Welcome to the world of blogging! It’s more than a virtual diary—it’s a real business.

It requires investment.


Blogs are valuable assets. They’re a powerful tool, generating leads for 76% of B2B marketers.

Ready for the journey?

Let’s delve into the cost of starting a blog. Why it matters. How it contributes to success. Let’s unravel the blog budgeting mystery, together!

Core investments for starting a blog

When embarking on your blogging journey, understanding the core investments is crucial.

These are the things, the essentials that lay the foundation of your blog.

Let’s dive into the first and one of the most vital aspects: the domain name.

Domain name

Your domain name is more than just an address for your blog; it’s the identity of your brand online. Think of it as the digital equivalent of your storefront’s sign.

For example, my blog, BloggingX.com, isn’t just a URL – it’s a representation of everything the blog stands for.

Choosing the right domain name is a critical step.

Name Cheap Pricing

There are several registrars, like Namecheap, GoDaddy, and others, where you can register your domain.

I personally prefer Namecheap for its affordability and ease of use. When you visit a registrar’s website, like Namecheap, you can easily search for your desired domain.

A .com domain costs $5.98 for the first year. However, upon renewal, the price jumps to $13.98.

If you’re unsure about the blog domain name, don’t worry. Take your time to find something that truly reflects your blog’s essence.

For instance, if your niche is optics, a domain like ‘opticsabout.com’ might be a perfect fit.

Lean Domain Search

If you want help brainstorming your domain name, you can use various tools like Lean Domain Search or even ChatGPT to come up with a really good domain name.

Additionally, I have a dedicated blog post on how to choose a blog name that you can refer to.

Many people nowadays prefer expired domain names that inherently come with a lot of authority. If that’s of interest, you can refer to this guide I have on expired domain names.

Web hosting

After securing your domain name, the next core investment is web hosting.

This is where your blog ‘lives’ on the internet. It’s the service that makes your blog accessible to everyone, everywhere. Choosing the best web hosting provider is crucial for your blog’s performance and reliability.

I personally recommend Hostinger for its exceptional balance of affordability and quality, especially for beginners.

Hostinger Pricing

Their Premium plan is priced at $2.49 per month, which is a discounted price if you pay for 4 years. It’s the perfect plan to get started. However, keep in mind that these are just introductory prices, and renewal costs may be higher.

If you’re seeking a cheap web hosting solution with excellent website speeds, consider Cloudways. While their support may not be exceptional, if you’re proficient in technical matters, it won’t let you down.

WPX Hosting Pricing

As your blog grows, you might want to explore managed WordPress web hosting for enhanced speed and support. I use WPX Hosting for my sites, which provides outstanding performance and customer support.

Their business plan, suitable for up to five websites, is priced at $20.83 per month.

Remember, your choice of hosting should align with your blog’s current needs and future growth plans.

Rocket.net Pricing

You can also consider Rocket.net, another prominent hosting provider, founded by Ben Gabler. He has solid experience working in senior positions with hosting companies like Hostgator, GoDaddy, and even StackPath.

You can renew your subscription monthly at the regular price, which ranges from $30 to $100 per month, depending on the plan you choose.

WordPress page builders

The final core investment for starting your blog is choosing a WordPress page builder. These tools are not just for crafting pages anymore; they are comprehensive tools for building your entire website, from the header to the footer and everything in between. As per stats, WordPress powers 43% of all websites, making it the world’s most popular content marketing platform.

There are several WordPress page builders available, such as Elementor, Divi Builder, Bricks Builder, and even Oxygen Builder, designed for professional developers.

Elementor Website

A standout choice in this realm is Elementor Pro.

It’s more than just a page builder; it’s a complete website design solution. Elementor has recently revamped its code base, significantly optimizing its page builder for speed – a crucial factor for any website’s success. This update marks a significant leap forward in terms of performance.

Moreover, Elementor has introduced its own hosting service, which is a compelling option if you’re already utilizing their page builder. It streamlines the process, making it easier to manage your site. While I haven’t extensively used Elementor’s hosting service yet, its integration with their page builder is promising and worth considering, especially for those heavily invested in Elementor for their site design.

Elementor Pro Pricing

Elementor Pro, priced at $59 per year, offers excellent value for money.

The renewal discounts for continued updates and support make it a wise long-term investment.

Elementor Pro Widgets

With over 50+ Pro widgets, 300+ pro templates, and a drag-and-drop interface, Elementor Pro simplifies website design, making it accessible even to those without coding skills.

Using Elementor, you can create visually appealing designs with ease. My own websites, including BloggingX, are built with Elementor, showcasing the level of professionalism and aesthetic appeal you can achieve.

Choosing the right page builder can significantly impact your blog’s overall look and functionality. With Elementor’s recent performance improvements and the introduction of its own hosting solution, it’s a top contender for anyone serious about blogging.

Optional costs

While the core investments cover the essentials, there are optional costs in blogging that can significantly impact your blog’s success. These expenses vary based on your specific needs and the niche you are tackling.

Content creation costs

Content is king in the blogging world. If you’re writing your own content, the primary cost is your time. However, if you choose to outsource, the cost can range from $15 to $50 per thousand words, depending on the niche.

Blog Post

For instance, on BloggingX, I pay up to $50 per thousand words. The blogging niche is highly competitive, and top-notch content is essential to stand out. In contrast, for my audio site, I pay around $25 to $30 per thousand words. The technical nature of this niche demands skilled writing, thus justifying the cost.

The price for content in other niches, like technology or lifestyle, might be lower as there’s a broader pool of knowledgeable writers. The key is to balance the cost with the quality and expertise required for your specific niche.

However, with the advent of AI blogging, the cost of content creation has significantly reduced. AI-powered tools like KoalaWriter, Jasper, ChatGPT, etc., can generate human-like text, eliminating the need for expensive writers.

This has made it easier for bloggers to produce high-quality content at a fraction of the cost.

SEO and research tools

Another optional but vital cost is for SEO and research tools. I use Ahrefs’ light plan, which is $990 annually. If you’re just starting, this might seem steep. In such cases, you might opt for short-term plans or use the tool only when necessary, like during niche research phases.

Ubersuggest Tool

For more budget-friendly options, Ubersuggest offers a generous free plan and affordable premium plans. They even have a lifetime deal available for $120.

Ahrefs Pricing

However, if you’re treating blogging as a serious business, investing in a tool like Ahrefs, even if just at critical moments, can be a game-changer.

These tools are crucial for site exploration, competition research, keyword discovery, site auditing, and more. They can greatly enhance your SEO efforts, which is fundamental for the growth and visibility of your blog.

Calculating the total cost of starting a blog

The sum of core investments

First, let’s add up the core investments:

  1. Domain name: The average annual cost of a domain name is around $10 to $15 after the initial year, which is cheaper. As I said, some popular registrars to consider are Namecheap and GoDaddy.
  2. Web hosting: There are many web hosting providers that offer different plans and features for bloggers. The first-year cost of web hosting can range from $35.40 to $143.40, depending on the provider and the plan you choose. For example, Hostinger costs just $2.49 monthly, while it is as high as $20.83 per month for WPX Hosting.
  3. WordPress page builder: Elementor Pro is one of the best WordPress page builders for bloggers, as it offers a lot of flexibility and customization options. The annual cost of Elementor Pro is $59 for one site, with discounts for more sites. However, there are also other WordPress page builders that you can consider, such as Beaver Builder, Divi, and Thrive Architect. The annual cost of these page builders can range from $49 to $89, depending on the features and the number of sites you need.
Beaver Builder Pricing
WPX Hosting

So, the minimum you’re looking at for the first year, without considering any discounts or special offers, is approximately $160.90. This cost includes a domain name, web hosting, and a WordPress page builder. If you opt for the free version of Elementor, this cost drops to around $101.90.

But if you’re thinking of outsourcing this development work, WordPress website development cost can vary.

Apart from these, there are some other costs as well, like:

  1. Content creation: The cost of outsourcing content creation can vary widely depending on the quality, quantity, and niche of your content. However, the average cost of content creation can range from $25 to $100 per thousand words. Some of the platforms that you can use to find freelance writers are Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer.
  2. SEO tools: SEO tools are essential for bloggers who want to rank higher on search engines and drive more organic traffic to their sites. Some of the best SEO tools for bloggers are Ahrefs, Semrush, and Moz. The annual cost of these tools can range from $228 to $1,188, depending on the tool and the plan you choose . However, there are also some free or cheaper alternatives that you can use, such as Ubersuggest, Google Analytics, and Yoast SEO.
SEMrush Pricing
Semrush pricing

These costs depend on your specific strategies and the level of investment you’re comfortable with in these areas.

Personal experience

Reflecting on my own journey, I remember starting my first self-hosted WordPress site with an initial investment of about $90.

Looking back, that investment has brought an incredible return. Starting a blog is a leap of faith, especially when you’re on a tight budget. But remember, online businesses are the future. A thoughtful investment in your blog today can lead to substantial returns tomorrow.

In summary, while $101.90 to $160.90 might initially seem like a barrier, especially for beginners, it’s a manageable and worthwhile investment for starting a real, viable online business. Blogging is an ever-evolving digital business, and these investments are the stepping stones to your success.