In the span of a couple of decades, blogging has become one of the most respected ways to get your name out there. Blogs dominate an enormous chunk of the Internet, and millions of people read them. You probably even have one.
One of the biggest decisions you’ll make when starting down this road is your choice of blogging platform. You can either host your blog on your website or use a standalone blogging interface, like Google’s Blogger. Other new platforms, such as Medium and Svbtle, provide new takes on blogging and are becoming increasingly popular. They both offer a simplified layout and elegant design, which make it easy for anyone to start blogging. But are they worth it? There are definitely benefits to using these blogging platforms, but there are also drawbacks.
So which blogging platform is right for you? Read on to find out
Hosting your blog on your site
This option offers the most flexibility, especially in terms of design. A self-hosted WordPress site with a blog, for instance, is endlessly customizable. While you may have to pick up some technical knowledge, the payoff is huge.
By hosting your own blog, you also reap the benefits. Any traffic and SEO are directly related to your site. You get all the pageviews, and your rankings get boosted. There’s no middleman to go through. When readers subscribe to your blog, they’ll probably take a look at your site as well. So if you offer a service, like writing or editing, there’s a good chance you’ll get clients this way.
Blogging in this way gives you the most control. It’s great if you already have an online following or are able to generate one. If you want a customizable blogging platform and nearly unlimited power, this is the ideal option.
Standalone blog platforms
A blogging platform such as Blogger gives you a somewhat different experience. A significant upside of using these is the fact that you don’t have to be popular online. The blogging communities provide a place to share your work and get noticed.
Medium offers a particularly unique interface. Its content is curated and distributed via the home page, making it easy for normally obscure authors to reach a wide audience. And through the power of social media, it’s also easy to get your ideas spread across the Web. If your writing is great, you can start a blog today and potentially gain a following.
With these platforms, it’s possible that you’ll see reduced traffic to your own site. However, you don’t need to have any technical knowledge whatsoever. These blogging platforms come preloaded with well-designed themes, so you can focus all of your effort on writing. Though you might not always have the option for a custom domain or other features, there’s a chance you could get more exposure.
When choosing a blogging platform, there’s pros and cons to both options. Blogs that are hosted on sites are generally better for bloggers who can easily reach an audience. Standalone blogs are generally better for newer bloggers or those without technical knowledge.
That said, try both and see what you like better. You might find that one works better for your needs. Even if you have an established follower base, Medium might win you over with its minimalist design. And if you’re a new blogger, it may be more worthwhile to host a blog on your site. In the end, you’ll have to decide what’s right for you.
The bottom line: If you want power, customizability, and dedicated traffic, host your blog on your site. If you’re new to the blogging game and starting from the ground up, try a standalone blogging platform.