News Source: crazyegg.com
4 Reasons You Should Never Use WordPress.com (And 4 Reasons You Should)
News Source/Courtesy: crazyegg.com

Courtesy/News Source: crazyegg.com

First I want to clear up the confusion between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. WordPress is WordPress right? Not really. Both are owned by Automattic, both help people build websites and blogs, but there’s some very important differences between them.

WordPress.org

WordPress.org

Firstly, there’s WordPress.org – the organization that provides you with a free, open source, downloadable version of the WordPress software. You can download and install it yourself. Also, some select hosting providers and control panels offer easy, one-click WordPress installs. WordPress partners some specific hosting providers listed here. However, if you install it yourself, it means that you and your hosting provider are responsible for your WordPress installation. It also means that you need to do backups, security updates and any upgrades that are necessary yourself. Which is totally understandable, considering it’s free and open source.

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

Then there’s WordPress.com – the commercial entity that provides you with the WordPress software as a service which is ready to use, out of the box. So, instead of installing it yourself on your own site, you just sign up at WordPress.com and start blogging. No downloading, no installing — it’s all turnkey. And, all backups, security updates and upgrades are handled for you by WordPress.com. WordPress.com is free to get started, but offers premium services for prices starting at $36/year.

However, there are a number of constraints which I outline below.

Here are some of the biggest surprises I got when working with WordPress.com.

1. You Can’t Alter Page Structure

With WordPress.com, you can change things in the body of your page (the middle part), but you don’t have direct access to the HTML source and sections of your page. You also don’t have access to the PHP files (the files that WordPress itself is made from) you would normally have access to on a self-hosted WordPress.org installation. What this also means is that you can’t add CSS or JavaScript links to your webpage as you normally would. It’s less customizable and you have less control, is what I’m trying to say.

Any JavaScript code added to the body of your page is cleanly removed when you update the page. So how can you add in that cool new JavaScript widget you use on all your other websites? You can’t. You are limited to whatever widgets WordPress.com provides you with. It’s a bummer, but from their perspective, it helps keep things secure.When it comes to displaying multiple images there are 2 options – as a slide show and as a gallery.

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