WordPress.com vs WordPress.org: What’s the Difference

LAST UPDATED: April 19, 2021 • POSTED IN:

Most people don’t know that WordPress.com and WordPress.org both are different platforms.

Yes, they’re different and today in this post we’re going to differentiate both of them. 

While starting a blog most beginners got confused while picking up the right platform and they come up with a question. What’s the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?

Also, you’ll get a different result on Google as well.

search-wordpress-on-google

No matter what platform you’re going to use, definitely you’ve to pay some money. So, let’s get started and compare both of them

Quick Comparison: WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

WordPress.com-vs-Wordpress.org-Infographic

To give you an overview,

With WordPress.org, you have to buy hosting space and install WordPress on it and then you host your own site (recommended way).

With WordPress.com, WordPress has built their own managed service by using WordPress.org itself and they take care of all things (not recommended)

Understand it by taking an example, WordPress team has developed an open-source software and named it WordPress.org (can be installed anywhere) and then they created another managed service by using the open-source software and named it WordPress.com

Nowadays, hosting companies like Bluehost, A2Hosting, SiteGround, etc have made it easy to install WordPress.org with just a single click which is very easy, fast, and gives more freedom.

Now let’s understand each platform individually.

WordPress.com: Pros and Cons

The only benefit that I can see with WordPress.com is that it is a managed service and you don’t have to manage things like hosting and security on your own.

You’re limited to use 3GB of storage and domain with WordPress branding (mydomain.wordpress.com) to remove all these limits you’ll need to upgrade your plan (which will cost you around ~25$ – 200$)

There is no option to install plugins, upload themes, SEO tools, and to remove ads you have to pay more up to 96$ per year.

WordPress.com costs you higher and doesn’t provide you the flexibility of work. Let’s see the major pros and cons of using WordPress.com

PROSCONS
You get a robust platformCosts too much.
3GB of Storage in the FREE planWordPress will run Ads on your website and to remove them (or earn from them), pay at least $48 per year.
Not to worry about updates and security.You can’t install third-party plugins and themes.
Can’t integrate payment gateways.
Your website will be at high risk and can be deleted if you violate any terms.
You can’t remove WordPress branding, you have to pay for that.
You’ve to pay if you want to integrate Google Analytics.
Automated site backups and restore are only available in higher plans.
SFTP and Database Access is not allowed (Business plan needed).
SEO tools not available (Upgrade required)

In short, you’ve to pay and pay every time for every service you want to integrate and this can be done with WordPress.org by paying just once (for hosting).

WordPress.org: Pros and Cons

This is the real hero of the Internet.

Almost, 20% of the world’s self-hosted website uses WordPress.org which is very huge.

It enables you to do things in your own way, you just need to buy a hosting, install WordPress and start using it.

The biggest benefit of using WordPress.org that there are no limits, you’re free to use plugins, themes, SEO tools, analytics tools, custom domains, and much more.

WordPress is all about plugins, without them your website is nothing and you may miss a lot of incredible features.

WordPress.org powers you to create and customize any type of website including blogs, magazines, learning, eCommerce, dropshipping, etc.

It also comes with some bad points that you don’t like. Let’s deep dive into the pros and cons of using Wordrpress.org

PROSCONS
WordPress.org is free, open-source, and super easy to useIf your website grows, you need to pay for bandwidth & storage
You can use any plugins, themes of your choiceYou should have the minimum experience to handle WordPress
No matter what, your website will not be terminatedYou need to take care of backup and security.
You can fully monetize your website. (All money is yours)
You can create any type of blog, website, or store
You can integrate payment gateways
Backup and Restore are super easy with Plugins
SFTP and Database Access is allowed
You can customize at any level.
Costs less

Pricing: WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

Let’s consider that you want to start a website from scratch. Let’s compare both the cases and see how much WordPress.com will cost in comparison to WordPress.org?

Let’s start with WordPress.com

The WordPress.com hosting service has 6 pricing plans:

  • Free – Very limited.
  • Personal – $48 per year
  • Premium – $96 per year
  • Business – $300 per year
  • eCommerce – $540 per year

Let’s take the most popular plan (premium), it will cost you $96 per year. After that, you’ll buy a domain that will cost you an additional $14 and that sums around $110 per year, and trust me this is a very minimal requirement to start a website.

wordpress-com-pricing

A complete comparison can be found at the official site.

Now let’s have a look at WordPress.org

If you’re going to start a blog and want to purchase hosting, I would recommend buying Bluehost, because it is a cheap and trustworthy hosting provider in the market.

It will cost you $71.40  ($5.95 for 12 months) and if you buy it for 36 months it will cost you ($3.95 for 36 months) which is around $47 per year and with domain, it will cost you roughly $60 per year.

You must read our Bluehost Review.

The biggest benefit I can see here is FREEDOM of developing things. You’re the boss of your website. You’re free to customize it, install plugins and themes.

Conclusion: Which One to Use?

If you ask us, the self-hosted platform is the best and you can scale your business in a limitless manner. I would recommend buying a domain name from Godaddy, Namecheap, etc, and decent hosting from Bluehost, A2Hosting, or Siteground.

Definitely, you’ll need to pay more attention to manage things such as designing, developing, and managing the security part but you’ll thank me later.

If you’re a casual blogger, who writes a single blog post in a month or two, and don’t care about monetization, branding, and traffic then you can create a website for FREE with WordPress.com (Sit back and Relax)

Hope you understand the difference between Worpress.com and WordPress.org. If So, share this post and help others.

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