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The 8 best website builders for blogs in 2021

Many website builders have been initially designed for blogs. That is smart—usually, writers choose to easily get to publishing immediately with content material that’s clear and readable, and pouring assets right into a flashy website might be unproductive. In spite of everything, the content material is supposed to talk for itself, not some gimmicky design. And the excellent news is, today you don’t have to select between design high quality and a shortly constructed website for a weblog. There are many nice template choices accessible, and we’ve collected our prime picks for the best website builders for blogs.

For the uninitiated: a website builder is a service that lets you create and customise a website with out writing any code. All you need to do is make an account with the service, reply some questions on your website wants and targets, select a template, customise the design with the platform’s proprietary editor, pay and launch.

Illustration of a blogger working on a laptop to create her website
Design by OrangeCrush

As a result of most website builders perform equally and there are such a lot of round now, it may be troublesome to know which alternative is correct for you. On prime of that, many website builders are supposed to enchantment to all kinds of website wants, that means you additionally must analysis whether or not a builder is right for running a blog particularly. With that in thoughts, let’s get the particular issues it is best to look for when buying for website builders for blogs.

What to look for in a website builder for a weblog

Does it cowl the complete internet growth course of?

Most website builders will invoice themselves as a one-stop store (and a lot of the main ones are), nevertheless it’s a good suggestion to confirm this for your self. Overview the steps to create a website and double examine that the builder will deal with each. For instance, one builder we’ll focus on later requires you to safe your personal internet hosting.

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Mascot illustration of a construction worker
Constructing a website is fortunately a lot simpler today than constructing a home. Design by scorpy

Does it have sufficient blog-specific options?

Blogs have particular wants {that a} normal function website builder may not account for. Particularly, you need to evaluate options like assigning authors, tagging/classes, how formatting multimedia works, e-mail seize, scheduled posting, social distribution, website positioning instruments like alternate titles and descriptions, remark moderation, and visitors analytics. You’ll additionally need to think about how simple it’s to combine third-party functions that fill in characteristic gaps you may want down the road.

What does the pricing embody?

The enchantment of website builders is that they’re often on the cheaper facet, nevertheless it’s not all the time that straightforward. Many website builders could have quite a lot of (usually subscription) pricing tiers that include particular options and advantages—all of which you have to to match completely. Pay particular consideration to advantages which might be included on some platforms and ignored on others.

Will the builder’s model intrude by yourself?

Whereas there’s no disgrace in utilizing a website builder (loads of excessive profile blogs, as we’ll see, achieve this) you don’t essentially need it telegraphed to your readers at each flip. If you’re reviewing some precise blogs made with the software program, be looking out for distinguished signatures (e.g. “Powered by website-builder-name”) or necessary subdomains (e.g. “websitebuilder.businessname.com”).

Does it sacrifice high quality for ease of use?

Many website builders delight themselves on being simple to make use of, however this isn’t all the time the perk that you simply assume it’s. For instance, technically the simplest website to construct is an unedited template. Any diploma of customization necessitates some effort in your half, and better levels of customization could imply a tougher constructing course of, which might be price it. You additionally need to think about how simple the continued web site upkeep course of shall be, in addition to including new content material to your weblog.

Abstract illustration of a person working on a laptop
Remember to do your analysis earlier than selecting a website builder. Illustration by mspasova

What do customers say concerning the service?

Look into opinions by atypical individuals (which is to say, not the glowing testimonials corporations spotlight on their website). You could find opinions for digital companies on websites like Trustpilot and Sitejabber. There, in fact, shall be some damaging ones, however take note of the general mixture. Additionally it is useful to notice how an organization’s assist workers responds to damaging opinions.

What’s the design high quality like?

With website builders, you have to to judge the standard of each the templates and the ultimate, revealed product. For templates, what you’re looking for isn’t solely fairly designs however a large and numerous choice. When reviewing precise blogs constructed with the software program, attempt to avoid the well-known blogs the positioning builder promotes. Take a look at blogs made by the common customers to see how these evaluate to their templates.

The best website builders for blogs

  1. WordPress.org
  2. Webflow
  3. Wix
  4. Squarespace
  5. Substack
  6. Medium
  7. Weebly
  8. Blogger

WordPress.org

For a free, open source platform, WordPress is likely one of the most extremely customizable and widely-used website builders round. In actual fact, a staggering 35% of all web sites on the Web run on WordPress (together with our very personal weblog!). It’s so versatile that it’s usually forgotten WordPress began primarily as a running a blog platform. Now everybody from Rolling Stone Journal to the White Home is constructed on WordPress.

Screenshot of the WordPress’s blog themes

WordPress.org (to not be confused with the paid .com model) basically offers you a clean web page on which to construct your web site, and the DIY nature of the platform could make beginning a weblog extra daunting. As a website builder, it permits for practically limitless customization, offered you’ve got the coding data and design savvy to execute it.

You do must work out a number of of your personal options together with internet hosting (BlueHost is beneficial). However WordPress additionally consists of third-party instruments (referred to as plugins, loads of that are free) that may make this simpler, offering templates, analytics, and extra. All the identical, WordPress isn’t for the faint of coronary heart, so that you’re going to need to dedicate a good period of time to tutorials and studying earlier than getting began.

Take a look at our information to utilizing WordPress >>

Professionals

  • Superior customization choices
  • Loads of assist in the best way of tutorials and consumer boards
  • Can assist complicated web sites/options

Cons

  • Not instantly intuitive
  • Can require fundamental HTML and coding data

Worth

  • Free
  • ~$15 monthly for area/internet hosting
  • Variable for plugins

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

WordPress is nice for a dependable, long-running weblog the place you need extra customization choices than your common builder. However if you’re a newbie wanting for one thing quick and straightforward, it isn’t the best choice.

Webflow

Webflow is a web site builder that goals to make working with code simpler by visuals. Rather than templates and themes, Webflow prioritizes its web page editor, the place you possibly can construct a website utterly from scratch utilizing actual HTML and CSS properties in a graphical interface. Consequently, this will make Webflow a lot more durable to make use of if you’re not accustomed to the fundamentals of front-end growth, although the positioning has loads of academic assets. And in comparison with WordPress, Webflow’s interface is way less complicated to make use of whereas nonetheless permitting for practically limitless customization.

(*8*)
by way of Webflow

On the running a blog entrance, Webflow gives CMS (content material administration system) templates, which basically present a framework for storing and organizing your content material. It additionally boasts simple on-page modifying, versus the back-end interfaces WordPress makes use of.

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Professionals

  • Excessive diploma of customization
  • Superior editor capabilities
  • Academic assets and assist

Cons

  • Common function web site builder
  • Steeper studying curve

Worth

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

Webflow is a superb decide when you have an internet design background and need much more management over the look of your website with out the various workarounds and plugins that WordPress requires.

Wix

Wix prides itself on being an easy-to-use template web site builder, nevertheless it additionally has various customization choices accessible in its extremely versatile editor. There’s even a mode that lets you work together with your web site’s code for those who so select (in fact, for those who’re going to all that bother, WordPress would offer you far more flexibility).

Wix’s blog template selection page
by way of Wix

Primarily, you should utilize Wix certainly one of two methods. You can begin with a template and use a drag-and-drop editor to customise every element. Or you possibly can have the positioning constructed for you with the assistance of robots—that’s to say, Wix’s Synthetic Design Intelligence (ADI). The ADI path makes use of a questionnaire to know your wants and generate tailor-made design choices for you.

Like many website builders, Wix is actually a one-stop store. You’ll be able to arrange a normal function website, add a weblog, an internet retailer, get internet hosting and even get a readymade brand. Wix’s templates for blogs include views and like counters in addition to feedback—attributes which some weblog builders don’t embody.

Professionals

  • Massive choice of templates
  • Nice editor capabilities
  • Synthetic intelligence instruments

Cons

  • Common function web site builder
  • Storage is proscribed in pricing

Worth

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

For a template-based website builder, Wix gives quite a bit in the best way of customization. Its ADI performance makes it particularly helpful for non-designers or individuals who may get overwhelmed with too many customization choices however nonetheless need one thing tailor-made to them.

Squarespace

In case you’ve ever listened to a podcast or simply been awake at any time in the previous few years, you’ve heard about Squarespace. It’s most likely probably the most well-known and broadly marketed website builder on the market. It really works like all of them, utilizing templates and a proprietary editor. In terms of template customization, there are particular builders that offer you extra freedom. However it additionally boasts its Circle program, which can provide you entry to actual internet designers utilizing Squarespace—actually a step up from Wix’s robots.

Squarespace blog template selection page
by way of Squarespace

The place Squarespace actually shines is its template choice. It has a number of the most fantastically designed templates in the website builder house, a number of of which have been featured on Awwwards. In different phrases, when you have the power to customise your template, you seemingly gained’t must.

Professionals

  • Stunning choice of templates
  • Quick access to actual designers

Cons

  • Common function web site builder
  • Remark moderation consists of an on/off change

Worth

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

Flip to Squarespace if you’re wanting for type above all, in addition to a straightforward internet design expertise.

Substack

Technically, Substack markets itself as a e-newsletter platform, nevertheless it is likely one of the quickest rising stars in the blogosphere. And to be sincere, the distinction between a weblog and a e-newsletter will get into hairsplitting. Whereas Substack targets readers by e-mail, it additionally collects these newsletters chronologically as posts on the writer’s profile web page—you understand, like a weblog.

Substack homepage
by way of Substack

A lot of its reputation has to do with the way it incentivizes readers to pay for high quality writing by normalizing subscription charges (which writers can select to cost). It is a good pattern of giving again to content material creators that platforms like Patreon have paved the best way for. On the similar time, realistically that is solely going to be helpful if you have already got a big established viewers. Given the recognition of recurring subscription companies like Netflix, your common reader goes to be cautious of including yet one more one—for written content material, of all issues—except you might be significantly well-known.

Additionally it is price a point out that Substack offers you an account web page—similar to all others—inside its personal platform as customized design isn’t actually the purpose.

Professionals

  • Substack readers are accustomed to subscription pricing
  • Helps writers construct e-mail lists

Cons

  • Restricted branding capabilities
  • Subscription pricing isn’t helpful with out a big viewers

Worth

  • Free
  • $50 one-time payment for customized area

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

Whereas it may not be the best platform to construct a readership, it may be an ideal house to transition to determine a paywall when you do.

Medium

Medium is a running a blog platform that permits writers to faucet into an current neighborhood of readers. Primarily, customers are divided into readers or writers on the platform. Readers are following matters that they’re in, and writers tag their content material with matters that match. On this manner, Medium’s algorithm suggests content material to readers, selling your articles for you.

Medium homepage
by way of Medium

Medium additionally boasts curators—actual people who find themselves wanting for standout articles to characteristic prominently beneath a particular matter. The best half about Medium is that it has a partnership program just like YouTube, the place content material creators are paid primarily based on components equivalent to reads or claps (their model of likes) as soon as they’ve netted a excessive sufficient variety of followers.

On the design entrance, apart from customizing your personal imagery and brand, you’re just about caught with Medium’s default branding.

Professionals

  • Nice for constructing an viewers
  • Monetization primarily based on readership

Cons

  • Restricted branding capabilities
  • Plugins and integrations usually are not properly supported

Worth

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

Medium could be a nice place to begin for writers to get their work in entrance of an viewers and construct up a readership.

Weebly

Weebly is a normal function website builder very like its rivals Squarespace and Wix. What units it aside is essentially its intuitive editor—Weebly is a kind of instruments that feels particularly designed for non-designers.

Weebly’s blog theme selection page
by way of Weebly

It additionally has an App Middle that features very like WordPress’s plugins. This not solely simplifies the editor by separating extraneous and doubtlessly irrelevant options, nevertheless it additionally has a number of distinctive apps for blogs.

Professionals

  • Extraordinarily simple to make use of
  • Cheaper than competitor web site builders
  • A number of plugin apps can be found

Cons

  • Common function web site builder
  • Restricted customization instruments

Worth

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

What Weebly lacks in templates and customization, it makes up for in ease-of-use and app plugins. Take into account Weebly if you wish to customise your template however don’t need to break your mind doing so.

Blogger

Because the identify suggests, Google’s Blogger is likely one of the progenitors of DIY running a blog, having launched through the web’s stone age in 1999. With age comes expertise—Blogger now hosts thousands and thousands of blogs, and it has remained simply as handy to make use of.

Blogger homepage
by way of Blogger

Additionally it is utterly free. In actual fact, you’ll discover that when you have a Gmail account you have already got entry to Blogger from the identical dropdown housing Google’s different apps (equivalent to Docs and Calendar). It additionally integrates simply with Google Analytics and AdSense, that means you possibly can arrange cost by advert income. You’ll be able to’t beat that type of comfort.

Comfort, nonetheless, is concerning the best factor Blogger has going for it. Within the 20+ years since its launch, loads of rivals have sprung up that make Blogger’s design themes and lack of website customization really feel dated. Being such a big, free platform, it additionally lacks a lot in the best way of assist, outdoors of its FAQ assist heart. However Blogger was envisioned as a technique to begin publishing on the Web immediately without charge, and it nonetheless accomplishes this purpose exceptionally properly.

Professionals

  • Best weblog to arrange
  • Integrates simply with Google apps
  • Platform is devoted to running a blog

Cons

  • Theme choice isn’t as spectacular
  • Isn’t ideally suited for different website pages outdoors of the weblog

Worth

  • Free
  • ~$10 per 12 months for a customized area

Ability degree

Actual blogs that use this platform

The backside line

Blogger stays an ideal alternative for private or hobbyist blogs, being free and easy to start out up. Whereas it does include lots of Google’s instruments built-in, you’re higher off going elsewhere for those who want one thing extra subtle.

The closing phrase on weblog builders

Website builders enable writers to get right down to what issues: the precise writing. In spite of everything, filling a weblog with common content material is nerve-racking sufficient that you simply don’t need to spend an excessive amount of of your vitality simply setting issues up.

On the similar time, it might be a disgrace in case your stellar content material was missed as a result of an unattractive weblog. Whereas many website builders do present each high quality and pace, many are finally templates—utilized by many different blogs throughout the online. So if you’re prepared for that further skilled design contact, think about contracting a contract internet designer.

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