If you are serious about your business – Don’t use a ‘Free’ WordPress.com Website!

So you’ have decided to develop your website using WordPress – this is a great decision! WordPress is a fantastic solution for website development since it is ‘open source’ and comes with all kinds of features that would normally cost thousands of dollars to build from scratch. But unknowingly you have gone over to the free offering at wordpress.com

You’re exited about the possibilities but as you are going through the setup process, you start to notice some of the details that are not quite what you were expecting. For example, your website address is going to be mywebsite.wordpress.com instead of just mywebsite.com (where mywebsite.com is the domain that you purchased or want to purchase for your website). Then you see that sure you can use mywebsite.com BUT only if you pay an extra – $12.00/month (billed yearly). Hmm maybe you should just go to your local website hosting & development company (Barrie Web) and pay them? You might as well support local business right and Barrie Web will give you superior technical support?

So what is going on?
We are going to discuss the key differences between WordPress.com and Self-Hosted WordPress with Barrie Web. We’re also going to show you why Self-Hosted with Barrie Web is your best choice for setting up your WordPress website.

How is Self-Hosted with Barrie Web Different from WordPress.com?
The biggest and most important difference between Self-Hosted WordPress with Barrie Web and WordPress.com is the ability to customize just about anything. Self-Hosted with Barrie Web gives you total control, but WordPress.com does not. Period.

What is Self-Hosted with Barrie Web?
Self-Hosted with Barrie Web allows you to use the original, customizable content management system (CMS) itself. We do the initial WordPress install for you and then you go from there (with our support). Usually when people say they have created their website “using WordPress”, they are usually referring to Self-Hosted (with Barrie Web).
Since the WordPress CMS exists in your own hosting account, you are free to customize it as much as you want. You can install any theme you want (free or paid themes are available), install any plugin you want (free or paid options as well), and customizing any code.

What is WordPress.com?
WordPress.com exists on WordPress.com servers and nowhere else. You do not control the server or the hosting. This is why you cannot customize a WordPress.com website beyond choosing from a selection of free themes.
This is also the reason why WordPress.com websites contain advertising and exist on what is known as a “subdomain”. For example, mywebsite.wordpress.com
WordPress.com does offer a premium package that starts at $12.00/month (billed yearly). The premium package includes some features that make it a little more customizable, but nowhere near the level of a Self-Hosted WordPress website hosted with Barrie Web.

Top 5 Reasons to choose Self-Hosted WordPress with Barrie Web instead of WordPress.com:
There are many reasons why we strongly recommend building your own Self-Hosted WordPress website with Barrie Web and not using a WordPress.com blog:

1. Complete Theme & Plugin Control
You can use and customize any WordPress themes and plugins you like. You can install free themes and plugins or use paid premium themes and plugins. Then you are free to modify and customize those themes and plugins in any way you like.
With WordPress.com you are limited to only a select set of free WordPress themes. You are not allowed to modify any fonts, colors, styles, or layouts on your website.
Once you have your Self-Hosted WordPress website with Barrie Web set up, you can use any of these premium WordPress theme creators:

    • ThemeForest — The largest selection of premium WordPress themes!
    • Elegant Themes — 87 beautiful, premium WordPress themes for only $89!

2. Marketing Control
No matter what kind of website you plan to build, you are going to want to market your website somehow to grow your business, website traffic, audience, customer base, etc.
Marketing your website may include a sign-up form or newsletter or account creation capabilities to allow people to purchase your products.
With a Self-Hosted website with Barrie Web all of these options are available to you inside the theme features and plugins. With a free WordPress.com website, you are limited to a small blog subscription or contact form.

3. Size & Speed
By building your own Self-Hosted WordPress website with Barrie Web, you get the best web hosting for you. The right amount of space, fast servers (website speed is important for SEO), options for how you want to handle your email, and security options.

4. SEO
As we mentioned earlier, using WordPress.com’s free website option means your website is going to be on a subdomain like mywebsite.wordpress.com rather than your own primary domain such as yourwebsite.com. This is not good for SEO.

Statistics show that subdomains and free website platforms do not perform as well as primary domains. Think about your own experience using Google; when is the last time you saw a subdomain ranking on page 1 for any keyword compared to a primary domain? It’s true that a free website using a subdomain with wordpress.com  does drive traffic to a website because of the exposure the wordpress.com domain brings, BUT it is rare that a subdomain ever out-ranks a primary domain website.

Additionally, a self-hosted WordPress website can be fully customized. You can implement SEO optimizations on every single page of your website to make it more effective with search engines for the keywords that you want to rank higher. With a free WordPress.com website, you are not able to optimize at this higher level.

5. Make Money with Advertising on Your Website
You are not allowed to place any advertising on your website with the free WordPress.com until you reach 25,000 page views per month. And then you are limited to using the WordPress Ad Control feature, which has very few options and has very little control of the advertising that is shown on your website.
With a self-hosted website you can advertise however you want. You can use Google AdSense ads or any other type of advertising anywhere on your website that you want. Being able to implement advertising can offset hosting and domain costs and make your website more profitable.

When you are Serious about your Business Success – Choose Self-Hosted
There are a couple of things to remember and be aware of when deciding to self-host your WordPress website:

1. Investing in your website: If you are serious about your business and have a real desire to be successful, then doing it right (with a self-hosted website with Barrie Web) is the best place to start. The costs for your domain, web hosting, email (which often comes with your hosting), SEO, SMO or other marketing have all become so much more affordable than it used to cost to start up and successfully market your business. All of these services are very affordable, so do it right and play to win. Often the true cost of using a free service is the amount of business that you didn’t get because of it. Barrie Web can help in all these areas to better insure that your business has the highest chance of success.

2. Development may be needed: You can choose from many amazing themes and plugins on a self-hosted WordPress website, but customization may also be needed. This is another area where Barrie Web can help. If you are not comfortable working with PHP or CSS, you may need to consider budgeting for Barrie Web to develop your website and take it to the level you are aiming for. The costs to fully develop your WordPress website are very affordable and the return on investment (ROI) is very high.

We sincerely hope this post has shown you why a self-hosted WordPress website with Barrie Web is your better business choice than a free WordPress.com website. If you are interested in having Barrie Web develop your WordPress website or you are interested in creating your own WordPress website, please contact Barrie Web to learn how to purchase your own domain, hosting, how to monetize your website, and anything else you would like to know about WordPress. We are here to help – Consultations are always Free!