Domain Names and WordPress – Woodie Knows WordPress

Woodie knows WordPress - Carrie Spencer Smart Ass RomanceAfter a busy day of digging holes and unplanting hydrangeas in the backyard, I usually like sit down to do a bit of blogging. Nosh on some daisies. Things like that.

Today, I’m going to enlighten you on domain names.

Almost everyone who’s ever BEEN on the internet knows what a domain name is. In case you don’t, let Woodie explain it to you. In easy terms.

cnn.com
msnbc.com
macys.com
nordstroms.com
carrotsrus.com

Those are highly recognizable domain names. Just like someday www.woodieknowswordpress.com will be one too. Boo-yah!

Getting your own domain name is easy. Go to www.godaddy.com or www.bluehost.com or your favorite hosting company and type in the domain name you’re looking for.

This domain is taken. Try again.

WHAT????

Well, it IS 2011 and domain names have been in use a long time. So you might have to be creative. Instead of dabomb.com try iamdabomb.com or dabombfromnewark.com. C’mon, think!

Once you’ve finally got your domain name, here is where you have a few more choices. One, to go with wordpress.org or two, go with wordpress.com. WP.org is going to cost you hosting fees (approximately $4-6 a month) but you can add in any plugin or widget you want, and pick or buy your own theme. WP.com is free, comes with 100 chosen themes that you can modify and has many pre-sets already installed.

While you’re deciding on that, lets talk more about your domain name and WP.com. Once you get your name, you’ll need to play around with the settings of your the domain-name-purchasing company of choice. You’ll generally find you can forward your domain name. So if I type in www.carriecspencer.com it ends up at www.smartassromance.com. I can also type in www.carriespencerbooks.com and end up in the same place. So, if you already have a WP.com account in place, you can FORWARD your domain name to any URL you’d like.

Handy eh?

Woodie knows WordPress - Domain NamesYou can also FORWARD and MASK. (Not that kind of mask…..sigh) Which means if I typed in carriespencerbooks.com the location bar wouldn’t show smartassromance.com like it does now, it would show carriespencerbooks.com.

Slick eh?

And it’s FREE.

You can also MAP an existing domain, directly from inside WP.com. This costs, at the time of this writing, $12.00 per domain name. This does basically the same as fowarding, but it’s all done through WP.com itself, rather than bringing in an outside vendor.

WP.org is a slightly different beast. Yes, you can import your blog posts from your old blog (we’ll discuss that in a later post) but you get WP with benefits. Add in plugins that do amazing things, widgets that let you put in sliding photo albums, different fonts in different colors etc. It’s a lot more freeing, but yes, a weeeee bit more complicated.

So the choice is p to you. Buy a domain name and keep your WP.com site? Or upgrade to maximum capacity and get WP.org, your own domain name and the ability to do with your blog what you will.

Any questions before I head back to the flower patch?

Woodie

7 Responses to “Domain Names and WordPress – Woodie Knows WordPress”

  • Jen:

    I got my domain name from Go Daddy…but I didn’t know about forward and masking.

    Thank you, Woodie!

  • I got my own domain through wordpress.com and love it. I find the themes a bit limiting in color/fun/widget functionality so I’ll likely buy a premium theme to get my color/fun fix and stick with easiness of it for the next year.

    In the meantime, I plan on learning more about hosting and wordpress.org and will likely make the switch next year sometime. I want the glorry of more freedom to make my blog’s design and functionality reflect me. However, I don’t want to rush the learning curve or bite off more than I can chew right now.

    I think wordpress.com is a great place to get started, see how like blogging, if it’s something you’re going to stick with. As you become more serious, moving to wordpress.org enables you to take your blog to the next level with a pretty seamless transition (or so I hope)!

    Thanks for the great post – fantastic way of breaking it down to the basics.

  • Woodie is awesome! I actually understood almost all of this. You lost me a little on the making and forwarding and mapping, but I don’t need to know that yet. When I do, I’ll know where to look.

    I love this feature and will be back again and again and again.

    Thanks!

  • Tameri, if you ever get to that point, let me know and Woodie’ll walk you through it! =)

  • This is exactly what I was looking for…and Woodie knew it! I’m on blogger and thinking of moving to wordpress. I’ve already got my domain and maintain a work-related website using Dreamweaver, but need to simplify. Thanks for the information. This is one of my goals before the end of the year.

  • […] I read Carrie Spencer’s post on domain names and WordPress, it became clear to me that to gain the freedom I want, I’ll […]

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