As an avid reader of books and various articles both in newspapers and online I have always had the urge to test my writing skills. The usage of jargons and the blend of sophisticated words that the authors achieved with their articles always enticed me. I wanted to start with a blog of my own and so went about researching the requirements to start a blog and the what’s and how’s of blogging.
What is the Best Blogging Platform?
After talking to several blogging enthusiasts, I came to know that blogspot.com or bloggers.com are the different websites that break the entry barrier for an individual to blogging. Though I don’t understand much about the technicalities that go behind building a blog and making it attractive for users to read I realized bloggers.com or blogspot.com are not much help in terms of their GUI, themes and plugin support etc.
I turned to my friend Akshat Choudhary for help and he suggested I go for WordPress based blogs which with a very intelligently designed code to enhance the look and feel of your website.
Since I had to know what WordPress will do for me, I followed up on it. I went through the book ‘WordPress for Dummies’ by Lisa Sabin-Wilson for a start and then supported the knowledge by going through articles on the web. I started with WordPress tutorials and video tutorials and then went through different articles posted on wp.tutsplus.com and elitebydesign.com. For a person who is passionate about blogging and wants to maintain an online diary, WordPress will provide the best interface through which you could connect to your readers.
Introduction to WordPress: WordPress for Beginners
Today, WordPress is the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world being used by millions of websites. The best thing about WordPress is that it is an Open Source project which can be used by anyone over the web which means you can use it for anything be it your personal diary, your travel accounts or your views on any subject for that matter. WordPress is an excellent platform for building a variety of websites. Besides building a blogging site, WordPress can be used to build an e-commerce website, portfolio sites, business websites, new sites, and more. Famous WordPress websites include TechCrunch, Mashable, The New York Times’s blog, etc.
Some of the features offered by WordPress are private and password protected WordPress posts and pages, easy importing, WordPress installation and upgrades, a full WordPress theme and plugin system, multiple authors, spam protection and intelligent text formatting. So, ‘WordPress is only limited by your imagination’.
Is WordPress Completely Free?
WordPress is a free open source software. An open source software is a software that comes with the freedom to be developed, modified, redistributed and used by anyone. That said, there are costs involved and we’ll talk about them later in the article.
Why is WordPress a free software? And why would anyone create something that comes free of cost? Why not sell a product you’ve created. That could’ve been done had an individual or single company owned WordPress. Being an open source software, hundreds of web developer have contributed to the development of the software. There is a core team that leads the development process but anyone can contribute to making the software better, at various capacities. To understand the WordPress’ philosophy checkout WordPress website.
There are many successful businesses built around WordPress, for instance, there are WordPress hosting companies like WPEngine, WordPress backup plugins such as BlogVault and security plugins like MalCare, premium WordPress form plugin like Gravity Forms, etc. All said and done, it’s important to note that WordPress is not copyright free.
What is the Difference Between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?
There is a lot of confusion around the difference between wordpress.com and wordpress.org. They are very different from one another. While WordPress.com is a hosting provider and from WordPress.org you can download the WordPress software. Both While you can create a website by hosting it on WordPress.com but you’ll also require that WordPress software which you can only get from WordPress.org. Both platforms come with its share of advantages and disadvantages. Let’s take a look at them:
WordPress Introduction: WordPress.com Advantages and Disadvantages
- For casual bloggers who can’t afford to create a website just to put out their thoughts and opinions out in the world, WordPress.com is perfect. With WordPress.com you can create a website and get free space for up to 3GB.
- If you end up writing a lot and need more space then, then you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan.
- The best part about creating a site with WordPress.com is that you don’t have to manually take care of the website. No updating of WordPress plugins or themes or the core. The site takes care of itself.
- There are many limitations to WordPress.com free websites. To start off, you’d find many WordPress advertisements on your site. People coming to your website will click on the ads and WordPress will make money, not the user.
- Besides that, WordPress.com sites don’t allow users to place ads on your website. Even if posts in WordPress is search engine optimized and appears on Google’s first page, you can’t monetize the website. This is because you are on the free WordPress.com plan. If you decide to upgrade, you’ll be eligible to participate in WordPress’ very own advertising program called WordAds.
- One of the most significant limitations is that you can’t use a plugin of your choice. Neither can you upload a customized theme that could’ve helped you extend the functionality and features of the theme. In the free WordPress website, there’s only JetPack service already available to you. That said, if you upgrade to the Business plan, you can install plugins from a select few. But with the VIP plan, you can install any plugin or theme. However, the VIP plan is very expensive and offers only a limited number of WordPress themes.
- In the free WordPress website, installing Google Analytics is impossible. This is a privilege only reserved for Business Plan users. Needless to say, the plan is extremely expensive.
- When users the Terms of Service, WordPress has the right to delete their website.
- All free WordPress sites have a WordPress website link that you can only get rid of by upgrading.
- Types of websites like Membership sites and eCommerce websites are difficult to build using WordPress.com and they don’t offer advanced features like integrated payment.
WordPress Introduction: WordPress.org Advantages and Disadvantages
- You can download the WordPress software from WordPress.org. Get yourself a domain name and web hosting and then install WordPress manually and your website is ready. You can create the website yourself or get a web designer to do it for you.
- Once you create a website, the site is under your control. You can design it as it suits you.
- There are abundant options available for plugin and themes. There are free, paid and even custom plugins to choose from.
- You can run advertisements on your website and make money out of your website.
- You will have the ability to link your website to tools like Google Analytics that’ll help you track your traffic. Information from the Analytics will help you serve your readers better and increase your traffic.
- Creating membership sites or e-commerce websites are easy and no big deal.
- WordPress software may be free of cost but, you will still end up paying for the domain and web host services.
- Depending on your need and your web host provider, you can end up shelling quite a lot of money to build and maintain your website.
- Moreover, you will have to update the WordPress core, plugins and themes manually. Although it’s not difficult to do manually update websites, it requires you to frequently login into your website. This becomes a hassle if you have a large number of websites to manage.
- Backing up your wordpress.org blogs are entirely the responsibility of the website owners. The good news is there are plenty of backup services to choose from. Be sure to choose an automated backup service so that you don’t have to manually backup your website over and over again. Likewise, security service is also required that’ll help secure your website.
All said and done, there’s one important thing to note. If you have a website on WordPress.com, you can migrate it to WordPress.org. Getting started with WordPress is not too difficult. There are plenty of WordPress beginner tutorials and other WordPress tutorials that’ll show you how to use WordPress to create a website.
Now that your blog is ready you would want to ensure its longevity, right? Malware, spam, and crashes are the nightmares of any successful blogger but with blogVault.net which backs and secures your WordPress site, you can put your worries aside. It not only says it backs your blog but also shows where your blog has been backed and secured through its unique Test-Restore feature.
If you are already using WordPress, back it with BlogVault. The best solution for the security and backup of your WordPress site.