Alison works extremely hard at her catering business and needed a simple website that she did not have to worry about maintaining.
One of my favourite ways to think about the difference between WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress is to compare building a website to building with lego bricks.
If you choose WordPress.com it’s like being given a big bucket of lego bricks and a solid table, in a secure room, to build on.
You can build for free but your table will have advertising posters displayed on its side and you have no control over which adverts are pasted there. You’ll be able to invite friends to come round and admire your model, but the address on the invitation (your domain name) will include the word “WordPress”. There will be a range of different WordPress themes you can use (I’m not sure how that fits the lego analogy) but you can’t install your own.
Buying the relatively cheap Personal plan allows you to get rid of the adverts on the “table” and the WordPress name in your address (although there will still be a discrete WordPress logo in the footer of your website).
Long Buckby & Brington Baptist Church have a website but I added a WordPress.com blog, using the Sequential theme, to display the photographs taken by myself and other church members and visitors.
Much as I like WordPress, I realise that some of the alternatives could also be good choices for building a website. I decided to make a test site to compare a few of the popular options. This post concerns self-hosted WordPress and WordPress.com.
Self-hosted WordPress is flexible and customisable. It can be extended, using plugins, to suit a variety of different types of site. But, if you choose to use it, then you should accept that you will be responsible for maintaining it.
WordPress is a popular and powerful content management system. Weebly is an easy to use drop and drag website builder. Squarespace is a website builder with attractive templates and useful features.