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Lana Miro
Partner Manager at Crocoblock
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WordPress.org vs. WordPress.com Comparison: Key Differences

Did you know there is a vast difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?

Beginners frequently mix up WordPress.com with WordPress.org, which causes them to pick the incorrect blogging platform for their requirements. Unfortunately, even people aware that the two platforms are distinct are unaware of their distinctions.

What Is WordPress.org?

wordpress org homepage

You’ve probably heard fantastic things about the well-liked website platform known as “the genuine WordPress,” or WordPress.org.

WordPress.org is open-source software that anybody may use at no cost. All you require is site hosting and a domain name. Because of this, it is also known as self-hosted WordPress.

What Are the Benefits of Using WordPress.org?

You have complete control over your website when you use WordPress.org. You may alter it however you need to and do whatever you want.

Here are some of the top WordPress.org benefits listed below, along with why it is our top recommendation for the best website builder.

  • The WordPress platform is user-friendly, open-source, and free.
  • More than 43% of websites on the web utilize WordPress (see Why is WordPress Free?).
  • Your website and all of its content are yours. Because someone determines it is against their terms of service, your site won’t be shut down. You have complete control over your website.
  • Ability to install free, premium, and unique WordPress plugins to your website.
  • The website’s design can be changed as necessary. You may include any WordPress theme, whether it is free or premium. Additionally, you may alter anything you want or design anything entirely from scratch.
  • Your WordPress website may generate income if you run your advertisements.
  • Add tracking and analytics tools, like Google Analytics.
  • Create an online store using self-hosted WordPress to sell products or digital items, collect credit card payments, and distribute and ship the things right from your website.
  • You may also develop an online community around your website by creating membership sites, selling subscriptions for premium material, classes, etc.

What Are the Drawbacks of Using WordPress.org?

The self-hosted WordPress.org website has relatively few drawbacks.

  • You require web hosting, just like other websites. The initial price is between $3 and $10 per month. However, the cost of the web hosting plan will rise due to expansion, but by then, you should have enough income. Your website’s files are kept online in this location.
  • WordPress must be installed. Fortunately, most well-known WordPress hosting providers provide one-click WordPress installation alternatives.
  • You are in charge of updates. It’s not a lot of work to update your WordPress site because you can do it with only one click on the update button.
  • You are in charge of making backups. Fortunately, several WordPress backup plugins are available that enable automated backup configuration.

Depending on the type of website you’re seeking to create, WordPress.org’s actual cost varies. There are further aspects, such as free vs. paid layouts, free vs. premium plugins, etc.

What Is WordPress.com?

wordpress com homepage

Automattic, the organization run by Matt Mullenweg, the co-founder of WordPress, developed the hosting service WordPress.com. Users frequently mix up WordPress.com and the well-known WordPress.org software due to the same founder.

There are six pricing tiers for the WordPress.com hosting service:

  • Free – Very few available.
  • Personal – $48 annually – Premium – $96 annually
  • Business: $300 annually
  • E-commerce: $540 annually
  • VIP memberships begin at $25000 per year.

What Are the Benefits of Using WordPress.com?

Those beginning a blog for their family or as a pastime should use the free WordPress.com platform.

The following are some advantages of utilizing WordPress.com:

  • First, for up to 3GB of space, it’s free. After that, if you want extra storage, you’ll have to upgrade to a premium plan. (You get 6GB of storage with the Personal plan for $48/year, 13GB of storage with the Premium plan for $96/year, and 200 GB of storage with the Business plan for $300/year.)
  • Updates and backups won’t be a concern for you. WordPress.com will handle it for you.

What Are the Drawbacks of Using WordPress.Com?

Free WordPress.com has several restrictions that set it apart from WordPress.org.

The following are a few drawbacks of WordPress.com:

  • Every free website has advertising on it. Your users see these advertisements, but you are not compensated. Upgrade to a premium WordPress.com account (beginning at $48 per year) if you don’t want your users to view their adverts.
  • Your website cannot sell advertisements, which significantly restricts the methods in which it may be monetized. However, if your website receives a lot of traffic, you may consider joining their WordAds revenue-sharing program.
  • Plugins cannot be uploaded. Users of the free plan have preactivated Jetpack capabilities. Users can install any of several plugins for $300 per year. Plugin installation is possible through the WordPress.com VIP membership, which costs $5,000 per month.
  • The free edition only offers a few customizing possibilities. No one may add their themes. If you are on the free plan can only install from the small selection of free themes. If you are on the premium or business plan may also choose paid themes. If you are on the Premium or Business plan, you can utilize unique CSS.
  • You cannot install Google Analytics or any robust tracking system. However, users of business plans can set up Google Analytics. You can only use their stats.
  • Free WordPress.com sites have a subdomain with the WordPress.com logo, such as https://yourwebsite.wordpress.com. However, you must purchase a plan to obtain a custom domain name, such as https://www.yourwebsite.com.
  • If they believe your site violates their terms of service, they have the right to erase it at any moment.
  • There will be a powered by WordPress.com link on your website. However, upgrading to the Business plan can be taken away.
  • Unless you upgrade to the eCommerce package, WordPress.com does not include any eCommerce functionality or connected payment methods.
  • WordPress.com cannot be used to develop membership websites.

As you can see, when you’re on the free, personal, or even premium plan, the WordPress.com hosting platform is somewhat constrained. To use some advanced features, you must be on the business ($300 annually) or VIP plan ($25000 annually).

Which One Is Better? WordPress.org or WordPress.com

Choose the free WordPress.com option if you are a personal blogger and don’t worry about generating money from your website.

I advise utilizing self-hosted WordPress.org if you are a company or blogger that wishes to monetize your website. Then, you have the choice and flexibility to develop your website how you see fit.

While the WordPress.com Business plan, which costs $300 annually for each website, comes with several sophisticated features, you can get considerably more for your money by using a self-hosted WordPress website, which costs only $46 annually.

In my opinion, WordPress.org is unquestionably the superior platform. Every professional blogger, small company owner, and even household names like Disney use that platform.

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Conclusion

The comparison of renting a house vs. owning a home is the most effective method to understand the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.

Using WordPress.com is like renting a home. Your ability to decide what you can and cannot accomplish is constrained.

WordPress.org is comparable to home ownership. No one can eject you from a situation where you have complete control, and you are free to do whatever you desire.