Well, we all know that WordPress is the best platform out there for websites, 🙂 but not everybody knows the difference between WordPress.com and a self-hosted WordPress site. We are happy to shed some light on the differences!
What’s the difference?
There are a number of differences between WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress. Many of them really come down to preferences and I would never try to convince you one way or another. Except for when I kind of do (just ahead)…
Let’s think about it in terms of renting an apartment (for free…well, that would be nice, wouldn’t it??) vs. buying a house.
When you are renting an apartment, it is not yours. Very rarely can you paint the walls, tear down walls (if you’re me), and make it “home”. With a WordPress.com site, you are very limited in the customizations that can be done to your
home site. But it’s FREE, so yay!
With a self-hosted WordPress site, the site is all yours! The sky is the limit when it comes to customizations–you can add to it yourself or pay someone to make customizations for you. Plugins, themes, coding graphics & fun galore! An average hosting package can range from $4-$10 a month but it’s a small price to pay for all of the great features that become available to you.
Why choose WordPress.com?
- Free hosting (WordPress Premium upgrades are available)
- Very limited platform for customizations
- WordPress.com is a great option for those who are new to web publishing or have a very casual approach to blogging/their website.
Why choose a self-hosted WordPress website?
- Able to apply custom themes and plug-ins – these are some of my favorite themes ever: Studiopress!
- Access to PHP/CSS coding and customizations
- Ability to track and capture website data
- Monetization of your site
- Ability to use your domain as www.yoursite.com versus www.wordpress.yoursite.com for no additional cost
- A self-hosted WordPress website is great for bloggers and businesses who intend to be very involved with their sites and are looking for user friendly with full customization options.
What is the downside to a self-hosted WordPress website?
If you choose a self-hosted WordPress website you must purchase a domain and pay to have it hosted on a server. Two notes about this:
- Average cost of domain name AND hosting is around $50-$120 a year
- You could easily pay that much (or more) for WordPress.com upgrades
- For your convenience See My Designs by Shauna offers great, affordable hosting options! Ask about promotions for new SMD clients!
If you have additional questions in regard to WordPress.com vs a self-hosted WordPress website please comment!
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