The No. 1 secret of setting up a successful blog is to use your own domain name with your blog.
No matter how tempting it seems to use free services with addresses like abc.wordpress.com or xyz.typepad.com, set up the blog on your own domain that you’ve registered yourself.
Why? Because you’re in control of your blog. If it gets very popular and you want to customise it more, you have the freedom to do so without penalty.
You can choose to:
- move to another blog platform
- change your blog setup (categories, etc)
- move to a subdomain or subdirectory so you can redevelop your site
If you do not use your own domain, then you are stuck with having to tell everyone where your new blog is, and losing the value of all of the links pointed at your old blog.
You can register a new .com domain for less than USD $9 from namecheap.com and other registrars, and you can find out more about choosing a domain name in this previous blog entry.