Maybe you will ask me that question why should I install WordPress locally when I can install it straight away. Or what do I mean installing it locally. WordPress, is still the best CMS available for all of those who wanted to build a website or a blog. This is one of the many platforms you will notice available on most web hosting companies. It’s like a package deal like WordPress and HostGator. Speaking of which, you can check how will I review my current web hosting HostGator in one year.
So going back about that topic why is there a need for web builders to install WordPress locally first. Most of my blogs are powered by WordPress. My main reason is that it’s just easy to use in publishing my articles. Moreover, it doesn’t have to take so much of my time to set it up. I can even select and install easily the best WordPress theme of my choice like Theme Junkie. So, why should I need to install WordPress locally?
Let me ask you a question. How will you feel if you bump into someone wearing the same dress as yours? Awkward isn’t it? You will laugh but then you will realize and wished that you should have wore something different. Or look differently even you have the same dress. This is only one of those analogy that I can relate to but in reality I can give you a handful reasons.
Advantages if you install WordPress locally first
- Better planning strategy – If you are serious with your plan to put up a blog or website but your mind is still cluttered. Too much information lying around your head and you can’t decide which one should go first. Then I suggest, like writing a perfect essay, create a draft design. So by installing WordPress locally on your computer, you and your team can decide what do you want to put there.
- Better Design Visualization – Of course! You wanted to have a better design especially if you don’t want your WordPress theme to look like a total clone. Though it’s true that there are so many free and paid premium WordPress themes out there you can buy or download. But you have to consider the big possibility that you’re not the only one who have downloaded it. Unless you have some more extra money or budget to hire an expert to do the design for you. Nevertheless, if you install WordPress locally and download a theme to install then you can have a better look of what will your future blog or website will look like. I personally use Theme Junkie because I find their WordPress theme designs responsive and I can easily add more CSS and customize. You don’t want your readers or visitors to find a messy website or blog, right? Or you don’t want them to be surprised that the design keeps on changing while they are reading your website just because you are directly updating something. It’ll be a bad experience for your readers.
- Speed and Responsiveness test – Now talking about bad and good experience. Nowadays, you must consider that two more things – speed and responsiveness. Let’s talk about speed first. So you have formulated and designed a great and wonderful theme but when you loaded it for a test – it is sluggish! The WordPress theme loading is way too slow than you have expected it. For a minute there you will debate with me that having a local WordPress copy doesn’t really say anything. You might say, I have an old laptop or computer with lower memory and CPU specs as compared to my web hosting. Exactly my point! If your theme is loads slowly on your computer then there’s a higher chance that it will even load slower when it is already on the live site. Are you also forgetting one more factor? Internet connection. If your WordPress theme is not fast enough on your local computer then there is a higher chance that it will be more slower when it is already installed and loaded on your web hosting. Another benefit of this setup is that you will have a record for benchmarking your website’s speed. Once your site is already up and running on your web hosting then you can run a series of speed test. There are online tools that can provide you this results.Now about responsiveness. Unlike so many years ago, you have to consider now that there are so many platforms where your readers can access your website. It can be from their desktop computer, laptop, mobile devices, tablets, and many more. These devices has its own screen resolution display – now that’s what you have to consider. Your website might look good on your computer but totally distorted when loaded on a mobile device. Testing your WordPress theme’s CSS to load on different devices is important so that your readers won’t be annoyed and quickly get away from your website or blog. You want them to stay right?
- Plugin Testing – Most of us rely on WordPress plugins (thanks to all developers!) to improve or enhance our website or blog. Sometimes it is not because we’re too lazy to write some codes but we don’t have a single bit of idea how to go about it. That’s why we rely on these wonderful WordPress plugins. However, not all WordPress plugins are bound to work. It could be one or two of the following – (a.) The code of the plugin is no longer compatible with the latest version of WP or themes you are using; (b.) CSS conflicts. That is why you it will be better if you install WordPress locally first to test these plugins (whether free or Premium). If you are looking for customized WordPress plugin, I can recommend Code Canyon. Code Canyon have a wide list of pre-made plugins and even designs. Here’s one my “Most viewed post widget plugin” review of the plugin I am using from Code Canyon.
- Further Customization – If you are code-savvy or even enthusiast then I am sure you would want to customize the design yourself. Or even with the simplest adding small codes like Google Analytics, or adding codes from Bing, Yandex, and many more to submit your sitemap, and many more. I am sure you wanted to add more customization into your WordPress theme. If you have install WordPress locally then you can be sure that the code is running smoothly before you apply it into your live website.
- Personal Backup – Each of us have their own means of backing up our website or blog. It is one of the vital roles of a person or company who owns a website. You got to have your own backup. There are so many plugins available to do this for you. However, you have to consider that using a plugin will consume disk space on your web hosting. This will be at your disadvantage if you are subscribed with limited disk space hosting services. Other web hosting companies offers the same thing like HostGator Site Backup which will cost you $19.95/yr. But if you don’t have the money, having a local WordPress copy of your website will be an advantage. Although it will require additional effort you can be sure that you will have a replica of your website from which you can easily export back.
There are many other reasons and advantages why you have to install WordPress locally in your computer. I will keep on updating this whenever something pops out of my head. Maybe you can share some of them that works for you. We will appreciate it. 🙂
If you want to start to install WordPress on your computer, here’s a quick guide I previously published. This is a tutorial on how you can install WordPress using XAMPP. Or probably you want another way to install WordPress locally using WampServer.