on something. You’ll find your way out and it will feel so good. WP Beginner is a great resource for all things WordPress related.

3. Choosing the best WordPress themes for lifestyle blogs

When I was deciding on a lifestyle theme, I had a bit of an idea of the style I was going for. It’s important to remember that one theme can have many flexible variations. Because of this, I wanted to choose one that could change and evolve with my brand if I wanted to switch things up.

First starting out, I thought I would just get a free theme to save money and customize it with my HTML & CSS knowledge to my liking.

Let me give you my best word of advice here: don’t do what I did!

What I thought would be an easier route in saving myself some money wasn’t anywhere near equaling the amount of time I put into it. Calculate your worth per hour and estimate how long it will take. If it’s going to take you longer than that, it’s worth the purchase.

I would highly suggest buying a premium theme regardless as it has saved me so much headache and allowed me to kick start my blog faster and easier. These themes are also updated more frequently and some even integrate premium plugins with the purchase!

Trust me when I say it’s worth it. You can find plenty of wonderful premium themes in the $30-60 range and if you keep your eyes open, you might just find one on sale (like I did).

So here’s my list of what to look for when purchasing a premium WordPress lifestyle theme:

  • updates: how frequently it’s been updated/when the last update was
  • extras: what it includes that separates it from the rest
  • ratings: how many & best average overall
  • sales: how many they’ve sold, then compare that to the number of ratings
  • responsiveness: how it looks and functions across multiple platforms (phone, tablet, computer)
  • customization: ability to change and manipulate your theme as you please

The site with the best wordpress themes for lifestyle blogs I found when searching was Theme Forest. They have so many options specific to niches, you’re guaranteed to find something that will work for you.

 

4. Installing Your Theme

This is probably one of the most simple steps.

After installing your theme you’ll want to read the manual that came with your theme purchase. Each theme will have its own ways for customization, so a one-size-fits-all guide isn’t really an option for specifics.

This is another big bonus to having purchased a theme, normally some kind of support is included and Theme Forest itself gives you 6 months of support. This means you don’t have to spend as much time fiddling with it to learn how things work and can get started on the important part – running that blog of yours!

Read a simple instruction guide to upload your themes .zip file to WordPress.

5. Bonus: A few of my favorite theme options from when I was choosing mine!

Don’t just take my word for it, though. Look, compare, and do your own research to find the best price point with the options that you need.

When I was comparing, these were the best WordPress themes for lifestyle blogs that made it to the top of my list based on what I was looking for. I spent hours (I’m sure far too many) making sure I made the right decision, so my hope is that your takeaway from this will save you some time and research!

Himmelen ($29)

Let’s Blog ($49)

Notumn  ($28)

Rosemary ($49)

Wonderblog ($49)

Cheer Up ($54)

Noémi ($49)

 

What advice and resources do you have from when you started your blog?

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2 Comments

  1. Froni December 1, 2017 at 2:42 pm

    Love this. Very helpful info. I’ve heard of squarespace but haven’t checked it out. I’m enjoying wordpress too.

    Reply
  2. Tracy December 1, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    I’ve never heard of Squarespace but doubt I would ever move away from WordPress. However, I have a free theme and have often wondered whether I should buy my own! Thanks for the great tips!

    Reply

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