WordPress is a fantastic blogging platform that is utilized by millions of people every day, including us at Second Self Virtual Assistance. WordPress also offers built-in Google juice as well as a large, widespread audience. So, in the battle of WordPress.com vs WordPress.org, which would you recommend?
Having a blog on WordPress.com will not cost you a dime and only takes a few seconds to create. There are 100+ themes you can choose from. You are allowed an unlimited amount of posts with 3 gigabytes of storage for images and files. WordPress.com also allows you to create your very own WordPress.com URL (such as ThinkSecondSelf.WordPress.com). Their SPAM filters stop SPAM from infiltrating your posts. They offer several widgets that you can add to your sidebar to breathe more life into your blog and are continually adding more. You can even use your WordPress.com blog as a website by adding pages.
The drawbacks on a WordPress.com site are that you are limited with a basic WordPress.com site to the themes they have on hand, just the widgets they provide and have to pay to add your own personal domain name, increase your space, remove ads from your blogs, add custom CSS or allow unlimited private users. It is only semi-customizable. Also, WordPress.com doesn't recognize all codes. For example, you cannot embed a You Tube video on your sidebar. The coding will just get erased when you save it.
A WordPress.org site is also free. They offer all the same things that the WordPress.com site does and so much more! Their software download to get started is provided absolutely free. They even provide over 100 free templates to choose from. However, unlike WordPress.com, it is completely customizable. You can choose from one of their free templates provided on their site or you can import your own template from the hundreds available online. This makes branding your site that much easier.
WordPress.org sites can be used simply as a blog (an additional tool to market yourself) or you can create a professional real estate website with your own custom URL that looks just as good as any other real estate site that can cost you hundreds of dollars a year. Since your information is stored on your hosting site (ie, GoDaddy, Blue Host, etc), you aren't limited in how much information, images, files, etc. you add. Since you are using your own URL and not one with WordPress.com attached, your Google juice flows even more. This also extends to any pages you create, which gives credibility to your site.
There are literally hundreds of plugins you can choose from to enhance your site's performance as well as your visitor's experience. Just like the iPhone, with WordPress.org, there's bound to be a plugin for that. A couple of the best tools we have found for our real estate clients are the All in One SEO plugin and the listing widgets provided by Real Bird.
The only thing that might be considered a drawback is that there is a cost to maintain a WordPress.org site. You have to have a registered domain name that you host. But, if you use someone like GoDaddy or Blue Host to host your site, they have an easy WordPress installation process, fantastic customer service and extremely reasonable pricing. So, the cost is very minimal to have a fantastic looking site.
I use several different platforms to blog from. There are things I like about all of them. However, if you are looking at WordPress.com vs WordPress.org, my money is on WordPress.org. Its versatility and the ability to completely customize makes it a great option for any real estate professional looking to create a wonderful website for much less than other programs.
If you are interested in changing to a WordPress.org site, just let me know. Our Virtual Assistant Team is always available for you. We have built several WordPress.org sites for our clients and we can do it for you, too. Some examples of our work include: