In Chapter 1, you took a big-picture look at WordPress and the sites it can build. Now you’re ready to partner with WordPress and start building your own web masterpiece.
But not so fast. Before you can create even a single WordPress-powered page, you need to decide where to put it, and, as you found out in Chapter 1, WordPress gives you two perfectly good choices:
The WordPress.com hosting service. This is a wonderfully free and supremely convenient service for web authors who want to build an ordinary blog and can live with a few limitations.
Self-hosting. This option requires you to set up WordPress on your own web host, which is a little bit more work (but still not much hassle). Self-hosted sites are more powerful and flexible than WordPress.com-hosted sites—they let you show ads, use plug-ins, and create completely customized pages that go far beyond ordinary blogs.
In this chapter, you’ll get started with the first choice: using WordPress.com. But if you’d prefer to give self-hosting a whirl, skip this chapter and jump straight to Chapter 3. No matter which route you take, the paths converge in Chapter 4, where you’ll begin adding content, refining your site, and developing the skills of a true WordPress wizard.
If you’re still divided between the convenience of WordPress.com and the flexibility of a self-hosted site, you can review the key differences on WordPress.com Sites vs. Self-Hosted Sites. Or you can leave both doors open: Start ...