Choosing the software in which your website will run is extremely important. If you choose the wrong one you will be missing out on a great deal of useful features and it will be a nightmare to switch over to another once your site is established. You basically have 3 options; WordPress, TypePad or Blogger.
Each platform offers two different options to use their software. You can host it on your own domain or you can get a free blog and they will host it. The quickest and easiest option is obviously to get a free blog that is hosted by them. However, I HIGHLY recommend that you host it on your own domain. Here are a few good reasons for that:
1. You have complete control over your blog. No one can suspend your account etc. It’s your blog, you’re just using their software!
2. If you ever decide to sell your blog, you’re out of luck if you’re not hosting it on your own domain … you don’t own it so you can’t sell it!
3. Are people really going to take you serious if you’re using a free blog that you’re not even hosting yourself? You may lose credibility, as many people may think you’re not serious enough about your own blog.
4. Free blogging platforms restrict you from accessing files like the .htaccess file, which is a very important file to control when your blog becomes popular!
If you’re going to make a serious effort at this, you should pay £30 or so each year for your own domain. This is easy to do and I will guide you through the process step by step.
Out of these three platforms WordPress wins the quality race hands down. The reason WordPress is so incredibly popular and effective is because it allows you to easily install plugins. There are LOADS of plugins that will do just about anything you want and most of them are free.
Here are some reasons why I think WordPress is better than the rest:
It’s Free (always good).
It’s massive – WordPress has a huge community behind it that produces free themes (front end part of you website that everyone can see) and plugins (small programs that carry out a specific function like a secure contact box, or an affiliate link to amazon) that make your website fantastic.
It’s user friendly – if you have some familiarity with computers you should have little problem building a website that looks great and that ranks well on the Google search engine.
It looks great! WordPress has loads of themes that stand out from the crowd. You also have many options on some themes to customise your site to get it looking how you want it to. The theme I use for all my websites including this one is a paid theme called Catalyst. I recommend it to you wholeheartedly because it will give you total flexibility and freedom in the design of your website without having to learn any programming languages. Go to the Catalyst website by clicking on this link.
We have pretty much established you need to be using WordPress (.org) for your website. In a alter post I will explain how to install this onto your server. The next step for you is to choose and buy a domain name. Read my next post to find out all about this