WordPress.com In 2018: What Do WordPress.com Client Reviews Say?

Our Verdict: #1 for Open-Source Hosting

WordPress.com , the most popular content management system in the world, now offers website hosting plans. You make any kind of website you want with its open-source website builder — including blogs, online stores, or business websites.

When you use our special WordPress.com discount links on this page, you’ll get the maximum savings on hosting plans, starting at $3 per month.

Pros:

  • Outstanding support for the WordPress app itself, not just hosting
  • Huge library of plug-ins for site enhancement
  • Helpful global community of users

Cons:

  • Free plan is limited
  • Fully managed plans are pricey

WordPress.com scores 4.5 stars out of 5 with our reviewers and gets a rating of 4+ across all of our rating subcategories — including 5 stars for quality.

Is WordPress.com the Perfect Host for Your Site?

Curious about something specific? Jump to our most popular sections:

  • Expert review — Get the straight scoop from our expert, Jon Penland.
  • Best reviews — Read 14+ reviews by WordPress.com customers.
  • Hosting plans — See which plan is best for you.
  • FAQ — Read answers to the most common questions about WordPress.com.

WordPress.com is a “one-stop shop” for people who want an easy way to create a WordPress website, publish it online, and get customer support when they need it.

I’ll tell you everything you need to know about getting started with WordPress and how WordPress.com works.

I’ll also help you decide whether a WordPress website is right for you. Let’s start with the basics.

WordPress.com Homepage

What Is WordPress?

WordPress is a free publishing platform that makes it easy for anyone to create and launch a blog, website, or online store.

It’s the most popular open source website platform in the world. Currently, 50% of the world’s top 1 million websites are built with WordPress.

What is a WordPress Website?

A WordPress website is a site created using the free WordPress publishing platform.

  • WordPress websites feature a “theme” which is a visual design. You can use a pre-built theme or create your own.

  • WordPress websites also typically use plugins. Plugins add special functionality to your website, like an event calendar, games, or marketing feature. You can add a plugin easily with a few clicks of a button.

Why Use WordPress?

WordPress is the Swiss army knife of websites: you can create almost anything with it.

  • Launch a simple blog, an artist portfolio, a business website, a journalism site, or a powerful e-commerce store.

  • You can choose from thousands of pre-designed WordPress websites (called “themes”).

  • You can pick from over 54,000 “plugins.”

  • WordPress provides a simple user-friendly interface for managing your site content.

  • Because WordPress is so popular, there are plenty of hosting options and online sources for free tutorials.

What’s the Difference Between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?

These two websites serve different purposes.

What is WordPress.com?

WordPress.com is a paid service. For a monthly fee, you get everything you need to create and launch your WordPress website plus customer support.

What’s WordPress.org?

WordPress.org is the organizational website behind the software. On this site, you can read news about WordPress, find out about community events, and learn about new features.

Continued below user reviews

WordPress.com Reviews by Our Community

Overall Rating from 15 Reviews by WordPress.com Customers

Support
Quality
Features
Value

Most Helpful Reviews

Heather Haynes avatar
Heather Haynes bellabipolar.com
Sep 12, 2018

WordPress.com is a great choice for new bloggers to be able to quickly build a simple and stylish website to get your voice out to the world. They also offer additional features and increased storage in the paid plans which come in handy for marketing your new blog. I am enjoying the ease of use and the selection of features. I look forward to upgrading to the Premium plan this month.

Visit Host Now →

Mohamed Ibrahim avatar
Mohamed Ibrahim thegenidea.ga
Apr 12, 2018

I am using WordPress for a quite a sometime. It’s easy to use for a beginner who just started their own site. It has lots of features to offer.

It’s easy to maintain once we start. One concern is the features available in the mobile and desktop apps. It doesn’t offer the same feature as in the web. Final words "Best hosting for new users."

Visit Host Now →

Alex Paing avatar
Alex Paing quincemedia.eu
Jul 23, 2018

WordPress.com absolutely good hosting with Business plan
It will alow you to add any pluggin on your website and additional themes and Html/CSS design and editing. Also it can handel high traffic and best speed. So you don’t need any expensive hosting package like dedicate server and no need to upgrade for bandwidth.

So it will safe your time and money with cheapest rate. Recormand for high traffic blog. Website speed and perfomance are absolutely well and doing great.

If you upgrade to business plan you will get unlimited storage. WordPress.com business plan allow video press with high speed. So it is sutible for blogger/photographers/video editor and more.

The next thing was
24/7 support
They will get to you within 5minute when you star chat with live support. And you can ask any question and help to build your site.They will solve any problem so it is sutible for beginner.

Visit Host Now →

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Why WordPress.com? 

WordPress.com simplifies the process of creating and launching a WordPress website.

Most important, you get WordPress experts to help you with all of your website questions and issues.

Most web hosts only offer technical support for hosting — not for your website.

Think about that. If you’re new to WordPress, how are you going to get assistance with your website?

WordPress.com Themes
WordPress.com offers a convenient way to browse themes.

What Do I Get With WordPress.com?

You’ll get a beginner-friendly way to:

  • Get a domain name

  • Create a WordPress website (instantly)

  • Select from free or paid themes (pre-built designs)

  • Add your content to the site

  • Add plugins

  • Web hosting: Launch your site live with a click.

  • Expert customer support whenever you need it.

How Does WordPress.com Work?

To get started with WordPress.com, click on the “Get Started” button on their website.

WordPress.com Get Started

Just Answer the Questions

You’ll be guided step-by-step through the process.

First, you’ll create an account by filling out your email address and creating a password.

Then, you’ll be prompted to choose what type of site you’re building. In this example, we selected “business.”

WordPress.com Business Site

Next, you’ll be prompted for more information. In our case, it’s “What does your business do?”

For this example, we said “Restaurants” and immediately got what seems to be a preview of our site, populated with related placeholder content.

WordPress.com Restaurant Site

Next, you’ll name your site. We called ours “Bistro Central.”

WordPress.com Process

Then you’ll choose a domain name for your site:

WordPress.com Domains

After that, the domain options page will give you paid and free options.

WordPress.com Options

On the next page, you’ll be prompted to pick a plan. Note: WordPress.com plans are billed annually, not monthly.

Go ahead and pick a plan. You won’t have to check out. I’ll explain below.

WordPress.com Plans

On this page, you’ll see what your plan and domain cost. You’ll also see an area to fill out your contact information before paying.

But here’s a tip: You don’t have to fill out the contact information or pay yet.

Try Before You Buy

I recommend you try out the WordPress.com interface before paying to use it. To do this, click on “My Site” in the upper left-hand corner.

You can try it out for as long as you like.

Free WordPress-com

You’ll be taken to your site dashboard.

Here you can start editing your site using the left-hand options or you can click “Visit Site” in the upper-right-hand corner to see what your site will look like when it’s live.

WordPress.com Dashboard

To start editing, simply click on “Site Pages.” We chose the home page to edit.

Click on the text and start typing.

WordPress.com editing

Getting Help is Easy

A strong plus of WordPress.com is the blue question mark in a circle in the lower right corner: this is your lifeline for help.

At any point, if you have a question, click on it to either (a) search for an answer or (b) contact the WordPress.com staff for help.

WordPress.com Customer Support

The Website Building Process: Any Negatives?

Remember that WordPress.com “asked” me what type of business site I wanted? And that I typed “restaurant” in response?

I was immediately presented with what looked like a slick restaurant template. I thought that’s what I was getting.

WordPress.com Preview

But when the process was complete, my site didn’t look anything like that:

WordPress.com Template

That’s a bit confusing. It’s true that you can customize your site to look any way you want.

Nevertheless, it seems WordPress.com lost out on a potential “wow factor” here.

A second negative was my “restaurant” home page was pre-populated with pointless generic business imagery below:

WordPress.com Generic Images

This made me wonder why the WordPress.com builder bothered to ask what type of business I was in.

While all images and text can be customized, having relevant placeholder content can give you good ideas for your site.

Video: a 12-year-old girl shares how she launched a newspaper with WordPress.com.

The Positives: User-Friendly, Convenient, Expert Customer Support

This website builder is intuitive and it takes a few minutes at most to create your basic site.

It’s convenient to be able to buy a domain name, create a site, and browse themes in on spot. (Not to mention publishing your site online.

Perhaps the biggest plus is if you do have a question, you’ve got WordPress staff there to help.

WordPress.com Personal and Business Plans

WordPress.com offers two plan categories: “Blogs and Personal Sites” and “Business Sites and Online Stores.”

The monthly prices for these are displayed on the site. Be aware, you’ll be billed annually. Calculate your “launch” costs accordingly.

Plan Name Monthly Cost Annual Cost
Blogger $3 $36
Personal $5 $60
Premium* $8 $96
Business $25 $300
E-Commerce $45 $540
*Note: The Premium plan is offered in both the “Blog and Personal Sites” and the “Business Sites and Online Stores” categories. It’s the same plan.

Making Money With Your WordPress.com Site

It takes seconds to start selling online with a simple one-click payment button. Or get a full-featured online store. Sell digital or physical products or services anywhere in the world.

If you plan to accept donations, sell products, or run ads, here’s what you need to know.

  • Monetization (running ads) is available on the Premium plan and higher

  • The Premium and Business plans support simple payments

  • Choose the E-Commerce plan if you’re selling physical products: You’ll be able to accept payments from 60+ countries; integrate your site with top shipping carriers; and you’ll get marketing tools.

What’s WooCommerce?

Be sure to familiarize yourself with WooCommerce — the most popular e-commerce plugin for WordPress. It essentially turns your site into an online store and provides everything you need to start selling.

There are many extensions you can use for WooCommerce (think of these like plugins). Some are free and some are not.

What’s VIP WordPress.com?

This service is for enterprise clients or for anyone who wants the very best.

You’ll find the link to VIP WordPress.com in the footer of the WordPress.com website.

VIP WordPress.com

Pro tip: Before buying hosting that’s advertised as fast, ask the company for some examples of websites they host. Then run those site URLs through Google Page Speed Insights.

Here are some of the VIP features:

  • Advanced security technologies

  • Code and performance checks for your site

  • Hourly backups

  • Automatic scaling (this means if you get a sudden traffic surge — say, due to an advertising campaign or media appearance — your site won’t slow down or get bumped offline).

Plugins and Themes

Much of the power of WordPress CMS — and the ability to create advanced sites with it — is provided through plugins.

Plugins are used to add special features and functionality that aren’t part of the WordPress software.

Think of them like LEGO blocks. You can snap them on in a click.

They will either modify how your site looks or what it does.

What Can I Do With Plugins?

Here are some things you can do with plugins:

  • Make your site load faster for viewers

  • Add a game — like Solitaire — to a web page

  • Add an event calendar

  • Add a newsletter sign-up form

  • Add a slideshow

  • Add a photo gallery

  • Display recipe cards with ingredients

  • Allow readers to leave comments on your blog posts

  • Add social media feeds to a web page.

Video: Example plugin — Recipe Card Blocks.

What You Need to Know About WordPress.com and Plugins

  • The two lower-tier plans at WordPress.com are limited when it comes to plugins.

  • Both come with Jetpack: a pre-installed collection of 10 popular functions that include contact forms, essential SEO, and site backups.

How Do I Get Full Access Plugins on WordPress.com?

To install any plugins other than Jetpack, you’ll need to upgrade to a WordPress.com “Business” plan for $300/year.

Themes

Each plan comes with a set of free themes you can pick from.

Many WordPress themes are not free, so keep this in mind. The theme that grabs your eye may add an additional cost to your site launch.

Video: Jordan and Joe’s Paddleboarding benefitted from translation features in WordPress.com.

What are the Pros and Cons of WordPress.com?

There are quite a few reasons to choose WordPress.com for your site.

Here are the pros that stick out:

The Pros of WordPress.com

  • Very easy to set up and manage, even if you have no technical skills.

  • Free sites are still quite powerful and have access to many themes.

  • Almost all web hosts support WordPress installations, so you’ll be able to use other hosts with no trouble.

  • Access to WordPress experts who can help you with technical details of your site.

A Few Cons

But there are a few cons as well:

  • The free plan is limited. While the business plan gives you a comparable feature set to a self-hosted plan, it’s expensive.

  • You have no direct access to your database or site files, which limits the flexibility you have when migrating and customizing your site.

Video: typical WordPress.com tutorial.

Alternatives: What’s Self-Hosted WordPress?

If you don’t use WordPress.com you’ll need to “self-host” your WordPress website.

This awkward phrase just means you need to:

  • Select a web host first.

  • Then create and launch your site from within your hosting account.

How Does Self-Hosted WordPress Work?

Here’s how it typically works:

  1. Choose a web host — preferably one that offers “one-click installs” of WordPress. (A one-click install of WordPress means you can launch a basic WordPress website with a single click.)

  2. Sign up for a web hosting account.

  3. Log in to your hosting dashboard (called a “control panel”).

  4. Follow the instructions to launch a WordPress site using the “one-click install.”

  5. Select a theme (visual design).

  6. Add any plugins you want.

  7. Pick a domain name.

  8. Follow the instructions to launch your site online.

Pro tip: If you are migrating from one host to another, be sure to find out if the new host covers the cost of site migration.

My Recommendations for Web Hosts

Stick with a web host known for their WordPress expertise.

The difference is their technology platform will be optimized for WordPress. That means faster speeds and better reliability.

Choose a web host with WordPress experts on staff and high customer satisfaction ratings.

Here are some for you to explore.

SiteGround and Bluehost

SiteGround and Bluehost are known for their low-cost hosting and WordPress expertise.

SiteGround is known for their performance, security, and quality customer service.

Bluehost is known for its easy-to-use dashboard, beginner-friendly approach, and their video tutorials for WordPress users.

SiteGround is more a creative boutique company; Bluehost is more of a big box brand.

Both companies are involved with WordPress events and initiatives. And both deliver approximately the same website loading speeds.

WP Engine and Liquid Web

WP Engine is the top managed WordPress hosting company in the world. They are a good choice for small businesses and enterprises alike

Liquid Web provides great WordPress hosting and have more hosting options.

You’ll get top speeds with either host and perks like automatic WordPress software updates.

How to Choose: Some Guidelines

Everyone considering creating a WordPress website needs to know that even though the basic or “core” software is free, there are other costs.

Cost of Launching a WordPress Website

These are some of the costs you’ll need to factor in when setting a budget for your WordPress website:

  • Cost of a domain

  • Hosting (and related items like an SSL certificate for security or dedicated IP address for better performance)

  • Plugins: some are free, some charge a monthly fee

  • Themes: some are free, some are not.

Also, consider maintenance and technical assistance. If you’re stuck at some point during the creation of your site or something “breaks” who will help you?

It’s reasonable to expect to spend between $100 – $350 creating and launching your WordPress website. The more plugins you use the higher your cost will likely be.

Those launching simple blogs with little functionality can do so for under $50.

Maintaining Your Site

Some web hosts will keep your WordPress core updated for you.

Free help from a friend who knows WordPress probably will only work short-term. Why? Because, long-term, one individual needs to be responsible for the website.

Part of this responsibility includes keeping your plugins, themes, and WordPress core software updated.

This is easy: it takes a click of a button for each. But if you fail to keep up with updates your site will be at serious risk of being hacked.

Choosing a web host who will keep your WordPress core automatically updated for you can help. (Keeping plugins and themes updated will still be your responsibility.)

Getting Help With Your WordPress Website

Unless you’re a WordPress expert you should be asking this question.

If you don’t choose WordPress.com, there is a way you can go the “self-hosted” route and still get technical help with your website.

WP Live: A Paid Service

You can use a third-party service called “WP Live.” (Search Google for “MOJO Marketplace WP Live.”)

For a monthly fee, you can get assistance for anything related to your website, whether you have a plugin conflict or need marketing advice.

WP Live Homepage

Since there’s no contract required, you can use this service when you need it and cancel it when you don’t.

Some web hosts like Domain.com highlight the benefits of WP Live and provide a convenient link to sign up. But, as we said, you can use any web host and still use WP Live.

Video: WP Live

Migrate From WordPress.com to Another Host

Yes, you can start your site on WordPress.com and then move to another host later.

DIY or Pay For Migration?

From within your WordPress.com dashboard, you’ll be able to choose either a DIY export or a paid transfer executed for you by WordPress.com technical staff.

DIY With the Export Tool

Under the “Tools” menu option in your WordPress.com backend, there’s an option called “Export”.

This will let you export your site’s content, and then you can import it into any other self-hosted WordPress site that you create on a web host that supports WordPress.

WordPress.com Summary

Who is WordPress.com Right For?

WordPress.com is a good choice for those who want to get online fast with the world’s most popular open source platform.

Easy access to expert WordPress support will provide peace of mind to beginners and busy entrepreneurs alike.

Those who want the ability to add any plugins, but who don’t want to pay $300 up front for the Business plan, should explore our recommended web hosts.

But if they sound like a good fit for you, head over to WordPress.com now.

Contributing authors: Katie Horne, Dale Cudmore. Contributing editors: Sherrie Gossett , Natalie Mootz.

Plan Disk Space Bandwidth Price
Business
Shared
Unlimited Unlimited $24.92 / mo Visit Host Now
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WordPress.com Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the difference between WordPress and a website?

    A website is a set of files accessible using the internet. WordPress is a content management system (CMS), which means that it’s a piece of software that comes with everything you need to create content, upload images, and manage all of your work without requiring you to write code. You can use WordPress to create new websites.

  • How can I learn WordPress for free?

    WordPress offers a robust set of documentation that includes things on how to get started, installing WordPress and basic usage. Once you’ve completed these steps, we recommend running Google searches for how-to tutorials (eg, “How to change my WordPress theme”). WordPress is one of the most popular CMSs, so there are lots of well-written tutorials available for free.

  • How much is WordPress? Can I use WordPress for free?

    WordPress is available free of charge! However, to serve your content to the internet, you’ll need to purchase web hosting. We’d also recommend getting a custom domain name for your website. If all of this sounds daunting, however, WordPress’ parent company, Automattic, offers a WordPress.com which operates on a subscription model.

  • Where can I find free WordPress themes?

    The best place to find free themes is the WordPress Theme Directory. These are options that have been vetted by WordPress’ theme review team to make sure that they meet the predetermined guidelines. There are other websites that might offer free WordPress themes (you can find these via Google), but there’s no guarantee these are safe.

  • What are 3 reasons to use WordPress for my website?

    First, WordPress is open source and free to use. Second, WordPress is one of the most commonly-used CMSs, which means that there’s a robust community on the internet offering advice and ideas, creating and sharing themes and plugins, and more. Finally, WordPress is almost infinitely customizable, so you can create whatever site you want.

  • Do I need a hosting site for WordPress?

    It depends. If you use the self-hosted WordPress option (available at WordPress.org), then you need to purchase web hosting. However, if you choose the hosted version of WordPress (which is available at WordPress.com), your purchase comes with web hosting, and you do not need to make an additional purchase.

  • Can you make money on WordPress.com?

    Making money on WordPress.com is an option. There are many ways you can monetize your WordPress site. You can display banner ads, use affiliate links (so that you earn a commission any time a user uses your custom link to get to an online store where they then make a purchase), write sponsored posts, and more.

  • Does WordPress include hosting?

    If you opt for the self-hosted version of WordPress (which is available via WordPress.org), you will need to purchase your own web hosting. However, if you choose the hosted version of WordPress (which is available via WordPress.com), your purchase comes with everything you need — you do not need a separate hosting package.

  • Is WordPress free with Bluehost?

    WordPress is free to use if you purchase hosting with Bluehost, but this isn’t a unique offering from Bluehost. Anyone can use WordPress for free and host it with the company of their choice. Bluehost is one of the hosting companies recommended by Automattic, WordPress’ parent company, but you can work with any company whose packages meet WordPress’ technical specifications.

  • Is WordPress or Weebly better?

    WordPress is more powerful than Weebly, since you can customize your site with a large number of themes and plugins available. However, this also means that WordPress is harder to use. Weebly is slightly easier to use, and its core functionality is comparable to what WordPress offers. Both can be used to create beautiful websites.

Jon Penland

About Jon Penland

Jon has worked in many capacities in the high tech world, including engineering and development. He's written many articles for WhoIsHostingThis.com, including expert reviews of web hosts, programming resource guides, and even front-end development tutorials. He lives in Georgia with his wife and five children.

Connect with Jon

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