Much like web site hosting, a blog host is responsible for getting your words into cyberspace. A quick Google search will show you the huge number of services wanting to host your blog – some are free, and others charge you for the privilege.
A number have glowing reputations, such as Blogger, Wordpress or Live Journal, whilst others aren’t as familiar. However, the name isn’t as important as what they do. You want a company that can get Your Blog up there and make sure it stays up – that is, there’s no down time when your blog isn’t available to readers.
What to Look forAgain, like web hosting, reliability is the most important factor. Obviously, if you’re not paying for a service, you have no real right to complain. With paid services, though, it’s a different matter (and you’ll soon discover that blog hosting isn’t expensive; it’s doubtful you’ll need to pay more than £3 a month), so don’t be afraid to ask for statistics. Security is something else to consider – the last thing you want to deal with is someone hacking into and changing your blog.
What kind of technical support does the host offer? A good one will offer plenty, so check on that; if there’s a problem, you want to be able to deal with it immediately. There should also be access to the statistics of how many people are reading your blog, and the process for readers to leave comments for you should be simple.
You want something that’s easy to use. An ideal situation would be to log in, write your entry, then click to publish. Many do offer that, so when you’re looking for a host, check into the ease of publishing.Are you likely to want to add pictures to you blog? If so, make sure it’s possible and easy to do. Jumping through hoops to achieve that simply makes you hate the idea of sitting down to make an entry, and that’s the last thing you want.
Talk to other bloggers, find out what service they use and how happy they are with the results. Take that into account when selecting your host.
On a Budget?There are so many free hosts these days that it’s simple to set up a blog with free hosting. You’ll find, too, that most hosts can simply transfer your blog from other hosts with a minimum of fuss and readily use whatever platform (or tool) you currently use (which makes your life a lot easier).
Another RouteYou can also host a blogging service from your own site. Companies like Bloghoster make that possible. Of course, it requires a certain technical ability to set up, and you have to pay for a licence, but it can make you the centre of a community on topics relating to your book. However, be prepared to invest some time and work into this; it’s not for those who only have a few spare minutes.
That’s not for everyone, and requires real determination. It’s simpler to blog elsewhere and add a link from your site. If you’re one for blogging on the run, use a host where you can blog from your mobile – it’s becoming more common.