Why self host your blog and use WordPress to do so?
As a blog/website designer over at J9 Designs, I get asked this question quite often, when there are many different blogging platforms to choose from, included, but not limited to Blogspot (Goggle), Wix, Weebly and even WordPress.com (which is free for most).
Even if you have no thoughts of monetizing or making money off your blog. Why pay to host your own blog, when the aforementioned platforms are pretty much all free of charge to use and setup a blog?
One simple word…PLUGINS!!!
WordPress software has the best plugins to choose from and if you are self-hosted you have even more to choose from then you would over at the free WordPress.com platform.
I am not joking when I say there are millions upon millions of plugins that allow you to do just about anything you could ever want or wish to do with your blog looks wise.
So, then how can I whittle it down to just five?
Well for the sake of getting you started, I am going to list the five plugins that will help all on Self Hosted WordPress when starting out.
In doing so I hope I will help all those who are on the fence with starting or transferring their blog to a self hosted WordPress blog or even those who recently did and are just starting out.
1. Text/HTML Plugin – By far the most important plugin you could ever have your hands on to allow you to pretty much put anything in HTML/CSS code on your blog sidebar. Seriously with this one the world is your oyster and the possibilities are endless!
2. Akismet – This is quite possibly the best way in the world to protect your blog from comment and trackback spam. It keeps your site protected from spam even while you sleep. No need to add the dreaded Captcha to block spam, all you have to do is sign up for a free account, save the Askimet API Key given to you on your blog and you are all set! For more on this plugin and how to set it up, click here.
3. JetPack by WordPress – Bring the power of the WordPress.com cloud to your self-hosted WordPress. Jetpack enables you to connect your blog to a WordPress.com account to use the powerful features normally only available to WordPress.com users. This plugin allows you to use a ton of different plugins from the makers of WordPress.com, including Jetpack Subscriptions and even image widgets to bring and all images to your blog’s sidebar and even link to other sites or pages, too.
4. WordPress SEO by Yoast – The first true all-in-one SEO solution for WordPress, including on-page content analysis, XML sitemaps and much more. This pretty much does it all in one little plugin as far as optimizing your site for the best possible search engine capabilities and helps even those who don’t know much of much when it comes to SEO to set it up on all their blog articles.
5. Pinterest Pin It Buttons for Images – Let’s face it blogs need great images and all images need a way to be brought easily over to Pinterest, because in this day in age and Pinterest is the place to be and to be seen as far as blog articles are concerned. This widget allows for you to easily get those fancy “Pin It” labels you see on most blogs images when you roll over them to indeed pin said image (blog article) to Pinterest. For more on this plugin and how to set it up, please click here.
Summing It Up…
There you have it the best WordPress Plugins to have when you first set up your WordPress Self Hosted blog/website. This is only the tip of the iceberg, by the way and there are truly so many more wonderful plugins out there to be had and used once you are set up on your own Self Hosted WordPress Site. And for those who are indeed interested in setting up a new Self Hosted WordPress blog/website or for any help or suggestions on plugins, please contact Janine at J9 Designs for more help, information and pricing, too here.
*This post was written and can also be found as a guest post on Raising Reagan’s Blog here.*