The Myth of the “Best” Blogging Platform

I’m currently writing a series on blogging platforms, on my Business and Blogging site, which no doubt contributed to my taking particular notice today of an item on Blog Business Summit, linking to a very neat and helpful post My Top 5 Blogging Tools by Todd Ziegler, which includes the following hearty endorsement of WordPress :

WordPress is the best blogging platform for my money because it is easy to use, full featured and completely open source (free!).

This statement seems to sum up all the arguments I’ve heard for WordPress over the past few years. 

The challenge I have with that sort of endorsement is that I believe the “best blogging platform” does not exist, any more than the “best car” or “best plane” exists. That’s not a criticism of Todd – he does say “for my money”, which I read to mean, for his purposes. My challenge is when other people extrapolate from their personal preference to make a global claim – and believe me I’ve been in enough “discussions” on forums to know that some people will simply not hear anything that suggests that WordPress might not be the ideal solution for everyone in every situation.

I looked at some of the issues in this post on User Types. Different blogging users have different levels of expertise, different needs, different attitudes to how much they want to do themselves and how much they want to leave to others. And there are considerable differences that come into play when you compare a solo blogger’s needs with a multi-user requirement in a large corporation.

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About Des Walsh

I show business owners and other professionals how to navigate the social media maze and use LinkedIn effectively. I'm an author, speaker, business coach, social media strategist and LinkedIn specialist. Connect with me on LinkedIn, Google Plus and Twitter. And to stay in the loop, get my weekly Social Business Bites.

Comments

  1. I posted something very similar t this recently on my blog. Each person must decide what is best for them and although I like “free”, I now recommend “paid” website hosting, no matter what platform you choose:) Just look at several different platforms, what they have to offer and see what works best for you. I too use wordpress. It works pretty well, although, I think there are some things that can be difficult for new users.

    Brenda Bunneys last blog post..Internet Marketing Tools | Does One Size Fit All?

  2. I actually like NucleusCMS myself. It’s a much smaller project than WordPress, but it has its advantages.

  3. Internet Marketing Services says:

    I’ve spent some time doing the research and it looks to me like WordPress wins hands down. I’m about to install it on a domain for a client and I always research before I do anything, thanks to everyone who posted there own opinions and experiences.

  4. Marketing Articles says:

    I agree to you Shawn not to mention Blogger.:-)

    -Jan

  5. Shawn "University Blogger" Thomas says:

    I think wordpress is the best blogging platform. However the others are equally as good as blogs.

  6. Great post, and wordpress blogs always seems to bring mixed feelings.

    I personally use wordpress, and have never had a problem with it. I agree with your honest statement of “there is no such thing as the best of anything – any more”. However, every internet marketing professional is now fully understanding the power of blogs, and most as using wordpress.

    I would agree that you should not use a blog as your main website, especially a free version hosted by wordpress, without a paid domain name. But as a way of driving traffic, wordpress blogs are worth their weight in gold.

    The search engines love them, and you have to agree with that? You are not punished for low keyword density, and you are not judged as harsh as a “proper website”. Indexing is proven to be faster than a website, and lets be honest here, useing a wordpress blog has to be one of the simpliest tools on the internet to use.

    They are easy to learn, non time consuming, good to look at, with more free tools and widgets than you can shake a stick at!

    I often recommend to people who want to be online without the hassle of learning website design, SEO etc that blogs are the way to go, and that has to be true, would you agree?

    I would not swap my website for a wordpress blog, not for anything in the world, but as a marketing tool and traffic driver, they can be amazing. And let us remember; The so called experts told us blogs have had there day. How wrong they were. After all, the so called experts are now using multiple wordpress blogs to promote their main websites!

    Thanks for writing a good post. I’ll be sticking close to see what others have to say. Keep up the good work.
    Sincerely,
    John Adams
    http://www.honest-homebusiness.com

  7. great post.thanx for sharing.yes you are right wordp0ress is the best thats why i also switched to wordpress.It has a variety of benefits whihc the other don’t have.

  8. Patrick
    Thanks for sharing your extensive experience and considered opinions. I did try to install a blog on Drupal some time ago and eventually had to give up, although I do appreciate that it is a very good platform for those who know how to manage it.

  9. Greetings all, I find every platform has it’s good and bad points parts that are easy to use and parts that drive you mad.

    Recently while setting up some new domains I installed different platforms on each, i.e. Drupal, WordPress, movable type, B2Evolution, Joomla, and Mambo.

    I have been using wordpress for quite some time and have been in the habit of just installing that.
    I deleted B2, Joomla and Mambo –

    I haven’t played with Drupal for some years and was pleased with the distribution, in my opinion you have far more freedom with Drupal and with the abundance of plugins available (more useful ones than wordpress) I believe Drupal beats wordpress for scalability simplicity.

    Saying that it is complicated to use has limited WISIWIG editing (haven’t found an easy integration pack yet) and for the new user could be over whelming.

    Then Movable type has a kicking admin panel that is easily customized, has brilliant editing for the novice easy to understand interfaces and is like all mainly open source commons license.

    What I am saying is I believe Drupal, WordPress, & Movable Type are all great platforms they all are scalable with programing knowledge they all are reasonably user friendly, they all take advantage of the latest technologies.

    What you are happy to use is what is good, stick to the main platforms if you wish as they are all good.

    For real simple publishing it is hard to go past Squarespace.com that is a truly simple blogging platform that looks very professional, is SEO friendly and RSS organics better than all the other platforms out of the box.

    Downside? No commerce or server side scripting .

    Patrick – managedspaces & footprints communities.

    Have a B L O G G I N G good day

  10. Anonymous says:

    Of course you’re right in what you say, Dean. On the other hand, doing the series on Business and Blogging has made me aware of how complex and multi-faceted the issue of blogging platforms actually is in a business context, so when a site like Blog Business Summit which I regard as an authority site, passes on that assessment without qualification – not that they have any obligation to qualify the assessment – I feel a need to try in my own small way to expand the debate.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Point well taken, Teresa

    At the same time, experiences like mine a few days ago with a couple of WordPress blogs which would suddenly not let me type into the post composing/editing box leave me less than a true believer in WordPress. I went on a search of discussions about this and found others had experienced the same problem, and tried various suggested solutions without success. Amusingly, I solved it by doing a couple of things others had tried without success.

    For a non-technical person like me, it’s the uncertainty of knowing what to do and the “well, we are all volunteers so if you can’t handle it you shouldn’t be using free software” attitude I notice a lot on the forums that makes me hesitant to recommend WordPress for business users. If I knew of a truly service-focused third party provider for WordPress I would re-think that.

    Presumably WordPress MU has people who solve such problems rather than leaving it to the community. There are other solutions at the multi-user level and I look forward to the day when someone with practical field experience of such products does a serious comparison. In the meantime, as this is the Thinking Home Business blog, my focus here is not really on the multi-user environment.

  12. Anonymous says:

    “And there are considerable differences that come into play when you compare a solo blogger’s needs with a multi-user requirement in a large corporation.”
    That’s what WordPress Multi-User is for 😛
    Thanks for the inbound link!

  13. Anonymous says:

    when other people extrapolate from their personal preference to make a global claim

    I agree. But then again, people do that in every online forum on every topic anyway. I know you and I have talked about this as well and it’s just different strokes for different folks.

    Dean <-- WordPress fan 🙂

  14. The “best” anything is a complete myth. What each individual needs may not be always what the majority of individuals want. Blogging needs are as individual as the blogger. Even though I use WordPress and highly recommend it, it is not the only platform that I recommend to clients and colleagues. WordPress, Typepad, Blog Harbour and others all have their place.