Creating your own website can seem very daunting, but it doesn’t have to be! I am by no means a professional web designer. Like everything I do, I learn by trial and error. Getting out there and doing it. I’m here to empower you, and to tell you that you are capable of doing this on your own! This has definitely been a learning experience for me and I am so proud of how far I’ve come and how my website looks and feels.
My blogging journey began about 3 years ago on wordpresss.com. When I started my blog, my intentions were to simply share my thoughts, and current dealings with loved ones and anyone else who cared to read what I had to say. I used WordPress’s unpaid option and so my url was example. wordpress .com. In order for me to use my own domain I needed to upgrade to a paid account. I upgraded and began using my own domain which I purchased through Name Cheap. Max recommended this site for a domain because of the great price and because he has used it many times before. My experience with them has been great, their customer support is prompt and very helpful.
Change of Purpose
Once I became a Young Living distributor the purpose of my blog/website changed and professionalism became a priority. Using my own domain was the first step for me. Upgrading to a paid account with WordPress allowed me to access better themes. The themes that were available to me at this point just did not give me the look or creative freedom that I was looking for. I purchased a theme from Solo Pine, but quickly realized that I needed to upgrade again to WordPress’s business account. At this point I didn’t know what my other options were, so I took the plunge. The annual cost for the business account is $200 😳 This was the discounted price! It seemed like a lot but like I said, I didn’t know that I had other options. So I bit the bullet and paid the $200.
Know Your Options
My advice is to always always research! I didn’t and because of that I paid way more than I needed to. Thankfully I was able to get a refund from WordPress. 😅 Had I not been able to I would have not only lost money but I would’ve been stuck with less freedom. I’ll elaborate on this in a second.
Becoming a part of a blogging community is very important. Had I not done so, I would not have learned what I know now, and I wouldn’t have the help and support that I do. (If you aren’t yet part of a blogging community join mine on Facebook!) I came across a post in another blogging community that I am a part of that made me question my decision to use WordPress’s business account.
The post that I came across was talking about self hosting being the best way to monetize your website. Self hosting allows you to choose which ads will go on your website and allows you way more creative freedom! With the WordPress biz account you are able put paid ads on your website, but these ads are chosen by WordPress. You are also able to upload your open themes under the biz account. My friend Ell from the group, suggested self hosting with Site Ground. (NOTE: Site Ground also offers domains) The transition was super easy and affordable. I went from paying $200/year with WordPress’s business account to paying $40 somethin’/year with Site Ground. Once I created my Site Ground account I messaged customer support and they helped me with everything! I logged into my Name Cheap account and pointed my servers to Site Ground which was super easy with the help of Site Ground’s support. It is so much easier than it sounds. You will get used to the terminology. I don’t know the logistics or technical things about any of it, I just followed the directions given to me by customer support and the directions listed on my domain provider’s site/site ground.
Transferring from WordPress.com to WordPress.org
Site Ground’s customer support made this so EASY. They did it all for me. They simply asked me for my account info, and the email address and password that I wanted to use to create my new account. The changes were made and all of my content was transferred. When it transferred over my theme reverted back to my old WordPress theme because I had to upload the Solo Pine theme that I had paid for onto wordpress.org.
A recommendation that I do have for those of you transferring content is, to make sure that you have all of your images backed up. I didn’t and now some of my posts are missing images, and because I didn’t have them all saved they will either remain without images, or I will have to take new photos for the posts. Either way you will need to go back into your posts and insert your images again. So be prepared for that task. I recommend setting aside a full day or night to do this so that you get it all done in one sitting. I didn’t and I had just rebranded with the new theme and logo, and then had to go in and change everything little by little. 😬 That was a little embarrassing because I had announced my rebranding on all of my social media platforms only to shortly after have my website under construction. But ah well it happened and I learned from it. 🙂
I am so pleased with the ease, freedom, and direction of my website. My hope is that you learned a thing or two and that you have been inspired to go after making your own website. Let me know if you need any help or have any questions!
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