Did you understand that there are effectively two very distinct platforms for wordpress.org vs wordpress.com? The two are often confused by beginners, leading them to select the incorrect platform. Our consumers often ask us which platform is better:WordPress.org vs WordPress.com. We developed the most extensive comparison between free WordPress.org vs WordPress.com (self-hosted version) to assist address that.
Our objective is to highlight the main distinctions between WordPress.org vs WordPress.com so that you can choose the correct platform for your requirements.
Since choosing the right platform is crucial to your online success, we’ve created the most complete WordPress.org vs WordPress.com comparison (text comparison, table-based comparison, and a complete infographic).
You can skip this post and head over to our guides here if you just want to begin a blog or create a website the RIGHT way:
- How to Start a Blog with WordPress (step by step)
- How to Create a Website with WordPress (step by step)
Having said that, let’s take a look at the differences between self-hosted WordPress.org vs WordPress.com.
WordPress.org vs WordPress.com Difference
The best way to understand the distinctions between WordPress.com vs WordPress.org is to take a look at each platform individually.
WordPress.org, known as “the true WordPress,” is the famous website platform you’ve heard about all the great things.
For anyone to use it is open source and 100% free. A domain name and internet hosting are all you need. That’s why it’s also called self-hosted WordPress.
Below are the pros and cons of building your website or blog using the self-hosted WordPress.org.
- It’s free and user-friendly.
- You own your website and all its information. Your website will NOT be turned off as somebody decides it’s against their terms of service (as long as you don’t do something illegal). You are in complete command.
- You can add to your website free, paid, and personalized WordPress plugins/apps.
- You can use your website design to customize as required. You can add any WordPress theme you want free or paid. You can also produce custom designs entirely or alter anything you want.
- By running your own advertisements without sharing income with anyone, you can truly make money from your WordPress site.
- You can use powerful tools for custom analytics and monitoring, such as Google Analytics.
- You can use self-hosted WordPress to build an online store for selling digital or physical products, accept payments by credit card, and deliver/send the goods directly from your website.
- You can also create membership sites and sell memberships around your website for premium content, classes, etc.
There are very few disadvantages to using self-hosted WordPress.org’s site.
- You’re going to need Web hosting like all websites. This is where information is stored on the internet for your website. The price is initially about $3-$10 a month. But as your website grows and gets more traffic, the cost of web hosting will rise as expected, but then you’d make enough money to cover the cost.
- You are in charge of updates. By merely pressing the update button(1-click), you can readily update your WordPress page, so it’s not too much work.
- You’re in charge of backups. Fortunately, tons of WordPress backup plugins are available that allow you to set up automatic backups.
WordPress.org website’s actual price differs depending on what you’re attempting to build (easy blog, portfolio website, eCommerce store, membership site, etc.). Other variables include free templates vs premium templates, free plugins vs premium plugins, etc.
You can create your website for as little as $46 a year on a small budget. See our guide on how much it really costs to build the complete information of a WordPress website.
Our suggestion is to always use WordPress.org for 99 per cent of users. See our guide on how to start a website.
WordPress.com is a hosting service created by the co-founder of WordPress, Matt Mullenweg. Users often confuse WordPress.com with the famous WordPress.org software because of the same founder.
The hosting service for WordPress.com has five plans:
- free–very restricted.
- Personal–$36 per annum
- Premium–$99 per annum
- Business–$299 per annum
- VIP–starting at $5000 per month
Let’s look at WordPress.com’s pros and cons.
For hobby bloggers and those who start a blog for their family, the free WordPress.com platform is a useful option.
Here are some of the advantages of using WordPress.com: up to 3 GB of space is free. You’ll need to move to a paid plan for more space after that. (Personal $36/year plan provides you 6 GB, Premium $99/year plan gives you 13 GB storage or $299/year business plan for unlimited storage).
There’s no need to worry about updates or backups. WordPress.com is going to look after that.
There are a number of free WordPress.com constraints that make it different from WordPress.org. Here are some of WordPress.com’s disadvantages:
- They place advertisements on all free websites. So your consumers are going to see advertisements and you’re not making money out of it. You can upgrade to a paid plan if you don’t want your customers to see their advertisements (beginning at $36 per year).
- On your website, you are NOT permitted to sell advertisements. If you operate a heavy traffic site, you can apply for their WordAds advertising program where you share income with them. Users of the Premium and Business plan can immediately use WordAds.
- Plugins can’t be uploaded. JetPack characteristics are pre-activated for free plan users. Users of business plans can install compatible plugins from a choice ($299/year). WordPress.com VIP program allows plugins to be installed and begins at $5,000 a month.
- Custom themes can’t be uploaded. Free plan users can install only from a restricted set of free topics. Users of Premium and Business Plan can also choose topics. The free version has restricted customization choices. Custom CSS can be used by customers of Premium and Business plan.
- You’re limited to their statistics. No other strong monitoring platform can be added to Google Analytics or installed. Google Analytics can be installed by customers of the business plan.
- If they believe it violates their Terms of Service, they can delete your site anytime.
- Your website will show a WordPress.com driven connection. By upgrading to the business plan, it can be withdrawn.
- No eCommerce characteristics or embedded payment gateways are available from WordPress.com.
- With WordPress.com, you can’t create membership pages.
As you can see, when you’re on the free, personal, or even premium plan, the WordPress.com hosting platform is quite limited. You need to be on the business plan ($299 per year) or on the VIP plan ($5000 per month) to unlock some of the more sophisticated characteristics.
The confusion generated by comparable domains is quite unfortunate for beginners: WordPress.org vs WordPress.com. There’s a lot of history behind the choices, and in our article how WordPress.com and WordPress.org are connected you can read more about that.
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