I talk quite a bit about how important it is to self host your blog and I sincerely believe that self hosted is the way to go. Today, I wanted to share three things that have changed since I began self hosting my blog a bit over a year ago. Definitely the most important thing that has changed is that I’ve learned a little bit (emphasis on little) about coding and html and I understand at a very basic level how my blog works.
- A more user friendly blog. Since I went self hosted, I discovered the world of plugins. Plugins are basically things you can add to your blog to do cool things like allow people to share their latest post when they comment (CommentLuv), keep spam away (Akismet), and so much more! I’ve shared some plugins that I think everyone should use (including the ONE I think every blogger should use without a doubt) and on wordpress at least, you can only take advantage of plugins if you are self hosted.
- A stronger sense of purpose. I’m not sure exactly why this is, but since I began self hosting my blog, I’ve had a great sense of purpose with the blog and more focus. I think it’s because when I switched to self hosted, I did the transition myself (details here) and just felt a greater sense of ownership over my blog. I feel like that I have a clearer direction for my blog and more focused goals. I also am really taking advantage of using my editorial calendar (I use coschedule – read more about it here) and it’s made an immense difference in my blogging!
- An opportunity to make a little money. I’ve talked about this in some other posts (and now do income reports each month), but self hosting does open you up to displaying ads and accepting other sponsored opportunities. I’m very thoughtful with my strategy in terms of what I will commit to in order to make a bit of money with the blog. I’ve found that I really enjoy sharing products that I love and the ability to become an affiliate for a few of those products has been a fun way to create a little extra income. I never set out to make money blogging but since I began spending a decent amount of money on the blog, I started to seek ways to recoup some of my expenses and self hosting has allowed me to do that.
I am so grateful that I decided to self host and if I had to do it all again, I would’ve started self hosting from day one. Owning your blog and your content is such a benefit and I really do encourage bloggers to seriously consider self hosting.
Are you self hosted? Why or why not?