If you’re looking to start a kick ass blog or website, we 100 percent believe WordPress should be your go platform.
WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems in the world (CMS) and hosts millions of the biggest sites online.
And with literally thousands of developers working day and night to develop some amazing plugins / resources you can build your site into virtually anything you want.
That being said, it’s not for everyone, and there are a few alternatives if you’re looking to get started with building your blog. The important thing is you get started.
It took me forever to get my blog up and running, and it was one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made in my online career. Don’t be that guy, or girl.
While we HIGHLY suggest people start with WordPress, here are a few places to get your site up and running if you decide to go with another provider.
[You can read 5 Reasons Your Blog Should Run On WordPress here.]
Wix is a stand alone, drag and drop, website builder. It’s used by thousands of small businesses and creative professionals around the world.
It’s pretty easy to get started, and they have a ton of in depth tutorials to help customize your site to your liking.
- As with some other WordPress Alternatives, Wix has built in hosting included in your plan, so they host both your domain and site all in one place, which is a nice feature to have if you get overwhelmed with technology.
- They also have hundreds of free themes that you can choose to get the perfect feel for your website.
- Drag and drop — If the word “coding” scares, Wix gives you piece of mind. Most of the design is done by simply dragging and dropping the content and media wherever you want it to go.
- Themes: While they do have a solid amount of theme options, some of them can be a bit “cookie cutter” in my opinion.
- Advanced features lacking – Due to the drag and drop style editing, Wix does lack some more advanced features, which might be an issue as your blog or website grows.
- Restrictions when it comes to content / marketing material
- A slight learning curve when starting your website.
Squarepsace is one of the newer WordPress alternatives, and it has received a very warm reception amongst creative professionals and small business owners. It is run by a top notch team and they are known for their unique marketing campaigns.
- Absolutely stunning themes and designs, your site will definitely look fresh and professional.
- Super easy to get up and running, intuitive user interface and great tutorials.
- Simple (transparent pricing) — no confusing charges.
- A little bit pricer than some of it’s competitors, which could be a deal breaker.
- Lacks some advanced blogging features, though they continue to improve on a regular basis.
- Limited apps / plugins. While there are some plugins functionality, they aren’t as versatile as WordPress.
Medium was built by one of the cofounders of Twitter and has one of the best user interfaces around. When it comes to just writing, Medium is top dog. They also have a very engaged readership that helps get your content seen if you’re just starting out.
- Built in social discovery /subscribers – your work will be visible to a relatively large audience right off the bat. Content has the chance to go viral.
- Dead simple writing – If you enjoy writing, Medium is one of the best places to do that. The editor is fantastic, and very minimalistic , allowing you to focus on what matters.
- Great design – Everything on Medium was built with a great eye for design, the user interface is easy and simple to use.
- The biggest con, is that you don’t own your content. If Medium decides to shut down tomorrow, you lose everything.
- Medium could eventually decide to introduce ads.
- Lots of Competition – Because anyone can publish on Medium, it’s very difficult to make a name for yourself, outside some organic views.
Tumblr is one of the most popular “blogging” platforms around. That being said, as far building a sustainable business or website, we don’t recommend Tumblr as an option. However, if you’re looking to just share thoughts as a hobby it could be a great and easy way to get up and running.
- Super easy to get started. Like really.
- Media friendly – Easy to share virtually any kind of content, GIFS, Images, Lyrics, Videos etc.
- Social discovery – Tumblr is one of the most popular social networks in the world, so there is large audience that can discover your content.
- Not considered a “serious” blogging platform.
- Mostly known for images/gifs.
- Serious lack of advanced functionality that other alternatives have.
If you’re looking to build an online business Shopify is a fantastic option. It’s especially focused on online stores. Shopify also has an incredible community of entrepreneurs for business advice and strategy.
- Top of the line resource for running an online store
- Incredible support – The Shopify team wants you to succeed and their support team / resources are their to help you grow your online business.
- Lots of contests, and helpful business articles.
- Depending on your plan, percentage of online sales.
- Focused mainly on online stores, which might not fit your needs.
- Design is somewhat lacking when it comes to themes.
Like it’s competitor, Wix, Weebly brands itself as a stand alone drag and drop editor, which can make building the site relatively easy.
- Super easy to use. Up and running in minutes.
- Professional, responsive sites. Your site will look clean and reader friendly.
- Fully customized layouts – Helps you get up and running quickly by in depth templates.
- Designs can be a bit boring. They get the job done, but not all “stand out.”
- Limited customization options. Unlike some of the other alternatives, you can’t customize everything.
- Slow to introduce new features. Weebly has improved in this regard, but new features are often hard to come by.