A few posts ago, some of us had the courage to admit we're addicted. One of the real danger signs is moving up to the harder stuff. I'm talking about blogging here folks, not drugs or charcuterie.
Someone asked, so I thought I'd offer a few suggestions on how to easily move up into paying for your own domain and hosting. If the need to be able to reach your site 24/7 (nevermind being able to reach knowledgeable support) is as important to you as to any professional site owner, you'll have to start paying, but there are some very reasonable hosting values out there. Note that neither I, nor the School is making official endorsements of any of the products listed below, but I can vouch for them, since I either use them, or have had clients that do.
Step 1. Your own domain name.
This should be a separate post but I'll mention two of the cheapest places to get one - GoDaddy.com and Yahoo Domains. Plans start as low as a few bucks. Please read the fine print, some of the cheap deals require hosting with these companies.
Any reputable web hoster will offer domain registration. Having your hosting and domain registration in the same place makes billing and DNS stuff easier. So easy that you won't have to learn what DNS stands for. You shouldn't pay more than 20 bucks a year no matter where you are.
2. Get a web hoster with a blogging tool built in.
For those of you that don't want to learn what CHMOD stands for, or aren't curious where your mySQLadmin tool is, choose a hoster where all you have to do is sign in, put in your credit card #, login and start blogging. You can find hosters with Wordpress installed already for less than 8 bucks a month and Hosts with Movable Type installed for $8 and up, depending on your needs.
Wordpress and Movable Type are the examples I choose here since they both have features that allow you to import all your old blogger content with a few clicks. Exporting and moving content is a different subject, but there's lots of resources on how to get it done painlessly.
3. Cheap alternative for all your blogs
Many of you have multilple blogs, or have other family members that blog - I've just found a hoster - successfulhosting.com - with plans starting at 6 bucks a month for 6 sites!. It doesn't have a blog tool pre-installed, but with the Unix hosting, and without too much know-how you can do Wordpress's Famous 5-minute install for free, install Movable Type or pay for Movable Type's support to install MT for you.
There are other options like Typepad, that allow you to have your own domain, but my advice is if you're going to move up into the harder stuff, choose a real host with a real website. There are many benefits to a real hoster, the main one is they all offer 99% or higher guarantees, something Typepad and Blogger can't offer as they go through growing pains.
This Post was written by Paul from Food Blog