Best Free Blogging Platforms Of 2018: 2018 has been a great year in many ways, blogging-wise I mean 😀
Among other things that I did and learnt about blogging in 2018 was my adventurous trip to various blogging platforms. I took a little break from WordPress and explored other platforms – both free and paid.
At the end, I came back to WordPress.
Nevertheless, I loved some of the free blogging platforms that I had never used before, and I think I am going to use at least one or two of them. I liked a few paid platforms/plans as well, but they are not as good as WordPress.
Anyway, now that I have used and experienced other platforms other than WordPress and Blogger, I guess I can write an article on best free blogging platforms of 2018.
This post is about the best free blogging platforms of 2018. Read on to find out.
Best Free Blogging Platforms Of 2018
Although free blogging platform isn’t something I would recommend to any one who wants to become a professional blogger, there are some advantages of using them. Some of them are as under:
- You don’t need much of technical knowledge to run and maintain a free blog.
- If you are a beginner, free platforms are a great place to start with. You will get to learn a lot of new things.
- If you are a good writer, you can definitely get noticed by various publishers and the likes.
- Some free blogging platforms, like Medium, are a great place to promote yourself and your self-hosted blog.
Considering all these aspects and many more, the best free blogging platforms of 2018 are as under:
Medium, Where Words Matter
Of all free blogging platforms, I found Medium the most elegant and classy one.
Medium is the brainchild of Evan Williams, former CEO of Twitter and founder of Blogger.
Its clean and slick look and the easy to use interface makes it the best free blogging platform. What I really like about Medium is that how both amateur and professional writers have embraced this platform.
Some of the features of Medium are as under:
- You don’t have to worry about the design. That’s a blessing and a curse at the same time. Blessing, because Medium is classy and clean with enough white space, making it easier to read. Curse because all Medium blogs look the same. But if you have designing skills, you can still give a unique look to your Medium blog with images, following a certain style of your own.
- If you are looking for instant readership, Medium is the place for you and you don’t even have to know SEO for it. Yet, well written Medium blogs appear in search results. Basically, reaching out to readers of similar interests is easy with Medium. Because of this, I feel promoting your self-hosted blog on Medium is a great idea as you will be able to re-direct the readers from Medium to your blog. It’s like a blog outside your official blog.
- You can publish blog from your account, just like you post something from your Facebook account. At the same time, Medium provides this feature called Publications, with which you can create and maintain your own multi-authored blog.
- You don’t need any technical knowledge to set up, run and manage your Medium blog. Also, you don’t have to think about hosting, updates and backups.
- You can follow other Publications and writers.
- With Medium’s Tags, you can categorize your articles.
- One of the disadvantages of Medium is that there is no option to get a custom-domain name. Nor can you run ads on it. Users of selected countries, however, can earn by writing on Medium. The earnings are based on the number of Claps you get on a particular article. Claps are like Upvotes on Quora or Likes on Facebook. So, if you are blogging to earn money, Medium has not much to offer you when to comes to monetizing your blog, not directly, at least. But it is a great platform to build your brand and establish yourself as a writer.
Tumblr comes second in my list. I feel it’s really a cool platform that, in many, ways bear similarity with Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. It is extremely easy to set up and manage a Tumblr blog.
Some of its features are as under:
- Unlike Medium, Tumblr provides a wide range of designs. Although many of them are paid, at least there is this option to experiment with designs.
- You can get a custom domain name on Tumblr.
- One of the most amazing features of Tumblr is that you can add any type of content, be it text, quotes, images, GIFs, audio or video. This itself gives the opportunity to make your blog more interactive and interesting.
- You don’t need any kind of technical knowledge to use Tumblr. But if you want, you can edit the HTML code of your blog’s theme. As for hosting, updates and backups, you don’t have to worry about it.
- Another advantage of Tumblr is that it allows you to run ads.
- Tumblr too allows users to categorize their content using Tags.
The free WordPress.com site comes third in my list mainly because I learnt a lot about blogging from here. WordPress.com has many disadvantages, especially for those who are serious about blogging and want to monetize their blog. But there is no denying to the fact that it’s a great platform for beginners who want to move on to self-hosted WordPress blog eventually. Some of the features of WordPress.com are as under:
- Like Medium and Tumblr, with WordPress.com too, you don’t have to worry about hosting, backups, updates, etc. Also, it is easy to use, not as easy and simple as Medium though. That’s a good thing for serious bloggers who want to host their own site.
- There are plenty of free themes which are of great quality.
- It allows you to run ads through WordAds but you have to drive very high traffic for it. Also, you will have to share the revenue with WordPress.
- The biggest disadvantage of WordPress.com is that to have additional features, like SEO, plugins, etc. you have to move to one of the paid plans which are very expensive. Nevertheless, I like WordPress.com because of what I learnt with it.
I like Wix because of the quality design options it offers. And you can drag and drop to modify the look of your website. It is easy to use; not as easy as Medium, but definitely easier than WordPress.com. The paid plans are not as expensive as WordPress.com and offers more options. Wix is especially a great platform for creative people who want to share their art, photography, and other works.
Despite being outdated in many aspects, I include Blogger in my list, mainly because of its simplicity. It is extremely easy to use and manage, easier than WordPress.com and even Wix. It has many limitations, like Blogger offers a very limited number of themes which are not at all professional-looking, it doesn’t support plugins, the anti-spam measures are very weak, limited support, no image galleries or option to upload videos… The list goes on. But then again, compared to other free blogging platforms, it has many advantages as well.
- Since it’s owned by Google, you can integrate it with many other tools of Google, like Google Analytics.
- You can monetize it and even apply for Google AdSense, which means you can run ads.
- It provides more storage than most of the other free blogging platforms.
- You don’t need the minimum of technical knowledge to run it. Everything is looked after by Google. But if you want you can edit the HTML and CSS code.
I started my first blog on this platform and although it didn’t serve my purpose, objectively speaking, it is a great platform if you are looking something for free and yet earn money.
So, these are the best free blogging platforms of 2018. I hope I have been able to explain the features of these best free blogging platforms of 2018. Of course, there are many other platforms that have come up in the past few years and they provide great features. But considering the bigger picture, all pros and cons, I feel these five have the most to offer. Of course, it also depends a lot on what you are looking for.
Anyway, feel free to ask your queries about the best free blogging platforms of 2018 in the comment section below. I will get back to you as soon as I can.