How to Build Your Blog Following on Twitter the Right Way

Building a blog following on Twitter is a lot easier said than done, especially when you are new to the platform. Twitter, like every social media platform, has developed a user culture that makes it easy to build your blog following once you know the...

How to Get Started With Affiliate Marketing to Make Your First Dollar

It’s no secret that affiliate marketing is one of the first steps many bloggers take to making money, but not everyone sees success right away. I see so many bloggers get excited over .30 cents when I know that with the right strategies and content...

London’s Best Instagram and Photography Locations

London is one of the most iconic and most photographed cities in the world. Its sprawling nature means that hidden away among the winding streets are cozy cafes filled with flowers, charming baked goods, and dreamy facades - perfect for taking those viral...

Benefits Of Hosting & Contributing To Collaborative Blog Posts

Collab posts can be beneficial for both bloggers taking part and the bloggers hosting them. They are a great way to get content out there to a different audience as well as earn karma points for collaborating and networking! If you're unsure what the...

What Is Perlu Influencer Network and Why Travel Bloggers Should Be Using It

Female Travel Bloggers is thrilled to become the Travel Blogging advisor for Perlu - an influencer network. We've been poking around on the site for a few weeks and we are loving the experience so far. Perlu is an innovative professional network for...
    • About FTB

      Want to find out more about how FTB started and our mission to support, educate and connect Female Travel Bloggers? This is the place! 

    • Meet The Team

      Want to find out more about the ladies behind FTB? You're in luck, come and get to know us!

    • FTB Recommends

      Knowing which web hosting provider or social media tool to use can be daunting. And with so many courses out there to choose from, who knows where to start! We have put together a list of services, tools, and courses that we think are the best of the best to help you get started. 

    • SEO

      SEO is the Holy Grail for many bloggers and business owners alike. Our resources will not only help you get started with the basics but also to consistently increase your traffic.

    • Basic Keyword Research and Ranking Strategies

      Basic Keyword Research and Ranking Strategies

      Keyword research is time-consuming. Implementing a strong keyword strategy from start to finish in order to rank competitively can take hours and involves a combination of independent research and utilizing a keyword research tool. Having a solid basic understanding...

      15 Common SEO Mistakes and How To Avoid or Fix Them

      15 Common SEO Mistakes and How To Avoid or Fix Them

      SEO is probably one of the most mysterious aspects of travel blogging. A lot of guides out there focus on what you can do to improve your SEO game, but they often don’t highlight what you are doing wrong making it hard to target problem areas to fix them....

    • Social Media

      With ever-changing algorithms, social media can be a never-ending mystery. Our resources are aimed at using the powers of being social without wanting to tear your hair out!

    • Are Followers Important on Pinterest?

      Are Followers Important on Pinterest?

      Followers on Pinterest! What everyone wants, but everyone struggles to gain. Followers used to be very important on Pinterest when they prioritized pins from people you follow in your feed. Pinterest has been putting the emphasis on ALL pins across...

      How to Use Tailwind Tribes For Your Travel Blog

      How to Use Tailwind Tribes For Your Travel Blog

      If you’re reading this post, you probably already have some idea of what Tailwind tribes are, but if you don’t, we will catch you up to speed. Tailwind tribes are a great feature that work similarly to group boards on Pinterest, except they encourage...

      How to Set Up Your Tailwind Account

      How to Set Up Your Tailwind Account

      So you decided to try out Tailwind to help increase traffic to your blog from Pinterest? Congrats! We adore Tailwind and the way it allows you to streamline your Pinterest strategy. If you know me, you know how much I love efficient processes and data, and...

    • Website Development

      Website Development is one of those Marmite aspects of blogging; you either love it or hate it. No matter what you're feelings are, there's no doubt that a great looking and high functioning website increases traffic and all the analytics you need to worry about!

    • What Is A WordPress Child Theme & Do I Need One?

      What Is A WordPress Child Theme & Do I Need One?

      Parent themes. Child themes. Premium themes. If you’ve looked into upgrading to a premium Wordpress theme, chances are you have come across the term child theme. However, when there’s so much to know and learn, it's not surprising it can all be confusing....

      The Best WordPress Plugins For Blogs

      The Best WordPress Plugins For Blogs

      The world of plugins can be a confusing one - there’s so much advice about which ones to use, how many to use and how they impact your site. So, right off the bat let’s set the record straight: as with many things, it’s about quality, not quantity. It's no...

      11 Things To Love About The Divi WordPress Theme

      11 Things To Love About The Divi WordPress Theme

      When it comes to Wordpress themes, there are plenty of options to choose from and it can be daunting. In terms of paid themes, there are a few big players: Divi by Elegant Themes, Genesis Framework by StudioPress and Avada by ThemeFusion. We see a ton of posts in the...

    • Travel

      Our travel resources have been compiled by expert travel bloggers from around the world! 

    • London’s Best Instagram and Photography Locations

      London’s Best Instagram and Photography Locations

      London is one of the most iconic and most photographed cities in the world. Its sprawling nature means that hidden away among the winding streets are cozy cafes filled with flowers, charming baked goods, and dreamy facades - perfect for taking those viral...

      Best National Parks in the United States

      Best National Parks in the United States

      National Parks have a long history in the United States and special meaning to many Americans. Before air travel was overwhelmingly popular people in the U.S. would load their families up and go on a road trip to see the natural beauty close to home. The...

      Discover The Best National Parks in The World

      Discover The Best National Parks in The World

      National Parks may have originated in the United States, but the concept quickly caught on as countries around the world rushed to preserve the natural beauty for generations to come. The world is full of amazing and beautiful national parks, each one...

  • Blogging FAQs

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post, at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, FTB earns from qualifying purchases.

Sharing is caring!

There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to choosing a website building platform: Wix, Sitebuilder, Weebly, Squarespace, WordPress.com and WordPress.org to name just the big players. With so many options, it can be overwhelming to know which one you ‘should ‘use. This overwhelm often leads to choosing based on price or on what your friends are using and neither of those means you’ll be making the best decision for your blog.

I make no bones about the fact I love WordPress.org and think everyone could be using it, no matter where they are on their blogging journey!

However, before I sing WordPress.org’s praises, let’s talk about the difference between the platforms. Many website building platforms are free and therefore the temptation to use them is massive. Platforms like WordPress.com Wix, Weebly and Squarespace are ‘all in one platform’ and most have both free and paid versions. Paid or free, these platforms do allow you to add pages and posts, use themes and, to some extent, customize your site with your branding. The paid versions usually enable you to remove their branding too and offer more advanced options. 

Many people choose to use one of these website building platforms to build their site because right off the bat they seem easier than WordPress.org. There are fewer moving parts to pull together and, because of the limited functionality, the learning curve isn’t as intense. If you’re determined not to embark on learning WordPress.org, then, of course, one of these platforms could work for you. If you don’t plan to develop your website beyond a portfolio/online resume and if you can say for sure you won’t want (or need) to add advanced functionality (eCommerce/SEO/membership areas etc) then don’t let me sway you out of your decision. This is a great overview of which platforms work well.

On a side note, don’t be fooled into thinking that making a move from free WordPress.com to business WordPress.com is the same as moving to WordPress.org – it doesn’t give you much more functionality and quite frankly I don’t really see the point in the business plan!

As I mentioned, there are various parts that need to come together for a self-hosted WordPress.org website. Namely website hosting, the domain, themes, plugins and Wordpres.org itself. I will talk about everything you need to know to get started with WordPress.org in a separate post. For now, let’s focus on why WordPress.org is the best website building platform whatever your blog structure and goals. 

However, if you’re on the fence and are willing to not give in to the temptation of a free website builder, let’s dive into why I think WordPress.org is the bomb!

Optimisation

Unless you have had your head in the sand for the last however many years, you are probably fully aware that the Google Gods need to ‘like’ your website for you to appear when someone searches relevant keywords. One of WordPress.org’s most important strengths is the fact that your website can be fully optimized to help with SEO rankings, user experience and all the other technical things that Google looks for. For example, you can optimise your images so they are losslessly compressed ensuring they load faster. You can cache your website’s data ensuring that your site is as light as possible. You can create a website that’s intuitive and fun for users to experience no matter what device they are viewing it from. 

This optimisation can seem daunting and it’s something that puts many people off getting started with WordPress.org. However, it’s important to think that if you’re going to all the effort of building a website for your blog, you need people to find it and to enjoy their time on the website once they are there. You only have a few seconds to capture users attention and turn them into fans and customers – slow, ugly, non-user-friendly websites don’t do this.

Functionality

WordPress.org provides unlimited options for functionality. Whether you want to create a membership system, an online store, an online course, a booking platform, an affiliate program, with over 54,000 plugins in its repository, it’s safe to say that whatever you’re going to want to do, there’s a plugin for it. And that figure doesn’t include many of the premium plugins that need to be downloaded from the developer directly. 

Wordpress has almost unlimited functionality with so many great plugins!

WordPress has almost unlimited functionality with so many great plugins!

This not only means you can grow and develop your website as you and your blog evolve but it also means you only need to set up and configure what you need, when you need it. That makes the learning curve easier to handle – getting to grips with the basic functionality of WordPress.org can take a while but knowing you don’t need to dive right in with everything at once makes that a little less intense! It also means you don’t have an excuse not to get started – no more “when I know how to create a membership site I will launch my website” Just create what you need, as you need it.

Help & Support For Using The Website Building Platform

In addition to the fact that you can use WordPress themes and plugins to build whatever your heart (or blog) desires, the fact that they are all built on the WordPress framework means there’s a similarity across the board. WordPress.org hosts around 37 million websites – if all those people are putting it to effective use, WordPress.org has to be offering something right!

With so many websites being built on this website building platform, you’re always going to find help and support if you do come stuck. There are endless conversations about WordPress.org in Facebook groups, forums, and online chat rooms. You’ll likely come to realize that generally speaking the WordPress community is filled with friendly geeks who like to try and solve problems for other people. And if all that doesn’t solve your problems, there are plenty of WordPress specialists who can be hired with any budget.

Wordpress support groups on Facebook

There are tons of WordPress support groups on Facebook!

Your Own Content

This is a huge advantage of WordPress.org. Everything you create on your site is your own, even if it’s built with 3rd party plugins. This is especially convenient for membership sites and online courses where 3rd party platforms such as Teachable and Thinkific seem easy to use but don’t allow for full customization and take a % of your profits. By developing your content on your own website, there’s no need for you to pay a percentage of your hard earned cash to anyone else ☺

Customisability

The extent of how far you can go with customising your site can vary from theme to theme. However, on the whole, building a website on WordPress.org means every aspect of your site can be customised with your branding and style. Premium themes offer the most options but there are plenty of decent free ones that give enough options to get you started.

Once you’ve decided to go with WordPress as your website building platform, you’ll need a theme.

Have a read of what I think you should look for in a WordPress theme to get started. 

Legal Compliance

In May 2018, the EU bought out new rules focusing on data protection for users. Any site that can be visited by an EU citizen is now required to be GDPR compliant and there are various aspects involved in becoming compliant.

Unlike other website platforms who put very basic functionality in place so users could in some way be compliant, WordPress.org ensured that users have the tools they need to be fully compliant. Most 3rd parties who create plugins and themes also put things in place to ensure compliance.

Not sure if your blog meets GDPR compliance? Check out this post on what you need to do!

Your Readers User Experience

The fact that you can start with a blank canvas means that there really is nothing stopping you from creating the website that your users need while representing your personal brand. Of course, the more complex the journey you want to take users on, the more complex the creation will be, but you really are only restricted by either your imagination or your capability. Luckily, there are plenty of WordPress experts (ahem…) out there who can overcome your lack of technical skills and bring your vision to life with WordPress.org.

Yes, there is a steep learning curve to WordPress and, especially if you’re moving there from a different website building platform, it might seem intense. However, chances are in the long run you’re going to end up with your site on WordPress.org so instead of learning something else first then migrating and needing to learn a new platform, it makes sense to start with WordPress.org from the get-go.

I would love to hear about your experiences with different website building platforms. Are you a WordPress.org fan or do you use something else? What do you love or hate about your current platform?

Lottie Reeves

Lottie Reeves

Admin & Facebook Manager

Originally from the UK, Lottie has traveled extensively across 6 continents & lived in Australia, Canada & South Africa.

She ditched the bright lights of primary classrooms to embark on an adventure exploring South Africa in a caravan as a location independent freelancer. Her next adventure is taking her, temporarily, back to the UK where she will be living in a narrowboat and bobbing around on the waterways.

A self-proclaimed princess who loves all things pink and sparkly; connect with Lottie at her site Princess In A Caravan.

shares