Getting started with WordPress?
You may not have known, but there are a couple different options when getting started with WordPress. There’s wordpress.org and then there’s wordpress.com. What’s the difference? How do you know which one to choose? They are both WordPress, both quality blogging platforms and the platforms themselves are both free. (At least at the entrance level).
WordPress.com offers free setup, a free domain name (example.wordpress.com), free hosting and guides you through the set up. Sounds pretty good, right?
If you’re just wanting to test things out, this might be a good place to start. There are, however, some limitations to the free account.
WordPress.com limits you
First off, if you’re wanting a custom domain name (example.com) – which, to be honest, looks a lot more professional than having the wordpress.com subdomain, then you need to upgrade to a paid version.
They allow you to choose a free theme but there are far less to choose from than with wordpress.org. You’re also only able to make minor customizations. If you would like to customize the theme’s template or make any changes to the coding, you will need to upgrade.
You won’t be able to use Google Adsense with any wordpress.com plan. Google Adsense gives you the ability to make money by allowing Google to post ads on your site. We will talk more about this later. wordpress.org allows this and you can actually make a significant amount of money with the right traffic.
If you’re using a free wordpress.com account, WordPress actually has the right to advertise on your website for free. With wordpress.org, you can decide whether or not you want advertisements on your site and if you do, the money goes to you, not WordPress.
Next, there’s Google Analytics. It’s a website event tracking software that is actually a very valuable tool. If you want this installed on your wordpress.com site, you will need to upgrade to the business plan. This is their most expensive plan at $24.92 USD / month (billed annually).
WordPress.org is the way to go
With wordpress.org, you can install Google Analytics for free. Google Analytics lets you track your number of visitors, page views, bounce rate and much more. We will go over it in a lot more detail later on along with the simple installation process.
The benefit of wordpress.org is having more control over your website at a lower price. If you want the same sort of control with wordpress.com (minus the ability to use Google Adsense), you’ll need their business plan – $24.92 USD / month (at the time of writing this). Plus, WordPress charges you annually – $299.04 USD. That’s a bit of a hit.
The downside to getting started with wordpress.org is that it does take a couple extra steps to sep up. But trust me, its’s still really easy. Instead of going to wordpress.org and downloading the platform there, the easiest way is to find a company to host your domain and then install WordPress in your cPanel. It’s easier than it might sound and you can do this for just $2.99/month. Whether you download WordPress through their website or through a hosting company, every website needs hosting. And at this price, you really can’t go wrong.
Set everything up through ideahost
ideahost is a popular hosting company with a great reputation and with one of the most user friendly dashboards I’ve come across. This is a big thing for me because I value my time and I’m not a computer wiz. ideahost sets you up for only $2.99 / month, provides you with a free domain, free 24/7 customer support and they make the WordPress setup as easy as a few clicks.
Getting started with WordPress has never been easier. All the top hosting companies make it a breeze and are there for free 24/7 customer support if you need it.