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Advantages & Disadvantages Of Using Free Blogging Platform

May 26, 2017 08:52AM

If you’ve considered starting a blog, you’ve probably run across the term self-hosted blog. Most people will tell you that a self-hosted blog is the way to go, especially if you’re looking to create a professional image. When I said "free Blogging Platform" I mean your DOMAIN, TEMPLATES & Your Contact Email.
But what is a self-hosted blog? And why do you need one if you can just start a blog for free through other services? Below, we explain the details of free and self-hosted blogging platforms, the pros and cons of each, and which one you should choose.
Free Blogging Platform

What is it? A free blogging platform is one that is just that: it’s free to sign up for an account, get a domain (such as www.example.com), and set up your site. You can start your free blog with services like Blogger.com and WordPress.com.
The thing about a free account is that your website’s files are stored—or hosted—on your blogging platform’s servers. While there can be costs involved after the initial set up—which we’ll get to in a moment—this simple fact is what differentiates a free blog from a self-hosted blog.
Pros of a free blog:
There are no initial start-up costs.
Free programs like WordPress and Blogger are easy to set up and maintain without any prior website design knowledge.
Cons of a free blog:
Unless you pay for your own domain, you’ll have the WordPress or Blogger domain tacked onto yours, such as www.example.blogspot.com.
Free blogs appear less professional than self-hosted ones.
You have less control over your blog. For instance, people who self-host their blog with the WordPress software can download plugins to expand their website’s capabilities. A free WordPress blog doesn’t allow this, limiting you to only a few options. CSS functions and theme selections are also limited on free blogging platforms.
You have a limited amount of bandwidth, video time, and memory space.
Free platforms usually limit your advertising options, meaning that it’s harder to make money from your blog.
What types of costs are involved?
A free blog can be completely free if you want it to. However, if you’re looking to get rid of the “Blogger” or “WordPress” in your domain name, you’ll have to buy and assign your own custom domain. These can be as low as $10 depending on what you pick.
You may also choose to buy stock photos, hire a designer, or purchase an upgraded theme, which can all add to the cost of your blog.
Who should use free blogs?
Free blogs are best for people who are just exploring the blogging world or are not very serious about blogging. If you’re just blogging for fun, then by all means start with a free blog!
Self-Hosted Blogging Platform

What is it? A self-hosted blog is one that resides on your own server. Most people, however, pay a third-party to host their blog, which opens them to all the benefits of a self-hosted blog. Sites like iPage (which I recommend), HostGator and Bluehost are among some of the popular companies that provide hosting services. Essentially, these companies rent out digital storage space to users to make running a website possible.
Pros of a self-hosted blog:
You have full control over your blog, including in its layout, search engine optimization, advertising revenue, additional functions, and more.
You can install custom themes to brand your blog.
You have complete access to your backend files, which allows you to make any necessary code changes.
Using a third-party host usually costs only a few dollars per month.
Cons of a self-hosted blog:
It requires an initial investment.
It can be intimidating to new bloggers.
What types of costs are involved?
Like with a free blog, any photos, domain names, and themes that you purchase will add to your costs. With self-hosting, you also have to invest in the cost of using a third-party host. The good news is that hosting can cost under $5 per month. Certain plugins—which is a piece of software that you can install on your site to expand its functionality—can cost money, too.
Who should use self-hosted blogs?
Since self-hosted blogs look more professional and perform more functions, they are best for businesses. They are also ideal for the individual who wants to improve his or her professional appearance and boost the functions available on his or her website.

Disadvantages of using free templates on your blog

Free blog templates are available at an instant with a quick Google search and seeing as blogging is becoming a hugely popular online past-time, many blogger have asked (especially newbies) whether these free templates are something that is worth trying to find, particularly given the choice and time it takes to find a theme that is exactly suiting your blog’s subject and purpose.

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