If you are considering starting your own blogging business, yay you! This is such an exciting step into the digital world. The first step to starting a blog is to do a bit of research and determine which platform is going to work well for you.
Before you start building your website, you might be tempted to rush and get started without knowing much about different platforms and why WordPress.org is better than other options.
Starting your blog right from the beginning will save you stress and money later down the road. When it comes to earning money from your blog, WordPress is the platform to choose.
As a blogger, I discovered this the hard way after publishing lots of valuable content on my Shopify website. As I learned more about earning an income from blogging, I realised that I had made things difficult for myself.
So, I moved my website Makylacreates.com to WordPress.
In this blog post I want to share with you 5 reasons I believe it was such a great move, and I’m super keen for you to avoid the hassles I experienced!
So, you may be wondering why WordPress is the most suitable platform for your blog to be published on? As I explain later in this article, advertising and flexibility are the main reasons.
Advertising could be your main source of income, along with brand partnerships and affiliate marketing. Let’s take look at 5 reasons why WordPress is the best blogging platform in 2023.
- Customise and build your own website
- WordPress can grow with your blogging business
- You control your website
- Choose your own hosting
- The option to streamline your business
1. Customise and build your own website
You might be tempted to try building your own website with a website builder like Squarespace or Wixx so it will look pretty in a few hours. Even though this is helpful, it may cause you major headaches in the future if you need to move to WordPress for growth or to make an income from blogging.
If you use a website builder your content cannot be easily transferred over to WordPress without losing some data and most importantly, your keyword ranking. If you would like to learn more about keywords and why they are critical for any business check out Shania’s blog What is keyword research(SEO)?(How do I use it for my website).
Several successful bloggers have talked about how transferring content between platforms can severely hurt your Google ranking, and now that I’ve experienced this, I understand the warning.
However, you don’t need to learn the hard way. If you start off using WordPress to blog, you can avoid the hassles so many bloggers have learned the hard way.
When you first install WordPress it looks a bit dull. Kind of like a blank canvas. It’s up to you to create your design. But don’t let the freedom of WordPress put you off using it. Having the patience to learn your way around WordPress will benefit you in the long run.
Despite WordPress' 'ugly' appearance on first install, its powerful features make it a fantastic platform for building a website. If you purchase themes from incredible web designers, you will be able to get a beautiful website more quickly and more affordably than if you paid for a custom design.
Restored 316 has developed a range of beautiful feminine themes, designed for bloggers and shop owners. Check out Lauren's designs. This is an upfront investment but it's 100% worth it.
Thrive Themes offer fantastic website themes along with amazing page templates for sales pages, funnels, sign-up forms. We use WordPress with a Thrive Theme, along with various templates on Sharyn’s website Excel at Work.
2. WordPress can grow with your blogging business
You can easily grow your business with WordPress. Often, people don't consider how things may grow over time when they start a new venture.
When your blog starts growing and reaching more readers every year, you'll find yourself learning about various tools and software that can help you accomplish these goals.
With WordPress, you can add a variety of free or paid plugins, integrate your website with other services such as email, and even edit the HTML code. This lets you customise your website to your needs.
When your blog reaches 50,000 monthly views, you can join an ad network like Mediavine to earn an income from it.
Ads are displayed to your readers as they visit your site, and they can interact with them or ignore them.
Depending on how many readers visit your site or click through to the advertiser's site, Mediavine will pay you a monthly payment.
You can check out the Mediavine paid ads on our Excel at Work website. At the time of writing, this one income stream was generating just over $3,000 a month for us.
This income can grow quickly especially if your audience continues to grow. However, making an income from advertising can be challenging if you use a builder site.
You may not be able to earn money from ads because many ad networks can't add code or plugins to these site builders. If they can, it could slow down your site causing ranking issues or poor user experience.
For easy growth in the future, successful bloggers advise new bloggers to begin on WordPress.
3. You control your website
What do I mean by this? If you use a website platform like Squarespace, they control the limitations of your website. You might want to add a sidebar to your blog pages, but it isn't possible with your current theme.
For example, if you are a food blogger and you want your audience to save their favourite recipes, you could add a search system like Slickstream to your website. However, Slickstream is not compatible with all website builders.
When a website is up and running, people often run into these very frustrating issues.
Another pitfall is not checking if your website integrates with other software. You might decide a few months down the track to integrate your email marketing system with your website.
However, you might discover that your website hosting platform does not integrate with them, or you need to pay a monthly fee of $20USD to do so...not ideal, is it??
These small fees can begin to add up and may not be an area you wish to invest in at the beginning of your blogging business.
There are thousands of plugins available for WordPress that you can download and add to your website, many of which are free. WordPress plugins have become popular thanks to 455 million websites using the open-source platform as of 2021, according to Envisage Digital.
4. Choose your own hosting
Let’s chat about website hosting. You can decide who hosts your website and how much you are willing to pay, so it can be very affordable or very expensive.
Something to be aware of is that site speed is a major ranking factor for Google so don’t discard your hosting as not that important.
When you sign up to a website builder your site will be hosted by them. When you use WordPress, you need to organise your own website hosting. My biggest advice is to try and give yourself a reasonable budget for this area of your business.
Website hosting is important for your site to load quickly so readers don’t exit your site quickly. These readers are your audience and will help your blogging business grow. If you have no readers, you won’t be making any money.
Our favourite and most trusted website hosting platforms are Site Ground and Big Scoots. They both provide incredible customer service, security, site hosting and pricing, and they will setup your WordPress site for you too.
Shared Vs Managed WordPress Hosting
I didn't understand the difference between shared and managed hosting when I was choosing my website hosting, so let's explore both.
The term shared server refers to hosting your website on a server that is shared with other websites. A single server may host three, five, or even ten websites.
It means that your website loading time is shared with other websites on the Internet.
An increase in traffic on another website could slow down your website's loading time.
If you are just starting out, shared hosting is a great option because it’s low cost while you build up your audience. When your website starts receiving substantial traffic, you can move to managed hosting.
A managed server is a server dedicated exclusively to your website. You don’t share with any other websites so when you choose to move to a managed server you will probably see an increase in your websites speed.
When I moved over to my own server my website speed increased instantly. This isn’t always the case but it’s worth finding out!
5. The option to Use Plugins to streamline your business
Plugins allow you to integrate additional software onto your website, such as email services, recipe cards, how-to cards, social sharing buttons, and payment carts.
Plugins are a big part of WordPress, and many of them can help streamline your business. By streamlining as many tasks as possible, you will have more time to spend writing and with your family.
There are thousands of WordPress plugins available, some of which are free and some of which are paid.
You may find that you cannot find the plugins you need or that they cost a monthly fee when you build your website on another platform, e.g. Shopify.
We all get burned out if we try to do too much in our blogging business. Streamlining is vital for staying on top of everything. To accomplish your goals, you don't need to do it on your own, when there are amazing tools available to you when using WordPress.
To Sum Up
As you can see, WordPress is a powerful website builder that enables you to grow your blogging business the way you envision. By using a reliable web hosting service, ready-made themes, and plugins, you can customize your blog to suit your business’s needs when you start out, and into the future.