Hosting your first blog takes some planning. There are a few different options you can choose to get started. Some blog designers, having hosted their own blogs before, opt to host their own blog on their own computer. This saves them a couple bucks in hosting fees and allows them complete control over their server. But let’s face it: it’s not 1996 anymore and most people are better of letting a hosting company take care of absolutely everything.
You won’t be able to physically reboot your server, for example, but this will not prove to be an inconvenience because remote reboot options are available with most hosting companies nowadays. The average blog owner will probably never have to reboot anyway, a good shared hosting platform should be more than enough for most people.
Many people choose to use WordPress to start their first blog. WordPress is a feature rich, open source blogging software that allows you to set up your own blog through the Apache Web server. While WordPress is quite demanding when it comes to server resources, this will only represent a problem if you end up receiving huge volumes of traffic.
You have to install WordPress yourself but it isn’t as complicated as you might think. You also have to install PHP and a MySQL database on your server as well. Most hosting providers have PHP/MySQL installed by default, so there’s no need to worry about this issue.
If this technical mumbo-jumbo seems a bit too complicated, you may opt to host your blog on one of the free services offered by the company WordPress.com or Blogger.com. Both of these are awesome sites to get your blog up and running. The best thing about these sites is they are easily indexed by the search engines. This means that any information you present through them will get listed by the search engines fairly quickly.
Search engines use complex algorithms to determine what quality content is, what gets listed and what gets discarded from their search results. If you follow the content rules, you can find your blog at the top of the search engine listings in no time. In a great majority of cases, you want to blog about and include keywords that are low in the competition scale but juicy when it comes to search volume.
Hosting your first blog should be a learning experience. You should be prepared to try certain things out and fail but always learn from your mistakes. Learn what you did wrong and make reparations to make your blog even better than it was before. You can blog about whatever you want, just make sure the content is high quality. There is nothing worse to a website visitor than having to drudge through worthless text they don’t want to read. It’s a surefire way of making sure that the visitors never come back. If you ever want them back as a visitor, you’ll have to do it in disguise and create a whole new blog and graphics set.
With that said, just treat hosting your first blog as something important but not complicated. It doesn’t take much knowledge to get your first blog hosted. That is as simple as going to the nearest free blog host and signing up. It’s what you do with your blog that counts. Just like in the ocean, you have to treat the environment with respect, not fear. Don’t be afraid that the visitors won’t take interest in your blog, as the Internet is very impersonal in some cases. As long as you provide quality content that people want to read, you should do very well. Get some people together to take a look at what you are posting on your blog to gain an honest opinion of what people will think. If you get a positive response, find out what you did right and expand upon it.
After you get your first reader and subscriber base, you should be on the right path. Once you start receiving more traffic, you can think about upgrading to a hosting plan which puts more resources at your disposal. So which are you going to choose? Are you going to try and host the blog on your home PC by yourself? Do you have enough bandwidth resources to do that? Are you sure you are savvy enough to know what you’re doing? Or are you going to choose to host your blog on a paid service (the option we recommend for reasons should be obvious)? What about a free blog hosting service? Whichever way you go, hosting a blog is really easy.
Here’s what we’d recommend:
Register your own domain and don’t use free services like Blogger. Having complete control over your site and domain helps a lot.
Start with a shared hosting plan and take it from there.
Once you start receiving more traffic, install WP-Cache and if that will not be enough, ask your hosting provider what hosting plan you should switch to. In most cases, a VPS will be more than enough but if you are running a blog with a lot of plugins (plugins tend to be quite demanding when it comes to system resources), you might need to go with a dedicated server at a certain point.
There are many guides available on the Internet that can walk you through hosting your blog and tweaking WordPress. There are also many others who will show you how to host a blog on one of the free blog hosting sites like Blogger. Whatever the case, blogs can and will generate crazy amounts of traffic if you do your job right.