This is an update of How to Build A Website on WordPress, originally published May 2, 2013.
This is the first of a series of posts about How to Build A WordPress Website. In this series, I'll tell you what tools I'm using here and for my other sites. You'll get my reviews and opinions about these tools. I'll let you know how well they work for me, what problems came up, and if they worked as advertised or not.
This will come as no surprise to those of you know me... I really love building websites using WordPress for myself, and now for others. It's about freedom… The time was to have a website meant paying designers and webmasters to do it for you. Even today, that might be a good option for you if your time is better spent doing other things.
Today, anyone who wants to can make their own WordPress website. They can publish their ideas or sell their thing using WordPress as their digital soapbox. For many people… that's all they need.
WordPress is easy to use, easy to edit, and totally customizable. WordPress is by far, the world's most popular Content Management System (CMS). In fact, 26.4% of the web uses it. In fact, as of March 2016, WordPress.org powers over 15,886,000 websites on the entire web. WordPress.com powers over 76.5 Million websites! [Sources: https://www.codeinwp.com/blog/wordpress-statistics/ and https://managewp.com/statistics-about-wordpress-usage]
There are two versions of WordPress. WordPress.com and WordPress.org.
WordPress.com is free to use. Millions of people use WordPress.com for their personal blogging needs. For a lot of people, WordPress.com is all they need. One thing though… You don't have total control of the page. WordPress.com is free because 1) they can put their ads on your page, and 2) you need a WordPress.com account to use Akismet and Jetpack when you're self-hosting a WordPress website.
For control freaks, developers, or business people, the self-hosted WordPress.org is what to use. Buy your domain and hosting, install WordPress, then install a theme. Installing WordPress on our own domain and hosting is a simple and straightforward process.
Remember the TV show "The Outer Limits"? In the show's opening, they said "Do not adjust your TV set. We control the horizontal. We control the vertical..." Because you own infrastructure, you are in control of everything your visitors see. Make your site look exactly how you want it to be. Put text, pictures, videos, slideshows, music or other audio wherever you want. Put popups on your site? Be careful doing that. You can put your own or affiliate ads on your site or not. Having this control lets you get your message across to your visitors in the best way possible.
Advantages When You Build a Website with WordPress.org:
- Easy installation and maintenance
- Coding is useful, but not required
- Totally customizable
- Easy to update and organize
- Search engine friendly
- Better security than HTML sites
- A vast selection of free and premium themes and plugins
- A large, giving community to help you out when you need it.
Here are a few disadvantages:
- WordPress updates happen often. Sometimes this can cause bugs or erratic behavior. Usually, this is due to plugins or add-ons to your site that conflict with the newer version.
- By default, doesn't use a WYSIWYG editor (What you see is what you get). Today there are many WordPress Page Builder Plugins that do let you see your page or post in real time.
Even though it has a few warts, when you build a website on WordPress, you are using a state of the art tool. I encourage you to use WordPress too. It powers all of the websites I create for myself and commercial clients. Check out my company’s site, Rock Solid Blogs or its companion site (this one) Rock Solid Info.
What's your opinion of WordPress? Do you have questions about using it? Contact me. I can help.