8 WordPress Alternatives for Small Business Bloggers of All Skill Levels

April 3, 2018 Cathy Reisenwitz

Update 4/3/2018: This post has been updated to remove Ghost, Joomla, Drupal, Textpattern, Postach.io, Hubspot, and Tumblr, as well as add Squarespace, Wix, Weebly, and TypePad.

WordPress seems to be everywhere you look when you’re blogging.

It’s like the Google of blogging platforms and content management systems. Somewhere in your overworked brain, you remember that there are alternatives out there, but you’re too busy to learn what they are, let alone figure out whether they’re worth your time.

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I’m here to help. There are some great WordPress alternatives for bloggers out there, and you should definitely know what they are. WordPress is great, but it’s not for everyone.

With WordPress.org, you have to find and manage your own hosting and updates (including for all plugins) to ensure nothing deprecates and opens the door to data breaches. WordPress.com offers less flexibility, customization options, and extensibility than some other blogging options.

I’ve rounded up eight WordPress alternatives for small business bloggers.

While WordPress also offers content management functionality (meaning you can set up a whole website or eCommerce business using the platform), I focused this list on blogging alternatives. If you’re looking for a service that:

  • Will host your blog
  • Lets you start writing and publishing withzero coding or design knowledge
  • Costs less than $100/month for the business plan
  • Can be used with Google Analytics
  • Allows unlimited authors/contributors (unless noted)

This is the list for you.

Eight WordPress alternatives for your small business’ blog

I compared eight platforms, focusing on the features available for each platform’s most affordable plan that still offers multiple users. For each platform, we’ll look at the available templates and integrations, allotted storage, and reasons to consider using it.

Platforms are listed alphabetically.

1. Blogger

An image showing a basic overview of Blogger
Blogger screenshot (via Source)

Blogger is a totally free blogging platform that supports up to 100 contributors.

Storage space: 1GB

Templates: 1,000+

Integrations: Google AdSense

Reasons to be excited:

  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • Can upgrade to eCommerce via a third-party add-on
  • Comment moderation
  • Threaded comments

Things to keep in mind:

  • Podcasting with Blogger requires more steps than other options on this list
  • Can upload files for download, but readers can’t upload files
  • No support outside of the forum

2. Medium

Medium vs WordPress video

If it’s good enough for Gregory Ciotti (marketing at HelpScout), Dhariana Lozano (co-founder of SupremacyMKTG), and Jay Baer (founder of Convince & Convert), Medium may very well be good enough for you. The platform is free to use, and its biggest value-add is its inherent social functionality. Medium makes it easy for readers to find your posts through tagging and hand-curated email newsletters, and lets readers quickly subscribe to your posts with the click of a button.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: One

Integrations: WordPress, IFTTT

Reasons to be excited:

  • Inline commenting
  • Comment moderation
  • Threaded comments

Things to keep in mind:

  • Can’t upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • Can’t customize the blog design
  • Can’t schedule posts
  • Can’t upgrade to eCommerce
  • Can’t create or manage podcasts
  • No file uploading

3. Silvrback

A screenshot of Silvrback
Silvrback screenshot (via Source)

“If you are a bit on the fringe, don’t quite fit in, perhaps a bit non-conformist, then you should feel right at home with us,” Silvrback Founder Kermit writes of his creation. The blog’s author bio section has room not just for a headshot and bio, but also space to list projects you’re working on. At $3.99 per month for unlimited users, it’s the cheapest paid option on this list.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: Two, with a third on the way

Integrations: Disqus comments

Reasons to be excited:

  • Syntax highlighting for developers
  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs (with annual subscription)
  • Can host and embed podcasts
  • Email support

Things to keep in mind:

  • Only two design templates
  • No eCommerce capability
  • No file uploading

4. Squarespace

Squarespace is included in our top free website builders piece and ranks second on Capterra’s “Top 20 Most Popular Content Management Software” infographic. The company lets small business owners create an online presence without having to pay a developer or learn to code. The business edition is $18/per month.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: 500+

Integrations: 75+ integrations in areas including commerce, social, and design

Reasons to be excited:

  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • eCommerce functionality included
  • Can create and manage podcast syndication to Apple Podcasts
  • Comment moderation
  • Threaded comments
  • File uploading
  • Support available via email and live chat

Things to keep in mind:

5. Svbtle

A screenshot of Svbtle
Svbtle screenshot (via Source)

Svbtle offers an unobtrusive design that mimics the way writers ideate naturally. The platform’s website says that it “is designed to work the same way your brain works. It encourages you to dump ideas, links, and thoughts into a flow of draft posts, and then makes it easy to slowly sculpt those ideas into publishable articles.” It costs $6 per month, and comes with a promise that your content will stay online forever.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: One

Integrations: None

Reasons to be excited:

  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs

Things to keep in mind:

  • Cannot customize the blog design
  • Can’t schedule posts
  • Can’t upgrade to eCommerce
  • Can’t create or manage podcasts
  • No comment moderation
  • No threaded comments
  • No file uploading
  • No archive, tags/categories, or search

6. TypePad

A screenshot of TypePad
TypePad screenshot (via Source)

TypePad offers user support and a vast knowledge base created and maintained by the company. The business edition is only $14.95 per month for unlimited contributors.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: 100+

Integrations: Formstack, Wufoo

Reasons to be excited:

  • Readers and authors can upload files
  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • Can upgrade to eCommerce via a third-party add-on
  • Can host or embed podcast episodes
  • Comment moderation
  • Threaded comments
  • Support via email

Things to keep in mind:

  • Limited plugins, apps, and features
  • Only about a dozen of the available themes are responsive

7. Weebly

A screenshot of Weebly
Weebly screenshot (via Source)

Weebly ranks fifth on Capterra’s content management software infographic, and is the highest-rated website building mobile app in Apple’s app store and the Google Play store. The business edition costs $12 per month for unlimited contributors.

Storage space: Unlimited

Templates: ~100

Integrations: App center

Reasons to be excited:

  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • Can upgrade to eCommerce
  • Can host or embed podcast episodes
  • Comment moderation
  • Threaded comments
  • Site visitors can upload files
  • Phone, live chat, and email support

Things to keep in mind:

  • Very few integrations with third party platforms, limited app store

8. Wix

Wix is also included in the abovementioned top free website builders piece and ranks third on Capterra’s top 20 most popular content management software infographic. It offers an ad-supported free version that is fairly robust. You’ll need the business edition to get a custom domain, which costs $14/per month.

Storage space: 10GB

Templates: 500+

Integrations: Blogger, moderation and threading through Facebook comments, Disqus comments, and Comments App (part of the platform’s large app market)

Reasons to be excited:

  • Can upgrade to eCommerce
  • Site visitors can upload files
  • Every template is mobile responsive and SEO-optimized
  • Can upgrade to custom domain name with SSL/HTTPs
  • Artificial design intelligence (ADI) learns your design preferences to suggest styles that match them

Things to keep in mind:

  • There’s no training or support available outside of the platform’s user forum

Bottom line: Which WordPress alternative is right for you?

Now that we broke all eight of these options down, here’s a summary of what we covered to help you decide which WordPress alternative might be right for you:

  • If you’re creating an entire website, want the option for eCommerce later, and are willing to pay a little more, Squarespace is your best option.
  • If you need all that but are fine without support and want to save a little money, Wix is a great choice.
  • If you’re willing to give up some templates and integrations for awesome support, all while paying even less, Weebly should be your top pick.
  • Blogger is totally free and still has tons of templates and other features.
  • For SMBs who write about STEM and want their blog to also help with personal branding, Silvrback is a great, inexpensive choice.
  • If an unobtrusive, writing-focused user interface is a priority for you, take a close look at Svbtle.
  • If finding new readers and making writing a social endeavor is your top priority—and you can do without a custom domain—Medium is a great choice.

Which WordPress alternatives do you like for blogging? Why? Have you used any on this list? What was your experience? Let me know in the comments!

Before you go, check out these other blog posts:

The post 8 WordPress Alternatives for Small Business Bloggers of All Skill Levels appeared first on Capterra Blog.

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