Help! Where Should I Host My Blog?

Posted in Search & Social — Oct 14, 2011

Blogs can be such a good thing for your business. Not only do they provide more casual outlet for truly connecting with your audience, but you can address all sorts of questions on a blog that might not be as easy to integrate into your main website. They're also great for improving keyword relevance and online visibility for SEO (unique content, anyone?).

Blogs are also fun because you get to rant on them! And today I'm going to rant about blog hosting - in particular, WHERE you should host a blog:

blog locationThat's where. Please don't host your blog anywhere else. If you'd like to stop reading now, go for it, just take those direct orders from me and run with it.

Or, we can break it down a little bit more:

blog on subdirectory on your domain

You will want to host your blog on a subdirectory under your own domain name. You don't have to name the subdirectory "blog" - but pleeeze make sure you host on a subdirectory. Why is this important?

**1. You consolidate content and relevance under your own domain name.

  1. Incoming links point to pages under your own domain name.**

What are some example of blog locations that could be a bad idea? Please avoid scenarios like this:

External, 3rd party websites:

  • yourblog.wordpress.com
  • yourblog.typepad.com
  • yourblog.someotherdomain.com
  • someotherdomain.com/yourblog

A subdomain of your own website:

  • yourblog.yourdomain.com

Hosting on a third party site fractures your domain authority between two different websites, while adding ZERO content to your own domain. Never ever give your content away to Wordpress, Typepad, or some other 3rd party blogging site. Why throw your custom-written copy and incoming link authority out the window? Sure, you may get traffic to those sites, but it will always be traffic and incoming links going to Wordpress.com or Typepad.com or Blogger.com - not so much your own company site. Any links that point to your site from Wordpress or Typepad would pale dramatically in comparison to all the additional links you could get, from all over the internet, pointing to your own blog on your own site. And if you add a bunch of copy to a third party site, it won't really help your own site improve keyword relevance.

Hosting a subdomain on your own domain is little bit better... but not much. Unless your blog has a really unique subject or needs a completely different branding initiative where it makes sense to host it your own subdomain, it's a lot better to keep it consolidated under one domain. Google stlll views a subdomain as largely being a separate entity from your main domain (even if Webmaster Tools seems to report it as an internal link).

SO: Happy blogging and remember - work those subdirectories!

Disclaimer: There are obviously exceptions to this rule, but I do believe that the majority of websites are best served by blog hosting on a subdirectory.

ANOTHER Disclaimer: As per Mike's comments below, there are cases when you might want to host on a subdomain. If your blog has already been up on a subdomain for years, then please leave it there. The advantages of moving just wouldn't be worth having to lose incoming links that have been built up to your subdomain. However: if you currently host on an external domain, then yes - I would advocate moving your blog and 301ing old pages.

Written by Sarah Mackenzie.

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