Running a blog for your gym is one of the best ways to get new clients and communicate with your current clientele. You can sell products, teach members techniques, and post contact and location information through a gym blog. The best way to build a blog for your gym is to start with a powerful Content Management System (CMS) like WordPress. Follow these steps to learn how to install and use WordPress or another CMS to build a professional blog for your gym.
Get Web Hosting for a Gym Blog
Every blog and website on the web is hosted on a web server, this allows the public to download and interact with your content. Web hosting companies provider server access to site and blog owners for a small fee, which is often billed monthly. There are several forms of hosting that work well for gym blogs including shared hosting and VPS hosting.
If you’re on a tight budget, then shared web hosting may be your best option. It can usually be obtained for less than $10 per month. Shared hosting allows you to purchase space on a web server next to other websites to collectively utilize the server’s resources.
The direct alternative to this option is “dedicated hosting,” wherein a website owner leases an entire physical server for themselves. Most gym blogs won’t require the resources involved in a dedicated server system, and such systems can cost upwards of $100 per month.
To get the best of both worlds, you can opt for Virtual Private Server hosting for your blog. With a VPS, you will have a dedicated amount of resources for your gym blog, which are virtually compartmentalized from other users on a physical machine. This allows you the predictability and security of a dedicated server, at a fraction of the cost.
With shared or VPS hosting providers, you can often find WordPress hosting plans. These plans are pre-optimized for the CMS, allowing you to install WordPress in a single click. WordPress hosting plans also come with special configurations to make maintaining your blog easier, and sometimes even offer SEO benefits.
Choose and Installing a CMS for Your Gym Blog
After finding the right hosting package for your gym’s new blog, you’ll want to install the CMS of your choosing. WordPress is generally thought to have the lowest learning curve, and is a great choice if this is your first professional blog. Most blogs on the web rely on the WordPress CMS. Drupal and Joomla are two other excellent options. All three of the systems mentioned here are free and work similarly.
If you’ve opted for CMS-specific hosting, simply use the one-click installer option in your host’s control panel to install WordPress or another CMS. For those that get standard hosting, you’ll need to download the CMS’s installation file and upload it manually through your file manager.
This process is identical to uploading and downloading files on a local computer, but double check that you upload to the correct root or parent directory using the file manager browsing options. You may need to decompress the installation file after uploading it if you’re installing your CMS manually.
Finding Themes for Gym and Fitness Blogs
Once you’ve chosen and installed your CMS, you’ll need to find a theme to serve as the structure of your blog. You can find free themes on the WordPress Themes panel in your administrator dashboard, or you can browse for premium themes at third-party developer websites like Envato Market.
Search for themes that will best suit your blog by entering keywords like “fitness” and “Gym.” You can also browse for themes, or organize themes by whether or not they have specific features. Most gym blogs are compatible with responsive themes, so be sure to include this in your search criteria if mobile traffic is important to you. Responsive themes allow your content to reshape to conform to mobile screen sizes.
Install your theme using the Install and Activate buttons in WordPress, or by uploading the theme directly through your administrator dashboard in Drupal. The process of installing a theme in Joomla is just about the same, except themes are usually called “Templates” on this CMS.
Adding Logos, Menus, and Content to Your Gym’s Blog
Change the logo and title of your new blog using the theme options on your WordPress administrator panel. You can enter any text or image you’d like to instantly change the frontend of your blog. It’s a good idea to keep logos small in file size, and use scalable vector images with transparent backgrounds wherever possible.
You can add a menu in WordPress by going to the Menus option on the left-hand panel of your administrator dashboard’s homepage. The default menu will load on first-click, and it can be edited or replaced by a new menu if you’d like. Place the anchor pages of your blog that you want to link to from each page including your homepage in the menu you create or edit.
Add any images or content you want to appear on your blog’s frontend by editing the Home page of the blog. Depending on your theme, you may be able to swap currently existing images for your own, or you may need to upload and place new media using the intuitive WordPress Gutenberg editor.
Posting Articles to Your New Gym Blog
Now that you’ve got the frame of your blog completed, it’s time to add the bulk of your content. You can easily add blog posts and articles using the Posts option in your administrator dashboard in WordPress. This option is akin to the Articles menu option in Joomla.
Under “Posts,” click “Add New” and create a title for your first new blog post. You can use this post to introduce your gym’s branding, employees, mission, or any other fitness related materials you’d like to show visitors. Type your blog post in the default Gutenberg editor and save your work before hitting the “Publish” button at the top of the post editor page. Repeat this part of the process to publish as many blog posts as you’d like to display.
Adding a blog to your gym business can help new users find your company online, or help you connect with current members. You can add photos of your gym or stock photos of relevant fitness items and settings to liven your gym blog and enhance your blog posts. To make building and maintaining the blog easier, get web hosting that advertises that it works well for your specific CMS.