I don't know how any of it works. What's right and what's wrong or even the basics of a relationship or how you pursue one or do anything. You can't ask out a random girl because that's weird. You have to build up a friendship and then try and that leads to being friend zoned, which isn't terrible, but I'd like to be in a relationship for once. So do you tell the girl that you're not sure how any of it works so she doesn't think you're like weird or something?
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You start out saying "idk how any of this works/what to do" then follow up with you can't do this and you have to do this in order to get that etc... Let's go back to the part where you say you dont know what to do and go from there because what you are doing is not working and not the way to do it..
First of all you can, and should ask out random girls. It is only weird because you think it is weird. Let that belief go and allow room for a new one.. Asking out random women will already get you 1 step ahead of your prior strategy of "friends first" (which is a common mistake.) When you ask out random women, you are immediately setting the precedence that you are not interested in being "friends." Which is what you want to do, and the opposite of what you are doing.
Next, you need to drop the attitude that you need to come up with the "right answers" and have the "right things" to say. By putting this pressure on yourself, you subject yourself to the "fear of loss" factor. Which does nothing but make you fumble, nervous and just fuck shit up. It's useless.
Furthermore, just the fact that you are 18-24 alone makes it perfectly acceptable/normal not to have had a relationship. And judging by the inexperience I sense here due to your question my guess would be you are between 18-20 (I could be wrong) which makes it even MORE acceptable to not have had a relationship. So don't even sweat that.
Your inexperience comes from lack of experience. And no one is born with experience. So it's not like you are some sort of freak show here.
Stop worrying, and start doing. When you do this, you will learn. You will learn that you dictated the beliefs you hold in your head right now, and you will learn that you can use that same power to change those beliefs to ones that will serve you better. Sounds simple, right? It is.
Do work my friend, you got this. May the force be with you.2