WordPress.com or WordPress.org, Which One Does Your Business Need?
Someone tells someone else, “You should use WordPress!“ because it’s the best solution for a business marketer. What is routinely confused by end-users is not only that there are two versions, but what the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org actually is. Typically they had no idea what exactly there is … and why would they?
By Googling “WordPress” one will return both WordPress.com and WordPress.org in their top results. So one must wonder, is it the same thing OR are there important differences my company should understand?
WordPress.org is free open-source website software that anyone can download and install on their web server. It’s mostly because serious marketers will inevitably want or need customization in design, development, and ongoing support. There is no standard paid support for hosting services inherent to the .org site. It is maintained by the WordPress open source community, with a very organized talented group of “core contributors” who decide what makes the cut for new updates; when to release updates & upgrades, etc. It’s fairly meritocratic in that no one is paid to do the management or development. In fact, hundreds of volunteers contribute code, offer free support in forums, produce themes, and add-on plugin applications. It is the SaaS (e.g. Software as a Service) model, and most of a developer’s day job includes managing and customizing WordPress for the commercial world.
Be assured: ‘the power of many’ is at work here! There is a common interest in the core software being ‘best in class’ for business owners who need a great website. ‘Open source’ software, managed to the degree WordPress.org is, has proven to be the best option for those interested in controlling their assets and their brand. Skeptical? Consider that having world-class open-source website software affords many a great opportunity to develop compatible plugin application and theme options. For instance, the no. 1 e-commerce application in the world (Woo Commerce) is a plugin application for WordPress.
WordPress.com does offer a free version of their website product. It was originally a basic blog with a WordPress.com URL (i.e. biz.wordpress.com), albeit it has also evolved over the years to a full-fledged website solution. Free usually means some compromise, for instance, some limitations in terms of what can and cannot be customized. Advertising running on those website pages is standard as well. The platform is offered by a company (i.e. Automattic Inc.) started by one of the original developers of the WordPress open source project. Automattic is a business; they charge for additional services and extended support. They also employ some server-level customization to accommodate the fact they have 76.5 million users running websites spread out over 1000’s of servers across the world. They can offer some services and they develop their own custom features; however, at its core, .com is still running the same software that is freely available for download from WordpPress.org.
Kinetic Knowledge Services WordPress
Here at Kinetic, we use the open-source WordPress.org software to build and also webmaster host & manage many client websites. We manage our own servers, tuned specifically for WordPress.org software in order to maximize performance and the visitor experience of our clients. We can support virtually any client need with a seasoned/security and performance vetted application from the community.
Ultimately what this all means is that yes, you can get a free website at WordPress.com. If using a subdomain URL (BUSINESS.wordpress.com) and other business advertising on your website is OK. Or you can download WordPress.org software. In this case, it does not necessarily mean you have a free website unless you are fully capable of all that it entails; however, using WordPress.org can not only reduce cost, but it places its’ user in control as the owner! Kinetic Knowledge can help with the heavy lifting, leaving you to focus on your core business.
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