Hello and welcome to the blog.
As you’ve probably deduced – we’re running a WordPress website. Many hosts, outsourcers and other businesses the world-around use WordPress to power their sites. There are other website builders too with varying features and popularity. And while we might focus on those in a future installment, today I wanted to talk about the different kinds of WP – and which one might be best for you. Because it might actually matter, even if it’s not apparent at first.
A WordPress for every season.
Okay, well maybe not. But there are two main variations of WordPress that people use every day. Something you might find strange about them is that they look pretty much the same.
WordPress.org is the raw WP application. The site serves as a download location where you can get the latest version of the open-source software. Also, users can get access to a variety of plugins, themes and all the news and current affairs in the industry.
If the .org is the original application, then WordPress.com is the original WP hosting service. With plans ranging from free-to-expensive, WP.com exists as a multi-tier solution serving anyone from every day bloggers to eCommerce sites, corporate entities and other businesses that need a hands-on touch from paid professionals.
Both of these variations of the WordPress machine are related, and while we aren’t covering the how of it in this article, you can find out all about that here.
Predicting your needs.
I can’t do that. But I can give you a rough idea on how to do it for your self. At least, in regard to choosing the WP variation that’s right for you. It’s usually a fine idea to start with some self-examination:
What is the goal?
Am I just learning how to use a new software? Do I intend to share a blog with the world, or any sort of website/online content? Will I be operating a web store? Is this a site or hub for a corporation? How serious am I about my new WordPress site?
What are my capabilities?
Do you have a computer to work from? Access to one? Does it run well(video, for example)? You’ll need a decent computer system to work from. Also consider your skill level. Can you point and click? Can you code? How much time do you have to dedicate to it?
Putting it together.
Let’s say we have a person and they wants to build a site. After asking them to consider the above questions, we could surmise that they:
– Want to start blogging about their interests.
– Have a good computer to work with.
– Aren’t a coder, but has several years of computer experience.
– Want to spend an hour a day on their blog.
– Are fairly serious about doing this.
As a result, for this person I might recommend they work with a WordPress.com website. There’s no costs involved, but allows full access to the blogging platform without having to install or manage the hosting portion – giving more time to write all about their favorite topics. And, if desired, moving from the .com to .org platforms isn’t as hard now as it used to be.
For someone with more back-end experience on web servers, or maybe someone in the hosting industry – I’d likely suggest going the WordPress.org route. Most hosts have it installed anyway by default, and for those installing at home it allows you to keep full control of your data while you test and implement your site.
When you boil it all down, there’s no real wrong answer. Either platform is quite capable to host your blog. Just do what you’re comfortable with and it’s all up from here.