There are very popular blogging platforms available on the internet these days. However, many people get confused between the two options offered, the .com and the .org versions. This article will explain exactly what these are and how to choose the one that best suits you as a blogger.
WordPress.com is a free blog host, similar to Blogger. The website allows you to sign up for one user account and place as many blogs as you wish under this account. The basic site offers a good selection of blog themes and a handful of plugins already installed. You don’t need any technical knowledge to start a blog on WordPress.com.
WordPress.org is not a host at all, but rather the blogging platform which you can download for free and then host on your own website. This can get a bit confusing, if you aren’t very technically minded. The best way to go is to find a host such as HostGator which offers one click free installation of the WordPress platform. The platform comes with just one theme and two basic plugins.
So, how do you decide which version to use? That depends greatly on what you intend to do with your blog. If you are writing a personal blog and have no intention of trying to earn money except through the occasional affiliate link, then free platforms are the ideal options. Since they are so easy to use, it is perfect for the beginning blogger to get their feet wet.
WordPress.org, or the self-hosted platform, is far better if you actually want to monetize your blog. Whereas the free host doesn’t allow you to place AdSense or do pay per post blogging, if you are hosting your own blog, you can do whatever you want! This means you are able to load your blog with all manner of monetizing options.
Also, the free hosted version doesn’t allow customization through plugins or installation of new themes. While they offer a good variety of set themes, there are a good number of third party ones available for the self-hosted blog. There are also hundreds of free third party plugins that do everything from add sidebar widgets to help you optimize your blog for search engines.
It all comes down to the purpose of your blog. If you want full customization and the ability to place ads on your blog, you will want to host your own WordPress blog on your own host. However, if you are just fiddling around and having fun, you can go with free platforms for ease of use.