The Differences Between and

the differences between and via @GretLouiseThe first step to becoming savvy inside WordPress is to understand the differences between and They share the same logo, name, and many of the same features, but that’s where the similarities end.

Anyone can sign up for a free account and get a free site at Paid upgrade bundles include, custom themes, custom fonts, increased media storage, no ads, and more.

Why choose

  1. Little to no start up cost.
  2. Little to no technical skills required.
  3. No maintenance required.
  4. No security or optimization required.
  5. Great for entry-level blogging and getting your feet wet.

Why not choose

  1. You are not allowed to monetize your site through the use of ads or affiliate links.
  2. You do not have access to WordPress plugins.
  3. You have limited theme options and no custom coding ability.
  4. You are limited to 3GB media storage.
  5. Ads may be visible on your site (to viewers who are not logged in to a account of their own). requires purchase of a domain name (through a domain name registrar like NameCheap or through your host) and website hosting (through a reputable web host). Your domain name needs to point to your web host and needs to be installed on your web host.

Why choose

  1. You are free to monetize your site through ads or affiliate links.
  2. Unlimited theme, plugin, and customization options.
  3. Unlimited image and file storage (depending on your host).
  4. You have complete control over every aspect of your site.
  5. No ads will be displayed unless you choose.

Why not choose

  1. Recurring fees for domain name and hosting.
  2. Installation and customization requires some technical knowledge.
  3. Problems may require hiring technical assistance.
  4. You are responsible for your site’s maintenance and optimization.
  5. You are responsible for your site’s backups and security settings.

Got more than 5 minutes?

A free account is great for beginning bloggers. But if you have books to sell or want to monetize your site, you’ll get a better deal paying for hosting for than paying for all the custom upgrades with

Check out these links for more about the differences between and

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  1. Sooooo if I want to switch to a site then how do I do that without loosing all the work I’ve done on my site? I’d eventually love to monetise and if I can’t do that on I’m better to switch to now. I already have a domain name that I purchased really cheap from namecheap before signing up to and realised that I couldn’t use it without upgrading to a paid plan.
    I also find it annoying that I can’t access plugins on until I upgrade to a business plan ($33/month). I’m not ready to monetise, but I know I the future I do really want to, to give me some residual income/ replace it all together. Help!

    1. I haven’t checked the terms lately, but it’s possible you may be able to monetize on the Business Plan now.

      To switch from .com to .org, you’d just do an export/import of your content/images.

  2. I am so excited about this series! I have a and I did not even know there was such a thing as until I read this! I was wondering why some customizations I wanted were not available and now I know why! I can’t wait to read the rest!!

  3. I saw you tweet about this post recently and wanted to stop by. We recently switched from to, and we are glad we did so. We feel this gives us more freedom with our blog, and my husband is very technically inclined, so that is a bonus for sure. 馃檪 Thanks for this series. We’re looking forward to reading along!

  4. Hi, Gretchen,

    I blog on but am working with a designer to create a new blog that will be moved to soon – maybe by the end of October. My 31 Days series is 31 Days of Do Over, so “doing over” my blog fits right in!

    In the meantime, I am looking forward to reading your series and learning more about both .com and .org.