Since its launch, WordPress is improving and opening doors to new possibilities both as a blogging platform and Content Management System or CMS. What started as just blogging software has now become the most famous CMS across the globe.
Being an open-source application, it gives a lot of room to developers to experiment with the code and come up with better functionalities. For anyone who is new to blogging and just learned the term WordPress, one of the most common questions that pop up in the mind is how WordPress.com and WordPress.org are different.
The key differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org are as follows:
Who is hosting it?
The main difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org is how your blog is being hosted on these services. When you choose WordPress.com, you will be using WordPress’s servers to host your website or blog.
On the other hand, when we talk about WordPress.org, it is the application that you get which you can install on your own webspace that you have rented to host a website.
The web address
When you create a blog or website on WordPress.com, you will initially get a subdomain under WordPress.com. It is a free service that you can avail of before you decide to buy your own domain. In case you already have a domain you can mask it on the WordPress.com subdomain. On the other hand, in order to use WordPress.org’s application, you need to have a domain and server space to host the application.
While you can register and use WordPress.com’s platform for free but for additional features you will need to pay by upgrading your package. On the other hand, thanks to open source development, WordPress.org application is free and the cost involved here is of the domain, hosting and third-party plugins.
Plugins and backend access
You will not get the backend access to the code on WordPress.com and you have to use only available plugins and themes. On the other hand, you can install as many plugins and themes as you want on the self-hosted WordPress.org application. There are some plugins which some hosts do not allow on their servers so you may have to check with the host.
WordPress.com has its own advertisement system and they put banners on free blogs running on their platform which you cannot remove. Monetization of the WordPress.com blogs is difficult for the users.
On the other hand on WordPress.org websites or blogs, there is no restriction on monetization and you can remove WordPress’s link from the footer. However, if you are using a free theme you may have to keep the footer link to the theme developer to keep using it for free under the license agreement.
WordPress.com and WordPress.org are both very popular platforms. Though they come from the same company and the basic functionality is the same, there are some key differences which we have mentioned above. Understanding these differences will help you in choosing the right platform for your website or blog.