Free Hosted Blog vs. Self-Hosted Blog – Be Careful Which One You Choose

What’s the difference between having a free hosted blog such as blogspot.com and a self-hosted blog?

There are dozens of places online where you can get a blog for free on the internet. The main problem with these blogging websites is that you have absolutely no control over them. I understand that a lot of people starting out in blogging / internet marketing may not have much money to invest in the initial stages, however starting your online business with a free hosted website is a huge mistake!

First of all, when your blog is hosted on a freebie web host, a lot of people don’t take you
seriously and may not trust you very much. With all the scamming going on today in the internet, it’s no surprise that people have their guard up more than ever. The vast majority of people wouldn’t even consider buying a product or service from a free hosted blog that isn’t professional looking.  Sure, it may be nice to set up a free site for friends and family members to share pictures or something, but when it comes to dealing with customers, the trust issue is definitely important. You have to make a good first impression if you want to gain your visitors’ trust!

Not only is trust a factor, there is also the fact that you have no control what so ever regarding what happens with your blog and/or its content. Since you don’t own the server that your blog is hosted on, there is always the possibility that it could be deleted without any explanation at all. There is really no way to back up your full blog with free web hosts either. If something happens where all your content is deleted, there’s a good chance you’ll never get it back!

There is also the credibility issue. If you want to have a good online presence, using a free blogging service is not a good place to start. I don’t know about you, but if I saw someone’s website on a free hosted blog site such as premiumrealtyteam.blogspot.com and they were saying they are an expert in that niche, I would DEFINITELY think twice before I purchased anything.  Now if they had their blog hosted on their own domain such as PremiumRealtyTeam.com  or something similar, and used a nice custom WordPress theme,  I’d be MUCH more likely to listen to what they have to say.

A domain name costs less than $10 per year, and you can get a good shared hosting account for only $7 to $10 per month. So why wouldn’t an “expert” have their own website? Seems sketchy to me, and it usually is. People take notice to these sorts of things. You must take your online business seriously, and branding yourself like this is not a good way to get started. When looking for a paid webhost, it’s best to find one that offers unlimited add-on domains. This way you can host as many new blogs as you want,  on the same hosting account at no extra charge. The only exception is the price of the domain name itself. It simply makes sense to go with paid hosting services if you are even the slightest bit serious about your online business.

The best Hosting Service that allows unlimited add-on domains is Host Gator . Many bloggers use Host Gator as their main webhost.  This is the one that we recommend 100%.

For domain names, we only use Name Cheap now because of their great customer service, low prices, and FREE whois guard service for each domain you register.

So, if your blog’s goal is to promote your products, services, or overall business, you should definitely go with your own brandable domain name along with a paid hosting account.  If you just want to blog for fun, and aren’t worried about building your business, or making money blogging, then a free hosted blog might be okay.

What are your thoughts on this?  I’d love to hear them below…

Tagged

About Ben C.

Ben is the co-founder of ProfitBlog.com and a regular writer and contributor to the site. He has been involved in internet marketing since 2005, and has created many profitable websites in several different niche markets. While many of his sites are still consistently making money, (and a few have been sold off for a nice payday), he's recently grown a passion for sharing his knowledge of online marketing with others through his various training courses, as well as through blogging. You can learn more about Ben and his story by Clicking Here

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22 thoughts on “Free Hosted Blog vs. Self-Hosted Blog – Be Careful Which One You Choose

  1. Pingback: Free Hosted Blog vs. Self-Hosted Blog – Be Careful Which One You Choose « profitblogcom

  2. Nina c.

    I don’t think there is anything wrong with having a free site in the beginning and then buying it later. I had a free one and I’m still very successful

    Reply
    • Josh

      Sure, free sites are a great way to get your feet wet and see if your site’s going to work without putting any money on the line but I think what Ben was saying is that if you’re planning on it being a successful site then you’re better off just buying the domain and hosting to save the work of having to move it later on. Plus you’re going to always have a lot more control over your content and not have to worry about losing it all if the free site you’re on ends up deleting your account or changing their terms of service. There’s always something to be said about hard work and persistence though and I’m sure that’s what’s helped you to become successful even while starting with a free hosted site.

      Reply
  3. Meg

    If you’d like to invest a good amount of time into your site or blog then you mine as well opt for self hosted. It’s a neat feeling to know you have your own piece of the web and it allows you to do whatever you want. Plus, hosting is insanely cheap these days.

    Free blog hosts like Blogger are good if you’re just looking to mess around with the whole blogging thing first or if you don’t really intend on expand upon your site/blog through time.

    Reply
  4. free blogspot templates

    I myself use Blogspot for all blogs .
    If you are a newbie like me ,free hosted blog such as Blogspot is a good choice .You don’t need to invest money for a host ,bandwidth and don’t need to worry about installation ,errors,hackers…when you start .You can make money with $0 investment .
    When you have income from your free blog ,I think it’s the time for buying a host .

    Reply
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  6. Roseli A. Bakar

    Like many other bloggers, I started blogging with blogspot blogs. I have since move to wordpress.org which have much more features.

    There’s nothing wrong with using a free hosted blog but if you want to take your blogging to next step, go for self hosted wordpress blog :)

    Reply
    • Ben Post author

      I agree 100% The amount of customization options for WordPress is amazing. There are a ton of cool new features, and it’s only getting better every day.

      Reply
    • Ben Post author

      I’d personally stay away from dreamhost due to other people i know having many issues with them… I used to use Bluehost a lot, but they didnt work out very well with me either. That’s the main reason you will see us all siding with Hostgator here at Profit Blog. Hostgator has been nothing but awesome from the start. If you get a chance, I’d switch to HG (just my personal opinion)…

      Reply
  7. Pingback: Sunday Coffee with Ana: DoFollow, NoFollow and More

  8. Lara Sterling

    Hmmmm…. This is interesting. I was just put off by Word Press because they make it so hard to set up, whereas blogger is so simple. But this is definitely something I should look into.

    Best,
    Lara

    Reply
    • Ben Post author

      Hi Lara, actually since the release of WordPress 3.1, it has gotten much easier to set up, as well as customize. In fact, if you have your own hosting account, installing wordpress is usually a 1-click install within your admin panel. Setting up the WordPress 3.1 settings are also very simple too. If you do decide to hop the fence, and use WordPress, we offer a really good course that you may be interested in. It goes over every aspect of setting up WordPress 3.1 (even for a total newbie). Here’s the link: http://www.profitblog.com/how-to-use-wordpress/

      Reply
  9. Pingback: 10 Basic Blogging Tips for Newbie Bloggers — ProfitBlog.com

  10. Pingback: A Bloggers Guide to Choosing your Domain Name — Learn How to Blog & Ways to Make Money Blogging!

  11. Venkat

    Hi Ben, I’m interested in these kind of discussions and my opinions are very closely matching with yours. I wrote an article some time back on using cheap, free and paid hosting pointing merits and demerits in each. What I actually found was blogs on paid hosts worked we because of the uptime and these days most of the paid hosting sites are offering script installers like Softaculous which makes installing and removing various CMS and blog scripts very easy.

    Coming to comparison between Blogger and WordPress, my vote is for WordPress because of being SEO-friendly and more importantly, it is way much customizable compared to blogger.

    Reply
  12. Dipendra@Givemegoal

    There used to be days where blogspot.com blogs used to get good ranking but now I guess subdomains may not get good search engine priority. Blogspot used to dominate search engines in many keywords but now I would choose my own domain name.

    Reply
  13. Tushar

    I had using blogger for my blog platform in the previous year. But finally I shifted to the paid self hosted wordpress website and now I can add any type of custome function in it.

    Reply
  14. Pingback: Want to Test the Waters Before You Start a Self-Hosted Blog? — ProfitBlog.com - Learn How to Blog & Ways to Make Money Blogging!

  15. plr adhd

    With havin so much content and articles do you ever run into
    any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement?
    My blog has a lot of unique content I’ve either written myself or outsourced but it appears a lot of it is popping it up all over the web without my permission. Do you know any ways to help reduce content from being ripped off? I’d really
    appreciate it.

    Reply

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