So, today I decided to leave Blogger and start a new blog somewhere else, somewhere that I can monetize my blog. I'm wondering what blog sites other hubbers use - what are your experiences with existing blog sites? Are they easy to use? Easy to monetize? I'm looking for a free blog, unless any fees would be taken directly from earnings - do blog sites even do that? Because, seriously, I'm unemployed and simply do not have the money to pay (or purchase, as I've noticed is a requirement for a Wordpress blog) for hosting and themes in order to earn a limited income.
I agree with Marisa, I think Blogger is your best bet. I'm pretty sure you have to pay up front with Wordpress, though I don't use the dot com version.
One possibility is using Weebly. I've never used it but some Hubbers have used it and have monetized it.
Wordpress.com is out, then, because they don't let you monetize the free version of their account.
Honestly, I would suggest sticking with Blogger and just Google how to do the things you want. There is no free alternative any more, at least not one that's reliable. Weebly does have a free service but its free service is for "no index' blogs only, i.e. Google can't see them!
Any other free service will be (a) showing ads that compete with yours and (b) is likely to be on slow servers (which will affect your reader experience and also affect whether Google ranks your blog).
Also, if you are unemployed and looking to your blog as a way to get income - my advice would be, don't. IF you're financially OK and you see your blog as a way to build a steady longer-term income, that's fine, but not if you need money right now. It takes too long if you're starting from scratch. Do freelance writing instead.
Breaking into freelance writing is hard and you'll feel like you're never going to get anywhere - BUT even at the lower end, you will make more money, much sooner, with freelance writing than with blogging.
I am wondering if with Wordpress if you have to pay upfront or if the purchases & fees are paid directly from your revenues?
You can pay self-hosting monthly but no, it does not come out of your revenues, there is no host that does that.
Honestly, if you don't already have ONE specialist subject that you want to make a SINGLE blog about and put all your efforts into that, you'd be much better forgetting about blogging and writing Hubs for the niche sites instead. You'll make money much faster.
Thanks for the info, Marisa.
Guess I'll re-enter Blogger, then, because HubPages is for income, of a sort, while blogging could be more personal. I'm wanting to start an authors blog about writing my memoir. It goes a little deeper than that, but at the same time I wont really be posting anything too personal because those stories (the personal kind) will eventually be published in my memoir.
I'm not the same person I was when I first joined a few years ago. I've grown up quite a bit since then even though I really do feel quite a bit the same.
I see. Well, if you're not worried about making money from your author's blog, then I would strongly recommend Wordpress.com
The big advantage of Wordpress.com is that you will not be blogging in isolation. When you create a blog there, you'll notice there's a facility to "follow" other blogs on Wordpress.com. Search for blogs by other authors, follow them, and they will very likely follow you back. There's also a forum. So you have some sense of community and support.
The problem with a personal blog is that you're very unlikely to get search engine traffic. There is something quite depressing about writing for no audience! So in choosing where to blog, I'd definitely look for a platform that includes some kind of social interaction. As well as Wordpress.com, you could also look at Tumblr. LiveJournal used to be a good place for journal-type blogs but I believe it's changed ownership so not sure how it works now.
Yeah, not a fan of Tumblr. For myself, anyway, I can see how it would work for some, but it doesn't work for me. I'm definitely not looking to make money from a blog. I would only use monetization as an added benefit.
I love the idea of a forum, I remember enjoying it so much here. And, yeah, I totally understand what you mean about writing without an audience! I was getting some traffic from blogger, but I'm pretty sure it was from my promotions - only. I did a test where I didn't promote my blog post and my traffic dropped drastically (from an unimpressive 40 to an even more unimpressive 5). And no followers.
I'll check out LiveJournal, too. Thanks!
Wow, I am really liking Workpress! There are a lot of options and it seems a bit complicated yet easy to digest at the same time. I haven't found the forums yet, though. I really like the fact that I can upgrade to a premium site when I'm ready. I'm assuming that with an upgrade that nothing will be lost while gaining new services. Terrific!
Yes, when you upgrade you don't lose anything you've already done. You can even transfer the whole site to a host using the Wordpress.org software and they will 301 forward the whole thing for you, so nothing (including backlinks) is lost.
Here are the forums - they are support forums rather than topical forums though
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