Why I Decided Not to Self-Host My Blog After All

Why I Decided Not to Self-Host My Blog After All graphicA little while ago I posted this announcement on my blog saying that I would soon be making the transition to self-host my blog. Although I have given my blog a bit of a makeover since then (like the new background and header?) I still have yet to make the switch to self-hosting. And in the near future, I’m not going to.

Why, you ask? Here’s the story:

I’ve wanted to self-host my blog for the longest time, but I didn’t think about actually doing so until very recently. I’ve only used the free wordpress.com to host this blog and I was feeling a little constricted by the limited amount of things you can actually do with it. After spending time reading other blogs and admiring their gorgeous designs and fun layouts, I admit that I did come down with a little case of blog envy. I started to think, Why can’t my blog look amazing like that? And then I realized: it could!

Thus, I set out to self-host my blog using a combination of Bluehost and wordpress.org. Setting it all up took quite some time to figure out, but once I did it was pretty easy to do.

At first I was ecstatic- there were so many options, so many choices! I could now download awesome themes from the internet and customize them any way I please. I had so much fun designing my blog and experimenting with different designs and layouts, and I loved the flexibility I had with everything.

However, my enthusiasm began to slow when I started installing and working with various plugins, which is how everything is managed behind the scenes on self-hosted blogs. I’m accustomed to only using simple widgets and letting wordpress.com do the rest, and the sudden rush of technological things I now had to do was sort of overwhelming. For example, I had to find a plug-in that would allow me to automatically post all of my posts to social media whenever they were uploaded. There are several other functions that I would have to use plug-ins for that wordpress.com automatically did for me, and it seemed like more of a hassle than it was really worth.

Although I did really like the options I had when it came to customizing and designing the appearance of my blog, ultimately the more advanced technological aspect of it caused me to go back to my normal way of blogging. I’m sure that if I read or watched some tutorials it would all make more sense, but right now I’m just too busy with school and the end of my senior year to sit down and really begin to understand everything. Perhaps I’ll try self-hosting again in the future, but for right now I’m happy to stay blogging the way I am!

This is not to say that self-hosting is bad- it’s definitely the way to go if you know what you’re doing!

How has your experience been with self-hosting? Let me know in the comments section below!



11 thoughts on “Why I Decided Not to Self-Host My Blog After All

  1. You should check out Ashley at Nose Graze, she has tons of themes and plugins available and offers full support with her hosting options. If I ever decide to self-host, she’s who I’m using. For me, the issue is the financial commitment to be honest as opposed to anything else, and right now I can’t justify it. If/when I can, I’m going with Ashley 100%.


  2. I can definitely see how it would be overwhelming. I just switched to self-hosting last June, and I would probably have been lost without the help of my boyfriend, who builds websites for a living. (I’m actually still asking him questions all the time.)

    I second Rachel; if you decide you want to try moving the self-hosting again in the future, Nose Graze is a fantastic resource!


  3. Man I thought you already became self-hosted (nutfreenerd.com instead of nutfreenerd.wordpress.com) but it seems like that’s not it. WordPress.com is great isn’t it? It takes care of a lot of things I didn’t even know I could do – and yeah self-hosting must mean being a technical whizz. Keep going though, the new look looks goooood. 😀


  4. I totally understand where you’re coming from. I would love to self-host but I know absolutely nothing about coding or plug-ins, etc. and I don’t really want to spend the money for help to make it beautiful! I’m going to college for graphic design in the near future and plan to take some coding classes on the side, so maybe then I’ll make the leap! But I really like your blog as it is now, so don’t worry. But I TOTALLY get blog envy. 😛


  5. This makes total sense. My blog is not currently self-hosted, but my writing website is. I just recently got it self-hosted (as in, within the past week), and I’m definitely overwhelmed. Would I love to self-host my blog? Absolutely. But I’m not going to until I am completely comfortable with self-hosting since my blog has a wider, more public audience.


  6. Hi Holly!

    I’ve been in the same position as you before I ever created my own website. I have had my own domain name since 2008 and I have not regretted it once.

    After reading your blog I wanted to share a post that I shared in our HCNB group 🙂 This may help the next time you decide to make your own self-hosted website. And I promise you won’t be disappointed.

    Creating a website is creating an asset. Are you familiar with HTML/CSS, cPanels? If not, I’d probably recommend SquareSpace over WordPress. WordPress is a more advanced version of SquareSpace. SquareSpace gives you the ability to make it look however you want it visually, without having to worry about HTML/CSS. WordPress I recommend for people who are more willing to learn how to code their own website to make it look more professional (not that SquareSpace isn’t professional). It also relies on a ton of plug-ins and most of the time a lot of the available plugins are out of date or not compatible due to it’s open source feature. I used to be great at HTML and designed websites, but after being out of it with no time to learn it all over again my coworkers at Apple recommended SquareSpace. I have not regretted my decision of moving from my own hosted WordPress.org site to SquareSpace. SquareSpace starts at $8 a month (or $96 annually). It also allows eCommerce for all types of sites whereas WordPress requires the business version for $299. I use SquareSpace for my website, feel free to check it out. If you want more info I can tell you more or even give you a tour of what it looks like behind the scenes. http://kwinsturr.com Good luck! (I’ve never used Blogger so I can’t say anything about it)

    Best of luck, Quynh. ❤


  7. I’ve had a really great experience self-hosting, but I thank GoDaddy’s support team for much of that. The plug-ins can get confusing, and the worry of ruining the site was always huge. GoDaddy let me have more fun learning to do it because they could always bring the site back to what it was before. I hope you have a better experience if/when you try again!

    Julia, http://www.ohjuliaann.com


  8. I can totally understand where you’re coming from. When I made the switch, it took me well over a month to put together how I wanted it to look, and another month or so (separated by several months) to get comfortable with the plugins I wanted to use / needed to find. There’s a big difference switching from wordpress.com! The most overwhelming part for me was figuring out how to transfer stats and followers. The most important thing is being comfortable with where you’re at 🙂

    ~ Liza @ Classy Cat Books


  9. I completely understand what you’re describing as I had similar concerns when I was considering self hosting.

    This was of course before I spoke to my friend and photographer who recommended squarespace. After doing some research I decided squarespace was the right option for me.

    I have been self hosting now for a month and I absolutely love it! I don’t have to worry about Plugins anymore 😄


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