For the least a hassle you can start will a fully supported platform and a very unique domain for $1,300 per year. We break down the various options we have used over the last eight years.
Anyone looking to start a blog need to have three things clear in their mind.
1. What are they going to blog about?
2. How much time can they dedicate to the new blog?
3. How much money can they invest into the new blog?
It is also recommended to be very clear on why you are starting the new blog.
I sometimes hear the question and read it in certain facebook groups: “If you were starting out today with nothing to invest but time into your online business, what would you do?”
The answer is simple, I wouldn’t start the online business! Most don’t like to hear that, but if you are serious about your business you need to get yourself into a position where you can invest some cash, even if it is just for quality hosting and a personalised domain.
With this blog post I am concentrating on the actual costs – How much does it cost to start a blog that becomes a fully-fledged online business?
1. Absolute Necessities
A Personalised domain $5-50 (Annual Cost)
This is essential, there is little to no excuse for not owning a quality vanity domain. You will find that .com’s are fairly cheap with extensions like .academy being around the $40-50 mark per year.
Hosting & Blogging Platform $60 – $1,500 (Annual Cost)
You can source your hosing and then install a free platform or buy a platform that includes hosting.
Shared Hosting – Great for Starting
When I started online business I spent a lot of time learning how to program and write a blog. For Website hosting I went with WebsitePalace and I am still using them today! Their hosting starts from $4.99 per month with options for discount it a multi-year agreement is selected.
When purchasing hosting, your blog will sit on a shared server. It is recommended to have your hosting sitting in the country you are basing your business, or as close as possible.
If your business is based in the UK and your hosting provider is based on the west coast of America, your website could suffer latency.
When picking hosting, you will get asked Windows or Linux – Pick Linux!
When your website matures, it is recommended that you get a dedicated server. For one of our other online businesses, we pay $150 per month for a dedicated hosting server.
Platforms for Hosting
We strongly recommend that you install wordpress as your platform of choice if you are looking at a free platform. There are many SEO plugins that can make the platform rank very high in google.
WordPress Premium Themes $100 (One Off)
We have run another business with DIY Thesis, this is excellent for putting the skills into your hands to customise your site. Genesis is another great platform for people looking to create beautiful customisable websites with a lot of SEO power to boot.
A word of warning, a decent level of technical skills are needed to create great sites. If you can deal with a little coding, then this is a great choice.
Platform & Hosting Combined
SquareSpace $10+ per month
This is a great place to build stunning websites without any coding required. You can even build your site without even paying for it. Once it is complete you can publish and turn your trial subscription into a paid one.
If you have an offline business and are not depending on driving revenue via this site, then this is a possible solution.
We use it for a content business where we send possible clients to, after we have spoken to them. We never expect it to be found in google, but simply to look great when we refer people to the site.
It has decent support and the speed you can build a site means that for an offline business like a coffee shop, hairdresser or personal site to promote professional work it is great.
Mainly because it incorporates imagery excellently.
PodcastWebsites.com $99 per month
We are paying over $1,000 per year for this actual blog at the moment. Why are we paying this when we could create it all ourselves?
The hassle of paying for website hosting, podcast hosting, customisation and supporting a website of this size is time consuming.
This is the minimum needed to get you started, we have also spent thousands on bespoke website development. This is not needed for beginners. I hope this gives you an idea for what you are getting yourself in for!!