Any content writer is aware that writing content means managing 20 tabs at once.
After all, you need to research, look for supporting images, find out the FAQs, look for sources and verify across multiple platforms.
Most writers work within the CMS they are posting on itself. However, CMSs are only meant for writing and editing.
They do not offer all the necessary tools for researching the content or tracking its performance. While plugins can solve such problems to an extent, they slow down the site. That’s where we come to Blogely – an all-in-one content marketing and writing space.
Released in September 2020, Blogely is quite a recent platform but that does not mean it is not worth its salt.
Now, why do we need something like Blogely?
If you have a blog, then you might need Blogely.
If you are tired of installing plugins onto WordPress to optimize your article, then you need Blogely.
Simply put, Blogely is an all-in-one platform that combines everything from SEO checking to article writing spaces to WordPress publishing. It offers a clean-cut UI that allows you to manage all your articles, oversee the traffic and publish simultaneously to multiple platforms.
Instead of looking for new plugins to look up keywords, or work across multiple tabs, you can perform everything within the Blogely site itself.
It also loads and responds so much faster than WordPress sites! Blogely can also act as an online portfolio for you to showcase your work across multiple sites in one place.
So, let’s take a look at how Blogely works and if it suits your needs.
The Blogely dashboard is one of the simplest things I’ve seen! I love the layout and the way everything is laid out in grids.
You can navigate to the drop-down at the top and check out your current articles, list of research documents, portfolio or content calendar. To see more options, one can click on Advanced options.
Advanced features include collaboration, plagiarism scans and AI assistants for writing. Some features like creating a workflow is still being refined by the Blogely team.
The Articles tab shows all existing pieces written along with their SEO score, publishing date and comments overview. You can earmark articles as favorites or edit one. The Portfolio section contains a grid layout of all your work. You can add your work along with the necessary description and details.
Blogely essentially displays a logo of your work.
When someone clicks on it, it directs them to the original page of your work.
You can sort your portfolio based on the type of content or industry. Overall, it provides a clean look to showcase one’s work. You can choose from a grid layout, linear layout, news feed-like view or tutorial-type view.
The Blogely writing space is divided into two sections (though you can expand each to full-screen).
The left side offers the “Assets’. Assets are the helping notes needed for writing an article. It includes research docs, image libraries, affiliate links, SEO checkers, etc. The right side is a simple writing panel.
‘Blogely works on the principle of blocks.
You can think of this as being similar to headings or blocks in MS Word. Each block is a header under which you can write the paragraphs needed. However, this also means that Blogely does not offer a single continuous space for reading like MS Word.
Instead, you see the article in parts, based on the block. You can use the arrows at the bottom to flip through the blocks.
Each block comes up with an H2 heading. Everything inside can have H3 healings and so on.
One of the main issues of content is that it often becomes boring.
The blocks act as a content guide to structure the article. Within a block, you can add as many sub-headings as you want. If you’re working as a team, then you can allow comment access to certain members.
However, to access the Libraries, Research tab or even Notes tab, one will have to update to a paid plan.
Blogely has also teamed up with Wordtune. Wordtune is a text editor. As an AI, it studies your writing patterns and makes intelligent suggestions to reduce your writing time. With a Blogely plan, you can get Wordtune at a 20% discount.
You can opt for a full-screen mode anytime.
The word count is displayed to the bottom left. The saving time for each document was a bit off. Unlike Google docs, SurferSEO or WordPress editors, Blogely does not perform continuous saves.
I do not know the exact timing of its autosave, but other than pressing the save button seems to be the only way to ensure safety.
Overall, however, to access the Libraries, Research tab or even Notes tab, one will have to update to a paid plan. Blogely has also teamed up with Wordtune. Wordtune is a text editor. As an AI, it studies your writing patterns and makes intelligent suggestions to reduce your writing time.
On the whole, the Blogely writing space is quite clean and simple. It aids the creative flow by minimizing distractions and the Research tab helps in performing quick cross-checks.
Workflow and Outline
If you exit the writing space, you are directed to the Workflow space.
This is where you can see the entire article as a whole with all blocks combined. All the sub-headings within the block will appear to the left as a table of contents. You can use the Collaboration tab to add members and restrict their editing access. You can now choose to publish or sell your article.
For selling, Blogely directs you to a page where you have to accept the terms.
One can now add the article description, industry it is aimed towards, and fix a price on it. Once you have completed the steps, the content will be listed for selling. You can access all the articles you have listed for selling.
If you have a client who has placed orders, you can perform the entire transaction via Blogely and access it on the Orders page.
Under the content for sale, you can see articles placed by other freelancers for sale. For each article listed, you can see its plagiarism scan results, keyword results, statistics like word count.
Authors can provide a PDF plagiarism report as well. Any article by you will also be listed in a similar way. As a client, you can create a job using the option for the same from the main dashboard.
The Research tool is a paid feature, and one can hardly fault the team for it.
The Blogely research tab offers a robust and smart tool. You can enter the topic you are working on and Blogely will return all the necessary paragraphs, articles and snippets are needed for this. They scan all top-ranking SERPs and provide the keywords, stats and quotes you need.
The Research results come in 4 tabs. The SERP tab contains three more tabs. Under this, the Analyse tab contains the sentence snippets. The Questions tab shows the important FAQs whereas the statistics tab offers just that. There is more than enough information here for you to not have to open a new tab to Google the topic.
Apart from this, you can access the Suggestions tab, Comments and Summary tab.
Blogely stores all this data for a period of 7 days.
The Research tool is quite useful and easily accessible. As far as the UI goes, I wish there was an option to push-pull the space covered by the research and writing tab. I would prefer the research tab to cover 1/3rd of the screen as opposed to half of it.
It’s hard for a writing tool to survive without offering some amount of SEO analysis.
Using the Research tool on Blogely, you can check the major keywords.
Using the SEO checker, you can ensure that you have used them in the right place. The Blogely SEO is similar to that of YoastSEO or RankMath. It simply alerts users about their keyword placement. There are various conditions (used keyword in heading, used keyword 5 times, etc.) that light up once it is satisfied.
It works on the same principles as other SEO checkers.
So, it looks for internal and external linking, metadata character length, images added, keyword placement and density and so on. For each condition you satisfy, Blogely assigns certain points which add up to the total points of the article. However, the check offered is extremely basic.
If you want to use multiple keywords and track them, then you will need an external plugin. External plugins slow down the system. Moreover, integrating the plugin requires an extremely long setup process and is certainly not recommended!
Now the credit points earned with the SEO tool can be used as money to spend in other areas.
You can also buy credit at 10 USD for 100 credits. The credits can be used to perform tasks for Plagiarism checking (2 credits, converting articles to PDF and so on. The scanning is performed by CopyLeaks.
Once done, the report will be available for public viewing if you list your article for sale. The credit system places an additional cost on the one already being paid to access the paid plans.
Nothing works better than self-motivation. But Blogely’s content calendar might help to some extent. At least, it helps in planning your week out, irrespective of whether you follow through or not! You can set up tasks, assign a word count and finish date. You can also assign a status to it like open or closed.
Now, Blogely does not offer alarms or notifications of any type.
And you can always procrastinate and keep changing the completion date to a later time. However, it does auto-update these tasks as they are linked to an actual task. So if you have written an article up to 1500 words, you can always see it updated on the calendar along with things like SEO score and keyword used.
This is a great feature for team collaborators as the editor can see at a glance which works are up to date and to what extent. As far as enterprises go, this is a neat little trick to manage large numbers. Again, this is a paid-only feature. And you need to pay another 9 USD per month if you want to add more people to your Blogely account.
As discussed earlier, you can put up your article for sale on Blogely or buy content posted on the marketplace.
But as of now, the Blogely marketplace is a starting feature and mostly empty. While I write this review, Blogely has only 2 articles up for sale. While it’s only been a short time since the platform is up, whether we will see a surge in this is doubtful.
There are various websites out of Blogely that offer similar services.
Blogely also does not have a clear, defined process that outlines how such transactions will take place. Most freelancing sites have quite detailed rules in place to prevent fraud, verify writers, etc.
The main issue Blogely faces here is that both buyer and seller profiles are the same. Perhaps creating a separate seller profile would aid in these transactions. One can also float a topic that they want to be written on (as a seller).
Blogely cannot directly publish to a CMS – you need a plugin.
WP users can use plugins like WordPress Sync.
With a single click, you can export your article and publish it on your site. Now the question remains as to how this affects your formatting. For the most part, the Blogely to WordPress connection is safe and you won’t have to change any header or format it. However, for articles with unique formatting, you might have to redo some of it again.
If you are not a WordPress user, then you may need to look at other plugins.
There are not many available. The common CMS plugins available are those for Wix, Medium, Blogger and Strive Chat. If you cannot find one, then another method would be to download the article as an HTML file and then upload it on the CMS of your choice.
But this will require you to use certain credit points.
The team has stated that they are working on several of Blogely’s own plugins and features. Given that the platform is not even a year old, this is quite expected. Currently, Blogely offers only the following integrations:
- Ghost – for publishing to multiple CMS platforms
- YoastSEO – for SEO analysis
- WordPress – as stated
The Blogely free plan allows you to write unlimited articles and create 1 content place portfolio.
If you list your articles for sale, Blogely takes a 15% commission. Higher plans include the Solo and Growth plan. The Growth Plan at 99 USD per month offers pretty much all that a content writer could ask for within a single platform.
The market commission is only 10% here.
However, with the credit system, there are many external costs. Even with the Growth plan, one can publish a total of 50 articles per month.
To add more people to the team, you will have to buy “Team Seats” for them.
As of now, Blogely does not offer any yearly plans. While being an extremely user-friendly and non-tech platform, the prices might make smaller businesses think twice.
Where Can Blogely Improve?
The Blogely free plan is really a platform introduction since you cannot perform most of the tasks with it that the platform specially offers. The free plan does not include research, keyword tools, or even publishing rights. However, it would have been nice if users could at least see how the research tool works before committing.
The team at Blogely seems committed to improving the platform with multiple improvements over the months.
New features have been rolled out within a space of months and it does seem like the team is constantly on their toes trying to improve the workspace. Hence, I am hopeful that we shall soon see many improved things. The team is working on setting up approval workflows and AI-powered editors.
However. I do wish they will tweak the writing space and research UI a bit more.
The writing space transition from workflow to the editor is jarring at best. The website does crash often. The lack of an auto-saving feature in a writing platform is quite disheartening. In a creative flow, even a loss of 5 minutes’ worth of work can be disastrous for the writer.
One good feature is that one can directly import a table from Google sheets into the writing space.
As someone who detests from creating tables, I cannot tell you how much I appreciate this. Inserting pictures is also easier as Blogely has an in-built image, video and GIF searcher. You can directly surf from Pixabay or upload via a URL. Blogely also has its own picture library that you can select images from.
Overall, the Blogely workspace is good for articles requiring medium-level research (mainly textual).
The all-in-one platform could be a really effective tool for someone managing their blog all on their own. Or for a small team of writers. Enterprises might actually want a platform that allows an overall view of the work process as well. Which is not at all within Blogely’s purview.