WordPress is a powerful, flexible, customisable and easy to use platform for building websites or blogs. There are nearly 70 million websites using it on the Internet today, including this one!
It is the software (database and code) that provides the interface for you to add your styling (theme) and content. There are thousands of pre built plug-ins and themes (free and premium) for you to custom your website to your exact needs.
About half of of the WordPress websites are hosted on WordPress.com and the other half are “self hosted” which means that the open source WordPress software has been installed on the web hosting elsewhere.
It can be confusing when you start to decide which is the best for you. Therefore I have put together a simple list of the advantages and disadvantages of both.
Advantages of WordPress.com
- It’s free.
- It’s easy to get started.
- It’s well maintained.
- It’s already set up for you.
- Additional features are available for a small fee, for example you can use your own domain, and you can have access to your theme’s CSS code to personalise it.
Disadvantages of WordPress.com
- You don’t have complete flexibility.
- You are restricted to which themes you can install.
- You cannot install any plugins.
Advantages of Self Hosting
- You have access to all the code so you have complete flexibility.
- You can use whatever theme, plugin or widget you like.
- You can add advertising and start generating an income from your blog.
Disadvantages of Self hosting
- It costs more, with the web hosting & domain fees.
- With the flexibility comes the responsibility of keeping your site operational as not all themes and plugins work together as you would expect.
- For security and stability you have to handle backups and updates.
If you want to discuss the options further with me then please get in touch. I can help you get started on either WordPress.com or self hosted.