Should you use a Free WordPress blog or self-hosted WordPress blogging platform? This question is asked repeatedly. This article will help you understand the difference between the free or self-hosted blog and learn which one is right for you.
You can choose from many blogging platforms and today I am helping you with just two that seem to be the biggest source of confusion:
- WordPress.com Free blog
- WordPress.org Self-hosted blog
Choosing your blogging platform is extremely important because if you are serious, you’ll be using it for quite a long time. For example, if you start out with a free blog and then realize a few months later that you really should have done the self-hosted, it’s a major pain in the booty to make the switch.
You would have to export your blog posts from the free blog and then import them into the self-hosted blog. During that time you have some downtime. You would also have to take some time to setup the new WordPress self-hosted blog.
It’s a hassle! So make the right decision now. This post will help you decide.
Why You Need a Blogging Platform to Run a Blog
You need blogging software to start and run a blog. A blog is also called a website. These two terms are often interchangeable.
It should be to you as well if you want to build a blog that makes you money.
Of all the ways that you can start a blog, WordPress is the most popular. WordPress is a publishing platform that makes it easy for anyone to publish online.
You can choose from the FREE WordPress.com and a self-hosted paid WordPress.org.
They both have the technology that allows your blog content to be accessed on the Internet via your URL or website address.
Now, let’s get into the differences between the Free and self-hosted WordPress to help you make a good decision.
Reasons Free WordPress.com Blog Is A Waste Of Time
I bet that subtitle caught your eye! OK, so I was a little biased from the start but I will show you why.
This will only be true if you:
- Want to be a serious blogger
- Want to create a powerful, money making blog
Is that YOU?
WordPress.com is a great blog to start with if you have no intention of doing anything serious with your blog.
If you fit within the criteria above, you will run into some problems with FREE blogging platforms like WordPress.com. Basically it’s all about control.
- You do not control your blog’s content. You think you do because you wrote and published it, right? But, read the fine print and you will see that WordPress.com can remove your content at any time. With this in mind, your blog is NOT your asset.
- As above, they can also shut your blog down! Imagine waking up one day and your blog disappears from the blogishere? Not a pretty picture.
- You will have a website URL (address) that is not very memorable and certainly not too professional. It might be something like this: yourname.wordpress.com. Blah!
- Most ads are restricted. I heard someone say that certain Amazon ads are OK. Really? It would take you 100 years to make money since Amazon only pays about 4% and you can’t even choose any ad you want!
- Even if you could put an affiliate link (some are approved), most affiliate merchants frown on these free websites. Why? Because they are not taken seriously.
You want to make money blogging? Then don’t use a FREE WordPress blog! It is not the best way to start a blog if you are serious.
Reasons Self-Hosted WordPress.org is the Best Way to Start a Blog
When I started my first blog a few years ago, I went with self-hosted from the start. It wasn’t even a decision. Why? I wanted to make money!
I could not have accomplished that without a self-hosted WordPress.org blog! Here’s why your self-hosted blog is so important if you want to make the money:
- You own it. Your self-hosted blog is your business asset.
- Sell whatever you want.
- Place ads of YOUR choosing.
- More choice of blog designs (thousands and thousands)
- Freedom to add WordPress plugins which provide additional functionality to your blog. You can choose from over 42,000!
- Better for SEO (search engine optimization) – I get most of my traffic from organic search.
- No weird domain name. Choose your own domain name.
- Affiliate merchants and others advertisers take your blog seriously.
- It’s YOUR asset. I already said that but it’s worth repeating. I still make money from a blog posts I wrote in 2009! Why? It’s my asset.
When you start a self-hosted WordPress blog, you need to find the best web hosting provider. This is a company that provides the technology needed to “host” your blog.
There are many to choose from and you will pay a fee. Usually if you pay at least a year upfront the monthly cost comes out to much less.
I know what you are thinking. I can’t afford it! Cost?
Again, if you are serious about making money with your blog, then do it right. Remember, I told you I sold over $1 million worth of products. That was a nice commission, don’t you think? The $3.95 a month was definitely worth it. Do you agree?
Invest in your business. You can also write it off on your taxes.
I’ve answered some important questions about starting a blog with either free WordPress.com or self-hosted WordPress.org. Here’s the takeaway:
If you are a hobbyist or doing it purely for fun, the free version is the way to go.
If you want to make money like me and so many others, then pay for your web hosting. Do it the right way. If you have questions contact me!
I recommend SiteGround and happily started transferring my blogs over to them! Click here to get started.