One of the topics I see popping up in blogger chats and the various blogging groups I’m a part of is owning your blog domain and whether its worth doing/if they’re hard to configure.
The concept of configuring a domain name itself can seem like a daunting task, especially you’re not exactly a technical wizard. The truth is that it doesn’t take a genius or a bulging bank balance to configure your very own .com or .co.uk for your blog. Don’t worry, I got you on this. Due to the fact that I once had 18 domain names under my waist cinching belt I often find myself being the tech gal for a number of friends and bloggy buddies when they’ve ventured into their first .com purchase.
So why should you own your own domain?
First and foremost, you can’t afford not you. There seems to be a misconstrued idea that to own your own domain means that you need to have pockets like Mark Zuckerberg. Not true. In reality they cost less than your daily coffee. Even when I was first snapping up domains left, right and center in the early nighties the most I’d pay for a .com was £15.99. Nowadays you can pick up a domain for as little as a quid. A QUID. It’s hardly worth thinking about.
Lets face it, having your own domain just makes you look more professional especially if you’re intending to eventually work with companies and brands. I always think of being a blogger as being a brand. You have your own USP, your own style, etc. Owning a domain just gives a degree of professionalism to the whole aesthetic of your blog and in turn your BRAND will look better. Granted, a .com is not a measure of a quality because any old Tom, Dick or Harry can own a domain regardless of their blog content and Geocities looking site, but it’s good to have.
It’s just COOL having your own personalised space on the web. It’s the techy version of being able to buy a star, a planet or a piece of the moon. Except it’s actually yours AND its useful. Well snap. It’s even Worthing picking up the domain name of your own name just incase you become uber famous AND to protect your online identity. Taylor Swift recently snapped up the domains taylorswift.porn before anybody else got their dirty little mits on it for exactly that reason. You don’t want a domain falling into the wrong hands. For example the likes of SyCo snap up the domain names AND Twitter accounts of their X Factor contestants from day dot so they own exclusive rights from the off. It’s pretty likely that harperbeckham.com was purchased sharpish by the Beckhams crew to protect its new norms future prospects.
You prevent other people from “stealing” your name (or stealing someone elses name!). Picture the scenario: You start up a blog and pick a snappy happy name, carry on blissfully unaware with your .blogspot address and when you eventually come to register your domain someone already owns your domain and most probably all of the Google rankings that go with it – SAY WHAT? Oh no she didn’t. Other than settle for a poorly adapted substitute domain (for example www.ginger-girl-says.com – worra mouthful AND not as catchy). the only other option is to change your blog name entirely which means losing all those back links, all your rankings, redesigning your site, updating your social media. Ball. Ache.
There are some companies that for one reason or another can only work with .com domains for SEO campaigns or for review collaborations. Is it worth missing out on opportunities for a couple of quid and minor tech headache?
Why should you own your own domain, the techy part:
When you join Bloglovin, you claim “ownership” of your site and you amass Bloglovin followers based on that site address. If you switch from using a free hosting provider address to a domain mid way through owning your blog you’ll be forced to say bye bye to all of your followers and start afresh.
Page rank, domain authority and page authority are all SEO related techno speaks that you’ll see a lot of PR’s banging on about. These factors are all calculated using a mystery Google created algorithm that factors in quality content, back links and so on. If you decide to move from a .blogspot address to your own domain your back links become obsolete because technically, your blog isn’t located at that address any more. As with Bloglovin, you find yourself back to square one despite all your hard work and you face the task of having to rebuild such rankings from scratch.
So how do you buy AND set up your own domain? Click here to find out more.