The Ultimate Guide to a Wildly Sticky, Successful and Outstanding Blog
Setting up the Blog — Picking the Platform
If you’re new to code and blogware, take heart. Most bloggers started out knowing nothing about the technical side of blogging. It might seem like a lot to learn, but we all did, just as we all learned to read. You’ll be tweaking your blog in no time. Somehow, playing with the code seems to be in a blogger’s genes.
Choosing or Changing a Domain Name
Naturally the closer your URL matches your blog title, the easier it will be for readers to remember and return to it. When you sign up for that domain, check the box for at least two years. Search engines look more favorably on new domains that plan to stick around. Also consider the option of buying an existing domain, but read up on the subject before you do. Here’s some additional advice.
- The site wizard tackles the questions you’ve been wondering about in Tips on How to Choose a Good Domain Name for Your Website
- Consider what’s going on in the marketplace when you areChoosing a Good Domain Name.
- Seomoz offers realistic Expectations and Best Practices for Moving to or Launching a New Domain If you don’t need this information now, you’ll need it one day.
- Sitepoint offers solid guidance on how to Hit the Jackpot! How to Find Money-making Domains. Do the research Mara Miller suggests and you could end up way ahead of the game.
- And DonÃ¢â¬â¢t Buy that New Domain Name Yet think about the values of buying an old one. Also weigh in the baggage an old domain can bring.
- BONUS: How to Use the New Custom Domain Name Feature for Your Blog*Spot Blog: A Tutorial
Choosing the Blogging Platform — What Sort of Home Will You Build?
Bloggers are generous with their time and we’re helpful. Don’t be shy about asking, especially about the technical stuff. Someone will step up to offer the hand you need. Bloggers care about the blogosphere working right.
- Start here. USC Annenberg has pulled together the background, a list of the common blogging jargon, and an overview of the blogging tools. [via Frank]
- The purpose of this research is to find what your options are. About.com’s Which Blog Platform is Right for You? offers 15 links to blog platforms. The selection is useful to new and advanced bloggers.
- A well-thought top-ten list can be helpful. The Top Consideration When Choosing a Free Blogging Platform.
- Though most seasoned bloggers might steer you from a “hosted” or free blog — blogger, wordpress. com, or the free SixApart typepad.com — Each has its value. If you’re blog is solely a personal, or a short-term project, a free blog might work best for you.
- Be sure to consider the opinions of other bloggers as well as those of reviewers. Which Blogging Platform Do You Use and Why? – Open Mike Some reviewers aren’t as hands on as we might wish they would be.
- Keep in mind that the platform or blog software you use will be easier to negotiate, if you are part of a community who use the same tool. Reach out to bloggers when you have a question or a problem to solve. You’ll be blogging sooner and better if you Learn from Someone who Knows.
Choosing Hosting — Who Will You Count on?
Your host is someone you rely on to care for your blog in ways that you cannot. Don’t make price the only issue. As with everything else, in hosting you tend to get what you pay for. Know what you need and what to look for before you choose. Here’s outstanding wisdom on choosing a host.
- To understand the specs and the key questions, you might start with What to look for in a Web Host? It’s nice to know the difference between a T-1 and an OC-24.
- With those basics, you’re set to consider the values and features that would meet your exact needs. Christopher Heng has outlined solid criteria for choosing a free web host or commercial web host. He includes further references if you want to know more.
- In this classic, What to Look for in a Web Host, Dan Cray offers a starter list of questions to ask when you make the calls to web hosts you’re thinking of doing business with.
When choosing a host, ask for recommendations from bloggers you know. Also ask the web host for recommendations from clients they have hosted in the past. We had two great sponsors at SOBCon — Network Solutions and THC. Read their blogs and see which is for you.
Setting up your first blog can be daunting. . . . Recently someone said that he had trouble choosing because the blog software had adequate tech support. No worries there, the whole blogosphere seems to be ready to help a new blogger.
The list is thin by comparison to what’s available. What advice would you add?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Work with Liz!!
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