Although WordPress is a blogging platform, you can do much more than blogging. For example, you can disable blog/comment to make it looks like a static website (for advertising businesses). Or you can make it work like a discussion forum with multiple authors, contributors, moderators.
Below is a list of things that come with WordPress even with the free version.
- Free reliable web hosting – this alone is worth a lot. The ability to keep your website up and running all the time is not cheap nor easy. WordPress seems to implement a redundancy mechanism where they have multiple physical machines hosting your website. The best part? it’s free.
- Regular content backup – I cannot verify this but it seems that WordPress.com automatically backup the content of your site from time to time. If you were to host the website yourself, you will need to manage this yourself.
- Ability to map with custom domain – you can buy custom domain straight from WordPress and maintain it for $18/year (~ $10 for the domain, $8 for the mapping). If you already have a custom domain, you can map it to your WordPress blog for $13/year.
- Free 3 Gb storage – You can use this for pictures, documents, videos. GoDaddy offers 1 Gb for $72/year. Not sure how much Blogger gives you.
- Lots of free themes – Blogger has much fewer themes, most of them look the same. WordPress on the other hand offers a variety of look and feel ranging from art, business to personal, photography. There’s also option to pay for more fancier theme. But I found free themes are good enough. My theme is Sorbet.
- Free mobile support– There is a built-in default mobile format, which you can enable/disable in settings. Note that this is different from the theme-specific ‘mobile-ready’ format. The default mobile view is the same for all theme. It basically consists of a blue drop-down menu for your pages and a search bar. Look simple enough on your phone.
- Free mobile-ready themes – Some themes have their own mobile view version. Those are newer better themes. My Sorbet theme, for example, has its own mobile format, which looks much better than the default mobile view. So try to pick a theme that is mobile-ready.
- Free statistics report – Blogger also has this feature. GoDaddy doesnt. Stats are more useful when you have lots of traffic and want to optimize your traffic flow.
- Free document hosting with password protected – This is the sweet and butter of WordPress. Blogger and GoDaddy does not have this. If you want a website that publishes documents or content that have some sort of minimal privacy, use this. You can have one password per page.
- Free blogging capability – You cannot do this with GoDaddy web builder/hosting
- Comment, sharing, like, rating control – You can turn on/off comment, sharing, like on a page or a post if you like. This is useful if you dont want certain page static. Sharing is also another big feature to let people share your stuffs on their facebook, twitter, g+, tumbler, etc.
- Auto-post on media – This is a great feature where you want to automatically advertise your new post on all of your media platforms. There’s an option to connect to your Facebook, Google+, Linked in, Twitter such that your new post would be posted on them as well.
- Customized pages – You can have a static page, or a page that’s actually linked to your posts grouped by category, tag, or format, or even a link to a random page. The flexibility is yours.
- Gallery view – another sweet and butter feature, you can group your pictures in gallery format where people can go through them easily (good for photographer blog)
- Customizable widgets: they are little add-on sections ranging from archive, category, followed blogs to ‘followed button’, facebook feeds etc.
- Advanced features:
- You can have unlimited blogs per account
- You can have multiple authors per blog – multiple people can post at the same time and you can group the posts by author
- You can have multiple roles in your blog: authors, contributors, moderators, administrators. Essentially turning your blog to a discussion forum (probably need to upgrade to support the traffic)
- Video and music blog – you’ll need to upgrade for $99/year
There are many more features as WordPress will keep adding them. But the above should give you a good idea how much it can offer.