Why You Should Host a Wordpress Blog on Your Own Domain

3 Reasons to Host Your Own Wordpress Blog

Host Your Own Wordpress Blog
Host Your Own Wordpress Blog. Richard Goerg/Photographer's Choice RF/Getty Images

You may already be using free blogging platforms to achieve some or all of your online goals, and that’s great. In the short and medium term, “outsourcing” the hosting of your content to a free platform seems like a reasonable move. After all, who wants to deal with technical hassles when all you want to do is write, share content, and establish your expertise in a profitable niche market?

However, from a business perspective, not hosting your own material can have severe repercussions.

If you’re looking to build a serious business online, you must host your own blog to maintain full ownership and control of it.

Here are some reasons why you should consider hosting your own Wordpress blog:

1. Ability to Personalize Your Own Domain

Whether for business or strictly social purposes, blogging these days is about self-branding.  Unfortunately, on free platforms like Blogger.com that have millions of users and blog posts, it’s difficult to stand out from the crowd – even with a super cool name.

No matter how much effort you put in creating valuable content and making a free blog presentable, the hard reality is that you are mostly promoting the platform, not you. Especially if you are forced to compromise on address name, since your first choices are often taken.

See Also: 3 Reasons You Should Choose a Brandable Domain Name for Your Website

2. You Really Own Your Blog – No Questions Asked

On a free platform, the blog is your blog – sort of.

You see, although your fantastic content is identified (hopefully) with you, the underlying company (Google, WordPress etc.) are the real owners of the site. Later on, if you want to move to another free platform (or eventually your own domain), you risk losing your readers, because you have no control over the site.

This situation is not unlike that of a lawyer or financial advisor who moves between firms during his career. Do you have the right to take your clients with you, or do they stay with your old employer?  Think about it. While conflicts with free blog platforms are not the norm, why risk conflict with corporations that may not have your interests at heart?

See Also: How to Register a Domain Name without Getting Ripped Off

3. Owning Your Own Blog is Extremely Inexpensive

Don’t let cost prevent you from hosting your own blog. By downloading quality (and more often than not, free) blogging software and purchasing your own domain name, you’ll be all set. Budgeting between 10 to 15 dollars a month should do the trick.

Convinced that you should host your own blog? If so, WordPress blog software is the way to go, because it is already tried and tested on millions of computers worldwide. Other options exist, but if this is your first venture into hosting, stick to WordPress.

In a nutshell, here are the steps you need to follow to get the job done:

A. Purchase a domain name from a reputable company.

Should be done for $15 or less. Some hosting companies, such as Bluehost, will offer a free domain name with your hosting account.

B. Find a Web Host for Your Blog

Most good web hosts these days allow you to easily install WordPress on your site with just a couple clicks. This makes it possible for people with absolutely no technical experience to get their content uploaded quickly and without hassle.

Some hosting companies also offer website builders that are relatively easy to use, offer customizable designs or themes, and include competitively priced free domain and free hosting plans.

More experienced and/or technically-oriented users can of course get a more standard plan.

You can see a list of my top 5 recommended web hosting providers here.

C. Install WordPress

The specific details of WordPress installation are outside the scope of this article. However, the basic procedure is pretty straightforward as described below:

  • Confirm that your host meets the requirements (PHP version 4.3 or greater; MySQL version 4.1.2 or greater)
  • Create a database with proper username and password. 
  • Download and unzip WordPress. 
  • In the WordPress folder, find and make a copy of wp-config-sample.php. Rename the copy to wp-config.php and fill in your database details. Save the new file. 
  • Upload the necessary files to the directory in your web host where the blog will reside.
  • Run the installation file. install-folder/wp-admin/install.php.

As mentioned above, most good web hosts (including our top recommended web hosts; including Bluehost Web Hosting) will allow you to bypass all of the complex “technical” steps listed above, and will install Wordpress onto your site with just a few simple clicks.