From the outside, starting a blog seems like a simple enough task. Pick a topic you’re passionate about, pick a platform, and begin writing to a like-minded audience of supporters.

Currently, there are more than 460 million Tumblr blogs. Now add to that blogs built on other platforms and you’ll come up with an incredible number. While success is never guaranteed in the world of blogging (or blogosphere, as some call it), you can certainly bet that there will be some up-front and long-term costs associated with starting and growing your blog.

Though these costs can feel like a considerable burden at the onset, you can easily estimate the cost to start a blog by taking into account these four cost factors.

If you’re able to plan for these cost factors, you’ll find the financial path towards starting and running a blog to be a much more worthwhile investment of time and money.

Though these costs can feel like a considerable burden at the onset, you can easily estimate the cost to start a blog by taking into account these four cost factors.

If you’re able to plan for these cost factors, you’ll find the financial path towards starting and running a blog to be a much more worthwhile investment of time and money.

Cost Factor #1 – Domain Name and Web Hosting

A domain name and web hosts are twin factors you must address before starting your blog in earnest. Though it isn’t the most glamorous part of starting a blog, it is one of the most essential as it represents the purchase a plot of digital land upon which your blog will eventually be built.

Costs for domain names and web hosts can vary depending primarily on what tier plan you select and how many added features you select for your blog. Luckily, the majority of web hosts offer a variety of feature-bound tiers to match individual needs and budgets.

Domain Name – around $15/year

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Just like the sign on the front of a store, your domain is how your audience will recognize and remember who you are, as well as what kind of content you produce. As such, it is essential that you pick your domain name with care.
Though you are free to incorporate creativity into every other aspect of your new blog, you should stick with a domain name that is concise, easy to spell, and essentially memorable.

Domain names tend to cost around the same amount alone. But it is definitely worth your time to find the best available price (especially if it comes bundled with web hosting services).

Web Hosting – around $10/month

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Web hosting costs have been critically discussed lately as more entrepreneurs try their hand at blogging and other online ventures.

While this has driven competition up and average prices down, in turn, you should still be mindful of how many added features a web host offers for their base price.

Your web host is a lot like a landlord to whom you pay rent for a plot of digital land. As such, it behooves you to complete some research and find a web host that provides you with the richest, most feature-packed soil in which to plant your burgeoning blog seed.

One common quip rewarding web hosting is, “What about WordPress? How much does a WordPress blog cost?” As it turns out, web hosting on WordPress is free from the onset.

This can be a great boon to new bloggers concerned about cost. But if you intend to grow your blog in the future, you should remain vigilant for a better-quality paid option.

Cost Factor #2 – Content Creation

content creation for blog

Out of these cost factors, you should expect those concerning content creation to vary the most. These are highly dependent on what you want to blog about and how many financial resources they require to produce.

Writing a blog of your thoughts and opinions requires nearly nothing to produce, while a travel blog full of photos may require an expensive camera (not to mention travel costs).

When you are just starting your blog, be sure to not let these costs get out of hand.

Cost Factor #3 – Marketing and Social Media

Unlike the “Field of Dreams,” the audience will not come simply because you have built it. You must market your blog in order to grow an audience and inevitably, your marketing costs will cost some money.

Though you can keep these costs low when you start your blog, you should be willing to fork up a bit more to market your blog beyond its launch.

Marketing

There are many ways to market your blog online. All paths can play a role in getting your blog’s name in front of new would-be visitors.

Some online advertising can be done for minimal or no costs (such as self-promotion), while others (like Google Ad Sense) can cost a shifting amount (depending on market values and your investment).

Search engine optimization is another potential low-cost method of advertising through Google’s algorithms. By making use of keywords and phrases, you can help your blog posts appear higher in Google search results, which in turn helps new visitors to find the blog.

Social media is another popular channel today, especially if you intend on targeting a very specific audience or demographic. An incredible 96% of US bloggers marketed their blogs on social media, study finds. Facebook’s ad system, for instance, costs fairly little at the onset and can help give you a boost to audience member’s you could never find on your own.

Though these tend to increase in cost the longer you run them, social media ads are another potentially beneficial method for marketing your new blog.

Cost Factor #4 – Time

web blog cost

Remember that costs will only go up in time. Web hosts may change their payment plans, marketing costs may increase with market saturation, and more professional content requires a deeper investment of money (not to mention time).

Be mindful of the effect that time can have on your costs, as the longer you wait without actively attaining some type of financial return, the more likely you are to incur costs beyond your initial investment (as described above).

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, it’s difficult to put a pin in the widely-asked question, “how much does it cost to start a blog?”. Costs are often tied to web hosting and content creation, as well as other factors such as costs for themes and plugins.

Don’t let these costs dissuade you, though, as your passion for your topic and your writing skills can take you a long way once you overcome the initial financial hurdle.

As always, be realistic with your blogs financial goals. Be sure to make yourself a budget and stick to it. Take advantage of low-cost opportunities, but also be willing to splurge when it means adding functionality and value to your new blog.

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