To Self-Host… Or Not?

2016-02-29 18.41.41My blog has been on my mind a lot lately. I posted recently about how the niggling blogger doubts had gotten a hold of me and how I’d considered jacking it all in after five years, but how I knew deep down I wanted to continue on blogging. In between the sugary sweet cake posts that make up my A to Z of Baking Challenge, there are ideas for posts, ideas that I just can’t let go. And so, on I blog.

But aside from the post ideas I’ve been having, I’ve also been thinking about the presentation of my little blog, and I’ve finally, after all this time, begun exploring the option of self-hosting. I feel a little late to the self-hosting party but oh my word, it feels like a minefield!! Maybe it’s not really. After all, lots of bloggers out there are self hosting and surely not everyone is a certified web designer.

However, I’m finding trawling through the information out there and making an informed decision just overwhelming. Who do I go with to host my site? How much should I set aside for this? Am I sure I really want to self-host after all? Is it worth it for me?

I’ve asked one or two lovely blogger friends for their advice and I’m really grateful for the clear information and tips they’ve given me. But I’m still feeling hesitant to make a decision. The impulsive part of me, the part who gets me into all kinds of debacles, thinks I should dive right in, after all I’ve been thinking about this for a while so why not just go for it? The other part of me thinks I should spend ages researching the self-hosting route to make sure I’m making the right decision.

It looks as though there can be some pretty costly hosting packages out there and I’m really not sure how much I should be spending. I’m willing to invest something in this but as much as I want to give this my all, I’m also watching the pennies. We’re nearly six months into being homeowners and about to begin our second round of home improvements (this time to the garden), so can I really afford to spend much?

Whilst discussing the merits of self-hosting my blog, a friend suggested I ask myself what I would really get out of self-hosting. My answer is that I would like to make more of this little old blog, I’d like it to look more professional and I’d like the freedom to display it just as I want it, with no WordPress-imposed ads about how to get a flat stomach, or such like. And yes, the future option to monetise it is not something I would be opposed to.

I guess that means I should take the plunge and go self-hosted then, doesn’t it?!

I would love to hear from fellow bloggers on this one – are you self-hosted? Why/why not? Any tips you have at all about this would be very much appreciated!

My Random Musings