WordPress.org is open source software you can use to create a beautiful website, blog, or app.
The community site where WordPress code is created and shared by the users. This is where you can download the source code for WordPress core, plugins and themes as well as the central location for community conversations and organization.WordPress Jargon Glossary
The WordPress.org software is an Open Source project, which means there are hundreds of people all over the world working on it. (More than most commercial platforms.) It also means you are free to use it for anything from your recipe site to a Fortune 500 web site without paying anyone a license fee. The WordPress software is released under the GPLv2 (or later) from the Free Software Foundation.
The WordPress Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded to further the mission of the WordPress open source project. The WordPress Foundation owns and oversees the trademarks for the WordPress and WordCamp names and logos.
You’ll need to register your own domain name. This is the address that you enter into your browser to find your site (e.g. myawesomesite.com). Domain registration is typically renewed each year using a service such as Namecheap. Domain registration typically costs anywhere from a couple of dollars per year to $30 or $40 p/yr, depending on the domain you wish to register.
To use the WordPress.org software you’ll need to purchase website hosting. This is where you store all your website files and content. Like domain name registration, website hosting is typically renewed on a yearly basis although some companies also offer monthly, quarterly or 6 monthly payments. Website hosting can cost as little as $5 per month through to hundreds per month. The type of hosting will depend on the type of website you have. An eCommerce site for example, would require better (& typically more expensive) hosting than what a small brochure site would require.
WordPress is well known for it’s ease of installation. Most web hosts have automated systems in place to help you get WordPress installed and setup. For those that like a more hands-on approach there’s easy to follow instructions for their famous 5-Minute Installation.
The WordPress.org Plugin Directory has over 54,000 plugins that are free to download and install on your WordPress site. On top of that, there are also hundreds of paid/premium plugins available from a wide range of Theme & Plugin shops. Using the WordPress.org software, you’re free to install whatever plugin you wish on your site.
The WordPress.org Theme Directory has approximately 3,000 themes that are free to download and install on your WordPress site. On top of that, like Plugins, there are hundreds of paid/premium themes available from a wide range of Theme shops. Using the WordPress.org software, you’re free to install whatever theme you wish on your site. If you’re running a business, you may even decide to get a developer to build a completely custom theme, just for your business.
When using WordPress.org software, you’re responsible for your sites security & maintenance. It might sound difficult, but there’s lots of trusted and well-known free plugins that strengthen the security of your site. The first step you should take is to ensure your password is secure and strong. Never use birth dates, family or pet names, common words or short passwords.
Your WordPress site will attempt to automatically update itself whenever a minor version is released (e.g. v4.8.1, v4.9.3, v4.9.4). For major version releases (e.g. v4.9, v5.0), you’ll need to update your site manually. Thankfully though, WordPress has made this extremely easy and it’s just a simple matter of clicking the Update Now button in your Dashboard. Your WordPress Dashboard will also advise when your themes or plugins have updates available. Like WordPress itself, keeping your themes and plugins updated is incredibly easy as well.
Most website hosts will perform regular backups, but it’s always a wise move to perform your own as well. There are numerous free and paid plugins that allow you to backup your site. There are also paid services such as VaultPress (which is the same service that WordPress.com utilises).
Running your own copy of WordPress on your own hosting environment gives you 100% complete control over your website. You’re free to install whatever plugin or theme you wish, along with adding whatever content you wish. Once you’ve paid for your Hosting and Domain Registration, there are no other fees, unless of course you choose to also purchase a premium/paid plugin or theme. Most hosting services provide generous amounts of disk space and bandwidth to allow your site to grow.
You have complete control over the monetisation of your site. The WordPress.org software wont display any ads on your site, unless you specifically choose to put them there. It’s completely up to you whether you want to display adverts, use affiliate links or which ad network you’d like to use.
Most hosting plans also include access to free email accounts. If your site is myawesomesite.com for example, you can quickly and easily create an email like firstname.lastname@example.org. The amount of emails you can store will depend on the amount of disk space that comes with your hosting plan.
You own your content and you’re free to do with it, whatever you want (as long as it’s not against the law, of course).