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experienced Bloggers - is it worth paying for a domain name?

(19 Posts)

I've got a new blog and unlike previous blogs which were just for fun, I'm hoping to make a bit of a 'go' of this one. I've set it up with Wordpress but am not sure whether I should pay for a domain name so it's a .com address rather than the wordpress.com address. What do you think? What have you done?

MmeGuillotine Fri 18-Jan-13 16:08:48

I initially paid for the domain name and then 'pointed' the Wordpress site at it so that it looked like it was mine, all mine but was actually just Wordpress. I've now moved to self hosting though.

I'd definitely recommend getting an actual domain name as it looks so much more professional. It also depends what you want to do with the blog as well though - I've chatted to a few PR people who have asked me to recommend other bloggers to them but stipulated that they only wanted ones with their own domain name.

Thanks so much - that's what I thought, to be honest. I am not totally sure what I want to do with the blog but I think there might be some (probably fairly limited) commercial potential in it so I want to be careful to get it right.

TheFallenNinja Fri 18-Jan-13 16:51:19

Your domain name has only a tiny effect on being found by the search engines, content is king as is good SEO which Wordpress does out of the box.

Domain names are relatively cheap though and you can forward them anywhere.

I use hover.com for mine.

MmeGuillotine Fri 18-Jan-13 19:46:56

Everybody, if you think there is some commercial potential then I'd definitely get your own domain name as you can't do anything to make money on a Wordpress site so having adverts, links to your products or Amazon Associates links etc are all against the rules.

If I could start my blog again from scratch, I think I would go for self hosting straight away (it's caused loads of issues switching so late in the day) but if that's an issue right now then at least get the domain name now - if only to make sure someone else doesn't swipe the one you want! I use Heart Internet for mine. smile

Ah. Thank you for the replies, it's very nice of you all to help.

Hmm. So if I set up a Wordpress site and then pay for the domain name through them does that scupper me commercially? Or is there a way round that?

I do already have my own website somewhere else that I pay for (domain nam and hosting) monthly but it's not a blog, and it took me quite a while to figure out how to do that...

MmeGuillotine Fri 18-Jan-13 23:56:20

I did that initially but because the blog itself was still hosted on Wordpress, I couldn't use it to advertise or sell. Sorry! The only way around this was to move to self hosting. sad

Whatsamsawtoday Fri 25-Jan-13 12:54:17

Hi,

When I first started blogging it was a bit of fun (and still is - i just can't believe i've been doing it now for almost 3 years!). However, early on I realised that trying to remember the name of my blog with the wordpress bit was a bit of a mouthful! The key reason why i moved to self-hosted was because of the plug-ins and stuff that I wanted to use on wordpress would not be available on their site if i kept it there and so that necessitated me moving.

To be honest, I am not tech minded at all. I just about get by, and the move was aided by my BF who understands tech a lot more than me!

I bought my site name at godaddy which cost about £10 for 3 years. I then host via another company (forget the name) and it is £3 per month. Godaddy also offer hosting packages so can be v easy.

I have v pleased that I moved early on, as even though my blog was only about 6-7 months old when I did it, there were still glitches with trying to move the content etc. So my advice would be to move asap. It really is such a small cost for so much more flexibility.

I do not run a commercial blog or have ads, however I am sure that if you were trying to do that it would be more appealing for advertisers that you had your own domain and your own "identity" so to speak

Hope that helps

sam

MmeLindor Fri 25-Jan-13 12:57:50

It saves a lot of hassle doing it now, than shifting it all later. It doesn't cost much to self-host and is really worthwhile, imo.

lulastic Fri 25-Jan-13 13:20:34

Hello
Yep, agree with the last poster. I just moved to self-hosted from wordpress.com a month ago and am gutted I didn't do it earlier!
If you do want tot take blogging a bit more seriously, and think you might end up with your own site in a little while it is REALLY worth doing now, for as little as a few ££ a month.
Saves the moving, and also the re-establishing of your blog online (google forgets you for a few months)
You can also accept ads to cover those little costs too, which wordpress.com doesn't allow.
Good luck!

MmeLindor Fri 25-Jan-13 14:14:27

Yes, good point Lulu. I lost a good few followers when I moved to new blog.

katese11 Fri 25-Jan-13 20:56:45

OK, hit me with it...what are the problems with the move to self-hosting? I'm planning to buy a domain and self-host soon but am worried about losing followers/content. I have 90,000ish words on there...

MmeLindor Fri 25-Jan-13 22:02:21

Generally moving the content over is not the issue, but getting followers to move with you might be. Depends on how they follow you. Do you have an email list?

You start again with building up followers and stats - possibly of interest if you work with PR companies, who would want to know how many hits.

Sometimes formatting goes a bit wonky or you lose photos. I seem to remember that the tags / categories didn't work properly.

Dailypolish Fri 25-Jan-13 23:44:54

I say it's worth it even if it can be tough to do the moving. The easiest solution is just getting your old site to automatically redirect to your new one (same for email) so you don't hace to worry about things falling through the cracks. I come and go with my blog after years of nonstop blogging and I think even if I quit I'd still hold onto my domain...all the work and love I put into my blog! I'd want to hold onto it for as long as it felt important. smile

katese11 Sat 26-Jan-13 19:28:40

they follow me mainly through wordpress...i'm a bit worried about starting all over again... think i'll buy my domain and then think about self-hosting a bit more

katese11 Sat 26-Jan-13 19:30:32

thanks for the help btw smile

MmeLindor Sat 26-Jan-13 20:31:42

Yes, that is an issue then.

The problem is, the longer you wait, the more readers you will lose.

zanuda Wed 20-Feb-13 09:51:26

everybodysang
Why don't you want to put blog on the website you already have? Or you want to blog about something different?

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