Medium vs WordPress: Which One’s Better For Your Blog?
2019 August 5th at 10:11
The choice of Medium vs WordPress can be tough: these are two great blogging platforms, however, they offer quite different models to present your content.
While WordPress is generally well-known and appreciated content management system, Medium aims to be a platform specifically built for successful blogging.
You want the best environment for your blog to grow, so this article here is to compare one to another and find out which better suits your needs.
What is Medium?
Medium, as it describes itself, is both - a publisher and a platform. It allows to easily create posts and publish them on one platform along with other bloggers.
So it’s not simply a site to publish your blog, but a content curator. Writers publish their blog articles and Medium arranges them to be seen by all readers interested in the topic.
Each visitor sees a personalized homepage that promotes interesting stories of different writers, tailored to their specific interests.
Thanks to this, Medium is, in many ways, the social network for blogs. It makes it simple for users to follow and share blogs and stories, and to discover new blogs that relate to their interests.
What is WordPress?
WordPress.com is a platform allowing to create various types of websites. You can build not only a simple blog - here you get a separate website that can be populated with blog content as well as static pages.
And all that can be customized with different themes and plugins.
Upon registration, you get a WordPress-hosted website with a possibility to upgrade it for a bigger plan with more powerful features. But to start, it's a free and quick solution to build your blog.
Note that you might run into a WordPress.org which is a different product as it offers content management software. Meaning, hosting services and a domain name has to be purchased separately.
But in this article, we are reviewing WordPress.com as it is a more similar product to Medium. Both offer a platform to simply register and publish your work.
Medium vs WordPress: Comparing the Main Features
Both platforms are big players in the blogging field, loved by millions. To find the best solution for your blog, here's a rundown of the most important features of Medium and WordPress.
Medium Offers A Better Writing Experience
When it comes to writing the content, Medium blogging wins with a clean and simple interface.
Publishing a post on Medium will take only a few minutes. The same post on WordPress could take 30 minutes to format, and includes a lot of extra hassle.
The publishing tools are structured differently in Medium and WordPress.
Medium gives you a blank page with only a few formatting options and simple embedded images.
You write straight in, add pictures or link videos. There are just a few and very basic font formatting options - everything stays with the general style of Medium.
WordPress, on the other hand, comes with a whole world of plugins and additional options. There are many more formatting choices not to mention that you choose the template and set configurations on how you want the website to look.
Compared to Medium, WordPress can be confusing to figure out the built-in versioning and post categorization tools, or even navigating the administrative dashboard to even get to the post editor.
Another thing, when you are writing in Medium you can see exactly how your post will look as you’re writing it. The way it appears on your screen is the way your readers will see it.
In WordPress, you need to click the ‘Preview’ button, which will then load a version of how your blog post will look. That’s a big difference for anyone who wants to put out a finished, quality-looking blog post as quickly as possible.
WordPress Is Way More Flexible
The complexity of WordPress can require some learning but in exchange, you get a very customizable platform. Besides creating great content, you might want to build an original environment of your webpage. And to do that you more editing possibilities for visual construction.
Starting out as a blogger, you want a simple design and a comfortable space. However, imagine if your project gets a little more serious. In such a case, WordPress has you covered: you can easily improve the functionality of your website with the plug-ins and themes.
So, the choice between Medium vs WordPress for blogging gets trickier when thining about customization. Medium is fast and easy to use in large part because it offers just a fraction of the customization features that WordPress has on hand.
But all Medium blog posts look mostly the same. Black text on a white page, with very little to distract from the writing itself.
WordPress blogs, on the other hand, can be completely different from one another even though they were created with the same platform.
The reason is that WordPress allows you to install different themes on your site, gives you access to add custom code to your theme and individual blog posts, and even lets you use plugins that can change the look and feel of your site.
One of the good examples is the ability to get a domain name. If you upgrade for a WordPress paid plan, you can get a custom domain name. This way your website stands out with a distinctive name.
Meanwhile with Medium, there is no way of getting a domain name (which could look like yourwebsite.com) - here you are always under the Medium's address (looking like topic.medium.com/title-of-your-article).
Of course, the free WordPress.com plan does not allow the full customization spectrum. However, it still is much more than Medium offers.
WordPress Paid Plans Improve Your Website
Both platforms offer entirely free plans and also have paid plans. However, the upgrade means different things for WordPress and Medium.
Paid WordPress.com accounts range from $5 to $25 per month. You are getting a custom domain, more content storage space, and the ability to use custom themes and plugins.
Also, you can strengthen your website's monetization, sell products, connect the site to social media and so on. All to improve the functionality of your website.
Now the Medium's upgrade works on a different logic. The 'Premium’ subscription is available for $5 per month or $50 per year. But it doesn't offer advanced new features for your blog. It is actually an improvement from a readers perspective the plan allows you to read ‘Premium’ blogs.
The idea here is to create a space where the writer is supported for their good work. As a blogger, you can mark your post as only available with the 'Premium' plan and collect money this way.
Direct Monetization With Medium
Medium allows making money from your blog posts way more straightforward than WordPress.
With Medium's ‘Partner Program’ you decide whether your post should be available to ‘Premium’ members only. If you choose to put up that paywall, you get a few cents or more every time a ‘Premium’ member reads your post.
On the other hand, you lose the part of the audience which uses free access. So, if you want to spread your word widely, you probably would skip this feature.
With WordPress, making money from your blog requires far more effort. First, you must invest your own money - have either a self-hosted blog at WordPress.org or a ‘Business’ account on WordPress.com for $25/mo.
Then you have to convince readers to sign up for a subscription for your site. And unlike on Medium, where a ‘Premium’ subscription allows visitors to read thousands of blogs, subscribers to your site will only get access to your content.
Of course, the 'Business' plan will give more possibilities power up your website. However, if you just want to concentrate on writing, the extra work you have to do with WordPress might not excite you.
Medium Has A Stronger Social Community
Introducing your work to new readers is way easier with Medium. That's because this platform functions as a social media-style publisher.
While WordPress leaves you to promote your work on your own, Medium offers every user a homepage that displays posts from blogs they’re following as well as posts that are popular across Medium.
In contrast, a WordPress blog is standalone. Users have to go to your website to find the latest blog posts since there is no aggregator homepage across WordPress blogs.
On the other hand, Medium has its content policy, which means that your posts can be removed if they don't fit with the platform. Sure, it's not something too strict, however, you might feel somewhat restrained. And with WordPress, the policy is yours to make.
That said, both Medium and WordPress offer social sharing functions to promote your blog posts on Facebook, Twitter, and other big social networks. And of course, you can directly share links of your posts to other websites.
- Easy setup
- Comfortable writing environment
- Open publishing platform
- Customizable blog
- Flexibility for blog growth
- Advanced monetization
- Minimal formatting options
- No unique domain name
- Strict content supervision
- Complicated interface
- Free plan is limited
- Requires advanced setup
Medium vs WordPress: Easy vs Complex Solution
The choice depends on your needs: Medium provides a very easy blogging platform with a community of readers, while WordPress offers powerful tools to create an original website with a possibility to grow.
If you just want a blog rather than a full-fledged website, Medium is right here for you. It is extremely easy to use and offers a community where your posts are promoted to new visitors.
WordPress, on the other hand, is weighed down by its complex pricing and hosting options. But, it offers many customization options and much more control over the looks and content of your blog.
The best thing is - both WordPress or Medium can be used for free. So go ahead, and see for yourself which platform is best for your content!
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