You want to start a blog. One of the first questions you might be asking yourself is, “What’s this really going to cost me?” How much does it cost to start a blog? What are some realistic numbers and is it worth it?
You have a number of choices when it comes to blogging and fees will vary depending on your needs. You can start a blog today that’s completely free, all the way up to spending a lot of money on hosting and design of your website. Let’s walk through the options together.
Free Options for Starting a Blog
Blog on Social Media
One fast, easy way to start a blog for free is to use a social media platform. Medium, You Tube (video blogging or vlogging) and Tumblr are options that come to mind for free blogging spaces. You can even use Facebook or Instagram. Keep in mind, though, that you do not own your content or make any decisions about what ultimately happens to content when you blog on a social media platform.
Blogger is a free blogging platform owned by Google.
Many of us who had blogs in the early days of blogging used Blogger. I started my first (short-lived) blog on Blogger.
While it’s true that there are still are plenty of people on Blogger, and a few who make quite a success of it, honestly when I see that a blog is on Blogger I figure that person isn’t all that serious about blogging. (Not being judgmental, just honest.) It’s a good free way to get started but not the place you want to be if you are serious about your blog or website.
The biggest advantage to Blogger is that it’s run by Google so, at least in theory, you have a better chance of your pages ranking higher.
If you blog on Blogger, your blog address will look like this “www.yourchosenname.blogspot.com” unless you purchase a domain name.
WordPress.com allows you to host a free blog on their site. Your domain address will look like this “www.yourchosenname.wordpress.com”. Again, when I see these I figure the person is in it at the hobby level but not especially serious. You are not allowed to put ads on any free WordPress sites and many affiliate programs do not allow you to use a free site for their programs.
How Much Does It Cost to Start a Blog?
For those who are serious about blogging and website ownership, you want to host your own website. The costs are minimal and the rewards are huge.
Starting a blog or website is not expensive when compared to most hobbies (and certainly cheap compared to most business ventures.)
At the time I am writing this post (2018, keep in mind prices change), you can start a website for around $100 and be set up for the first year.
Register a domain name – $20+ per year. The cost of a domain varies hugely depending on popularity. Most names are between $10-20 per year but some are much higher. Check Blue Host or Go Daddy to see the cost of the domain name you are planning to reserve.
Basic hosting package – $75+ per year. Bluehost is currently offering an introductory basic webhosting package for $3.95 per month, which includes free domain name, free site builders, 1-click WordPress installation, and 24/7 customer support. I started my website with Blue Host.
WordPress – Free
Design – Free – $350+. You can completely design your own website for free or you can hire a designer to put together a basic website, logo, and design for you. Cost for this would typically be $350-500 and up.
Keep in mind that domain name registration and hosting packages will be cheaper when you purchase several years hosting at once.
Now that you have a realistic idea of the how much it costs to start a blog, you can make decisions about moving forward with confidence.
Have you considered starting a blog but wonder about the costs? Share about it in the comments below.
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