WordPress.com vs WordPress.org are more of confusing terms. And when a new user or beginner hears the term “WordPress” and then does a little digging. They get “WordPress.com” and “WordPress.org” as search results which make them unclear and confuse them even more. Trust me, if I were in their place I would have felt the same. But don’t worry, in this article, we will help clear up your confusion and let you find out the differences.
WordPress.org and WordPress.com sound similar but are totally different in use. Both have different working mechanism apart from the name being the same. Another similarity can be the features of themes and plugins but again they are dissimilar in both WordPress.com and WordPress.org. You can get free themes and plugins which are easily customizable in WordPress.org. Whereas, customization feature will be available only if you upgrade it to business plan in WordPress.com. Here, we have picked up some of the core differences that will be useful for any individuals who are willing to use either WordPress.com or WordPress.org.
Let’s just know about WordPress. com and WordPress.org
First of all, you need to know “What is WordPress?”. WordPress is a free and open-source platform for building sites. As you can see it covers almost 60 million websites throughout the world. It is the most popular website management system, hence the world’s mostly used site building software. Whenever we look for “WordPress” the two other terms “WordPress.com” and “WordPress.org” always associates with it. So what are those, let’s find out.
WordPress.com is a blogging platform which is an open source software used by bloggers. It is owned and hosted by Automattic, a commercial company created for hosting WordPress driven sites. It is a hosted site where the user will be using the web space provided by the hosting company. Building a website is easy with WordPress.com and you don’t require any coding knowledge. It provides users all the tools required for creating the site. As it takes care of hosting, you don’t need to download/install WordPress or any software. All you need to do is sign up a free account pick a theme and start publishing it.
Similarly, WordPress.org, on the other hand, is a self-hosted site. Here the users will have access to site files, codes and deploy them however they like. They can have their own domain name and can choose any web hosting. Some of the web hostings are Bluehost, SiteGround, HostGator, etc. You can apply any of them for your site. Also, we can say WordPress.org is the home of WordPress software files and a collection of templates in PHP programming language. For both beginners and experienced developers, WordPress.org is easy to use as you get customizable templates, plugins for added functionality. The visual text editor just smoothens the work in WordPress.org.
From WordPress.org you get to download the WordPress software which is free and open source content management system. You need to install the software on a web browser to use it. So if you download WordPress from WordPress.org you set it up as a host. Then you use the downloaded WordPress on your website after setting it up with the hosting provider. You can choose any web hosting for your site. You can either free WordPress hosting for your site or paid. For this reason, WordPress.org is called as self-hosted. In the case of WordPress.com, you don’t need to install WordPress and can create a site just signing up for WordPress.com account.
If you just want to create a site quickly without worrying about designs or ongoing site maintenance or other technical issues then you can choose WordPress.com. This has been a popular choice of students, bloggers, and other creative peoples as the users don’t have to go through the customization options for free versions. But in WordPress.org you get full control of your website. You are free to customize your site the way you want to.
Themes are considered as one of the unique features of WordPress. In WordPress.com you can not upload custom themes and free plan users can only install from the limited free themes collection. The users will get minimum customization options for the free version. Premium and business plan users can use premium themes, and also get to use custom CSS. You can add any free or paid themes and easily customize your site in WordPress.org. Here you can create custom designs or modify the way you like. So WordPress.org is a bit more flexible than WordPress.com.
Similarly, WordPress.com is available with preactivated JetPack plugin features. You can not upload other plugins. Only business plan users get to install a selection of compatible plugins costing $299 per year. The VIP plan of WordPress lets you install the plugins and the range starts from $5000 per month. Whereas in WordPress.org you can add free, paid and custom WordPress plugins/apps to your site.
You don’t get to sell ads on your website in WordPress.com instead, they will be placing all their adds in your site. Hence you won’t be able to make money from it. But you can upgrade to paid plan starting from $36 per year if you don’t want users to see their ads. You will not find many restrictions in WordPress.org as you can easily place ads in your site and make money from it.
Also, you aren’t allowed to install or add Google Analytics or any other powerful tracking platform in WordPress.com. If you want to then you can upgrade to the business plan. In WordPress.org you can use Google Analytics or any other for custom analytics and trackings.
From here you can look out the things that separate WordPress.com vs WordPress.org. Both the terms have got major differences as you can look above in the text. Finding out more about WordPress.com vs WordPress.org will obviously let the user be clear about them and can choose whichever platform they want to for their sites.
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