If you’ve done any research into blogging platforms, you’ve probably noticed an overwhelming number of options available, with required skill sets ranging from 100% DIY to all-inclusive. Before you make any decisions, there are a few factors to consider when choosing the best blogging platform for you.
If you’re a blogger without much technical knowledge, you want a platform that is easy to set up, has drag-and-drop functionality, and requires no coding skills. More importantly, whether you are building a personal blog or a blog for your small business, you need to think about the blog you want now, as well as for the future. It’s important to choose a platform in the beginning that is flexible enough to grow with you and your audience.
Here’s a rundown of the 5 best blogging platforms and which one may be right for you.
1. Wix: Best Blogging Platform for Small-Mid-Sized Businesses
- Price: $4.50 – $25.00 per month
- Blog templates available: 500+
- Support: phone support (but not 24/7), email, online forum
Wix offers small businesses a flexible drag-and-drop functionality that requires no coding skills, making the blog-building experience as easy as it gets. Wix’s templates are by far the best feature. Wix offers hundreds of professional, modern designs for almost any industry, and is one of the few site builders that allows you to animate text and other elements. Wix has a simple interface from which you can add and edit photos, video, and text that reflect your brand’s identity. There is a posting schedule, Facebook comments section and just about anything else you need in a blogging tool.
A notable fault in Wix is that it doesn't offer data exporting. So, if you choose to leave for another platform, you’ll have to manually copy and paste your old data to your new site.
While Wix is not the cheapest option out there, it is definitely among the best-looking. If you’re running an Ecommerce business and want to incorporate a blog onto your website, Wix is a beautiful option to consider. If your main goal is to blog, Wix might be a bit too robust for your needs.
2. SquareSpace: Best Blog Platform for Increasing Your Web Presence
- Price: $12 – $40
- Blog templates available: Vast selection organized into “template families”
- Support: Customer service reps available 24/7 by ticket submission; knowledge base; community forum
SquareSpace's vast template library, which is divided into categories or “template families,” excels at turning ideas into creative realities. By utilizing templates within a template family, business-owners can create blogs that aesthetically echo their website while at the same time distinguishing themselves by theme, mood, or tone. Beyond the presentational level, this is a boon for organizations looking to grow their online presence.
SquareSpace blogs are equipped for marketing and media tools as well as productivity apps. Though SquareSpace is easy-to-use, it has the potential to overwhelm. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially for creative-minded users intent on making their vision a reality. Aesthetically-agnostic users may be less enchanted by the countless design terms, but for those looking to strike a professional tone and distinguish themselves from competitors, SquareSpace excels.
3. WordPress.com: The Best Free Blog Platform
- Price: free – Free-$45 per month
- Blog templates available: 250+
- Support: live chat (for paid plans), email, community forums
WordPress is one of the most popular free blogging platforms available, and for good reason. WordPress effortlessly blends simplicity and customization, making it an ideal choice for creative DIYers. For example, users can choose from 70 languages, add countless plugins, and experiment with hundreds of templates, themes, and mobile options. The free version has limited capacity but paid versions offer a wealth of SEO tools and statistics. Equally important, WordPress.com has forums with a highly active community of posters sharing tips and innovations, thus embodying the blogger spirit in a way many of its competition fail to do.
4. Weebly: Best Blogging Platform for Ecommerce
- Price: $5– $25 per month
- Blog templates available: 50
- Support: phone support (but not 24/7), live chat, email
With easy-to-use, drag-and-drop features, Weebly is one of the best blogging platforms for beginners. Giving you the tools you need to run a successful blog, the modern templates allow you to present your content in an attractive way – all without any coding knowledge.
Weebly’s app center has a range of media options and integrations available, making it simple to incorporate photos and videos into your blog. Its library of widgets and add-ons puts your creativity in the driver’s seat, but beware: Weebly makes it extremely hard to transfer your blog to another platform. You would have to export and transfer the old data over manually. Advanced users might be annoyed by the lack of control they have with the code, but the versatility of this tool makes it a smart choice for the novice as well as seasoned bloggers.
5. Web.com: The Best DIFM Blogging Platform
- Price: $22.95 - $39.95
- Blog templates available: 2,000+
- Support: 24/7 phone support
Web.comhas a long history in the web building arena, but has taken a backseat to many of the new drag-and-drop, do-it-yourself web building competitors. For those looking for a DIFM (do-it-for-me) builder, however, Web.com still makes the top of most lists. It offers over 2,000 templates, but they’re not the most modern or exciting out there. Where Web.com really shines is not in its hosting services, but rather in digital marketing services. This company excels in PPC, Facebook, and SEO services that increase its customers online visibility and web traffic.
For bloggers, Web.com offers a 1-click WordPress install to get blogs up and running without much effort. Customers get all of the bells and whistles that come with WordPress, but because blogging isn’t Web.com’s main service offering, it has been known to struggle with support and to provide the same level of service that the competition provides.
If you’re a small business who would prefer to have someone build your site and blog for you, Web.com is a solid choice. However, the prices are higher compared to other alternatives. With every add-on feature or service that you want to incorporate in your site comes an additional expense. There are a handful of more cost-effective website builders out there that can do a better job, at a better price.
Find the Best Blogging Platform for You
Now that you know the facts about 5 of the top blog builders in the market, you should realize there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution available. You need to select the best option for you, based on your goals, expertise, and resources. This will help you to create a blog that your readers will love and continue to read.