Every beginners guide to blogging should start with how much will it cost to start a blog. Here’s the thing, to start a blog is probably the cheapest business venture today. There are costs, but not as many as starting any other business.
Starting a blog consists of some must-haves and some optional things that you don’t need that much in the beginning. To get started, you need a good internet connection, a website and time to spend writing and building a blog. Later, you can invest in some additional tools to help your blog grow even more.
It may seem like a lot of money when you put it all on paper, especially if you are broke, but in the long run, it’s not that much money.
The first thing you should think about if you want to start a blog is which platform do you want to use. Most popular is WordPress.org and there is a reason for it. If you want to look professional and be professional, you should be self-hosted, and for that WordPress.org is the best.
In this short, but useful, beginners guide to blogging, I’ll walk you through costs of domain name, hosting, legal bundles, themes, email services etc.
Why you should not use free blogging platofrms?
The most important thing about why you should avoid free blogging platforms is you don’t own your website, which is a bit scary. Also, they can shut down your website at any time.
You won’t have any control over your blog and you won’t be able to monetize and grow your blog.
And the last thing, you can’t build an online business on the free blogging platform.
If you want to start a blog, one of the essential things is the domain name. A domain name is your web address or URL. It can be your name or something that has a connection with your future content or your niche.
My blog’s domain name is justsomerandomstuff.com. I’ve chose it because it is a library of random, but useful stuff.
A domain name will cost you from 9$, and the cheapest ones are with Namecheap. You can even find a domain for under a $1. Namecheap also offers free privacy protection forever.
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The second essential thing is hosting. Costs of hosting vary depending on offered features – how many visitors, SSL certificate, etc. Consider this the most importing thing for your blog, since it is what makes and keeps it online.
Chose it carefully and explore all your options. Also, most of the hosting companies lure you in with hosting for just a 3$ a month, but actually, you pay hosting for a whole year. So, in the end, your receipt will list a cost of hosting for a year, not a month and it will be higher then it said in the beginning.
It starts at about 50$ a year and goes up to 85$ a year.
Bluehost is the best option for starting out, it will cost you 65$ for a year.
I use EasyWP because they offer monthly payments, and it was something I was able to afford in the beginning. They start from $3.88 (and first month is $0.01).
In order to run your blog, you must comply with certain legal requirements. Otherwise, you can risk getting your blog removed or not getting into some affiliate networks. Also, you need to protect your content.
This can cost you from 20$, or 160$ if you buy in bundles.
There are free WordPress plugins that can help you at the beginning such as WP Legal Pages. But, if you want to be professional, you should reconsider investing in legal pages later on.
Like I already said, domain name and hosting are essential to start a blog, everything else is optional.
The thing that will distinguish your blog from others is the website theme. There are plenty of free themes ou there, but keep in mind that they have certain limitations mostly in the customization part.
Premium themes cans cost from 30$ to 200$ depending on features and support. It is a one-time payment.
When you are starting out in the world of blogging, it is recommended that you start growing your email list almost immediately.
They all have a free option, but as you grow your list you will new to switch to paid plans.
Costs for this start at 10$ and go up to 150$.
Here’s one more expense to add on this list. If you want to look professional and monetize your blog, it’s not a bad idea to think about dedicated email adresse for your blog.
You will need to use Gmail for some things, but having firstname.lastname@example.org is more professional.
You can use plugins on your blog to make your blogging life easier. Most of the essential plugins have free options so you don’t have to worry about it in the beginning.
I wrote a blog post about blogging tools you might need, check it out here.
Beginners guide to blogging: Total costs to start a blog
Let’s summarize all the costs.
If you use only essentials, it will cost you around 75$ to start a blog without legal pages, or around 250$ with them.
If you choose to invest in optional costs, it can cost you up to 400$ to start a blog.
As you can see it can easily go from “cheap” to costly. Chose wisely and think about your needs thoroughly.