Q: Where should I host my blog? Is a hosted service better or should I host it myself?
A: When it comes to a Business Blog, we would always recommend that you host it yourself for the simple reason that it gives you most control over it and allows you to make any changes that you may require.
Hosted systems such as Blogger are great for personal blogs because they are free and because there is very little for you to do except start to write. They do come with a risk though, as there may come a time when you want to do more with your blog than can be done with a hosted system of this type, at which point it is very difficult to move all of your content across to your new blog. Even making permanent (301) redirects so that people can still find all of your content that has been indexed is not possible on some of these blog systems, which will make for a lot of frustration.
There have even been cases reported where proper Business blogs have been mistaken for spam blogs (splogs) and had their content deleted. Not a good situation! As we point out in the Business Blogging email course, making the right choice in terms of your blogging platform is a key early decision.
If you do decide to host it yourself, you have a second decision to make whether to select a new domain name and run your blog there or whether you should incorporate the blog into your current website. Both options have merit. If it deals with issues which are distinct from those that you talk about on your main website then it may be sensible to select a relevant domain name and separate the two. However, by incorporating the Business Blog alongside your other content (and integrating it graphically into the look and feel of the site) then you can use it as a complementary means of engaging with prospects and customers, and so enhance the positioning of your business through it.
Both of these hosted options are valid but overall, primarily for reasons of control and security, we would recommend that you steer away from hosted services for your blog when it is going to be such an integral part of your business.