Setting Up A Free Website

Setting Up A Free Website

Setting Up A Free Website

Setting up a website is now days a pretty easy task. I had no experience of web design when I set up my first website over 10 years ago. Yes it was very basic but it worked. That website is still running today and its called Estartit Holidays

Since those days website building has become much much easier and now anyone with no experience can build a beautiful looking website that looks great on a computer screen, tablet and even a phone.

So lets takes you through making a website in just a few EASY steps!

1.)   Decide on your website name – personally I think this is pretty important as it tells people what your website is about. We have picked names for our website which gives people an idea of what they will see on the website. (for example and both very different websites but you get the idea of what they are about just from the name.

A good name can also help with Search Engine Optimisation (this is how you get found in google, yahoo and the other search engines people use) don’t worry we’ll cover this in SIMPLE terms in another blog once you have set up your website.

This useful web name checker can tell you whether the name you are interested in is available.

Web Name Checker

Also decide on whether you want a .com or webname. A is probably a good idea  if the website visitors you want to visit your site are going to mainly from the UK. If you are looking to attract visitors to your website from other parts of the world, then a .com would be a better option.

2.)  Once you have decided on your web name and checked it is available, you are ready to build your website. Building your website has become so much easier than it ever used to be. I’m assuming you are reading this blog as you are relatively new to website building and want the easiest way to set one up.

So lets make it easy! My suggestion is to use a web building programme, not only is easy to use but its also very cheap or can even be free (I’ll explain the free option shortly). Website building programmes enable you to simply design and create your own website.

I’ve tried a few website building programmes and my first choice for designing really great website very easily is Weebly. There are others that are pretty good too. Here are a few suggestions

We’ll use Weebly as its my first choice to show you what’s possible to make your own website easily.

Weebly Free Website

Just to show you how easy it is take a look at

This is a website I set up recently and I did it totally for FREE. I’ll show you how to set up an account and get going shortly, but just to explain how you can have a FREE website. is free because if you take a look at the webname, instead of paying for a webname such as, I have used Weebly’s free option which just includes the word .weebly in the webname and they allow you to have this for FREE. I explain this in a little more detail as we set up an account.

So lets set up a FREE Weebly Website!

1.)  Go to the Weebly website at ““. You will see an account creation form with three fields (Full Name, Email and Password), as well as a few other buttons (this includes the “Log In” button).

Sign Up To Weebly Free Website

2.)  Sign up for a Weebly account. In each field in the short account creation form to the left, type in your full name, email address and password. Be sure to write these details down so you don’t forget them next time you want to log in. Once each of these steps has been completed, click on “Sign up. It’s FREE!” You may well be asked to verify yourself once you click the sign up button (this is really simple just follow the instruction on the screen – this is just asked to make sure you are a real person).

Register For A Free Website

3.)  It will then ask you to choose which type of website you would like to build. You will have two options to choose from — website or website with online store. Click on the website button.

Select A Free Website

4.)  Choose a theme for your site. You can do this by glancing over the options, selecting whichever one interests you the most, clicking on it and the website framework is automatically loaded for you.

Choose A Website Theme

So for instance if you click on the “Wag & Paws” theme above shown by the red arrow, the website framework is automatically loaded for you and will look like the below.

Your Website Theme Builder

And now click on the “start editing” button at the top of the page.

Editing Your Free Website

5.)  Choose a name for your website. This is where you can choose the FREE version we mentioned early (we have selected  “thepetsittingcouple as our domain name).

Select A Domain Name

You will be given two options “Professional Domain or Subdomain” (the bottom one “Subdomain” is the one to select for the FREE version) the automatically added at the end”. So for our webname it is “ “. This is the URL at which people will find your website and which you can send to people you’d like to visit your website.

Select A Free Domain

If you want your own webname without the which is the paid option “choose a Professional Domain from those listed  (we would choose for our webname from the options.

Choose the subdomain option for the FREE version! Well done, your free webname and website are all ready for you to start working on to create your very own personal website. Click Done to finish.

Subdomain Setup Complete

Brilliant that’s it all set up and your now ready to start designing!

We’ll do a blog full of tips on how how to design a really nice Weebly website very soon, but until then have a go at dragging in elements and change them for your own text and photos using the guides below. We’ll be back soon with the second part!

Designing and editing your website. Drag elements to the box that says “DRAG ELEMENTS HERE” (these can be found under the small element boxes at the top under “W Free).  You can add text to the title of a page by clicking on “My Site” and using your keyboard keys to edit the text.

Click on “Publish” when you’re satisfied with your website. Doing this will make it available to the public. You can still edit your website after it is published.

The best thing to do is to play about with the dragging of elements and keep publishing so you can see how your website is progressing.

For more resources for Weebly web design you may find the following useful

Thank you for visiting our Blog, we would really appreciate your comments,  your thoughts on it,  or your experiences to share and if you have any questions.  There is a comment box at the end of this blog page and we will be so happy to get back to you, to answer and to give any help/advice we can.

You might also like to take a look at these:

Setting Up A Blog

Setting Up A Blog

Setting Up A Blog

Blogging has become a popular way of sharing adventures, tips, guides and a host of interesting articles written quite often by people who want to share their personal story or have lots of experience on a particular topic or are just very passionate about the area they are blogging about. My biggest tip about starting a blog would be to choose an topic that you have a real interest in as this will make writing blog posts much more enjoyable, naturally more informative and you will be able to add your personal experiences to help others, making your blogs of even more interest to readers.

OK, so lets go through the steps of setting up a blog.

The First Step – Picking A Name For Your Blog

Obviously this will very much depend on what your blog is going to be about and as I mentioned choosing something you are passionate about or experienced in will make writing blog post so much easier and enjoyable. When you’ve decided on the topic of your blog, choosing a name is the first step. Try and choose a name that is based around your blog topic, how I like to think of it is that it says what its about. As an example, our blog is about our experiences as pet sitters travelling the world, so we called our blog thetravellingpetsitters. Simple really! So have a think about it.

A good name can also help with Search Engine Optimisation (this is how you get found in google, yahoo and the other search engines people use) don’t worry we’ll cover this in SIMPLE terms in another post once you have set up your blog.

Once you’ve thought of a name you now have to see if you can get a domain name close to your name if choice. In our case we wanted thetravellingpetsitters and luckily the .com was available. This useful name checker below can tell you whether the name you are interested in is available. It might take a little bit of time and often the name you want will already be taken, so you may need to compromise a little with your name choice!

The Second Step – Getting your blog online.

So you’ve picked your blog name and chosen your domain name, so lets get going on the next step which is to get your blog online so your blog posts can be read across the world! 
You will need two things to get your blog online – hosting and software. 

Luckily these two things come hand in hand now days and one of the most popular hosting companies is Bluehost as you can easily set up your blog name and use WordPress to build your blog. I use this company for the following reasons.

  1. Easy to register your blog name
  2. Simple installation of the WordPress software to build your blog
  3. Bluehost has been recommend by WordPress since 2005 and currently hosts in excess of 2 million blogs and websites
  4. 24/7 customer service and web chat help desk

Here’s how to get set up:

1.)  Click here to open the Bluehost website and benefit from the special offer for new customers and then click “get started now”.

Get Started Blogging

2.)  Select a plan that suits your requirements, for new bloggers the “Basic Plan” should be more than adequate.

Blog Hosting Plans

3.) In the “Create a new domain” box type in the domain name that you have chosen from earlier when you were thinking about choosing a name for your blog in Step One and click next.

4.)  Create your account by completing the details requested on the sign up page along with your billing information.

Create a login password for your account so you are able to sign in and out from any device to make updates to your blog. You will then be asked to choose a theme for your blog, you can easily change the theme at anytime, so don’t worry about choosing one that isn’t quite right for you in the long run.

Choosing a blog theme

Once you choose your theme, WordPress will install and your blog software will be ready for you to use. When you see the message “All Done!” click on the “Start Building” button to log in to your account.

How to login to WordPress

The Third Step – Building Your Blog

OK so you are all ready to start sharing your stories with the world! Start by logging into your account. To do this type in your browser (your blog name plus wp-admin) so it should look something like this This should bring up the login screen as in the image below. Your login name and password will be in the email that was sent to you from BlueHost.

Login To WordPress

Once you have logged in your dashboard page will open, which is were you can build pages and make any changes to your blog. If you take a look on the left hand side you will see a list of various folders called posts, pages, media etc. Now if you scroll down to “Appearance” and click on “Themes”, you can change the theme that you chose when signing up earlier, if you are happy with the theme you already have then just leave it as it is.

Choose a blog theme

OK, now that you’ve decided on your theme, lets start to building a blog post. If you scroll down the left hand side again and click on “Posts”.

How To Build a Blog Post

You will see that there is already a post listed called “Hello World!” This a default post that comes with all new blogs, we don’t need this one, so to delete it just hover over the name and click “Trash” which is located just under the name.

Deleting a Blog

To create your first post, simply click “Add New” under the Posts section.

Add A New Post

You have now opened up the editor page, so type the title of the blog post at the top of the page and some content in the main text section as shown below.

Blog Title and Description

If you would like to add an image to your blog post (You can see that this blog I have written and you are reading has a mix of text and images), simply click the “Add Media” button and click the “Select Files” button to upload images from your computer.

Adding an image to your blog post
Once you have uploaded an you can resize it should you need to by simply clicking on the “Edit Image” button (this is located on the right hand side in the section labelled “Attachment Details”). When you have the image ready just click on the “insert into post” button in the bottom right hand corner.
Optimising A Blog Image

Finally, while you are working on your blog post its always a good idea to click “Save Draft” while you are going along, I’ve had times when I’ve been working on a piece and all of a sudden something happens and I haven’t saved my work and I lose it all.

When you have finished your blog, click the “Publish” button and your blog will be live for everyone to see.

Thank you for visiting our Blog, we would really appreciate your comments,  your thoughts on it,  or your experiences to share and if you have any questions.  There is a comment box at the end of this blog page and we will be so happy to get back to you, to answer and to give any help/advice we can.

You might also like to take a look at these:

Disclosure:  Please note that some of the links in this blog post may be affiliate links meaning that, with no extra cost to you, we earn a small commission if you make a purchase. We recommend only products and companies we use.

SEO Tips For Bloggers

Best SEO Tips For Bloggers

SEO Tips For Bloggers

SEO (short for Search Engine Optimisation) is one of the most important part of building a blog, without an optimised page you will not feature in the search engines and as a result will not be found by those browsing the internet searching for information relative to your post content. 

So read on for some useful tips on how to create a search engine friendly blog post to maximise your chances of ranking higher in Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines.

Keyword Research

Keywords are the words, sentences or phrases that people type into the search engines to find the most relevant and useful results for something they are looking for. For example, the following is a keyword phrase search.

Search Engine Keywords

The results from this search will only show pages optimised for “best beaches in the world.

Build a list of keywords and use a selection of them in your blog posts. A nifty little tool is the Google Keyword Planner, this will help you compile the list of keywords but also gives you an indication of the most popular keyword searches, which can prove quite handy as it also tells you how competitive the keywords are (in other words how many other blogs/websites are trying to feature highly in the search engines for that particular keyword). It’s also a FREE tool which is always a bonus! To increase the number of keywords you use in your blog post remember to us Synonyms of each of your chosen keywords. Thesaurus has a handy Synonyms Checker to help you out with this. Make sure you have a good list before you start your blog post.

Using SERP Research For Your Blog Posts

SERP stands for “Search Engine Results Page” and using this research will help you see what your competition is like for keywords to see what the chances are of you ranking highly against those blog post and websites. The second reason for using this type of research is because Google Search, particularly, has starting to add rich snippets at the top of the results page. Here is an example:

Search Engine Results Page Research

Notice at the top search result is a Rich Snippet from one of the biggest and most relative websites for the search term I used. Also note that high on the search page are a list of other questions that users have asked. These two areas highlighted with the red box tells me I am fairly unlikely to rank above these results. It can be a useful little piece of research to help see what your competition is doing and how they are performing in the results page.

Using Keywords in Your Blog Post Title

One of the key elements of a blog post is the blog post title. Its the first thing searchers see on the search results page, the search engines use the title as one of the many factors in selecting the most relevant results for a search query. A well thought out Title adds great SEO value. Here’s an example:

Adding A Title To Your Blog

Make your title of interest to the user, often when your blog post is shared on social media the title will be displayed, so you want to ensure it stands out and says what the blog post is about so that it catches the eye of as many people as possible. The length of your title should be around 60 characters long.

Adding A Meta Description to Your Blog Post

The meta description is a snippet of text about your blog description that features on the search engine result page, letting people know what your blog post is about. Here’s an example:

Adding a Meta Description

The length of your meta description should be around 150 characters long.

Building Keywords Into Your Content

Now that you have a list of keywords, focus on adding them in to your blog posts. The key to this though is to use them sparingly as if you just randomly add them over and over in a blog post the search engines may see it as something called “keyword stuffing” and can penalise your blog. Create a few phrases that include your keywords, remembering to also use the synonyms of your keywords and include them within your blog post, but ensure that the sentences make sense.

A big tip here though – quality content of your blog post is key! Search engines are very smart, as they can detect and rank high quality blog posts that are more valuable to users. The other reason to make your blog post interesting and useful to readers is that they are much more likely to share a useful well written blog post to others and other bloggers are more likely to link to it.

Don’t Forget About Long Tail Keywords

When you have compiled your list of keywords and phrase, you will probably find that most of these are the most popular terms that other blogs and websites are also trying to rank highly for. To maximise the opportunity for visitors to find you in the search engines, its really worth including some Long Tail Keywords in your lists and introduce them into your blog posts.

So what are long tail Keywords? Well, lets give you an example, if a small selection of my main keywords are petsit, america, housesitting and usa. Then an example of a Long Tail Keyword might be professional carers for your dogs in California or experienced cat sitters in Los Angeles. These more detailed, specific search terms are less competitive (meaning less of the larger blogs will be trying to optimise for these phrases) which as a result will more likely enable you to feature on the first page of the search results.

Optimising Your Images

Although at first glance it may seem a bit tedious every time you add an image to have to optimise it, let me explain why this is an important SEO tip. Search engines are unable to read images (they can only read words) so are unable to understand if images are relevant to a search result. However if you optimise the image by adding a title and alt text to each image the search engines can then read them. This is important as it also brings additional traffic to your blog post through any image searches where your images will also feature if they have been correctly optimised. This is very simple to do, every time you upload an image to your blog before you Insert the Media, head over to the right hand side and you will see the Title and Alt Text boxes, pop a few words in them about the image, you can even make them the same words in each. Here’s an example:

Optimising Images For Blogs

Just make a point of adding An Image Title and Alt Text each time you upload an image and before long it will become normal practice.

Adding Tags To Your Blog

Using Tags on your blog will help you organise your blog and help users find their way around your blog more easily, but even more importantly will allow the search engines to locate more information about your blog posts content. You can add as many Tags as you like to a blog post and those tags should be words that are related to your blog post. To find the Tags open your blog post and scroll down on the right hand side until you see the Tags section and the box labelled “Add New Tag”.

Adding Tags To Your Blog Post

Optimise The URL Of Each Blog Post

You can further increase your search engine presence by ensuring that you have optimised your website links to make them more SEO friendly and also showing visitors to your blog what the post is all about. Here is an example of an optimised URL:

Example of an Optimised URL

You can see from the above URL that visitors can immediately see what the blog post is about. Make sure you try and keep the URL name short and simple. Here is where to change your URL:

Where to change your URL in WordPress

Linking Blog Post To Others You Have Written

A great way to get visitors to visit various posts through your Blog are to link relative blog posts to another within your content section. For instance you are reading this blog post about SEO, so you may be interested in learning about setting up a blog. You notice that I have linked another of my blogs in here to enable visitors to visit that page. If it is relevant to the blog you are writing then include a link to other posts visitors may be interested in.

Use an SEO Plugin For WordPress

As you can see from this post there are numerous things to consider and optimise to get your SEO perfect. A great plugin for WordPress used by and the most commonly used is Yoast SEO. This plugin will help you optimise every post on your blog and will also give you extra tips on how you can improve your search engine optimisation.

Network With Other Bloggers

I mentioned earlier that writing high quality and interesting content is key to ranking well in the search engines. Another big reason for ensuring your are writing well thought out articles is that you are more likely to get a “share” from some of the more influential bloggers out there and sometimes just one share or link from these massive blogs can really help your traffic levels and ranking.

Try To Feature Influencers In Your Blog Posts

Finding ways to introduce you and your blog to Influential bloggers is a great way to get your blog visited by a wider audience. Recommending them, interviewing them, linking to their posts are all ways for them to get to know about you and your blog. By featuring them you have a chance to get on their radar and are more likely that they will help you in return by sharing one of your blog posts.

Try Keep Your Old Blog Posts Up To Date

Quite often you will come across a really useful blog post but find that the information is out of date, this could be anything from SEO techniques, a great restaurant you recommended in a post that has since closed down, to a photo of a landscape in Spain changing or a hyperlink that no longer exists.

Tip: Keeping your old blog posts current will not only give the visitor a better experience but also help your page ranking by keeping your content more accurate and fresh.

Thank you for visiting our Blog, we would really appreciate your comments,  your thoughts on it,  or your experiences to share and if you have any questions.  There is a comment box at the end of this blog page and we will be so happy to get back to you, to answer and to give any help/advice we can.

You might also like to take a look at these:

Setting Up An Online Business

Setting Up An Online Business

Setting Up An Online Business

I’m always really interested in finding out how all of the “digital nomads” fund their travelling and I’ve found that most have a blog of some description and have been building it over a few years, but I’m yet to find anyone who has completely shared how they actually set up a blog, how long it took to generate cash from it and how much time it takes to keep it updated.  In my view and from experience blogs take a long time to set up, need lots of time spent on them to keep them current and have to be really informative to actually make much money from them.

Now this is a personal view and from someone with a very basic understanding of social media and web design but I would consider one of the best, quickest and if you’re lucky and do it right, easiest ways to earn a bit of extra cash while travelling is to set up an online business. Something you can take where ever you go as long as you can get an internet connection, easier said than done I hear you say!

Well, I’d be lying if I said it was easy, otherwise everyone would be doing it, but its achievable by absolutely any one who has a laptop, after all, I’ve done it and when I started had no experience of web design or the type of business I set up, so if I can do it anyone can! And honestly, our websites earn us less than my salary alone when I was a school teacher. But it took less than six months to set up and amazingly with a fair bit of budgeting and further development as we’ve gone along, it’s been enough to fund the last 10 years of winters in Spain, summers on the Black Sea Coast, 10 nights in New York, a 14 night road trip around the UK, 3 trips to Australia and our 2 and a half month backpacking adventure in Asia.

If you’re interested in becoming a Nomad then certainly consider starting an online business, they can be pretty easy to set up and with a bit of hard work and lots of luck it might just start to make some money …… so lets get started!

The First Step!

The key thing to setting up any online business is to choose a type of business.  I would suggest choosing something you are interested in or maybe even something you have experience of either through work or a hobby.  If you know something about the business already you will be strides ahead of me.  The online business that enabled us to started our journey, I set up in about 3 months from just a few evenings a week while I was still a school teacher and it was a commission based holiday rental website. Since then I’ve had a go at numerous other holiday rental websites, selling a learn to swim book and swimming products, an advertising site for tradesmen and through our pet sitting experiences we are now starting a pet orientated online business ……. some more successful than others!

The Global Petsitters

So get your thinking cap on and come up with that basic type of business.  Lets say you’ve thought of something now, but even if you haven’t then why not try and replicate one of our ideas, I’m going to use a holiday rental website as an example to show you how you can set an online business up from scratch and how income can be achieved.

If I still have your attention and your keen to read more, then lets go!

The Second Step

So now we have to set up a website, don’t worry, as it’s not as difficult as you might think.   We cover this in detail over at this blog post “Setting Up A Website“.

You’ll learn about:

How to set up your first website absolutely FREE!

Choosing a webname, what to think about, how to check if its available and actually buying your own dot com!

Setting Up A Website

So pop on over and take a look Setting Up A Website and come and meet me back here once you’ve had a good read through.

The Third Step

So now we need to build your website into a business that generates an income stream. We’ll be using a holiday rental website as an example, but the concept is pretty much the same for any business. 

Firstly, the easiest way to start building a selection of items/products or in our case holiday rentals to sell through a website is by using affiliate programmes. Simply put an Affiliate Programme is set up by the company selling the product, they provide you with a website link with a special piece of code, you put this link on your website and if anyone clicks on the link and buys a product directly with the company, the company can tell the lead has come from your website and gives you a commission for sending them a sale. 

The beauty of affiliate programmes are that once the links are placed on your website, when someone visits your site and clicks on a link, everything else becomes automated as they go through to the businesses shop, product or in our case the rental property. So in effect your website is open for business 24 hours a day and could in theory generate income even when you are a sleep! In reality, however, its not quite as easy as that, but with a little bit of extra work and marketing it really is a possibility. 

So lets give it a go and see whether you can make some money from your website. Setting up affiliate accounts is FREE and using companies links are all FREE to do. Lets start by setting one up with one of the agencies we use called AWIN.Go to and then click on the SIGN UP button in the top right hand corner or alternatively click here to go directly to the sign up page. Follow the instructions to set up your account.

Affiliate Account Set Up

Make sure you make a note of your login details somewhere safe!

Now you can start to apply for some suitable business with products that you can list on your website. Make sure you’re logged in, then to find all the companies click the DASHBOARD link at the top left hand side of the page. Then hover over  the ADVERTISERS button at the top of the page and select JOIN PROGRAMMES.

Joining Affiliate Programmes

Now you can search different business sectors on the left hand side, you will see a list of advertiser (that’s what they call the business) in the Not Joined area, if you want to find out more about the advertiser (what they sell, commission info etc) then click on the magnifying glass on the right hand screen at the end of the advertisers details.

Find New Affiliates

So if you select Toffs Ltd as an example and click on the magnifying glass of that advertiser, you will see all of the companies information. Should you wish to join this advertiser and sell their products on your website, click on the JOIN PROGRAMME link.

There are a host of affiliate programmes available to join to maximise the companies you can promote. Here are a few more:

Commission Junction  ¦  Affiliate Future ¦  Click Booth ¦  Webgains ¦  Click Bank ¦  Trade Doubler

The Fourth Step

Now start to add each companies link on to you website. Make sure you wait until you have been accepted as an affiliate by the company, you will receive an email with confirmation by Awin when each advertiser accepts you. Now you can get creative with building your website. Here are a couple of examples to get you thinking about what might work for your business idea.

Example 1

You may want to show case your products in a simple shop format as the website below has done.

Dogs My World

I set this website up in just a few hours to give you an example of a very simple shop created using affiliate programme links to sell products online.

Simply done, you can see that each product has a unique link which lets the company know that anyone who clicks on the link on my page and buys the product through my website ensures I receive a commission from the sale.

Website With Affiliate Link

Example 2

You may want to show case your holiday rentals in a online travel brochure format as the website below has done.

HolidaytoRent Website

I set this website up which gives you an example of a very simple holiday rental website created using affiliate programme links to sell products online.

Simply done, you can see that each unique link lets the company know that anyone who clicks on a link on my page and buys the product through my website ensures I receive a commission from the sale.

Holiday to Rent Website

I hope you get the idea and good luck with building an online business!

Thank you for visiting our Blog, we would really appreciate your comments,  your thoughts on it,  or your experiences to share and if you have any questions.  There is a comment box at the end of this blog page and we will be so happy to get back to you, to answer and to give any help/advice we can.

You might also like to read these:

Disclosure:  Please note that some of the links in this blog post may be affiliate links meaning that, with no extra cost to you, we earn a small commission if you make a purchase. We recommend only products and companies we use.