If you are considering starting a blog in 2020, you need to consider where you are going to publish it. Not only this you have to consider what the big vision is for creating the blog and how you are going to make money from blogging.
Before you start dreaming of your riches and sitting on a beach, you have to review the best websites for blogging. In this article, we will provide all the relevant info you need.
Not every blogging platform fits
Different bloggers have different needs. If you are a blogger that’s more focused on lengthy text then you want to choose a platform that allows for this. Likewise, if you are a blogger that’s more focussed on visuals then you need a platform that shows this.
Just looking at the type of blog you want to produce is one thing. Another aspect you have to consider is where you want your blog to be seen. Do you want your blog to be on social media primarily, do you just want to be published in some large publications you aspire to be seen in or do you want to build your own website where you can blog from and create a larger business from the blog.
Start with blogging for free
Blogging can get very expensive. Designing the website, paying hosting fees, creating your own product range and marketing automation tools make it a very costly experience.
If you are a new blogger you can avoid all of these expenses or even make money at the start of doing a blog. Check out these alternatives to having a website which bring all of the expenses.
BEST WEBSITES FOR BLOGGING (part 1): Blogger VS. WordPress
Blogger or WordPress, which is the best one for you? When even starting to think about creating a blog, you are inundated with lots of information about which one is best for bloggers.
Ultimately, your decision should come down to this, if you want it to be a hobby blog or a blog you can make some serious money from.
Blogger is a free tool that is part of the Google family. The blogs are hosted by Google and use the domain blogspot.com.
Blogger accounts are bundled with your Google account details, so you simply just need to go to Google, click on the apps (top right of your screen) and then click on Blogger. Then you are all ready to get started with your blog.
To monetize your blog on the Blogger platform, Google Adsense ads are placed on your blog. What else would you expect as Google is in effect your landlord with having Blogger as your platform.
The downside of using Blogger is that it is completely stripped back to the bare basics of blogging. So if you are looking to have a blog that is designed in your vision, then you are going to be disappointed.
In a nutshell, Blogger is an OK tool to use if you are only starting a blog and just want to dabble with it until you find what you really want from your blog.
Get started with WordPress for free with their free option WordPress.com. Although if you want to remove the WordPress logo, have your own domain and increase your storage there are paid plans.
Having said that, WordPress has many strengths. Strengths including
- Faster Loading Times
- Quick Setup
On the downside customization opportunities are limited unless you use WordPress.org.
In a nutshell, WordPress.com is a great starter for bloggers as you will attract the traffic but you won’t have the design features. To upgrade to the design features you need to move your WordPress blog to a host. Unless you start with a host then you remove the problem of transferring your blog.
BEST WEBSITES FOR BLOGGING (part 2): 6 Other platforms
Blogging is not just limited to these 2 giants of the blogosphere. There are 7 other options for you to start a blog.
Wix is a website builder primarily but you can add a blog if you wish. So if you are only planning on doing a blog then this may not be the right choice for you. But if you are wanting to have a website for your business and have a blog to support its marketing efforts, then Wix would be a great fit.
Looking for a platform that offers it all, Squarespace may be the perfect fit for you and here is why. You can customize your blog into your vision without ever needing to know a bit about coding.
Another impressive feature of Squarespace is that it has its own analytics dashboard. Letting you know where your traffic is coming from and what pages they are looking at plus so much more. But as with other platforms, Squarespace does fall short in some areas.
Areas including theme and plugin support are not great. Therefore if you run into problems with your plugins and theme you will need technical knowledge to fix it yourself.
Weebly is a platform to host not only your blog but also build a website. Weebly has a wide range of easy to use features including drag and drop options for those who are disinterested in learning coding.
Weebly is the perfect platform for you if you are a beginner blogger with little technical skills. If however you have technical skills, this is not the platform for you as you are unable to do changes and customization to HTML and CSS.
Strikingly is a website builder that is very simple and easy to use. Though if you only stick with the free plan you can only create a single page and have very limited creative freedom.
Strikingly is a website builder for anyone that is new to creating a website and not interested in scaling your blog. Though if you want to scale your blog, with Strikingly there are 2 premium options, pro and VIP.
Site123 is a basic website building option as you are restricted. Restricted on the design and features.
Though on the plus side they have a brilliant customer support service and are easy to use when designing your website.
Therefore, Site123 may be perfect for you if you are a complete beginner at having your own website and just want a place to publish your blog. Publish your blog and maybe only monetize it with affiliate links.
If you are looking to do more complex things such as building an email list or having a product library then you might want to stay away from this website builder. Having said that, if you upgrade your account with Site123 you will have the app market open to you.
Site123 app market allows you to add apps that improve the functionality of your website. There you will be able to add webmaster tools, analytics tools, social tools, online store tools and a whole host of other tools.
Alternative platforms to having a website
LinkedIn is the place to be if you are planning on writing a blog in the B2B niche. What’s even better is that it is also a publishing platform so you do not need a seperate website for your blog. You can just jump onto the LinkedIn Pulse and create articles there.
To write an article on LinkedIn Pulse all you need to do is click on ‘write an article’ which is just below where it says ‘Start a post’ on your newsfeed.
When you write an article on LinkedIn, it shares with your network. Further the reach by adding hashtags and replying to any comments made. When someone makes a comment then their network sees it and you want to give a good professional impression.
Instagram, the platform owned by social media giant Facebook, Instagram can be used for microblogging.
As we all know, Instagram is a very visual platform where posts are just displayed as images on your profile.
To use Instagram in this way, create the image. Then add 280 characters of text that include the main points that you want to convey and hashtags that are relevant and will attract the right people to you.
3. Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is not just limited to writing a blog to get a backlink for your own blog. It is big business to do guest blogging.
Large brands are looking for freelance blog writers to write for them, either as a one off blog or as a regular contributor. Typical payments are anywhere from $50 – $500. Payment depends on the length and quality. But beware, you only get paid after the blog has been published.
Guest blogging is not just for the seasoned bloggers. Some publications also accept pitches from the novice blog writer. So go ahead and start seeking out publications requesting contributors in your niche.
We hope this article provides good overview of the best websites for blogging. If you have any questions or comments, please let us know!