South Metro Web Designs

WordPress vs. WordPress. What’s The Difference?

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If you’re new to the website world, maybe you’re thinking of starting a blog, or attempting to build you’re own site, you may come across WordPress.com, and WordPress.org. What’s the difference? Well, you’ve come to the right place for an answer.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is free, open-source software (a CMS, or Content Management System) owned by Automattic, Inc. 43% of the world’s websites run on it. The open-source nature of it allows third parties to create plugins that give it additional functionality. As of now, there are over 55,000 plugins available for WordPress.

The only thing anyone needs to run the WordPress software is a domain and a host. A host is an internet facing server that contains the software and all the files that make up a website. See my explanation of hosting here.

Someone could even use their own computer as a host, but that topic is best left up to network professionals, which I ain’t.

This version of WordPress is commonly referred to as “wordpress.org“.

WordPress.com

Wordspress.com isn’t WordPress. It’s a hosting platform, also owned by Automattic. On it, you run the free WordPress software, but what price level you are at determines what functionalities of WordPress you get.

Free gets you a super limited version. No plugins, and you can’t use your own domain.
$96 per year gets more functionally, but still no plugins.
$300 per year gets you the ability to install plugins
$540 per year and you get the full version of the free WordPress software.

And for that price all you get is hosting plus use of the WordPress software (which is free).

Hosting plans from other companies

Many companies offer hosting plans for less than $10 per month (we charge $8, or $79 per year). So wordpress.com is a very bad deal.

Here’s a comparison of DIY services and DIFM (Do It For Me) companies.

I hope this helps the confusion between WordPress the software, and WordPress the platform. If there are any questions, please put them in the comments.

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