I am fairly new to blogging and am trying to figure out the best set up for my blog/ecommerce business. I currently have an ecommerce website hosted by a small company that also did the design/code work. I also have a wordpress blog linked to this page. After about six months of working on both, I would like to make my blog more the forefront of my business rather than the products. I am searching for the best way to revamp my site. I plan to switch web hosts this summer as well. I have done quite a bit of research on the best way to set up blog, but there are so many hosts I am one, not sure of the best one and two, should I stay with wordpress for my blog? I have been looking at Ning as well, what are your thoughts on this website as far as a blog/ecommerce site?
Beth, WordPress is a very popular blogging platform. There are plugins for it to incorporate eCommerce. I am not a specialist in that area, so I can't point you towards one.One thing that worries me is sometimes these smaller companies use their own stuff, versus like ZenCart, if they did, you may need to scrap it and start new. I would keep WordPress for your blog.
You will also need to find a developer if you aren't familar with PHP. Swapping your shop front to a blog will require more than a few clicks. Could you ask the company to make the swap for you then jump ship?
I would say No to Ning for you unless you want a social network, think MySpace. I am not sure if Ning has an eCommerce part to it. There were some content ownership issues about Ning I believe a year ago.
Thanks for the note, I appreciate it.
I will get with my developer, who also happens to be my current host, and see if we can work on the switch before I move to a different host.
What do you think of the host liquidweb? I follow a couple blogs that are hosted by the company.
Also, the draw to Ning was the social community back end that my company may need one day. I am assuming I can build a community for my blog using wordpress when the time comes?
I never heard of them honestly. We have a hosting forum here at SitePoint. I suggest you do search for liquidweb there. If there isn't a recent thread about theme make a new one.
A community is a bit different than a blog. You might be able to make a community with WP but I am not 100%. I would be careful about mixing community, blogging and business/store, if it is only you running the show.
As this is more of a question about the best ideas for your business, rather than content for your web site, I will move it to the business and legal forum.
My suggestion is that you move to a platform that is extensible. I'm a Joomla developer, so of course that is my preference, but there is good reason for that. With Joomla, you can have your blog, you can have your ecommerce, and if you want an online, there's an excellent component for that that can be added later and it integrates with everything else on your Joomla site.
WordPress is the fabulous for blogging and more. If you want primarily a blog plus some other things, that's perfect. If you want a website that also has a blog, I would suggest Joomla.
There's a WordPress integration available for Joomla if you want to keep WordPress.
Ning is a hosted solution, so you don't have as much control over it as you do your own site on your own webserver.
Joomla and its third-party components are all open-source so you can have your programmer modify it to suit your needs if necessary.
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