Cost of WordPress: A Quick View At The Real Costs Of Running A Blog Or Web Site
When I just started to use WordPress, I was wondering what the real cost of WordPress was. As you might know, WordPress is open source software and free to use. But does free really means “free”? What are the other costs? Are there any hidden costs?
That’s why, after building several web sites for my clients, I’m writing this overview. So you’ll also get a better insight of the costs of running a WordPress blog or site.
Let’s start with the basics: the WordPress software. This really is free to download and to use. No hidden costs. Period.
Domain name and web hosting
Once you downloaded the WordPress software, you have to put it somewhere so your visitors can visit your blog or site. That’s what we call web hosting. You also need a domain name (www.mydomain.com). These costs are annual.
There are really a lot of different web hosting companies, offering different sorts of web hosting plans. If you’re running a normal blog, then a basic web hosting plan will do. Go for an established web hosting company. If you don’t know where to start, try HostGator. They offer fast, reliable WordPress hosting starting as low as $5,95 / month, including a domain name.
You can also try Bluehost. I used to run one of my blogs on Bluehost, and they also offer good quality for a low price. Prices start at $6,95 / month, but performance is a little bit lower.
Templates (design of your blog / site)
Next thing that really can cost you a lot of money is a template. A template is the design of your blog / site. There are several free templates of good quality out there. If you know some html / css / php, you can even change them the way you like.
You can also consider to buy a premium template. Premium templates mostly come with more options then free templates and professional support. Prices are relative cheap (less then $100). The downside is that they are used by several sites and blogs wolrdwide. But, to be honest, I use a premium theme for this blog, and there are so many options that it’s possible to create a more personal theme. For several reasons my personal favourit is WooThemes.
Another very interesting option in my opinion is Artisteer. With Artisteer, you can simply create your own template without needing any technical knowledge! This is also one of my favourites, I use it a lot to create professional web sites for my clients. And it isn’t expensive at all, the Home version (which is perfect for WordPress users) costs only $49!
The last option is to contact a designer for a custom design. This option is much more expensive. If you just start blogging, this option is not for you.
I’ll start with the good news: most plugins are for free or have a free (limited or basic) version. So if you just start blogging you can keep the cost of WordPress very low. However, for some plugins (like Askimet) you have to pay a fee if you run a professional website or blog. Other plugins are premium plugins and will cost you some money. But premium (or commercial) plugins come with better support and most of them also come with refund options.
Tip: when you find a plugin and you have to pay for it, you can also look for a free alternative. Sometimes the free alternative will meet your demands, sometimes it won’t.
Cost of WordPress: overview
- WordPress software: $0
- Domain name and web hosting: starting at $6,95 / month (Bluehost) or $5,95 / month (Hostgator Hatchling plan)
- Templates: a lot of free templates, commercial templates will cost less then $100 (like WooThemes), or you can use Artisteer (as low as $49 for the Home version).
- Plugins: most of the plugins are for free.
I hope that after reading this article, it’s a little more clear to you how much WordPress costs. As you can see, it all depends on you. It’s certainly possible to keep the cost of WordPress very low, but as you can see it isn’t that difficult to pay a lot too. If you think about other costs that come with WordPress, or other costs you had, please let me and the other visitors know and leave comment.
Did you like this article?
YOU can support us by liking us on Facebook! As a bonus, you'll get a copy of our Free WordPress Kickstart Guide, a 50+ pages PDF e-book with all the basics of WordPress in it explained.