If you have been using WordPress for some time now, you’ll find that it’s one of the easiest blogging platforms you can use. This platform is also a popular content management system for website creators due to its ease of use as well as the popularity of WordPress hosting services. If you are wondering about the differences between a free WordPress blog (also known as hosted WordPress) and one that uses paid hosting services (or self-hosted WordPress) and why you should get the latter, then you’ve come to the right place.
There are some advantages to getting a free blog instead of paid WordPress hosting services. For starters, your blog is free. You don’t have to pay for anything, such as hosting or domain name registration. Besides being free, a hosted WordPress blog is very easy to set-up. All you need to do is register your email address and create a WordPress account. After that, you can choose your subdomain and theme, and you’re good to go. Lastly, with a hosted WordPress blog, you don’t have to worry about new versions and updates. When a new version of WordPress comes out, your blog is automatically updated.
However, while a free WordPress blog does not require you to spend on anything, you can’t earn anything from it either. You cannot generate income through displaying advertisements in a hosted WordPress blog since the company controls all forms of advertising on their free blogs.
Moreover, you will have some limitations with regards to the domain name of your blog. All free WordPress blogs have domain names that look like this: “yourblogname.wordpress.com.” Besides limitations on domain names, free WordPress blogs have limited storage space. You can also choose from only a few themes. If you wish to be more creative with your domain name and your website’s design and content, then a free blog is not your best choice.
With paid WordPress hosting services, however, you can have more freedom with regards to design, content and domain names. You can have any domain name of your choosing. This is an advantage to website owners since a personalized domain name holds a lot more potential for being recognized as a brand than one that has “wordpress.com” attached at the end.
A self-hosted WordPress website also allows you to have complete control over the look and content of your site. There are no design limitations, since you can avail of numerous free, premium, and customized theme designs that are available all over the Internet. Moreover, you do not have the storage space limitations that free blogs have, so you can upload as many videos and photos that you want.
Best of all, you can use your website to earn revenue. With a paid WordPress hosting service, you can add plug-ins to your site that are useful for business, such as a shopping cart and click-throughs that help generate income. You also have control over ad placements on your website, and you can choose to display paid advertisements.
Of course, having a self-hosted website has its disadvantages. This includes the cost of web hosting as well as hassles with setting up. If you choose paid WordPress hosting, you will need to download and install WordPress. In some cases, you will have to update your version of the program yourself.
These are the most important points that would-be website owners and bloggers should consider before choosing between a hosted WordPress site or paid hosting services. If you do not plan on getting an income from your website, or if you do not need customized design, a free blog is the best choice for you. However, if you wish for more control over your website, and if you want to use it to generate income, then a paid WordPress hosting service is what you should get. Weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each, and choose what suits you best. Have fun creating your own website!
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