WordPress.com serves to be one of the best blogging platforms for sharing information about your website, its products, and services over the web. But, on the other side, it does have lots of limitations too. Once you’ve decided to develop your business and take it to the next level to make more money, that’s when you could better move into a self-hosted website (WordPress.org) rather than sticking back into WordPress.com.
Hosted WordPress (WordPress.com) is similar to staying in a rented house. Of course, you have so many favors like someone else looking into plumbing works, electricity, or any other maintenance. But, if you feel like changing the bedroom color and paint it, can you do? No. This is how it works in WordPress.com too.
On the other hand, a self-hosted website is similar to having your own space or house. You can have an outdoor spa or a swimming pool or even a kennel for your dog, totally according to your own taste and satisfaction. Doesn’t it sound so good? Same is the case with a self – hosted website for your business where you can customize your website exactly in accordance with your customers’ needs and your wish and have full control over it.
Just have a look at ten main reasons why you can opt to move from WordPress.com to a self – hosted website.
1. You Need Advertising For Your Website
With WordPress.com, you can never be allowed to run your own ads in your website. Rather it adds its ads in your site, which is not going to get you anything fruitful. You got to pay $30 per year, in order to remove their ads completely.
But still, there’s no possibility even through ad plugins or embedded codes to integrate your ads in WordPress.com. Also, WordPress.com doesn’t allow third-party advertising networks or image ads like Google AdSense, BuySellAds or OpenX, which limits potential revenue that can be gained through your website.
So, with the powerlessness to add your ad in your own website, it’s better to switch to a self – hosted website than staying back at WordPress.com.
2. You Can Use Your Own Personalised Domain Name
Your website’s domain name is something which first catches the eye of your potential customer. It’s not going to be catchy if your domain is too long with someone else’s brand attached to it, like x. WordPress.com. It’s your website and it’s always essential that it holds a unique domain name for it. With WordPress.com this is impossible.
With a self – hosted website, you can have your own unique domain name. And if needed, you can even connect it to your blog for free. Though WordPress.com too offers custom domain upgrade services, you have to spend some handful of bucks like $13 per year – ever year – to enjoy the privilege.
It’s better off to move into a self-hosted website with your own personalized domain name, thus gaining a unique identity for your business.
3. You Can Install Third – Party Plugins
Third – party plugins have always proven to be the best tools in inserting additional functionality to your website. With WordPress.com you’re just forced to execute functionalities in your website with the standard implementation that it provides. This is because WordPress.com doesn’t allow you to add third-party plugins into your blog or website.
But when you move into taking up a self – hosted website, you can have access to a number of third-party plugins offering you different features for your website. Some examples of the functionalities offered by installing third-party plugins in your self – hosted website are as follows.
- Adding a nice drop-down banner at the top of your website. It can be for any promotional offers or ads that you can use in your page.
- Improving the user experience of your blog by decreasing the download time of your images or themes and by optimizing the performance of your server.
- Optimizing your WordPress blog for search engines (SEO). This can be done by customizing the metadata for each post.
Similar to these functionalities, there are a lot of other features that you can embed by getting into a self – hosted website than WordPress.com
4. You Can Customize And Modify The Code
As a business owner, you’ll need to make constant changes and improvements in your website in order to keep it ‘live’ and dynamic. For this, you need to have considerable control over the code of your website to do instant changes in your website. WordPress.com doesn’t allow you to make free changes in its code which may become frustrating for you at times.
The best option is to get a self – hosted website so that you can simply modify the site’s style.css file and adjusts the spaces between the bulleted texts; and move the date of the post from the top to bottom by just modifying the single .php file. On the contrary, with WordPress.com, you cannot modify the CSS. It can be done only with a $30 per year upgrade and PHP files cannot be modified at all here.
Again, this justifies that you can freely use your website only when you opt for a self – hosted one.
5. You Can Setup a Web Store
As you move up on the ladder of business development, you’ll require selling your products online on your web platform itself to gain potential customers on the spot. But with WordPress .com, your desire will remain a daydream as there’s no opportunity for selling here.
Either selling ads or setting up a web store, both becomes possible only when you own a self – hosted website of yours. Only with your own self – hosted website you can sell your products online and monetize your site, which will yield surplus income for your business. Till date, WordPress.com doesn’t provide any e-commerce solutions.
6. You Own And Control Your Home Base
Ownership and control are two important aspects that you’d expect to have as an owner of a business. So, your website also has to be a ‘home base’, a place online you can own and control. This is unlike an ‘embassy’ similar to WordPress.com where you can just have your credentials and presence, but no ownership or control.
A self-hosted website is a perfect ‘home base’ for your website where you can own and control your business. Rather, WordPress.com may prove ideal for an initial – level blogger, but not for a business owner or pro who wishes to generate lucrative earnings from their website. You won’t have any control over your website.
7. You Can Access More Themes
Themes of different styles and designs are inevitable when creating your website. Only when you have access to a number of themes and styles, it’d be convenient for branding your website uniquely in the web world.
WordPress.com is very selective and limited in providing the number of themes you can install from it. Now it’s around 146 free themes and 55 premium themes (costing you approximately $55) that’s offered by WordPress.com
This number is less compared to the innumerable numbers of free and premium themes you can get if you switch on to your own self – hosted website. Yes! With a self – hosted website your options are wide and you can just personally brand your website within minutes using the premium themes you get there.
8. You Need To Have A Growing E-Mail Subscriber List
Being the owner of a small business website, you’d surely be concentrating on sending frequent emails to your target audience for gaining a good amount of leads for your business. WordPress.com doesn’t seem to provide enough features for email marketing. Getting an ample amount of subscribers is essential to make your readers of your mail come and visit your website.
WordPress.com renders a very limited simple email subscription feature. It doesn’t provide you enough space for personalizing your e-mail design and sign up forms. There’s no provision for even embedding a sign-up form like Mailchimp which is a big drawback for growing businesses.
Moving to a self-hosted website can make you gain an appreciable amount of subscribers as it’s easy to maintain an email list and also embed signup forms like MailChimp to send your promotional emails and newsletters.
9. You Can Have Analytics And Optimization Tools
Owning a small business website, you’d always have the urge to keep track of the analytics of your website. You’d wish to know the number of visitors to your website, the number of clicks per minute, an origin of your website viewers, the most focused reading content in your website, and so on.
WordPress.com does provide this stats feature, but it does not support third-party analytics such as Google Analytics which is crucial. When you upgrade to a self – hosted website, you can get these options successfully done by installing conversion optimization and A/B testing services.
10. You Want To Experiment And Tinker Your Site
Apart from seriously using the website for all revenue – generating purposes, you may also want to experiment and have fun with your website to try out how things work. Every now and then, you may develop an interest in tinkering your site as it’s your own property.
But, unfortunately, WordPress.com is not a place for you to learn things on your own and test things more like a self-hosted website. A self – hosted website becomes a great platform to tinker because it provides license and encourages a huge community of users who can learn from each other, help each other and create new themes and designs for the website platform. It helps you connect with this community through numerous official event, Facebook groups and official forums all over the globe.
So, if you’re a business website owner who’s enthusiastic enough to learn new skills and experiment around with your website, then opting to a self-hosted website is the best choice for you.