I might be crazy but how does 30 days of blogging tips and mom hacks sound? I have a ton of awesome content about how to become a blogger while also being a stay at home mom or working mother. It’s not easy but it’s totally possible. And it’s time for Day 8, where I share the only blogging expenses you should have when first starting out.
Also, this post contains affiliate links. You can read my Disclaimer here for more info, but be rest assured that I never recommend something I wouldn’t sell to my own grandmother. ;)
There are two questions that I know many people ask before they start a blog: (1) 'Can I really make money blogging?' and (2) 'How much does it cost to start a blog?' Today I am going to break down for you the cost of blogging when you are just starting out.
But, don't worry, I won't leave you hanging on the first question. When you finish learning about the blogging expenses you can head over to the Allison Lindstrom YouTube channel to subscribe and find out how I made $1,300 in one day!
Be prepared to spend a little money
Before you start your blog, you should spend a little bit of time to sitting down and budgeting for the blogging expenses you are about to have. If you want to start a blogging business, it's going to cost you a little bit of money. Now, it’s very little money (relative to other businesses you could choose to start) but it's still something you need to be prepared for.
There are free blogging platforms that you could start on like blogger.com, blogspot.com, or wordpress.com. BUT, I've said it before and I'll say it again—I don't recommend that. When you use free platforms like those listed you don't own the content that you put on the site. You get what you pay for and if you don't pay for anything you basically don't own any of it.
If you want the efforts you are making to be a serious endeavor then you need to commit to it. This involves investing both your time and money. But, before you jump right in and start spending money it's important you understand the difference between the cost of blogging that is required to get up and running, and the cost of everything else.
If you are in the situation that I was in when I started there are a lot of "nonblogging" things that your money needs to go to, like food and diapers. The good news is there are only two areas you need to focus on spending money when starting a new blog.
The two blog expenses to focus on
There are a lot of other things that you can spend money on like creating a logo, website design, and marketing efforts, but all of that is unnecessary when you are just starting out. It's nice to have, but you really don't need it, especially in the first couple of months when you don't have the budget for it.
2. Your Domain
A domain is your URL. It will look like [yourblogname].com. If you don't pay for a domain and use one of the free options discussed above it would look like [yourblogname].wordpress.com. Can you see the difference? If you want to present yourself as a professional blogger (that is, building a blogging business) you really need your own domain.
There are many different places where you can purchase your domain. Many new bloggers automatically think of places like GoDaddy (it’s where I buy a lot of my domains from too), but there are plenty of others to choose from.
My advice is to compare prices between a few places to see where you can get the best deal. The total cost of purchasing a domain is going to depend on the domain you are selecting, where you are purchasing it from, and the length of time you are purchasing it for. The longer the term you choose, the cheaper the breakdown of the price is.
2. Your hosting
Your hosting is what you pay to have your website on the internet. You can think of it like paying rent to have your website located on the internet. You may own the domain, but if you don't have hosting you have nowhere to set up your website. There are tons of hosting sites that you can choose (here’s who I recommend)!
If you have decided that you want to use WordPress then you will most likely need to pay an annual fee for hosting. I have yet to find a host for WordPress that provides a monthly payment plan that is reasonable for a new blogger.
To get affordable hosting you need to commit to at least a year of hosting. I'm not going to lie, that can really stink when you are just starting out!
If you are looking for an affordable option that allows you to pay monthly, Squarespace is a good option. And if you decide to go with Squarespace and pay for annual hosting, you actually get one domain for free. (At the time of this post, this offer is still valid. But make sure to check into the details of what's included before signing up.) If you choose to go with the monthly option, it is reasonable and something most bloggers can easily fit into their monthly budget.
The cost of being a blogger
I'm sure you've heard the saying, "You need to spend money to make money," and it's completely true. If you want to start a blog for free you can, but you won't be able to turn it into a blogging business until you start investing money into it. But, remember the only two expenses to really focus on in the beginning (especially if you are on a budget!) are your domain and hosting.
If you are interested in finding out more about what unexpected blogging expenses could pop up, you can check out this blog post here! In this post, I share the information about the expenses that came along and caught me off guard that I didn't feel anyone else was talking about in the blogging community.
And don’t forget- your expenses don't matter as much as your content. So, once you have your domain and hosting set up, you need to start writing and getting your content out there. That is the most important thing when starting a blog!