When I first started blogging, I blogged at Bravejournal. I liked the set up there, but I hated that I had to use a Bravejournal address, instead of my own domain. So, I did some research on blogging platforms and WordPress seemed to be the most popular and flexible, so I chose it. And I am so glad that I did.
Here are some of the things that I love best about WordPress:
I love that I don’t have to manually update my sidebar, instead I have widgets that do it for me. I use the Recent Posts and Recent Comments widgets to let all my visitors know the latest news at my blog. Which means less work for me!
When I visit a blog I love to see the Shareaholic plugin at the bottom of their post, because if it is an interesting post I want to tweet it to all of my followers. I definitely would not have been able to do that at my old Bravejournal blog. I also love the Breadcrumb NavXT plugin, which I hope makes my blog easier for my visitors to navigate.
If it was an option to schedule posts in advance at Bravejournal, I never figured it out. But it is definitely a feature of WordPress and I love it! I feel like being able to schedule my posts has made me a better and more consistent blogger. Knowing that I don’t have to publish what I write immediately, takes a lot of pressure off having to blog everyday. If I know I am going to have a busy week, I write all my posts on my days off, and schedule them for the rest of the week. That way there is something new for my visitors no matter how busy I am.
Creating your own theme
For me, part of the fun of having a blog and website is coding my own layout. Geeky, I know, but true! At Bravejournal, I could customize my colors and background then choose from 5 or 6 different layouts, but that was it. Boring! With WordPress, I can use my own graphics and code my layout/theme myself, which I think is really cool. I used this tutorial to learn how to make themes.
So, what’s your blogging platform? Do you use WordPress? What do you like best about it? What plugins and widgets do you recommend? Let me know in the comments!