Hosted vs. Self-Hosted Websites

What's the Difference between Hosted and Self-hosted websites?In most cases, I recommend you choose “self-hosting” for your websites.  Self-hosting allows maximum flexibility and is the best choice for maximizing your SEO.

Hosted Websites are Free

The two most popular “hosted” websites are WordPress.com and Blogger.com.  These are free and “all-in-one.”  Hosting, design, setup and maintenance!

Travel to these respective sites, follow the directions and create your website!

There are several advantages to hosted websites:  convenience, security and cheap.

In either case, both provide hosting and are an “all-in-one” solution for creating a website. You don’t have to worry about security updates and your website will be hosted on safer and better servers than you can arrange yourself.  Security issues, malware and downtime are virtually non-existant…and not your problem.

Hosted websites, however, are severely inflexible and your ability to customize the theme (aka appearance) and functionality is limited.  Worst of all, this option provides limited ability for search engine optimization (SEO).

Self-Hosted Websites

These sites require you purchase hosting (nominal rates, keep reading), install WordPress and maintain the site yourself.  In return you get maximum flexibility, customization and complete autonomy.

There are many “self-hosted” companies offering to host your WordPress.org site;  GoDaddy.com and Bluehost.com are two of our favorites and two of the most popular.

For a low monthly fee, usually less than $10, you can obtain hosting for your site, install WordPress.org with one click and have complete access and control over your site.

There are countless free themes from which to choose compared to a more limited selection with the “hosted” sites.  In addition, WordPress.org is “open source” allowing the creation of infinite “plugins” to add almost any function imaginable to your site.  These, too, are free.

Security updates are provided regularly to prevent hacking (i.e. invasion from malware, spam) and while upgrading is a simple click, you must still remember to do so, whereas with hosted sites, this is provided for you.

Best Way to Maximize SEO

Your ability to optimize your site, however, is the biggest reason to move to WordPress on a self-hosted site.  Maximum flexibility includes use of plugins to specifically allow you to optimize your site;  analytics, webmasters tools, Scribe, etc.

Maximum flexibility also means you can start and grow your site at your own pace.  Millions of blogs and websites are “self-hosted,” that is, it isn’t too difficult.

Ownership

The last advantage to “self-hosted” is that you own your files.  There is no risk of your site suddenly disappearing due to a change in policy or rules.  With self-hosted plans, you have constant access to your servers and files.

 

The Difference Between a WordPress Post and Page

 Guide to Choosing WordPress Page versus WordPress Post

 

You are now ready to publish your first article on your website.  You have two choices with WordPress, post vs. page.  How do you choose?

Both pages and posts are used to create documents, or articles, for your website.  They are simply files you create when creating content.  Both are similar to creating a “Word” document on your word processor.

Technical Differences between WordPress Pages and Posts

There are several technical differences between the post and the page.  Some of these differences are; pages are not time-stamped, pages are not distributed via RSS, pages usually don’t offer the ability to add comments and posts are listed in reverse chronological order (the most recent first) on your site.

When to Create a Page

In general, pages are linked to the home page or the navigation bar.  They are highly visible and easy to find because pages contain good general information about your practice and the services your provide.  Pages tend to serve as great references on your website.

Examples of “pages;”

  • About Page
  • Contact Page
  • Insurance Participation Page
  • Disclaimers
  • Patient Information Forms
  • Services Provided

Create 3 Overviews and Publish as a Page

In addition, we recommend creating 3 “anchor articles” as pages.  Create 3 different articles about 600-800 words in length.  Each article should be an “overview” about a particular topic/disease/service that your practice is proud to provide.

Pages are usually automatically added to the WordPress navigation bar once published.

Use pages to quickly convey to your readers the main themes/services of your practice.  Refrain from trying to write a lengthy article about each and every procedure or service in which you “specialize.”  This will be distracting to the reader and they will leave.

(Don’t worry.  As your site grows with additional content, you’ll naturally be broadening the scope of the content of your website, and thus, all of your services and specialties will become evident!)

When to Create a Post

Posts should be shorter than pages.  Somewhere between 300-500 words.  No more.  Posts are the core of a website.  By publishing regularly, your readers are kept up to date via your posts, your website gets refreshed and your SEO values improve.

Posts should be shorter than pages, contain one idea or topic and should compliment the overviews.  Posts are the core of your SEO of your site!

After creating your 3 main articles, we suggest publishing regular posts…at a rate of once a week in the beginning.  This is the core of content marketing.  Following the “3 R’s” of content marketing, should get your pages ranked in no time!

Posts should be focused on one topic.  In the beginning, make the subject of your posts related to one of the anchor articles.  These posts should be a bit more detailed than the larger overview article.  Thus, your information in your posts will compliment the larger overview pages.  Here are some other suggestions for writing great content.

Creating links from the post to the page, and vice versa, is also a great way to improve your SEO.  By creating “internal links” within your site, the search engines will be sure to index each and every article of your site.

Make sure to allow comments on your posts.  While you may “turn off” comments on pages, make sure comments are “on” for your posts.

The most powerful part of your website is to allow user generated content, i.e. allowing your readers to leave a comment…followed by a response!

To the Growth of You and Your Practice!

Randall V. Wong, M.D.
www.MedicalMarketingEnterprises.com

 

 

How To Write and Publish Your First Post on WordPress

Writing your first post in WordPress is pretty easy. This post will walk you through the steps and screens that you need to start your very first post!!

The Dashboard

1.  After logging in to the administration panel of your web site.  You should see the following screen, if not, click on the Dashboard link as highlighted.

Wordpress Dashboard, Publishing First WordPress Post, Medical SEO, Medical Marketing Enterprises

Adding a New Post to WordPress.org

Locate and click on “Posts.”

It is also located in the left column of your screen.   When comfortable….click on “Posts” and the link should expand.

Publishing Your First Post on WordPress, Medical Marketing Enterprises, Medical SEO

Click on “Add New” which should now be located just below “Posts.”

 

Add New Post on WordPress, Medical Marketing Enterprises, Medical SEO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writing, Saving and Publish on WordPress

Your page should now look like the screenshot below. Click on the appropriate areas to add your title and content of your article. It is as simple as using any word processor. If you want to save your work without publishing it, click “Save Draft.” “Publish” will put your new post on the Internet!

Remember, you can always edit or remove posts and pages on WordPress at a later time!!

Add New Post to WordPress, Medical Marketing Enterprises