For many newbies to domain names and web hosting, there’s a lot of confusion when it comes to WordPress. First of all, there are actually two distinct versions of WordPress: WordPress.COM and WordPress.ORG.
The .org is a self-hosted version, meaning you have to download it and install it. The .com is hosted on WordPress servers. In total, more than 74.6 million websites (as of February of 2014) are dependent on WordPress.
Pros and Cons of WordPress.com
The dot com version of WordPress is a favorite of bloggers who don’t really have the budget to splurge on a website. If you just want a blogging platform without the fees or fuss, then WordPress.com is for you.
With WordPress.com, your blogging website is hosted on WordPress servers. You’re then assigned a subdomain website (yourname.wordpress.com, for example). You will have a very basic website where you can create your blog posts.
About half (almost 37 million) of WordPress websites are on WordPress.com. The main benefit of the dotcom version is that it’s absolutely free of charge. If you just want a simple blog without having to invest your hard-earned money, this is the way to go.
It’s also very easy to set up and use. For newbies, this lack of complications is a welcome relief. Of course, since it’s free you don’t get a lot of the fantastic features that WordPress offers its other customers.
The most notable feature you’ll miss will be the lack of support for plugins, which is the most crucial feature WordPress has to offer. In addition, your free site will be ad-supported so random ads will appear on your blog.
Check out an example of a WordPress.com blog, https://hostingkingdom.wordpress.com/
Pros and Cons of WordPress.org
The dot org version of WordPress is essentially a software platform that acts as a content management system. It allows you to manage and maintain your website, even without a website developer. If you want to see an example of a WordPress.org blog then you’re looking at one, Hosting Kingdom’s blog is a self-hosted WordPress blog.
With WordPress.org, you will need to find a web hosting company such as Bluehost.com that can accommodate WordPress. Your hosting plan will need MySQL and PHP. You have to install the WordPress program yourself. You’ll also have to register your own domain name. Your web hosting company can help with this, but not WordPress itself.
You’ll have to pay for web hosting and domain name registration. But you will have full access to all WordPress features, and you can offset the cost by enabling ads on your website for a fee.
There are very good reasons why so many people favor WordPress above all other CMS options. Keep in mind that WordPress accounts for about 18.9% of all websites, which is staggering when you take into account that more than 70% of all websites don’t even use CMS.
So what’s so special about WordPress? Foremost among WordPress qualities is that it is very powerful yet easy to use. You essentially gain the ability to manage your website without having to consult a website developer.
The WordPress core offers a lot of features already, but you can still extend the functionality considerably. There are so many themes you can choose from, and you can find one that fits your purpose. Then there is a myriad of options when it comes to plugins, which will provide supplementary functions you may want for your website.
By joining the WordPress community, you can be sure that, like millions of others, you can find just about everything you need for your website.