Congratulations! You have started your own small business and have begun the process of putting your marketing plan together. Being the savvy entrepreneur you are, you know that having a blog is an excellent way to reach out to your constituents. From improving SEO, to positioning yourself as a thought leader, blogs can do wonders for your new business. At this point, you are ready to find a business blogging platform that allows you to promote your business and ensure an excellent experience for your potential clients. Here are our picks for the best blogging platforms for small business owners.
WordPress.org is the largest content management system in the world. With this platform, you not only have the choice to host a blog, but you can also create an entire website using WordPress. What makes WordPress.org stand out is the amount of flexibility and customization you can use for your business. Many of WordPress’ templates are created with SEO in mind, so you don’t have to worry about Google not indexing your site.
Also, the many plugins at your disposal that allow you to optimize your site make adding contact forms, social media integrations, and e-commerce shops a breeze. WordPress.org also integrates with popular tools like Shopify, MailChimp, and Google Analytics (through plugins) so getting more subscribers for your email list or monitoring interactions with your site is easy.
Now, if you already have a website and do not have the time (or capability) to add a blog, Medium is a great place to host your content. It is easy for users to navigate the site, the visual aesthetics are clean, and it is easy for users to follow your blog content.
While you are starting from the scratch (as far as visibility is concerned) with your own website, Medium can bring the traffic to you as the site has an active audience of over 60 million readers every month. The site also allows you to attach up to five tags to your blog so people can much more easily find your content. Using Medium is a great way not only to host a blog but to also drive traffic back to your business (while hopefully increasing conversions).
This may not seem like an obvious choice from the outset, but LinkedIn can do wonders for your small business’ blog. LinkedIn allows you to connect your professional profile to your company, which can, in turn, connect to your blog. Many use LinkedIn to position themselves as thought leaders in their respective industries, so you can show your potential customers you are providing information beyond pushing a sale.
Another great feature of LinkedIn is that it is easy to reblog and share material without having to go through the trouble of setting up a new post (unlike WordPress.org or other content management sites). You can connect your blog to your business page which can attract leads that could potentially follow you to hear more about your postings. The blog and business page connection also allows them to navigate your official website. LinkedIn is an excellent option for small business owners who want to position themselves as an authority in their industry. It is even better for small businesses who have a B2B slant.
Much like Reddit, Quora has risen to become a premier platform for individuals to seek direct answers to questions. This alone makes Quora a great choice for small businesses. It blends the ease of Medium with the thought leadership slant of LinkedIn. If you are a small business owner, people want to know how you did it, how you are staying successful, and the hiccups you experienced along the way. Quora allows you to position yourself as an expert.
As your professional brand becomes associated with being an authority in your industry, the greater visibility your business can start to receive. You can pay to promote your blog, and even add contributors to produce content for it. Also, if you do not want to host a blog on Quora, you can also use the site to drive people back to another blog or website.
This one is pretty similar to WordPress.org as this is not only a blog site, but it is also a content management system. You can host a Wix website using their hosting options and can design your blog (or entire website) to look exactly the way you want. Unlike WordPress.org, Wix is a little easier to get started with. You can build your site using their drag and drop feature, add an e-commerce store, install forms that allow clients to book meeting times, and even invoice and get paid by clients. While many of these features can be accomplished with a WordPress.org plugin, most of these are services that are offered directly b Wix. If you want a professional looking website or blog with some customization options and are not incredibly tech savvy, Wix is likely the best way to go.
When you are selecting a blog platform for your small business, you need to take two things into account: cost and the amount of time it takes to set it up or post on it. Time and money are precious, and all the options above (except for WordPress.org) are pretty quick to set up and are free to set up.
However, if you are looking for customization and want to control your own design aesthetic, then an option like WordPress.org or even Wix may be a better option. Either way, these options can ensure your blog becomes that centerpiece of your marketing strategy. It can pay dividends when it comes to attracting new leads or encouraging conversions.
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