Did you hear about the Blogger shut-down in May that left thousands of businesses without their blogs for several days? That’s not good news; after all, what are bloggers to do without access to their blogs?
There are many blogging platforms in the blogosphere, the difficulty can be in knowing which one will work best for you, and will meet your blogging goals.
BlogTrafficExchange considers WordPress to be the best available blogging platform. Social Media Strategist Caroline Melberg agrees with that assessment. “WordPress offers unparalleled ease-of-use, vast amounts of plug-ins that offer the widest variety of functionality and search engine optimization benefits beyond compare – I recommend WordPress for all of our client blogs as a result.”
As you explore WordPress, you will find there are two versions: WordPress.com and WordPress.org. What’s the difference between the two?
WordPress.com is provided by WordPress, the Open Source blogging software. Hosting and managing the software is provided when you work with WordPress.com. It’s free and easy to setup, and upgrades, spam protection, backups and security are already taken care of. While free is a hard price to beat, the free version lacks the ability for you to fully-optimize the code of your site and at the end of the day, you are at the mercy of the WordPress servers – you don’t own your blog, WordPress does – so you can’t consider it a true asset of your business.
When using the WordPress.org version of the software, you will need to download and install the free software on your own server or with a 3rd party website hosting provider. Downloading and hosting the software on your own server allows you to fully optimize your blog’s code (resulting in better search engine optimization for your blog), allows you to upload additional functionality and best of all, means you are in control and own your own blog – it is an asset within your business.
1. WordPress software is free, and is extremely user-friendly for even a web novice to use (installing/hosting on your own server is a nominal cost for the power it gives you)
2. It functions as a CMS (content management system), so you don’t need to know HTML to make frequent updates
3. It’s open source, so there is a thriving community of developers who have created plug-ins that allow you to add powerful functionality to your blog
4. It allows you to schedule your posts (so you aren’t chained to your desk)
5. It’s SEO-friendly out of the ‘box’ and installing the software on your own hosting server allows you to fully optimize the code
6. It comes with thousands of pre-configured themes and allows for complete customization to match your branding or desired design
7. Installing and hosting WordPress on your hosting server allows you to own your own blog (giving you control and a saleable asset within your business)
“For these reasons, I always recommend downloading and hosting your own blog with WordPress.org. This gives you the most flexibility in terms of adding functionality through plug-ins, the most opportunity to fully optimize your blog, and ultimately your blog becomes a saleable asset within your business,” says Caroline.