Hosting Site: Expense: $95.15 (included Domain name, privacy, and web security purchases)

I switched to self -hosting So obviously I have to make a post about how to do it! I’ve been on WordPress’ free plan for about a year and a half learning the ins and outs of the blog world. To be honest, I never really had a plan for blogging long term and thought I’d run out of ideas and materials just a few months in. I think it was good to do the free plan on WP so I could learn about blogging without the pressures of trying to make money to make up the loss of spending money on a hosting site. I could discover my place in the blogging community and my process for writing in a very laid back way.

I researched on blogs, talked to other bloggers in the community, and did comparisons on different hosting sites. I heard mixed reviews for BlueHost and great reviews for SiteGround so that’s where I’m ending up. You might decide on a different site based off of your research, not everyone’s experience will be your experience.

Domain Name/URL:

The process was simple since I just stuck with my original WP url name (a common suggestion so that readers don’t get confused with a new name and you lose your following) which happened to still be available. At this point I want to be blogging for the next few year so I picked the plan that made financial sense to me for that purpose and can revalue when the 3 years is up. SiteGround also transferred my content over from my previous site. I was also happy with their support team since I accidentally purchased a second transferred in addition to the free one but was thankfully refunded.

Themes: $41

I thought I would be able to just choose a theme from wordpress that I wouldn’t have to invest money in yet. Unfortunately, the options were slim and not what I was looking for. Just in case, I had done research for WP themes and decided to check out the site pipdig that was recommended. Upon further research, I went for a more budget friendly option and choose a theme from ThemeForest .

Plugins:

From there I installed and activated plugins such as JetPack, Yoast SEO, Velvet Blue Update URLs, and Google Analytics. I’m still figuring out if I need Google Analytics since JetPack seems to also offer blog stats. I put a few posts on the schedule and tried out Yoast SEO – I kinda hate the hassle it requires so I’m curious to see if it really does help my posts get noticed. Velvet Blue Update URLs is amazing if you’re switching from WordPresscom to org because it will change all your links so your audience from dotcom should hopefully get redirected to your new org site. This was an alternative from a paid expense wordpress offers its users.

HTML add ins:

I was a little stressed when I realized I had to do some coding of my own so first thing you need to know is: Theme>Editor>Header. That’s where most of your coding will go such as claiming your site on google webmaster and pinterest and applying for google adsense and similar.

Migrate Followers:

I was super happy to learn there was a way for me to transfer my dotcom followers over to my new site. A little bummed to find out stats can’t be transferred over as well but I’m hoping my new marketing strategy will quickly build that back up.

Explore Your Site:

Some of it will definitely be trial and error and just getting comfortable with the new dashboard. Research and read articles from other bloggers when you get a little lost.