A question that many website owners, bloggers, business owners, and organizations ask is “Should my blog be hosted?” Once you have decided that this is a good idea, it becomes the question of how to host your website.
Although it can seem daunting initially, it is much easier than other options. You can disable any social media channel, such as a TikTok or YouTube channel, or Instagram channel, at any time.
You don’t have social media.
It makes sense to host your website right from the beginning. Let’s now discuss the steps needed to get started.
Step 1 – Determine your hosting budget
You will need a web host to host your website. The first step in determining your budget for web hosting is to determine your budget. Prices per month can vary from $1 to thousands. You can usually start with a lower price if you’re just starting out or creating your first website.
Hosted blogs (Blogger, WordPress.com etc.) are a great way to share your thoughts. It’s like buying a condo. Everything within your walls is yours. You share ownership of the structure as well as the common area. Without permission, you can’t add an umbrella or create a garden.
A self-hosted blog works in the same way as owning your own house. Everything is yours to control. You can do anything you want. Your only limitations are your budget, property, and your expertise.
It is difficult to value control if you don’t have the ability. I am often approached by clients and readers to help them transfer or move their blog to a self hosted setup.
You have complete control over your blog’s operation, including what it does and how it functions. Because the platform does not have an export tool, your data isn’t locked up. You are free to do what you like.
Step 2: Choose a Hosting Type
There are many types of hosting available. These are the most popular types:
- Shared Hosting (also known as Web Hosting)
- WordPress Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Cloud Hosting
- Hosting dedicated to your needs
Let me explain each one.
This is the most popular type of hosting, and it’s where you will start. You can think of shared hosting as renting an apartment. You share a server (server) with other tenants (websites).
Shared hosting offers a more efficient way to use a server. You only pay a few dollars a month for these savings. It’s shared. It’s like an apartment complex where one neighbor can ruin the experience for others.
You can read more about shared hosting in my What is article.
Almost every web hosting company provides shared hosting. The question is then, who are the best web hosting companies ? I rate, compare, and rank the available companies.
WordPress (Content Management System) is the most widely used CMS. WordPress is easy to use to create a website. It’s not surprising that WordPress hosting has been created by hosting companies to serve this specific audience.
However, it is possible to host WordPress from shared hosting companies. Sometimes, shared hosting providers have the exact same areas for WordPress hosting. This might not be enough to distinguish the two.
A common question I receive is “WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting – What is the Difference?
There is WordPress hosting, where the company creates WordPress plans or hosts a WordPress site. If you are looking for a company to host a popular website, these are the ones you should choose.
It’s difficult to find the best WordPress Hosting, just like with shared hosting. The best choice is determined by your needs.
You don’t have the resources to support shared hosting, as I said. You share a server with other people. This may seem fine at first, but it can be costly.
As soon as your website generates revenue, you will need more resources. However, this does not mean that other websites should be hindering the quality of your service.
Here is where Virtual Private Servers (VPS) come in. It sounds exactly as its name suggests.
When I started web hosting, the only option was dedicated servers. This meant that one machine could only host one website. It isn’t very efficient. The result was shared hosting, which is the worst form of hosting.
VPS technology was created to create a middle ground. It allows you to split up your physical server into smaller virtual machines. Each VPS has a certain amount of CPU, memory and disk storage. If there are multiple VPSs on the same machine, no one else can access those resources.
This allowed for the best of both worlds when it came to hosting: better resource allocation which in turn means lower costs and isolation of resources.
Customers today prefer a VPS to a dedicated server in a hosting environment.
Hosting dedicated to your needs
Dedicated hosting offers the best security and is the best choice. No one else has access to the same hardware as your website, unlike shared hosting or VPS.
Step 3: Choose Your Hosting Company
Self-hosting allows you to create any feature you like. One example: A client wanted a slider to show his portfolio photos before and after.
His blog was self-hosted so I could install the plugin and then implement the feature. I might not have been capable of implementing that feature if he was on a hosted platform.
Self-hosting your blog allows you to control and isolate costs according to what you use and not need. Website costs are almost always lower than hosted platforms.
Most hosted platforms bundle several services into a single subscription. Here’s an example: WordPress.com, and Wix pricing their plans each for a single website.
Self-hosting allows you to pay for web hosting for one company and use free software such as WordPress. Then, you can only purchase add-ons or use the free version. This is an example pricing for WordPress hosting from Bluehost.
It can make a huge difference to have a website that is not branded. However, costs can be significantly reduced if you have multiple blogs.
Hosted platforms require a separate subscription for each website.
Self-hosting allows you to use the same plan for multiple sites. Hosting plans allow you to host multiple websites at the same time. InMotion allows me to run 12 websites using a single plan.
Many themes and plugins can be used in multiple ways. A premium StudioPress theme I own has been used on 5 websites and 3 clients websites. All from a $49 one-time purchase.
You can choose exactly the services you need for your blog/website by self-hosting it. There are many features to choose from, so you don’t have to use them all.
This website has a –
- Namecheap – Domain Name
- Hosting at InMotion Hosting
- StudioPress template
- JetPack offers plugins
Based on my clients’ needs, I have created a customized setup for them. My other smaller sites have their own setup.
Self-hosting allows you to choose the website software you prefer over what comes with your subscription. You can also *change* your selections if you wish.
The Web is constantly changing. A few years back, everyone wanted Google+ share buttons. Everybody needs TikTok embeds.
RSS feeds were once huge. API integrations are now the norm.
You can upgrade your blog whenever you like by having it hosted on your own server. Hosted platforms are able to track your progress.
I worry about the future of their work when I see them blogging on Medium, Substack, or Tumblr.
You will need help at some point during the life of any blog. You might need help with design, or development . In either case, you will need a contractor.
You can choose your own contractors when your blog is self-hosted. You can make your pool of talent more extensive by hiring based on skills, not a platform. You can also use gig platforms such as Fiverr or UpWork.
You can also be more flexible than a hosted platform because you have root access.
Although it might seem odd to consider your blog an asset, it is. It can increase or decrease the value of your website/business.
Even if your blog isn’t part of a business website, it’s still valuable to consider it an asset that you can invest in and store value.
Many institutions started content efforts as goodwill or an internal effort. These efforts became a core part of the institution’s mission.
Like a house vs. a condo, an asset that is free and clear and unencumbered will be more valuable than one with minor restrictions.
Blogs that are self-hosted will be clear and free of encumbrance. However, blogs hosted on other platforms might have restrictions. This issue is a list of digital magazines that began on Medium and are now transitioning from to self hosted.
Self-hosted blogs are more flexible. You can make a blog out of it.
You can be a social networking, ecommerce store, or auction website. There is no limit. You can do whatever you like.