WordPress Growth Rocks

TechCrunch calls the growth of the WordPress blogging platform, as announced today at WordCamp, “Awesome.”

It doesn’t surprise me at all that U.S. unique visitors to WordPress.com have roughly tripled in the last year to 20.9 million per month, while Typepad.com has only increased about 20 percent to 7.2 million. The two platforms were roughly equal a year ago.

But what wasn’t equal was the value proposition. WordPress.com offers 3 gigabytes of free storage and unlimited bandwidth, and for $45 a year you can customize the CSS, buy an extra 5 gigs of storage (and the ability to upload mp3 files so you can host podcasts), and map your blog to a domain or subdomain of your choosing.

You’d have to spend at least $299 a year on Typepad.com for anything approaching this functionality. And the cheapest, entry-level package price on Typepad.com is $49.50 a year.

With Typepad you can get a two-week free trial, but with WordPress.com you can blog for free almost indefinitely. And even with upgrades that would give most people as much functionality and capacity as they could possibly need, the cost for WordPress.com is still less that that for the stripped-down version of Typepad.

It all adds up to powerful incentives for new bloggers to start with WordPress.com, because all it costs them is their time to learn.

And that doesn’t even take into account the free, open source WordPress.org software you can download and install on another server for even more functionality.

Ben Martin agrees.

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Author: Lee Aase

Husband of one, father of six, grandfather of 15. Chancellor Emeritus, SMUG. Emeritus staff of Mayo Clinic. Founder of HELPcare and Administrator for HELPcare Clinic.

0 thoughts on “WordPress Growth Rocks”

  1. Just for the record, the CSS Upgrade alone costs only $15/yr, not $45. On a second note, TypePad’s themes are a lot more customizable than WordPress’ themes, even without CSS. That said, the overall functionality of WordPress far outstrips TypePad, and the cost of WordPress is indeed a fraction of the cost of TypePad. If only WordPress would allow me to opt out of them running Google Ads on my blog…

  2. Yes…good points. CSS is $15, Domain mapping $10, and 5 GB upgrade $20. I was just making the point that if you throw that all together you have just about any blog functionality you need (although WordPress.com does have some limits on the kinds of video players you can use) and you’d still be spending less than the minimum package for Typepad.

    Thanks for the comment and clarification.

  3. Lee:
    I have started a private blog on WordPress and am finding some interesting quirks there versus a public blog. Still, I think WordPress is a very robust platform for blogging.

  4. What? No mention of Blogger?

    Personally I’ve found WordPress counter-intuitive, as if it was designed by computer geeks, for computer geeks. They need to do some focus group testing! Blogger provided a shorter learning curve and more natural composition.

    But they’re probably not paying you off to write about them like WordPress is.

  5. Monica: Please note that there is an opportunity for you to serve as a visiting professor and write the Blogging 106 post on Blogger pros & cons. I just haven’t found time to do it myself; there’s a limit to how much I want to explore a platform I’m not going to use. I looked at it enough to know it wasn’t going to have what I needed.

    And you really should avoid making completely unsubstantiated charges about blogger payola. I receive nothing from WordPress.com except fantastic service at a ridiculously low price, which is exactly what is available to every other user.

    If you want to be the visiting professor for Blogging 106, I’d be delighted to have your contribution. You could just e-mail the text to me and I’ll post it for you and give you the credit. Or if you want to write it on your Blogger-based blog, I’ll be happy to link to it.

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