Apart from the above, you do not own the resources you put on these platforms as they reside on their server. Free Platforms under discussion, have a series of other restrictions such as lack of control panel, prevention of installation of preferred scripts, difficulty in integration of useful social media platforms, and installation of themes and plugins to extend and or enhance the web/blogging sites.
The way out of all the above shortcomings is to have a personal domain name, web-hosting and use WordPress as your website and or blogging platforms.
What is a Blog and How is it Different from a Website?
I am sure you must be asking or be worried about what is the difference between a website and a blog. Before you start a blog or website, it is essential that you understand the differences in the two concepts.
What is a Blog?
A blog is like a website but the contents of blogs are usually referred to as ‘posts’ whereby the newer contents appear first. The aim of blogs is to present information that allows for comments, discussions or conversation on published materials or articles.
In addition, blogs have a write-up that uses categories and tags while websites are organized using pages to display static contents.
Blog or Website – Which One is Better?
The answer to this question depends on what your goals are. We have a situation where an individual or organization have only a website, others maintain only a blog and we have those who combine website and a blog since, the content management system they are using have the two facilities in view of the potentials and inherent benefits of a blog in their overall business plans, objectives, and strategies.
Why Do People Blog?
Blogging has the following benefits among others:
• It is an avenue to share your ideas, thoughts, and views on a particular area (s) of interest
• Allows you to showcase your skills, creativity, and talents
• Help individuals become an authority in their industry
• Assist you to interact and socialize with the relevant and interesting like-minded online community
• Income generation
• To attract potential customers to their websites, raise awareness, run social media campaigns, and influence public opinion and or change their perception.
Why Do People Build a Website?
1. Improve Business Credibility
Website is your online business address where clients, customers, and others go to search for your organization online. It gives your business identity and an opportunity to have a branded email which is better than a general email address such as Gmail or yahoos is a virtual proof that it exists. It legitimizes your business and improves your credibility.
2. Build Your Business through:
- Share Your Story
- Get Clients
- Find Your Team through career and advertisement page
3. Enhance Your Online Presence.
- Improve Search Ranking
- Distribute Content
- Open 24/7
- Introduce Business Flexibility
4 Build a Strong Relationship with Your Market.
- Let the Market Know “Who You Are”.
- Address the Needs of Your Market.
- Educate the Market of Your Business.
- Improve Customer Service.
5. Efficient Way to Promote Your Business
- Social Media
- E-mail Marketing
- Use Videos
6. Boost Your Reputation as an Authority
7. Create a Tool for Sales Generation
8. Showcase Your Work
9. Keep Track of Your Business in Real-Time
10. Professionalize Your Brand
A website is not an expense. It is an investment because you should expect a return on your money within a period of time.
The secret of Picking a Blog name & domain name
- Easy to remember
- Easy to type and free from ambiguity
- Easy to call or pronounce
- Your domain name is your brand,
- Changing a brand name has a lot of implications.
What your blog is all about? Finding a Niche
Selecting the appropriate niche is the first and the most important step for starting a new blog. The very first thing you need to do is find the niche of your blog. By niche, I mean finding a topic that your blog is going to be about. As much as possible it should be a keyword such as fashion, education, health, etc.
How to find the topic of your blog?
• Here are a few tips that will help you to get started:
• Find a topic of interest that you know better than anyone else and you can comfortably talk about it for hours.
• Choose a topic that you know that you can add values with your own idea.
Website and Blogging Platform
My recommendation on which platform you should use for your website or blog is self-hosted WordPress in view of its numerous advantages and based on the fact that I use WordPress for all my websites. We shall also be using WordPress Themes for our Web design. WordPress themes are ready-made designs that are available for all types of websites and blogs. These themes are either free, freemium or premium. Each of the three types of themes above has its benefits and disadvantages. This shall be discussed later.
1. To have a website or a blog you need the following:
2. Domain Name
3. Self-Hosting Environment
4. Web Site Content Management Systems (WordPress)
5. WordPress Themes (free, freemium and Premium)
7. Installation of WordPress, WordPress Themes, and WordPress Plugins
8. Documentations (See previous lecturers on Documentation)
9. Configuration and Integration of relevant platforms.