Are you thinking about how to start an interior design blog but do not exactly know where to start? Are you feeling overwhelmed with all the technical set ups? Not sure from what angle to start from?
Then you have come to the right place.
To help you out, I have compiled a free, easy to follow guide for setting up blogs tailored specifically for the home decor and interior design niche.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I get a small commission that the company pays out to me, if you set up a blog through my recommended link.
How to Start an Interior Design blog without being technical?
I promise that this is pretty straight forward and you don’t need to be a tech wizard, a marketing pro or have previous experience to follow my guide. Any one can start a blog and that is truly the beauty of blogging.
You just need to follow these simple steps below on where to start and how to start setting up your interior design blog and start spreading your passion in no time.
TOTAL TIME: 30+ MIN
Starting a design blog on a budget?
Absolutely it is possible! My step by step guide is focusing on a budget friendly version.
If you want of course it is possible to start a free blog but I wouldn’t recommend that if you are looking to possible make an income of it.
- Computer and internet
- Passion and your creative mind
- Curiosity to learn
- A cup of coffee
- What makes this How To Start an Interior design blog guide different to other guides?
- #1. Why do you want to start interior design blogging?
- #2. Pick a decoration or design blog niche
- #3. Blogging Platforms
- #4. Domain name and Web hosting
- #5. Set up your domain & Web Hosting
- #6. Picking a blog template
- #7. Important elements for a home decor & Interior design blog
- #8. Set Up Your Blog Structure
- #9. How start start your first Blog Content
- #10. Install Plugins
Want to start your blog
If you want to skip my full guide here but want to jump over to my recommended blog set up web page. You are a few clicks and a cost of 3.58 Euro / Month away, to have your blog live.
What makes this How To Start an Interior design blog guide different to other guides?
- A blogger
- Full time digital marketer (mainly focused on traffic from search)
- Hosting and online marketer consultant
- Ex interior design consultant
What can we guarantee
- Easy and effective set up recommendations
- Tools and methods for traffic growth from search (SEO and Pinterest)
- Tips suiting an interior design and home decor blog
- Additional experience in marketing and blogging
- Potential side income from the blog
- Connections within the decoration and design industry
- New blog friends
I used blogging as a tool to start a career in Digital Marketing
How To Start An Interior Design blog
Step By Step
#1. Why do you want to start interior design blogging?
- Do you want to share your passion of home decor with others?
- Are you an interior designer wanting to share your design projects and experience with your potential clients?
- Are you a design student wanting to have a creative outlet and build up a portfolio to show when graduating?
Why is the “why” helpful?
While there is no right or wrong reason to the “Why” one should want to start a blog, it can be very helpful to have an idea. This also helps as you will be motivated to work on your blog more often.
The “WHY” also give you more information to base decisions on:
- Blog niche
- Blog design template
- Focus topics in menu structure
- Type of content to create
On the contrary side, sometimes it is good also to allow a natural creative process to happen after a blog is set up.
The process itself can lead to new learnings, knowledge and experiences.
There is no rule, that you have to have a perfect idea in mind before starting. If you have been thinking about the perfect idea for sometime – my advice is – just go for it!
In fact if that is the case, jump directly over to the set up of WordPress step (in 15 minutes you will have your blog live).
That is how I started back in 2007 and I have no regrets.
#2. Pick a decoration or design blog niche
The world of interior design and home decor field can be very broad (and there are also already plenty of design blogs out there) which is why niching down to a specific area within the field can be helpful.
Both for you as a blog owner to stay focused but also for your future audience.
If you in the future are interested in getting organic traffic from Google then having a specific blog niche is recommended. Google likes blogs that have expert people writing or sharing ideas.
How do I Pick a Niche?
Picking a niche most probably comes very natural, especially after thinking about the step above – on why you would like to have a blog in the first place.
But in case you are still not sure how to niche your home decor blog down, then below I have collected a few ideas.
Follow your passion…
Home decor and interior design blogging niche Ideas
- Scandinavian / Bohemian etc
- Office designs / hotel designs / restaurant designs
- Luxury design
Since a large amount of blogs exists out there, my suggestion is to find a niche within home decor and interior design field, and then go even deeper by selecting and combining multiple focused sub niches.
Example: Home decor + DIY + Scandinavian, Home decor + Renovation + Minimalism, Office design + Minimalism
You will have an easier chance to stay focused and get the audience to trust your expertise.
When is the best time to start a blog?
You can start a blog at any time! However, starting this year, in 2020, has it’s own benefits.
- You might have more time on your hand.
- You might be looking to strive to generate another income (long term).
- You might be looking to learn online marketing skills that can help you get a full-time remote work.
#3. Blogging Platforms
There are a few different blogging platforms out there, example Tumblr, WordPress, Blogger and Squarespace.
I would highly suggest to use WordPress for any blogging site – it is easy to use and connects well with plenty of different added programs and tools (plugins). WordPress also have plenty of options in regards to designs. Also if you are curious into growing traffic from Google, WordPress is your match.
Design Studio 210 is set up using WordPress and for this reason, this guide will focus on setting a blog on this platform.
When it comes to WordPress you can either have a free WordPress set up (wordpress.com) or a paid hosted version.
I would suggest going for the paid hosted version as you will have much more control especially if you wish to turn it into a business.
Free vs Paid
– Free versions will not allow you to have your own domain name
– Usually comes with a lot of limitations
– May force you to display their own adverts
– Usually much slower
– Paid version will allow you to have your own domain name
– Will let you have extra control of your website/blog.
– Easier to extend later on
What makes WordPress the best platform?
- Friendly for Google which can lead to increase of traffic
- Easy to use, very popular, Content Management system (good knowledge to have for future career)
- Supported by plenty of plugins and developers. (Example newsletters, social platforms, polls)
- Stunning and easy to use designed themes (Both free and for a decent price)
- Easy to use plugin to help to optimize for Google traffic
#4. Domain name and Web hosting
Now that you have selected WordPress, there are two other decisions that are important to get your blog online.
- What domain name (blog name) will you choose. Item 2
- Which web hosting (where the site lives online) will the site be hosted on.
Before continuing further, let me explain some more what these are.
Blog (Domain) Name
This will be the name you will have as your blog name and can also be viewed as your store front if you are using it to grow into a business.
Your blog name is the name you will be saying to your design peers, when you go around the design fairs or just to be able to share it with your friends.
Imagine you saying “Hey I am –your name-, I am the owner of –blog name– ” next time you are visiting your local design trade show.
A domain name consists of a name, followed by a dot (.), and two or three letters.
The most common types are “.com” domain names. This website’s domain is designstudio210.com.
The “tech” word for “.com”, “.net” etc is “Top-level domain”.
What to think of with domain names?
- Make it easily associated with your design + niche + your why (Easier for your audience and also for Google to understand)
- Keep it short and sweet!
- Make it memorable (If you are on a design fair, will people remember it easily?)
- Avoid using numbers (Take it from own experience here. It complicates life.)
- Decide if you should go for a .com or go for a country specific one like for example .se
- Think long term (Especially if you are creating it to support a potential business goal)
- Avoid hyphens and strange characters. Again keep it simple!
- Pick a unique name. You do not want to have a similar name as another online brand/business/blog. (Challenging now with so many domains taken. But be creative!)
- Say the name out loud! And test it on your potential blog reader.
- Take your time to decide!
If you want to reach a global audience, I strongly suggest to use a .com website. Other top-level domains can include the internet country code such as .se for Swedish based sites, .co.uk for the United Kingdom audience, and .no for Norway.
Recommended Blog Name Tools
Do a search on Google for the names that you are thinking of. Check for any bad associations with the name or if the name can be associated to other niches other than home decor or design.
- Social media
Make sure your blog name is available on all social media platforms (Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook etc).
- Name generators online
If you wish to get some ideas on domain names using a name generator online can be somewhat helpful. Such tool will give you ideas around a specific topic you are typing in.
- Available domain name
You can also easily check if the domain you wish to have is available by trying out the below domain name tool.
#5. Set up your domain & Web Hosting
Now that you have selected your blog name, the next step is the set up process.
Yes you are 1 step away to be sharing your design stories online!
For an easy and safe set up of your blog, my best suggestion is to use a company called Bluehost.
By using my link here you will be able to sign up for a monthly fee from €3.58/month.
This platform has a super easy set up process while it is also easy to be able to maintain your blog in the long run.
The good thing is that you will only need a few clicks to complete this process – and you will have your interior design blogging journey, a reality.
I love all things blogging so you are more than welcome to ask me any questions you might have to be able to set up your blog on caroline(at)designstudio210.com or in the comments below.
I can also help you to connect you to my lovely contact person over there if needed for that extra support.
COST: 3.58+ EURO / MONTH
- Free 1 year Domain name
- WordPress theme activated automatically
- Automatic WordPress updates
- Free SSL Certificate (Security certificate)
Follow my step by step guide below OR simply Click on this link, fill in details and site is live.
How to start a blog on Bluehost
SET UP PROCESS
- Go to Bluehost using my link here
Click on the “Get Started” button
- Select the Basic plan
The basic plan will cover all you need for your blog.
- Add your Domain Name
Write your blog name (domain name) that you want > press “Next
- Create your Account
Fill out your information. Important is that you double check all areas and especially your email account details.
- Fill out Package Information
My suggestion is to pick the basic account plan for at least 36 months since this will be a better deal. You can un-tick all the extras like Domain Privacy, Search Engine Jumpsart etc. (You can add this on later if you want).
- Enter your Payment method
- Crete a Password for your account
Follow the instructions you get on the screen to create a password.
- Choose a WordPress Theme
Bluehost connects directly a WordPress theme to your blog. If you want to chose another theme, there are plenty of designs to pick from. There is a selection of free and premium.
Read more below for ideas on how to pick your WordPress theme.
Congrats! Take a deep breath! You have your first blog set up!
What to do next?
Your blog is active – amazing! The next steps that I am advising here is relating more to the look, structure and to make your first content pieces on your blog.
#6. Picking a blog template
You might already have your first WordPress blog template picked.
So this step might not be relevant to you…
But I wanted to highlight this section still since it is an important step for your blog brand. It is now the vision of your blog (brand or business) will come into a visual reality.
The beauty of WordPress is that you can chose between free templates or opt for stunning designs made of others that can be purchased for anywhere between 20 – 80 Euros.
What to look out for?
- Responsive theme and mobile friendliness (Google prefers responsive themes and mobile friendliness. Look for this feature in the themes and this will help you to gain organic traffic)
- Theme style should suit your brand message and tone
- Features – what features are included
- Search engine (SEO) friendly
#7. Important elements for a home decor & Interior design blog
- Wide images
Good quality images are important and can get you more traffic from image search and from Pinterest.
- Blog home page with categories
Pick a template that show posts by categories or tags instead of just the traditional, latest post scroll on the front page.
Easier to story tell and you can make the more popular content visible for longer.
- Pinterest Share buttons
Some themes already have integrated that images can be shared on Pinterest. It is important to let your audience easily share your curated images to their boards. It also acts as a good traffic source.
There are also plugins that you can easily install at a later stage for this.
- Shop related products
Look out for themes which already include shop related products integrated on the blog home page and also on landing pages.
Great for affiliate marketing.
#8. Set Up Your Blog Structure
This is the step where you have decided on your blog content theme and want to start implementing the topics you want to write about. These topics will then be structured up in categories and be shown in the menu section on your blog.
It is important to keep categories simple, and avoid creating too many. Keep it as a rule to only have a category if you have (or you are planning to write) more than 20 articles in that category.
Categories are what your blog menu will be built from.
Like this your user will identify straight away the topics that you write about.
Google will also understand that these are the most important topics that you cover and want to be known for.
If you are interested in getting traffic from Google, then categories are a great way to use to push topical relevance by certain keywords. Example, if you have a “home decor” category, then I would write some content on the category itself and target “Home decor” keywords like “home decor ideas”, “home decor photos”, “home decor tips” etc.
To help the organization and structure even more on your blog, you can use WordPress “Tags” on each post. These tags helps you to explain even more what a post is about. Just as with “Categories”, each post can have multiple “Tags” assigned.
If your category is Interior design and your sub-category is Scandinavian design, then you can have multiple tags, for example “bathrooms” and “light design”.
As touched on above, the menu is the first element that a reader will see when they pop in to your blog.
Personally I like to use the menu as a way to explain directly to a reader “this is what my blog is about”.
As a rule, when it comes to the menu – keep it simple!
Add around 4-6 menu items which can be categories and pages, like for example, your “about me”, “contact” or why not, a “resource page”.
#9. How start start your first Blog Content
In your WordPress dashboard over at Bluehost, you will be able to see an area called “Posts” and “Pages” on your left side of the screen.
This is your main area where you can manage and start your blog posts and pages.
What can you do with blog posts and pages?
- Set publishing day
- Publish your content
- Write and style your content both visuals, graphics, videos with different elements
- Set author
- + much more
TIPS FOR WRITING BLOG POSTS
- Use plenty of images (good to be shared on Pinterest)
- Use headers to structure up the post
- Use bullets
- Structure your post to be interesting to read (Key take-aways, sum ups, tips etc)
- Avoid too long sentences and paragraphs
- Use plenty of white space
- See the post as a visual storytelling
- Limit image file size since these will slow the page load (there are plugins to do this for you)
Pages Vs Posts
Pages and posts should be used in different ways. I use Posts more for the frequent blog posts (news, articles etc), while pages are good for “About me”, guides, resources etc. An example of a page can be found here.
What are pages good for?
- More flexibility individually per page. In every page you have control to enable or disable comments, sidebars, widgets, and different headers among others.
- Pages are good to use for About us pages, resource pages and other type of information that you feel will give value to your audience.
Have fun with this. Can’t wait to see your first blog contents go live.
If you are stuck on where to start with your writing then I have a post that might help out > How to overcome writers block – with the imperfection makes perfect method
#10. Install Plugins
Plugins are kind of a small program that you can download and install in your WordPress. These plugins can help you to both organize, market and keep your site away from lets say spam.
Here is list of some of the free plugins that we use:
- Yoast: A tool to help you to optimize for organic search experience (SEO)
- Akismet: Keeps away spam from your site.
- MailChimp: A plugin that allows you to get new subscribers.
- Easy Social Sharing: Easy to add social buttons in different places on the blog
- Jetpack: Added optimization tools for your blog posts and pages
- Ultimate Blocks: Tool that helps you to style your post with list styles, CTA buttons etc (a like my post here)
Keep the amount of plugins you have active in your WordPress back end to a minimum – the more you have – the more it impacts the page speed, load time and security risk.
- Start your blog in 15 minutes on Bluehost using my link here
- Pick a topic that you have passion for
- Any one can start a blog
- Learning how to blog will add skills to your CV
- Your blog can become a potential extra income source
Do you still want blogging help?
I am happy to help out.
Write any questions you have regarding setting up your blog in no time, and I will happily help out.
“Interactions and knowledge are key for growth”
Ready to start your blogging journey?
Ex Design Consultant. Design Curator. Online Creative. Curios minded. Love living and sharing a creative life through -The Interiors, The People, The Art, The Architecture & The Places. Design to me is about creating a story – it is about understanding what matters and how to create something unique which speaks your personal story.