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How to start a Wordpress Blog in 2018

HOW TO START A WORDPRESS BLOG IN 2018

There are 2 main options when it comes to building a WordPress blog or website, you either higher a web designer/ developer, agency or you build it yourself. If you are ready for a bit of work and dedication you can easily build your own WordPress website. In this article we cover how to start a wordpress blog and what's the cost

If you want to know how much it costs, the simple answer is it depends. It can be an annoying answer but that is the truth. Depending on your individual requirements, depending on the products and services you choose, depending on the functionality you choose. In this article we look at how much you can expect to shell out and we will help you make well-informed choices to get the best value for your buck! Here are the major things that you require to build a wordpress blog or a website and their costs.

First item: Domain Name.

This is the URL of your website like for this site it is www.iwebdesigns.net it is the 1st requirement before you start anything. You can use our domain name search tool to look for available domain names. While searching for a domain name it is important to consider social accounts for that name as well.

The pricing of a domain name usually ranges between $10 and $20 for common domains such as .com .net .org .info .co.ke A few country TLDs are cheaper such as .co.uk which can go for about $2 for the first year. Other TLDs such as .guru and .photography are higher than .com domains. It is also a good idea to consider the renewal cost so you don’t end up with a domain name that is costly to renew.

Sometimes you may find domains that are being auctioned that is because the previous owner is no longer interested in it or is looking to sell it at a profit. Domains that are for sale or on auction usually cost from $100 upwards to a few thousands. You need to be a bit careful before buying domains that have been previously owned. If a domain had been penalised by search engines before it expired you don’t want to register such a domain and inherit the penalty. There are a number of tools online that can help you research on expired domain names or pre-owned domain names.

Second item: Web Hosting

After you have chosen and registered a suitable domain name, the next item you will need is web hosting. Since your website is brand new and probably will not receive much traffic initially it is advisable to get shared hosting. Our shared hosting packages start from as low as $25 per year!

While choosing a web host for your website it is always good to consider scalability. As your website grows and starts receiving more traffic you may need higher bandwidth and disk space or more memory to handle multiple requests.

It is also good to consider a few other features like: number of emails, backups, number of allowed databases, processing power.

If your website starts receiving more traffic you may want to consider moving to a dedicated server or a virtual private server. However most shared hosting packages can handle a few thousand visitors a month.

Third item: Design

The best thing about WordPress is it has thousands and thousands of themes available at extremely reasonable prices. Some free themes are also well done to a point if you need a basic website you may just go the freeway.

Be sure to get a theme that is responsive. You don’t want to end up in a situation such as the one below.

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With the number of devices people use to access the internet it is important to deliver your content in a manner that easily adapts to the various screen sizes and resolutions.

While searching for a theme be sure to get a theme that has clean code, is not heavy and slow to load and can be optimised for search engines. Although many SEO plugins are available for WordPress a poorly coded theme can be difficult to optimise for SEO.

Envato market place or Themeforest is a good place to start your search for a WordPress theme. A good WordPress theme can cost an average of $30-$100

Be sure to check out the comments from people who have purchased the theme and reviews online as well. The theme is the most important investment that  you will make when building your website.

Another option is to hire a Web designer or a developer to build a theme for you. Although this is a more expensive option with costs starting at $3000 upwards it may be right for your business if you want to stand out or need custom features.

Now that you have the 3 most essential items you will require for a WordPress website it is important to make a few other considerations such as security, additional functionality and maintenance and support.

Fourth Item: Additional Plugins

You probably will need additional functionality from your WordPress website at one point or another. Since WordPress is free and open source it has a good developer community that are constantly rolling out new functionality in the form of plugins. Plugins are easy to install and give you the freedom of quickly adding new functionality to your website.

From my experience as a web developer a typical website will require 3-5 plugins to achiever the required functionality of the client. Plugins start from as low as $10 going upwards to a few hundred dollars. The average price of a plugin is $30.

Fifth Item: Security

As WordPress is amongst the most popular CMS it is often the target for hackers. While not necessarily a cost it is important to make security amongst your top considerations. You can hire a developer or install a firewall on your server. Typical security costs for WordPress is about $10 a month. You should also consider investing in an SSL certificate which starts from as low as $30 per year.

Sixth Item: Maintenance

To finish it all off you will need to decide who maintains and updates your website. If you are still in the mood for some DIY then the cost is your time. If you wish to hire someone to do it for you then the cost can depend on the individual you hire. Our firm for example charges about $100 per month for 20 hours worth of updates. For people who don’t want a retainer it is about $10 per post.

If you decided to purchase a theme, most theme developers offer periodic updates. Don’t forget to keep updating your WordPress installation also whenever it is available.

If at any point in time things break then Google is your mechanic. A lot of the problems you face someone somewhere has faced and probably found a solution for it. In the highly unlikely case you need to hire a developer to fix something broken do consider services like Fivver, starting at $5 J

Finally what is the cost of a WordPress website in 2017?

So there are a number of factors to consider when deciding or estimating how much your website will cost in 2017. If you are still unsure then I would suggest hiring a developer and preparing yourself for $3000- $5000. On the other hand if you are happy to DIY here is a breakdown of the cost

Domain Name: $10 per year

Hosting: $25 per year

Theme: $60 one off cost

Plugins: $90 (an average of 3 plugins at $30 each)

SSL Certificate: $30 per year

Maintenance: $30 per year if you DIY

Total cost per year: $245 for the first year. That is a shockingly cheap $20 per month for the first year. In the second year you probably will not need to buy the theme or plugins and that will save you about $150 in the second year.

WordPress is not costly at all. If you are on an even tighter budget you can start with free themes and plugins and work your way up. Although if you are looking for something complex like an e-commerce site you will need to pay about $3000 - $5000 to a developer.