How do I get a Blog?

Earlier today, we took a look at what a blog is and whether you should you use a blog or a website.

If you’ve chosen to blog, then great; this will be a good tutorial; if not, there are many tutorials on how to build a website out there.

How do I get my own Blog?

Getting your own blog can be exciting, and you may want to rush through, but please don’t; because there are many things that need to be taken into account before deciding where to host it.

Blogger?

Blogger is a free service set up by Google that allows to create a blog in seconds and begin posting.

The problem is that all you do is post; you can’t optimize and get ranked in search engines easily; you can’t change your design or look very much; and you will be a sub domain off of Blogger, which is very unprofessional (note: I realize this blog is a sub-domain, and I am working to fix that).

Basically, Blogger is the worst.

WordPress?

WordPress is the base which pretty much all bloggers host their blog on. Why? Because WordPress allows you to customize your design, layout, optimize your blog easily, handle comments; really do anything you want.

But it isn’t the best option.

Self-Hosted WordPress

When you self-host something, it means you host something on your own domain. Although it costs about $100 a year with everything, I strongly recommend it.

  • Domain—Having your own domain is a powerful thing. On a sub-domain, the company which you’re hosting it from can take it away from you. But when you own your very own blog, no one (aside from the government) can take it away from; as long as you pay.
  • Customization—While you get a fair bit of customization on the free version of WordPress, it doesn’t compare to that of a real domain, where all the design controls are at your disposal.
  • SEO—SEO stands for search-engine-optimization, and it involves playing by the rules of the search engines to get ranked higher. I won’t go into the details here, but when you host something on a free domain, it won’t allow you to do very much to improve your ranking, while on self-hosted, it’s simple.
  • Plug-Ins—Plug-ins are awesome installations provided by WordPress which allow you to make your blog much better. The awesome thing; almost all of them are free.

This is my opinion on blog platforms. I realize there are many others such as Movable Type or TypePad, but Blogger and WordPress are the big ones, and the ones which I have used, so I wanted to address those. Tomorrow we will examine on what server to host the domain.

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