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Should I use a hosted or self-hosted WordPress solution?

WordPress is the most popular Blogging platform on the Internet. It’s best hosted on LAMP (Linux OS, Apache Server, MySQL DB, PHP) and is free open source software created by the WordPress Foundation. It was started in the far 2004 by Matt Mullenweg and in 2010 WordPress was one of the most stable open source CMSs and now it’s even more powerful and used by approximately 23% of all web sites on the Web.

WordPress is so powerfil that it’s surely the best choice for creating most types of websites like:

  • typical blogs
  • company website
  • online store
  • educational site,
  • a portfolio creative site
  • social platform or
  • multi language high traffic portal

There are many advantages WordPress has, some of which are:

  • Specialized Blogging features
  • Friendly Admin panel
  • Top class Premium Themes with Responsive design
  • Variety of Plugins that easily add new features – Free and Premium
  • SEO Friendly site

All that turns WordPress into a kind of LEGO constructor which empowers everyone to create great websites even with less tech skills and in short time!

So here are the main differences between a hosted and a self-hosted WordPress site?

Hosted Solution

The creators of WordPress provide a so called hosted solution called WordPress.com. This is the most popular blog hosting service provider for WordPress owned by Automattic made by the founder WordPress Matt Mullenweg and powered an altered version of it. It provides free blogging service for registered users and is financially supported via paid upgrades, “VIP” services and advertising.

This means that all hosting maintenance is managed by the service and the basic plan is free, and if you’d like extra features like a premium theme or custom domain name like yourname.com you have to pay additionally for that. There are also some disadvantages:

– You have limited use in terms of plugins – you cannot upload your own plugins

– You do not have access to the programming code and can only edit content via the Admin editor

– You cannot change theme’s colors and code unless you pay for this feature

There is a VIP user membership where you get those extra features like CSS editor, Domain Registration and mapping, No Ads, URL Redirection, Video Upload, and more storage and yet it still limited in some way. Probably what’s best is the WordPress.com have awesome hosting servers and are really fast.

Self-Hosted Solution

The free downloadable version of WordPress at WordPress.org is a ZIP archive file with all source files, which you need a web hosting server to run on. For this reason you need to have a Hosting service to install WordPress on and link a domain of your choice to that account. You may need some tech skills or at least high level of knowledge about how web servers work. Also to customize the site’s look and feel you’d need a theme which you need to upload and setup layout together with necessary plugins. It may look a little techy to do this if you are a non-technical person but here are the advantages to choose this option:

– You have unlimited control over the your site and content and can easily tweak it

– You can install various themes and plugins, including premium to enhance functionality

– You pay just for the domain and hosting, but no other extra fee for additional features – it’s all your choice

You can choose which option works better for you. Yet in case you need to have a more complex customization of your website it is required to have a full access to the source code, database and server settings. In this case I’d recommend from my own experience as a Web Developer to use a Self-Hosted WordPress solution:

WPEngine – This is the World’s Best Fully-Managed WordPress Hosting Platform and has a variety of advantages and features for a self-hosted WordPress solution which allow you to concentrate on your website and not server issue solving. As they call it:

“Hassle-Free WordPress Hosting”

You can find thousands of them at:

Theme Forest

Code Canyon

Good luck with you new web site! 🙂

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