One of the biggest sources of confusion for newcomers to the world of WordPress is the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com.
WordPress.org is the owner and author of the software that is known as WordPress. WordPress.org is the official site of this software and a repository for the latest operating system updates as well as themes, plugins, and documentation.
WordPress.com, on the other hand, is a completely separate business that offers blog hosting using the WordPress software. WordPress.com offers free web hosting and content management services, but this comes with several limitations.
A website hosted on WordPress.com is restricted from using custom themes. You also cannot add, delete, or modify any plugins.
If you want to earn money on your blog, your only option is to run ads delivered by WordPress.com as other popular ad networks like Google Adsense are forbidden. You also cannot sell links, review products, or write/sell paid posts. If your WordPress.com site has enough activity and meets certain parameters, you can get approved for the company’s WordAds program that involves sharing ad revenue between you and WordPress.com.
WordPress.com is the best way to start if you’re new to the world of WordPress as hosting is free and there’s nothing to set up or install.