Finding Hosting: To Move or Not to Move?

Image: Morguefile

Image: Morguefile

I’ve been on social media for about a year and a half now (only nine months for this blog and twitter, however), and I’ve reached a crossroads. A few months ago, I bought my own domain name with the intent of finding hosting and setting up my professional website. Especially since I’ve become more involved with freelance editing. (That’s one of the reasons I haven’t set up an editorial price list, etc, on this blog.)

As I creep closer to my goal, I have started looking at the possibilities. I don’t need anything fancy, and I’m busy enough with other projects that I don’t want it to be complicated. I know that I’d like it to support WordPress. And in that case, WordPress has suggested BlueHost, DreamHost, and LaughingSquid as hosts that work well. I only know one person’s opinion on BlueHost, and the rest are unfamiliar to me. Have any of you guys used the above-mentioned hosts? Got any feedback? Suggestions?

I worry that moving to my own domain (away from the WordPress feed) will cause me to lose the small (but communicative) following I have here. Ideally I’d like to keep everything in one place, but it’s possible that I could keep this as my blog and just pay for hosting for an editorial landing page. But, given that I write mostly about writing on The Sarcastic Muse, and reserve this blog for my more personal wayward musings, it’s possible that keeping both wouldn’t make much of a difference anyway.

What are your thoughts or experiences? Any advice would be welcome!

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8 thoughts on “Finding Hosting: To Move or Not to Move?

  1. I took the easy option and went for hosting by WordPress, sorting out the domain name through them. It was really straightforward. The only downside that I’ve found so far was that I couldn’t embed the Mailchimp mailing list signup form, which I could have done if I’d used WordPress for the blogging software but had it hosted elsewhere. I’ve sort of got around that, and compared with the hassle of learning how to administer my own site I feel like I’ve still come out ahead.

    • We bought The Sarcastic Muse’s domain name through WordPress, too, and thus far it’s worked for us. We were planning to put in a Mailchimp mailing list soon, but it doesn’t embed? I didn’t know that. Either way, I’m still on the fence for my personal site. At the very least, I should consider an editorial landing page. I’m just unfortunately no longer up-to-date with website things. But thank you for your input! It gives me things to consider.

  2. I’m not sure if you are using WordPress.com or WordPress.org. In case you didn’t know, there is a difference. All the research I have done in the past is that everyone starts out with the .com variety (free) for about the first year or so at which point most are ready to move to the more customizable (and not free) .org variety. I agree that staying on WordPress instead of venturing off into the “private” domain removes some of the free marketing that such a popular blogging platform provides. I did secure my own domain name and have linked that to my WordPress blog. It almost seems like you can do it in stages to become familiar along the way. My best advice is that if you haven’t checked out the difference between wordpress.com and wordpress.org, it might at least be worth a look. Good luck 🙂

    • Thanks for your input, Dave. I’ve looked at WordPress.org because I know a couple people who have moved to it. I know that the hosting sites that I’ve looked into support the WordPress.org variety. So they have access to WP templates and can log in via WordPress, but they still have a personal domain that isn’t of the free variety. And they’re still separate from the WordPress.com readers, etc. Ideally, I’d like to remain connected to WP because I like the template feature (I’m lazy), and the blog system, and it’s a set-up that I’m used to. So I’ve been thinking of hosting it through, say, BlueHost, and powering it with WordPress.org. But once again I’m stuck weighing the options of free marketing versus a more customizable space. Hmm . . . decisions, decisions!

      • Ahem, fellow lazy compatriot speaking here, if and when you do make your decision, please let me know. It might make my eventual decision easier to make also 😉 Seriously though, my personal opinion (is there any other type) is that if there is actual functionality that you want to incorporate into your space that WordPress can’t handle and (big ‘and’ here) you feel you have the time to devote to playing with the customizing process, definitely look into it. In the end, form and function play into success. But, ultimately it’s the quality of content that is going to factor the most, and you’re definitely good to go there 🙂

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