WordPress.Com Vs. WordPress.Org Blog Format


Should you set up a WordPress blog using WordPress.Com or the WordPress.Org format for your online or offline business?

Let’s put a few of the facts into place and you decide which platform is best for for your needs.

WordPress.Com is very much like the other well know blogging formats, such as Blogger, and Type Pad.  They are all blogging platforms that are owned by blog companies.  Blogger is a free blog platform that is owned by Google.  Type Pad is owned by Six Apart Ldt., and users are charged a yearly fee to use the system.

WordPress.com is a free format that owned and operated by Automattic, which is the team that discovered and developed WordPress in the beginning.  WordPress is initially free, but there is an extra charge for some upgrades and advanced features.

WordPress.Org is a blog platform that was built by Automattic but you own it.

Common Features of WordPress.Com and .Org

1.  Both platforms are based on the same basic software.  The look is the same and they have many of the same features.

WordPress.Com Advantages

1.  It’s free and very easy to set up.  Everything is taken care of, spam, backup, security etc.   You don’t even pay for hosting from a separate company.  In other words, it’s all encompassing.

2.  One of the best features is that fact that no one can get into your account by hacking it because of the security that’s in place.

3.  Your posts are backed up automatically so there is no need to purchase an extra back up system in case something goes wrong.

This system is superior if your want a carefree blog that requires very little of your attention to maintain and operate.

WordPress.Com Cons

1.   There are  hundreds of free themes are available for you to choose from.  However, you cannot run a custom theme.

2.  The code is set.  You cannot change any of the code behind your blog.   In other words, you cannot customize any of the code to make your site look or operate differently.

3.  You cannot customize your site by using additional plugins above and beyond those that are already set into the platform.

4.  WordPress is owned by Automattic.  Which means there are a set of definite standards and agreements you must abide by.  Any violation of these agreements may cause your site to be shut down.  Such is the case with Blogger and Type Pad.

WordPress.Org Advantages

1.  It’s free. It is a very basic shell of WordPress… which allows you the freedom to customize your blog for your particular needs and look.

2.  You may put on any theme you like.  There are hundreds of themes to chose from.  Many are free.   Pro Themes range in cost from fifty dollars to several hundred… depending upon the theme features.

3.  You may upload any plugin that is available.  There are thousands of plugins so you can customize your site to your exact needs and desires.

4.  You have complete control of the code behind your blog.  (I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been behind the scenes changing a few things around… and I’m not a tech. wizard.)

5.  Biggest plus!  You own the site and have full control!   Another company does not set rules and regulations.  You can never be shut down by not conforming to the company’s policies.

WordPress.Org Cons

1.  You will need purchase the services of a good web host.  The cost will run from about seven dollars to twelve dollars per month.  Made sure your chose a large reliable host that can handle a high volume of traffic.

(I highly recommend Hostgator or BlueHost. They are both large companies and their customer service is excellent.  (I can’t tell you how many times I’ve called customer service and had them handle a problem kindly and efficiently.  Those folks are smart)

2.  It requires more technical knowledge to set up and run.  (Once you get the swing of things… it’s a breeze.)

3.  You are responsible for stopping spam.  (There is a wonderful free plug in that handles this for you.)

4.  You have to handle your own backup.   (There is a plugin that will back up your wp blog system.  However, I recommend Mozy which backs up all of your computer files along with your WordPress blog.)  I once lost 4 years worth of artwork because I didn’t have a good backup system in place… but that a story for another time.

Which Do I Suggest?

I think it’s obvious which I prefer.  I use WordPress.Org because I have a business and want full control.

1.  As my blog grows and evolves, I want to be able to make the changes and upgrades necessary without limitations.  With the availability of plugins… that option is always open to me.

2.  I enjoy the flexibility of choosing and changing themes as I wish.

3.  Yes, there are a few costs involved… but the expenses are far below the real value.  I find the cost minimal.  All businesses have operating expenses.

4.  Setting up a WordPress.Org site is not has hard as one may think.  If you need assistance, here are many folks out there willing to help… including me.

5.  Again… because my blog is an vital part of my business, I want full control.  I don’t care to be at the effect of a company who has the option to shut down my blog… for what ever reason.

There you go… Of course you can choose which once suits your needs the best.  Which ever you choose… I have to say the WordPress is the finest blog and website platform out there.

Til Later,

Kathryn Griffiths

P.S.  If you need assistance setting up a WordPress Blog… just let me know.  I’d be glad to help!   Go to the bottom of my About page for my e-mail address.

Technorati Tags: blog, blog format, blog platform, blogging, WordPress

Categories : WordPress


  1. Jeff Wise says:

    I’m currently in the process of moving my kids exercise site over to wordpress.org. Not only that but I’m hoping to bring over my kids exercise blog too from .com and have that sitting on a static page that I can update.

    I love all of the plugins! I need to make sure I don’t go crazy and add one hundred!

  2. It is so much easier to improve your SEO ranking by using the .org. You just can not make a .com as powerful so if you are building a business it is a necessity IMHO.

  3. For the ability to create the sites you want, like ecommerce, membership and money making sites, WordPress.org can’t be beat.

    But WordPress.com is so easy to set up and use that it makes a great hub site for linking to your main WordPress.org site.

    It is possible to up grade your WordPress.com. Big sites like CNN, TedTV, Time and Flickr are on WordPress.com. They get all of their hosting and security from Automatic.

    When you think about it your WordPress.org has the same power as the Big sites. Pretty impressive.

  4. Kathryn says:

    Sheila and Mike… Thanks so much for the additional input for using both WordPress.com and WordPress.org

  5. Kathryn says:

    Yes Jeff… I have to hold myself back sometimes too. Too many plugins can sometimes make your site act buggy or weird. If your site begins acting funny… the first place to look is your plugins. I received that tip from Joseph Scott… who works for Automattic.

  6. No matter how you slice it, WP is cool!! I have used WordPress.org since the beginning of starting my online biz and have never looked back. I am a non-techie person and the ease of WP is second to none.

    You spelled out all the differences in a very concise manner. For biz owners, WordPress.org is THE way to go!

  7. Excellent post Kathy. I haven’t seen a comparison like this before. It’s really great. I know some people get confused about WordPress, with the free blog version and the self-hosted version.

    Of course the self-hosted version is much better and gives you much more control. And like Mike says, it’s great for SEO.

    Also, we’ve recently discovered that WordPress is one of the best platforms to convert to a mobile browsing version. So, two thumbs up from me. 🙂

  8. Kudos to you, Kathy! You’ve addressed an issue (and somewhat of a debate) on whether .com or .org is the best way to go in creating a WordPress site.

    Short story: I started out with a .com site and I loved it. Then I awakened one morning to find that it had been shut down. Of course, without my knowledge. No heads up. No warning. No polite little goodbye email. Nothing.

    My advice is to play it safe and get a self-hosted site that you can call your very own and have complete control over. Liked your advice, too, to consider using the .com version to direct people to your .org location.

  9. M.Waqas says:

    Nice.. Thankyou very much..

  10. I started with wordpress.com and luckily found out about the org version after I’d only done a few posts. Because I stayed with WordPress, I was able to capture my original posts when I moved over to using their program hosted on my own domain. And there are plugins that will do automatic backups as well, so no need to stay with the .com out of fear you’ll lose your info in a disaster. Thanks for the great summing up!

  11. PatrIcia Anne McGoldrick says:

    Thanks for the overview of the two WP choices.