Who doesn’t crave for food? It could be that mouth watering sizzler or just a healthy salad. You’re feeling too lazy to cook and just want to find the best restaurant to go indulge or the super chef within you is willing to try something new, it’s all fair as long as it’s about food. While there are some of us who are willing to share our food experiences, food travel diaries, or even few of our own kitchen hacks or recipes – these can all happen through a well presented website. A blog to showcase your passion and love for food.
While YouTube gives you a great platform to share your food recipes with the world using videos, there are many who approach cooking in a old-school methodical fashion. Most of them feel happy when they can find the same recipe’s ingredients, instructions and tips put up in a website in a texty format. In fact a lot of followers of culinary YouTube stars like Manjula’s Kitchen also go to the extend of printing the recipe page on the website before giving it a try in their kitchen. This is where a nice looking food blog compliments with your YouTube presence.
What’s more exciting is that a well presented food blog can be a great business. With just a little more effort of creating a recipe post by adding important sections like ingredients, instructions etc, posting images of the recipe and embedding your YouTube recipe video, you have a lot of valuable recipe content on a website that belongs to you. You could then work with Google Adsense and other Ad networks to put up culinary advertisements and pay you when users engage with culinary advertisements on your blog / website. In fact how you can make money from your recipe blog is a subject for another extensive post, we will surely write about that soon.
Now that you’re sold about the fact that you need to start a food blog along with your YouTube food channel, let’s look at some of the top platforms that let you do this without you getting into the hassles of website programming:
WordPress is the most popular searched platform on the web and is a great choice for all those who are fond of the term ‘customization’. WordPress comes in two forms, one is WordPress.org which is the self hosted version. Here you buy a custom domain name and website hosting service and install WordPress on it. Second option is WordPress.com where you actually host on WordPress which is free. With WordPress.com you cannot upload custom themes or plugins which can limit your blog’s growth. WordPress can seem a little difficult for those who are not so computer savvy, but once you get the hang of it, it’s going to be an easy task.
Can you believe it, a platform just for food blogs? Yes, Cucumbertown is the world’s first and largest platform for food blogging. I’m sure the founder of this one would’ve definitely been quite a foodie. It is part of Cookpad – an internet corporation specializing in the recipe sharing service. Being the first only food blogging platform, there are a few features which have to be paid more attention to like super easy analytics and the very user friendly recipe writer (wow a recipe writer, doesn’t that make your work so much easier). Cucumbertown’s design and user experience is unmatched among other food blogging platforms. Another reason why people choose Cucumbertown is the way it has optimised advertisement delivery on your website to get maximum revenues on ads. If you are not very particular about hosting and managing all the nitty gritty about your blog website, Cucumbertown is great option to consider.
Update: Cucumbertown has unfortunately shut down its operations. You can read more about it here.
Blogger by Google is an easy to use blogging platform. Blogger is easier to understand and work with compared to WordPress which is definitely a great relief for the ones new to blogging. Another advantage of Blogger is the fact that even if the traffic to your blog spikes up, you don’t have to worry about the servers crashing and you losing valuable audience because of that. If you are looking at a food blog with a lot of serious commitment, then this might not be a very good choice as Blogger has limited design options and it also lacks functions such as print recipe. And these are essential if you are looking forward towards sharing stories, experiences and recipes while you also make some good money.
Tumblr is another great choice for a newbie blogger. Tumblr stays right up the chart with Cucumbertown when it comes to user experience and the ease to create content. To work with Tumblr, you need not be a tech savvy, as Tumblr is easy to use and learn as well. Tumblr can cause a little pain too, as there are very limited designs available on this platform. Adding to that if you are planning to earn some good money, Tumblr can make it tough for you.
Squarespace is a familiar name among most of the culinary bloggers circles. It is easy to use and provides clean design which is something most people look out for. One of the most interesting features of Squarespace is the implementation of responsive-design to all its templates. It provides a web interface that scales the websites perfectly for any screen size. From mobile screens to laptops to desktops, it seems just perfect everywhere. Yes, Squarespace is easy to use but that doesn’t make it more intuitive than Tumblr or Cucumbertown. Squarespace works in something we can call a closed environment as it limits interaction with several other web services. Another thing that might seem like a drawback to Squarespace is the fact that it isn’t free.
With the gorgeous website design templates available with Typepad, it allows you to start writing on their hosted blogging platform at ease. So do you have a concept ready? Well, then all you got to do is start typing and watch your blog go live in a jiffy. Once you decide that food blogging is your cup of tea and you are willing to customize your site with your own domain name, Typepad will do it all for you.
Silvrback is a blogging platform that focuses heavily on design and user experience. Silvrback also provides you a number of features such as email subscriptions and custom domain support. To get going with your blog on Silvrback you got to be on an yearly subscription. If you are considering Silvrback, there are a few things to be kept in mind like it is available only in hosted form and there are limited design options.
Hope you got a preview of the top food blogging platforms you should check out before starting to write. If you are using any of these platforms, let us know how it’s been going for you. Also feel free to share other alternatives that users can check out in the comments section below.