Hosting is a crucial factor in ranking. If you use cheap and low quality hosting, then you may face tough to rank your site.
I recommend SiteGround to New bloggers because of their speed and support. Highly Recommended!
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GeneratePress is one of the most popular WordPress themes, and I use it on Blogginwing.com also. If you want to customize your website to the next level, I recommend to go with GeneratePress .This is one of the most light-weight and SEO-friendly theme.