Whats the difference between Wordpress.com and Wordpress.org?
Wordpress can be one of the most complex CMS (Content Management System) but at the same time, for those who have mastered the craft of this complexity; it can offer you the most freedom in developing the website that you want. What most people don’t realise is there are actually two instances of Wordpress, the self-hosted solution of Wordpress.org and the free version of Wordpress.com. For new users to blogging, Wordpress.com offers the best solution to develop a simple blog and build your brand. If you have plans of monetising this blog however, we would highly recommend starting off on Wordpress.org as you can avoid any migration issues and redesign of your site should you decide to move in the future.
Wordpress.com does have a few cons. The inability to control what ads are placed on your site could be an issue for some users. If you’re looking for a clean ad free solution, there is a cost involved, £24.05 a year to be exact. What about if you need to add a plugin on your free site? You could always join their VIP program to be able to add plugins on the free site, that’s £3008.66. Perhaps the change you want is to just change the colour of a particular theme; well that’s £25 a year. With all these costs, you would think you ‘own’ your content. Well the answer is no, your site can be deleted at any given time, if ‘they’ think it violates their Terms of Service. But it’s not all doom and gloom, if all you want to do is blog, then Wordpress.com is without a doubt the best solution. For a small enough site with no plugin requirements, it is the cheapest solution (well, it’s free…).
Wordpress.org gives you the freedom to own your own data, so every picture posted, text published and video showcased, you remain the content owner. You have the liberty to upload and use plugins, modify themes and even start creating your own custom themes. But alongside all of this power, the responsibility of backups and updates now falls on you. Services such as BackupBuddy exists to help you with backing up your site (Alternative: UpDraftPlus) . We recommend regular backups and to also do backups before implementing a change to your site. So before adding a new plugin, backing up the website in its state before will save you countless hours trying to fix something when you can just load a backup.
We recommend Wordpress.org as it makes financial sense to have the full package and develop your skillset with it. By watching YouTube videos and tutorials, you will learn everything you need to know to support your site, whereas with Wordpress.com there are too many limitations that will not improve your talent set. The yearly costs of Wordpress.org can actually end up being cheaper than using Wordpress.com, thats if you decide to start paying for Wordpress.com. For those who didn't read the text, we put a infographic for you, even added a video to get you started.