There is no denying how powerful, versatile and popular the WordPress website building platform is, but do you know there are actually two different WordPress platforms to choose from?
A lot of people don’t actually realize that WordPress.com and WordPress.org are two completely different options when it comes to building your website, so I thought it would be useful to make a post talking about some of the similarities and differences between the two, talk about my preferred choice and which option would best suite you.
Read on if you want to learn more and figure out whether WordPress.com or WordPress.org is best for you!
What is WordPress.com? The Pros & Cons
WordPress.com is a website building platform that is “free to use” and actually utilizes the same platform used by WordPress.org, with a few major drawbacks.
Lets start off by talking about one of the bigger pros of using WordPress.com in contrast to .org, which is that you can start out with them for free, although you may have noticed I first put the word free on quotations, and for good reason(I will get to it in a moment).
Other pros include WordPress.com taking care of your hosting, being rather easy to use and…..well those are really the best things about them. Rather small list right? Don’t worry, the list of cons that comes with using WordPress.com over .org will more than make up for the shortness of the pros list.
WordPress.com allows you to use their services without paying them a dime, but the restrictions placed are you if you choose this option are numerous, including being required to use the WordPress sub domain (example: www.yourwebsite.wordpress.com), which is something that literally nobody who is interested in building a professional website would find acceptable, so if you want to be able to use your own domain then you are going to have to pay.
The three options available that cost money include a 3$ a month account, a $8.25 account and a $25 a month account, so its pretty fair to say the prices are affordable, although unfortunately one major turn off when it comes to paying(a turn off for some at least) is that you will have to pay for a year up front instead of dulling out an $8 dollar payment a month as an example.
When I said that WordPress.com is restrictive I wasn’t exaggerating, you should know that if you want to be able to run ads on your own website to monetize it then you will have to pay for the $8.25 account to be able to do so, and if you want to add affiliate links to your website and make money that way, then you are out of luck because doing so goes against their terms of service and do not allow people to do so.
WordPress.com reserves the right to delete your website whenever they so wish if they claim that you have in any way violated their terms and agreements, so that’s another thing you should keep in mind when deciding the best choice for you.
Ahh lets see what else, oh right, THERE ARE NO ADD ONS/PLUGINS AVAILABLE. ZERO. NONE. So that’s another one for the cons column if you ask anyone. So yeah, overall its fair to say that while WordPress.com is affordable and quick to set up, hell it can even be called free if your needs for your website are as bare bones as they come and you aren’t expecting to do too much, overall WordPress.com is just going to be a waste of time for most people who have actual goals they want to accomplish online as you will find it difficult to really do too much with them.
WordPress.org on the other hand…..
What Is WordPress.org? The Pros & Cons
WordPress.org just like WordPress.com is a website building platform, but defers in just about every way such as .org being an open source program, meaning anyone with the skills and knowledge can add to and improve this platform, and a lot of people do just that.
Lets talk about the pros, the biggest pro being that you have complete and total control over your website and everything about it should you choose to use WordPress.org, something that most certainly cannot be said for .com. Its every bit as easy to use as .com, and far more versatile thanks to the MASSIVE pro that is plugins.
Plugins are downloadable add ons that you can find through the WordPress plugin library that add all kinds of different functionality to your site that WordPress.com doesn’t even come close to offering. Many of the plugins available(there are thousands)are free to use, others are freemium and some are paid plugins, but you should be able to find a free plugin for just about anything you need for your site.
The last big pro of using WordPress.org has definitely got to be the freedom to be able to profit off your website any way you wish without a company standing over your shoulder restricting how you make your money. You can set up your own ads no problem and load your website with whatever affiliate links that you wish, which is a very welcome feature(to say the least).
As for the cons that come with WordPress.org, there are some but there really is no comparison in regards to WordPress.com. Without a doubt the biggest con to using .org has to be that you will have to find your own hosting for your website if you want to use .org, and just to put things in perspective, that really isn’t all that big of a deal.
You could, as an example, head over to Bluehost where you can get your website hosted for $4 a month and that includes a free domain name as well! Bluehost even offers a one button setup for WordPress when you sign up for a hosting package so that really is a non issue if we are being honest when you consider you were going to at the very least have to pay for the first account option with WordPress.com, you just would have had way less functionality for your website.
The last thing I can think of that would really be considered a con without nit picking would have to be that you are going to have to be the one to backup your website regularly and perform updates, although these are also not really big problems that anyone can handle rather easily, it will just take a bit of time on your part.
Long story short, do not waste your time with WordPress.com, do yourself a solid and get hosting set up through Bluehost for $4 a month(or more depending on what you want) and just use WordPress.org, trust me when I say you will not regret it.
Have you ever heard of the online trade school Wealthy Affiliate(WA)? Wealthy Affiliate is considered one of if not the absolute best schools available online that offer to teach students how to create professional websites and the various methods of monetizing said website.
Whats interesting about WA is if you signup with them (its free to sign up although you can pay for a premium account if you end up liking the classes) is they handle things such as hosting and web security for you, whether you pay for a premium account or not, so this school basically helps to take care of everything you need to learn how to and implement your plan of action. If this is something that interests you and you would like to read more about them then check this page out right here.
Hopefully this post was able to help you see why WordPress.org is the far superior choice to WordPress.com. Do you have a website building platform picked out yet, and if so what is it? I would love to hear from you in the comments down below, please make sure to leave one for me to read!
Thank you for reading,