Which Is Better: WordPress or Hosting?
When it comes to running a blog, arguably one of the most vital decisions you’ll need to make is choosing a host. After all, you’ll be living on this platform for the rest of your blogging life. So it’s important that you pick something that’s going to be reliable and easy to use.
Now, there are certainly a host of benefits to using WordPress. Not only is it a popular and well-established platform, but it also has a plethora of free features that can help you get up and running with your blog quickly and easily. This includes things like automatic backups, drag & drop page builders, and more.
On the surface, it would appear that WordPress is the clear choice. However, if your ultimate goal is to grow your blog into a money-making machine, you’ll want to consider another option: hosted blog platforms. Lets dive into the differences between WordPress and hosting so you can pick the right option for your needs.
Let’s face it, not all bloggers are created equal. Some prefer to write in-depth thought-provoking content, while others just want to have fun and entertain their readers. No matter what your motivation is for blogging, the platform you choose is going to dictate the kind of content you can produce and deliver to your audience. WordPress gives you the freedom to write and publish whatever you want, whenever you want, with the click of a button.
On the surface, WordPress seems to have it all. Not only does it have a large and growing platform, but it also has a thriving online community that provides tons of support if you ever need it. And did we mention it’s completely free?
However, when it comes to actually using the platform, you’ll quickly learn that WordPress is far from perfect. Its interface is a bit messy, and although the functionality is pretty much there, some things just aren’t convenient to use yet. For example, if you’re looking to make money from your blog, you’ll need to do a lot of the heavy lifting yourself. There’s no ready-made solutions or plugins that will help you with getting your blog noticed. And although WordPress gives you complete freedom, it comes with a few tradeoffs. To start with, WordPress is a bit complex and can be a bit overwhelming for first-time users.
Now, if you’re confident that you’re able to use WordPress without any issues, then go ahead and choose this platform. However, if you’re looking for a more streamlined experience, then you might want to consider another option.
Although WordPress was never intended to be used for commercial purposes, it still has a lot of the quirks and interface elements that you’d normally find in a product geared toward professional use. For example, you can’t simply install WordPress and start generating content without first understanding how to use a few basic tools. Also, if you’re looking to make money from your blog, you’ll need to take the time to figure out how to optimize your content so it can be found and accessed more easily by search engines like Google.
This is in comparison to hosting which is designed to be a more simplified experience for users who are just getting started. You don’t need to have any previous experience in using a computer to be able to use a hosted blog platform. Furthermore, when you sign up for hosting, you’ll often be given a range of tools to help you get started. Sometimes this can include a domain name, and most importantly, a login to access your content. Anything beyond that, such as taking up billing etc, is usually taken care of by the platform.
This level of simplicity makes hosting a popular choice among bloggers who are just getting started. Or, who want to switch to a commercial-ready platform after using a free version for personal or hobby use.
Installing WordPress is free, but it requires you to have a pretty decent web host. The cost of maintaining a WordPress blog comes from the monthly fee that you have to pay to your web host. There are also additional charges when you decide to upgrade your plan or whenever you want to install a new WordPress blog. So, while the initial cost of installing WordPress is free, the price you’ll have to pay is pretty high. This isn’t to say that you won’t be able to find cheaper options elsewhere, but it’s usually in the form of a one-time setup fee rather than a monthly fee. Moreover, if you’re looking for a simple, no-frills solution, then hosted blogs are the way to go. You’ll find literally hundreds of hosting companies that provide a one-click install, robust features, and a reliable service.
WordPress is a powerful platform, but it requires a bit of leg work to get up and running. If you’re looking for a simpler solution, then you might want to consider another option.
Who’s Behind WordPress?
It’s important to understand the history and the people behind the platform you’re considering using. WordPress was originally designed as a blogging platform for the solo blogger. However, as the platform grew in popularity, it gradually became a bit more mainstream. Today, anyone from personal bloggers to enterprise-level businesses are using WordPress. This includes large media companies like The New York Times, the BBC, and more.
The team at WordPress genuinely cares about the platform and the community around it. This is why they continuously innovate and try to make the platform as easy to use as possible. And it’s also shown in the fact that they’ve released over 500 updates to the platform since its creation in 2003.
WordPress has also been the subject of several books and documentaries. If you’re interested in learning more about the platform, then you can check out The Best Blogger for 2015, The Founder by Brad Feld, or the Netflix documentary, Revolutionary, which follows the story of WordPress. If you’re curious about how the platform grew to be so ubiquitous, then you can also look into the story of its creator, Matt Mullenweg. With over a decade of experience building, launching, growing, and monetising successful blogs, you can be confident that Matt’s advice on how to make money from a blog is as current as it can be. Not only that, but you can also ask him yourself! You can now grab a free copy of the complete guide to blogging, The Ultimate Blogger’s Guide to Money-Making, which covers everything you need to know about blogging and monetizing your content.
WordPress was originally built with the thought that it would be perfect for the solopreneur or the hobby blogger. However, if your blog is going to make money, then you’re going to have to do a bit of research into which platform is the best for that. It’s definitely worth noting, however, that regardless of which platform you choose, the only way to make money from a blog is through monetisation. This means either selling and displaying ads on your site, or earning affiliate commissions from the products and services you recommend.