Medium is a global platform connecting writers, bloggers and readers through quality content including both informative articles and expressive opinions. Medium functions on the Content Management System (CMS) framework and aims at delivering a personalised reading experience to its readers. A CMS helps the user create, manage, and modify the contents of his/her website without the need for any HTML or CSS coding skills.
Any blog writing platform, including Medium, needs careful content strategising and implementation so that the CMS model delivers a perfect readership experience to the audience. Let’s track down a few other platforms other than Medium and discover the extensive features they have to offer.
It is one of the most suitable platforms to give space to your random thoughts and blogging ideas where one can write either for oneself or anonymously for a community. write.as particularly focuses on maintaining user’s privacy where users can either blog under their own identities or create anonymous ones.
It offers three plans - Core, Pro and Team - all ad-free blogs simply accessible to the reader through a link.
The Core provides basic features to users to write with minimalistic formatting and gain unlimited views by submitting blogs on Submit.As.
However, Submit.As is a high-end feature for Core members, Publishers and Institutions set at different rates accordingly.
Submitting and reviewing blogs on Write.As ain’t tedious at all and can be even done by the ones without an account on Write.As.
Along with themes, static pages and mail supports, Pro and Team plan feature the Read.Write.As without any additional charges where selective blogs can be made public for viewership to the Write.As community.
Another amazing feature increasing the popularity of Write.As is its Pro users can directly access their photo gallery, albums, and snippet stories built on Snap.As and include them into their blogs as well.
It is a bit unfair with the Team subscribers since they cannot link their blogs with Snap.As; Write.As promises this facility will soon be available for Team members as well.
Unfortunately, you have hit a dead-end if you are thinking of monetizing your blog through Write.As. It is not possible to cash in your Write.As blogs since it violates their basic principles of supporting an open authentic safe platform.
But Write.As has another blog-powerhouse in store known as WriteFreely, which support basic and minimum features for users to easily publish their blogs. WriteFreely works as a Fideverse instance. But what is a Fideverse instance? We will soon find it out!
One of the best alternatives of MEDIUM, Ghost in an open-source platform best for professionals interested in building their business model around publishing.
With a 14 days free trial, Ghost Pro is also divided into three parts - Basic, Standard, Business - varying mainly in terms of views per month, the number of staff enrolled to collectively edit the file and the maximum number of members who can view your blog.
Member of the Ghost Pro community have a complete control over their blog posts since Ghost is developer platform. Thus, it further ensures content-protection and enhanced SEO functionality.
No additional plugins are required for adding logos, creating navigation menus and injecting analytic codes.
There are several new features recently launched and one of them is Calendar Scheduling. It enables a blog to be uploaded as per the scheduled time mentioned and recorded beforehand. The new editor also provides a multilingual space which can be broken into different sections and can embed photos, videos and tweets.
It functions on the JSON API to set and display data and also pull back the entire material, even the media, if required and publish it somewhere else. Sounds cool right?
Ghost even offers a common platform to its members to collectively address issues and concerns and discuss solutions with other members in the Ghost Forum section.
Today, more than 455 million websites are based on WordPress. That’s nearly one-third of the total websites available. That’s the power of WordPress! Envisioned as a blogging platform, it has now also built its market as a Web Solution.
Creating an account on WordPress is a cakewalk where one can easily signup through emails. Like other CMS, WordPress as well offers various plans categorised as Free, Personal, Premium, Business and E-Commerce.
The Free plan is most appropriate for beginners who wish to pen-down their thoughts for the rest of the world. The rest four options are professionally oriented and thus charged upon the basis of a range of services (like customising domains, ad-free and monetised blogs) they provide to the users. Bloggers can even install third-party plugins under the Business and E-commerce plans!
However, the users must fully explore the already available colours, visual elements, backgrounds, themes and other free facilities before moving onto plugins since they will only add up further to your spendings.
WordPress even offers a self-hosted site WordPress.org where the users have complete control over their site, even on the technical codes behind it. Even this self-hosted version has its own community forum to discuss issues and concerns while operating it.
But one needs to have a hosting account (a web server) to access and work with WordPress.org. Bluehost is the most widely used server for the same.
Here’s a crazy fact - WordPress founder, Matt Mullenweg, himself uses Medium to express his thoughts and viewpoints.
Currently under the ownership of Google, the founder of Medium, Evan Williams was the person behind Blogger.
One can easily sign up into Blogger through Gmail and further link their accounts to other Google-based platforms like Picasa- Google’s photo gallery.
Blogger has been designed on 5 basic concepts - blogs, posts, comments, pages and users. The free default service provider BlogSpot is used as a custom domain which takes the user to blogger.com only.
User preferred custom blog designs can be downloaded from the web (either zipped or rar form) in the form of XML files and then uploaded from the hard drive by accessing the template tab and selecting the backup/restore option.
Blogger is user friendly since it is based upon WYSIWYG criterion. However, it can easily switch to HTML mode where the client can make changes according to their needs.
Many of you might be familiar with this famous platform where every level of a query is answered by no one but the users themselves. Quora is completely a volunteer-based service where contributors willingly spread their knowledge with others for free.
However, people active on Quora have an edge over the ones who are not. Active users can subtly provide links to their blogs or sites while relevantly answering the queries and redirect users to their monetised landing pages.
Many startups and organisations use this marketing strategy to build initial rapport and goodwill with their customers. Having a huge fan base, there are two drawbacks Quora faces - authenticity and monetisation.
The validity of the answers can be questioned and the users need to filter out the noise by viewing verified answers from following the right people and Spaces. Spaces are like pages which gain traffic from the quality of content uploaded and are managed by contributors, moderators and admins.
Secondly, quora only pays for asking the questions and not answering them. Another barrier is to attain the threshold limit of 10$ by building the reviews on the questions asked before getting the pay through Stripe, the only payment gateway Quora is linked to.
Quora has a huge fan base and thus uses a high level of search engine optimisation techniques like Medium.
It is a federated blogging platform built on ActivityPub, an open decentralised protocol providing APIs for creating, updating or deleting content.
But what does
federated mean? It refers to the interconnectivity yet interdependence between various small servers, known as instances in this case. Such servers which can communicate with each other fall under the domain of Fediverse servers. Recall the
Fediverse Instances we mentioned earlier? That’s what they are!
Plume supports collaborative writing where more than one user can collectively edit the existing blogs and increase the overall outcome of the blog.
Users can access one of the existing instances like Mastodon, Lorem, Let’s Write etc. or through federation supportive apps like WriteFreely. If the accessible instances do not fulfil user’s criterion, they have the option to create one of their own.
The blogs can be made visible both locally and on multi-platforms (a blog written on any one instance will also be visible on Plume). Readers can interact with their favourite writers by liking and commenting on their articles and get notified about new write-ups through email subscriptions.
Plume provides a whole guide for its installation and can either be installed through Docker, SnapStore, YunoHost server (or directly through YunoHost apps), Prebuilt binaries (for 64 bits Linux Machines) or directly from a web source.
Overall, it’s a good user interactive platform inclusive of recommendations and new ideas for the betterment of its community. The users need not worry about gaining an audience or putting up advertisements and just focus on one thing - blog writing.
Just like WordPress, Joomla is a web-content publishing platform. Over years of commendable service, Joomla has maintained its authenticity in the market by recording the minimum number of hacking cases; one of the features which sets it at par to WordPress.
It features pages (like homepages, static pages) and not posts with freely available options for themes. However, using unlimited paid themes or extensible plugins is a better option to make the blog appearance more user friendly.
Joomla Core further enhances the user experiences with features ranging from multilingual support to template-designing from scratch.
One can easily get familiar with the interface of Joomla, thanks to its featured community portal which provides open-to-all video tutorials, documentation and forums under Joomla Learn.
Moreover, instead of installing the latest 3.9.22 version, users can launch their websites through the portal - launch.joomla.org.
Users can even contribute to Joomla by sponsoring it (5$-4500$) and in return advertise their brands/websites on Joomla’s page.
Squarespace is a flexible platform for making websites for a variety of purposes - portfolios, photography, events, podcasts, professional services, CVs and blog writing as well.
With 14 days free trial, users can (and will have to if they want to continue with the services) choose from 4 reasonable plans - Personal, Business, Commerce Basic and Commerce Advance.
One free domain can be availed with all the plans on annual packages; a professional Gmail user account and accessibility and customization of back-end codes through Java and CSS remain exclusive to the latter three plans.
Users unfamiliar with the coding world, can also smoothly build their blogging website by signing up with their emails.
One can choose from ample themes options and further customise pages by adding, deleting, renaming and reordering them.
All elements within the pages are fully customizable according to the needs of the user - position, size, colours, appearances - you imagine it and Squarespace will put it into action.
The list doesn’t end here!
HubPages, Substack, Fiverr, Tumblr, Steemit and many more services with their unique functionalities and characteristics are available for users to ease the process of putting thoughts into words and building their blogs without any limitations.
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