Russ Harvey Consulting - Computer and Internet Services

Customized Blogs

Great for time-sensitive information

Is Blogging Right for You? | Hosting Options
About Blogs | Need Professional Help?

Customized Blogs

Is Blogging Right for You?

WordPress and similar Content Management System (CMS) technologies have exploded in recent years, mostly because of the concept that you can “do it yourself.”

Not For Everyone!

Good content that is well presented is what draws readers.

Unfortunately, many people that choose to develop and run their own blog don't understand the technology or know how to create a good blogging experience.

Your ability to successfully manage your own blog depends upon a number of factors:

Required Skills

Modern blogging software is essentially like a modern word processor, except that the results are posted online rather than printed on paper.

Audience Appeal

When you start a blog (or an e-newsletter) you'll have to have a target market and the ability to keep that market entertained and informed about your chosen topic. Know you passion, but ensure you have the required depth of knowledge and new ideas to post regularly.

Stick with original viewpoints and thoughts that are engaging while informing. Keep the purpose of your blog in mind when writing posts.

Writing Skills

Blogging software still needs a skilled writer to create marketable copy. Whoever is posting to your blog (you or your staff) need to understand the rules of writing including good grammar and punctuation.

Usability Skills

That person should also be experienced with layout principles and know how people read online, what draws their attention, how to format a link correctly and much more.

Having Difficulties?

Having challenges doing it yourself?

Get professional help.
Call Now

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Blog Hosting Options

There are several options for hosting blogs, each with their own strengths and weaknesses:

WordPress is the best known blogging software, with about 40% of the world's sites using that software.

Blogger and other blogging platforms have much smaller installed bases.

There is also the option to build a custom blog using the same technology used to build websites.

WordPress.com

There is a huge number of WordPress themes, both free and commercial versions. In some cases you'll have to pay an annual fee to unlock the ability to customize the layout, fonts or other elements.

A base WordPress blog can be hosted on WordPress.com for free. There are advantages and disadvantages.

WordPress Vulnerable

WordPress's popularity can be a problem with security because, just like Windows, it offers more potentially vulnerable targets.

Hosting on WordPress.com

Blogs hosted on WordPress.com are updated automatically, including security fixes and theme updates.

If you hosting on WordPress.com, your blog address will be your user name before wordpress.com:

widgets.wordpress.com

You can upgrade to a unique WordPress-hosted domain if you subscribe to a personal or premium plan:

widgets.com

WordPress on Your Website

By downloading WordPress then installing it into your regular hosting site, your blog will be running alongside your main website:

widgets.com/blog

When WordPress is installed on your own hosting service (ISP) you need to be vigilant about upgrading both WordPress and the installed templates or plugins to avoid security vulnerabilities.

IslandHosting Recommended

Hosting reliability and support is a key concern for site owners.

I strongly recommend IslandHosting for its world-class hosting service and excellent support.

Check out Islandhosting.com

WordPress can be installed and maintained using the Installatron feature in cPanel.

Other Blogging Software

Custom software designed to create, edit and maintain blogs is also available.

For the most part this software is used by larger organizations where several individuals manage different portions of the blog (the various Microsoft blogs are one example).

Requirements are Different

Blogging software runs independently and doesn't have the overhead required by WordPress and similar CMSs.

Big Learning Curve

Dedicated blogging software is seldom a good choice for individuals or small businesses.

Like with most CMSs, there can be a large learning curve and support can disappear if the software vendor fails.

It may be a viable option if you're hosting several blogs under your domain.

A Custom Designed Blog

The third option is to have a custom blog built using the same techniques as a custom website.

The blog can be built with the same general layout as the main site.

The blog format is not dependent upon any existing platform as they are with WordPress or Blogger.

Flexible but Depends Upon Professional Help

Postings to the blog aren't limited to a pre-determined format and new concepts can be incorporated by the blog/site designer much easier than modifying a free or purchased blog template.

Unless you incorporate a content management systems (CMS) — which has its own issues — you'll need professional help building then posting to your blog.

Russ has created and maintained custom blogs like this for clients. Postings are provided by email (usually in MS Word format) then the post is generated from that file, adding necessary links, images and formatting.

Got Questions? Call Now!

About Blogs

Think of blogs as an online public diary where you can post thoughts, opinions and more.

There is less structure than with a website and its date-based format is more conducive to time-sensitive topics.

Share Your Expertise

Blogs allow you to present your expertise in a less-formal atmosphere and provide a great opportunity to educate your clients or potential customers.

Blogs can allow you to develop a following based upon your expertise.

Because they are a series of discreet posts, you can easily refer to a specific post containing the concept or event you're referring to.

This allows you to post comments on other blog or on social media with a link back to your posting on the relevant topic.

NOT Date-sensitive

Because blogs post in date order, expectations are different. Older information doesn't appear “stale” like it can on a website.

Blogs are great for posting time-sensitive information like sales events, book launches, readings, arts events, etc.

Such postings can be left on the blog for historical reference or can be removed without endangering the blog purpose or structure.

Writing Skills Needed

That said, you need to be able to write engaging material if you wish to capture and retain your market.

Done properly, your blog can become a tremendous asset.

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Need Professional Help?

Russ designs custom blogs that can provide you with a platform to showcase your ideas, demonstrate your expertise or simply to provide an outlet for your creativity.

He can also customize a blog based on WordPress or Blogger software although the options there are more limited.

 

Get started now!

 

Blogs are NOT websites, although they can be customized to perform that function.

There are various methods of hosting a blog. Which one works best depends upon you, your goals and the skills at your disposal.

Blogging Services

He provides the following blog services:

Let's discuss your requirements and determine the best options for you.

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Web Design Index

  1. The Introduction.
  2. Design philosophy.
  3. Design considerations.
  4. Design criteria.
  5. Content Management Systems.
  6. Customized Blogs.
  7. Factors affecting price.
  8. Request a quote.
  9. Site maintenance.
  10. My design portfolio.

Questions? Call Now!

 

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Updated: January 10, 2024