GOING SELF-HOSTED 101
About a month a go, i finally took the plunge of going self hosted with my blog and officially moved from beauty762.wordpress.com to beaulife.org. As i know how overwhelming this change can be for so many, i decided to share with you all my experience with going self hosted and provide you with all the information I can in order to hopefully make this process easier for any of you considering going self -hosted in the future!
WHY I WENT SELF-HOSTED
I had been contemplating going self hosted with my blog for the longest time, but the cost and fear of change held me back; however, i knew that if i wanted to monetize my site and hopefully turn this hobby of blogging in to a job, i had to take this leap. The wordpress.com site was quickly becoming too limiting for me as I wanted to be able to use plugins and programs like Google Analytics and overall have more control and freedom with my blog.
The biggest dilemma that comes with going self-hosted (aside from choosing a domain name) is choosing what hosting platform to go with. After hearing great reviews from many of my fellow bloggers (and doing a little bit of my own research) about how affordable Siteground is and how amazing their customer service is, I was sold and knew that this is the hosting platform I would be going with!
MY EXPERIENCE WITH SITEGROUND
I decided to go with Siteground’s StartUp option which is $3.95 per month; however, as I was going for the 2 year plan- after adding everything up such as the domain name and SG Site Scanner-it came up to $144.5 which might seem like a lot but considering it’s a 2 year plan and comparing it to its competitor Bluehost’s pricing, I believe it’s a pretty good deal! What I love about Siteground is their amazing 24/7 live chat service because whenever I had any questions or was confused about something, there support team would be right there to help me out. As soon as I had bought my new domain, I told them to transfer my old site to the new domain and this took around 24 hours after which my new self hosted site was up and ready to go. Overall, I was glad that I had decided to go with Siteground because after hearing stories from some bloggers about how stressful their ‘going self hosted’ process was, I was quite surprised at how easy and hassle-free Siteground made this move for me.
CHOOSING THE THEME
The first thing I did once my site was set up was choose a theme. I went for a free one but you can of course buy a theme-they have some amazing ones up at pipdig that you can check out.
TRANSFERRING FOLLOWERS & STATS
As soon as my site was up, I noticed that everything was there except for my followers and stats but don’t worry, it is super easy to transfer them! You can migrate your followers in less than a minute following the steps in this article. As for the stats, I definitely had to do a bit of research to figure out how to transfer them but it is very simple to do as well! Simply go to the WordPress Forums and ‘add a new topic’. Just write down that you need your stats transferred from your old website to the new one and in the tag section, write ‘modlook’. A WordPress support person will reply to you confirming your request and voila- all your stats are now transferred to the new site! Also, keep in mind that the ‘likes’ you have gotten on your posts will not get transferred to the new site.
WILL YOU BE ABLE TO USE THE WORDPRESS FEATURES ON THE NEW SITE?
One of my biggest worries with going self hosted was that I will not be able to use the WordPress features that I had grown so accustomed to, especially the reader section where I share my new content and get to see content from all the bloggers that I follow- but I am so glad that this was not the case. You simply need to activate the ‘Jetpack’ plugin and then they will ask you if you would like to connect your new blog to WordPress and once you do, all the WordPress features will now be available for you to use. One thing; however, that I noticed was that the WordPress follow button was no longer appearing on my site anymore and so I quickly googled and found this article that explains exactly how you can add one. One downside with having a self hosted site is that your blogposts will no longer appear in the search section of WordPress which I was kind off bummed about because that is where many readers potentially find your blog, read them and perhaps even give you a follow but oh well!
HOW I FEEL AFTER GOING SELF-HOSTED
I am very happy that I took the leap to go self hosted. Not only do I have access to all these amazing plugins such as Jetpack and Yoast but I can now start monetizing my site. One of the things I love is that I am now able to use Google Analytics which provides me with crucial information about my blog stats such as my unique monthly visitors and demographics-information that brands often need when they want to work with you. I have noticed; however, that my views have fell a little after going self-hosted and the rate at which I am now gaining followers has fell significantly which I will not lie got me quite frustrated but taking in all the benefits of the move, I believe this is just a small hurdle.
I am aware this was quite a lengthy post but I really wanted to provide you guys with as much information as I could on going self-hosted. I really hope this helped any of you who are considering going self-hosted and trust me, it is not as scary as it sounds! I was very surprised by how easily everything worked which is hugely due to me using Siteground and of course their amazing customer service!
If you have any other questions, feel free to leave them in the comments and I will be more than happy to answer them!
THANK YOU FOR READING! xx
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