Having a blog is not as confusing nor the novelty that it used to be. Blogs are available just about anywhere these days: blogging communities, search engines, social networks, etc. You can create a blog at one of those locations or use any one of the numerous free blogging services (WordPress, Blogger, LiveJournal, etc) or micro blog the days away at Twitter.
This post shares which free blog services to use and why it is important to self host your main blog. This is going to be a longer post, but Pittsburgh SEO Lady wants to make sure that this is clear for you, so that you are not wasting time or energy having to recreate the wheel. The goal is to get your blog set up and share your information as soon as possible. This is in respect to having one solid resource that is considered your main blog.
The following are recommended free blog services:
- WordPress is the #1 ranked free blog service.
- It can be challenging at first, though well worth the effort.
- You can download the WordPress application and host your own (best choice)
- You can build and host one freely on the WordPress site (second best choice).
- WordPress comes with a few design templates.
- You can select from thousands of paid and free WordPress themes.
- Widgets, Plugins, Flexibility & SEO friendly are the main reasons to use WordPress.
The best feature of WordPress is that you can install their software on your own hosting account. This is HIGHLY recommended if you are creating a professional blog; it is best to self-host WordPress Blogs for business use.
- Similar to WordPress but not free (starting at $4.95 a month)
- A few templates at the free level; more paid designs
- Widgets, Plugins, Good FAQ Help
- Has advanced tools like WordPress.
- Starting at $8.00 a month.
- Set up a website or blog.
- Excellent designs and features.
- Tracking available, but not as good at WordPress.
Blogger / Blogspot
- Great free service for new bloggers – ranked #4.
- Just a little challenging for new bloggers.
- Freedom for content and use; some flexibility.
- Comes with a few attractive templates or you can use your own.
One excellent feature of blogger is that you can use your own domain name / website address for free, and that Google now owns the free blogging service.
- Owned by Typepad’s parent company.
- It is free and has some flexibility.
- Comes with several design template options.
- Not as many stat features, but still good.
Other decent blog services:
Yahoo 360, AOL Journals, VOX, Xanga and Windows Live Spaces.
This section explains how you can make a blog.
In the past, Blogger.com has been a preferred blogging resource. It still is for some and also a great place to have a complimentary resource. On the other hand, you get more rapid exposure and have more control with WordPress.com. This is why WordPress.com has become the choice blogging resource for Internet Marketers, SEOs and other professionals. It can serve as a company website, community with membership and there is an excellent e-commerce plugin that can turn your blog into an online store. If you are self hosting, you can have a main blog from the top domain and install the e-commerce store to a sub directory. You can do the same when building a directory of niche blogs. There is so much flexibility when using WordPress.
Just keep in mind that WordPress.com is mighty strict about our using their free blogging service for commercial marketing. It conflicts with their terms and there is the risk that they will shut you down. The perk is that WordPress.org provides us the option of installing their blog service on our own domains and / or hosting accounts. This option provides you with the flexibility of making a commercial blog and / or marketing how every you choose. Some people go directly to WordPress.org to download the program and then upload it onto their own servers.
HERE IS A MUCH EASIER WAY TO DO THIS …
1. Go to ALMC Hosting
2. Purchase a domain name (website address).
3. Purchase the cheapest hosting account – around $4 a month
4. Go to the hosting area in your account.
5. Click on the new hosting account link to enter the set up area.
6. Choose which domain you want to attach to the hosting account.
7. You will receive an email when the set up has been completed.
8. Go back to your hosting account.
6. Click the Applications button.
7. Click the blogs link.
8. Choose WordPress and click install.
9. Follow the instructions to create user names & passwords (write these down)
Give the hosting a few minutes to install the WordPress and then check back. You will see a link that you should click on to login to your WordPress website. Start learning the environment and set up your blog
WORDPRESS TAKES A LITTLE TIME TO LEARN; ESPECIALLY WHEN SELF-HOSTED BUT IT IS REALLY MUCH BETTER FOR BUSINESS & SEO INTERNET MARKETING.
One more thing …
You will still want to go to the actual WordPress website and set up a free blog account.
1) This will provide you with the ability to get an API Code that you can use to connect all personal WordPress blogs to the main account and is needed for some plugins. This profile will circulate in their community.
2) You can use that as a “personal” blog where you strategically “link out” to any other WordPress blogs that you create on your own domain(s).
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