No IT expert will contest the fact that WordPress in either its .com or .org formats has much to offer, especially for those who are still new to the world of web building and blogging. But what is less known is that, for every perk WordPress holds out, there is a drawback that also deserves consideration.
For serious entrepreneurs, business owners and e-commerce operations in particular, WordPress may simply not be the best choice. In this post, learn the top five key benefits you will realize when you choose to transfer WordPress website to a new hosting provider.
Benefit #1: You will have more control over your site and data security.
Because both WordPress.com and WordPress.org are built on an open-source PHP-based code that is undergoing constant revision via a global network of contributing developers, every tool or plug-in you select for your WordPress site may have been written by a different developer, with no one central oversight function to check for security vulnerabilities or bugs.
As well, since data is stored in a MYSQL database which has known SQL security vulnerabilities, you will need to either install a plug-in to counteract these vulnerabilities and/or continually monitor your site for suspicious activity. Finally, because more than half of all web users are working from a WordPress-based template, WordPress itself continues to be a major target for hackers and malware.
When to transfer: When you are ready to accept payments online or you are storing any sensitive data on your site, a transfer is the best way to ensure that data stays safe.
Benefit #2: You will face fewer obstacles to optimizing your site for SEO purposes.
WordPress is optimized for WordPress, period. It is not optimized in context with the greater web-based community, for the frequent sweeping Google algorithm changes, for the ever-evolving web browser options or for search engine optimization (SEO).
To this point, WordPress does offer some in-house helps to make optimizing SEO-based content easier, but they won’t extend themselves to point this out, so you either have to have a certain level of IT knowledge yourself or hire someone who does to know where to look to find and make use of these tools.
When to transfer: You may just find you are spending more time and money hiring extra help to ensure your SEO bears the proper results than makes good business sense. When this is the case, why not transfer your WordPress website to a host that will make optimizing for SEO easy?
Benefit #3: You will receive reliable and consistent technical support.
When it comes to receiving prompt, useful and up-to-date technical support, you are at the mercy of the greater user community. With so many developers around the world contributing to the WordPress open source architecture, there is no guarantee you will ever receive any direct assistance from the developer that actually wrote the bit of code you are having trouble with.
As well, many of the forums become outdated quickly and there is no way to verify the credentials of many of the individuals answering forums questions. So you face a very real risk of doing more harm than good by following advice you get through an open forums system.
Finally, the online text and video tutorials can become outdated very quickly – certainly more quickly than the many non-paid contributing developers have time to update them. This can get frustrating fast when you need to learn how to do something in a hurry.
When to transfer: When you are spending more time on the forums and tutorials pages looking for answers than you are actively running your business and monetizing your website, a transfer is definitely in order.
Benefit #4: You won’t face another upgrade prompt every time you turn around.
Because WordPress is based on shared developer contributions, updates are frequent….very frequent. This is less of an issue when you are using WordPress in the strictest, simplest sense as just a free hosted blog, but when you begin developing it out as a tool to meet your business and e-commerce goals, the potential compatibility issues increase. In particular, you may find that certain third-party plug-ins and apps simply don’t play well with the WordPress CMS.
Furthermore, if you ignore the upgrade prompts from within WordPress, you may soon run into functionality issues with the core WordPress content management system (CMS) itself. Either way, frequent updates will be part of your daily life for as long as you use WordPress.
When to transfer: When updates begin to interfere with how your entire site – foundational CMS plus plug-ins and third party apps – functions on a regular basis, it is time to transfer to a host with a fresher, seamless functionality.
Benefit #5: You will have monetization options galore.
If your site is currently located on WordPress.com, you have one and only one monetization option, which is WordPress’s own Ads program. And you have to hit a certain level of traffic in order to qualify, which most WordPress.com sites never achieve.
You have more flexibility if you are on WordPress.org, but you will find some inherent incompatibility issues if you want to use affiliate links from certain outside monetization sites (BlogHer is a good example).
When to transfer: If you are serious about making money by using your website and/or blog as a tool, you can do much better than WordPress for incoming earning options and revenue-generating potential.
By understanding when it makes sense to use WordPress and when a transfer is a better choice, you will be able time these important decisions so that you can continue to grow your business. Best of all, by then you will have enough working knowledge to choose a new host that can really give you your money’s worth in site functionality!