Author Topic: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)  (Read 12810 times)

limeandpepper

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Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« on: March 15, 2014, 06:05:22 AM »
Hello, people with blogs!

If you have a blog:

1) What publishing platform / content management system / blogging tool do you use? E.g. Blogger, Wordpress, SquareSpace, etc. And are you happy with it? Pros and cons?
2) How much does it cost to run your blog? (Include one-off costs and ongoing costs e.g. website design, hosting, domain registrations, maintenance, etc.)
3) Do you earn any money from your blog (or as a result of it)? If so, how much, and with what methods?

I'll answer the questions now.

1) I use Blogger. I'm happy with it, it's so easy to use, but only wish it wasn't blocked in some countries. Sigh.
2) Free. I did everything myself, Blogger is a free host, and I didn't go for a custom domain.
3) Yes, about $50/month. With ads. I've also gotten a couple of freelance gigs in the past - creating content for other companies - and I wouldn't have gotten those gigs if I didn't have my blog in my resume.

The reason I'm curious is because I'm thinking about starting up another blog, which hopefully won't cost too much, and also, hopefully, may bring in income or job opportunities, and I am considering using a different platform. While I like Blogger, it's blocked in China, and the new blog is going to have a lot of travel content, so it's not the ideal mix.

shadowmoss

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2014, 06:13:15 AM »
I have a blog on Blogger.  It's just a personal one, and I specifically do not monetize it.  Just a personal preference.  If/when I make a change it will be to get my personal domain set up on a different place than it is now, or get a new one totally, and run my own blog software where I can do/say what I want.  Until that time, I just post random thoughts and what I'm doing, which no one in their right mind would pay for.

Some of the RV bloggers have had issues posting their Amazon links and such on blogger and wordpress as if you have a free blog there are some restrictions on what you can do to make money.  Read the fine print.

spoonman

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2014, 09:25:15 AM »
I'm interested to see how this thread develops because I am thinking of starting my own blog.

Lime, if I may ask, how many page views do you get each month in order to generate around $50/month in blog income?  How long did it take you to build that kind of income.  The sort of blog income you are making is significant, that could make all the difference in the world after leaving paid work.

limeandpepper

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2014, 10:09:58 AM »
Thanks for the interest, spoonman!

The page view stats is an interesting question. According to Blogger, it's at least 9000/month these days. However, according to other sources that I have registered with, it's about half that!

I must note that the earnings are not from Google Ads, though I have recently installed one unit on the sidebar, but so far the income is negligible. I also personally dislike intrusive ads, so they're all on the sidebar, which means they may get less attention (and therefore less profit), but I'm fine with that. I get exactly $50/month consistently (regardless of page views) from an Australian company who approached me for an ad unit placement. I also have an ad unit with another Australian company, and the income is calculated in accordance to the number of unique visits and click-through rate, so it varies, but usually it's just a few dollars a month. Since these are Australian companies, I don't know if they will continue to place ads with me if I'm spending chunks of time overseas and thus have less Australian content, but I guess if I still have enough Australian readers, it would be fine.

So, I guess that also answers the question about how long it took to build the income. I never really focused on that, I was just blogging as a hobby (and also because I thought it could be good for a potential writing career). I was blogging for about 2.5 years before the $50/month offer came in, and I thought, sweet! All I had to do was install the thing once (no ongoing maintenance required), continue with my hobby and get pocket money for doing what I was already doing anyway.

I'm thinking I might try to be more pro-active about getting income with the new blog, while still placing priority on the content and presentation, of course.

gratefulandfrugal

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2014, 12:45:50 PM »
A few months ago, I started a blog on Wordpress simply to start writing more, and so far, I've found the process to be really enjoyable.

CrochetStache

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2014, 06:16:57 PM »
I started a blog with wordpress last summer and do hope to use it for profit hopefully in the next 2 years or so.

In the meantime I'm using it as a learning tool for the ins and outs of how to create and update the site, the computer jargon, building up my art portfolio, figuring out how to get a video podcast going, etc...

I've been really happy with wordpress so far :)

limeandpepper

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2014, 06:25:23 PM »
Thanks for the replies so far!

CrochetStache, are you with wordpress.com or wordpress.org? I really want to try wordpress.org, but I'm just worried about how user-friendly it is. I remember setting up a wordpress.com account once, years ago, and just didn't find it intuitive enough - I'm hoping wordpress.org is easier/better?

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2014, 07:02:48 PM »
Wordpress.com. I like WP much better than Blogger.

If I was going to monetize, I'd only ever consider Wordpress.org with a custom domain and host. Too many legal issues otherwise.

ratrationale

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2014, 09:27:03 AM »
Started blogging in January, not receiving any income from it. Using free wordpress.com, nice simple system, ads are a little annoying, but reasonable. Best of luck to all with your blogging!

Stacey

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2014, 11:38:47 AM »

I'm using wordpress.com.  I've been actively blogging for just over a year now and I really enjoy it.  I do pay for my domain name (maybe $30 a year), but that's it.  And I don't make any money on the blog.  My understanding from reading the fine print is that you generally can't monetize a blog using wordpress.com.  I'm thinking of starting a new blog/transitioning over to a blog on wordpress.org so that I can monetize it.  Has anyone done this?  Any good resources you can direct me to?  This is all new to me, so I'll probably have s steep learning curve.

Nords

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2014, 03:56:14 PM »
1) What publishing platform / content management system / blogging tool do you use? E.g. Blogger, Wordpress, SquareSpace, etc. And are you happy with it? Pros and cons?
WordPress.org on Bluehost. 

As envious as Google may be of WordPress, I think that WP is going to stay the 800-pound gorilla of blogging for quite a while.  I also think it's difficult for Google to out-innovate the open-source software community.

Bluehost has been trashed by many customers, and Bluehost has probably earned that reputation, but so far they've treated me fine.  The one time I needed to phone them up they were able to show that the problem was with the ISP... and they even showed me how to "motivate" my ISP to fix their ragged gear.

2) How much does it cost to run your blog? (Include one-off costs and ongoing costs e.g. website design, hosting, domain registrations, maintenance, etc.)
I forget the price, but whatever special/discount offer they have and for as long a period as possible.

If you're going to seriously commit to blogging, then shelling out for a three-year contract will make you serious about your commitment.  If you decide to bail out before three years, then the extra length of the contract may earn you a few extra bucks when you sell your blog on Flippa.

3) Do you earn any money from your blog (or as a result of it)? If so, how much, and with what methods?
I blogged for two years on WordPress.COM because I was marketing a book, not monetizing a blog.  When I decided to start earning money on the blog with AdSense, I already had a modest audience and my first month's income was over $100.  10 months later when I sold the blog, I was earning over $250/month.  The new owner has doubled the traffic and is probably earning double that. 

Google AdSense, individual corporate ads, Amazon Associates (including an aStore of resources), sponsored posts ($50-$100 per post), and paid links.  The new owner started up some affiliate programs with military-friendly companies like USAA.

The reason I'm curious is because I'm thinking about starting up another blog, which hopefully won't cost too much, and also, hopefully, may bring in income or job opportunities, and I am considering using a different platform. While I like Blogger, it's blocked in China, and the new blog is going to have a lot of travel content, so it's not the ideal mix.
WordPress has plenty of plugins and themes for managing multiple blogs via one interface.  The owner of The-Military-Guide.com has at least two other blogs that he manages through one multi-site plugin.

I must note that the earnings are not from Google Ads, though I have recently installed one unit on the sidebar, but so far the income is negligible. I also personally dislike intrusive ads, so they're all on the sidebar, which means they may get less attention (and therefore less profit), but I'm fine with that.
Great intentions, but that's why people use ad blockers.  You could load up your blog with Google AdSense (three ads per page), two Google search boxes, and link units.  You could also have AdSense automatically serve mobile ads to your mobile readers.

In the meantime you're hurting yourself.  The people who "dislike intrusive ads" are going to use an ad blocker.  The people who complain about intrusive ads should either start using an ad blocker or should just go somewhere else.  (I had only one complaint in 10 months while steadily building readers and income.)  The people who don't use ad blockers actually seem to enjoy seeing your ads, and they'll click on them, and they'll bring in a lot of Amazon affiliate income.

I'm using wordpress.com.  I've been actively blogging for just over a year now and I really enjoy it.  I do pay for my domain name (maybe $30 a year), but that's it.  And I don't make any money on the blog.  My understanding from reading the fine print is that you generally can't monetize a blog using wordpress.com.  I'm thinking of starting a new blog/transitioning over to a blog on wordpress.org so that I can monetize it.  Has anyone done this?  Any good resources you can direct me to?  This is all new to me, so I'll probably have s steep learning curve.
I don't know if WordPress.COM still has their WordAds program, but my experience was that I could make at least 10x on WordPress.ORG with the other advertising options... and that was after expenses.

I used BlogCrafted.com to do the switch.  If you sign up for Bluehost through BlogCrafted's site then he gets a huge affiliate commission from Bluehost, and he'll give you a huge discount on his fee.  I signed up for a Bluehost account (through BlogCrafted's affiliate link) and then handed over my passwords to Scott at BlogCrafted.  He made the whole move happen in under 48 hours, and then I started doing the ads.

You can also outsource all of your blog's advertising to Crystal Stemberger at BudgetingInTheFunStuff.com.  She takes 25% of the gross but she'll show you how to implement (and ramp up) all of those programs mentioned above.  Her skills will probably earn you more money (even after her cut) than you'll earn on your own.

Two other suggestions:
1.  Consider signing up for Bloggers Helping Bloggers (BlogMentoring.com) or some other support group.  They help you articulate what you're trying to do and force you to commit to it.
2.  Consider attending a blogger conference in your niche-- like FinCon14 for personal finance bloggers.  You want something relatively small (100-500 bloggers) with enough room for individual attention where you can network, inspire, and persevere.

CrochetStache

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2014, 05:22:59 PM »
Limeandpepper,

I'm currently on wp.COM, apparently one is not supposed to use the wp.COM for money earning. At this time that works for me, I am planning on moving the site over to a wp.ORG option as I get closer to my goal. The wp people will do it for you for a fee of something near $100 or so. I'd like to avoid that fee and do it myself but we'll see how much I've learned between now and then. Sometimes it's a good idea and less expensive in the long run to pay an expert.

I do pay for my domain name over on godaddy.com.

Mortgage Free Mike

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2014, 06:34:59 PM »
I recently left my full-time job as a network TV producer to launch Save on (Almost) Everything, but I previously ran a blog that was featured on MMM.

I've only been doing this for about two months with the new site.

When I started blogging in 2010, I used Blogger. I quickly switched to Wordpress and never looked back. I also purchased a domain (both times) and affordable hosting.

Currently, I'm with GoDaddy. I think it worked out to about $70. I've used Bluehost and had no problems.

As for monetization, I can tell you my previous blog made a good amount of money. Right now, I have Google ads, Amazon Associates and referral links running.

I'm hoping it leads to some new career opportunities more than anything.

limeandpepper

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2014, 06:50:14 PM »
Great responses! Thank you for your really comprehensive post, Nords! Lots of food for thought.

For those of you who use Bluehost, it sounds like some of you also register your domain name with another company e.g. GoDaddy. I noticed that Bluehost also offers a free domain name when you sign up. I've heard that it is safer to keep the hosting company and domain registration company separate, is that why you guys have done it that way?

Zikoris

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #14 on: March 16, 2014, 07:07:53 PM »
We have a small Wordpress blog, 90% about frugality and 10% bragging about our cool vacations. It costs nothing and earns nothing.

Mortgage Free Mike

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2014, 02:49:18 PM »
As for your BlueHost question, I have had the domain with the hosting at times-- and separate at times. It hasn't seemed to make a difference for me, except in cost.
You might save money by keeping them together.

fantabulous

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2014, 03:20:08 PM »
Quote
1) What publishing platform / content management system / blogging tool do you use? E.g. Blogger, Wordpress, SquareSpace, etc. And are you happy with it? Pros and cons?

Wordpress currently. It's easy enough to find a decent looking theme for it, as I'm too lazy to create my own theme. I'm not super duper happy with Wordpress, but haven't really cared for other blogging engines like Habari either. No inclination to re-invent the wheel and create my own blogging engine.

Quote
2) How much does it cost to run your blog? (Include one-off costs and ongoing costs e.g. website design, hosting, domain registrations, maintenance, etc.)

Something around $10/year for domain renewal, plus some nebulous and unbudgeted amount of money for hardware maintenance. I colocate a server for free at my employer (a datacenter/web host). If I were leave the company and have to take my server down, the blog is so low traffic I could move it to Digital Ocean (never actually used them) for $5/month.

Quote
3) Do you earn any money from your blog (or as a result of it)? If so, how much, and with what methods?

Not a dime. It's a personal blog and covers some topics that I would not want random potential employers seeing. I mostly post to keep track of my budget and to sort through some personal issues. I also use it as something of a sandbox for the backend stuff of running a Wordpress site, as that's fairly commonly used by customers of my company. That is, it helps me try new methods of greasing a figurative pig.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2014, 03:31:28 PM by fantabulous »

MrCash

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2014, 04:10:42 PM »
I have a blog that I just recently started.

1.  I use Bluehost along with Wordpress
2.  The only costs for me are the hosting.  I think it cost me like $170ish for two years.
3.  I've just started, so I don't have enough data on this to be helpful.


CarDude

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2014, 06:41:30 PM »
After distributing far too much advice in person on car safety, I was finally convinced to start an online blog on the topic. Slowly cultivating a group of readers and a trickle of income.

pac_NW

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2014, 07:19:52 PM »
Blue host and wordpress.com

spoonman

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2014, 08:30:59 PM »
Now I'm fired up to get a blog going!  Some really good advice and info here.

Stacey

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #21 on: March 21, 2014, 10:05:00 PM »

I don't know if WordPress.COM still has their WordAds program, but my experience was that I could make at least 10x on WordPress.ORG with the other advertising options... and that was after expenses.

I used BlogCrafted.com to do the switch.  If you sign up for Bluehost through BlogCrafted's site then he gets a huge affiliate commission from Bluehost, and he'll give you a huge discount on his fee.  I signed up for a Bluehost account (through BlogCrafted's affiliate link) and then handed over my passwords to Scott at BlogCrafted.  He made the whole move happen in under 48 hours, and then I started doing the ads.

You can also outsource all of your blog's advertising to Crystal Stemberger at BudgetingInTheFunStuff.com.  She takes 25% of the gross but she'll show you how to implement (and ramp up) all of those programs mentioned above.  Her skills will probably earn you more money (even after her cut) than you'll earn on your own.

Two other suggestions:
1.  Consider signing up for Bloggers Helping Bloggers (BlogMentoring.com) or some other support group.  They help you articulate what you're trying to do and force you to commit to it.
2.  Consider attending a blogger conference in your niche-- like FinCon14 for personal finance bloggers.  You want something relatively small (100-500 bloggers) with enough room for individual attention where you can network, inspire, and persevere.

Awesome advice, Nords!  Thanks so much.  I'm definitely going to look into all of these ideas as I expand my current blog and toy with a few more blogging ideas that I have rolling around. 

FunkyStickman

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #22 on: March 22, 2014, 08:59:24 AM »
Hello, people with blogs!

If you have a blog:

1) What publishing platform / content management system / blogging tool do you use? E.g. Blogger, Wordpress, SquareSpace, etc. And are you happy with it? Pros and cons?
2) How much does it cost to run your blog? (Include one-off costs and ongoing costs e.g. website design, hosting, domain registrations, maintenance, etc.)
3) Do you earn any money from your blog (or as a result of it)? If so, how much, and with what methods?


I use Wordpress. So far, I've been very pleased with it. The mobile app is pretty nice, too.

I have a custom domain and am hosted by Hostgator, though from what I've heard recently, if my blog takes off, I may switch hosts.

I think so far I've earned about $10. Lol. That wasn't my goal, though.

fallstoclimb

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #23 on: July 04, 2014, 11:04:18 AM »
Resurrecting this thread:

If someone were starting a blog from scratch, would you recommend they do wordpress with Bluehost (or other hosting), or start a free blog and see how their traffic develops?

If you do go with a hosting site like Bluehost:  do you actually need to pay for things like site backup pro (do they not backup without this??) or domain privacy protection?  I do want to stay anonymous, I think....but this worked out to be $100/year.  I have so little faith in my ability to monetize (although of course I am interested in it) that I don't know if I can "make up" this money, and it seemed un-Mustachian to pay for a hobby I could do for free.  But I do want to do this right.

I've started drafting posts, and I think my blog will be solid, although probably hard to monetize.  It's on personal development while keeping societal development in mind:  minimalism, frugalism, feminism, etc.  I'm a decent writer and I think people might like to read what I have to say, but these blog topics are already well saturated and I'm doing this in my free time -- so I am not sure what kind of traffic to expect. 

Mr. Frugalwoods

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #24 on: July 04, 2014, 12:06:59 PM »
My wife and I write a blog.  As the tech nerd side of the equation, seems like I should answer this.

  • Wordpress hosted at bluehost.  Is it great?  No.  But it is super cheap.  And with a proper caching strategy you won't notice that their servers are really slow.  It's the 1996 Honda Odyssey of hosting.  It gets you where you need to go for stupid cheap but merging onto the interstate can be dicey :-)
  • $3.40 (?) a month hosting.  $8/year for the domain.
  • We aren't currently focusing on monetization (read: we don't make any money but we also don't try).  For us it's more of an entertaining outlet for the stuff we're already doing or talking about.  Someday I imagine we'll think harder about making something from it, but doesn't seem like it's worth it at this point.

One note on the hosting: the cheapest prices are for prepaying years in advance.  If you know you are going to actually blog, then it's a great deal.  If you aren't sure and you want to dip your toes in the water... then it's much better to start off with a free site and see if you stick with it.  It's easy to migrate from wordpress.com to a .org self hosted blog, so don't let that scare you from trying the free option first.

Rebecca Stapler

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #25 on: July 04, 2014, 02:34:28 PM »
Resurrecting this thread:

If someone were starting a blog from scratch, would you recommend they do wordpress with Bluehost (or other hosting), or start a free blog and see how their traffic develops?

If you do go with a hosting site like Bluehost:  do you actually need to pay for things like site backup pro (do they not backup without this??) or domain privacy protection?  I do want to stay anonymous, I think....but this worked out to be $100/year.  I have so little faith in my ability to monetize (although of course I am interested in it) that I don't know if I can "make up" this money, and it seemed un-Mustachian to pay for a hobby I could do for free.  But I do want to do this right.

I've started drafting posts, and I think my blog will be solid, although probably hard to monetize.  It's on personal development while keeping societal development in mind:  minimalism, frugalism, feminism, etc.  I'm a decent writer and I think people might like to read what I have to say, but these blog topics are already well saturated and I'm doing this in my free time -- so I am not sure what kind of traffic to expect.

I know a blogger who started off with free hosting on WP and when it came time to switch, she paid a bunch of money to switch it over and also get a new look. If you're technically inclined, you might be able to do the switch yourself. But if you're not technically inclined, switching might present too much of a financial hurdle (once you have your readers and want to keep your content, etc.).

If it would bring you enjoyment to blog, and you find the smartest way to do it for the least amount of money, I don't see that as anti-mustacian :)

The thing about the personal finance blogosphere is that, yes, it's saturated. But the story that it doesn't have is yours -- and that's the one people want to read!

If you can travel reward your way to FinCon (or order the virtual pass after the conference), you will learn a lot and make some valuable connections with other bloggers -- you will find your readership climb by working w/ other bloggers and then you can raise your revenue.

Jon_Snow

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #26 on: July 04, 2014, 05:02:00 PM »
Whoa, this thread is treasure trove for me. I plan to start a blog shortly after my ER date in September. I haven't the foggiest idea as how to proceed. Thought about starting a similar thread, but it looks like my streak of not starting a thread will continue on....

A quick glance at the thread has already revealed that I have a lot to learn.

Sparkie

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #27 on: July 04, 2014, 06:27:37 PM »
I use jimdo (.com)

Very intuitive and easy to set up a site, and lots of assitance available if you need it. It's free if you have jimdo in your domain name, eg MMM.jimdo.com. I chose to pay $5 a month to have my own domain name, which also includes the domain registration.

You can host blogs, e stores, obtain stats  etc etc.

I have no ads, so no monitisation for me, but that wasn't my aim.

The Fake Cheap

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #28 on: July 04, 2014, 09:26:52 PM »

Lots of great input here.  I've learned a lot just from skimming through what is here. 

I started my blog on blogger and was there for about 2 months, then tried out Wordpress.com and liked it much better than blogger.   The blog costs me nothing and also earns nothing.  I would like to try to get a trickle of income out of it at some point.  I'm not tech savvy at all, so I'm not sure what is involved with that, but again, there seems to be a lot of good information posted here. 

Nords

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #29 on: July 04, 2014, 09:48:51 PM »
If someone were starting a blog from scratch, would you recommend they do wordpress with Bluehost (or other hosting), or start a free blog and see how their traffic develops?
You're not going to "start a free blog and see how it develops".  You're going to research your chosen topic and keywords and audience and other parameters.  Then when you launch your blog, you're going to deliberately hunt down and build the audience.

So start a blog on a paid host and start monetizing it as soon as you can.  Otherwise you're going to someday have the hassle of moving the blog to a paid host... especially if someday you plan to sell the blog.

If you do go with a hosting site like Bluehost:  do you actually need to pay for things like site backup pro (do they not backup without this??) or domain privacy protection?  I do want to stay anonymous, I think....but this worked out to be $100/year.  I have so little faith in my ability to monetize (although of course I am interested in it) that I don't know if I can "make up" this money, and it seemed un-Mustachian to pay for a hobby I could do for free.  But I do want to do this right.
I'd pay for the regular services and none of the extras. 

Domain privacy is a feature of domain registration, which you can choose to do with Bluehost or with any other domain-name registrar.  (It's just more convenient when the domain name registration and hosting are consolidated with the same company-- and more risky.)  I think just about every registrar charges for privacy "because they can".

Here's a thought about registration:  why do you want to be private?  Depending on your blogging subject, you may want to be well-known as a public figure.  In that case privacy may be redundant-- or you could rent a post office box.  If someone wants to find out who you are for a lawsuit or a DMCA takedown, registration privacy is no protection.

Finally:  are you starting a blog as entertainment or as a paying hobby?  If it's "entertainment" then spend the money out of your entertainment budget.  If it's a paying hobby then the startup costs will keep you motivated (and hold you accountable) to put the effort into building the revenue stream.

lysistrata

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #30 on: July 04, 2014, 11:57:23 PM »
1. I use wordpress.org and I love it - very easy to learn and easy to fix if something goes wrong (usually).
2. Around $10 a month for hosting and $10 a year for domain. When I was selling downloadable products I also paid $10 a month for a service that did that. Now I sell books on amazon so don't pay this.
3. Yep. Anything from $50 a month to $10,000 a month, from a range of different things: mainly freelance writing and columns on other websites - opportunities I got because of my blog. Affiliates (mainly Amazon - not very lucrative yet, but I'm installing affiliate links in lots of old posts now, trying to bring this up a bit), direct ad sales, sponsored posts and sales of my fiction + non-fiction books.

I write about a specific music genre, so my blog is quite niche :)

FrugalZony

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #31 on: July 05, 2014, 01:22:27 AM »
My blog is very niche and I have had it for a year
It's a lot of work and very little income, but I write mainly about my hobby, deals and try to inspire others to pay it forward in a way

I am selfhosted Wordpress on Bluehost

MMM has a great blogpost about started a blog and he has all his affiliate links there, which I used when I signed up, so I could give back

I went to a conference in my niche a few weeks ago and had a blast, but it did not do much in terms of increase in readership
I guess I am not aggressive enough marketing it

I have a plan for a second blog, but have not started yet for lack of time.

plantingourpennies

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #32 on: July 06, 2014, 10:19:50 AM »
1.) Wordpress with bluehost-very happy.
2.) 10 bucks a month I think?
3.) Maybe 50$ a month in adsense?

Blogging, for the vast majority of people, is not a way to make money. Its a way to be a part of a community that shares a common interest. Having said that, the reason we have been able to grow our net worth at the rate we have is because have been a part of the PF community!

Best,
Mr.Pop

fallstoclimb

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #33 on: July 09, 2014, 08:24:21 AM »
If you do go with a hosting site like Bluehost:  do you actually need to pay for things like site backup pro (do they not backup without this??) or domain privacy protection?  I do want to stay anonymous, I think....but this worked out to be $100/year.  I have so little faith in my ability to monetize (although of course I am interested in it) that I don't know if I can "make up" this money, and it seemed un-Mustachian to pay for a hobby I could do for free.  But I do want to do this right.
I'd pay for the regular services and none of the extras. 

Domain privacy is a feature of domain registration, which you can choose to do with Bluehost or with any other domain-name registrar.  (It's just more convenient when the domain name registration and hosting are consolidated with the same company-- and more risky.)  I think just about every registrar charges for privacy "because they can".

Here's a thought about registration:  why do you want to be private?  Depending on your blogging subject, you may want to be well-known as a public figure.  In that case privacy may be redundant-- or you could rent a post office box.  If someone wants to find out who you are for a lawsuit or a DMCA takedown, registration privacy is no protection.

Finally:  are you starting a blog as entertainment or as a paying hobby?  If it's "entertainment" then spend the money out of your entertainment budget.  If it's a paying hobby then the startup costs will keep you motivated (and hold you accountable) to put the effort into building the revenue stream.

Thanks.  It's good to know I don't need the site backup and a little research shows there are multiple ways to do that anyway.

As far as being anonymous, I mostly don't want to be limited in what I say due to concerns of what a future potential employer (or my big brother current employer) might think.  However it looks like if I don't purchase the privacy, it's not like my blog will come up if someone googles my name -- they'll have to specifically do a whois on the site, correct?  If that's the case, I'm not sure I care, at least not unless my blog gets some traffic.

vespito

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #34 on: July 09, 2014, 01:30:47 PM »

You're not going to "start a free blog and see how it develops".  You're going to research your chosen topic and keywords and audience and other parameters.  Then when you launch your blog, you're going to deliberately hunt down and build the audience.

+1 to this.  I did start a blog just to see how it develops.  It didn't.  If you are just interested in learning about blogging this is fine, but if you want to actually develop readers (and income) Nords, as usual, has the right take on it.

Right now I am working on a new blog.  The only thing I am working on is content.  I have a very specific audience in mind.  I am using a basic text editor - only when I have specific content that shines on its own will I worry about design, etc.

And to answer the original questions - I use Wordpress,  Dreamhost (not sure if they still do referrals; they may offer free hosting to bona fide non-profits), and the Thesis theme.  I have also experimented with Perch - more basic than wordpress but pretty effective.

Nords

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #35 on: July 14, 2014, 06:21:53 PM »
As far as being anonymous, I mostly don't want to be limited in what I say due to concerns of what a future potential employer (or my big brother current employer) might think.  However it looks like if I don't purchase the privacy, it's not like my blog will come up if someone googles my name -- they'll have to specifically do a whois on the site, correct?  If that's the case, I'm not sure I care, at least not unless my blog gets some traffic.
That's correct-- your name will only become public if someone's checking the domain registration.  Of course if your subject matter goes viral then they'll probably announce that registration on a public website.

You could always put a humorous disclaimer in your post to say that these are your own opinions and do not reflect the policies of your employer.  But perhaps if an employer objects to your independent thinking, then it's better to find another employer rather than be an anonymous blogger.

C. K.

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #36 on: July 15, 2014, 02:22:27 PM »
As far as being anonymous, I mostly don't want to be limited in what I say due to concerns of what a future potential employer (or my big brother current employer) might think.  However it looks like if I don't purchase the privacy, it's not like my blog will come up if someone googles my name -- they'll have to specifically do a whois on the site, correct?  If that's the case, I'm not sure I care, at least not unless my blog gets some traffic.
That's correct-- your name will only become public if someone's checking the domain registration.  Of course if your subject matter goes viral then they'll probably announce that registration on a public website.


You can pay your domain host extra for protecting the privacy of your domain registration. When people search for it, they'll get instead the name, number etc. of the company that protects your privacy.

kittrad

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #37 on: December 31, 2014, 01:04:38 PM »
Hi CK, quick one please. So which scenarios for example for the hosting company to give the owners details forcibly?

Newtonium

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #38 on: January 01, 2015, 09:06:50 AM »
1. Wordpress on a netfirms.ca account. Netfirms had the cheapest .ca registation (among other free features). I did some website stuff in jr high and university, but mostly self taught. If you have some computer knowledge and troubleshooting ability then the open source nature means someone had already figured out just about any problem I came across.

2. $12/yr for .ca, $9 for .com. Hosting cost $250 for 3 yrs I think. One hosting account with networked WP means I run 5 different sites (each with their own domain) from one hosting account.

3. The newer one (where we're actually going for passive income) is four months old, and we're up to almost $1/month with google adwords. Still low traffic, less than 500 per month. Other sites serve as online portfolios which have earned low thousands this year from customers liking our work and hiring us. My newest is mostly blogging business ideas I find interesting, almost as a way of organizing thoughts, but I'm finishing up an ebook which I'm hoping works well in my niche. Take a look http://www.daedaluslabyrinth.ca/jewellery-resources/craft-show-survival-guide/

Andrew

deltabelle

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #39 on: January 01, 2015, 09:29:11 AM »
I started blogging 7 years ago at Blogger, but switched to Wordpress.  I wish I had started at WP.

I pay $9.95 a month for hosting. 

A good month can be around $500, it just really varies depending on if I do a few sponsored posts each month, etc.  I do have AdSense and private advertising in my sidebars and posts as well.  I've tried affiliate links, but they've never done well for me.

I don't have a niche blog and I didn't start out blogging with the intention of making money.  It was 4 years into blogging before I ever saw a dime. 

budgetjones

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Re: Do you have a blog? Here are some questions. :)
« Reply #40 on: January 01, 2015, 10:54:19 AM »
Hi,

1. I use wordpress as a CRM on my own domain and hosting.
2. Domain and hosting cost me around $100/year
3. I haven't monetized it yet. I was thinking about signing up to be an affiliate to vitacost.com as it fits my niche of health and wellness. In the sign up they ask for your ss# as they do it through Rakuten linkshare. This is holding me back right now. Have any of you had experience with linkshare and giving your deets for affiiate $?