WordPress is without a doubt one of the most known and used CMS (website editor) in the world. Indeed, more than a quarter of the websites work under WordPress. However, there are actually two different versions of WordPress: WordPress.org which is the open source software and WordPress.com which is the commercial version or the turnkey solution. But let’s look in detail at the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.

WORDPRESS.COM, COMMERCIAL AND LIMITED VERSION

WordPress.com serves as both a host (your site is hosted by wordpress.com) and online publishing software. Software, site hosting and technical maintenance (installation, spam, security, upgrades, backups, etc.) are managed by the Automattic team. All you have to do is concentrate on creating the content of your page.

You can create a simple site for free (and easily) but the rest of the “premium” services offered by the platform (domain name, etc.) have the disadvantage of being quite expensive.

Technically, wordpress.com offers quality hosting with a high availability rate, even when there is heavy traffic. But you will have to pay to remove the advertising on your site. In terms of design, you have access to a hundred pre-selected themes and do not have the ability to download custom themes. You can not change the PHP code of your site, nor download plugins. WordPress.com also reserves the right to delete your blog if you do not comply with their terms of use. For a free site, your domain name should automatically be in the form: nomdemonblog.wordpress.com.

WORDPRESS.ORG, TO GO FURTHER

WordPress.org allows you to download the complete and original version of the WordPress blogging tool to install it on your own hosting (note: most web hosts offer to install it for free for you, without you having to go download the code on wordpress.org before). It’s called a “self-hosted solution,” wordpress.org provides you with the source code and you manage the rest … from hosting to the domain name.

In fact, you will need to acquire a hosting and a domain name, but once installed, you will have full control over your WordPress site. You can download custom themes, install plugins of your choice and modify the PHP code of your site. It is also possible to add third-party services such as Cloudflare, MailChimp and much more. This gives you complete control of your field. WordPress.org, however, requires more technical knowledge (you can always train if you do not have one). You are also the only one responsible for plugins and software updates.

This solution is therefore suitable for those who wish to have full control of their website.

 

WORDPRESS.COM OR WORDPRESS.ORG, WHICH ONE TO CHOOSE?

WordPress.com. It should be remembered that WordPress is a free blogging software. It can, therefore, be downloaded by everyone. With WordPress.org, you can install not only themes and plugins, but also add your own ads to generate your income. You can also modify the PHP code as well as the database that feeds your site. Although WordPress can be downloaded for free, however, it must be installed on a web server (usually paid) to work.

While this is rewarding and fun, you should not forget that managing your blog is yours now. Poor management of your server can easily lead to a partial or total loss of your blog. WordPress.org also provides free community mailing lists, downloadable software, plugins and free themes, documentation and more. You also have access to the various community support forums.

WordPress.com. As for WordPress.com, the principle is totally different. You do not need to download software, pay for hosting, or even manage a web server. All you have to do is focus on creating content with only the tools available to you. After you sign up for WordPress.com, a URL is assigned to you in the form “nomdublog.wordpress.com”. You have no control over the database or software, and FTP access is not included.

In addition, you also have the ability to download plugins or custom themes. WordPress.com provides a free unlimited storage database with backup and redundancy, multilingual administration, real-time traffic statistics, web hosting, automatic software updates, themes and more. You also have the opportunity to follow comments and participate in community support forums.

It should not be forgotten that WordPress.com is a commercial company that belongs to Automattic. The latter is managed full-time by developers, and developments sponsored by Automattic are frequently added or adapted in the WordPress software so that the entire free community can enjoy.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES FOR AN E-COMMERCE SITE?

If you want to create an e-commerce site, it should be noted that in WordPress.com, e-commerce features are only available in the “Enterprise” offer, at $ 25 per month. Even in this offer, you must use the sales system that integrates WordPress.com. This commercial version of WordPress is therefore not the appropriate solution for those who want to create an e-commerce site worthy of the name.

WordPress.org offers indeed several high-quality plugins that will allow you to transform your basic WordPress site into a real online store.

WHAT ABOUT SECURITY AND BACKUP?

Although zero risk does not exist, WordPress.com sites are secured and backed up regularly on the platform’s server. What is not the case of WordPress.org, where security and backup depend on yourself, your host, and plugins installed on the site.

In short, if you have very basic needs and want to create a simple site as soon as possible and without any complications, we recommend WordPress.com. Indeed, the creation of a website on WordPress.com can be done in just a few clicks and does not require any computer skills. However, you will quickly be very limited in terms of plugins, and you will also have a reduced choice of themes. You will not be able to touch the code of the page either … and you will have to accept the advertising banners added by WordPress.com on your site.

WordPress.org, allows you to create fully customized and tailor-made sites (including independent developers who can help you). You can also integrate many advanced features. WordPress.org, therefore, meets all needs, even the most complex. In addition, you have full control over your site. However, creating a site with WordPress.org takes longer and requires computer skills.

In the meantime, if you have created a site under WordPress.com you want to move it to your own host with WordPress.org, do not hesitate to contact us. We have years of professional experience and can help you.