Is Substack A Good Replacement For WordPress?

Is Substack A Good Replacement For WordPress?

For quite some time, I have been trying to wrap my mind around the reasons why someone would abandon WordPress and move over to Substack.

By the way, I have nothing against Substack and I want everyone to know that they are free to choose whichever publishing platform they like.

It is just that I am a bit baffled that someone would leave an SEO-friendly content management system like WordPress for a publishing platform that, by default, is not as strong in the area of SEO.

Damn! What is it about Substack that has caused so many people to switch to it?

People Can Get Paid For Their Writing On Substack

One of the nice things about Substack is that, from day one, you are allowed to promote your content for a fee (All Substack wants is just 10% of your monthly earnings).

Now, before anything lucrative can take place, you will need subscribers β€” a large number of people who would be willing to pay to read your articles.

If you are just getting started you will have to wait a while for your readership to grow (And, that could take a very long time).

People Also Have The Option To Provide Their Readers With Free Content On Substack

Not everyone who publishes content on Substack charges subscribers a fee to read it.

So, you can rest assured knowing that you would be able to peruse articles freely on Substack.

By the way, authors on Substack can have both free and paid content; it all depends on which articles the authors chooses to provide free as well as those that they would like to put behind a paywall.

The Substack Editor Is Easy To Use

If you can find your way around a word-processing program, you are more than capable of using the Substack editor.

Anyone curious about how the Substack editor works should take the time to read, How to Use the Substack Editor.

Oh well, it is nice to know that Substack have kept their editor simple.

In all honesty, I have learned how to use the Block Editor proficiently (Therefore, I have no issues whatsoever typing and formatting my blog posts on WordPress).

On a positive note, all of the content on my WordPress blog is free for anyone to read and I do not publish blog posts anywhere else.

Some People Love Simplicity

To those of you who adore anything simple, Substack just might be your proverbial cup of tea.

The themes are all standard; they are not fancy (They remind me a whole lot of the uniform look of Medium).

On Substack, the emphasis is on the written content and not how the layout of the personal writing space looks.

The God’s/Goddess’s truth is that the aesthetics of Substack is way too bland for me.

Despite the horrible-looking themes on WordPress, I can still choose one and customize it to my liking and still stand out from the crowd.

The Interaction On Substack Is Rather Poor In Comparison To WordPress

I do read articles on Substack regularly.

What I have noticed is that a large percentage of articles on Substack are without any comments (Hmm. Apparently, the people on Substack are not too keen on leaving comments in the comments thread of their fellow authors).

I love comments; making and receiving (And, most of the bloggers on WordPress are not afraid of commenting either).

Plus, it is no huge secret that WordPress is community oriented.

Substack Is More Focused On Writers

Substack can be used for:

  • Disseminating newsletters.
  • Publishing blog posts.
  • Creating podcasts.

Regarding blogs, Substack’s target users are writers.

Therefore, if you are a photographer who uses your blog to showcase your photography, you would be better off blogging on WordPress.

Theoretically, you can still display your photography on Substack; but publishing that kind of content may or may not get any views there.

The Bottom Line

Substack, in my opinion, is in no way a good replacement for WordPress.

Truthfully, both WordPress and Substack have their advantages and disadvantages.

It all boils down to what you need from a publishing platform.

Substack will fit the needs of some writers.

And, of course, WordPress will be the most appropriate choice for some people.

My advice is to use whatever feels right for you; whether it be Substack or WordPress.



  1. vwani says:

    I think substack is a good platform for established writers who have huge followers on there social media platforms.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. πŸ™‚ I also believe that.

      Thank you for reading and commenting!


  2. I can’t imagine anyone paying to read a blog unless it’s someone famous or if it’s adult content. WordPress does have a subscriber-only option in their premium plan, but I haven’t come across anyone who uses it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing your perspective!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Very useful and informative piece on Substack. I haven’t visited this platform yet, but your post has intrigued me to visit Substack just for the sake of a comparison.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ The nice part is that you do not have to join Substack in order to have a look around.

      Thank you for participating in this insightful conversation.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A very thoughtful comparison of the two platforms, Renard. I flirted with the idea of posting on Substack, but as you said, the aesthetics of Substack is way too bland.

    My blog has a heavy emphasis on book cover art, so visuals are important. I don’t have a slick looking theme, but one of the benefits of WordPress is tailoring the site to suit my personality. I like creating Canva images and using them in articles. I started blogging with subzero design skills and even less tech knowledge. Although it’s a hassle sometimes, I’m glad I had to learn some coding (and am still learning more) as well as develop an eye for graphic design, which is essential for WP. But those skills will help me in future, hopefully when publishing a book!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you for your valuable input, Jacqueline.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. kounselling says:

    I like WP and with my limited IT skills would find it a hassle too much to change to anywhere else.
    But what bothers me and I already did mention this, I get only a handful of views for my posts on WP, hardly any more than likes, which is very, very few. All my additional views come from fb (just views, no likes), but how I get these views I don’t know that either.
    Maybe I need some IT help to unblock something… truly at a loss…?


    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you for telling me that you prefer using WordPress. A person does not need IT skills to make the best of this version of WordPress.

      However, if you were self-hosted, you would need a greater understanding of how things work.


  6. Grant at Tame Your Book! says:

    You nailed a key aspect of WP, Renard. SEO is the gift that keeps on giving without Twitter, Facebook, and all the other social media platforms. And if someone wants to put up a paywall for their newsletter, today’s WP tools make it easy. For some, Substack is the path to follow, but I found many more advantages and opportunities with WP.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing that with me, Grant.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. BluntPathway says:

    I didn’t know about Substack, I just learned about it from your post. Its good to know that there are other platforms to explore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ WordPress is not the only content management system out there (There are many).

      Thank you for reading and commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Seoul Sister says:

    Great information, I was curious about Substack. Thank you πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ You are welcome, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Eugenia says:

    Substack is too bland for me. I enjoy using images to enhance my writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Despite Substack being very bland, users can add images to their posts.

      Unfortunately, there are no choices where themes are concerned.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Eugenia says:

        It sounds interesting, Renard. Thank you for the information.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Kathy says:

    I like the community feel of WP- the give and take among readers. My curiosity is tweaked. I may go look at Substack just to know.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Yes, Kathy. There is no community quite like the one on WordPress.

      It certainly would not hurt to have a look at Substack.


  11. Hetty Eliot says:

    I didn’t realize anyone could join Substack, I thought it was a site for independent journalists and the like. Learn something new every day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ˜‰ Well, now you know, my friend.


  12. Kevin says:

    Very useful article, thank you! If SS does not have the vibrant interactive and supportive community that we have on WP, that for me is a major disadvantage of SS.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing your perspective, Kevin.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Emma says:

    Informative post, thanks. I’m thinking of moving to Substack, though not necessarily ditching my WordPress account.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thank you, Emma.

      It is more than okay for you to move to Substack and I am pleased to know that you would not be ditching your WordPress account (WordPress is where all of the action is).


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