Before I even get into an exploration of the pros and cons of each of these routes, I have to say that either of them is okay. It’s just a matter of picking out the right one for you, largely based on the web design skills you may or may not have, the budget you have to work with and how much of your time you can dedicate to maintaining the technical side of your blog or website.
Okay, so if you’re thinking about starting up a blog of your own, should you hire a web developer to design and develop one for you or should you rather go the route of using a Content Management System (CMS) such as the likes of WordPress or Joomla. WordPress is undeniably the runaway CMS of choice because of the traction it has managed to gather and the support it receives from its generally open-source development model contributors. I would guess that their claim to be powering 25% of the web today has no reason to be doubted at all.
So as I touched on in the opening, it is indeed a matter of your own unique situation as to which option to go with. I’d say that if you have a decent budget to work with and you can hire a web developer, do exactly that – go with a web developer to develop your blog for you. That way you can specify exactly what it is you want and how you want it, right down to the finest detail.
The reason why I emphasise your budget with this option is because web developers don’t come cheap – well, decent ones in any case. Furthermore, you should commission your developer to create a custom Content Management System for you so that you can go ahead and publish content for your blog without having to depend on them for an ongoing service of updating the site for you.
The major advantage (which comes at a fee of course) of having a web developer design your blog for you is that you can have everything customised to your exact liking and specifications, whereas with something like a WordPress template the level of customisation is limited to a general structure which the blog will take.
Nevertheless, WordPress blog templates tend to offer enough flexibility for yours to look totally different to that of another blogger who used the exact same template, but there is definitely a limit to the amount of freedom of customisation you’ll have. A great advantage to using a template/CMS is that of just how much cheaper it is, which means you could quite easily create and maintain multiple blogs.
These days it’s in any case about your content – that’s what really needs to be unique and another advantage of using a CMS/template is the ability to install plug-ins such as Yoast SEO, which will guide you through the process of structuring your content so that it ranks higher in the search engines.
You’ll have to contend with many on-going updates with a CMS/template though…