With over 200 million blogs on the internet, and more being created every day, it can be tricky to decide which blogging platform to use.
Fortunately, this post can help you decide! Here’s everything you need to know about some of the most popular blogging platforms out there to help you figure out which one is best for your needs.
The most widely used blogging platform, WordPress runs 28% of all websites on the Internet. It’s incredibly easy to use and has an incredibly active community that supports it.
It can be managed by professional web designers as well as individuals with basic HTML knowledge. There are dozens of templates available for purchase or free from WordPress itself, making it super simple to design a website that suits your needs and your brand.
But with such mass popularity comes its problems: Just like any other tool in existence, there are bad apples who abuse it—and WordPress is no exception.
That said, without a doubt, WordPress is currently one of the most popular options for blogging platforms on both local and international levels. You might say it’s hard to beat free plus 30+ million users.
If you’re planning to launch a long-term, high-traffic site then your choice of blogging platform will be critical. Ghost offers tremendous flexibility and customization options with its advanced theme and plugin system.
Its WYSIWYG editor also supports HTML input which means you can tweak things on a code level for more control over your site.
That said, Ghost only offers their paid hosted version so that means if you plan on launching your own self-hosted instance of Ghost, it will cost some money upfront as well as hosting costs in order to run everything.
All of Ghost’s plans are fairly priced depending on how much bandwidth you need but start at $10 per month for about 1GB per month. A less expensive alternative would be Squarespace or WordPress with great content marketing plugins like Yoast SEO.
Both platforms offer all of your standard blogging features as well as design templates to help customize each site. They even have free basic versions if you just want something quick and easy (although you’ll have less storage and fewer monthly visitors).
But there’s a reason why they call them blogging platforms… both Squarespace & WordPress host blogs AND websites, plus they offer additional hosting services should you ever decide to get into e-commerce or other kinds of websites/services down the road.
Offering a variety of options, Squarespace is well-suited for established businesses looking to expand their online presence. For $12 per month, you get 100 templates and access to advanced features like e-commerce capabilities, real-time blogging, client management tools, and analytics.
As its name suggests, Squarespace allows users to build custom websites without requiring any coding skills or design experience. Another standout feature includes its integration with Google Analytics (and other analytics services), which makes it easier to monitor traffic on your site.
The service also integrates with numerous payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe so you can start making money off your website immediately after setup. If you have an idea but don’t have time to build a full-fledged website, Squarespace is a great choice that offers everything you need in one place.
While Weebly’s UI might be more like a tool than a true blogging platform, it’s one of the easiest ways to get started. Its simple drag-and-drop interface lets you quickly customize your site and add content to your pages with just a few clicks.
You can also sign up for their free developer account, which gives you access to an API that allows you to integrate some of your own custom code with Weebly. We don’t see them being a long-term solution, but they are worth checking out if you are just starting out and want something simple that gets results fast.
Their basic plan is free; however, we recommend spending a little money on either their business or pro accounts. These plans offer premium support, automatic backups (at reasonable intervals), and no ads—which will help keep your future self from getting frustrated should anything go wrong.
They also come with premium templates so you can jumpstart the look of your site from day one (which isn’t always easy). You could try Wix as well, but since both sites have very similar offerings (similar pricing too), we prefer Weebly for their short learning curve and outstanding customer service (it was named our 2018 Readers’ Choice winner).
Overall though, any of these platforms would do just fine in helping you start out. Though once you become more comfortable with how things work online—we’d definitely suggest jumping over to WordPress …
Once you find your voice and are ready to start sharing your ideas, there are many different platforms to choose from. There’s a lot of debate over which one is best—but if you want to get started quickly and take advantage of Medium’s collaborative features, we recommend starting here.
However, if you’re looking for a more in-depth experience or perhaps you have built up an existing audience that would benefit from migrating, WordPress or Tumblr may be better options.
While other sites like Squarespace are very simple and can certainly work for individuals with simple needs, they lack certain features that may be important as your blogging career grows. Choose what fits your unique style and consider how easy it will be to share your content.
With such a wealth of choices, it may also make sense to create accounts on multiple platforms! Many sites offer great resources for new users who aren’t familiar with their dashboard.
Additionally, most platforms now offer mobile apps that allow you to update and monitor comments on the go. Of course, you should always ensure that security settings are up-to-date so only those who need access can view your content.
If you’re building a small site or portfolio, SquareSpace and Wix may be great options for you. Both offer free websites (SquareSpace allows for up to five pages). These platforms have templates that allow for custom designs so that your website looks less like a cookie-cutter template, but also have drag-and-drop functionality that simplifies creating new pages or posts.
They also have robust analytics so you can track how people are accessing your content. The downside of these types of sites: neither has user forums. This means there’s no place for users to engage with each other, as well as no way to build a community around your brand name.
But if you’re just starting out, these sites might be perfect! I recommend testing them both out before making a decision; they’re not expensive and they’re easy enough to use that you’ll get your money’s worth even if it turns out they aren’t right for what you need right now.