Choosing a blogging platform, hosting package, and domain name can get overwhelming pretty quickly. This blog hosting review will help you select the best blog hosting site for you to start your blog!
*Note* We had a nightmare blog hosting situation less than 6 months ago that almost cost us $20,000+ dollars in lost revenues.
It was unbearably frustrating. I called everyone I knew and was frantically looking for a solution to why our hosting was not working as advertised.
Disclosure: We are an affiliate for Bluehost, which means that we may receive a commission if you sign up through our affiliate link. This is at no additional cost to you and helps us continue to offer free content on our site. P.S. We only recommend products and services that we have personally used and continue to stand by!
This story is exactly why we are so passionate about our current host (Bluehost) and why picking the right host from the beginning is so important…
I will tell you more about exactly what happened below, but first here’s what we are going to cover in this article:
- Why “free” blog hosting sites are never free
- Why WordPress is the single best platform for blogging and where even the most newbie of bloggers should start
- 4 Blog hosting sites we have used and our experiences with each
- Why 850,000+ bloggers use Bluehost
- How to start a blog and get it set up in 10 minutes or less
For all of you preferred video learners out there, here is a quick video on this income report from our YouTube Channel below.
. For more free blogging tips and tricks from the experts, make sure to subscribe to our Youtube channel!
Why you should avoid free blog hosting sites
There’s a basic economic theory that is as true for blogging as anything else in life:
“There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”
While starting with a “free” hosting platform may sound alluring, it’s often just a guise to get your money later on.
Think about it: That company needs to make money somehow or they’d go out of business.
Here’s why not to use them (including non-financial reasons):
- Unwanted Ads – “Nothing better than big ads on a website!” – No One Ever. Many of the free sites put ugly unsightly ads on your website. Gotta make money somehow, right?
- Limited Features – Often, these websites limit common features and offer them only for more money. Very similar to a free app with things you buy once inside.
- Limited Bandwidth and Speed – You get what you pay for.
- Pay Money to Move Your Website – “Got an influx of Pinterest traffic and our server can’t handle it? Great! You can move your blog for a nominal fee!”– See what’s happening here, bloggers?
- No True Domain Name – Nothing looks less trustworthy to me than an article with a url like politicaltruths.blogspot.com. With most free hosts, you don’t get a full domain name. Plus, the host we use comes with a free domain name!
- Customer Support – It’s hard to have great customer support when running free websites. Most of the support for these websites ranges from abysmal to non-existent.
- Much more, but I feel like you’re getting the point…
There’s no such thing as a free lunch.
In other words, free hosting is not for you want these things:
- A fast website
- Good customer service.
- Full control over how your blog looks without paying extra
- The ability to get a large audience to your website
- A business and not just a blog
- No unsolicited ads
- Your own domain name
- A successful blog
Soooooo… like… pretty much everybody???
The question is… What platform should you use?
Why WordPress.org is the best blogging platform
We start by selecting your blogging platform BEFORE selecting a host, because only after you know what platform you want to use should you get a matching host.
Here are the basics in this blog hosting review of why every newbie should use WordPress.org to self-host their own blog. There’s a reason 75.6 million bloggers use the platform.
It’s something you need to learn.
Ok, that’s pretty compelling… Why else?
Especially those of you new to blogging, WordPress is not going anywhere.
Yes, it may be a little scary jumping in feet first to self-hosting your own blog, but I really regret every second I wasted on other “free” platforms (Wix and others). They robbed me of the precious time that I should have spent mastering WordPress.
It’s the most powerful blogging platform, ever.
As you grow into becoming a better blogger, you’re going to want certain features, capabilities, blogging tools, and just general awesomeness not provided by other platforms. Most bloggers usually run into this exact problem:
They start by using a different blogging platform other than WordPress, hear about a cool new plugin or feature PERFECT for their audience, and realize they cannot use it because it’s only offered on WordPress.
It sucks but is likely going to happen if you go elsewhere.
It has a clean content editor.
The content editor for WordPress just got upgraded again (it was already dope)! It’s incredibly easy to use, edit, and publish beautiful blog posts.
You’ll have resources for days.
Because millions of bloggers use Wordpress, support forums and free WordPress training are beyond abundant on Youtube and other platforms. New and easy to use resources will always be there for your taking.
It’s the blogging platform we use to run our six-figure blog, Avocadu.com. It’s what every blog professional I know uses and is the GOAT (Greatest of All Time) when it comes to creating blogs and websites. I hope I made a compelling argument to use WordPress because now we are going to look at the actual host you should use…
Top 4 blog hosting sites rated and reviewed from experience
We have personally used all of these, and here is our experience with them for our blog hosting review:
Host Gator: Spent a good amount of time using this service in the beginning of my journey with online entrepreneurship. Found the site speed particularly slow and everything quite overrated. 3.5/5
WP Engine: Good service, but the backend is a little more complex than need be. For a beginner, this can be a real time sink. 4/5
Siteground: Service was fine UNTIL we started doing well. Then everything went to sh%$. They wanted us to pay an extra $300/month to handle the influx of traffic we were receiving. More on that in a bit… 3/5
Bluehost: By far the best and most reliable service we have used (and somehow also the most affordable). It’s easy to use and set up and the customer support is GREAT!
Why 850,000+ bloggers use Bluehost to run their blogs
And our NIGHTMARE story with an alternate host…
For the next step in this blog hosting review, let’s talk about 8 reasons we love Bluehost…
Bluehost really saved us in a pinch.
Our website just kept crashing… Every evening when we had higher amounts of traffic to our website (because most U.S. Pinterest users were home from work), it would basically blow up for an hour.
We were losing sales and loyal readers by the minute because nothing was working…
The website would literally just be completely crashed. I did literally EVERYTHING I could think of to fix it to no avail.
Finally, I decided to give a call to Bluehost. I explained everything that was going wrong and how desperate I was for help. The rep I talked to was ridiculously helpful.
They walked me through everything that was happening, why it was happening, assuring me they could fix it, and I ended up signing up for the service that night.
After we went through the pain of moving our website to a different host, everything immediately got better.
Thank god we moved because literally the next week something amazing happened… The next week, we had 97,000 people visit our website in a single day and made over $40,000 in a single month because of it.
If we had still been with our old host, the server would have failed and it would have ended up costing an insane amount of money.
This is EXACTLY why I am so passionate about new bloggers getting set up correctly.
You never know what can happen.
Bluehost really is perfect for new bloggers.
Setup is simple, easy to understand, helpful. As a newbie, you’ve got tons of stuff to learn, and the last thing you want to be doing is spending all your time wondering how to navigate your host’s backend.
They have 24-hour customer support.
Got or problem or need some help? Great! Go here, click “chat,” and talk to a trained rep 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
You’re never alone in this thing with Bluehost.
You can call them and speak with a native English speaker.
Getting website help from someone who is not a native English speaker, for me, is like trying to type a message with sausages for fingers. (It’s frustrating my friends.) Calling and being able to speak with someone in the States for me is an incredibly underrated delight.
It has one-click WordPress installation.
So easy a blindfolded baby could do it. Trust me, it’s not so easy on other websites to hunt things down on some external cpanel, hoping you don’t break your website in the process. Remember Bluehost and WordPress are best buds!
You can have unlimited domain names, blogs, and email addresses.
This comes with most hosts, but it’s worth being said. Have a party and install as many websites as you like!
It’s easy to create your own customized email addresses for your domain.
It’s really underrated how simple Bluehost makes everything. To compare, this process took me an hour or more with my old host, and I had to put in a support ticket to get it taken care of. It took me just a few minutes to create the email address [email protected] with Bluehost.
Installing WordPress with Bluehost can be done in 10 minutes.
I mean, for real I do it on this video in close to 10 minutes.
. It may take you a little longer as I am familiar with the website, but it’s definitely possible.
Starting a blog today with WordPress is incredibly simple and easy to do.
To wrap up this blog hosting review, let’s summarize how to get started:
Step 1. Click here and go to Bluehost.
Step 2. Open our post on How to Start a Successful Blog (opens in a new window), and we will walk you through every step. You can also just follow along with the Youtube video above.
Step 3. Have your blog set up TODAY!
If you enjoyed this article on blog hosting or have any questions for us, please leave them in the comment section below! We’d love to hear from you!