Multisite WordPress or Standalone for Community Site?

I intend to have various WordPress applications (main site/blog, shop, directory, classifieds etc;) on a LEMP stack.

Would prefer to run as a single community site with a shared user database and singular login. (The site will run under one domain) … However I do need different permission for different users on the various applications. (e.g. User A can manage blog, shop but not directory etc;)

I was wondering if a multisite setup would still be ideal? Or should I keep separate standalone installations in various subfolders linked to the same user database(?) I was initially looking at using EasyEngine for a multisite setup.

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It sounds like WordPress Multisites would be a good fit, at least to start out with, for the different sections of your site.

I am not sure about using the same user database for a different install of WordPress…I have never pulled something like that off, but I imagine it could be done. I used to do some real unconventional hacking to WordPress to get it to do things that it was not meant for, but then an upgrade to the next version would break all of my work… Nowadays I leave all core WordPress files alone, and only do my “hacking” on themes and plugins.

The scenarios where I had to move some sites out of a WordPress multisite happened just recently. For many years I hosted some different friends and family on a WordPress Multisite. This year I told everyone I was going to start charging, and some people did not want to pay.

It was not too difficult to pull their sites out, but I would have been sweating if I was not already familiar with how Wordpress structures its database.

Another scenario is where one site (section) on a multisite might be getting tons of traffic, while the rest are only moderate traffic. In this case you might want to move the heavy-traffic site to its own droplet…so you would need to pull the site out and put it in its own WordPress install.