The Internet has removed unnecessary middlemen from almost every field and brought more transparency to this world. While in the pre-internet era, everyone was bound to listen and read the words (if) originating from a single source, post-internet freedom has prevailed. Decades after internet simplified itself for the masses, today there are several authentic sources available to verify any information or news. Today, instead of television and newspaper, blogs and vlogs have become a major source of information for the common man.
This article will deal particularly with the blog, the simplest information sharing platform in today’s world.
All you have to do is go through this article sequentially, to start your own blog in minutes.Article Content
- A Brief History of Blogging
- Why Should YOU Start a Blog?
- Why Should YOU not Start a Blog?
- Blog as a Hobby or as a Business?
- Decide Your Niche
- Own Domain versus a Subdomain
- Subdomain limitations
- The Three Components
- From Theory to Applications
- Fastcomet Hosting Benefits
- Content Management System
- WordPress Plugins
A Brief History of Blogging
Expessing own thoughts on the web can be dated back to 1994 when Justin Hall an undergrad created his very own web address. This was https://links.net. Justin used to collect and share the website links he found interesting while he surfed the internet. At that time the term blog was not coined, it was just a personal page of Justin.
Later, in 1997, John Barger coined the term weblog. This term was created to reflect the process of “logging the internet” as he browsed. In 1999 the term weblog was truncated as blog by the programmer Peter Merholz.
There has been a drastic change in the way a blog was used to be seen in the 20th century. Today, blogging has become a very lucrative and competitive business. Professional bloggers consider their articles as an intellectual property.⇯
Why Should YOU Start Your Own Blog?
A blog is no longer just a place to write down your thoughts. It has evolved into a very rewarding business with minimum investment.
It does not matter whether you are good at writing or not, you can always start a blog, Do you remember the time when you were not good at driving? You mastered driving only by failing more and practising more. Same goes with blogging as well. All you need to know the rules of blogging just as you learnt the rules of gears, accelerator and brakes before driving.
A blog is your own personal space on the internet, like your room in the entire house.
If you have a desire to build something of your own, I bet your blog will give you that satisfaction. If you want to earn money, your blog will help to achieve that goal. If you just want to share your own thoughts and find facebook, twitter et cetera too intruding, even then, a blog can be your best bet.
In short, a blog will not only build you as a person but it will take care of your finances as well.⇯
Why Should YOU not Start a Blog?
While there are several reasons to start a blog, there are some reasons you should never attempt to start a blog. These are
- You are in the womb
- You are a Zombie
- You are dead
Hey baby! You really have no clue what’s going on outside here. It’s better to take more than enough time inside the womb. It’s a lot of circus going on in the world.
Man! all you need is human blood, not the name, money or satisfaction. Don’t waste another domain name. Grab someone’s neck, pierce your teeth and feel the bloody taste.
In case you are dead you don’t need any name, fame or money. In fact, as per the stories my nanny used to tell me, you can get whatever you want. Why waste a domain name?
There is no single reason you should not start your own blog in this 21st century.⇯
Should you start a blog as a hobby or as a business?
It doesn’t matter whether you start a blog as a hobby or a business, eventually one day it will shift to money-making platform. It will happen because every professional blog today, was once started as a hobby only.
Decide Your Niche
The term niche simply means a specific field.
Before starting to think about a blog, you have to know your own specific field or sub-field or anything (any-any thing) which you personally find interesting.
No, this doesn’t come on the surface just by thinking. You need to write it down. Take your time, write down some 20-30, 50 or 100 things that interest you. Then start filtering the one that interests you the most.
This is the one, that is going to be your niche in the blogging field.
Of course you can start a multi-niche blog as well.
Own Domain versus a Subdomain
A blog can be hosted either on a subdomain or own domain. A subdomain is free while you have to pay a fee to own a domain. WordPress.com and blogger.com are the most popular blog subdomain providers.
If you are starting a blog as just a hobby and have no experience regarding maintaining a blog, it’s advisable to get your hands dirty on a subdomain or you can own a domain right away and keep on learning as you face difficulties.
Remember, Google is your savior.
I highly recommend purchasing your own domain because a subdomain comes with lots of limitations and you will not learn anything about maintaining a blog.
- You never own it
- You can’t provide your own codes
- You can’t monetize
- Your efforts are not taken seriously
- You don’t learn anything
A blog is a place on the internet which you should feel like your own property. With a subdomain, you can never feel like that. You will always see the url as yourname.wordpress.com or yourname.blogger.com. Do you see that wordpress.com and the blogger.com at the end of the url. This url is the property of WordPress and blogger, not yours and you can feel it. The subdomain provider at any point of time may change any of its terms and you have to abide by it, just because you don’t own it.
A blog should not just be filled up with information for the users. It should be attractive as well. The reader should feel good as he goes through your content. This can only happen when you provide your own code to the themes, PHP file or in the plugins. The subdomain will never let you edit any of these. You are forced to use the things as is which ultimately doesn’t make your blog stand anywhere near the owned ones.
Monetizing means earning revenue from your blog. There are several ad networks which give you the opportunity to place their ads and you can earn revenue when a visitor sees or clicks the ad. With subdomain monetization with an ad is either not possible or limited, exempli gratia wordpress.com does not allow you to place the ads while blogger provides this feature but with limitations.
Yes, I understand that you have put all that hard work to create that informative blog but put yourself in the shoes of the visitor, on the google search. If you see several results as a yourname.com and a one with yourname.wordpress.com, which one you will click from the search results. Of course, there are exceptions with the visitors as well. There are some who are actually seeking the answer and there are the ones who just want a quick answer. The quick ones will always prefer the yourname.com.
The search engines usually give preference to the yourname.com instead of yourname.wordpress.com.
If you want to have a blog in a niche, which is quite popular and have several experts around the world, don’t waste your efforts with a subdomain. Of course, if your niche does not have many experts worldwide and you really want to share just the information to help the visitors, a subdomain is good for that.
If you host your blog on a subdomain you don’t know what’s happening behind the scene. You don’t know about hosting, SEO, cache, security, coding nothing. All you know is that you have an article and you have to post it.
As now, the importance of the own domain is discussed, the next section elaborates the process of having your own blog.
The Three Components
There are three components which make the blog your own property. You have to buy these components. It’s advisable to buy all these three from the same provider to have a smooth blogging experience.
- Web Hosting
- Email Hosting
A domain is the yourname.com, org, net.
First decide, in which field (niche) you want to establish your blog. Write down some names which you think will reflect your work. You can always go ahead with just your own name. Then you have to search for this domain availability on the domain provider’s website. If you got your preferred domain, great, if not try to change the suffix (.com, .net.) or find a replacement for your preferred name.
Hosting reflects to the storage of your blog. You buy a storage place on the server of your hosting provider. The servers should be responsive and capable enough to give your visitors a smooth experience. Your host should also provide good security for your blog.
Will you take a professional blog seriously which sends you email from Gmail or Yahoo. No, you won’t. Thus, it is important to buy an email hosting as well. Email host provides you email like [email protected] or [email protected]
Every provider offers you all the three components
From Theory to Applications
Here comes the difficult part, because there are several providers claiming that their services are the best in the world. Choose the best provider, which can offer you all the components in lesser price with an awesome blogging experience and great support.
Fastcomet Hosting Benefits
Fastcomet has grown as the best service provider for all the three components. Below are the reasons why you should buy the services offered by FastComet.
- Lesser expensive hosting plans
- Renewal Price remains the Same
- Free Domain for life
- Free unlimited Email accounts
- Free SSL
- Free blog Migration
- SSD with RAID 10 configuration
- Unmetered Traffic
- CDN Caching
- Very helpful support
FastComet provides quite lesser expensive plans than its competitors. The starter plan is called StartSmart which is $2.95/month. It’s advisable to choose the three-year plan of StartSmart, which is quite discounted. You save a lot in the three-year plan.
Every web host out there provides plans at lesser price rates for the first year, later when you renew the plan they ask you for more. It’s almost a convention with every host. FastComet stands out from the money-hungry hosts by renewing at the same price you purchased the first time. There is no change in the price.
When you buy a hosting plan with FastComet, you get your preferred domain for free. As long as you use the FastComet hosting, you don’t have to pay for the domain.
Yes, you read it right. FastComet provides you unlimited email accounts with your purchased hosting plan. Go ahead, create the email accounts you actually require without thinking about the cost limitation.
Google has announced that the websites which use SSL will get preference in its results. Thus, it’s important to install an SSL certificate on your blog if you don’t want to be penalized by Google.
With FastComet you don’t have to buy an SSL certificate for your website. It’s added as an addon when you buy the hosting plan.
Bloggers migrate from one host to another to get better services. Blog migration can be quite daunting to many bloggers. If you can’t do it yourself there are services which charge a huge amount.
Here is a piece of good news for the bloggers. If you already have a blog and hosting it with an expensive host, FastComet support will migrate your domain and hosting both for free.
All your blog, within minutes, is migrated to FastComet by the technical team. FastComet team is very helpful as well.
FastComet uses Solid State Drive (SSD) to store its user’s data. SSD’s are different from the commonly used electromechanical drives which contain spinning disk and read-write heads. SSD’s ar more resilient to physical shock, run silently, have quicker access time and lower latency. Thus, your blog is more secure and responsive as compared to other hosts.
FastComet also uses the redundant RAID 10 configuration. Which means your data is stored in more than one location. So, your data is more safe with FastComet.
Other hosts always put a cap on your monthly traffic. With FastComet you will never have to worry about the increasing traffic on your blog. FastComet provides unmetered traffic with its hosting plan. So, put your best efforts to increase the traffic without a requirement to upgrade just because of your increased traffic.
A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a network of servers located in the different parts of the world containing similar data. If your blog uses CDN, when a visitor accesses your blog, the contents will be served from the nearest location. This way your website loads faster. Using CDN means using lesser bandwidth of the host because a CDN also serves the contents from its cache.
FastComet uses Cloudflare CDN network thus your blog is served from the closest server which results in fast page load speed.
I have seen support staffs of other host providers. All they are doing is trying to sell their services. All they want is you to buy their plans.
But FastComet support truly deserves appreciation. They actually want to know your requirements. They help you. The best part, they won’t jerk you around with unnecessary information. They seem to be highly trained.
This goes to both the sales and the technical team.
See a comparison with other hosting services.
Don’t believe me? Go to FastComet, there in the right-hand bottom, chat window will be opened by one of the sales support staff. Just shoot your questions.
Also, the resolution of your sales and technical queries is quite quick and to the point.
Content Management System
A content management system is a software which helps you create, edit, publish and organize your content for the blog. You need to install this software in order to proceed with your blogging experience. WordPress, Drupal, Joomla are quite famous CMS softwares.
Just to inform you that WordPress is the most popular and user-friendly CMS among bloggers. It is very simple to use. Currently, more than 60% CMS users prefer WordPress to other CMS. The Best part, it’s free.
Thus as soon as you get a domain and hosting, install the WordPress to get a smooth blogger’s life.
FastComet offers WordPress CMS from its CPanel. Login to your CPanel and install it from there.
A theme provides decoration and various interfaces to the website. There are more than 5000 free themes in the WordPress to get you started. There are some well known paid themes as well e.g. studiopress is known to offer the most aesthetic themes for WordPress.
Before moving ahead it’s important to know about the WordPress plugins.
A plugin is a small utility software targeted for a special activity. WordPress has a huge resource of plugins both free and paid. WordPress has more than 50, 000 plugins in its store.
Note: Using too many plugins may slow down your blog, so use only the ones which actually require.
Buying a property is not that difficult, keeping away the trespassers is. You must have read about the hacked websites, didn’t you?
Your blog is your own property and you have to make sure that it is always safe from the evil eyes. Thus, make sure that you first check all the security options On before publishing your first post.
- Two-factor authentication
- FastComet is the best host provider for your blog because it gives you a free domain, free unlimited email accounts, free SSL, free CDN with the best security and quick page load timings.
- WordPress is the best CMS software because it’s free and simple to use. It is the most trusted CMS around the world by the bloggers.
- If you want to monetize, Adsense is your best bet for ad monetization.
Just like you install a firewall in your computer to keep away the unwanted ones, you also need to install a firewall plugin to secure your blog as well.
Wordfence is the best firewall plugin available. Its free features are more than enough to secure your blog.
Passwords are passwords. They get stolen, forgotten or cracked. Thus, it’s important to add one more layer of security to your login page.
There are several plugins which verify the time-based code while you login.
I recommend using Two Factor Authentication plugin for this security.
Although FastComet provides your backup, you must install a backup plugin from your side as well. This plugin will backup all the files and plugins. in case something wrong happens to your blog, you can always restore from this plugin.
Updraft Plus is the best backup plugin for WordPress.
If you have not heard about this term I must tell you that there is a whole niche being developed around this particular term.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process to make your website more friendly to the search engines. SEO providers provide various features to help your content rank better in the search engine results.
Although new, Rank Math is the most features and fastest growing SEO plugin of WordPress.
A blog grows because of its readers. If you have email of your readers it helps you to reach them and inform about the published article, receive feedbacks or do other surveys. You collect their emails by asking them to fill a form.
Form Maker is the highly customizable form plugin for wordpress. ⇯
It’s a good idea to place ads on your website along with the information. Always remember that a reader comes to read your blog, thus, your page should not give him a feeling as if he has entered a market place. Showing minimum ads without intruding the visitor is the best way.
More ads may earn your couple of bucks but eventually will give a bad user interaction which will lead to lesser traffic only. Also, if you place fewer ads and your blog starts getting good traffic then the advertisers will have a bidding competition to place their ads on your website. This will be beneficial for you only.
Currently, Adsense is the best you can have for placing the ads. It offers automatic ad scripts.
Blogging has developed itself into a business today. A blog is seen as one of the properties of a person. It gives you identity, money and freedom to work on your own timings and place. It gives you more peaceful nights than a 9-5 job or other business.