- Internet & the Web
How to find the Best Blogging Platform
Understanding Blogging Platforms
In many ways, finding the best blogging platform for you is a search for your personal preferences. There are many different styles of platforms out there. And you can look to find one that not only fits your personal opinions of what blogging is, but one that will suit your style.
Not only is this a question of style or preference, but also a question of need. I use different blog platforms for different purposes. If I am relying on Adsense for blog income, I am going to use my own domained Wordpress blog, for an authority blog. If it is a niche blog, I will use the free Blogger platform. If I am looking for something to make quick announcement, twitter type posts, I would use Tumblr. And if I am making an informative niche blog, without Adsense, I am going to use the free Wordpress platform.
Personally, I stick to those four styles of blogging. But there are those and many more. I will cover in detail, those and more in the remainder of this article. So, hunker down and get comfy, There is a bit of ground to cover.
Hosted Wordpress Blog
The self domained wordpress blog platform, or format, is one of the easiest to use, and on top of that it is one that most readers understand and see regularly. With this, you are paying for hosting and a domain, so you will be paying monthly to use this format.
What this really means to me, is, it has to be a money maker, or an authoritative style of blog. One that will generate huge amounts of traffic and one that offers me several different ways to make money. If you are a new blogger, this is not a very wise place to start. This is a final goal, if your intention is to make money blogging.
This blog would be at the center of a "system" you would build to make money off blogs. And for beginners, It would initially be an end result. I would not recommend you spend money on a hosted blog until you try your talents with the free blogging platforms. But when you reach this point, a self hosted blog will give you ultimate freedom. You do not need to worry about a company controlling you. You can use adsense, you can set up forums or services, or checkouts for a product. It is the pinnacle of what you would try to reach as a blogger who is trying to make money online.
Free to use Blogger Platform
Blogger really is a great blog platform. Overall, it may be my favorite. It is by far the easiest to use. Blogger has taken ease of use to an artform and almost anyone can get a blog started in minutes. On top of that, it is easy to add adsense to your blog.
You have tons of template options, and tons of gadgets you can add to your blog. And you can arrange your gadgets to meet your needs and personality.
Personally, I would consider the blogger platform for most general blogging needs. It is a great choice for beginners, and is highly popular. It has a High PR, and is fairly easy to build readership with this respected service. It works great for niche blogs, or personal blogs. And could even be used for larger, more authoritative blogs. Many people may disagree with this statement. Many firmly believe you need to use a self hosted blog for your primary blog. I don't necessarily agree with this opinion.
Free to use Wordpress blog
Wordpress.com is another free to use blogging platform. Wordpress is highly popular. Blog readers understand the format and are very comfortable with the format of a wordpress blog. Wordpress.com carries a very high PR and can offer you the chance of a very popular blog, if used properly.
The biggest difference between Wordpress and Blogger is the fact that you cannot add your own ads to a free wordpress blog. For those of you who are intent on making money with your blogging, you may not see how this is useful to you. And in some cases it may not be worth your time to start a Wordpress blog. Personally, I have found uses for it. I tend to use it for very specialized micro niche types of blogs. Mostly as a tool to generate backlinks and traffic to my money making blogs. As a big picture tool, it works wonders.
I am going to deviate from my topic for a quick moment to say. Building a presence on the internet requires you to build a spiders web of information in many different locations. Using a tunneled vision with your system to make money online, will cause blank spots. Areas where there are people that you are just not reaching. It is important to spread out. At least in my experience it is.
Free to use Tumblr Platform
Tumblr is unique. It is a blogging platform, yes, but it is geared more towards building links and giving blurbs instead of long, and educational posts. It is a place for you to drop a thought and add a link to expand on that thought. I have been using Tumblr off and on for a while now, trying to figure out how it fits into my personal plans, and what it has boiled down to for me is, something similar to a twitter. With occasionally writting longer posts about random things. I keep it casual and in the way of a place I will just randomly speak my mind or drop pictures. Usually including a link that I relate to the picture or though.
Of course you can write long and informative posts on Tumblr. And you may find better uses for it than I have. It is not going to give you the options and customization you can get with the other free platforms I have listed above, but it is easy to use. And has a fun quality about it.
I would think of it as an accompaniment to your larger blogs, and as a way to shout out what is on your mind or as a way to better let people understand you, away from any particular niche you may work in. It does not have the popularity of the bigger blogging platforms, but it does have a following.
And then there are the others....
Blog.com is a Wordpress rip-off. And serves the same purpose as Wordpress would to me in my system. It offers a place to make a Niche blog, free of Ads. You can pay for premium services which will give you the ability to add your own ads to your blog. But, my personal feelings are that if you want to place ads on your blog, your best bet is to use blogger, or your own hosted blog. Save Blog.com for backlinking and traffic generation.
Similar to blogger in a lot of ways to me. Don't personally use it. I have not found the need. They offer a premium service, that, to me, seems a bit pricey. You can ad your adsense to a free Yola site. It may be something to check out if you are trying to spread your web, so to speak.
Webs.com is a free website builder with a blog built in. The free services limit your space, and last time I used Webs.com, I could not add adsense to your site. There are other applications they offer though. Cafe Press, Etsy and donations, along with a webstore. Again this is all limited when you are using the free service.
Similar to Webs. Weebly is a website builder, but they allow you to include your Adsense code. This is always a bonus. They let you build a basic website with a blog also. This and Webs.com have a place for most, you will just need to learn how to incorporate the services offered to best suit your needs. We are mostly talking about free services here so there are of course some negatives with all of these products.
Have you found the best Blogging platform for you?
So, I really didn't go out of my way to really promote any particular platform here. There is a really good reason for that. Mostly because, if you are having trouble deciding on a blogging platform, it is most likely because you are new to the blogging world, and do not really know what step to take to get started.
So, I give it to you here. Try Blogger. It will give you the most options. It is the easiest to manipulate. And it will give you a good place to test yourself and to decide exactly what it is you are trying to accomplish by blogging. Blogging is a taxing and time consuming profession. Whether you use it to vent your oppinions or to try to earn a living on the internet. And you may find that it is not what you had hoped for. Blogger really is the best blogging site.
I feel that once you have created and built up a blogger blog, you now have the chance to broaden your horizons, this is when I would consider a Wordpress blog, as a companion blog to your blogger blog. As a way to create a Sub-niche off your primary site, to help drive new traffic and build new awareness of your online presence.
Sites like Tumblr, I feel, will serve people better if they are just blogging for fun. If they are just looking for a place to help define themselves on the internet, or as an advertisment tool for your other properties.
After that, the other, lesser known services will find a home later on, when you really start to refine your presence on the internet. They would be better used as specialty sites. And as another way to spread your web into new directions.
Hopefully this all makes sense, and I have not rambled aimlessly. I tend to do that from time to time!