Welcome to The Blog Report

I'm so glad you stopped by and hope you find this blog an interesting read. I've been blogging since April of 2006, currently the author of six public and two private blogs. In the beginning I knew absolutely nothing about blogging. Over the years through trial and error, frustration and elation, and a few tears I've learned a lot. However, the learning process when it comes to blogging continues to evolve. Here you will find a hodge podge of my blogging experiences, useful codes and how-tos, sprinkled liberally with my opinions. Enjoy!

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Thursday, February 4, 2016

Custom Domains

Back in the days of the blogging networks, blogs with domain names ending in Blogger or Wordpress domains were frowned on regardless of how good they were.  Certain monetizing sites would not even accept a blog unless it had a custom domain.  Like many, I saw no real need for a custom domain.  My blogs have flourished and even made money since their conception without a custom domain.  So the question remains as to whether a custom domain is really necessary.

Three years ago, I bought custom domains for two of my blogs but have never used them.  With the return from my blogging hiatus of 2015, I'm planning on using those two domains.  Well, actually I bought another one to simplify one I already own so now have three domains.  Essentially all this will be doing is simplifying the URL for my readers.

Custom domains require registering the domain you want based on availability.  A custom domain should be a short title of the blog.  I chose a .ca domain so also had to validate my registrant information with CIRA and accept their agreement.  Canadian citizens and businesses, organizations, and community groups located in Canada are eligible to register .ca domain names.  Other countries will have their own criteria or you can use .com (commercial), .net (commercial/universities), or .org (organizations) if your blog falls into those categories.  In addition to a custom domain, email addresses can be set up using the custom domain (eg.  yourblogname@domain.ca). 

Benefits of a custom domain:

  • shortened url
  • better SEO
  • domain specific email address
  • professional
I'm paying $19.95 annually for each of my domains.  There is no limit as to the number of domains you can register and there is no time frame in which they must be used providing you pay to renew each year.   I will be changing one of my blogs to a custom domain shortly using the custom domain instructions on Blogger Help. 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Should a Blog be Revived?

As I was pondering how I wanted to proceed with my blogs, the question whether I should revive them arose.  Mainly, this is self-doubt speaking.  Some blogging experts would say no.  Others would say yes.  The bottom line is, it's really up to you. 

An existing blog already has content so with a bit of tweaking, reviving it is merely starting to blog again.  It will require pinging the blog to be sure the search engines are picking the blog up but other than that, simply start writing.  An existing blog can have problems with poor content, poor design or a generic domain (eg. blogspot.com) but these are all elements that can be changed if desired.    In some cases, you may not want to revive a blog but rather start fresh.  That can be a hard decision but it may be best if the blog is such that you can no longer write content for it.  The blog topic may no longer be of interest to you.  In this case, it will be difficult to write good content to revive the blog.