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Why (and why not) host your blog on its own domain?

  • Category : Web Hosting
  • Posted on : Dec 04, 2013
  • Views : 134
  • By : Zane P.

many bloggers had the same question when they first started blogging: Where should I host my blog? Is hosting my blog on a free platform like WordPress and Blogspot better; or should I operate my blog on its individual domain name and hosting?

Yes, it’s normal that bloggers often face dilemma when it comes to hosting. While different bloggers have different answers for the question; one can’t deny that not every blog needs to be hosted on its own hosting with a unique domain name. As a matter of fact, there are tons of successful blogs do not run on its own hosting – SethGodin.typepad.com, BrandAutopsy.typepad.com, and PhotoshopDisasters.blogspot.com for example are some of the typical example.

Comparing blogs on third-party platform and blogs with own domains

When deciding which way to go with, these are the major five factors that should be considered.

Operating cost

The best part of operating a blog on a free platform is, well, FREE. Hosting blogs on a third party platform like WordPress or Blogspot is totally free of charge; a blog with its own domain is otherwise. Web hosting fees and domain renewal cost are the basic expenditures for blog with its own domain.

Flexibility

Free things often come with a catch-22. In our case, major disadvantage behind a free blog is the flexibility. For example, you have zero controls on the cgi-bin or .htaccess file of a WordPress blog, which means there is huge level of limitations in term of blog’s outlook and functionality designs.

Blog Maintenance

Are you good with computers? Or, are you willing to learn further in website hosting? Do you have enough free time for your blog?

Think twice about hosting a blog yourself if the answer is ‘no’. Hosting a blog on its own domain simply means more maintenance tasks. PHP and database configuration, blog software installation, server side configuration (like robots.txt and .htaccess) – these are the basics for any blogs that run on its own domain/hosting.

Branding

Generally speaking, a blog with its own domain has more advantages when it comes to branding and marketing. A free blog’s long URL (like myfirstblog.wordpress.com) is ugly and hard to remember; plus a free blog often project a part-timer or amateur image online.

Yes we can’t deny that Seth’s and John’s blogs on TypePad are extremely successful but let’s not forget that these two clever minds are well known “brands” before they started their blogs.

Monetizing

Monetizing your blog might not be a big issue here unless you are looking forward to sell your blog in future. Most individual bloggers make money via selling advertisement space (banners or text links) and writing reviews – which are available for both ways of blogging.

Is free blog for you, or other wise?

Now the question is: Where should you run your blog?

Summing up factors listed above, there are a few scenarios when you should go with a free blog instead of its own domain. Non-techies, hobbyists, and students with limited time or budget are recommended to go with free blogging. There are plenty of good free blogging platform around and here are a quick list of some.

XangaBravenet
MultiplyYahoo 360
BlogsterAOL Blogs
BloggerAtom 5
Word PressBlog

On the other hand, if you need a blog with better flexibility and branding potential, then a blog with its own domain/hosting is for you.

Do note that hosting nowadays is much cheaper than before. Most wonderful hosting services (Host SEO for example) – it’s so cheap that most webmasters own more than just one hosting account. Remember, a free blog on Blogspot or WordPress is like house renting – your blog simply borrows the hosting space owned by other bigger websites; while blogs with own domain is like properties in real world. why don’t take up the full ownership of your blog?

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