My Self-Hosted Fairytale ft. Siteground

My Self-Hosted Fairytale ft. Siteground

Just the thought of going self-hosted can be pretty daunting to say the least, with wondering where to actually start being the main concern. If you read my most recent post you’ll have seen that I went self-hosted just last weekend via Siteground so I’ve now mastered the art of self-hostedness (well at least the most significant aspects). For this reason I thought it would only be right to share my experience, pointing out some of the well known parts of the process, and some I hadn’t really considered and would now call a major piece of advice for anyone wanting to take their blog to the next level.

Firstly, why go self-hosted? It’s perfectly okay to remain as wordpress.com or blogspot.co.uk, or whatever free hosting site you are currently on, but after a while, I myself felt quite restricted in what I could do, how my blog came across to my readers, and in particular how it came across to any PRs and professionals who had stumbled upon my page. I wanted my own domain, the .wordpress.com wasn’t doing it for me anymore and I felt it wasn’t something I could truly call my own. From my perspective, having my own domain seemed a lot more personal and professional, as did the thought of purchasing a sophisticated theme which would make my blog all the more appealing to the eyes.

To go ahead with it all, you must know the ins and outs of what you’re signing up for, and how it all works. For this reason, I had read pages upon pages of posts by bloggers on the process of going self-hosted and even after doing my research I still had many unanswered questions, with the price being the main thing that held me back from taking the plunge a lot sooner than now. Some well known hosting sites range from Bluehost to GoDaddy to FastComet, and then there’s Siteground, and through reading numerous posts, this was the one that repeatedly came up, but even then I was still hesitant. The only advice I can give for picking a site to go self-hosted with is, don’t jump straight into the deep end at the first site you see, make sure you do your research as there are many different hosting sites out there offering different plans, and at different prices, so make sure to pick the one that fits your blog and the features you are after.

Coming back to the monetary side of things, you must bear in mind that going self-hosted can be pretty pricey, with the cost of purchasing a domain, the self-hosted plan itself, a theme and any additional add ons making the pounds pile up. This is why I’d recommend holding off until there are any specific deal days such as on Boxing Day or Black Friday. I planned on going self-hosted with Siteground on Black Friday as I knew that they were offering 70% off their regular price for newbies, compared to the 60% discount that they usually offer. That meant I would be paying £2.05 a month for my self-hosted plan, compared to the normal £2.95. You may currently be saying to yourself “but Holly you’re only saving yourself 90p a month“, which is true…but 90p a month for 12 months adds up, to £10.80 exactly so take advantage of any deal you find as any money your saving could go towards purchasing a theme or buying an additional add on. The first year of blogging is always the cheapest and after that it can almost double, so SAVE SAVE SAVE in your first year.

I chose Siteground to go self-hosted with and went for the start-up plan which is the most basic plan, only because I didn’t want to complicate matters more for myself, and I felt for going self-hosted for the first time this had everything that I currently needed. However, there are 3 different types of self-hosting plans so have a look at what they all offer and choose one based on its suitability to your blogging needs. The next step after that was registering my new domain (thankfully mines wasn’t already taken), and because I went with .com this cost me £9.95. This was pretty exciting as I knew that having my own domain would make me feel all the more confident about posting my link across all of my Social Media sites.

The most daunting part of the process is transferring everything to your new site, but Siteground has a live chat which can provide you with a great deal of help, or you can do what I did…use Pipdig’s amazing migration service. The green eyed monster can appear whenever you compare your blog to another individuals, and prior to going self-hosted I had gotten into the habit of comparing mine to others. Through constant comparing the one difference I noticed between my blog and that of well-known bloggers is the difference in how our blogs looked, they had purchased their own theme and I was using a free one which really wasn’t up to much. All the themes I became fond of were coming from the one place…Pipdig, a website dedicated to professional blog and website design, and it was through that, that I found out about their migration service. Pipdig have an affiliate link for Siteground, whereby if you purchase a self-hosted plan from Siteground and then a theme from Pipdig, they will migrate your blog completely FREE OF CHARGE! This free service includes installation of WordPress, the transferring of all your posts, comments, subscribers and followers, and installing your gorgeous new theme. The lovely Phil over at Pipdig had my blog set up that very same day (it states it can take up to 5 days so boy was it quick) meaning I could spend that weekend playing around with my layout and tweaking things here and there to be blog ready.

*MAJOR PIECE OF ADVICE* Terms and conditions are a part of everything in life (although as humans we have a bad habit of ticking the agree box without even reading them, just admit it), but I’d advise you to read them. This is when my MAJOR recommendation comes in if you’re planning on going self-hosted. When you purchase a public domain, your personal details such as your name, address and phone number are stored on the ICANN WHOIS domain database for anyone to see, which unfortunately means you’re likely to receive constant spam. You can stop this from happening however by purchasing Domain ID Protect on Siteground, which costs an additional £9 and means your domain is privately registered. I didn’t purchase this until 2 days after I went self-hosted, and even in that 2 days numerous individuals had stored my details resulting in a whole lot of spam emails and constant calls from the likes of your mum, dad and uncle, coming from as far as India and America. So, if you’re going self-hosted, I’d recommend purchasing this add on right from the outset to prevent you being inundated with spam like I was, although since I purchased the Domain ID protect it’s calmed down drastically so it’s definitely worth the £9, either purchase that or change your number.

Well that’s my little guide for going self-hosted done after lots of you lovely bloggers asked a post to be written up on it, I know it’s a lengthy post but I wanted to make I covered absolutely everything. The final thing I should say is that any of you can go self-hosted, don’t think that you need hundreds of thousands of followers and views, if you feel it’s the right time to take the next step in your blogging journey then go for it. I’m actually at that point where I’m pretty proud of A Daily Dose of Holly so I don’t regret my decision to go self-hosted at all, and I hope you all like the new look. Have you considered going self-hosted at all, or if you already are self-hosted, what tips would you give to anyone thinking of taking the plunge? If I’ve left anything out or you have any questions then please leave a comment below.

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45 Comments

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 7:00 pm

      Mines doesn’t either but it’s just something I had wanted to do for a while in hope that it will increase my audience/views x

  1. December 2, 2017 / 12:39 pm

    Thank you so much this was so helpful. I’d love to go self hosted but the whole process looked so confusing and I was reading so many different posts so wasn’t sure which way to go. Now I definitely think I’ll use siteground and pig dip so thanks for your advice because it was so clear and detailed.

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:59 pm

      Thank you for reading this post, I’m glad it’s helped. I was in the exact same position as you but it’s definitely not as confusing as it seems. I’d recommend doing it through Pipdig and it’s one less stress since they do the migration for you x

  2. December 2, 2017 / 4:18 pm

    I’m so glad to see this post. I’ve just started my new blog and wanted to go self hosted. This has really helped me make up my mind. Thank you for sharing x

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:58 pm

      Thanks so much, I’m glad it’s helped you x

  3. Meera BP
    December 2, 2017 / 5:21 pm

    I dont think I could go self hosted yet as i font get enough views, but this is interesting to bear in mind for the future!

    LoneTeenTraveller | Travel Fashion Lifestyle

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:58 pm

      Views aren’t everything, I don’t get hundreds of views but I wanted to give it a go. Do it when you feel it’s right for you but views aren’t everything, if you have good content and enjoy what you do then that’s the main thing! X

  4. December 2, 2017 / 5:43 pm

    I have done this with pipdig and I am sooo glad I done it! It was such an easy process because they are so helpful! I love having my own domain now. This is a good informative post for people who are thinking of going self hosted! xx

    louiselovesbeauty.com

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:57 pm

      The Pipdig migration service is amazing, it saved me a lot of time and stress doing it myself. Thanks so much xx

  5. December 2, 2017 / 5:49 pm

    I really want to go Self Hosted and I think I will be in the new year. This post is so helpful, thank you so much!xo

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:57 pm

      You should keep your eye out for any Boxing Day deals! Good luck when the times comes x

  6. Chloe Bellamy
    December 2, 2017 / 5:55 pm

    I’ve been self hosted for a little while and I couldn’t imagine going back now! It’s definitely worth it when you’re ready to take the next step with your blog and further establish yourself in the eyes of other bloggers and companies. I do wish I’d had a post like this when I was moving over though, it would have made it so much easier! Chloe x

    http://www.yourschloe.co.uk

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:57 pm

      It’s great isn’t it? Although I feel like I’ve sort of started all over again but it’s a fresh start so I’m hoping it only goes onwards and upwards from here. Thanks for reading Chloe x

  7. December 2, 2017 / 5:58 pm

    This is such a helpful post! Thanks for sharing! I have been trying to do as much research as I can about going self-hosted! Xo

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:56 pm

      That’s good you’ve been doing your research, it definitely makes a big difference when you know the ins and outs. Thanks for reading x

  8. December 2, 2017 / 5:59 pm

    I’ve always wanted to go self hosted but I’m not constant in blogging and I feel like it’d go to waste, but this is really helpful 🙂

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:55 pm

      You could always make the move when you feel is right for you! Thanks for reading!

  9. December 2, 2017 / 6:54 pm

    I am planning to go self hosted and have seen a couple of people use site ground so I may use it as well! Thank you for the helpful post and tips! x

    • Holly
      Author
      December 2, 2017 / 6:55 pm

      It’s a site so many bloggers use and I’ve heard nothing but good things about it so that’s a plus! Thanks for reading x

  10. December 2, 2017 / 8:37 pm

    This post is super helpful, thanks for sharing! I actually wanted to ask you if you also purchased the ‘SG Site Scanner’ as i noticed it costs a lot but i’m not too sure if it’s useful! Great post! xx

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:26 pm

      Thank you for reading! That is another recommended add on, I have something similar to it which is good, so it’s entirely up to you if you feel it’s necessary for your blog xx

  11. December 2, 2017 / 9:02 pm

    I also went self hosted on august and it was the best decision i’ve ever made since i started blogging. I don’t have a big audience but im sure that being self hosted is helping me to grow my blog.
    Love your blog so much! Subscribed
    Much love,
    Sima x
    http://www.styleglint.com

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:26 pm

      I don’t regret the decision at all, and I may not have the biggest audience compared to that of WELL known bloggers but that doesn’t matter, I feel I’m taking the right steps to growing my blog like you said! Thank you so much for subscribing x

  12. December 2, 2017 / 9:42 pm

    I went self-hosted not long after I started my blog and I didn’t regret it at all. I went with Go Daddy because it was so popular and lots of people recommended it. I’m not going to lie I didn’t ready the terms and conditions but I’ve got better at that now haha.

    Like you I chose Pipdigs migrantion service and it was the best thing, really easy to do and Phil was amazing. I moved over from Blogger you wordpress and it was well worth it, I have so much freedom to edit and personalise my blog.

    I would recommend to anyone to go self-hosted as it does look professional and you’re taken more seriously I think.

    Great post, thanks for sharing your experience!

    Kim
    http://www.sincerelykimberly.com
    Xxx

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:28 pm

      I’ve heard Go Daddy are good too, are you enjoying them so far?

      The Pipdig service is just brilliant and Phil is totally awesome at what he does. It’s a quick move right?!

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts x

  13. December 2, 2017 / 9:54 pm

    Love this post – I felt so many of the same things as you when I went self-hosted, it’s SO daunting. This is such a good post for anyone thinking of taking the very exciting plunge! Glad it all worked out well for you:) xxxx

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:28 pm

      Thank you! It’s a HUGE step so pretty nerve wracking but worth it all in the end. Thanks lovely xxx

  14. December 3, 2017 / 3:33 am

    Great post and very informative but I definitely have a question. I to am going selfhosted and I to went with siteground. I did this like 2 months ago. My one question is did you have to map your domain from site ground with WordPress? ?
    Thanks 🙂
    That is what I’m currently dealing with.

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:29 pm

      Thank you! Hmm can you explain a wee bit more what you mean? It’s just because I didn’t do the migration service so not sure what the process what but if you explain a bit more I may know 🙂 x

  15. December 3, 2017 / 9:02 am

    Couldn’t have stumbled across this at a better time! I’m looking into going self-hosted in the new year but haven’t had time yet to properly do my research! I’m glad you mentioned boxing day sales as I may aim to get it done then now!- https://sophiehearts.net x

    • Holly
      Author
      December 3, 2017 / 11:10 am

      Thanks for reading! Doing research is highly recommended, just have a look at the different hosting sites and find what suits you, but I do highly recommend Siteground! Best of luck when the time comes x

  16. December 3, 2017 / 11:03 am

    I am new to the whole blogging scene as my blog is only two months old, however this is something I will definitely be looking into once I’ve found my feet and gained confidence with my blog 🙂 x

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:25 pm

      Good luck with your new blog, you’ll find your feet fast and come to absolutely love it. Thanks for reading x

  17. December 3, 2017 / 11:19 am

    Grear post. Very informative 😆 thank you!

    BTW I found you via a Twitter shout out! I follow!

    Have a great weekend!

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:24 pm

      Thanks for reading it! I’m glad you came across my Twitter. Have a good week x

  18. December 3, 2017 / 8:57 pm

    Great post! This is something I’ve recently considered, but the price aspect is definitely putting me off a little. I think I’ll wait to see if I can grow my blog a little more before taking the plunge, but I’ll definitely head back to your post when I’m ready too! x

    • Holly
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 8:23 pm

      The price aspect can definitely be a deal breaker for some people. Only time will tell, good luck when you get round to doing it x

  19. This helped me a lot!! I have heard of siteground but it’s a little pricey for me at the moment so I’m going to go with some other recommendations & do bluehost. The reason I am taking the plunge is because I won a free theme in a giveaway & I can’t use it until I’m self-hosted so I thought what better time than now, right?
    Really appreciate you writing this! It helped me a lot!

    • Holly
      Author
      December 7, 2017 / 8:01 am

      I’m glad it helped you, thanks for taking the time to read it. Yeah that was my thought too in the beginning, that’s why I waited for a deal day to save a bit wherever I could. That’s amazing, congrats! Let me know when your site is up and running and I’ll be sure to check it out x

  20. December 28, 2017 / 10:12 am

    Did you find Siteground via WordPress? Or did you go on their page independantly? Xx

    • Holly
      Author
      December 28, 2017 / 10:20 am

      I found out about Siteground via bloggers, but when I actually signed up to go self hosted I done it through siteground independently xx

  21. January 25, 2018 / 11:49 pm

    Thank you so much for writing this post! 😄 I have been worried about going self-hosted and am slowly coming around to the idea now as I know it’s something i really want to do sometime next year. I think I will go with pipdig too as they sound brilliant. Are you still able to use the WordPress app since going self-hosted? And did you find that your posts automatically go up in the reader (I always see them but wonder did you have to make them do that)? Sorry for the questions! 🙈❤

    • Holly
      Author
      February 6, 2018 / 8:55 pm

      No problem at all, thank you so much for reading it! You should definitely do it whenever you feel ready to take the next step. Pipdig are really good and if you have ANY problem Phil over at Pipdig is always there to help. Yeah I use the wordpress app all the time when I’m out of the house, which is a bonus. My posts still appear on wordpress reader as I can see that I get views from that, Phil from Pipdig set everything up so not sure if he had to organise that or whether it happens automatically x

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