Over the last few days I’ve been reviewing the amount I spend on blogging.
Considering that I only do it as a hobby these days, it takes a fair amount of money to keep it going.
I managed to convince myself I needed to spend even more money on other services to support that too.
In reality though, whilst you have to invest a certain amount, there’s no point in throwing money away either.
Now I’ve cut things down a little, my spending on blogging is more manageable.
What Has Been Given The Chop?
I like using Buffer more than any other social media tool but I don’t use it enough to warrant the price tag.
It’s because social media doesn’t hold the draw for me that it once did.
The only social media site I’m generally active on is Instagram nowadays.
I log into Twitter and Facebook most days but I struggle to enjoy the experience.
Twitter in particular has become a place where people just share links and I find it hard to see the wood from the trees, even with lists.
Once my Buffer Pro account has run out I won’t be renewing it.
It will be fine to use the free account since I don’t really use Pinterest and I don’t often post more than ten social media posts a day.
What I spend on blogging will improve somewhat!
When I get around to reading other blogs, I tend to do it through Feedly as much as I can.
Some blogs don’t provide their full RSS feed so I have to go to their blog but I tend to skip these unless the post looks interesting.
Since I don’t read as many blog posts as I used to, I don’t need all of the features that Feedly Pro gives me.
It was handy to filter out certain things I wasn’t interested in but I don’t think I was using it to its full potential.
I’m not sure if I’ll be restricted to 100 feeds by moving back to the free account as I joined before they imposed that limit.
If I am, that’s fine because it will force me to really think about what it is I want to read.
Another service to go after my review of what I spend on blogging is Quuu.
I was using the free service but upgraded a few months ago because they offered me a good discount.
It’s a useful service if you want to look busy on a social network because the folks at Quuu relevant stuff to share for you.
If you have a paid account it’s all automatic and you can set it and forget it.
The trouble is it does feel like you’re becoming a robot on your social media accounts.
Whilst I’m not as active as I once was, I still like to jump in at least once a day and take a look at what’s going on.
You’ll notice that the common trend around the services I’m getting rid of is social media.
Since it doesn’t feel as important to me or my blogging world any more, it’s the obvious place to save some money.
I won a year’s subscription to Jetpack Premium a few months ago.
I was ready to sign up for another year when that runs out but I’ve decided at this time I can’t justify the extra expense.
Jetpack is a really useful tool for many reasons and I love using many of the features it has.
However, at the moment I can live without the premium features and just stick with the free ones.
It really is time to take a closer look at what I’m spending on blogging and cut back.
Just like with Buffer and Feedly I’ll be fine using the free features of Jetpack for the foreseeable future.
I can always revisit that decision in the future should I decide I need all that Jetpack Premium has to offer.
What Is Being Swapped?
I really enjoyed using Squirrly Pro a lot and found it extremely useful.
Optimising articles with the Live Assistant is intuitive and makes it easy to write a human-friendly article that’s also SEO-friendly.
I’d also been thinking about whether I could sustain the monthly cost going forward though.
The conclusion was that since I’m consolidating things, I should either move back to the Old Squirrly plan or use Yoast SEO.
In this instance I decided I’d give Yoast SEO another go since I hadn’t used it for a number of years.
The free version is incredibly powerful and I’m surprised at how much they give away for nothing.
So Squirrly Pro has made way for Yoast SEO.
What I’m Sticking With
I’ve been with SiteGround ever since I restarted this blog and they’ve very rarely let me down.
Several months ago I had an issue with a plugin which caused some resource issues on the server where my blog is hosted.
The customer service team at SiteGround soon gave me some tips to resolve the issue and it was very quickly sorted.
I’ve also had an issue with my SSL certificate renewing last month but I’m hoping that won’t happen again!
For the price of hosting with SiteGround you get a great service, responsive support and a fast website experience.
That’s why I chose to use them again at my last hosting renewal.
I could have just copied one from the internet and hoped for the best but that didn’t feel like a long term strategy.
It’s worth paying for such a comprehensive service and it’s surprisingly cheap.
I also use the cookie consent banner provided by iubenda as it comes as part of the paid account.
I still feel a hell of a lot better using there’s than cobbling one together off the internet or paying the earth for a solicitor to write me a bespoke one.
I’ve used other caching plugins in the past but I always get the best results with WP Rocket.
It works well with SiteGround’s own caching solution and helps to speed up my blog.
In fact without it, I’d find it almost impossible to get Cloudfront set up.
Sure there are free plugins out there which can do a reasonable job at caching your site.
But I’d bet that they’re a whole lot more complicated to set up and don’t have as many features.
That’s why WP Rocket will stay as a central part of my spend on blogging.
Are You Aware Of How Much You Spend On Blogging?
It’s easy to get carried away with spending loads of cash on blogging and all that comes with it.
Have you done a similar exercise recently to consolidate your spending?
What did you keep, what did you swap, and what did you get rid of?