Blogging platforms are a must-have in this day and age, given that companies need to share their message online to connect with their audiences. Blogging might also provide SEO perks, allowing you to increase web exposure and boost your lead-generation efforts.
In this article, I’ll mention some of the most popular solutions you can find online. Many of these tools are quite intuitive, so you can utilize them even if you have limited technical knowledge.
What is a Blogging Platform?
As most of my readers already know, a blogging platform allows you to create, edit, and post personal blogs. Besides publishing articles, popular blogging platforms allow you to create customized sites with minimal effort. They also come with various plug-ins and tools that make your blogging process much easier.
Many people use the term “blogging platform” interchangeably with “content management systems” or CMS. While both serve a similar purpose, there are some differences between them. In other words, CMS is a much more comprehensive term as these platforms allow you to create sites and blog on them at the same time.
Content management systems can also be considered a blogging platform, although a simple blogging platform doesn’t have to be a CMS. For example, you can use LinkedIn as a blogging platform, but you can’t run a site on it. Thus, no one refers to LinkedIn as CMS.
Why Use a Blogging Platform?
Of course, the main reason why you would use this kind of software is so you can publish blog posts. Nowadays, people utilize articles to share their messages online, either via social media or search engines. That way, companies can improve lead generation and increase brand awareness.
The great thing about any blogging tool is that it allows a high degree of integration. Website owners can combine their blog platform with tools such as Google Search Console and Google Analytics to track user experience and interactions. You can also go with a self-hosted blogging platform, allowing you to completely skip the usual hosting providers.
17 Best Blogging Platforms
Now, let’s review all these digital solutions, their powerful features, and customization options!
WordPress is the most popular platform in this category, accounting for 40% of all blog users. It is an excellent choice whether you’re looking to create complex or simple blogs, and it comes with a comprehensive content editor. Business owners can also benefit from its wide range of premium themes, allowing them to create blogging sites with minimal effort.
WordPress features an extensible architecture that allows plugins to add additional functionality. The WordPress community has developed nearly 60,000 plugins, ranging from built-in SEO tools to communication tools and other nifty programs. It also helps that the platform is open-source, allowing your developers to make all sorts of modifications to the original software.
Note that WordPress.org is a CMS which needs to be installed on a server. Most major website host providers have one-click WordPress installations to allow you to easily do this and then customize your website. But you are on your own in managing both your website host provider as well as the software itself, although there are numerous WordPress maintenance services you can use to assist you.
This website is currently running on WordPress.org, although it was originally launched as a WordPress.com blog back in 2008…
Unlike WordPress.org, WordPress.com serves as a self-hosted WordPress platform, which you can utilize to circumvent potential hosting costs. However, with self-hosted WordPress, you’ll deprive yourself of potential search engine optimization benefits as well as other benefits such as using plugins if you do not update to their business plan, which is currently $300 a year.
The reason why people go with WordPress.com, despite its limited options, is because it is completely free and still uses the popular WordPress blogging user interface. Nevertheless, you’ll still need to pay a small fee for a custom domain name. Still, going with WordPress.com is a popular choice for beginners and small entrepreneurs.
Wix’s main selling point is that you can create a professional-looking blog with minimal effort. The software works under the drag-and-drop premise, allowing you to create a basic blog even if you have minimal coding experience. However, it’s worth noting you can’t change a blog theme once you commit to one.
Furthermore, Wix is one of the most powerful platforms on a budget. Even the business plan is relatively cheap compared to other software. Wix is also fantastic for online stores as you get SEO and selling tools coupled with an appointment booking feature. In fact, out of approximately 8.6 million Wix users, 3 million are eCommerce sites.
If you’re an online teacher, you should definitely consider Squarespace. The site is perfect for advanced users selling courses on the web, as it allows you to create members area and password-protected content. The newsletter feature works like a charm, making it easier to share the notifications and offers with your attendees.
Another major benefit of using Squarespace is that you don’t need a hosting plan. The platform is self-hosted, so you don’t need to worry about spending money on third-party providers like GoDaddy. My main issue with the program is that it doesn’t have a backup feature, which is something you can find in just about any decent CMS.
Similar to Wix, Weebly allows you to create a perfect blog design by simply dragging and dropping different elements. The platform has a fantastic free plan, although you’ll need to get a business plan for a custom domain. The software has a password protection feature, which can limit access to certain pages and folders (perfect for courses and memberships).
The thing I like about Weebly is its app center. Here, you can add basic blogging tools that you can access anytime from within the platform. As if that wasn’t enough, you can also check out the support section where you can find resources to sharpen your SEO and coding skills.
The first thing I need to mention about Drupal is that it’s fully free and open-source. This makes it perfect for users with software development experience and specific blogging goals and needs. If you ever get stuck, there’s a large Drupal community you can ask for advice (approximately 1.3 million users).
The biggest drawback is that Drupal can feel clunky at times. Creating a blog from scratch can be tricky if you’re a newbie, and the same can be said for its basic functions. There’s also no official support team that can help you out. Still, given that the software is optimized for various devices and is regularly updated, it can be a good choice for a long-term blogging project.
Further Reading: The EASY Way How to Write a KILLER Blog Post in 19 Steps
Joomla has risen to the top of CMS due to its flexibility, convenience, and advanced functionality. The all-in-one platform is open-source and supports various types of content formats. In fact, you can tinker with your content structure and layout to create unique, beautiful blog posts.
Although it’s open-source, you don’t need any technical skills to use it. Even a complete beginner can utilize native availability, allowing them to access preconfigured options, thus circumventing the coding process. Its marketing tools might even be better than WordPress’s SEO functions, which is another major plus.
Blogger is one of the oldest sites of this kind. Although it has been eclipsed by other powerful CMSs nowadays, it can still serve as a good source of traffic. The cool thing about this blog software is that a user can create up to 100 different sites without having to pay for a hosting service.
As with many other modern CMS, Blogger has built-in audience tools. Furthermore, you can integrate it with Google AdSense to make a profit out of your visitors. While the company has done a great job of modernizing its CMS, Blogger has limited features compared to some other platforms in this category.
One thing I appreciate about Ghost is that it optimizes your site automatically. That way, it is suitable even for users with limited marketing experience. Given that it’s a lightweight program, it works incredibly fast. You can also benefit from one of its 100+ themes and advanced monetization features.
Further Reading: The 6 Huge Benefits of Business Blogging
10. HubSpot CMS
Given that this platform was made by one of the best marketing companies, it isn’t surprising that it has some of the most advanced, powerful features within the software category. HubSpot CMS offers a plethora of themes, comprehensive CRM data, and self-hosting. It utilizes a drag-and-drop system, making website creation a breeze.
I also like its migration feature. Companies can switch from their previous CMS to HubSpot with minimal effort. The company has a specialized replatforming team that can easily transfer your platform into HubSpot, no matter where you live globally.
FYI: One data study indicated that HubSpot was the 2nd most popular platform to WordPress.org:
Medium might be the most popular blog platform in the world. It allows users to share all types of stories and ideas, making it an excellent choice for authors with different backgrounds. Even better, people can earn some money while writing on Medium, which can serve as an extra incentive.
Access to a large number of readers makes Medium a great option for bloggers with limited followership. Alas, as with many other traditional blogging platforms, you don’t own the published content. There are also various limitations you need to consider before using the site.
Further Reading: 15 Blog Writing Tips for Before, During, and After Writing Your Post
Tumblr is a mixture of social media and a microblogging platform. Users can freely post on it, and there’s a homepage where the most popular posts are shared. You also get unlimited storage, an SSL certificate, and a few other perks. The best thing yet is that you can utilize Tumblr to share your corporate message while ensuring a great user experience.
Unfortunately, while Tumblr can increase brand awareness, it isn’t ideal for everyone. The platform is much more suitable for short posts, so long, written articles won’t do you much good. It also doesn’t help that you can’t add plug-ins and have limited customization options at your disposal.
Further Reading: 67 Best Blog Post Ideas to Get More Traffic and Leads
Alongside Medium, LinkedIn is perhaps the most popular blogging platform in the world. The site has an incredible reach, allowing its best authors to appear among top search engine results. As such, the platform can significantly boost your brand awareness and lead generation.
As with other blogging platforms, LinkedIn is a fantastic choice for authors who have small blogs and want to boost their exposure. It can also work well for users who are active on this social media, as they can combine blogging and other forms of LinkedIn interaction for maximum effect.
The first thing you’ll notice upon landing on Web.com is that this company allows you to create a site with the power of AI. The unique feature can save you a lot of time and money while producing excellent results. Furthermore, you can even contact their team for assistance, and they can produce a customized solution for your brand.
Among other features, you can try out their AI domain generator. The platform also works well for eCommerce businesses; there is a plethora of SEO and marketing tools that will make your job much easier. If we also consider affordable prices, it’s no wonder Web.com is popular among so many users.
Further Reading: What is Blog Marketing? How Can It Work for Your Business?
HostGator was initially known for its hosting services. As time went by, the company introduced a CMS platform, combining the hosting functionality with a website builder and a blogging platform.
As with other systems from this category, Gator comes with a plethora of premade templates. There’s also a massive stock photo gallery, which can be a real game-changer once you start blogging. Instead of spending money on your own pics or buying them from Shutterstock, you can grab them from the same platform.
Each one of these blog tools mentioned in the article can be fantastic for your business. These CMSs provide full functionality for your website, allowing you to create a beautiful platform with minimal investment. You can also use them to share relevant articles with your audience and boost your placements within Google.
Even the external blogging platform can provide a certain value. You can utilize them to share your company message and build an audience externally. As many of them are free, you can start your marketing efforts on the right foot without overspending.
Hero Photo by DaryaDarya LiveJournal on Unsplash
Best Blogging Platform FAQs
With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. However, after careful consideration and research, it becomes clear that the best platform to start a blog is WordPress. WordPress is a versatile platform that offers endless customization options, easy-to-use features, and a user-friendly interface. Additionally, WordPress has a vast array of plugins, themes, and widgets that allow bloggers to tailor their websites to their specific needs.
When it comes to the best site to write blogs, there are several factors to consider. Of course, everyone’s needs differ, so we recommend conducting research beforehand. With that said, many bloggers praise WordPress for its versatility, ease of use, and vast pool of plugins. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a platform geared towards visuals and a community that prioritizes aesthetics, Tumblr may be more up your alley. Ultimately, the best site to write blogs is subjective.
When it comes to creating a blog, selecting the right platform is essential. WordPress.com, Wix, and Blogger are among the top free blogging platforms available. These platforms offer user-friendly interfaces, customizable templates, and a range of features to help you create engaging content. Each of these platforms caters to different needs, depending on your preferred design aesthetics, level of customization, and the type of content you create. Ultimately, it’s best to test each of them and weigh the pros and cons before settling on the one that’s right for you.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to blogging. Blog success does not depend on the type of blog, but rather on the individual’s skills and dedication. However, certain blog types such as lifestyle, fashion, travel, and personal development, have been known to attract readership. These niches provide a platform for individual expression while addressing a broad range of common issues and interests. Hence, maintaining consistency, quality, and relevance, can determine the success of any blog type, with the potential to become a money-making venture if done right.
According to recent statistics, WordPress.com currently holds the title for the most widely used blog site. This user-friendly platform offers a plethora of features and customization options, making it easy for bloggers of all levels to create and maintain a successful blog. Additionally, WordPress.com boasts a large community of users who offer support and advice to one another. Although there are certainly other viable options available, it is clear that WordPress.com has earned its spot as the top choice for bloggers worldwide.