Hey dolls! For those of you that have been following my blog for a long time, you will have probably noticed the changes my blog has undergone over the last few months. I had been thinking about re-designing my blog and having my own self hosted site on WordPress for the longest time but with being so uninformed and not so tech savvy I kept putting it off, that was until I was contacted by Self Hosted who are a company that provide easy and affordable web hosting for bloggers as well as providing certain packages targeted at entrepreneurs and small businesses.
So this post is going to give you guys a brief run down of my experience with Self Hosted as well as how I've found the whole move over to WordPress. I'll try to keep it as succinct and informative as I can because I really don't want to bore you guys.
The process itself was fairly easy and the first thing I did was obtain my domain name which I also got from Self Hosted (£9.99 + £1.49 for privacy per year) and then I placed my order with a request to migrate my existing blog which was on Blogspot at the time to WordPress. Self Hosted packages come with free migration from other Cpanel hosts but for a limited time there was also an offer on free migration for blogs on Blogspot and WordPress.com and this is the offer that I took advantage of.
Once the hosting account was set up and all the relevant informtion was sent over to Self Hosted, the transfer began. The process itself did not take long but there were a few little bumps in the road involved in the migration and redirection and these mostly were to do with my images but they were all issues which were eventually fixed and now I couldn't be happier with my blog.
The service I received from Self hosted was second to none and they were with me every step of the way helping me with any problems that arose as well with getting accustomed to the site with me being fairly new to WordPress. Communication was great and they always made sure to give me as much information as possible so that I too could get accustomed with certain areas and know how to fix certain things if there was ever a need for it. They also sent me some reading materials which helped greatly with the transition and I really appreciated this level of attentiveness to detail in the service they provided. They didn't just do everything and then send me on my way which I thought was awesome.
In terms of performance, I have no complaints. Self Hosted is a certified Cloudflare partner which is a great because it boosts my site's performance and as a result my website is fast, responsive and easy to navigate for my readers which was a big point for me in making the leap to being self hosted. During the years I used blogger I was fairly happy with the work I produced but I did certainly felt limited with how much I could do but now that I have moved to WordPress I have been able to do so much more with my blog and make a more pleasant reading experience for my readers and visitors.
I also like having all the widgets and plugins easily available to me as well as having SEO features that even novices like me can use and understand because I have been able to utilise these tools and ensure that my content gets the maximum exposure it can possibly get which has helped tremendously in growing my blog these last few months. I just love my website now and I love how easily I can add and remove certain features and tailor it to exactly how I want it. I honestly couldn't be happier.
To give my blog the extra oomph and finish I wanted that made it unique to me I also looked into getting a new blog header and the one I have currently is from an artist that I found on an App/website called Fiverr. Fiverr is basically an online market place with hundreds of categories including graphics and design, writing, illustrations, translations and much much more and the process of obtaining my header was so easy and straight forward. All I had to do was browse through various illustrators/artists and once I found the one I liked I explained my vision and the Artist executed it and delivered it to me once the work was completed. If there were any modifications to be made I had the option to ask at this stage but if I was happy, Fiverr released payment to complete the transaction. The Artist I used was a talented lady from Canada who's username on Fiverr is Viyiwi and I was 1000% happy with what she produced. If you're ever looking for something along the same lines for your blog or business cards I definitely recommend checking out Fiverr as there's loads of talented artists on there who can execute your vision at an affordable price.
Self Hosted's packages are very affordable, especially for penny pinching bloggers like myself. The packages are priced as follows; £49.90 for one year, two years at £71.82 or a pay monthly package for £3.99 per month so there are are a few options to suit different needs and levels of financial flexibility. Self Hosted also have special offers such as; pay for one year and get 2 months free (that's a 17% saving in comparison to paying for the package monthly) or pay for two years and get six months free (25% saving). So not only can you get affordable hosting but you can also make some serious savings depending on what you go for.
In summary I have had a very pleasant experience with my move over to WordPress and becoming self hosted and I seriously have not looked back. The move wasn't without it's little bumps in the road here and there but with great support from Self Hosted it all turned out great. I would definitely recommend using them if you're thinking of becoming self hosted especially if you're a blogger like me as they have a tailor made package just for bloggers as I mentioned earlier. A few other tips I can give you are; make sure to do your research prior to making the decision to become self hosted in terms of who to use and what it will cost you. I would also recommend asking other people who have made the transition for their experiences just to make sure you manage your expectations accordingly and finally if you're like me and are not so tech savvy don't attempt to do it yourself but rather find someone or a company who gives you complete confidence that they will take care of everything for you.
I hope this post has helped you if you have been thinking about becoming self hosted and moving over to WordPress. I'm not the best on elaborating on these types of topics (give me a fashion question any day) but I hope that I have managed to shed some light on what to expect in telling you guys about my experience. I've also added a quick video for you guys to check out that talks about Self hosted and what they do. If you guys have any questions that I haven't addressed please feel free to ask in the comments below and I'll do my best to provide an answer. I know it was a long one but thanks for sticking with me if you made it to the end and I hope it was helpful. Toodles!