Friday Fun is a group post from the writers of the NHWN blog. Each week, we’ll pose and answer a different, get-to-know-us question. We hope you’ll join in by providing your answer in the comments.
QUESTION: This week’s question comes from reader Kernan Manion, MD. He writes, “I would like to hear your thoughts about choice of WP.com vs. WP.org and hosting on a web-host. Did you go through a thought process of pros and cons or was it primarily expediency?”
Lee Laughlin: At the time we started this blog, the leading free platforms were Blogger and WordPress. WordPress was definitely the way to go if we wanted to put a forth a professional image. Early on, we wanted the focus to be the words, not the technology. Although we knew each other, we weren’t really sure where this was going to go when we started, so we tried to keep the financial investment to a minimum. As we’ve progressed, there really hasn’t been a reason to change from wp.com to wp.org. Before we discussed this post, I wrote a blog post about moving my personal blog from wp.org to wp.com. Given our time constraints as a group, wp.com works well for us. We chip in for a few bells and whistles and stick with our original mission of letting the words be the focus. There are other platforms out there and everyone needs to make the choice that works for their situation, but we’re happy where we are.
Jamie Wallace: WordPress offers a good side-by-side comparison of their .com vs. .org offerings, and since I definitely fall into Lee’s words-not-technology category, I defer to them as the experts. That said, all the other websites I’ve launched (including the one for my marketing business) are built on WordPress.org (the self-hosted option). In retrospect, however, now that I know you can have a custom domain for a small annual fee, I might have chosen to go with a WordPress-hosted option. After all, they provide all the important security and back-up features that I worry about screwing up with my self-hosted sites. If you’re a beginner with not a lot of technology expertise, I’d say to stick with WordPress.com. They keep things simple, safe, and relatively stress-free.
Julie Hennrikus: Julianne Holmes has a WordPress.org site that I need to get launched. J.A. Hennrikus has a WordPress.com site. For my day job, I have a WordPress.org site that uses a couple of great plug-ins. For me, it is that flexibility that makes .org valuable. There is a learning curve, but it is doable. I have also heard that you can monetize .org sites more easily, which is worth thinking about.
Diane MacKinnon: Well, I just learned a lot about wordpress.com vs wordpress.org by reading this post! I’m not that technically savvy so I just haven’t paid attention to what we use here. I’m in the process of redoing my life coaching website and I just emailed the web designer I’m working with to ask if I’m going to have a wordpress.com or wordpress.org site. You’d think I’d know this but I don’t. My blog page (www.dianemackinnon.com/blog) is currently a WordPress site, but I have my own domain name and soon, my entire website will be a WordPress site. I think that means it’s probably a wordpress.org site. I’ll find out for sure soon!