How to Start a Blog?

Nowadays, almost everyone has a blog. Blogging has been going on for years, and some people might say that blogs are outdated since the majority of people navigate more towards social media platforms like Facebook, Youtube, and Instagram. But I think otherwise. Blog contents are full of helpful and reliable information since most bloggers are experts or have experience in their specific niches.

Here’s how to start a blog:

  1. Choose your niche
    Choose a niche that you are passionate about. Don’t be afraid to narrow down to specific niches. This way, you can quickly write and create blog posts relating to your topic. Not only that, but you will also reach specific audiences for your blog.  For example, your niche is about mental health specifically about anxiety, so you will be tackling about dealing, overcoming anxiety, etc.
  2. Maintain a consistent schedule of your posts.
    No one is going to follow your blog if it is inconsistent, like uploading at a different time and date. Having a consistent schedule, let’s say you will post your articles every Wednesday night, makes the people would want to check out your blog every Wednesday night. This way, you can build trust and rapport with your audience. 

    Consistent postings will boost your SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Google loves consistency. You can easily rank at the top when people search for specific keywords relating to your blog posts. SEO is a bit of a complicated topic. Still, there are tons of learning materials available online, and later on, you can improve in optimizing your SEO for better opportunities for your blog.
  3. Make a website.
    The best blogging platform is WordPress. There are also alternative blogging platforms you can try such as Squarespace, Blogspot, and many more. Personally, I would prefer using WordPress because WordPress has earned its SEO benefits from Google, giving you more opportunities for monetizing your blog. However, WordPress is a bit of a complicated platform to use, but there are many tutorials available online where you can learn from, or you can opt to hire a WordPress developer if it’s too hard for you. 
  4. Monetizing your blog by using affiliate links.
    One way to earn from your blog is by hooking up your blog with affiliates. Setting up with affiliates is like advertising someone’s product. For example, your recent article is about “Ways on How to Cope up with Insomnia,” in your blog post, you included a particular ointment that you got from Amazon and embedded the link to your blog post. If that article reaches a thousand views and followers, then you can rank up on Google and, at the same time, earn from affiliates that will reach out to you. To get more on affiliate marketing, you can learn this yourself or hire a marketing specialist.
  5. Keep updated.
    You have to keep yourself updated on what’s new and trendy on social media to avoid having an outdated blog. For example, the current trend is all about the global pandemic, and luckily, as a mental health blogger, your articles will have a better chance of ranking up on Google and have more traffic for your blog. In a global pandemic situation, everyone needs to be mentally healthy, so you are at an advantage. 

    Blogging is a product of passion, a passion that could lead you to income. However, blogging doesn’t mean it is exclusive only for earning. Instead, think of blogging as an expression of one’s character and a platform where people share their knowledge with others. You want to start a blog, right? Then take action now! You might become a successful blogger someday!

The need for WordPress Security

WordPress site owners would just leave site security on the least priorities on their checklist.  The common things they are going for are an affordable host, an appealing design, SEO, promotion, and custom development.  They would not prioritize the security of their site, sadly according to an article from, WordPress accounted for 90 percent of all hacked CMS sites in 2018.  Two-thirds of them were hacked due to a backdoor from an outdated plugin or a known vulnerability.

(image from Sucuri)

Remember a website is a digital asset; any disruption would result in loss of lead, conversion, and sale.  That means a loss of revenue, imagine if a site that earns an average of $100 per day, a disruption of five days would result in a loss of $500, the same scenario on a site that was dropped off on search engine rankings.   Google Ad would not permit adding websites if their algorithm detected a possible malware infection.   In the worst scenario, Chrome would not allow the viewing of the site and would make a bad impression on customers.   Expensive Design, SEO, Social Marketing, Sales Funnel, or landing pages would not be of help once a WordPress website is hit by malware.  So it’s better to be protected than sorry.

Filezilla on Pantheon

FileZilla is an FTP client that allows you to upload and import files to and from the Pantheon server. This app allows you to copy several files at the same time. It is a cross-platform software that is available on Windows, Mac OS, and Linux.

This article will walk you through the steps of downloading and uploading your WordPress or Drupal site on Pantheon.

Download Filezilla

If you don’t already have FileZilla installed, grab the most recent update and install it on your computer.

Start Filezilla

Start FileZilla by looking for the application on the start menu or search bar on Windows, on the applications folder on Mac OS, and search for Ubuntu. Keep in mind that Pantheon uses a non-standard port for SFTP, and the protocol must be SFTP rather than FTP.

Create a New Site

Click the Site Manager Icon, that would be the Icon under the File menu.

This would prompt the Site Manager window that would allow a new connection to be made on Filezilla.

Click the New Site button and put details from the Site Dashboard Connection Info from Pantheon. Use the password that is being used on Pantheon User Dashboard. Make sure the Protocol is in SFTP and is using port 2222.

Select to accept the server’s host key for the current session so it is stored in the cache. This will allow you to connect to the server and manage your files for the current session.

To get to the site’s root simply navigate to the code folder and you will be able to continue managing your files as normal.

Block IP Addresses in WordPress

There are several reasons that might need to block an IP address from accessing the site. I’ve categorized the reasons in no particular order:

  • Unnecessary traffic
  • Spam
  • Brute Force Attack
  • DDoS Attack

Unnecessary traffic

Usually, this is traffic generated by bots crawling the site, they might be good or bad bots. A bot is considered good when it would adhere or follow what’s on the robots.txt file, the other one would just ignore the contents. There are also some email harvesters, content scrapers, and web extractors. This adds bandwidth and sometimes hinders the loading of the site.


Spam is unwanted messages, usually on form submissions like contact forms, registration pages, and comment pages. They sometimes become annoying since the query does not come from legitimate users or customers. On server access logs most of them come with a single IP.

Brute Force Attack

A brute force attack is a series of login attempts trying to guess the password. There are many methods of doing this, one is doing all the combinations to log in, another is using a dictionary of known weak passwords. Access to the wp-admin dashboard is really plenty on server access logs.

DDoS Attack

DDoS is an acronym for Distributed Denial of Service. The DDoS attack utilizes several IP addresses that send multiple requests with the aim to exceed the bandwidth and limit access to a website.

Blocking an IP using a plugin

The most sophisticated plugin for securing a WordPress site is Wordfence. Wordfence features a built-from-the-ground-up endpoint firewall and malware scanner to secure WordPress. Wordfence gets the latest firewall rules, malware signatures, and malicious IP addresses from its Threat Defense Feed, so it can keep the website secure. Wordfence is the most robust WordPress protection system today, with 2FA and a suite of additional tools.

Here are other plugins worth considering in blocking IP:

Blocking an IP in Server Configuration

On Apache servers, this can be done by adding Deny keyword on .htaccess

# Block Single IP
Deny from

# Block Entire Subnet
Deny from 192.168

# Block using CIDR
Deny from

On Nginx servers, add access.conf file on Nginx configuration folder.

location / {

After adding, reload the configuration or restart Nginx.

Blocking an IP by using PHP

Use a PHP snippet to block IP, the best way to put the code on wp-config.php, the server would deny the IP before bootstrapping the core, plugins, and themes.

if ($_SERVER['REMOTE_ADDR'] == '') {
  header('HTTP/1.0 403 Forbidden');

Wrapping UP

I think the best method to use is the server configuration and PHP code inclusion. Even if the site is experiencing a DDoS attack, the Server and PHP code can be added instantly.

Starting with PHP

Just bump around recently with some students from a University nearby our home, though it is not yet part of their curriculum they are more than interested in the language. So I am going to write some simple tutorials regarding the language. The last time, I taught or mentor was very long ago, so this would be an exciting journey for me.

When PHP not yet existed?

If my memory serves me right, people do have the internet by 1995, most of the sites use CGI (Common Gateway Interface). If you need to fetch data from a database server, you would need to use the C language or Perl script. It’s a little bit hard to debug or develop since the need to spit out the information either to compile if it’s on C if it’s on Perl not many server log messages to pinpoint where the error is. You would see some servers have the cgi-bin folder that uses to house scripts that will interact with a Web browser. I think it has still today especially for most cPanel hosts.

Here comes PHP

PHP was written by Rasmus Lerdorf in C language. It was written in C because it was the language Rasmus was most comfortable with at that time. Unlike using CGI (Common Gateway Interface) the approach was to embed it with HTML, mostly just specifying with the file extension php. Basically, a scripting language that is executed on the server.

<!DOCTYPE html>
echo 'Hello world';

The basic syntax of PHP is very similar to that of Perl, and both share several syntactic features with C. Whitespace is ignored in code, statements are ended with semicolons, and curly braces group together several statements into a single block. The name of the function is accompanied by the actual arguments, which are enclosed in parentheses and separated by commas.

<?php // all code starts with this tag 

// single statement
$variable = "Value of variable"; 

// sample function
function sample($argument, $argument2) {


// all code end with this tag

The best way to learn a language is by using it. We would try to install PHP on a server or on a local development machine.