Blogging is a great way to keep your site at the top of search results pages. But, you’ll want to pick one of the best blog sites to make sure you have all the features you need which is no small feat when you see how many blogging platforms there are out there!
You’re in luck, though, because we put together a list of the best blogging platforms to make your decision a ton easier.
Want to know what it takes to make it onto this list?
What to Look for When Choosing the Best Blogging Platform
Blogging. It’s just putting words and images on the page, right? So, wouldn’t any blog site work? Do you really need the best blog sites?
Well, yeah. For example, WordPress.com doesn’t let you monetize your blog with affiliate marketing or using Google AdSense. So, if your goal is to make money blogging, you’ll want to make sure you choose a blogging platform that lets you earn the way you want.
Choosing the right platform up from is important; it might be very difficult to make a change later.
Here are a few things you’ll want to consider before signing up.
Why You’re Creating a Blog
People start blogs for a number of reasons:
- They want to demonstrate their authority in a certain area
- To make money blogging
- They want to keep a journal
- … and more
What’s your goal? Once you have a good understanding of your purpose, you can check the features of your chosen blogging platform to see if it will help you get there.
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Ease of Use
Beginner or not, you’ll want a blogging platform that’s easy to set up, use, and doesn’t require any coding skills. Plus, a shorter learning curve couldn’t hurt.
Think about not only where you are right now, but where you may need your blog to take you in the future. As your blog grows and gains more traffic, you might want to change up the look or add features that will dazzle your audience.
You don’t want it to take hours to figure things out.
Like we mentioned earlier if you think you might ever want to try to monetize your blog, pick a blog site that lets you do that. Don’t think that it’ll be a piece of cake to change platforms when you decide you’re ready to make money from your blog (because it won’t be).
Best Blog Sites in 2020
Here are the best blog sites we’ve found. Note that not all of them allow monetization. They also have varying ease of use.
Whatever your needs, you’ll find the best blogging platforms right here. All you need to do is pick the one that ticks all your boxes.
WordPress.org powers more than 30% of all websites on the internet. Yeah, it’s pretty popular.
WordPress.org is ridiculously extendable with more than 55,000 plugins that let you add features like image galleries, paid memberships, forums, contact forms, and more. Check out our guide on the best WordPress plugins for more details.
This is one of the best blog sites if you want to have control over every aspect of your site. There are thousands of free themes for WordPress, allowing you to create a gorgeous site in minutes.
WordPress is also search engine friendly. This means that it’s a breeze to create SEO-friendly URLs, tags, and categories for your posts.
WordPress is a free blogging platform, but you’ll need to pay for hosting (we recommend BlueHost) and a domain name (included with BlueHost hosting).
It has a large collection of templates that make it easy to customize your site’s design using the drag and drop interface. You’ll also get access to cool features like a custom logo maker and stock photo library, among other things.
There are some 3rd-party plugins for Constant Contact Website Builder, but given the small developer network, there aren’t nearly as many as for WordPress. Plus, moving your site away from Constant Contact to another platform is rough.
Constant Contact Website Builder is quick and easy to set up, especially since Constant Contact hosts your site for you. There’s also a pretty cool free plan that lets you try things out, and even build an online store, before committing.
A free domain and SSL certificate are included with all paid plans.
Constant Contact Website Builder has a free plan that lets you create a blog, business site, and an eCommerce store.
The Starter plan is $10/month and provides a free SSL certificate and free custom domain name, in addition to other powerful features.
With the Business plan ($20/month), you’ll get access to advanced eCommerce features.
The great thing about using Gator by HostGator to build and host your site is that backups, performance, and security are all handled by HostGator. So, you don’t have to worry about it!
Plus, it comes with a free domain and SSL certificate with all plans.
Gator doesn’t offer free accounts and eCommerce features are restricted to higher-end plans, but there is a 45-day money-back guarantee.
The Starter plan is $3.84/month and comes with everything you need to start a successful blog.
WordPress.com is a simple and easy to use blog hosting service offered by Automattic (the folks that created WordPress.org). You can create a basic blog and add limited plugins. If you need a custom domain name, more storage, or other services, you’ll have to purchase them separately.
This is a free option if you don’t mind having a WordPress.com subdomain (example.wordpress.com).
A basic WordPress.com account is free, but it’ll have WordPress branding and ads. Paid plans start at $4/month (billed yearly).
Blogger is Google’s free blogging service and it’s a quick, easy way for non-tech folks to start a blog. Plus, it’s been around forever… since 1999!
While Blogger is free, you’ll be limited to basic blogging tools, limited design options, and low-quality 3rd-party templates. If that doesn’t bother you, and you’re only looking for a simple blog site, then you’ll be building your blog on Google’s reliable and secure platform.
Blogger is free with a Blogspot subdomain (example.blogspot.com). If you want a custom domain, you’ll need to buy one.
Tumblr is a social media-meets-blogging platform. You can do cool things like reblogging and sharing, just to name a couple.
Tumblr is free with a Tumblr subdomain (example.tumblr.com) but you can also connect a custom domain name that you’ve purchased.
This is what is commonly called a “microblogging tool.” It makes it really easy to blog videos, images, audio, and GIFs.
Tumblr is free. You can purchase and use a custom domain as well as 3rd-party themes and apps.
Medium is an online community of writers, bloggers, and journalists. The platform is easy to use and has limited social networking features.
After signing up for Medium, you’ll have your own profile address (medium.com/yourusername), but you can’t use your own domain.
Since you won’t be hosting your blog on your own site, you don’t own your audience, Medium does. This means that if you lose your blog for some reason, you can say “buh-bye” to all your followers.
However, not running your own website might be appealing to some since it lets you focus on writing instead of everything that goes with having a site.
Medium is free to use.
Squarespace is one of the best website builders around. With it, you can create stunning sites easily using its drag and drop tools. Squarespace has many professionally-designed templates and works great for small businesses and beginners who aren’t super tech-savvy.
On the downside, Squarespace is a proprietary platform, so you’re limited to the features that are built-in. And, while there are integrations, they’re limited to a few services and tools.
Pricing for the Personal website plan starts at $12/month (annually). Business plan pricing starts at $18/month (annually).
If you want to set up your eCommerce store with Squarespace, pricing starts at $26/month and goes up to $40/month.
Wix is a hosted website platform that is a great solution for small businesses. You can also add a blog to your website with Wix Blog app.
Building your site with Wix is easy using its drag and drop tools. Plus, you can customize your site with dozens of templates and 3rd-party apps.
Wix offers a free account that includes a Wix subdomain (username.wixsite.com/example); it’s limited in features and shows Wix branding and ads on your site.
Take note, once you choose a template with Wix you can’t change it.
Free plan available. Add a custom domain for $4.50/month. Paid plans start at $8.50/month and go up to $24.50/month.
If you like that minimalist vibe, Ghost has you covered. It’s a minimalist blogging platform with features designed to keep you writing blog posts. As such, it has a clean, intuitive interface.
You can get Ghost as a hosted platform or as software you install and host yourself.
Ghost isn’t easy to customize with apps and doesn’t come with many themes to change your site’s appearance. And, if you go the self-hosted route, setup is a bit complicated.
With the self-hosted plan, you’re going to need a custom domain (around $15/year) and web hosting (roughly $8/month).
Pricing for the hosted plan starts at $29/month and includes 2 users with a 100K pageview limit. If you don’t want to buy a custom domain on your own, your blog will use a Ghost subdomain (username.ghost.io).
Weebly has an easy-to-use drag and drop builder that makes it really easy to build the website you want. And, all plans come with a free SSL certificate.
You can easily add a blog to your Weebly site as well as integrate an eCommerce storefront.
Despite its ease of use, Weebly has limited built-in features and limited integration with 3rd-party platforms. Plus, it’s hard to export Weebly to another platform should you decide to leave.
A limited free plan is available. To add a custom domain it will cost you $4/month. Also, to remove Weebly brand ads from your site, you’ll need to upgrade to the Starter plan for $8/month.
To build an eCommerce store, choose the Business plan for $25/month.
LiveJournal is another blog site that’s been around for a while. It’s essentially a social network where users keep a blog or journal, send and receive private messages, and join communities.
If you want the cool features like polls or image uploads, or to get rid of LiveJournal ads, you’ll want to upgrade to a paid plan.
LiveJournal doesn’t have professional templates and isn’t really suited for business or professional blogging. We included it on this list because of its enduring popularity.
LiveJournal only allows a basic blog with limited functionalities. A free plan is available.
Typepad is a blog site that requires a premium plan. However, you’ll have full control over monetization, as well as unlimited storage and personal support.
Typepad has thousands of templates available, making it easy to customize your blog’s appearance. It also integrations easily with Google Analytics and has built-in tools for search and social discovery.
Typepad is a hosted platform, so outside of the templates and built-in tools, it offers limited customization. It’s also a dedicated blogging platform so you won’t be able to add an eCommerce storefront.
There have also been concerns raised about the platform’s reliability ever since a DDoS attack took the entire platform down for 6 days in April 2014. The internet has a long memory.
Plans start at $8.95/month. If you want the freedom to create unlimited blogs, there’s the Unlimited plan for $14.95/month.
That’s all of our picks for the best blog sites and best blogging platforms in 2020. Did you find something you like? Let us know your pick in the comments!