So you have decided to start an online blog- Great! Some people blog because it’s fun, others do it for fame and glory; and yet others build their blogging presence and audience to make money. All of these choices are equality valid. You, as the manager of your very own weblog, are the sole decider. However, if your blog gains in popularity and readers flock to read your posts, this may have an impact on your weblog hosting provider. You’ll probably want to ensure good web hosting performance. Then, who knows, you may also want to avail your blog of some of those fancy ‘plug-ins’ (extra software programs) to make the experience for your visitors even more satisfying. What then are your hosting options for your blog?
Fun, Free and Un-guaranteed
Let’s say you feel overwhelming love for ferrets and the urge to express those feelings now and again in a blog. Ferret-lovers are something of a minority in the universe of all internet surfers. You may just attract a modest number of fans. In that case, a free website hosting service may be sufficient. Free weblog hosting services exist to get you started blogging right away. The user interfaces are typically simple (you’re a ferret-lover, not a computer geek, right?) There is often a choice of templates available so that you can alter the appearance of your blog for your visitors. What do you have to give in return? You may have to accept the web hosting provider’s own publicity on your blog pages. You’ll also be sharing online hosting resources with other sites, so page loading times can sometimes be s-l-o-o-o-w.
Taking It More Seriously
If you want better guarantees of performance and no extraneous adverts, it may be worth paying a little for the privilege. Perhaps you’d like to make sure everybody gets your daily post about ozone levels in your hometown. Or maybe you’re running a community-oriented blog about schooling (for instance).Then you can either pay a modest subscription for shared hosting or move up a level to VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting. You get what you pay for in both cases. Shared weblog hosting should give reasonably quick page-loading, unless someone else tries to hog all the resources. VPS weblog hosting gives you your own weblog hosting resources that nobody else can use, plus the possibility to run more of your own programs to add functionality to your blog. Consequently VPS costs a little more – but it’s often still very affordable.
Dedicated and Managed Weblog Hosting
So now you’ve stopped blogging about ferrets and started blogging about the national football league – and your readership has exploded. So therefore have your possibilities for making money (if this is your goal). It may well be worth paying still more for your webhosting service, to guarantee rock-solid performance and online availability. A dedicated webhosting server means you get the whole system, for you alone! (VPS users just get a dedicated fraction of the system). Managed weblog hosting can offer you support services to update and maintain your server. Some providers also advise you on good plug-ins (extra software programs) to use with your blog, or bad ones you should stop using. Both options cost more. However, if that frees you up to make even more income from your blog, you should see a net profit.
A Word about WordPress
WordPress is the most popular blogging platform in existence. It’s not the only one, but it does have a couple of major advantages for those starting out as bloggers. First, it’s easy to use. Second, it does not require much in the way of system resources. And thirdly, thanks to its popularity, there are many templates and plug-ins available (some free, some paying) to help you blog even better. WordPress.com offers free WordPress blog hosting and other hosting companies have hosting solutions specifically for WordPress blogs too. So while it may not necessarily be your final choice, WordPress often merits a place in a shortlist of potential blogging and hosting solutions for these reasons.