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46 Comments

Building a Blog, need help picking a platform

I'm looking to embed a blog into a Softr.io website, primarily because I need a blog for SEO purposes.

Anyone have suggestions for easy to use blogging tools?

Main requirements:
-Great for SEO/ Indexes with search engines

Nice to haves:
-integrates with mailchimp

  1. 3

    So many options but my advice is don't use wix.

  2. 2

    Try WordPress with SEO plugin RankMath and multilingual plugin ConveyThis.

    And, yes, mailchimp plugin also exists on WP

  3. 2

    I'm in the same boat, there's just one problem, I don't want to manage the code. I can code, I love to code, but I don't want to code my blog. I just want to write.
    Currently, AnalystFoundry.com is hosted on Squarespace, but the thing is, I'm honestly quite disappointed with Squarespace's management of SEO. I'm no SEO expert and even I feel like something is drastically missing.

    Are there any "no-code" blog hosts (besides Medium, F medium...) that handle SEO really well?

    I would have made a new post but I felt like I was just regurgitating discussion already happening here. Plus, it might help OP and others to just be included in one post.

    1. 1

      Hey @Nclack, can you take a look at my reply here

      I feel like Swish may be what you're looking for.
      I am not sure if there are any SEO tools in particular you'd like to have. But if we don't already provide it, I'll be happy to work on adding that.

    2. 1

      my main problem is that i am building my site on softr.io, which does not have good blogging/seo features yet, so i am thinking I need to embed the blog using HTML.

      All I want is aan easy platform to write posts that is good for SEO. Using Softr is great for the other things I want to accomplish but I am unsure how the embedding of a blog onto the site will impact the actual domain for SEO, since the blog is from somewhere else?

      1. 2

        Embedding HTML (iframe) doesn't give you SEO, if I remember correctly.

        1. 1

          that's what I thought.. ugh.

  4. 2

    First, I don't understand your nice to have - how does a blog integrate with Mailchimp? They're just ..two different things. Did you mean your blog should allow capture of email addresses into Mailchimp? If so, Mailchimp itself gives you am embeddable snippet to capture email.

    Second, I have a super duper lightweight solution for you but before I pitch my product, I'll give a shout out to @thecrev who's building yemi.blog which solves the problem of managing the backend while allowing you to publish using markdown.

    I'm working on a blog platform to allow you to post using email - you compose your blog in Gmail or some such inbox provider, highlight text, embed images inline, create links, do what you will, then fire off the email. In a couple of seconds, you'll get a link to preview and approve the publishing of the post. If you like the post as-is, add some tags and metadata and hit publish, else send another email. to repeate the process

    Benefit #1 - no git, no markdown, no server, no plugins, no server, no database, no compiling or transforming content from one form to another. What you write in Gmail is basically what you see on the blog.

    Benefit #2 - you can make your blog look as "on-brand" as you want. My big peeve with blogs is that they're never exactly a match for my brand.

    Benefit #3 - since you are blogging from your inbox, you have no excuse not to blog.

    Roadblock #1 - your blog posts can't be overly big. All told, each post needs to be below say 5mb to get through email/inbox delivery rules. 5mb is plenty for a 2-4 embedded images and content.

    Sample @ https://moogle.cc/blog/ - hope you like it.

    1. 1

      this looks interesting, I need to embed the blog into my site. Here is a preview. I am worried all these solutions where I have to embed into the site impact SEO? SEO is obviously the reason I need the blog. If i use a third party solution that is hosted else where like on another platform or on medium, etc, does that impact the SEO?

      https://rentsmartdenver.preview.softr.io/?t=1613882351598

  5. 2

    If SEO is your primary concern, then WordPress beats Ghost.

    1. 2

      Ghost is faster than WordPress and the same thing for any other static site generator like Gridsome, etc.

    2. 2

      I'd be curious why you think so. I'm using Ghost, looked at the generated HTML of a post, and cannot find anything missing or invalid that would negatively impact it. I'm not an expert, though, so I'd be interested in your views. My (only) blog post so far: https://datagrab.io/blog/scraping-serps-to-find-long-tail-keywords/

      1. 1

        I need to embed the blog into my site, preview below. I am worried all these solutions where I have to embed into the site impact SEO? SEO is obviously the reason I need the blog. If I use a third party solution that is hosted elsewhere like Ghost,wordpress,medium, etc, does that impact the SEO? I need the main domain to benefit.

        https://rentsmartdenver.preview.softr.io/?t=1613882351598

        1. 2

          by the way, is datagrab your product? first time i'm hearing of it. My website is primarily based off webscraping. I did it in python though and store my data in airtable. The nocode web scrapers like automatio, simplescraper, didn't have the flexibility I needed but yours looks awesome!

          1. 1

            Oh, thanks! :) Glad to hear you like it! Yep, it's my little side hustle.
            SEO has several aspects, one of them being on-page optimizations, which you can do quite easily (though in reality, it won't count much). I found that the HTML generated by Ghost is OK; it shouldn't negatively affect SEO.
            The much bigger challenge is the link-building process. The more sites link back to you, the more relevant you are. This is much more important for rankings. But this takes hard work and commitment, a journey I'm on too. :) So good luck and don't give up! ;)

            1. 1

              joined your discord. Looking forward to staying in touch.

  6. 2

    Ahh I think wordpress is the best for your needs. That's what I'm doing for my tool Brutask lately.

  7. 1

    Upblogr can help you getting your Ghost blog & newsletter up and running in literally 5 min.

    You can order a 14-day FREE trial and use the "INDIEHACKERS" discount code to get the price down to 9.99EUR during the next 3 months.

    Cancel anytime 😉

  8. 1

    thanks everyone for the support!!!

  9. 1

    So many great suggestions here. However I would love if you give Swish.ink (my product) a chance.

    Quick note: I'm currently reviewing the pricing so don't let that put you off.

    Here are the benefits:

    • Very easy to get started and publish
    • Unlimited users, with roles/permissions
    • Can use your own domain, subdomain or even subdirectory(which is good for SEO).
    • Integrates to other platforms (like Medium) so you can still leverage on that distribution
    • For connecting to Mailchimp and any platforms, that's coming soon. I'll prioritize it for your sake 😁

    Let me know if you have any questions at all 🙏🏾

    1. 1

      I need to embed the blog into my site, preview below. I am worried all these solutions where I have to embed into the site impact SEO? SEO is obviously the reason I need the blog. If I use a third party solution that is hosted elsewhere like Ghost,wordpress,medium, etc, does that impact the SEO? I need the main domain to benefit.

      https://rentsmartdenver.preview.softr.io/?t=1613882351598

      1. 1

        As far as I know, embedding with an iFrame will not give much SEO benefits to the site the blog is embeded in. Also, since the iFrame itself needs to be hosted somewhere else, the external site is the one that gets any SEO benefits.

        If you decide to use your own domain, you have some options to get around this:

        NOTE: Since Medium does not allow custom domains, none of the options below work with Medium.

        ### 1. Sub-Domains

        The most common method is to use subdomains. With this method, assuming your domain is rentsmart.com, then you could map rentsmart.com to the softr site, and map a different subdomain like blog.rentsmart.com to Swish.ink (or the blogging platform of your choice).

        ### 2. Subdirectories

        Alternatively, you could use sub-directories. There are some articles (such as this and this) that say this is overall better for SEO, because while rentsmart.com and blog.rentsmart.com will be treated as different domains by Google, rentsmart.com and rentsmart.com/blog are the same domain and so, get ranked together.

        With this method, you send traffic from rentsmart.com to softr.io, but any traffic on a specific subdirectory like rentsmart.com/blog gets sent to your blog's server.

        To do this, you usually have to have a self-hosted setup, with something like WordPress.org, Ghost, or a static site builder.

        However, Swish also allows you to do this with our hosted service. There may be a little bit of configuration on your part, but if this is something you're interested in, I'm willing to:

        1. Help you set it up
        2. Make it even easier to do in the future, like one-click easy

        Does this help?

        1. 1

          This is super helpful and helps clarify things. At the end of the day, I want the best SEO possible.

          Today I made a decision to focus strictly on product and will circle back on blogging in the near future. I will certainly reach out when I am ready to get started.

  10. 1

    Just stick with WordPress / ghost. Don't overcomplicate a task. The content is more important and takes more time to produce

    1. 1

      See some of my other comments, I will take a look.

  11. 1

    I've used Eleventy for a couple of blogs recently and can't recommend it highly enough. It's fast, flexible and got a really gentle learning curve - you could probably have a site up and running from scratch in under an hour, and in minutes if one of the many templates available fits your needs.

    1. 1

      see some of my other responses, i'm stuck!

      1. 1

        I host my Eleventy sites on Netlify. Free hosting, custom domains (so you could host your blog at blog.your domain.com), free SSL, automated deployments whenever you check in a change to your GitHub repo.

        1. 1

          will check this out. I decided today not to stress over blog/SEO and just focus on product. Hope this post becomes helpful for people.

  12. 1

    If you are into Markdown, I would suggest giving a try to Gatsby. They are easy to setup with the availability of templates, compliant with SEO and easier to manage. I have hosted my personal blog on it and I love how easy it is get going with it.

  13. 1

    I've used wordpress in past but you have to worry about themes, plugins and ton of other things to maintain the blog.

    I use Umso for my blog: marketingmetrics.io/blog

    Although it's a bit expensive, it comes with advantages like hosting, easy to use website builder and a clean look.

    You may also consider webflow which is gonna be huge in few years.

  14. 1

    If you are into React development I would look into NextJS or Gatsby. Both have static site generators (so they are good for seo), and both have templates for blogs.

    If you are gonna go with something that is a solution. I would recommend keeping copies of your work, but ghost seems to be popular. Also idk what field this is forcusing on but it might worth it to see if there are niche communities with a platform. Kinda like dev.to

  15. 1

    I'm a big fan of Hugo. I've three blogs / landing pages using it:

    I've used tonnes of blog engines, including Ghost, wordpress, and others. Why I like Hugo:

    1. It's a static site generator, which means that what's online is just plain HTML / CSS. Very secure (I look at you, wordpress. Favorite target of hackers this stuff).
    2. No need to update an engine every two months with sweat and blood (that's why I went away from Ghost).
    3. It's written with Golang, which is a very fast programming language. You can generate tonnes of pages very quickly.
    4. You can overwrite any theme you want very easily.
    5. Super simple to deploy on a github page (you need to know a bit git and Bash scripting though).
    6. Super simple to deploy on a server using githooks.
    7. Many free themes available: https://themes.gohugo.io/
    8. Everything you write in plain text, no database and other moving parts which will crash in your sorry hands (markdown).
    9. Super easy to extend the markdown with custom shortcode.

    LOVE it!

  16. 1

    If it's a pure blog then I would suggest Ghost publishing platform

  17. 1

    Do softr allow you to integrate a blog into their platform?

    1. 1

      not yet, this is the problem. I need to embed some dynamic html from another platform like medium/ghost/wordpress into softr. So I dont know how this impacts the SEO.. I simply want to write blog posts using a platform that help the softr domain's SEO.

      1. 1

        What are you building in softr?

        1. 1

          here is what it looks like right now. it's pre launch of course as i'm figuring out the product and still need to build an audience/create content

          https://rentsmartdenver.preview.softr.io/?t=1613882351598

  18. 0

    Substack or medium :)

    1. 2

      ... both of which aren't hosted on your site and therefore don't contribute directly to your SEO...

      1. 1

        This is actually a problem I'm facing with Squarespace

        1. 1

          this is my exact problem! but with softr. I need softr to build the rest of my site. See some of my other comments.

  19. -1

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