I can’t stress how important it is to get this right from the very start.
I see so many people using WordPress.com and I believe it’s because they are not aware of major differences between the two types of WordPress platforms.
To be honest, I was one of those people who started with WordPress.com but not because I wanted to, but because I didn’t know any better…
At the end of the day you would assume that WordPress is WordPress right?
WordPress.com Vs WordPress.org – The Difference
WordPress.com is a free blogging platform where you can simply sign up for an account and start blogging.
The thing with WordPress.com is that all of the content you create is hosted on the WordPress.com servers which means they have complete control of your entire website and are in charge of what you can and cannot do.
WordPress.org on the over hand is a free downloadable installation of the WordPress software.
This means you download the package from their website and upload it to your web server which allows you to have complete control over your website.
In order to use WordPress.org you will need to purchase your own Web Host and Domain Name.
WordPress.org may sound completed at first but it is extremely easy to set-up!
If you need guidance with setting it up then I recommend you take a look at my Free Step-by-Step WordPress Video Training Series.
9 Reasons You Should NOT Use WordPress.com
1. Expensive To Change Your URL Address
2. Cannot Customize Your Website
3. Limited WordPress Themes To Pick From
4. Unable To Install Plugins To Extend Website Functionality
5. WordPress.com Displays Advertisements
6. You Don’t Technically Own Your Website
7. You Cannot Monetize your Website
8. Limited Storage Space
9. Cannot Customize URL Structure
If I was using WordPress.com to run my website then the URL of my website would be peterstavrou.wordpress.com instead of peterstavrou.com.
WordPress.com gives you the option to change your URL address by registering a domain name for $24 a year and an extra $10 per year for domain privacy.
Once the year is over you will receive a domain renewal fee of $17 plus a fee of $10 if you want to continue using domain privacy.
If you already own a domain you are required to pay a fee to map it to your website.
Changing your URL address in WordPress.org is free as long as you have a domain name.
Unlike WordPress.org, WordPress.com really limits the access you have making it impossible for you to ever have access to the files on the server.
This prevents you from customizing your website using CSS, PHP and third-party services such as Google Analytics.
The amount of free themes you have to pick from on WordPress.com are very limited and if you want a larger selection you will need to purchase them and this can be a pricey.
In addition, you cannot upload custom themes like you can with WordPress.org.
Not having the ability to install plugins on WordPress.com is a major let down as plugins are a great and very easy way to extend the functionality of your website.
Examples of Plugins used on this page:
WordPress.com will sometimes display advertisements on your website to help them pay their bills.
Also, in the footer of your entire website you will have credit link that reads:
Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com. | Credit To The Theme Designer.
You can of course remove ads completely but you will be slapped with a hefty fee of $129 per year.
If you are using WordPress.com to run your website then you do not technically own it because you need to register an account and abide by their Terms of Services.
If they feel that you are violating their terms of service they can choose to suspend your account forever.
WordPress.com does not allow you to monetize your website which means affiliate products and advertisements from networks such as Google AdSense, Lijit, OpenX, Vibrant Media and BuySellAds are not allowed.
All WordPress.com blogs have a maximum storage space of 3GB which really isn’t much at all…
You can choose to increase your storage space to 13Gb for $129 a year or go unlimited for $399 a year.
Not being able to customize your website’s URL address structure is a massive disadvantage!
For example, if you take a look at the URL address of the blog post I made on How to Update WordPress you will notice that the URL address is:
The reason why this URL is so clean and user-friendly is because I manually changed it by clicking on the edit button and typing in the URL I wanted the post to have.
If I made this exact same post using WordPress.com my URL structure would look like this:
Unfortunately WordPress.com does not allow you to change this.
You should definitely not use WordPress.com as it is completely inferior to WordPress.org in every way possible!
You will also find that the cost of running a WordPress.com site is much more expensive and you don’t even get anywhere near as much functionality as you would if you were to use WordPress.org.
If you already started a website on WordPress.com then I recommend you buy an affordable web host and upload WordPress.org to it.
If you need help uploading and creating your website then I recommend you watch my Step-by-Step WordPress Video Training Series.
You can also export your content from WordPress.com and import it into WordPress.org so you don’t need to spend time re-writing the same content. If you need help with exporting and importing your content across then click here.
What are your thoughts on this topic?