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Is WordPress Still the Best Blogging Platform?

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Is Wordpress still the best blogging platform?
I’ve been seeing a lot of naysayers of WordPress these days. Things like how WordPress isn’t the way to start a blog in 2021 is floating around. A few of these are almost laughable. For example, one person recently shared how somebody with a HubSpot blog makes 500+ every month… How? They don’t say.

HubSpot is just another blogging platform, kind of like WordPress or Squarespace, but with limited features and functionalities. Also, nobody blogging on HubSpot (or on any of the popular blogging CMS) makes money without taking measures to actually monetize their blog. It’s not magic.

They’re likely using advertisements or affiliate marketing. But this person is making it sound as if the blogging platform itself is making the money! If someone read their article without knowing what WordPress or HubSpot is, they’d think the platform helps make money. Like Medium or something. Tomfoolery at its best.

We’ll get to Medium, but let me first debunk a few misconceptions.

A tool doesn’t make you money, but it can make life as a money-making blogger or content creator a bit easier

WordPress is a tool. So is HubSpot, or Squarespace. What makes money isn’t the tool. It’s your content (assuming you’re a blogger) and how you leverage your content to sell something—be that an online course, a workshop, coaching or consultation services, or affiliate products. So, the first rule to choosing a good tool is to consider which tool is right for your intended tasks.

I’ll give you an example. Let’s say that you’re trying to create a gallery wall in your house. You have the pictures and paintings framed and all. Now you have to put some nails on the wall and hang the frames. So you grab your nails, and as you look for a hammer, you realize you don’t have one. What do you do? Let’s say you grab a really heavy and thick, hardcover, Merriam-Webster’s dictionary. You get the job done, but it takes five times longer and a bit of wrist and shoulder aches to accompany you for the next few weeks.

That book got the job done but it wasn’t easy. It was obviously not the right tool for the job.

And now imagine you’re trying to figure out what “Glockenspiel” means and all you have is a hammer…

Yeah, I’m not good with metaphors but I’m sure you know what I’m trying to say.

Right tool for the right job.

I and pretty much all pro bloggers use and recommend WordPress for a reason. It’s the best blogging tool out there. Not only is this platform powerful, but it’s something that grows with you. When I first started my blog, my only means of income from it was affiliate marketing. I used (and still do) a nifty little free plugin called ThirstyAffiliates to organize all my affiliate links. If one of my affiliate companies suddenly changes their affiliate links on me? (Which happened more times than I’d like, FYI.) No worries. All I have to do is change the link inside ThirstyAffiliate settings and boom! Done! I didn’t have to dig out every single instance where I had used the link and manually change each and every one of them. Instead, the plugin does it for me with just a click.

Compared to back then, I now have way too many earning avenues—online courses, affiliate marketing, a digital [Canva] template shop, one-on-one consultations, etc. And my WordPress platform has grown with my growing business, without having to move this entire blog somewhere else. From the beginning, I had my WordPress set up with the SiteGround hosting company, and I haven’t questioned my choices once!

For me, WordPress has proved to be the correct and the best tool for the job.

Back in the days when I used to freelance, I often had blogger clients who would want to move their blog from Squarespace or Wix to WordPress because they’d often hit a wall. They’d need to implement a feature or functionality and their platform didn’t have it. And what do we know about WordPress? It’s that we can do pretty much anything on this platform. An online shop? Check. A forum? Check. Courses? Check. Bookings and scheduling? Check. Memberships and subscriptions? Check!

 The reason we love WordPress isn’t that it is easy, or it is painless, or because you can set it up once and forget about it. No.  We love this platform because it’s the only platform (to date) that grows with your growing business.

But WordPress isn’t always the best tool

There was a time a few years ago when a photographer signed up for a consultation, and I actually advised her to move her website from WordPress to Squarespace. She then ended up hiring me for the move as well.

The reason was that her main business was the photography business. She did blog once or twice a month, and that brought some clients to her. But at the end of the day, she neither had a desire nor the aspirations to create a content business. She was a photographer at heart and blogging was just a hobby on the side. The only thing she needed from her website was a contact form and a portfolio of her work.

She didn’t need a WordPress site. She needed something that she could set up once and forget about.

WordPress wasn’t for her. But turned out Squarespace would do the job just as well and without the headache of having to maintain the new software updates or plugin updates or optimizing for speed and performance periodically.

So, what about Medium or some other creator program?

The naysayers I mentioned earlier were all singing a similar tune.

Basically, start a blog with Medium (or some other platform like HubSpot or Ghost)—that’s the way to go in 2021!

These are catchphrases. Or the contrarian approach to most blogging advice out there.

Don’t get me wrong, old advice needs to be updated, I’m with you on that. But to simply make a statement without context is just irresponsible.

HubSpot or Ghost or Squarespace aren’t superior to WordPress. Far from it.

Medium isn’t superior to WordPress, far from it.

But depending on what you’re trying to do, it is possible that you may not need a superior tool.

Are you just trying to get your words out there? Are you trying to figure out if you even enjoy writing or not? If that’s where you are, then, by all means, set up an account with Medium and try writing for a couple of months to see if it’s for you.

Hate niche? You’re a writer at heart and need just a few hundred bucks every month with your words? Don’t want to use Pinterest or social media to promote your posts? Hate ads and affiliate marketing and wish someone paid you just for typing up words? Sure, Medium may be the way to go.

Do you like to play journalist? Want to hang out with a camera on weekends and review local restaurants and shops? Have you considered signing up for Newsbreak?

So yeah, whether or not WordPress is right for you is a loaded question and it can never be as simple an answer as a “yes” or a “no”. Those who’re doing that are either misleading you or they have no idea what they’re talking about.

Do yourself a favor and don’t listen to naysayers. Don’t jump on or off the popular bandwagon for all the wrong reasons. The contrarian approach works only when there’s data to back up said approach. You don’t want to be the anti-vaxxer who buys Ivermectin, do you? Just be smart and get the actual COVID vaccine instead.

And yes, I totally inserted an agenda there, but you know what? I don’t care!

Anyhow, my point is, WordPress is still the best blogging platform if your goal is to make a few grand per month from your content business through multiple income streams. But if you’re not going to use the tool, and you just want to blog as a hobby or want to make a couple of hundred bucks at best, then a lesser tool may be sufficient for you.

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Maliha
Maliha
Maliha created The Side Blogger as an experiment to see if turning a blog into a profitable business was a possibility for moonlighting side bloggers. Turned out, it is! Learn more about Maliha and TSB here. If you've found this blog helpful, you can support TSB here.
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