WordPress.com vs. WordPress.org – Forbes Advisor

Cost and domain names

WordPress.com is free for most users, but for advanced features you must use a paid plan. These start at $7 per month and go up to $59 per month. While the free version comes with a custom subdomain (such as mysitehere.wordpress.com), you have to pay for a domain name if you want full customization (mysitehere.com). With WordPress.org, most hosting companies provide a free, custom domain name for the first year.

Monetization and rights

You could say that WordPress.com offers enough monetization options, but there is a stark difference from WordPress.org in advertising options. With .com, you can only use WordAds, which is the official WordPress ad network. A self-hosted account allows any ad network, such as Google AdSense, Mediavine, or AdThrive.

For bloggers in particular, you need to have a self-hosted blog through WordPress.org if you want to make money blogging. Indeed, the vast majority of influencer networks require you to self-host so that you own the content you produce without giving WordPress the general right to use your content as it sees fit.

Similarly, let’s say you want to publish a book the traditional way, and you build your audience through a blog (or website) by sharing excerpts from your book. Whether you use .com or .org, a traditional publisher won’t take any content you’ve published online. This is because you have already “published” the content, even if it was just your own website.

Google Analytics is the tool used to measure site traffic, and you can install it on a self-hosted site. If you want the option for your WordPress.com site, you must purchase a Premium plan or higher. Most influencer networks and brands require a blogger or influencer to have Google Analytics installed on their site.

If you don’t need advanced customization or monetization tools and are fine with display ads, you can use WordPress.com. An example is someone keeping an online diary of a family member’s health updates; you don’t plan on making any money from it, and you just need a place to share updates with friends and family.


The amount of backup and storage available at WordPress.com depends on the plan you choose. The free plans get 3GB, and with its paid plans, you can have up to 200GB of storage. For WordPress.org, the amount of storage available depends on your host company’s plan. Many offer unlimited storage, especially with higher tier plans.


WordPress.com offers an e-commerce option for $59 per month, so users can accept payments in over 60 countries, integrate with shipping carriers, and have better design options. With plugins, WordPress.org users can integrate their site with e-commerce solutions, as well as choose the themes best suited for selling online.

Comments are closed.