In this blog post, I will explain the difference between a Self-hosted website and a fully hosted website builder platform. It is important to understand the difference, so you can make the right choice for your business.
If you would like to know more about Hosting, Domain and Website builder platform you can start by reading my previous blog posts here.
Self-hosted Website Builder platform
If you choose a self-hosted platform You Are Responsible For All The Different Elements Of Your Website. you would need to host your website and purchase your own domain.
Pros of Self-Hosted Website Builder Platform
- You can add as many features as you want, like an online store, blog, mailing list, ads, and so much more.
- You can get help from a coder to set up a unique code if necessary.
- You have full control of your domain.
- You can move your website to any website builder you want.
Cons Of Self-Hosted Website Builder Platform
- The initial set up can be a bit complicated for new users.
WordPress.org is the most popular self-hosted platform used to build a website or a blog.
Fully hosted Website Builder platform
If you choose a fully hosted website builder platform you don’t need to pay for hosting or the domain. However, the package is limited and any feature you would like to add in the future will cost you money. Often, you will also need to pay a regular fee to keep your website hosted there.
Pros of Fully hosted Website Builder platform
- Easy first set up.
- Easy drag and drop page builders.
- Free website for the short term.
Cons Of Fully Hosted Website Builder Platform
- More expensive for the long term – any additional features will be expensive.
- It is almost impossible to move your website to a different platform.
- Poor SEO ranking.
Should you self-host your first website?
Here is a quick guide to help you make the right decision for your first website
- Would you need a unique domain for your business?
- Would you need a unique design based on your company’s colours and images? Or you can compromise on a generic design by simply adding your company logo
- In order to choose the right platform for your first website, list all the items you would like to have on your website. Start with the example list below.
Start With The Example List Below.
- Contact form
- About us/ About the company
- Information about Services
- Photo gallery
- Contest/giveaway page
- Social media links
- Share/like/pin buttons.
- Online store
- Payment processor
- Ads and Affiliates Banners
- Now, think about your growth opportunities: What items will you add or possibly add in the future?
If you answered “Yes” on the first two questions and you checked more than 4 items on my list then the best option for you is a Self-hosted Website Builder platform
Here are 3 more examples to help you make the right decision
#Senrio 1: If you have a small business, providing services offline and your future clients will get to your website from a direct link you provided- you can use a fully hosted platform.
For example, Lili operates a home daycare. She can take only 5 kids at one time and most of her clients know about her from other families in her neighbourhood. On her website, she would like to provide general information about her home daycare and 1 contact page.
#Senrio 2: If you have a business that operates mostly online such as Digital Courses, Blog, Online Store, influencer and more. You should choose a self-hosted platform like WordPress. It will provide you more flexibility with your online business and will save you money in the long term.
#Senrio 3: If you would like to get traffic from Google Search based on the main Keywords you should choose WordPress.org or wordpress.com
For example, David provides plumbing services in Toronto. If someone searches for “Plumber in Toronto” David would like to appear in the organic search results. David should choose a WordPress platform to build his website.
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