Best Website Builders For Blogs

The best blogging platforms – overview of 2019

To start a blog, people may have various reasons. But all of them boil down to following:

  • find the like-minded people and share with them the things you know or like

  • shape up your writing skills over time

  • to run the blog as an auxiliary tool to keep up with the audience of some main website, which sells things or services, to make your audience informed about novelties and generally to let them feel that the main website is alive and keeps developing

  • monetize, eventually – as many bloggers start what they’re doing with an eventual idea in their head to earn money on this.

To start doing it, you have to find the right website for your needs. You have options: to join some popular blog as a freelance/regular writer (to become similar to a journalist), go to Live Journal / Facebook or to start your independent website. All these choices have pros and cons considering the prospects but today, we are not going to tell about those pros and cons: we will look at pros and cons of blogging platforms as tools present on the modern market. They are more or less suitable to go for the latter option (having your own site).

 

Introduction into the blogging platforms

The blog sites are the tools, which allow you to create your website for independent writing. By the way, not only you can be the sole contributor to the blog in the future – you can run it together with your friends or like-minded people, to whom you will grant access into the admin panel giving them their password and login (if this or that website maker supports option of multiple users). This feature becomes extremely handy if your blog gains momentum and popularity.

Using website makers, you will be able to set up hassle-free, fast, and for the relatively low cost compared to what you could have spent if addressing to web building studios. Blog sites are designed to help any person start writing without having any specific technical knowledge about how to start a website, host it, make secure working, deliver storage space and domain name, and other things that are unknown to 99% of Internet users. You can join the army of bloggers right now – after reading our overview and selecting a proper blog site for you.

 

Tips on how to choose a blog platform

  1. Cost. All blog sites run based on a monthly subscription. Not only the monthly price should suit your budget but also for the money paid, it should provide you with the functionality that you need. You can use the free-of-charge usage of this or that blog site (if it provides such an opportunity) but it will be worthless for you if the site isn’t going to give you the functionality you want.

  2. Friendliness for users (especially, for beginners). When bloggers have an idea to start, they wanna do it quick and reliable. The speed and absence of hardness in starting a blog is what a blog site should offer you. It will be a good thing if it allows you to input changes into the HTML/CSS/JS codes manually but it must not push you to do them at any stage of working with the site – to make things easy.

  3. Scalability and changeability. In the future, your needs for the blog site will shape and change. The blog site should allow you to reshape the theme, looks, grips, and rethink some functionality. If it doesn’t allow you to – then avoid using it from the start.

  4. Maintenance. In other words, that’s how easy you are running it – what actions are required from you to run the blog. Is it just several clicks of your mouse to make a new blog and actions you need or is it an entire process full of complications to add/change a blog or write a comment? The easier it is, the lesser time you will spend doing your writing and the more concentrated you will be on what to write to please your audience, not fight with the tech.

  5. Monetization. It’s often a number 1 need of bloggers. You should see upfront, what ways of monetization the blog site allows (and for how much money) you and whether they all suit you.

 

Looking at the best blog builders

  1. WordPress.org – the best site to start a blog
  2. Weebly

  3. Wix

  4. WordPress.com

  5. Squarespace

  6. Blogger

  7. Tumblr

  8. Strikingly

  9. SITE123

 

Wordpress.org best blogging platform overview 

Wordpress.org is the most powerful site of the modern Internet nearly in every aspect, and for blogging too. Wordpress.org and Wordpress.com combined cover around the third part of all Internet websites today – which tells about their extreme usefulness and practicality. However, Wordpress.org is a very tough blog site to work with, as you have to know how to code or hire someone who will set up everything for you so you to work hassle-free. It may take good money.

 

Wordpress.org blogging platform strong sides:

  1. It is the most powerful in the world from all blog sites due to its extreme flexibility, which isn’t possible in any other site.

  2. It has so many plugins that regular users need a special guide not to become confused in tens of thousands of apps, widgets, and tools.

  3. Thousands of ready-made themes (some are free and some are paid) allow you to save nerves, time, and money at the initial setup.

  4. Mobile and tablet friendliness.

  5. Social media cross-integration is a very strong side of Wordpress and you can set up the interexchange of the information between your website and your social account(s).

  6. You own your content, not somebody else (as it often happens in other blog sites).

  7. A lot of support through the standard FAQs and community (but not the help center, as it is only present for Wordpress.com)

 

Wordpress.org blogging platform weak sides:

  1. This blog site requires many technical procedures to run at the very beginning to set up (unlike Wordpress.com), as it is a not self-hosted system – which means that you will have to search for a hosting on your own, which is another con.

  2. There is no standard user help as the webpages can be modified so strongly and far that no support center will be able to help you.

  3. It requires downloading and installing some software on your PC and then – some confusing technical setup. So you have to have admin rights of access on your PC.

  4. You are solely responsible for starting, maintaining, bug fixing, and troubleshooting. If you can’t cope with them, then hire someone who can. 

 

Wordpress.org blogging platform price of subscription:

There is no standard monthly pricing – it will solely depend on what choices you will make and whether they will be free or paid: themes, plugins, widgets, help of some programmer, hosting, domain name, and other elements of your website (like connection to paid tools, payment systems, obtaining SSL, HTTPS and other certificates, and much more things). Collectively, it may cost you from 0 dollars a month (even a hosting can be done for free but it’ll require hefty technical job from you to do to start a hosting on your PC always connected to the Internet, making it a host) and you’ll eventually pay just for the domain name bought from the domain names registrar, to ∞ (hundreds, thousands, and even millions of dollars are not the limit).

 

Weebly blogging platform overview

Weebly is known for its simplicity of operation and complete friendliness to users. It is the simplest choice on the market and way simpler than Wordress.org (actually, all blog sites are way simpler than Wordress.org). Operate with your mouse inside of a WYSIWYG interface with convenient drag-and-drop.

 

Weebly blogging platform strong sides:

  1. It’s highly easy to use and its drag-and-drop is one of the most convenient on the market.

  2. Complete mobile-friendliness.

  3. There is a mobile app so you can edit and add to your website on the go, using your smartphone.

  4. There is a possibility to run for free.

  5. Great SEO and easy connection of Google Analytics.

 

Weebly blogging platform weak sides:

  1. You can only integrate with the apps that are directly allowed, without a possibility to add more.

  2. Can’t export a website in wholeness.

  3. The free plan is quite limited and may not be suitable for most bloggers, after all.

  4. Poor integration abilities with third sides.

 

Weebly blogging platform price of subscription:

It has a number of subscription plans but not all of them are good and expedient for blogging. Not looking at the e-store pricing, we’d advise you to choose amongst the three: a free run, a one for €5 a month or the one for €10 a month. The latter two give you a nice advantage – a free domain if paid for a year. A free version is going to give you SEO, free SSL, and some hosting space, which may be enough for simple basic functionality. Two paid options give you more storage, no ads of Weebly in your pages, a possibility to make a website search, nice website stats, and several channels of support. The costliest option will even grant you a simple online store so you can start monetizing by means of selling your merchandise.

 

Wix blogging platform overview

Wix is one of the popular choices on the market only largely because of the huge marketing budget of this blog site, which they spend to be always in top search positions when people are googling for blog website builders. Wix is actually quite large and powerful tool but it may be a costly solution just to run a blog, considering its monthly pricing.

 

Wix blogging platform strong sides:

  1. Many integration abilities and powers of customization.

  2. You are not pushed to code HTML.

  3. Free initial website setup.

  4. HTML5 is the latest development of HTML protocol so everything will work on modern devices and will look modern, too.

  5. It has Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI) and that’s why you can set up a website within seconds of time (and adjust it in the future).

  6. Nice stock of free images, which you can change according to your needs and great website looks, right in the interface.

  7. You can backup and restore.

 

Wix blogging platform weak sides:

  1. It is a very heavy system to operate, which requires a lot of good Internet connection and a powerful PC. We’ve had experience when Wix was loading on our PC for 15 minutes.

  2. Even when you pay (the simplest subscription plan is for $4.50 a month), it still goes with large Wix branding all over and too limited capabilities.

  3. Choose your template wisely at the start – as there is no change of it possible if you don’t wanna lose all previously entered information and made adjustments.

  4. There is no such a thing that you pay only for 1 month – there are a lot of additional costs inside of the interface, for which you have to pay to be able to use and scale-up smoothly.

  5. You can’t download the entire website’s content.

 

Wix blogging platform price of subscription:

Wix offers quite many subscription plans but we’d like to highlight only two that should fit your needs as a blogger:

  • ‘Combo’ for $8.50 a month: 2 Gb bandwidth a month, 3 Gb storage, a possibility to connect your own domain name (and it is granted to you for 1year), no branded ads, and some advertising opportunities.

  • ‘Unlimited’ for $12.50 a month gives the same as mentioned plus: no limits in bandwidth a month, 10 Gb storage space, and more advertising opportunities.

 

Wordpress.com blogging platform overview

Wordpress.com is a self-hosted system and does not require from you any technical knowledge, installations of anything on your PC, and all other tiresome tech actions. Just start your work in this blog tool like in the rest of other simple tools.

 

Wordpress.com blogging platform strong sides:

  1. An installation wizard will guide you through the setup steps.

  2. No tech or coding knowledge required.

  3. Simple interface.

  4. Nice stats.

  5. Professional support in multiple channels.

 

Wordpress.com blogging platform weak sides:

  1. You have to choose wisely between accounts as they largely differ in features.

  2. Monetization starts with high-cost plans, as well as SEO and some useful advanced features like advertising.

  3. The site owns your website, not you.

  4. Good for ‘static’ popular blog sites only.

 

Wordpress.com blogging platform price of subscription:

To make it super easy for you to decide on, this blog site has a dedicated solution for bloggers, called ‘Blogger’, just for €3 a month. Within this, the company gives you:

  • a domain with ‘.blog’ ‘tail’

  • 6 Gb of storage space

  • convenient support by e-mail

  • all essential features to start a website

  • a possibility to use dozens of free themes (but an opportunity to buy one from the selection of premium ones comes with a costlier package)

  • no ads on your blog site

  • basic customization.

However, this package of the subscription isn’t suitable for bloggers who aim at monetization – as in the ‘Blogger’ subscription, there are no monetization features given. They only start with ‘Premium’ for €8 a month – which is already 2.7 times bigger money to spend each month just to blog. So you can start at 3 Euros a month and then upgrade to 8 Euros a month – when your blog is going to gain popularity and there will be a good moment to start earning.

It also offers a free subscription but it’s too limited. You should carefully study the differences between the packages to choose the right for you – as there are many discrepancies, which eventually may make you land on this or that subscription package.

 

Squarespace blogging platform overview

Many bloggers love this easiest blog platform for wonderful beauty of pages and relative simplicity of working process inside of this website builder.

 

Squarespace blogging platform strong sides:

  1. Beginner-friendly.

  2. Powerful blogging.

  3. Hosting and domain name included.

  4. Free SSL.

  5. No bandwidth and storage limitations.

  6. Top-rated metrics.

  7. Absolute mobile and tablet friendliness.

  8. All-day-round customer support.

 

Squarespace blogging platform weak sides:

  1. There are no third-party integrations, which are not included in the allowed list.

  2. The plan for $12 a month is limited to have 20 pages and only 3 contributors – so, after getting popular, you are pushed to pay more.

  3. Only 2 sub-levels of pages hierarchy.

 

Squarespace blogging platform price of subscription:

It’s quite expensive to start and only one subscription is actually suitable for this: the one for $12 a month (or $16 if paid month-to-month, not annually).

 

Blogger platform overview

It was started 20 years ago and after 4 years, it was acquired by Google company. You don’t have to pay money for usage. 

 

Blogger platform strong sides:

  1. Nice and easy to set up within literally minutes of your time with your G account.

  2. No payment for hosting and maintenance.

  3. Seamless integration with other Google services and apps.

  4. Great technical side and security.

  5. Mobile friendly.

  6. Anti-spam embedded.

 

Blogger platform weak sides:

  1. Too basic functionality.

  2. Not good in the design options, very limiting creativity (actually, killing it).

  3. There are no integrations with third parties, which are not directly pointed at.

  4. Adverts all over your website.

 

Blogger platform price of subscription:

It is free and it’s completely integrated with Google, so if you have a Google account – just sign up for free.

 

Tumblr blogging platform overview

This is good only for micro-blogging and is similar to Twitter. You won’t be able to write long descriptive texts, as you are limited to short remarks. That's something between Facebook and Twitter. If you live in that narrow niche – then choose it. It is a great tool if you need personal writing or the one about your hobbies and micro-blogs shaped as tweets. 

 

Tumblr blogging platform strong sides:

  1. Free of charge.

  2. Easy to start with and run.

  3. Tumblr.com subdomain of hosting.

  4. Highly powerful integrated social features (hit likes, shares, follow, do re-blogging).

  5. Publishing content is easy (not only texts but also gifs, videos, audios, and images).

  6. Design opportunities make your freedom to thrive.

 

Tumblr blogging platform weak sides:

  1. Can’t extend the existing features.

  2. There is no backup (unless you do everything manually). So, as a consequence, there is no restore.

 

The blogging platform price:

It’s free.

 

Strikingly blogging platform overview

Strikingly is relatively easy to use, offers a nice value for money, has the great support of users and help center. However, it is not good with its features and may offer only poor quality of design and flexibility of adjustments. Bloggers choose this system because they do not need to worry about any technical issues of the functioning of their blog and because it is stylish and delivers many over-the-ordinary templates to select from. You can be a tech-savvy guy or not know anything in this area at all – Strikingly blog site is going to suit all. One of its specializations is creating one-page top blog sites but you can do much more. You receive many analytics functions coupled with RSS feed & website search option. 

The homepage is easy to navigate and it refreshes the page automatically as a new post arrives. However, it is limited to 5 Gb bandwidth a month (when opting for a free plan). But just pay some money to remove this low limit and unlock premium features. 

 

Strikingly blogging platform strong sides:

  1. Any number of storage in every plan and limitless bandwidth when opting for ‘Pro’ and higher.

  2. Get a custom domain for the 1st year.

  3. For relatively low money, you can sell many products – but even if you do not pay and use it for free, you can still sell 1 product in a free online store – that’s the best e-commerce offer ever.

  4. Access to HTML, JavaScript, CSS.

 

Strikingly blogging platform weak sides:

  1. Only ‘Pro’ and higher plans free you from the Strikingly blog site’s branded ads all over. So it is extremely costly to deprive yourself of the branded ads – the cost up to $20 a month is the highest on the market.

  2. ‘Limited’ for as max as $12 is still shrunken in bandwidth and does not allow you a lot of basics, which come as granted or for significantly lesser money in other best blog website builders (like search, password protection of the website, editing the source code, and having multiple pages).

  3. It is too pricey in general.

  4. It cannot compete to previously mentioned blog sites on the list, as it has too little powers to do that. It is tuned to simplicity.

 

Strikingly blogging platform price of subscription:

There are several plans, which may be suitable for your writing:

  • A free one

  • ‘Limited’ for $7… $12 a month

  • ‘Pro’ for 11.20… 20 dollars a month

  • ‘VIP’ for making serious business for $34.40… $49 a month.

The mentioned pricing will change depending on the term of your subscription – it can be a month-to-month solution and it can be for 1, 2, 3, and 5 years in a row. We advise you to ponder really seriously about the pricing and power of this blog site as it is quite costly compared to others.

 

Site123 blogging platform overview

It is a not bad choice for frank ease of use, nice value for money, helpful support, FAQ, and great customer score. It is heavy to find better support than in this blog site (thanks to ultra-helpful live chat). 

 

Site123 blogging platform strong sides:

  1. The helpful design assistance, which allows setting up a website initially fast and without specific knowledge about the functioning of the interface of the system.

  2. It is easy to start and continue.

  3. It is great for personal blogging and has an RSS feature.

  4. Comment and reply tools are easy and do not require additional actions from users to leave a comment like it is the case with the Disqus.

  5. Integration with social media.

 

Site123 blogging platform weak sides:

  1. Not too powerful in quality of offered features.

  2. Limits the design depth.

  3. It is not a good choice for complex writing with many contributors, topics, and design features.

 

Site123 blogging platform price of subscription:

When you enter the pricing page, you see two offers: for no money (very limited storage and bandwidth) and for $7.80 a month (a free yearly domain name, 10 Gb storage, 5 Gb bandwidth, no commercial of a blog website maker, and starting e-commerce). But when you opt for purchase, you see that they actually offer four other pricing plans: ‘Basic’, ‘Advanced’, ‘Professional’, and ‘Gold’, and neither of them coincides with the mentioned two. Something’s not right here.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How to monetize a blog?

There are many ways to monetize your blog and we’ll briefly highlight for you some ways:

  • Affiliate marketing

  • PPC

  • Selling the commercial space on your website (including the native advertising)

  • Selling your real or digital product

  • Donations

  • Get paid for placing sponsored posts and articles inside of your site

  • Generate customers or prospects for the sales companies and individuals

  • E-mail lists to sell stuff and get subscribers to you and to other sellers

  • Create a list of blog sites and design similar websites for other people getting paid for your knowledge

  • Sell your good-working best personal blogs, which earn a lot of money, to some interested people, the instantaneous revenue from which will depend on your monthly income.

 

How to set up a blog?

It is easy to do with website builders for blogs, some of which have a setup wizard, while others offer just a comprehensible easy interface, which shows many hints to beginners, familiarizing them with the working process and steps of setting up.

 

How to promote your blog?

There are more than 1 and even 10 tactics to make promotion. Here is a list of some ways:

  1. Twitter

  2. Social media

  3. Search engine optimization

  4. Improve & repurpose

  5. Pinterest

  6. Paid promotions

  7. Outreach & partnerships

  8. LinkedIn

  9. Facebook

  10. E-mail

  11. Communities having the same interests

  12. Blog post optimization

  13. Automated content pushes

 

What should I blog about?

Answering this question, most bloggers and specialists recommend doing what you really like and know yourself. Certainly, your interests may not coincide with what is popular (or ‘trendy’) today (for instance, you see that people are interested in overviews of equipment, household appliances or want to read about DIY stuff but your interests are about fun geometry or finding videos of cute fails and wins). But the goal in anything you do is to be passionate about this and trying to improve from a post to post. 

You should also have a nice vocabulary and great general experience and knowledge background to make texts interesting to your audience and rich in speech. Make sure to crosscheck information that you write, as it must be relevant and truthful. 

You may tell people about the particular knowledge that you have or to fill in the gaps and informational omissions in your favorite best blog sites. You also may find some problems or issues and focus on solving them, as it is done in some other blog websites. You may also address only some particular audience.

 

How to create a successful blog?

Find a good ‘catchy’ name. Try to brainstorm and find catchy content for the audience. Practice your own style of writing – if it is different and filled with humor, people are most likely to read it and return to you. Setup the website and host. Do your writing strictly following the schedule (so not to disappoint anyone). Always communicate with your audience, even on negativity, turning it to evenness or positivity.

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