So you've finally decided that writing a blog is an essential part of your marketing plan. As discussed before there are lots of reasons why this is a great idea, the most important being that it will increase your rankings in the search engine a lot quicker and more easily. This is going to result in a steady surge of free traffic to your website and leads into your business.

Now you have made the decision, what comes next. There are several different blogging platforms that you can choose to write your blog through and they are free. This is another great bonus to blogging. But before you start there are a couple of must have's when it comes to writing and publishing your blog.

Domain Name and Hosting

It must be hosted on your own domain name. This is the best way for you to brand yourself. Choose a strong name that suits your business or you! Having your own blog domain name is so much more professional and will make you stand out from the crowd. Think about what your marketing purpose is and tie your name somehow into this. Make it keyword rich if you can (a bit harder if it's going to be your own name) so that Google will be attracted to it. My first blog Enjoy Wealth and Happiness is a keyword rich domain name whereas this one is more about branding myself and it's going to go nicely with another blog of ours coming soon that will be similarly named.

There are free hosting blogs out there like, but you really want to host it yourself. Hosting it yourself gives you total control over your blog and what you post on it. You'll never have to worry about being shut down or changes occurring with the free blogging service and so messing things up for you. I like to use hostgator to host my blog accounts. It's known to be one of the best out there, it's monthly fees are cheap and they have unlimited domain hosting. So for the one low monthly price I currently host 3 of my personal websites through them. There support is incredible which is especially comforting if you are like me and can be quite html challenged at times.


It must be a Word Press Blog. You cannot beat a Word Press blog. They are the most popular and they have so many features and plug-ins that can be easily installed which will help your blog run more efficiently and be picked up by the search engines more easily. There are so many themes you can choose from and with a quick push of a button you can have a professional looking site up in minutes. What I love about Word Press is that you can even use their platform to add static pages as well so to have it more looking like a website. A professional designed website could cost you thousands of dollars. Use word press and it's free, performs all the functions, looks great and Google will love it!

If you are serious about using a blog to generate a lot of free traffic then you really must follow these few simple rules. Begin by doing these. Don't think you will start off by doing the completely free route and then changing over later on. I went down that path(only from not understanding the power of what I've outlined above) and so lost a lot of my readers and search engine ranking when I changed my site over to wordpress and my own hosted domain. You don't want all that time and effort to be for nothing and have to start all over again. Learn from my mistakes and do it right from the beginning.

Hosting your blog on your own branded domain name and using word press is the best way for you to get further ahead in the search engines and to be branded as a marketing leader.

Author's Bio: 

Caroline is an expert at blogging to generate leads for your online business. Her lead marketing system