First things first, hi friend! I am going to give you my honest opinion of what worked for me. I use my own personal experiences for examples. Learn from my mistakes. I want to help you get your blog set up faster than I did!
This post contains affiliate links. I included the links to show you where I started my blog. I do receive commission for folks that sign up to Bluehost from my links. I only include links if I truly love the product. With all of my affiliates- I reach out to the companies I trust. I have not been approached by any company, I seek out to share what I believe works well and share it with others.
The idea of a blog is beautiful, bliss really. Here is the thing- you probably have gotten “analysis paralysis” though by now. What is “analysis paralysis”? It is when you have debated and analyzed something for so long, that you just can’t move forward now!
Don’t worry you are not the only one. In fact that was me not too long ago. I was reading so many conflicting things about blogs. It seemed like everyone was using something different. Some people used free sites, Bluehost, Siteground, Blogger and so many others!
I finally had done enough research. I was nervous. Something about creating a website still made me feel uneasy. I was definitely on board with the creative part of the blog…but the technical side, creating ads, customizing, and codes were not something I had really done before. This might be where you are right now. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to get my site up and running because I did not know too much about building websites. So there I was, so nervous about almost every aspect. I was actually sweating. Lol. Gross…but you should know this was NOT a decision I made lightly.
I tried a free website off of Weebly. It was okay. It was free and I wanted to keep costs as low as possible. Free = Lowest cost possible. Here is where it declines. If you use a free site, you are going to get stuck with some weird web address. For example with Weebly it would look something like: www.weirdwebsite.weebly.com. Let’s be realistic. How many people do you really think are going to remember that? Not too many unfortunately. You wouldn’t build a weak foundation for your house, so don’t build a weak foundation for your blog.
Please remember what I failed to remember. When you are creating a blog you are creating a BRAND. Slapping someone else’s website name in your web address is going to set you back big time. All that really happens when you settle for the free sites is you promote their website by showing off your web address with your name in it. That is the big catch that a lot of folks miss. That is how they are able to keep giving away the freebie sites. You are their free advertiser.
Let’s think together for a second. When is the last time you saw a big blog, that is monetized that uses anything but a .com in their web address? I honestly cannot think of one. To me when I visit a blog site that is a .com I right away recognize it with a professional blog business. Maybe you do too? The best part out of all of this? You can easily set up, create, and have your own web address for a few dollars a month. A few dollars these days is probably about the average cost of a large coffee at your local coffee shop.
How do you get just a “.com” domain name? (Domain name + web address is basically the same thing.) For example my web address is www.sincerelyjacqueline.com. No extra nonsense to get in the way. How did I get just the .com? I went to the best web host I could find. I researched for a long time. I read so many reviews, comments, and blogs on different hosts. Bluehost was the answer for me.
What is a web host? It is basically a business/service that sells/rents to you space on the internet for your website.
If you just purchase a domain name you are doing all of the technical building for a website. Here is my rule of thumb I went by. Since I did not go to college for building websites and coding, I probably would be better off using a program to help me set up my website. All of the free sites I believe use some sort of program that help you set up your websites as well. I know Weebly did this for sure.
Out of all of the reviews I kept seeing the same web hosting name come up again and again. Bluehost. At first I was a little nervous but it quickly subsided. I had read that with Bluehost you are self hosted and you get the benefits of having access to using WordPress. (WordPress is free through Bluehost, WordPress is a plug in program that helps you customize your website.)
I finally came to my senses and invested the few dollars a month into my new blog. I finally signed up through Bluehost. (I still believe that even now it was so worth it!) That is how this blog was born. I had to learn the hard way. I spent so much time investing into the free website I had. All of that time I could have been putting into this blog. You know what though? That is okay. I learned a lot. I have information that others can benefit from. I really believe:
“Everything happens for a reason.”
I learned a lot of ways of how not to start a blog. Lol.
So like I said I chose Bluehost. I signed up. This takes minutes. How many minutes? It depends on how fast you type your name and information to be honest. It is fast. I have spent more time filling out a form for a free printable coupon than I did signing up for Bluehost.
The first thing I did was install the WordPress plug in. The WordPress “dashboard” is where you will be all the time. This gives you access to your site to make changes, customize and create content. It is user friendly. If you have any issues or questions of how to put something on your website you can do 1 of 2 things. You can call Bluehost directly or you can start an online chat. Sometimes I really do not feel like being tied to the phone. I love the online chat feature.
Everything was and always has been so easy with Bluehost. I can chat online with a Bluehost representative for help 24/7. I can call anytime. I was never stuck with Bluehost. They offer a money back guarantee for 30 days. Sounds like a win-win to me!
The paid website wins every time for me. Maybe for you it is different. I made money my first month blogging with my paid hosted website! I did work really hard. I put in a lot of hours after the kids went to bed. Click here to start your website! You might be the next big thing! You won’t know until you try. There are not any guarantees in life for anything. That doesn’t mean that you should miss out on the experiences though. 🙂
- My first month blogging income report! Hint, hint I made money!
- Why YOU should STOP procrastinating and start your BLOG!
- 7 Things you throw away that sell on eBay right now!
See this post and many other great posts on Homesteading with Heart!