What are the best blog hosting sites to use? Bluehost and Siteground are the most popular ones out there, and I’m going to help you decide which is best for you.
The beauty of blogging…
You don’t quite know when a post is going to bring you traffic right?
You may wake up one day to find a surge in subscribers or traffic.
Or maybe a post of yours even went viral.
You can’t quite tell, can you?
In the first few months of starting my blog, I was guest posting heavily.
And what happens when a guest post goes live is this….
You have a surge in traffic and people signing up for your opt-in freebie at the same time.
If your site decides to go down at that time and this is by no means a mistake of yours…
The opportunity to capitalize on that flood of traffic and new subscribers comes crashing down.
You just lost what you worked so hard for.
If people can’t access your site, they aren’t going to bother coming back to it, especially when they are new to your name.
Likewise, if your site’s speed is terribly slow, and your page doesn’t load just because 50 people are using it at the same time, you’ve lost a reader and potential subscriber who has to rush off because she has carpool or needs to run some quick errands.
You need the best blog hosting site because it can make a huge difference in your blogging income.
My Experience With Bluehost
So here’s what happened with my previous host – Bluehost:
- My site has been down at a stretch of 5 hours. I knew about this twice. I wonder how many instances this has happened that I didn’t know about it.
- I had to wait 20 plus minutes for some support from customer service
- Customer service doesn’t help me with solving my issue
- When I’m on a chat, the representative disappears because they are serving others at the same time
- Site speed is slow when you have less than 15 plugins and 10 posts This is even after you’ve smushed your images and uploaded only the required image sizes (nothing bigger than necessary) (how many can you have when you’ve been blogging for less than 4 months?)
Every time I had a guest post go live, I was terribly nervous.
I panicked and kept clicking through wondering if my site would be down.
The thing that prevented me from switching was that I had a 3-year contract that I had paid in full. And this host seemed to be the best option for new bloggers. One that came highly recommended by several people.
If you just started blogging, you’re probably going to be nudged into signing up with them as well.
They offer a great referral commission and you can’t blame other bloggers for recommending them.
But once I found out that I could cancel at any time and get refunded the prorated amount, I jumped at the opportunity.
And I also found a better option – Siteground.
Why I switched to Siteground
If you’re a new blogger or you’re looking at switching to a different host, especially if you’re on the one I previously was using, you won’t be disappointed with Siteground.
Before I walk you through the steps of what I did, here’s why I love Siteground and why I know it is one of the best blog hosting sites ever.
Customer Service is amazing
I never had to wait more than a minute for a customer service representative to serve me via their live chat compared to almost 20 minutes via my previous host.
Their uptime is fantastic (and so is their speed)
You will notice a change instantly.
They give free SSLs with their domains
SSL is a security certificate used on sites and Google is starting to put a higher emphasis on sites that use SSL certificates. It comes free with Siteground.
They handle your transfers for free (more on this later)
You get amazing 24/7 support and a free domain
They do redirects and install WordPress for you for free as well.
Their price is extremely competitive
An entire year of hosting for less than $50 with all the necessary support.
How to Start A Blog With Siteground
#1 Navigate to Siteground and click ‘Sign up’
@MeeraKothand is helping me set-up my first WordPress Blog.Click To Tweet
#2 Choose a plan
If you’re starting a new blog or are relatively new to blogging, start with the StartUp Plan. You can easily upgrade once your traffic and revenue picks up.
#3 Choose a domain name
And if it’s available, you can move on to the next step.
#4 Fill in your details
You don’t need to add Domain Privacy and HackAlerting if you don’t want to. The cost works up to less than $50 for an entire year.
#5 Install WordPress
You should now have access to your Siteground dashboard. The only step remaining is to install WordPress.
I’ll walk you through how you can do this but here’s the easy way.
Hop on Live Chat and request the Siteground team to do the WordPress installs for you.
#6 Go to http://www.YOURDOMAIN.com/wp-admin
Once they send you your log in emails, navigate to http://www.YOURDOMAIN.com/wp-admin
#7 Log in to WordPress
Now that you have your password, you can log into WordPress and you’ll see your WordPress dashboard. It’ll look scary and overwhelming but you’ll get the hang of it soon.
How to Migrate Your Blog to Siteground for a Different Host
If you are migrating to Siteground from a different host, as I did, just follow these steps.
#1 Follow Steps #1-4 from above but choose ‘I have an existing domain’ if it’s the same one you want to transfer over.
2. Hop on Live Chat and they will advise you on what you should do next to initiate the migration.
You will have to submit a Website Transfer Request, key in the cPanel details of your previous host as well as the password.
Siteground will then proceed with the migration and keep you updated once it’s done.
3. Get your old host to update your DNS Name Servers
I asked the Bluehost customer service rep to update the DNS for me and point it to Siteground.
You can also do this yourself by navigating to your old host’s cPanel and clicking nameservers.
4. If you got a domain through Bluehost…
You need to do a domain transfer. You can request for a domain transfer within your Siteground dashboard. This will initiate the Siteground team to do the necessary transfer for you.
If you prefer to do the WordPress installation yourself, here’s how you do it.
Go to cPanel within your Siteground dashboard
Click the WordPress installer.
Click the blue button
Fill in the details and choose your domain from the drop-down
Create an admin username and password. This will become your WordPress login details
You now officially have your self-hosted blog.
As you can see, there’s nothing very fancy here when you first log in to WordPress. WordPress uses a generic theme by default. But it gives you access to thousands of themes to make your blog ‘YOU’.
I know you probably have so many other questions on launching your blog. If you do, here are 13 critical questions on every launchers’ mind.
You’ll probably get answers to some of yours here.