When starting a blog one of the first, and biggest decisions you will make is deciding which platform you will use for your blog. What is a blogging platform? A blogging platform is simply the software or service that you use to publish your blog content to the internet. These days many people will use either a website builder (like Wix.com or Squarespace.com) or a blogging software (like WordPress).
The Pros & Cons of WordPress
WordPress is the ultimate choice if you’re after complete customization, total control, and a real hands-on approach to your website. It’s perfect if you want a challenge – whether it’s coding, updating, installing, or just learning your way around.
Pros of WordPress
Ownership: Because a WordPress blog is self-hosted on your own website, you own and have complete control of your blog. Unlike other providers, nobody can come along and delete your blog, or make changes in terms and service without your knowledge or consent (trust us, it’s happened. Think of Blogger in years past).
Flexibility: WordPress comes with a plethora of options, some of which you have to pay for, but many of which are free. There are thousands of themes to choose from, so you can give your blog any look you want. There are also thousands of plugins available. WordPress plugins are so awesome because they easily enable you to add extra features to your site quickly and easily. In addition, you can set up whatever kinds of ads and monetization you want so you can monetize your blog.
Stable future: WordPress is actually an open source system, meaning that a whole community of users and developers control it. WordPress is also the most popular content management system. Its popularity and widespread use means that it will definitely be sticking around for a long time.
Design & Layout: With the onset of WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg blocks, it is now super easy to design in WordPress. Its more of a “what you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) editor that it was in previous years. This makes it a huge win in our books.
Cons of WordPress
Cost: Although it’s not super expensive, it will cost you. First, you’ll need to purchase a domain name (what you’ll use for your url), which usually doesn’t cost much more than $10. You then need to choose somewhere to host your site. You’ll pay depending on how much storage space and traffic you expect to need. We recommend SiteGround hosting because it is inexpensive, flexible and the customer service is outstanding. Here is a link to SiteGround and just so you know, we do get a small commission from this link which is used to help keep this site free.
Harder Set-Up: Because you have so many more options, setting up a WordPress blog is a little harder than SquareSpace or Wix, although it’s still relatively straightforward. You’ll need to take some time to choose your domain name, set up hosting, and construct your pages. Tutorials like this one from SiteGround make it gopretty quick. Templates and plugins can also make this task seem way less daunting.
More maintenance work: On WordPress, you are responsible for backing up your site, security, and maintenance. You’ll just want to make it a habit to routinely do maintenance just as you would for your home computer. If you want more information on WordPress security then just Google ‘Wordpress security’ and you should be able to find plenty of helpful information.
Pros & Cons of SquareSpace
Squarespace is best if you want a site that looks like it was made by a developer,without needing any advanced tech skills yourself.
Easy to use: Drag-and-drop editing tools make it easy to use. What you see is what you get (WYSIWYG) allows you to preview changes as you make them. Because Squarespace is a website builder, you can pick, switch, and personalize your templates using drag-and-drop. You simply choose an element like a text box, drag it to where you want it, and drop it – and that’s exactly how it will look once your page is published.
More difficult to use than other website builders, such as Wix.
Ownership: You do not actually own your site. You own your content, and your domain name but you do not own the template or the site.
Pros & Cons of Wix
Much like Squarespace – Wix is also best if you want a site that looks like it was made by a developer, without needing any advanced tech skills yourself.
Other blogging articles you might enjoy:
How to Choose a Niche for Your Blog
Choosing a Blogging Platform
Setting Up a WordPress Blog
How to Come Up with Blog Content
How to Write Engaging Blog Posts
Monetize Your Blog
Five Blogging Mistakes to Avoid
Generating Traffic to Your Blog