WordPress.org vs WordPress.com

Affiliate Disclaimer: Please note this post contains affiliate links. If you go through them to make a purchase, I will make a commission at no cost to you. Thanks for your support!

One of the most common questions and areas of confusion is in regards to the differences between wordpress.org vs wordpress.com. Often times, people don’t even realize that they are two different things until it’s too late. Although I believe the way to go is WordPress.org, there are reasons to using WordPress.com if that suits you and what you’re looking for. However, most often, if not always, when someone is referring to WordPress, they are referring to WordPress.org. So let’s go over the main differences between WordPress.org and WordPress.com!



WordPress.org is technically FREE! You don’t have to pay for WordPress.org. The reason I say technically, is because unless you have a self hosted server, you do have to pay a hosting provider to host your website. A hosting provider can be bluehost, flywheel, etc. You pay a monthly or yearly fee for them to host and have your website online. The prices for hosting can vary but start as low as $2.99. After that, you can install WordPress.org for free. 

Aside from price and who hosts the site, WordPress.org allows for more flexibility and freedom in terms of what extensions like plugins or themes you use. Some plugins and themes are premium & require additional fees but you can use whichever ones you’d like without any real limitations. 

WordPress.org is free & open source and currently powers 35% of all websites online. You can use it for blogs, businesses, online shops & more! 


One of the main differences between WordPress.org & WordPress.com is who is hosting the site. WordPress.com actually hosts your website (so you don’t need a hosting provider). It works similarly to Squarespace & Shopify in terms of actually hosting your & including certain features that are already built in. You also have to pay for WordPress.com and plans start at $4/month and go up to $45/month for ecommerce.

If you want to add more customization and additional plugins & even specific themes, you’ll likely need the Business plan for $25/month. Most ‘WordPress’ themes & plugins will work on WordPress.com but you should always double check and make sure you’re on the correct plan. 


Which one should you choose?

Again, like always, this is up to you and your personal needs, however I definitely always suggest WordPress.org because it provides the ulimited customizability for free. And again, when people refer to WordPress, they are more than likely talking about WordPress.org!


Hopefully this helps clarify any confusion as to which WordPress platform to choose and the key differences between WordPress.org vs WordPress.com! It’s such a common question and I definitely hope this helps you make a clearly, more informed decision!




Hey, I’m Marci

I’m the web designer & developer and the woman behind Dragonfly Ave. I love sharing resources, tutorials, biz tips and so much more. Hope you enjoy!

Browse Categories






Shop Website Templates


Pin It on Pinterest