Selecting A New Website Vendor

Wow…what a whirlwind of information.  I’ve just gone through the process of picking new website template and hosting companies.  So, what I thought would be a week-long process took quite a bit longer.  I had been using Network Solutions for my consulting website and I liked their product, but I thought I could get a better deal by looking around.  With Network Solutions, I used a website template which was very easy to use, and they provided the hosting so the set-up was very quick and painless.  When I asked other business people which vendor they used for their websites, a number of people had mentioned WordPress.

Now I had only thought of WordPress for blogs.  What I didn’t realize was that they actually have 2 sides to their business.  One side (www.wordpress.com ) provides free blogs and blog templates, and the other side (www.wordpress.org ) provides free website templates, blog templates and a content management system.  You do have to find your own hosting vendor, but they partner with a number of good, affordable vendors and the process is well integrated into their website deployment process.

The more people I talked to about WordPress, the more fanatics I saw.  It was really something.  Everytime I talked to someone who uses WordPress it was like I was talking to the person who created it….that’s how much loyalty they had.  So, I jumped in and gave it a shot.  It was a whole new world of terminology, capabilities, etc and I very quickly was over my head.  But, the fanatics talked me into staying and here I am — a person who has created a website and blog on WordPress and has lived to tell about it.

Now that I’ve gone through the process, I’m glad to be on the other side, but I feel like there’s still a mountain to climb if I want to learn about more advanced capabilities (more plug-ins, widgets….see, I’m getting the lingo down pretty well!).  What makes me feel OK about all this is that there is a huge user community out there that’s willing to help.  I got a lot of help from a Meet Up group on WordPress (thanks Sallie, Noel, and Anca) and someone tipped me off that I could google most any question (the more specific the better) and see how other people have handled the same issue.

So there, I’m not alone in this WordPress journey and I can now focus on the content of my blog….creating a forum for fellow marketers to discuss new trends, emerging technology and great case studies. More to follow on these topics in my next entry.

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