~Affiliate post – my full disclosure policy can be found here ~
For almost 18 months I treated blogging as a hobby, a guilty pleasure! (Weird how I felt guilty about taking time out from house hold chores and parenting to write, but it just felt so indulgent). About a week before the end of the kids’ summer holidays last year, when they were all set to go back to school and I was fed up with the thought of having no job to go to, I decided that it was time to become intentional, to make my blog my career. I just wasn’t sure how to go about making that a reality.
In order to have a fully customizable blog which I could add plugins to as well as link affilates from I needed to make some changes. I decided that if I love writing and blogging so much, why not try and see whether I couldn’t turn that love into a form of income.
Decide on a domain name
One of the first things I realised I needed to do was to take the leap and buy my own domain name. As I already had a blog it was easy to choose my name, I was using it already. The next step was to find a webhost and I wanted to choose one who could 1) sort out buying my domain name for me 2) host my site and 3) enable me to continue using WordPress.
Choosing a Webhost (and why I chose SiteGround)
I did some research, asked other bloggers who they use and I chose SiteGround in the end based on how highly recommended they were. Because I know very little about the technical aspects of moving a blog it was important to know that they have a 24/7 help line. Also they support WordPress as a CMS (content managing system – ooh I have learnt a little bit), I am so familiar with WordPress, it’s become like a dear friend and I would hate to have to learn how to start all over again from scratch. I had also heard that their site security is top notch and having an https site is a requirement nowadays.
Not only a 24/7 helpline but super fast!
Once I’d made the decision, it took a morning to contact them, buy the package and move my site across (all my posts and readers comments), and they were brilliant! I reckon all the clever dudes who work there must be having a ball, they always sound so pleased to help – I can happily say I have made good use of their 24/7 helpline.
One great thing is:
I was delighted to discover that all the people who already were following my blog on the WordPress reader or via e-mail could be transferred across to the new site with a click of a button.
One bad thing is:
The only thing that I was disappointed by was that the ‘likes’ on my old posts couldn’t be saved.
Spending money is necessary for business growth
Yes, that goes against my Scottish heritage to say that. I am not great at spending money so it was a challenge to get over the hurdle of accepting that any business (or even hobby for that matter) requires some outflow in order for it to grow. The 30 day money back guarantee on SiteGround reassured me. I spent more on the package than I thought I would though because I bought a few extra features that were not included in the money back guarantee.
My first reaction!
I have to be honest, immediately after I made the jump I suffered from buyers remorse! Because I’m not all that tech savvy I thought I had made a huge mistake, I even wrote a whole post lamenting the fact. It took a bit of scurrying around online asking other bloggers for reassurance before I realised that it was OK, I had done it all right!
It’s maybe a little bit odd to admit this but I am really excited that I have my own website! Now I have to tell you that my right arm is sore, I think I have tennis elbow from typing? Or it could be from the interaction on social media with other bloggers on my phone. ‘Phone forearm’ is one downside I haven’t heard anyone else complain about. I should possibly be pacing myself a bit better, otherwise I just need to get fighting fit for this new adventure!
I know I have heaps to learn but I have found some amazingly supportive online forums and an almost overwhelming array of resources. I have learnt loads already and I’m excited for the future.
If YOU are looking to upgrade or start a new venture I’d highly recommend SiteGround, Click on the image below to find out more information on prices and the different packages they offer.