A Quick Guide to WordPress Multisite: What You Need to Know

Written by Jessica Frick on
A WordPress logo graphic demonstrating WordPress multisite hosting

Are you a WordPress user? Do you plan to create multiple websites for your different business chains? Are you wondering how you can manage all these websites efficiently? If you answered yes to these questions, then you’ll want to understand WordPress multisite hosting.

Then the answer to your concerns is the WordPress Multisite. Businesses from different fields use this impressive WordPress feature to access and manage their multiple sites on WordPress. From media outfits to academic institutions, they all enjoy the various benefits of a WordPress Multisite.

But how do you maximize the feature to the fullest? How and where do you start?

Continue reading below as we give you a comprehensive lowdown on WordPress Multisite.

Understanding the Basics of WordPress Multisite

To get a better appreciation of the WordPress Multisite, let us first understand what it is. It is a feature that lets you manage different websites using only a single WordPress installation.

24/7 WordPress Support

from real WordPress experts


This means you can access, tweak, and edit multiple websites through one WordPress dashboard. Interestingly, WordPress Multisite is not a new offering. It has been around since the inception of WordPress 3.0 back in 2010.

The only thing different is the name. The feature used to carry the name WordPress Multi-User or WPMU.

Though the WordPress Multisite is already part of the WordPress CMS, it is not automatically available for use. To convert WordPress to Multisite is like flipping a switch. You need to turn on the feature first before you can use it.

Tracing its roots to the WPMU, WordPress Multisite adopted the latter’s idea of building a network of blogs. But it also took the idea to the next level by expanding it to create a network of websites.

Key Features 

When it comes to the key features, there are many. Apart from running a network of websites, you can perform some micromanaging. Multisite lets you create an extensive network of directories and subdomains.

Moreover, you can create separate domains for each of your websites if you want to. With the Multisite, you can play like a Master Administrator. You can control user accessibility across all your sites.

You can add and delete plugins and themes. You can customize them to better fit the needs of your target market. For example, if one of your sites is catering to Asia, you can tweak the site’s settings to accommodate the market’s language, currency, and region.

Management Differences

Another important aspect to consider is the differences in management experience. Both the regular WordPress management and Multisite management have access to the sites. However, the latter enjoys more power in the grander scheme of things.

The Multisite administration determines which sites to add or delete from the network. It also activates the themes and plugins.

On the flip side, regular WordPress management can use the tools and other features that the Multisite management applied. However, they cannot edit or modify any of them.

But using the WordPress Multisite does not require that much of an adjustment. It does not disrupt your WordPress installation on a massive scale. All you need is a little bit of practice and familiarity with the features.

Benefits and Advantages

If we are to summarize the benefits of the Multisite, it is saving a lot of time and making you efficient. Multisite cuts your time installing plugins across your sites. With the feature, you can install the same security, performance, and search engine optimization (SEO) plugins in every site in your network.

WordPress Multisite lets you use a more efficient code. With Multisite, you only use one set of WordPress files as your core.

In the same manner, you will only need one copy of each plugin and theme for your different websites. In turn, you will save a lot of server space compared to using a separate WordPress installation for each of your sites.

Furthermore, it will save you more money in terms of your hosting requirements.

When it comes to efficiency, Multisite lets you develop more sites faster. This advantage is most useful when applying custom themes to your websites. You can install a particular WordPress theme that will serve as the parent theme for your network.

For example, if you’re planning to put up a website for each division of your company, you can use a single parent theme for each division. What you will then have are different websites sharing similar design elements.

But even if they may share the same layout and design, Multisite allows you to differentiate each one of them by applying unique “child” themes.

Common Uses

There are different instances where you can use WordPress Multisite. For example: individuals who are running more than one personal website can benefit massively. The same thing goes if you are hosting client sites. With Multisite, you can migrate all their websites to a single network. From there, you can simply update the code when necessary. Moreover, you will only need to backup and secure a single WordPress installation.

When managing different business sites, you can share data across all sites. You can also do the same thing with their users.

In case you’re servicing a company intranet, you can use the Multisite to add every employee as a user. You can also grant them access to the websites they need.

Furthermore, you can share content across the entire network or only to specific websites.

Last but not least, you can monetize WordPress by managing a Multisite network. You can create sites like educational blogs under one network. You can also open your base site and let other people create their respective websites within your network.

And to do all these things, all you need to do is enable WordPress Multisite. Check out WordPress’ step-by-step tutorial on enabling the Multisite feature.

Let Us Manage Your Hosting

Now that you know the basics of WordPress Multisite, you can start building a network one site at a time. But if circumstances are not on your side, we can help you with the hosting and management of those sites.

Pressable offers premium managed WordPress hosting service. Connect with us today and request a free tour. Enjoy world-class WordPress hosting, today!

Web Performance

Load time matters! Do you know how fast your site is?


Jessica Frick

Jessica serves as the Director of Operations for Pressable and spends her days focused on creating the best managed WordPress hosting experience possible. She's been using WordPress since 2008 and has been serving in WordPress-focused roles since 2010. When she's not working, you can find her spending time with her family, serving in her community, watching hilarious dog videos online, or brewing a pitcher of iced tea.