Why I decided not to switch to a self hosted blog

By Somali K Chakrabarti

 

Over the last few days, I had been deliberating upon moving this blog to a self-hosted platform with wordpress.org. Having read about the merits of a self-hosted blog over a wordpress.com blog, I still wondered if it was worthwhile to switch over.

wordpress_com_vs_wordpress_org

Like most others, I started blogging as a hobby to Scribble and Scrawl my musings.

As the objective was to write occasionally, may be once a week, I didn’t want to be bothered with the technicalities. The free as well as hassle-free wordpress.com platform with all its nice features suited me perfectly well.

Soon, I found myself getting more and more addicted to blogging. My addiction to blogging is probably so apparent that recently a friend bestowed me with the title of a ‘Çlinical blogger‘ :-).

I find blogging an enriching experience in itself as it allows me (and all other bloggers) to put creativity to work.

Now, with the trend of blogging picking up in India, brands are approaching bloggers to increase their outreach on social media, and leverage creativity of bloggers for promotional posts or for oblique marketing.

With all these options, it appears that there might be a long term potential in blogging for brands; that is where I felt that the limitations of wordpress.com may restrict my ability to reach out to a wider set of readers.

For instance, I found that I can not use a slick opt-in form inviting readers to subscribe to the wordpress.com blog. Nor does the wordpress.com blog allow me to upload any e-book, or to manage the email subscribers.

Switching over to a self-hosted blog looked like a viable solution, given that the procedure is not very complex. But then, there is the other side of the coin too!

What happens to the alexa rank or the referral traffic that the blog gets from different communities? These are the metrics generally used to determine the traction on the blog; and we all  know that it takes both time and effort to build traction on a blog.

With all these considerations, I  ruled out the option of moving this blog to a self hosted blog, as of now.

Yet, I could not entirely rule out the option of starting a new self-hosted wordpress blog, though I simply wasn’t motivated enough to start another blog.

But, yesterday when I read about the A to Z Challenge in Ruby Singh’s post, it suddenly occurred to me, what could give a better way to start a new blog, than to take up a challenge right at the onset. Thanks to the motivation derived from Ruby’s post, I decided to come up with a self hosted blog.

Here is my new blog Life11 – Pot Pourri of Life. 

It will be about Life and Lifestyle. Pretty obvious – isn’t it? Please have a look and join me on Life11

It may take me some time to give it a proper shape as I am still in the process of figuring out what plugins to use.

Meanwhile, I need your best wishes to survive through the A to Z Challenge! Hoping that I have not taken up too much on my plate.

 

Have you ever considered moving from wordpress.com to a self hosted blog? If yes, please let share your thoughts on how you went about it!

 

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24 thoughts on “Why I decided not to switch to a self hosted blog

  • April 3, 2015 at 12:34 am
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    I wanted to make a new website. My friend stopped me telling that it’s useless unless there is frequent traffic. He was right and I chose WP.

    Reply
    • April 3, 2015 at 7:53 am
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      True Anoop. WordPress suffices for most of the needs …it’s only when you want to be more experimental you feel the need for a self hosted blog. Still I couldn’t risk shifting this one to self hosted. So I started the new one.

      Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 12:59 am
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    My story resembles yours Somali. I started blogging one and a half years ago as a hobby and, fell in love with it, head over heels, and, became a ‘clinical blogger’. : -D Now, I can’t even think of quitting it! Not even in my dreams.

    I toyed with the idea of a self-hosted blog but the Alexa rank and other metrics…I thought of them and stepped back. It has taken a lot of time and labour to build a sensible rank and I don’t want to lose that.

    Maybe some day..a new blog. But again, I’m too lazy for that : -P

    Wish your new kid all the best… 🙂

    Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 8:00 am
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    Your write and style are truly evolving. Effortless read.

    Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 9:05 am
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    I don’t know why people think so much about those things which are not that much important compared tothe main reasons why they decide to upgrade. Alexa rank is a thing which mostly take a few days to recover and referral traffic is something which smoothly redirect to your new URL immediately after the upgrade. These are things which absolutely need not to worry.

    Reply
    • April 3, 2015 at 9:32 am
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      Thank you Alok. I guess it is more to do with comfort factor regarding use of a self hosted blog. You have made an important point that referral traffic can be redirected. Now with the new blog. I will figure out how quickly I get comfortable with a self hosted blog and the time it takes to build alexa rank. May continue to have both blogs or may think about merging the blogs after recovering the ranks.

      Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 10:30 am
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    Owning a dot com website was part of my bucket list. And it had to be a proper website, so there was no choice for me. Now the most important part with wordpress dot org is that you need to keep google webmaster happy. This will take up most of the part, despite plugins being available.

    I am so very tempted to advise you here. But enjoy the journey of discovery and trial and error, hits and the missues. Be prepared to invest time.

    Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 10:31 am
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    I loved the term coined as clinical blogger :). Well congratulation for your new home….err your new site that is :). Well I moved to my site last year and is a wise decision, just that I lost all my comments as I moved from blogger to WP.
    On the AtoZ challenge ….I’m with you each step… And so are my best wishes.

    Reply
    • April 3, 2015 at 10:37 am
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      Thank you so much dear Shweta. I am yet to familiarize myself with the technicalities of the self hosted blog. Hope to get there soon 🙂 Looking forward to more of your stories on the A to Z Challenge.

      Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 11:22 am
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    Wish you best luck for your new Avatara!!! As said in Bhagvadgita, puraane sharir ko chhodkar naye sharir mein jaanewaali Aatma wohi hain 🙂

    Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 11:46 am
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    Best wishes for your very own blog Life 11 .

    Reply
  • April 3, 2015 at 11:41 pm
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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and this has been on my mind too. So your post really helps.

    Reply
  • April 5, 2015 at 12:40 pm
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    Best wishes for your new blog.
    Moving to a self hosted blog is also on my mind….maybe in near future.

    Reply
    • April 5, 2015 at 12:43 pm
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      Thanks Anita. I am still in the process of sorting out the technicalities and plugins…an uphill learning process ..but hopefully I will get accustomed.

      Reply
  • April 6, 2015 at 12:39 pm
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    I just moved to self hosted 2 weeks ago! I had already purchased a domain for my WordPress. Com blog while I had started blogging. Just by choosing to use the same domain for the self hosted blog, all rankings and metrics still remain same!! All you got to do is purchase a redirect link!

    While i say all these, i am not a techie at all!! But for any help you need its all available online and had to use the 24 hour chat service help from my host during the move! It all went quite well!! Anyways congrats on the new blog 🙂

    Reply
    • April 6, 2015 at 2:56 pm
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      Thank you so much Sandeep. Yes all site rankings and metrics are associated with the domain name. My blog is on wordpress domain (prepforum.wordpress.com) . So it was imperative for me to change the domain name. My newsite Life11 has the domain name life11.org . I think it is a good practice to have your own domain name right from the beginning. Now, I would advice everybody to do so . 🙂 Thanks for sharing your experience

      Reply
  • April 7, 2015 at 12:19 am
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    Hi Somali,

    I was in the same predicament as you were and guess what! I too decided the same way as you did. I am still finding ways to keep both separate without stumbling on each other. Let me see how it works. It was your title that brought me here.

    Nice writeup.

    Best
    Katie
    Admin
    Chennai Focus

    Reply
    • April 7, 2015 at 9:23 am
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      Thank you Katie for stopping by. I guess this is what most people would do if they have to change the domain name for the self hosted blog, All the best for your new blog.

      Reply

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