how much does it cost to start a blog (5 ESSENTIAL + 7 OPTIONAL Blog Startup Costs)

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Hello! Are you interested in learning How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog, Blog Startup Costs And Expenses, and more? Today’s article will allow you to quickly take steps to answer all the above questions.

How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog

Setting up a blog is simple, almost anyone can do it. Yet starting a successful business that earns you an income is far from easy. It takes hard work, dedication, sacrifice, discipline, time investment, perseverance—and money.

It doesn’t have to be this way, though! I’ve been blogging since 2016 and have become a full-time blogger with zero experience, and learned a thing or two about which blog expenditures are absolutely necessary and which you can afford to forego.

Here’s a comprehensive approach about how much does it cost to start a blog to estimating your blogging expenses, no matter you’re budget or professional bloggers.

Hope it helps!

How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog: Before Investing In A Blog

Before you even think about how much does it cost to start a blog, ask yourself these three important questions:

  • Why do I want to start my own blog? If you can’t answer this question with confidence, refer back to it in your free time. Get clarity on why you’re considering blogging and whether or not it’s really something you want to do.
  • What is the goal of your blog? Try to be as specific as possible. Are you just blog as a hobby? Or do your want to make it a side hustle? Or do you want to be a full-time blogger? If you want a blog that earns money, determine how much you’d like to earn and by when.
  • What is my budget for blogging? As a general rule of thumb, think about how much you’d be willing to spend on the blog startup costs and how much to invest in your blog per month. Note that blogging is an ongoing process, but at some point, you’ll need to set a time limit on how much you’re willing to invest.

For this blog post, I’m assuming that you’ve already answered these three questions and want to move forward to know why should you invest in blogging and how much does it cost to start a blog.

Why Should I Invest In Blogging?

While this is not meant to discourage anyone, if you want to earn money online via blogging, no matter you are doing it to earn some extra pocket money or want to quit your job, you need to invest in blogging and spend some cost to start a blog.

Here’s the reason why:

  • Blogging is like owning a business – It takes time and money (investment) to grow when you start any kind of online business. And when it comes to blogging, it requires much more commitment and dedication.
  • Blogging takes a lot of time – Assuming you have a tight schedule, if it’s just a hobby, you won’t have the luxury to sit down and blog for hours on end. You can’t manage your time wisely, which will then lead to the failure of your blogging business. Thus, you need some tools to help you save your manage your blogging time properly.
  • It’s NOT just about writing – There’s more to blogging than just writing. For example, you will need analytics (like WordPress Stats) to measure the readership of your blog posts and find out what works and what doesn’t. You’ll also need an attractive theme with a custom background for your blog design. And obviously, you’ll need a nice logo as well.
  • There’s a learning curve in blogging – Can you learn and establish all of the above by yourself and spend no cost to start a blog? I’d say it’s hard to. You don’t want to end up with a shabby website that looks like it was built in an hour.

5 ESSENTIAL Set-Up Costs (How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog)

cost to start a blog

Now that you have a better idea of why you need to invest in blogging, let’s have a frank discussion about the actual set-up costs of how much does it cost to start a blog.

1. Hosting for blog (from $2.95/month)

This is probably the first expense and cost to start a blog that most new bloggers have to deal with.

Your hosting company is the one that makes your blog “online” available to the rest of the world.

For Budget bloggers:

There are several blog hosting companies to choose from, but for beginners who have a limited budget, I will suggest Bluehost.

It is the most trusted hosting company on the market at a cheap rate.

The Bluehost hosting plans start at around $2.95 per month/ per website. (with my discount link here)

(You may sign up for a 12- to 36-month plan, but you must pay for it up ahead. And renew price is at the regular rate of $10.99/month)

cost to start a blog

For Blogging Learners:

The alternative hosting company is Wealthy Affiliate.

They are a hosting company, as well as a blogging course for beginners. It’s also what I personally used for me to learn how to build my first website and got it up and running to earn money online until now.

It provides a starter membership for FREE which provides you all the basic things you need to start your blog.

Of course, the free membership features are not enough for you to be successful in blogging in long run. If you want more features on your blog, you can join their premium membership which is from $49-$99/month. (59% discount on your 1st-month Premium membership only $19 with my discount link here)

Although it sounds quite expensive for the cost to start a blog, it includes everything for beginners – a comprehensive course about blogging and affiliate marketing and includes up to 50 website hosting services, unlimited support, and more. Check here for details.

cost to start a blog

Keep in mind that this is your initial investment in your blog. It symbolizes the dedication you’re putting into your new company.

2. Domain name registration fees (From $0)

Another relatively minor blog startup costs that bloggers must incur is the purchase of a domain name, which serves as your blog’s Internet address.

For Budget bloggers:

If you registered the hosting plan in Bluehost via my discount link, it included a FREE domain name for the 1st year in the basic package.

And if you registered for the Free learning course in Wealthy affiliate, you can also get a free domain name from them to save your cost to start a blog, but it will include “” at the end of your domain name.

(note: you will get a free own domain when upgrades to a premium membership.)

For Professional bloggers:

In general, both Bluehost and Wealthy Affiliate just offer the free domain in the 1st year from your registration, and you need to pay from $14.99 to $ 17.99 for the renewal fees.

3. Blogging Platform ($0)

Picking the blogging platform for your blog is like picking the foundation for building a home…it’s near impossible to change later on. seems to be the most popular blogging platform on Earth. And it is an absolutely FREE cost to start a blog.

It is so popular that hosting companies design their services around WordPress users. Once you buy the hosting, no matter from Bluehost or Wealthy Affiliate) WordPress is installed and ready for you to do your blogging.

I use it to run my entire online business (including this website).

4. Blog Theme (From $0)

Blog themes are pieces of software that allow you to change the look of your blogs, such as the fonts, colors, and overall layout of your blog.

For Budget bloggers:

Any Blogger can download a FREE theme. ( I highly recommend beginners to use the free theme Kadence, it is a free WordPress theme that may be used for a variety of purposes.)

For Professional bloggers:

But if you want to look more polished, professional, and progressive, you may also consider investing in a custom-designed blog theme that costs between $50 – $200 or more.

Divi is one of the most flexible and user-friendly themes available in the market right now.

However, it is somewhat expensive at $89/year, if your budget allowed, it’s good to go as you can build up and expand your blog much faster with ease with Divi than any others.

5. Designer and branding elements(From $0)

The next one about the cost to start a blog is the graphic design fees.

The graphic design of your blog will pull the whole look and feel together. Thus, create beautiful logos, graphics, and other branding elements that are essential for blogs. It needs to look good, be consistent with what you’re writing about, and communicate a little bit about who you are.

For Budget bloggers:

If you can’t afford a design agency or an expensive graphic designer, there are plenty of resources online, spend just ten minutes searching for “DIY Business Logo Designs,” you’ll see a huge list of options for creating professional-looking graphics without having to spend any money. is one of the free popular websites that give any budding entrepreneur some guidance on designing for free.

For Professional bloggers:

However, if you want your blog to look more attractive and stunning, it is an unavoidable blog startup cost to hire a professional designer.

You can find some logo designers on websites like Fiverr, but it’s important to note that their work is depending on their rates, which can vary from $5 to more than $100.

7 OPTIONAL Up-Running Costs (How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog)

cost to start a blog

We’ve discussed the essential costs of how much does it cost to start a blog in the above section, and now, we are going to look into some extra costs that help to keep your blog running and achieve the end goal -earn money online.

To be succeeded in blogging and make money, you need to invest in different kinds of tools with different purposes. Blogging is a business, all about investing your money and time. You need to be smart enough in choosing which tool is necessary for your blogging business.

p.s. All tools below are OPTIONAL costs to start a blog, you don’t have to use the following as a guideline for your own personal budget. These are the tools that I’ve personally spent over the past years. But if your budget allowed, you could consider investing in it to make your blog more effective.

1. Keyword Search Tools (From $0-over 100/month)

In order for your blog to be found, you need to know which keywords are most relevant and popular among your readers.

For Budget bloggers:

If you want to find winning keywords to target but don’t have the funds to invest in premium tools, then Google Trends for keyword research used to be a good option. You may type in any ‘seed’ term and get some keyword ideas as well as search volumes.

For Professional bloggers:

If you want a professional approach, it’s best to pay for a keyword research tool that not only provides accurate data but an effective strategy in using the right keywords that matters. You can use tools like SEMRush, Ahrefs, Ubersuggest 

Most of the keywords search tools are expensive, which costs you starting from $29 to over $100 per month.

2. Email Marketing Service Tools (From $0-$299/month)

Email marketing is another cost to start a blog. It is one of the best strategies in blogging, but also, it will take a lot of time and effort to manage your emails list. There are some email marketing services available for your choice.

For Budget bloggers:

One of the free options for budget bloggers is like MailChimp that you can use for free until your blog gets 2,000 subscribers. It seems to be quite nice but if you need more than this, you need to subscribe to their plans.

For Professional bloggers:

When your blog grows and has more visitors, you may need to pay for a more professional email marketing service.

For example, Mailchimp‘s professional plans start from $10 per $9.99 – $299 and up to send 200,000 emails almost automatically. So it’s your decision whether you want to use the free service or pay the price for more features.

cost to start a blog

3. Content writing service (From $0 – $80/1000 words)

Blogging is more than simply having a website; it’s about gaining an audience. If your content isn’t enticing enough to get people to read it, you’ll have worked hard for nothing. So content writing service is sometimes a good cost to start a blog.

For Budget bloggers:

Of course, you can do it for free and write it on your own and it cost $0. But it will take a lot of time and effort.

For Professional bloggers:

Unfortunately, if you want to move fast in the blogging world, you have no choice – Content writing service is a must. Time and effort will be saved if you use a professional content writer to do it for you. In this content writing service, there are some companies that can give their services online via freelancing sites like Upwork or Fiverr. But their rates are also depending on the type of work which rates from $10 to $80 (or more) per 1000 words.

4. Social Media Marketing Tools (From $0-$100/month)

It’s also one of the best ways to be found by your readers. The hard thing about social media marketing is you have a lot of platforms that you need to be active in. There are some tools that help you manage all these and count into your cost to start a blog.

For Budget bloggers:

You may use a number of free tools, such as post-scheduling systems, to make your jobs simpler. These tools, such as Buffer, Socialoomph, offer a free version for you to manage several social media platforms.

But when given for free, often have certain limits, but they considerably simplify social media work and help save money for additional tools.

For Professional bloggers:

One of the tools is Hootsuite, Buffer, or Tailwind that assists you in scheduling your updates across different social media sites at a time. This tool is very important especially if you have many things to do on your social media marketing. In this case, you can’t afford to spend your time updating each one of them daily every few hours.

This tool’s costs prices range from $5 – $100 per month.

5. SEO Optimization Tools (From $0 – $89/year)

Blogging with SEO is not just an option, it’s a must. Some of the SEO optimization tools you can use are the tools like Yoast, or Rankmath, which help you to track your keyword rankings, SEO audit, and most importantly, the optimization of your blog post.

For Budget bloggers:

Both Yoast and Rankmath offer a free version for beginners. Which is far enough for any beginner.

For Professional bloggers:

If you want to use their full features, you need to pay for them. (Yoast costs $89/year, while Rankmath costs $59-$499/year)

But in my own opinion, i suggest keeping the free basic plan to save your cost to start a blog unless your blog has grown in a very big size.

6. Image source costs (From $0 to $29/month)

Visuals will help you and your readers to understand and absorb the message. For this reason, it’s essential to use images in your blog post and invest as a cost to start a blog.

For Budget bloggers:

You can search and find all the royalty-free images online, for this purpose websites like Unsplash or Pexels are very helpful. But remember don’t put any images you find on the web without permission because if Google finds out you stole them, they will punish you by removing your website links or even removing your sites from their index.

For Professional bloggers:

If you want a more professional touch, you may consider buying copy-righted photos from subscription websites like Shutterstock ($29/month) This will help your blog to look nice and ready to be published in any design or color you want.

7. Investment in Blogging Courses (up to your budget)

Blogging courses are a great way to get started blogging. But they can add up in cost to start a blog very quickly.

I believe my money is well spent. It paid for itself within a couple of months and keep teaching me many things that are worth learning about blogging.

For Budget bloggers:

If you’re on a shoestring budget on the cost to start a blog, it may be difficult to justify the blog startup costs of taking blogging courses. You can learn how to start a blog for free from some free source like youtube, but there is some bad info on there as well and you need to make your own informed decisions about what is the best way to start your blog.

For Professional bloggers:

If your budget on the cost to start a blog is allowed, blogging courses can help you grow your blog faster. Most of the blogging course will teach how to start a blog in a professional manner and build scalable content on your blogs, and how to monetize your blog in a proven way.

For example, I took a blogging course from Wealthy Affiliate with a price $299/year (i am their member since 2016 until now as they help me to host all my blogs and also provide continuous online courses every week for me to learn new things).

The Authority Site System is another course i have enrolled in and highly recommend it. It’s one of the most comprehensive courses that taught me how to build an authority blog and drive visitors to your affiliate offers in a very effective way. It costs $997 as a lifetime payment.

If you’re interested to take a course to learn how to make money online via blogging, click here to discover the right course for you.

So, What’s the Actaully cost to start a blog As A Beginner?

What’s the cost to start a blog for beginners? The short answer is that it varies. Some of the most successful bloggers in the world have built their blogs with just a few hundred dollars, while others have invested more than $10,000.

Recommend Investment For Beginner Bloggers:

So how much does it cost to start a blog? For most beginners, I recommend an investment of around $100-$500 if you want to get off the ground quickly and with a good chance of long-term success. Remember, if you invest more than this amount, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your blog will be more successful—you may spend more money for less return on investment.

For LOW Budget Bloggers:

And if your budget is really tight, actually you can just pay for the $2.95/month for the 1st 36-month hosting plan from Bluehost, but you will need to spend unlimited time and effort to grow your blog.

You can also start totally FREE with Wealthy Affiliate, but it’s different to make money blogging in the long term as you will NOT have your own domain name. However, if you want to start it for a testing purpose, then it’s good to go.

Summary of cost to start a blog

  Low Budget Professional
Hosting $2.95/month
BlueHost (1st 36 months)
BlueHost (regular rate after 36 months)
Domain Name $0
free from Bluehost for 1st year
renewal fees after the 1st year from Bluehost
Blogging Platform $0
Blog Theme $0
free Kadence Theme
$89/ year
Divi Theme
Design Fees $0
Canva free account
from $5 ~ $50
depends on your need
Keyword Search Tools  $0
Google Trends for keyword research 
from $29 to over $100 /month
Ubersuggest,  AhrefsSEMRush,
Email Marketing Service $0
Free MailChimp account
$9.99 – $299
Pro MailChimp account
Content Writing Service $0
Write it yourself
$10 to $80 (or more) per 1000 words.
Social Media Marketing Tools $0
Free BufferSocialoomph account
$5 – $100 per month
Pro HootsuiteBuffer, or Tailwind 
SEO Optimization $0
Free version of Yoast and Rankmath 
$89/year Yoast 
$59-$499/year Rankmath 
Image Source Costs $0
free image from Unsplash or Pexels 
Blogging Courses $0
free video on Youtube
$299/ year Wealthy Affiliate 
$997/ lifetime The Authority Site System 

Tips about different ways to lower the cost To Start A Blog

If you are really on a tight budget on the cost to start a blog, or if you are simply looking for ways to cut costs, there are a variety of things you can do to lower the initial cost of starting your blog.

  • Start with the cheapest web hosting plan possible
  • Skip design elements that are frivolous until you have more time/ traffic/ revenue coming in monthly.
  • Take the free trial (if have) of the different tool before you decide to pay for it.
  • If you are unable to cover all the costs required for starting a blog, then it is much better to cut back on some expenses rather than compromising with quality or taking out loans, or putting in unnecessary investments.

Can I start Blogging For Free Actually?

Not sure if blogging is something for you to make money online? I will highly recommend you to start it as free to save your cost at the very beginning. And that’s my approach to my way of a full-time blogger too!

I started a free website with Wealthy Affiliate in 2016 for a testing purpose. Once i found blogging is something mean to me, then i upgraded my account and start to invest in some useful blogging tools to expand my business.

Check out my other post here about How to Start A Blog For Free if you are interested to start your free blog today!

Conclusion: How Much Does It Cost To Start A Blog

We’ve discussed how much it costs to start a blog and we hope this guide has been helpful.

From the cost of blogging hosting, domain name registration for your new website, and other expenses like web design or marketing tools- you should be able to estimate what starting a blog will set you back in time and money.

If you want to get started right away without spending too much upfront on getting set up with all these essential items at once then consider all free options we discussed above for budget bloggers!

Iam happy to answer any questions about how much does it cost to start a blog so don’t hesitate to leave a comment below if you need more information.

If you want to learn more about blogging, don’t miss out on my other guides below:


Hey, I’m Rose, the founder of RoseBlogSmart, a blog about how to make money blogging. I’ve tried many ways of making money online, but most of it is crap! But I finally found a legit way to make passive income from home that I can actually recommend – Become a full-time Blogger. Click here to learn more about how to start money blogging for beginners!

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