A lot of time has passed since the first blog appeared online – similar publications existed, of course, even before, but the term itself was not invented until the late 1990s. From an online journal written by a single individual the blog has evolved to an alternative to online newspapers, with a more personal perspective on things. And blogs are still very popular, even after more than two decades – companies and individuals are writing blogs as a more personal way to talk to their audience. Let’s take a brief look on blogs in 2015 – to put a finger on what has changed and what has stayed the same in the last 25 or so years.
1. WordPress is the most popular blog platform – and more than that
Back in the day blogs were hosted on dedicated platforms, and everything was good – until Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little built the first version of WordPress. Actually, the project was a fork of b2/cafeblog, but has quickly grown over its origins, becoming the most powerful open source blog platform by 2009. Today WordPress powers over 23% of the top 10 million websites on the internet, with more than 60 million of the total using it.
WordPress is still the best bet if you want to build a self-hosted blog – and many other things, from webshops to affiliate websites, writing about anything…
2. Self hosted on a .com still beats anything else
Although there should be no discrimination between top level domains, a .com will always rank higher than anything else. It has to do with the visitors’ expectations – visitors default to .com when they are not seeking for national or local websites. Also, it makes them more comfortable, and they perceive it much more professional than any other TLD. Google also likes .com more – actually, it’s true for all old generic domains, like .net or .org – because most of the biggest and most trusted websites are hosted on .com domains.
3. Mobile responsive themes are a must
The number of people routinely visiting websites using their mobile devices has already outgrew those using desktops, so a mobile responsive website today is a must. Especially since Google – followed by Bing – has decided to favor mobile friendly websites in its mobile search results. Mobile is the preferred medium for millenials to search for information today.
+1 – Speed and new forms of digital content
At the beginning blogging was all about text, with some images added to spice up the content. Today things have changed a lot – due to the increasing speed of broadband, people expect to listen and watch besides just reading. People can listen to podcasts and stream videos easily on the go due to the increased speed of mobile broadband, too, and the most popular YouTubers are cashing in fat checks every month because of their large following.