I hope you are all well and are having a lovely weekend! About a month ago I plucked up the courage to make the move and go self hosted which I’m not going to lie, was a pretty big decision that I was SO excited for but also nervous for at the same time! I did a blog post that you can see HERE that explains why I decided to go self hosted and all that jazz but since doing that post I had a LOT of questions and requests for me to do a blog post dedicated to my experience and the process of going self hosted as I know it was something that was quite daunting for me that I had to do a lot of research on before finally making the move. For today’s post I thought I would do exactly that and dedicate this post all about going self hosted and hopefully try to answer all your questions. This might turn out to be quite an essay of a post but I’ll try to make it as simple and easy to understand as possible! I hope you enjoy my lovelies…
WordPress.com VS WordPress.org:
Apart from seeing other bloggers switching their blogs to self hosted, the main reason that I started to think about my blog options was because after a year my storage was increasingly getting full to the point where the free WordPress domain (3GB) wouldn’t be enough. I came to the conclusion that it would work out more expensive if I was to upgrade with WordPress.com and I wouldn’t get as much for my money as to go self hosted (wordpress.org) for example the storage space and design. Going self hosted was something I’d always dreamed of, being able to have total freedom and to customise my blog how I wanted and to not be limited with the design etc. I also wanted to get rid of the rosetintedpics.wordpress.com part of my domain name. Although the free WordPress.com domain was a great, easy platform to start my blog, it is very limited and I just felt like I wanted my blog to be more professional and to be able to do more things that WordPress.com doesn’t offer. Also, going self hosted is a once in a lifetime thing that you wouldn’t have to do again once you have made the move, you just have to pay once every year.
What Does ‘Going Self Hosted’ Mean?
Before I started researching, I was totally unaware of what ‘going self hosted’ was or meant. It basically means that WordPress are no longer the host of your site so you have to choose a new web hosting site to host your blog. As I said earlier, this was quite daunting as I had to move my blog from my comfortable WordPress home to Siteground, the web hosting site I chose to host my blog. The thought of loosing anything in the process that I had worked hard on was definitely something I was worried about but trust me, there is honestly nothing to worry about and everything can be transferred over! I only had one issue with transferring my followers which I ended up sorting out myself as it was super easy to do which I will come on to later. Although I’m no technical expert, I managed to do the migration process along with the help of Siteground’s team and everything transferred over fine in the end!
Choosing Your Web Hosting Site & Theme:
Siteground offers a Start Up Plan for £2.75 a month with 10GB of storage which is what I chose and would definitely recommend! This was a more reasonable offer compared to the price of upgrading with WordPress.com and they do the actual migration process for you. They also have a 24/7 live chat support who were always there to help if there were any issues or problems during the migration so don’t worry, you’re not alone! All in all the total cost came to around £45 which pays for the migration, support, storage, security and any updates etc. After now having been with Siteground for a month, I haven’t had any problems and I’m very impressed with their service. Once the migration process has finished and your blog has been made, you can either choose a free WordPress theme that they offer or download one yourself. I decided to purchase one from Pipdig who have some GORGEOUS themes to choose from, it took me ages to finally decide which one I wanted! The Pipdig theme was super easy to download myself, although Siteground can also do that for you and the customising options are endless! Etsy also have some lovely themes that you can download.
- The first step is to choose your plan and enter your domain name. If you already have a domain name you can select the ‘I already have a domain’ option so you can still use your existing custom domain name which you don’t have to pay for again. If you are like me and didn’t already have a domain name, you register your new name e.g rosetintedpics.co.uk instead of rosetintedpics.wordpress.com which it was before. This costs £12.95 a year.
- Once you have chosen your plan and domain name all there is left to do is to sign up with Siteground and fill out your payment details. You then should receive an email with your order confirmation/receipt and an email with your Siteground log in details that you chose.
- Now to start using your hosting account and to access your area you just have to go onto the Siteground website and sign in. There is also a link attached to the email you receive which is a step by step getting started guide if you get stuck. Once you have logged in you don’t have to do anything else as the team at Siteground will now be making your site. This took about 24 hours so the next day I got another email saying that they had successfully downloaded the WordPress software on my hosting account and my site was ready and published! On the email there is a link that takes you to your admin login which is what you use to login to your site. This is the same type of thing that you used to do to login to your WordPress account.
- When I logged in, everything was there so all my post and comments but not my followers or stats. I think Siteground can do this for you if you ask them on the live chat support but if they don’t transfer, don’t panic! I will leave some useful posts below of how to transfer your followers etc but it was super easy to do myself. My stats didn’t transfer either but again this is possible to do as well as your Bloglovin followers if you ask them. I would also recommend installing the Jetpack plugin.
- Finally, the last step was to download my Pipdig theme if you purchase one which I will also leave a tutorial for below and to start customising your new blog! This was by far my favourite part actually getting to design it and although it was also the part that took the longest, I really enjoyed playing around with all the customising options compared to the limited options I had before!
Overall, in my personal experience I’m so pleased I took the leap to go self hosted as even though it was a pretty big leap, I would honestly never look back and in my opinion, it was definitely worth the splurge!! There are lots of things to consider for example the cost as it’s certainly not cheap (in total including the theme it cost me around £80) but hopefully after reading this post it has helped to answer any questions you might have had and helped you to understand the process a bit more!
Thank you so much for reading as always and I hope you enjoyed this post if you made it to the end! If you do decide to go self hosted, make sure to let me know and if you want to ask me further questions don’t hesitate to ask!
Much Love, Amelia xx