WordPress.com website builder | TechRadar

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WordPress is often considered the easiest and best website builder if you’re looking to create something that you won’t go overboard in the long run. You can even build a website on WordPress for free. Most web hosting accounts include a “one-click installer” that will set up WordPress for you in seconds. All you have to do is sit down and watch.

Learning to use WordPress is more difficult. It’s an extremely powerful and configurable product, with a huge ecosystem of add-ons and extensions, so there is a lot to learn. And while a host might have a few WordPress related articles on their support site, don’t expect significant help. Encounter real difficulties and you will be alone.

WordPress.com makes your life easier by handling all the technical details for you. There’s no hosting to buy, no setup to worry about, no updates to manage, no security concerns – signing up to WordPress.com you get a WordPress setup ready to go. job that you can use immediately.

A lifetime free plan makes it easier to test the service. Your site will contain WordPress.com ads, only 3 GB of storage space, and access only to basic themes and design options. It also limits you to a WordPress subdomain (yourname.wordpress.blog) and comes with basic community support. Still, it’s a decent system that is great for personal blogging, simple family sites, or just boosting your WordPress skills.

Price

WordPress comes with a free and limited option and a number of paid plans (Image credit: WordPress.com)

Packages and prices

If you are looking for something with a few extra features, you can upgrade to one of the paid hosting plans. The WordPress website builder has four main options. However, you can buy tons of add-ons to add more tools and flexibility.

The Personal plan costs $ 4 per month when you purchase the annual subscription. It includes up to 6 GB of storage space, your own custom domain, no more WordPress ads, and an SSL certificate. It also includes your own email address, you can accept payments and provide subscriber content. This plan works great for anyone who wants to create a more personalized, professional, and manageable site.

The Premium package is $ 8 per month when you commit annually. It comes with 13 GB of storage space, access to unlimited premium website themes, and advanced design tools. If you really want to take your website to the next level and have access to social media support tools, then this plan is a great place to start.

The Business plan costs $ 25 per month after you sign up for the annual subscription. This plan includes significantly more storage space (up to 200 GB) and includes 24/7 priority level support. For small businesses that want more SEO help, this plan has more tools. At this level, you can add themes, plugins and a backup function to save previous versions of your website.

The E-commerce package is designed for small or large online stores. It costs $ 45 per month when you sign up for the annual plan. The biggest difference between this plan and the Business plan is in the e-commerce functionality. Your website will be able to accept payments from over 60 different countries. Not too bad for an online store.

To start

Take the guided tour to prepare your blog for the big time (Image credit: WordPress.com)

To start

Creating a new site is pretty straightforward. The main part of the page focuses on filling out a few details before you can get started properly. Each time you complete a section, you automatically move on to the next.

If you’ve used a PC before, you’ll complete the checklist setup steps in minutes. If you don’t know where to go, you’ll also find a helpful pop-up tutorial that you’re free to take.

Editor

When you follow the checklist and “update your homepage” you will find yourself in front of the WordPress editor.

You feel more like you’re working with a word processor than with a web-based website editor. Just highlight the sample text and start typing to replace it (no need to click an edit button for example).

There is multimedia support for images, documents, audio and video files. Images can be added from your computer, your Google account, via a URL, or by searching the excellent Pexels library of free images. Audio and video files can be linked from elsewhere, or hosted locally if you purchase a commercial WordPress account.

The options available to you are very simple.

Galleries

Add images to your site, either your own or via Pexel’s excellent free images (Image credit: WordPress.com)

Pick a gallery, for example, and once you’ve added your images you can select the number of columns you need, or even choose to automatically crop photos with the click of a button.

Adding a single image gives you a few basic options, such as cropping, applying rounded edges, or even applying a two-color filter, if you like that sort of thing.

The core WordPress.com editor doesn’t have a lot of components to integrate directly with many other web services, but a simple content integration is usually very easy. Simply paste a URL from YouTube, Vimeo, Flickr, Twitter, and more, directly onto the page, and the publisher will usually display the linked content.

Blogging

One of the strengths of WordPress is certainly its blogging tool (Image credit: WordPress.com)

When writing a blog post, the interface is clean and uncluttered. The usual keyboard shortcuts, such as bolding or italicizing a word, work. You can forget about all the complexities if you want to and just focus on what you want to convey.

Widgets

WordPress has some great widgets that you can add to your site (Image credit: WordPress.com)

If you want to add widgets to your site – small components that you can usually add to sidebars, headers, footers, and other areas that work with widgets in your chosen theme – you can access them through the Appearance> menu. Customize on your left sidebar. These can’t compete with the best of website builder competition, but among the dozens of widgets available, some useful integrations include simple audio and video integration, Twitter timelines, Facebook pages, iCal compatible calendars, Flickr and Instagram feeds.

If any of these doesn’t work the way you want, experts can instantly switch to an HTML view of the current page and edit the code as needed (via the “code editor”). This gives you a lot more control than the usual “custom HTML” widgets you’ll get with some website builders, although it will take some knowledge and experience to get good results without spoiling the rest of the page. This is something that we only advise advanced users to explore.

Themes

WordPress comes with a huge range of themes that you can use to give your entire site a whole new look. Some are free, but most – the best of course – aren’t (but are included in the more expensive plans). (Image credit: WordPress.com)

Advanced features

Standalone WordPress gives you free access to a huge library of themes, but only 112 are accessible on the free plan.

If you’re in the mood for one of the premium themes, you can usually get one for around $ 39 to $ 150. Upgrading to Premium or higher plans will give you free access to everything.

It’s pretty much the same story with WordPress plugins. Install standard WordPress on a standard hosting package and you will be able to extend your setup with thousands of amazing add-ons, covering everything from convenient operational settings (redirecting every ‘404 not found’ error to your homepage) to major ones. packages in their own right (WordPress based WooCommerce is one of the best ecommerce platforms out there). But while you can see all the plugins available in the library, even trying the free plan at WordPress.com, the service will not allow you to install any unless you purchase the premium Business plan.

While these can be major issues for some, there are still restrictions with free accounts, and WordPress.com still has some cool advanced features.

A long list of import tools allow you to import posts, pages, comments, and other content from Wix, WordPress, Medium, Blogger, Tumblr, and other sites.

Blogging support is trampling all other website builder blogs in the dust. Let’s take just one example: blog comments which have a lot of valuable features. You can control whether commenters must provide a name and email address; decide when and if you receive an email about new comments; intelligently allow comments from trusted posters and block them when they seem suspicious; display comments according to your own rules (nesting levels, number of comments to display per page); and moderate questionable comments yourself before they are posted.

Jetpack’s capable analytics tell you all about your website’s performance. You can view the number of visitors, pageviews, likes and comments, as well as statistics on referrers, countries, search terms and more, while an Insights box covers your publishing activity, historical views, subscriber totals and an assortment of other interesting numbers. .

Final verdict

WordPress has a great, trustworthy website builder with a free plan that‘s great for simple websites. You can easily install WordPress on a regular hosting account and access more features for a lower price. With so many plugins and add-on options, you will be able to really customize your website to better reach your audience. You can always upgrade to a larger plan if you find that your site is growing and needs additional SEO tools.

You can also check out our other web hosting buying guides:


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