Some questions about free plugins and WordPress.com\org interoperability from a neophyte

Hi! I’m starting a blog on [Wordpress.com](https://Wordpress.com), but I’m also considering switching to [Wordpress.org](https://Wordpress.org) with a registered domain later on, once I get more familiar with WordPress itself.

While writing blog posts is very easy due to the many tutorials detailing the block system, I admit I’m really overwhelmed by the amount of different plugins, especially since I can’t easily visualize them beforehand, and I haven’t been able to choose which ones to use for the (rather basic) functions I would like to have.

To keep it short, I would love to find:

1. A sidebar plugin that I can easily customize in order to add links to the last 10 or so published articles, plus a drop menu featuring the main categories of posts, so that readers can navigate the blog finding similar contents.
2. A good and unobtrusive search bar that can find titles, keywords and possibly words in the posts themselves.
3. A top bar, or button, to easily return to the blog’s home page.
4. A basic social media widget that users can use to share my posts, possibly one that is automatically added to each post without having to manually add it every time.

The plugins I’m searching for would have to be free, fairly easy to use and ensure full interoperability between the [Wordpress.com](https://Wordpress.com) and [Wordpress.org](https://Wordpress.org) sites, so that I don’t risk breaking my blog if I end up migrating.

Thanks in advance to anyone willing to help a clumsy luddite trying to make sense of blogging platforms, and sorry if those questions are either too broad or ignorant.

1 Comment
  1. >Hi! I’m starting a blog on WordPress.com, but I’m also considering switching to WordPress.org with a registered domain later on

    There are many reasons why one might want choose WordPress.com vs WordPress.org, but it’s worth noting that you can use a registered domain on WordPress.com if you choose to. You just need one of the paid plans:

    https://wordpress.com/pricing/

    >The plugins I’m searching for would have to be free, fairly easy to use and ensure full interoperability between the WordPress.com and WordPress.org sites,

    So, just to clarify, you can use plugins on [WordPress.com](https://WordPress.com), but not on the free plan. You need to have either the Business or the eCommerce plan.

    >so that I don’t risk breaking my blog if I end up migrating.

    Regardless of what WordPress.com plan you use, there’s no risk of breaking your site by migrating. If you have a WordPress.com business plan, you can just use a migration plugin to move your site:

    https://wordpress.org/plugins/all-in-one-wp-migration/

    And if you are using any other plan, you can just follow these instructions:

    https://wordpress.com/support/export/

    This might be a useful read:

    https://en.support.wordpress.com/com-vs-org/

 

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