Before we get to the steps on how to create a blog in Joomla, lets learn something about blogging itself. Blogging is a way of expressing our thoughts regularly on something that we’re passionate about in writing and online.
The topic that you usually write about or centers around is called the niche. Currently, there are millions of live blogs on various niches.
Whether you run a personal, corporate or an e-commerce website, blogging is a great tool to reach wider audiences. With proper SEO strategies, blogging can help you bring more traffic to your website and even help your site rank higher than your competitors on Search Engines.
No matter what type of a website you want to create, Joomla has it covered, including blogging. This is where the age-old debate of whether Joomla is a good Content Management System to create a blog comes in. Rest assured, with the right approach and tools, Joomla is at par with any blogging software.
Moreover, Joomla has the advantage of ‘extensibility’. There are hundreds and thousands of Joomla extensions that you can use for adding functionalities to your blog and website. For example, you can add the SEO and social media extensions to enhance your blog further. You can also easily expand your website to accommodate a forum or even sell products there and these are just a couple of examples.
To create a blog in Joomla, you can either use Joomla itself or one of its blog extensions. For this tutorial we will focus on creating the blog using the built-in functions within Joomla itself.
Let us assume that you already have a working Joomla website and that you’re trying to add a blog section to it as illustrated below. If you do not have a website yet, you can learn how to create a Joomla website here.
Prior to following the steps below, it helps if you already have an idea about what your blog should contain and its layout. So that you can slowly working towards it using the built-in options and customizing it when necessary.
How to create a blog in Joomla
- Login to the Administrator area.
- Navigate to Content > Categories > Add New Category. Enter the title of the category, for example Blog. You can also add the category description and images if that’s necessary. Once you’re done click Save and Close.
- Navigate to Menu > Main Menu > Add New Menu Item. This depends on which menu you want to add the blog to. For this tutorial we’re adding it to the main menu but the steps are similar for all the menus.
- Enter the Menu Title i-e, Blog and under the Menu Item Type select Article > Category Blog.
- Below the Menu Item Type, choose the category that you have just created and then click Save and Close.
With that you have the Blog menu and the category ready. All you have to do now is to create articles and configure the settings for your Blog.
Create articles for your blog:
- Navigate to Content > Articles > Add new Article.
- Give your article a title and select the Blog category or any of its sub-categories (if you have already created some) under which you want the article to appear.
- Write your article and try to add supplementary images. It is a good practice to add a ‘Read More’ after the first paragraph of each article. Otherwise, the whole article will appear under the category view. Also try to add the description for images.
- Once you’re done, make sure the Status is set to Published and then click Save and Close.
Now if you visit the blog front-end, you’ll find the default blog layout and the article meta informations. You may or may not be satisfied with the default settings but it can all be re-configured easily from the back-end.
This is an illustration of my blog default layout right after publishing the first article.
I’m not quite satisfied with the default view and would like to make some changes such as:
- Removing the sub-heading and the category title from the category view.
- Add more meta informations to the article such as its publishing date both in the category and article view.
- Add breadcrumbs to the newly created Blog menu.
To work around these issues I need to:
- Navigate to Menus > Main Menu > Blog > Page Display and set ‘Show Page Heading’ to No and also set the Category Title to ‘Hide’.
- For the article meta informations, I need to navigate to Content > Articles > Options and set the ‘Show Publish Date’ and ‘Category Tile’ to yes.
- As for the breadcrumbs, navigate to Extensions > Modules > Breadcrumbs and assign the module to the Blog menu.
After making the changes the article view now looks something like this.
The reason I’ve included all these steps in this guide is to highlight the menus on the back-end from where you can make the changes to the default blog settings. Having said that, try to explore more of the settings under the Blog menu as well the article options. And that is how we create a blog in Joomla without using any blog extensions.