In the previous post, I discussed the basics of hosting a website on your own domain. I will now discuss the factors involved in installing WordPress for maintaining two blogs on this site.
WordPress Installation for Multiple Blogs
After I was the proud owner of www.skepticgeek.com, I had the following options to run my two blogs:
- Use a single WordPress install, and segregate blog posts using different categories for two blogs
- Use two WordPress installs, with a common database at the backend
- Use two WordPress installs that are completely independent with a separate database for each
The decision depends on the following factors:
- Will multiple authors be posting to either of the blogs? Will the same authors post to both blogs? This determines requirements regarding access control and security.
- Do you need two separate, independent feeds for both blogs with separate subscriber tracking? In this case, you need two WordPress installs.
- Is disk space a constraining factor? Two databases will most likely take up more space.
- Do you plan to use different themes, different plugins for the two blogs? If so, separate installs are a must.
- Do you plan to have ads on one blog but not on the other? Again, this means you need two installs.
- Is heavy traffic and site performance a consideration? In that case, using a single database might help site optimization.
I chose to setup two independent WordPress installs, so that I could have guest posts from other authors or even contributing authors to this blog in the future, while I kept An Unquiet Mind as my personal, individual blog.
WordPress Location: Root Directory or Sub Folder?
The next issue is deciding on the WordPress installation folder structure.
Even for installing WordPress for a single blog on your own site, there is conflicting advice. Always install WordPress in the root directory says Daily Blog Tips, while many say Keep it Clean and install WordPress in a subdirectory to keep your root directory clean and manageable. You can see that a question regarding pros and cons of subfolders vs. subdomains has remained unanswered for two years on the WordPress.org forum.
The Pros and Cons of installing your WordPress Blog in a subfolder are summarized here, but the article doesn’t provide an easy way to get the best of both worlds, since it was probably written before WordPress introduced a way to install in a subfolder but power the site’s root.
I believe I chose a way to get the best of both (or all) worlds in the following manner:
- I created two subdomains, geek.skepticgeek.com and skeptic.skepticgeek.com for my technology and personal blogs.
- Since SEO is not important for my personal blog, I installed WordPress on the skeptic.skepticgeek.com subdomain.
- For the Skeptic Geek technology blog, I installed WordPress on the geek.skepticgeek.com subdomain, but pointed the blog at the root. This insulates the blog from link dilution.
In the next post, we’ll look at the steps I performed immediately after the WordPress install.