When starting a blog, choosing the right blogging platform for a blogger or content creator is crucial.
With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to find the perfect fit. In today’s article, we will compare ten of the most popular best CMS platforms for blogging.
By examining their features, pros, and cons, you can make an informed decision that suits your content and blog management needs.
But first, let’s answer the question most beginners might want to know.
What is a CMS?
A Content Management System (CMS) is a software application that allows individuals or organizations to create, manage, and publish digital content without requiring advanced technical knowledge or understanding of programming language.
It provides a user-friendly interface and tools for content creation, editing, management, and publishing.
With a content management system, bloggers can focus on creating engaging content rather than dealing with the technical aspects of website management.
Without a CMS, you will have to build web pages by writing its codes like HTML, CSS, JavasScript, and the like yourself. This will be an uphill task for many people who don’t know how to write code but want to start a blog.
The other option will be to pay developers to write the codes, build the website, and handle it. This project might cost a few thousand dollars depending on the feature and blog requirements.
CMS removes these limitations to create a blog and makes it possible for anyone, regardless of technical knowledge, to start a blog effortlessly.
How to Choose the Best CMS for Blogging
Several content management systems exist today, so choosing the best CMS platforms for beginners is critical.
How do you know which platform is best for you?
Here are some features or things to look for if you want to pick the ideal blog software for your project.
- Ease of Use – Look for a CMS with a user-friendly interface and intuitive content editing tools. Beginners should be able to navigate and manage their websites easily without requiring extensive technical knowledge.
- Customization Options – Consider the level of customization you desire for your blog. Look for a CMS that offers a wide range of themes, templates, and plugins to customize the design and functionality of your website according to your preferences.
- Support and Documentation – Check if the CMS provides good support options like community forums, documentation, tutorials, or customer support. Having access to resources and assistance can be invaluable, especially for beginners.
- Scalability – Consider your future growth plans. Choose a CMS that can scale with your blog’s needs, accommodating increased traffic, content volume, and additional features as your blog expands.
- Security – Ensure the CMS prioritizes security measures to protect your blog from vulnerabilities, Malware, DDoS attacks, or cyber threats. Look for features like regular updates, strong user authentication, and plugins/extensions vetted for security.
- SEO Capabilities – Opt for a CMS that offers built-in SEO features or supports SEO plugins. This will help optimize your blog’s visibility in search engine rankings and attract organic traffic.
- Budget – Evaluate the cost associated with the CMS. Some CMS platforms are free and open-source, while others offer free and premium plans. Consider your budget and the value you expect from the CMS features.
- User Reviews and Reputation – Research user reviews, ratings, and feedback on the CMS platform you are considering. This information can provide insights into the user experience and the reliability of the CMS.
- Integration with Third-Party Tools – Determine if the CMS easily integrates with third-party tools or services you may require for your blog, such as email marketing software, analytics tools, SEO tools, or social media platforms.
- Future Flexibility – Assess the flexibility of the CMS. Ensure that it allows you to migrate or switch to a different platform if your needs change in the future without significant data loss or disruption.
These factors and more are what you should consider before going for that CMS blogging platform.
Also, remember that even if the CMS platform is free, you still need to pay for hosting, third-party services, and possible premium themes and plugins.
Now that you know how to choose the best blogging platforms suitable for your project, let’s look at the 9 best CMS platforms.
Best Content Management System for Blogging
If you’re starting a blog today, you will probably pick from one of these blogging software. Let’s list the 9 best website platforms to start a blog today.
WordPress is the undisputed leader in the CMS industry, powering over 43% of all websites on the internet.
It offers a user-friendly interface, a vast selection of themes and plugins, and a supportive community.
WordPress.org is the platform in the discussion here, designed initially as a blogging platform but has evolved into a complete-fledged platform for all online presence.
For example, you can use WordPress as an e-commerce store, business website, government, academic, eLearning, portfolio, tech, etc. Whatever your website project, you can build it with WordPress.
Being a self-hosted platform, you must host your site with a web host, so you’re responsible for hosting costs and any additional premium features required.
WordPress.org has over 60,000 free plugins and over 5,000 free WordPress themes, making it the largest open-source blogging platform worldwide.
WordPress is highly customizable and suitable for bloggers of all levels. However, it can be resource-intensive and require additional security measures and plugins to expand its features.
WordPress Top Features
- Vast selection of themes and plugins for customization
- User-friendly interface and intuitive content editor
- Powerful SEO capabilities
- Active community support and extensive documentation
- Built-in traffic and content performance analytics features.
- Automatically shares published content to connected social media platforms
- Built-in XML sitemap generator and submission tools.
- Image lazy load feature.
- Highly customizable and scalable
- Extensive user and developer community
- Free and open-source
- Suitable for bloggers of all levels
- Regular updates
- WordPress offer complete control and freedom over blog management.
- Build any kind of website with WordPress – e-commerce, blog, portfolio, membership sites, forum, social media, etc.
- It doesn’t require coding or any technical knowledge.
- It can be resource-intensive, especially with complex themes and plugins
- Requires additional security measures
- Requires a steeper learning curve for advanced features
WordPress.org is a free self-hosted platform, but you need web hosting and a domain name to make your blog visible online.
We have free Cloudways hosting three days trial offer you can take to test your blog on WordPress.
And if that’s enough, here is a 7-day of Nexcess WordPress hosting free trial offer to get you started with WordPress in minutes at no cost.
Joomla is a powerful CMS that balances user-friendliness and advanced functionality.
It offers robust content management features, multilingual support, and an active community. Powering up to 2.5% of the internet, Joomla is an excellent choice if you want to test other CMS besides WordPress.
It is suitable for medium to large-sized blogs and websites. Due to its learning curve, Joomla is ideal for advanced developers and website owners.
Like WordPress, Joomla has been around for a long time, since 2005.
Joomla Tops Features
- Robust content management capabilities
- Multilingual support and strong community extensions
- Advanced user management options
- Flexible template system
- Available in different languages.
- SEO optimized
- One-click installation.
- Balances user-friendliness and advanced functionality
- Suitable for medium to large-sized blogs
- Active community support
- Scalable and customizable
- Joomla is open source.
- Steeper learning curve compared to other CMS platforms
- Limited theme and plugin options compared to WordPress.
- Requires regular updates for security
Joomla is free and open-source, but you must buy hosting and a domain name to build your blog, just like WordPress. It is a self-hosted platform that only provides the blogging software needed to build your blog.
Additionally, you may need to purchase extensions to customize your blog further and add more features.
Drupal is known for its scalability and security, making it a popular choice for complex and high-traffic websites.
It offers advanced content management capabilities and extensive customization options. It’s an ideal blogging software for those who need to build a highly customized website with a massive handline of user data.
Drupal is mainly used by many high-traffic sites, especially sites in the top 1 million most visited websites, making it an ideal option for mission-critical websites.
However, Drupal’s learning curve is steep and may require technical expertise to make the most of its features.
Drupal Top Features
- Scalable and highly customizable
- Advanced content management capabilities
- Robust security features
- Flexible taxonomy system
- Available in many languages.
- Advanced audience targeting capabilities and features.
- Powerful and suitable for complex and high-traffic websites
- Extensive customization options
- Strong focus on security
- Active developer community
- The steep learning curve for beginners
- Requires technical expertise for optimal usage
- More complex setup and configuration
Drupal is an open-source platform; it’s free to use as your blogging software.
However, you need a web host like Cloudways to handle all the heavy lifting and provide fast, blazing hosting technology suitable for sites created with Drupal.
For domain names, Namecheap is the ideal registrar. You can register a domain name for as low as $8 with Namecheap.
Ghost is a CMS specifically designed for bloggers, focusing on simplicity and a distraction-free writing experience.
It offers an intuitive editor, built-in SEO tools, and a minimalistic approach. And often described as a “headless CMS.”
This is because Ghost doesn’t force content to be delivered in a certain way; the content created in Ghost can be published directly to an app, website, or other publishing platforms.
Ghost is lightweight and optimized for speed, making it an excellent choice for bloggers and developers prioritizing performance over simplicity.
However, its plugin and theme options are more limited than other CMS platforms. Ghost does not have community support compared to WordPress.
Ghost Top Features
- Minimalistic and distraction-free writing environment
- Built-in SEO tools and responsive design
- Markdown-based editor
- Focus on speed and performance.
- Lightweight and optimized for speed
- Ideal for bloggers who prioritize writing experience
- Elegant and intuitive interface
- Offers a built-in membership and subscription model
- Limited plugin and theme options compared to other CMS platforms
- Less suitable for complex websites with diverse content types
- Smaller community compared to larger CMS platforms.
Ghost is an open-source platform like many of the listed CMS, but it is not fully supported by most web hosts today.
You can host a Ghost blog with Ghost(Pro) hosting and DigitalOcean or Linode, both cloud-hosting. And it required an Ubuntu server.
Wix is a user-friendly website builder offering a blogging platform.
It provides a drag-and-drop interface, a wide range of templates, and easy-to-use customization options. Wix is suitable for beginners or bloggers who prefer a visual approach.
However, it has limited scalability and may offer a different level of control than other CMS platforms.
Wix Top Features
- Drag-and-drop website builder with a WYSIWYG editor
- Wide range of templates and design options
- Easy-to-use customization tools
- Built-in e-commerce capabilities
- Mobile responsive prebuilt templates design.
- User-friendly and visually-oriented interface
- Quick and easy setup
- Suitable for beginners and small-scale bloggers
- Provides hosting and domain registration
- Limited scalability compared to other CMS platforms
- Less control and flexibility over advanced customization
- Not as SEO-friendly as some other CMS options
Wix offers a free and paid plan, depending on what you plan to do with your blog.
If you’re a hobby blogger, the free Wix plan is sufficient and good to go with. However, if you plan to build a business online, you need the paid option with monthly or annual billing.
The Combo plan starts at $8.50/m, removing the Wix branding and giving you more access to premium features.
If you want to use Wix to sell online and collect payments on your website, you must upgrade to the Business or eCommerce plan. The Business Basic plan costs $17/month, giving 20GB of storage space.
Squarespace is a popular CMS platform that emphasizes design and aesthetics.
It offers beautifully designed templates, responsive layouts, and built-in e-commerce capabilities.
Squarespace is ideal for bloggers who prioritize visual appeal and want a hassle-free setup.
However, it can be less flexible and provide fewer advanced features than other CMS platforms.
Squarespace Top Features
- Beautifully designed templates and responsive layouts
- Built-in e-commerce capabilities
- User-friendly interface and editor
- 24/7 customer support
- Emphasizes design and aesthetics
- Hassle-free setup and management
- Suitable for visually-focused bloggers
- Provides hosting and domain registration
- Limited flexibility and customization compared to other CMS platforms
- Less suitable for complex websites with specific functionality needs
- Higher pricing compared to some other CMS options
Offers monthly and annual subscription plans.
Blogger, owned by Google, is a straightforward and free blogging platform. It is easy to set up and use, making it suitable for beginners and casual bloggers.
Blogger integrates seamlessly with other Google products and offers basic customization options. Register your domain name and connect it to your hosting account if you want to start a professional blog on Blogger.
However, it needs more advanced features and customization possibilities compared to other CMS platforms like WordPress.
Blogger Top Features
- Straightforward interface
- Easy setup and management
- Integration with other Google products
- Basic customization options
- Free and easy to use
- Suitable for beginners and casual bloggers
- Suitable for personal and hobby blogs
- Reliable hosting by Google
- Limited advanced features compared to other CMS platforms
- Less control over design and functionality
- No official support system
Blogger is free to use; you can get a custom domain name to start a personal or professional blog using Blogger.
Medium is a popular platform for writers and bloggers who want to focus on content creation rather than technical aspects.
It offers a simple, clutter-free writing environment, built-in social networking features, and a built-in audience. Medium is undoubtedly the best website to start a free blog today.
It is a perfect blogging platform for individuals who wish to reach a wider audience without much marketing effort.
However, it has limited customization options and may not suit those who want complete control over their blog’s design and functionality.
Medium Top Features
- Minimalistic and distraction-free writing environment
- Built-in social networking features
- Easy publishing and sharing
- Access to a built-in audience
- Focuses on content creation rather than technical aspects
- Easy setup and usage
- Provides exposure to a broader audience
- Suitable for personal blogging and article sharing
- Limited customization options for design and functionality
- No control over monetization or advertising
- Relies on the Medium platform for hosting
Offers free and premium membership plans, but starting a blog on Medium is free. Anyone can publish to Medium directly or publish existing content they own.
While primarily an e-commerce platform, Shopify also provides robust blogging features. It offers a user-friendly interface, secure hosting, and built-in e-commerce capabilities.
Shopify is suitable for bloggers who want to sell products alongside their blogs. It is an all-in-one platform. You don’t need hosting, installing blogging software, or buying other things.
Your Shopify store or blog comes preinstalled with essential tools and hosting features required to start blogging in minutes.
According to a report on the Statista website, Shopify has a global eCommerce market share of around 10.3%.
However, Shopify is not an ideal blogging platform if you don’t want to open an e-commerce store alongside your blog.
Shopify Top Features
- User-friendly interface and store management
- Secure hosting and built-in e-commerce capabilities
- Wide range of customizable themes and templates
- Integration with various payment gateways
- Product management and inventory.
- Shopify POS for offline sales.
- Add staff and team members.
- Sell on a different platform by promoting your eCommerce products.
- Suitable for bloggers who want to sell products alongside their blog
- Easy setup and management of an online store
- Reliable customer support and community
- Scalable for growing businesses
- More focused on e-commerce functionality than blogging features
- Higher pricing compared to other CMS platforms.
- Limited customization options outside of the e-commerce realm
Shopify is a hosted platform; you must pay for the platform and other blogging and eCommerce features.
There are different pricing plans suitable for various business needs.
But you don’t have to jump on the paid plan if you don’t know how Shopify works or trying to figure out which plan fits your business requirements.
You should register for 3 months of the Shopify eCommerce plan, which costs $1/month. This will allow you to test the platform and features and determine the best option.
Here is the link to get $1/month for 3 months of Shopify.
Each CMS platform has its features, pros, and cons. Consider your blogging goals, technical proficiency, customization needs, and budget before deciding.
Whether you prioritize user-friendliness, customization options, or scalability, a CMS platform on this list can fulfill your requirements.
Choose wisely and start sharing your ideas with the world.