WordPress.com allows you to start a website for free without worrying about hosting related issues, but it comes with lot many restrictions .
Some of the restrictions are as follows,
- You are not allowed to install plugins of your choice
- eCommerce websites can’t be done over there
- You can not run Google Adsense ads for revenue
- You are not allowed to upload theme of your choice
These things made self hosted WordPress so popular that WordPress 4.7, the latest version of WordPress has been downloaded for more than 30 Million times. Self hosted WordPress is great as it gives freedom but like people say, freedom comes with responsibilities. You are responsible for lot many things including Web Hosting, Incompatibility issues within Plugins and Themes, Security, Data Backup and more. Imaging a photographer who created a nice looking website with the help of beautiful WordPress photography themes and plugins. He is a good photographer because he loves his job but to showcase the job, he created a website with WordPress. Now he needs to spend time on maintaining the website, checking with host if any update comes or if the server is not able to handle the requests etc. etc. He must be frustrated as he likes to upload his new work and likes to spend time on street clicking new photos, but is stuck with the website maintenance. Now the only options left to him is to hire someone to help with the maintenance of the website.
StudioPress, a very popular name in WordPress community and ecosystem as one of best WordPress theme creators, makers of Genesis theme and it’s child themes. Now StudioPress team has come up with StudioPress Sites which solves the above problems and allows you to build a premium website without worrying about the site maintenance and hosting issues.
StudioPress Sites is an All-In-One solution which can be treated as premium version of WordPress.com where you get everything that was missing on WordPress.com and all the benefits of WordPress.org.
Site Builder with In-built Hosting
Rainmaker Digital, the company behind StudioPress and many other amazing products, was running this Premium Theme Club since many years. Same company is behind the Rainmaker Platform which allows you to build pages or even sites and add modules related to digital marketing without writing any piece of code. The drag and drop modules and elements help you build a nice, responsive websites.
In StudioPress Sites, they have kind a clubbed everything together along with a fast and reliable hosting solution. So now you can choose any design from available StudioPress Themes and build a website. Just make it live.
WordPress SaaS Model
StudioPress Sites is a great example of WordPress Software as a Service. Once you login, you get a WordPress dashboard with all the options including special options as per StudioPress Sites. Now you are going to pay $24 – $33 per month to use that service. Well, you are getting many premium features including the best theme designs, reliable hosting, SEO solutions, recommended third-party plugin installation from the dashboard etc.
StudioPress team is having a recommendation board to help you pick a plugin for your requirement. It lists some hand picked plugins for different purposes so you don’t need to download and test multiple plugins for a task. Here are few recommendations,
- Forms by WP Forms Lite
- Email Leads by OptinMonster
- Slider by Soliloquy
- WooCommerce to sell physical products
- Easy Digital Downloads for Digital Products
- Restrict Content Pro for Membership Website
- and many more…
As a business model, this WordPress SaaS is looking great for both, the company and the users. Here is the pricing structure.
Premium Solution for Bloggers/Professionals/Institutes
Those who like to focus on their work rather than development and site maintenance, this is a great option. It allows you to forget about the pain of self hosted WordPress and just come and write your content to showcase through your website. Learn how to grow your website audience and keep doing that only.
eCommerce with Less Worries
The Commerce plan is priced at $33/mo where you can install eCommerce plugins like WooCommerce, Easy Digital Download etc. Here you can have a Payment gateway to receive payments. eCommerce websites consumes more resources and needs more security and that’s why you are paying bit more than the normal plan.
With the Commerce plan, you can also create a forum website on StudioPress Sites.
You can’t register a domain on StudioPress Sites which means you need to use domain registrar like GoDaddy and others to make it done. I am still reviewing StudioPress Sites features and will come up with a detailed report very soon. Stay tuned.
There are many people using Genesis and other child themes, so the company will keep releasing new updates and keep providing support to Genesis and other themes, no doubt about it. I love Genesis theme and have use it on many websites along with Beaver Builder. The results are amazing and it is really flexible. Hopefully the new site builder of StudioPress will have similar flexibility in terms of customization and freedom of implementation.