Starting a blog can be a time consuming and daunting task.
Not only do you need to worry about promoting your blogs by learning SEO techniques and reaching out to new readers, you need to discover the ins and outs of the blogging platform you’ve chosen. But first, they need to choose a blogging platform.
Two of the major platforms for heavy text-based blogs are Blogger and WordPress, both offer a plethora of designs and features, which can be kind of confusing for newbie bloggers. Though they both offer eye-catching features, the best blogging platform for the novice blogger might not be the best for the advanced blogger. Another deciding factor you should keep in mind is the purpose of the blog. If you want to reach out to a large fan base and keep track of your visitors and statistics, you might not use the same interface as the blogger who simply wants to keep in touch with friends and family and set up an online presence as a way to create a virtual scrapbook or online journal.
The following is a comparison of Blogger’s and WordPress’s services as well as a list of each platform’s features, divided into the website’s pros and cons.
Since Google now owns Blogger, the company offers plenty of Google built-in features, like Adwords, Adsense and Analytics, making the site extremely useful for novice bloggers.Originally started in 1999, Blogger was one of the first user-friendly interfaces for bloggers. Pyra Labs, Blogger’s original creators, started this small company in San Francisco in the middle of the rise of the dot com. After a few years, the company started generating more users and traffic. By 2002, they were pulling in several hundred thousand users. After they were purchased by Google, the site didn’t change much, and they specialize in an interface that is easy to use for bloggers who do not need a ton of bells and whistles.
Blogger’s most attractive feature to first-time and novice bloggers is its cost: free. Newer bloggers should opt for a free platform that is easy to use and has step-by-step instructions. Blogger definitely delivers a user friendly interface with widgets that are easy for users to master. The site hosts a plethora of free templates, so bloggers can customize their viewers’ experience and create a visual presence that keeps their brand consistent. The site is also extremely reliable. Blogger’s upgrades are seamless, and the site is rarely down for maintenance or due to other issues, such as hackers. Many users also love that they can connect their Blogger account to their Google Adsense and Analytics accounts for seamless tracking.
While Blogger offers many basic features and a user friendly interface for novice users, they do not offer a lot of options for more advanced bloggers. Many bloggers complain (both novice and advanced) about losing their template customizations. While the simple interface is attractive to novice bloggers, many professional and advanced bloggers complain about the lack of high-end features and more advanced options. The features are also limited, and many bloggers complain about the post editing options and minimal comments options.
Created only a year before Google purchased Blogger, WordPress was created to give bloggers a more complex blogging platform. Its simplistic style was welcoming for users who wanted their photos and written content to shine instead of the blog widget’s bells and whistles.WordPress was created on PHP and MySQL & originally called b2/cafelog
The blogging platform markets itself to both novice and advanced users, as it offers an easy-to-use interface with simple features for new users but can be easily upgraded for advanced users.
A self-hosted WordPress blog will give you a lot more control over the look, feel and content you can publish on your blog, as well as giving you the autonomy to make money from blogging via various advertising and affiliate marketing platforms schemes. You will also have your own domain name which will look more professional than a blogspot.com sub-domain which you can get from blogger.
The technical requirements required to run a self-hosted WordPress blog are a little more advanced than those required for a platform such as Blogger. You will also need to pay for hosting but this can be as cheap as $3 per month.
If you want to dive straight in and start your own blog, then I always recommend that you use BlueHost. With an extremely easy WordPress installation process, plus a free domain name, you can’t go wrong!
Determining Your Needs
Depending on your blogging experience and the type of blog you want to start, both Blogger and WordPress are good options for novice and experienced users.While Blogger has been around longer than WordPress, as it stands, the site has not changed much over the years since it was purchased by Google. It is popular among bloggers who want to create an online diary or journal, highlighting big moments, such as family vacations, overseas travel and weddings. The easy-to-use analytics help users understand where their traffic originates, and users can easily link their sites to their other Google accounts.
While WordPress tends to be more popular with slightly more advanced users, the CMS has also targeted novice users with their easy-to-use publication tool and step-by-step set up instructions; however, the site’s functions exceed Blogger’s when it comes to advanced options and add-ons for more experienced bloggers.
Both platforms require little investment (a bonus for new users who don’t want to invest too much time or money), though WordPress offers you the option of upgrading to more advanced plugins and sophisticated themes.
If you are interested in setting up your own WordPress blog then check out my tutorial.
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All the best!
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