“The capacity to learn is a gift; The ability to learn is a skill; The. willingness to learn is a choice.” Brian Herbert
This little series is well and truly on it’s way. I’m loving it each week and hope you guys are to! If one person can take something from each post I’m one the moon with that!!
Here a few posts of what I’ve covered so far:
This week I wanted to talk about Self Hosting and who to do it with!
I have come across a few self host options and picking one that suits you best can be hard to pin down. Over the last few weeks I have gotten in touch with fellow bloggers and asked them to review their hosts. I know this kind of review is something I would have loved to seen before I made the jump so hopefully this will help anyone thinking about doing it.
Who Should I Host With?
How You Found Them: I found an affiliate link through another blogger I follow and saved it for pay-day. I loved the look and feel of this blog and when I saw she had an affiliate link I jumped on board. Bluehost was the only host I looked at as I didn’t realise there was others. I also did it on a whim at the time. In hindsight I properly should have looked at more for my own peace of mind but hey… nothing ventured nothing gained as they say.
How Much Do you pay: I signed up for the 12 month option. Its cheaper if you do it for more time but I didn’t know if i’d like it… I thought the minimum amount of time was a safe bet for me. It worked out at £9.95 for me and I also added on a security feature for £23.88. All in for the year my bill was £171.94. From below reviews you can see it works out cheaper going for longer periods of time.
Service Review: They have an online chat option which is the only thing I’ve ever had to use. I have never waited more than 5 minutes for someone to sign on with me and help out. Each time they’ve always fix the issue I had at the time and if they couldn’t fix it they pointed me in the right direction. You can also save the chats for future reference which I found helpful if I ever needed to revert back to a particular issue.
Would You recommend them: Yes. Bluehost is user-friendly and I have been able to do a lot of the work myself. You can pay for them to install and set it up. I didn’t opt for this and was able to google a lot of stuff I hadn’t a clue about. It’s quite popular with a lot of articles online about them. I will most likely opt for a longer term with them come my renewal.
How you found them: I found Bluehost through the recommendation of one of my favorite bloggers. I kept seeing it being recommended so I decided to give it a try!
How much a month / do you pay up front: $3.95 a month for hosting, plus I pay $0.99 a month for domain name privacy. I also got my domain name for free when I registered!
Service Review: I have never had a problem with Bluehost! Their dashboard is very easy to use, and the couple of times that I have contacted their customer service, they’ve been super helpful!
Would You Recommend them: Definitely! They’re a great choice for web hosting, especially when you’re first starting out.
How you found them: I’ve made a really quick research, because I was kind of.. confident enough that I wanted to go with Siteground. I can’t explain, just some gut feeling, and my ‘research’ only confirmed the choice I’ve already made. I then purchased my plan with no hesitation and never had regrets!
How Much Do you pay: I bought a 2 years plan with a separate domain (£12) and paid around £90 in total. So that makes around £3 per month, but I think there’s some kind of a sale now for less than that.
Service Review: I absolutely love their service! They managed to transfer all of my content to my new blog, and everything happened for less than an hour! This service is completely free, and their live chat is open all the time. I also happened to talk to some Bulgarian guys, which made the whole experience even nicer and kind of personal. 🙂
Would You Recommend them: Absolutely! Maybe their services are a bit pricier (I think you can self host for less money), but overall it’s totally worth it. Like I say – you can skip only one cup of coffee every month, and you’ll be able to afford it.
Siyana also has some posts on making the move if you fancy checking them out!
How you found them: I know that Linda uses it, as does Siyana, and a few other bloggers. They seemed to like them, and I saw that they were really highly rated. I was considering another host, I think it was InMotion, but no-one had really heard of them or used them much, so I decided to go with one that already had good reviews.
How Much Do you pay: I chose their start-up plan for $3.95 a month. You have to pay for a year up front. So that was like $48 or something. It wasn’t too bad.
Service Review: They were so helpful! Especially during the set up process. I had to contact them a lot, and they were fast at getting back to me, and were super nice and friendly. They helped me so much in getting my site up, and they do that whole transfer business for you at no added cost! That was also another factor for me with going with them.
Would You Recommend them: Absolutely! They’re informative, helpful and make the process really smooth. I’m glad I went with them.
Anything else to add-on them: I just thought this was funny, but around 24 hours after I first joined up and made the site, a representative called me and just said Thanks for choosing them and asking if I needed help with anything. It was just a nice touch that they had someone check up 😂
How you found them: I actually host through Site Ground because I bought a theme from Pipdig who offer a free set up service if you buy hosting through their Site Ground affiliate link. (The money they make through this affiliate scheme pays for their time to start-up your site. I think it’s a fair swap! My original blog was WordPress.com so I wanted to stick with that rather than changing to Blogger.
How much do you pay: Because I bought hosting through Pipdig’s affiliate scheme I paid £47.40 for the year and £12.95 for my domain name. I also had to buy a theme for my site which cost £49. (Though that’s a one-off payment!) Finally I chose to buy a redirect for £11 which means if anyone goes onto my old blog they’ll be automatically redirected to my new self hosted site.
Service Review: So far my experience has been excellent! Purchasing was simple and easy to follow and Pipdig kindly did all the set up so I didn’t really have to do anything!
Would You Recommend them: I’d definitely recommend Site Ground (and Pipdig!) You have multiple different package options to suit the amount of traffic you think your site will get. I also think it’s very reasonably priced!
Anything else to add-on them: Honestly if you’re considering going self hosted I’d advise going through Pipdig. Not only will you get a gorgeous theme and layout of your site but they really do everything! I just sent my passwords over and got an email to tell me my site was ready. Going self hosted can be nerve-wracking and you risk losing your already established blog if you don’t quite know what you’re doing! I’m so glad I did though as I couldn’t be happier with how PaleGirlRambling looks!
How you found them: okay so I found wix through pinterest. I saw an ad that showed me I could build a beautiful site and the photo on the ad looked really intriguing. So, knowing I wanted to create my own blog, and not liking wordpress, I quickly made my way over to WIX and started with a free site. Their templates are beyond amazing and I love how they have drop & drag features. So then after a few days of blogging and researching I decided I wanted to purchase my own domain (so it didn’t end it .wixsite.com) and I wanted to add more features to my site.
How much do you pay: I upgraded to the premium plan, where I only have to pay every three years about $30.
There was a lot of skepticism about WIX for a while that they aren’t good for monetization. Well, I found that to be untrue. I think Wix has done a lot to upgrade their server to be up to par with its competitors. I would definitely recommend wix, as then you don’t have to worry about self hosting, since wix hosts the site for you.
Service Review: I haven’t had to deal with an actual support person, but they have a whole list of a ton of FAQs and step by step procedures to do just about anything on your blog! Super helpful, as if you google “how to add a pop up subscribe box” it’ll come right up to the wix support page.
I think the wix payment is super reasonable, unlike some self hosting sites out there. & they have A LOT of cool features available straight from the wix site, and you don’t have to worry about finding your own plug-ins.
How You Found Them: I found Wix through a friend who self hosts a photography/videography website on there.
How Much Do you pay: Wix has a free option and several different premium plans. I paid the yearly cost up front as a special they were having. It was $85 before tax.
Service Review: I haven’t needed any tech support or help from the site so I can’t speak on that but I never have any issues with crashing or server issues. So I’d rate them a 9/10 on that. They have an app and website version and posts can be edited through either which is extremely convenient!
How you found them: Since I’m a web designer, I knew how important web hosting is (although I didn’t at the start of my career!). And since I research EVERYTHING, I did a ton of research on the best web host. While I’ve seen all those BlueHost or SiteGround recommendations on blogger’s website, I knew it might have in part to a generous affiliate program. So that’s why I turned to online forums, where hundreds have participated to be more transparent. And I kept seeing the top recommendations were MDD Hosting and one other one. But MDD had a special coupon so I went with them.
How much do you pay: I pay $39 a year. (And I recommend only doing 1 year at first if you’re trying out a new webhost. You don’t want to get locked into a 3 year contract and then be stuck after problems occur). But, I got my first year for $20, as I found a 50% off coupon online.
Service Review: I LOVE my web host! For one, their service is amazing! I’ve had to ask a few questions, and their live chat helped me answer my questions in-depth. I also wanted to make sure my host had good uptime percentages (which they do) and they keep improving their servers to make everyone’s’ websites faster. I also really appreciate how many resources are available on the basic shared plan, so I’m not running out of space. Plus, they offer free SSL (which is sometimes only included for the first year in other web hosts) and automatic backups with cPanel.
Would You Recommend them: Yes I would! And I always recommend them to my web design clients. I plan on sticking with them for the foreseeable future.
Anything else to add-on them: Don’t be put off by their home page lol. Yes it looks techy and masculine, but a great company and service lies behind it!
So there we have it. Reviews from bloggers about who they host with. A HUGE thank you to all the ladies who joined in and helped make this post with me. Please do make sure to check them all out and get a feel for their websites. Hopefully it gives you a better understanding of whose who in the self hosting world.
As I previously mentioned in last weeks post, I have signed up to an affiliate link for Bluehost so if anyone fancies going to Bluehost feel free to click below. DO NOT feel obligated to do so!!!!! (This means if you sign up on my tag I’ll earn a commission for it, I signed up to Bluehost this way on another blogger page via their link) Leave a comment below if you have more questions on this!
If you have any questions, do get in touch!!! If you do make the move to self hosting let me know how it goes and who you decided to go with!!