As an Agency, Webdirexion uses the .org version of WordPress that our Content Administrator, Shermain Pascual, explains below. There’s a lot to learn about it, and WordPress is upgraded regularly, so Shermain has some thoughts about coming up to speed as you begin understanding WordPress.
Are you new to Content administration and Content Marketing with WordPress? I know not all of us are technically inclined to understand the world wide web and how it operates. I too find myself at a crossroad where I question things that seem relevant and interesting but in which I have totally no experience, no background at all on that specific subject. Same goes for when I first stumbled upon WordPress.
I was looking for a blog engine that would support my blog and WordPress was the first thing I saw when I Googled for “best blog engine”. The list also included Movable Type, Drupal, Joomla, Typepad, Blogger among others, but since WordPress was number one on the list, I decided to look further into it.
I did some research on how to run a blog using WordPress and found out that WordPress runs in two types: WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Wow! Could this get more complicated? I’m no geek and was overwhelmed by the amount of information on my screen about WordPress and I felt like reading alien things and deciphering codes! But since I’ve read a lot of good feedback from WordPress users regarding the ease of use of it, I continued to dig deeper into it.
Two WordPress Learning Resources:
- WordPress.TV – a lot of videos from WordPress Camp to help you learn more about the platform
- WordPress Codex — a robust and frequently updated online manual
What is WordPress, and what’s the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com?
Here’s how Tris Hussey author of More Than Just A Book: Using WordPress, defines WordPress:
WordPress is a blog engine, meaning it is a website made up of individual articles or posts, where the posts are listed on the homepage with the newest article at the top of the page (in reverse chronological order). A blog engine is software that runs on a web server, not your machine at home, which makes a blog work. It is also a Content Management System or CMS.
WordPress also won “Best Open Source CMS”, over Joomla and Drupal, way back in 2009, from PACKT Publishing, and it’s made a lot of strides since then to add even more CMS features.
WordPress, from WordPress.org is open source, meaning to say that users can look at the inner workings of WordPress and modify how things work to their own liking. The ease of modifying things is one of the characteristics that WordPress possess which is why a lot of users are opting for it. It’s also why there are over 17,000 plugins available for it, though we like to minimize their use for our Agency clients, because poorly written or outdated plugins can cause conflicts.
According to Tris Hussey:
WordPress.org is where you can download WordPress and where you find plugins and themes to add onto your install.
WordPress.com is a service run by the company Automatic that Matt Mullenweg and others founded to provide free, hosted version of WordPress.
At WordPress.com you can set up your site but the your site’s name will bear WordPress at the end of it — domainname.wordpress.com unless you purchase an upgrade. While if you use the program downloaded from WordPress.org, you can get your domain registered and a hosting subscription with a hosting company so you can carry your domain without WordPress.com at the end of the site’s name — domainname.com. You have a lot more freedom in terms of your design, plugins, and control of your site when you use the downloadable version on your own host, which is how we do it for our Agency clients.
Identifying which could be the best for you is simple, if you are a freelance blogger, WordPress.com is sufficient — in fact if you are a content administrator for a WordPress system at your company you might want to run your own side blog there — it will make you better at what you do. But if you are someone starting out a business and would like to maximize SEO, A/B testing, and Content Marketing, I personally think WordPress.org would be your best bet.
When you need the level of support and WordPress development like we provide for clients, you can check out how we use Content Marketing Strategy and WordPress to build Custom Websites.