If you want to create a website, whether you know how to code or not, WordPress can be a helpful tool. It's a free software that you can use to design responsive web pages for a business, portfolio, or blog. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know about the different versions of WordPress.

Who Is WordPress For?

WordPress is for anyone who wants to make a website or blog. People who are doing this as a hobby rather than a professional endeavor often create a free subdomain, while those who are making a portfolio or online store will usually have a custom domain name. Some users host their webpages directly through WordPress, but those who choose to go with a different hosting platform can still use the WordPress software as a tool for designing their site. The company offers different plans to help accommodate everyone from bloggers to freelancers to small businesses.

WordPress.org vs WordPress.com

WordPress.org WordPress.com
Easy to use
Supports themes and widgets
Good choice for bloggers
Offers a lot of customization
Free version supports plugins

10 Amazing WordPress Plugins

More Information

WordPress, simply put, is both a blogging platform and an open-source content management system that people can use to create their own website. It was launched in 2003 by web developers Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little, and a hosted version of the software was released in 2005. There are two very different versions of WordPress, and each has their own pros and cons.

First, we have "WordPress.org," which is the self-hosted version of the software. It started out as a successor to "B2/Cafelog," a blogging platform created in 2001 by a programmer named Michel Valdrighi. B2 ceased development in 2003, and its software was used as a base to create WordPress in that same year. Over the years, it grew to become one of the most popular content management systems on the internet, mostly due to its customizability and ease of use.

Primarily built as a blogging platform, it provides users with a simple way to publish posts that readers can comment on. After installing WordPress, users are immediately greeted with a dashboard that shows all of its management features. Each page here has a useful "Help" button that, when clicked on, will show a brief explanation of what the selected feature does, and how to use it.

One of its main features is the ability to choose from thousands of themes. Whether you want your site to be a personal blog, an online store, or a professional portfolio, there are a lot of both free and paid options you can use to achieve your goals. Each of these is highly customizable, and more advanced users with knowledge of coding languages such as CSS and PHP can further personalize their sites.

Third party developers and communities also create plugins specifically for WordPress that users can install on their websites. These can range from simple social media buttons to complete bulletin board or forum software that also allows visitors to create their own profiles. There are also a lot of plugins designed to help users with SEO, which is basically where one attempts to make their content more visible on search engines such as Google.

One major downside to WordPress is that it can potentially cost a lot of money to actually run a website using it, depending on a lot of factors. While the software itself is free to download and use, you'll still need to pay for a hosting service and domain name, which usually charge you monthly and annually, respectively.

Some themes and plugins also require users to pay a hefty sum for their "premium" versions to unlock all of their features. These premium features usually include developer support, which comes in very handy in case something goes wrong with their code.

For more casual users who want to set up their first blog or website, we have "WordPress.com." Released in 2005, this version is completely free to use and easy to set up. It's very similar to the self-hosted version of the software, but the main difference is that it has limited customization options and offers a relatively small amount of storage space.

You also aren't allowed to install any plugins unless you pay for their "Business" plan, which is the most expensive membership option that's aimed towards small businesses that intend to monetize their content. Aside from that, free users will have their websites be under a subdomain, which means that your site's URL will be something like "YourSiteName.WordPress.com".

Despite its disadvantages, it's still a good option for people, especially bloggers, who are just starting out and aren't expecting a lot of traffic on their site. It's very easy to use, and users can choose from hundreds of free themes that allow slight customization. You can also further personalize your site using WordPress' built-in widgets, such as live social media feeds and embedded videos.

Millions of websites are powered by WordPress, and the ".com" version of the software is one of the most popular blogging platforms on the internet. Its usage and popularity have been increasing at a steady rate since its release. Due to its open-source nature and regular updates, it's safe to say that it will continue to grow for years to come.

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