Starting your first blog for completely free – A Helpful Guide

You can start a free blog for a variety of reasons, earning money online, learning how to write, practicing different writing styles or just for fun. The only investment you need in order to start a free blog is time, some dedication and a little bit of coffee.

So let’s begin.

Everything you need

Before you can start writing there’s a couple of things you need to figure out. It’s alright to skip some of these, or not care enough about them, but that can’t be said for everything.

Take a blog host for example, it’s something that you definitely need!

Blog Host

There aren’t a lot of options for you when it comes to hosting a website for free. Servers aren’t free, disk storage isn’t free and the power used to operate said servers, isn’t free either.

So remember, every time you’re opting for a free service, you’re compromising on a lot of features. Ignoring all this, I’ll still recommend the same two platforms that everyone else recommends.

Either pick Blogger, or WordPress. Wix is also a valid choice for those that are tempted to stick with a closed platform but it will be a lot more expensive in the long run.

Free Blogger Website – What’s the downside?

All free things come with a downside but blogger has the least.

I recommend the blogger platform to new beginners, it’s easy to learn and offers you more than enough freedom. Above everything else, blogger lets you easily switch to a custom domain name whenever you’re interested in doing so.

Not everything is perfect though! Blogger doesn’t allow you to self-host your website even if you’re willing to purchase a server. So you’re never going to have full control over the contents of your blog, and Blogger reserves the right to remove your website if they don’t agree with the content.

This is rarely an issue that concerns most people, but if you plan on blogging about controversial topics, we recommend using a self-hosted blog. Not only will you have more freedom to post whatever you desire, you won’t have to worry about waking up one day without a blog to post on.


PlatformBlogger
Custom DomainFree
Customization Plenty of options
Branding & AdsRemovable
MonetisationFull freedom
Default Sub-domainyoursite.blogger.com
Self-hostingNot allowed

Blogger is a nice platform to start out on, but it’s certainly not what I’d recommend. The reasoning behind that is pretty simple, WordPress can do everything that Blogger can, and it’s better at it.

If you do have a website on Blogger already, I’d recommend that you migrate it to WordPress whenever you can, just because there’s nothing to lose.

Free WordPress.com Website – What’s the downside?

We’re talking about WordPress.com, not WordPress.org! There’s quite a few differences but to sum it all up in a single sentence: WordPress.org is self-hosted whereas the former is a managed hosting service. Kind of like what I offer! Except mine has more customization options!

What I love about picking WordPress.com is that you can switch to a self-hosted WordPress site whenever you desire. There’s plenty of reasons why self-hosted is a better choice but we’re only interested in free solutions right now, and self-hosted websites aren’t free!


PlatformWordPress
Custom DomainFree
CustomizationPlenty of options
Branding & AdsRequires Premium
MonetisationRequires Premium
Default Sub-domainyoursite.wordpress.com
Self-hostingNot allowed

If I were to start a blog right now and didn’t have a single penny to spend. It would be on WordPress for precisely one reason: They let you export your entire site and move it elsewhere without asking any questions.

That’s not to say that there aren’t any downsides though! A free WordPress website will show advertisements from time to time, without your permission and without giving you a share of the revenue that’s generated. So if you wish to have more control over what’s shown to your users, you’re either forced to switch to a self-hosted platform, or just pay them the premium monthly price.

Free Wix Website – What’s the downside?

Wix used to be a running joke in online communities, but their services have improved drastically over the years. They allow you to run eCommerce, a blog, a business infosite, and all sorts of different things without you having to worry about ever breaking anything.

If you do manage to mess something up, you can just contact their tech support and they’ll fix everything for you. This is not an option for self-hosted services, if you manage to break something, more often than not it’s your own job to fix it.


PlatformWix
Custom DomainPremium Only
CustomizationPlenty of limited options
Branding & AdsRequires Premium
MonetisationRequires Premium
Default Sub-domainyoursite.wix.com
Self-hostingNot allowed

Out of the three options that I’ve covered here, Wix probably has the most downsides. It does make it very easy to set everything up, if you need to have an eCommerce section, you don’t have to go through varying degrees of complex plugins like WooCommerce.

But that’s also Wix’s downside. There aren’t a lot of options, they have solutions for different problems but those solutions are it. There aren’t any third party plugins that you can use on your website. All of these things do make it very hard for someone to break a website, but these are just limitations that most people aren’t comfortable with.

On platforms like WordPress, we have hundreds of free plugins to choose from and if those aren’t enough then someone out there has a premium plugin that would solve your issue. On Wix, you’re out of luck.

Not to mention the worst thing about Wix, the platform makes it very hard to move all your content off of your website. If you ever want to move from Wix to another platform, you’ll need to dedicate a lot of time for just copy pasting your content and reformatting it.

Start Writing

This is perhaps one of the most important things about blogging. You need to start writing as soon as possible and then don’t look back for at least a few months. There’s no need to look at your traffic, there’s no need to even add Google Analytics to your blog.

Just write and if you’re still confused, read through my post on SEO to find out why writing content is the most important thing for you.

Have any questions? Leave a comment.