Things I wish I knew before starting a blog
You decided you want to start your own blog, went through a quick 'research' and probably even tried Wordpress. You then saw that Wordpress is not actually just 'Setup and Go', because you imagined the final product a lot more... alive? Well, let me give you my view on the subject.
"Just create a Wordpress blog"
Through my research before starting this blog, I noticed a lot of people are promoting Wordpress as a platform. Also, I think you already know Wix is promoted left and right for it's drag and build features. In my honest opinion, I think it's always best to have complete control over what you have, so I would say getting a server and creating one from scratch is quite the best option. But hey, that's my opinion.
Wordpress is fine, don't get me wrong. It's a great tool for any level of knowledge. For example, if you know nothing about CSS/HTML(you won't need much HTML if you are creating a Wordpress blog) this is a great way to extend your knowledge with live visual examples of what you build. However, if you want your website to look professional and you have your overview on how the final product should look... well, then you would probably need to buy a theme as the free ones are not that great. At least I did not found anyone that suits my needs.
If you decided to go with Wordpress, I can suggest you do some extensive research on different themes and finding one that suits your needs best. An advice from me? Don't rush and buy a theme from Themeforest because even if it has some great products(the HTML theme for my website is from there. It's called Ave Html), a lot of people are posting trash themes, trying to earn some quick bucks.
Okay, you decided to go with Wordpress and started a research on the best theme in the world. Then I am positively sure you saw Divi and not only once. Well, yes. Divi, in my opinion, is a great theme/plugin with a bunch of great tools to get your final product to look exactly as you imagined it would. Also, there are tons of tutorials from the creators themselves on how to adjust it. On your part, you must only know what to search for. Divi can help you learn a lot of CSS tricks as well. Overall, my experience with Divi was great and continues to be such.
In my opinion, having a Laravel + HTML/CSS/JS application is one great way to learn new things. Especially by creating a Blog. If you go with the decision you are going to get a Blog from zero on a PHP framework, using your own HTML+CSS or just building on top of a theme(only for frontend), then you are on the right track of learning a bunch of new skills. If you decide to build your Blog on own server, for example on DigitalOcean then you will also learn some basic functionality of the command line in Linux.
You will also exceed your frontend skills by googling left and right "How to do this, how to do that". In my opinion, the feeling of a finished product is not compared often. Even though I don't finish my projects, when I do - it feels great!
Just go and research. Find the best solution for your needs and start building. At the end of the day, you lose nothing. You will either learn a bunch of new skills and have a finished product, or at least learn a bunch of new things.
Best of luck and be safe!
Author: Denislav Gavrilov