Saturday, July 24, 2010

WordPress VS Blogger

blogger

Oy! My head is spinning. I've just read through page after page comparing the pros and cons of using WordPress over Blogger and vice versa. I've been considering switching to WordPress. I keep hearing how much better it is than Blogger. The consensus seems to be that WordPress is more "professional".

Here are the major pros for (self-hosted) WordPress I've found so far:
  • easier commenting platform
  • for more experienced bloggers, has better functionality, full control of your content
  • all those plug-ins!
  • better for SEO (although some people don't think so)
Here are the cons:
  • self hosting will cost some ($)
  • higher learning curve 
  • switching could cause you to lose subscribers if you use feedburner no longer an issue

Here are the pros for blogger:
  • FREE
  • so simple a child could use it
  • it's owned by google (indexes quicker) (maybe just a rumor?)
  • you can edit script/css and have your own template
  • javascript is supported so ads are ok (only in issue in free version)
and the cons:
  • google owns your content (only if you don't have your own host?)
  • commenting can be a hassle for some
Have you made the switch? Did you run into any major problems?

Read more about importing from blogger.
Ready to make the switch? Check out Blogging with Amy's Tutorial!

UPDATE: I've got my new domain name (pinkcrabblog.com) I've got my host (1&1) I've got a great tutorial on how to set up WordPress with my hosting company. I will update when I make the switch!



*note that free wordpress (wordpress.com) and self hosted wordpress (wordpress.org) are different.

*Read how it all turned out!

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28 comments:

Lindsay Blogs said...

Your last two cons for Wordpress are actually non-issues if you are on a self-hosted platform. Once you do that, you can do anything you want with your site. It's only on the free WP that you don't have complete control.

Personally, I like WP better. It's much easier for me to work with since the plug-ins mean I don't have to mess with the coding (HTML/CSS or otherwise) and I love that. Also, you're right. The commenting is so much nicer for the commenter and easier to reply to directly for the blog owner. No more "no-reply" emails to deal with.

Melissa said...

Thanks for clarifying! It was a lot of information to surf through :)

Pepper said...

You are really comparing Wordpress.com versus Blogger here. Please make sure you can tell the two apart. I know you edited a couple things, but there are still a couple things that are not quite right. And I hope you don't have a problem with your reply but I want to make sure the right info gets out there.

more image space (3GB)- This is wordpress.com on WP.org (self hosted) you get as much as you buy!

self hosting seems the way to go ($$$)-

Cost of hosting yourself is actually pretty cheap unless you are hosting a lot of pictures. But even then you can purchase a plan that can cover you on that.

You can buy hosting for about $20/year (with limited space and bandwidth) and a domain for $8. If you are a small blog this will do great for you. Even my blog would work on these plans. I just host my pics on flickr.

If you need more space or bandwidth you can purchase a larger plan, and you can always upgrade at anytime with most hosts.

If you want you can even purchase a unlimited plan for about $5/month. That is not very much and if you have that many visitors on your blog you should be monetizing your blog.

no advertising unless you pay (really?)

I'm not even sure what you are talking about here. Do you get free advertising with blogger? Then I guess this could be a con. But then you are going to also get the visitors that will give you more respect b/c you are on WP and not on blogger.

it's owned by google (indexes quicker)

This is a rumor and as far as I've heard google claims this is not true.

So here is the info I know as I've used WP for over 5 years on a self-hosted website.

Hope you don't mind,
Pepper

Melissa said...

Thank you pepper! I meant you can't display ads unless you pay, not advertising, sorry, fixed that. I guess all these things pertain to the free version, like you say. Thank you for commenting! :)

Zoe said...

Self-hosted Wordpress all the way!

You have so much more control, its easier to change up the layout and widgets and plugins are easy to find.

Comments are easier to leave and moderate.

And of course, because its self hosted you own and retain all copyright over everything. If you do anything that violates the blogger.com terms of service they could delete your blog (i've seen it happen). You're always better off owning your space on the net IMHO.

Serenity said...

Self-hosted WordPresss #FTW. Honestly, I think if you are serious about your blogging, this is just the way to go. far too many limitations with Blogger.

Melissa said...

Yes, I think these are the main reasons pulling me toward WordPress. Blogger is geared more for beginners and Self Hosted WordPress gives you the ultimate control. Thanks for the feedback everyone! Keep it comin'...

Just Another Mom of 2 said...

If you're really looking to focus on expanding your blog as your "brand", Wordpress is really the way to go. It will give you more freedom, and the ability to control more content, and not be at risk of having Blogger decide your blog violates rules or such.

Here is a fantastic article regarding the differences and how to make the decision between the two:

http://theunexperiencedmom.com/2010/02/moving-from-blogger-to-wordpress.html

Lisa said...

And remember that WP has a great import tool so you don't lose anything you did in blogger :) All your posts can come with you!

WP all the way (and I started on blogger myself)

Melissa said...

Awesome, thank you for that link! :)

Sharon said...

WP for me! And I would be glad to help you with the move (it's free if you purchase your hosting through my affiliate link!)

http://www.goodtrueandbeautiful.com/tech/thinking-about-moving-to-wordpress/

Patrice said...

Love this pro/con list. It is such a hard decision! I have heard that it can cost like $100 a year or something and I don't have that kind of money. I don't even have a regular income, I'm a college student!! If it weren't for the cost, I would consider more definitely switching to WP. I really don't have any issues with Blogger, but I have heard so many great things about WP & that people have trouble commenting on blogger blogs which I don't like!

Melissa said...

Thank you Sharon, I'll keep you in mind :)

Patrice: Blogger being free is a definite plus! I think if you get the self hosted wordpress and only pay the hosting fees + domain name it should come to around $60 a year? Don't quote me though, someone commented it can be as low as $28 a year, so try to research some of the hosting companies and see if maybe you can swing it if you still want to switch. I'll keep updating as I go through the process, so stay tuned! :)

The Empress said...

I did not know there were two different kinds of wordpress!! thank you!

Dee said...

I made a little list up about this EXACT same thing a few months back. I intend to stay with Blogger for now though. I mean... I've almost got my blog where I want it. I don't wanna loose my edge on that. Hehee...

The choose is ultimately up to what you are most comfortable. Never let the 'popular' choice sway your decision (too much). :)

Take care!
Dee

zahirah.com said...

If I were you, I'd make the switch to WordPress.com (the free version, not self hosted). You can import your entire Blogger blog in just one click, and you can mess around with it and see if you really want to change before notifying on your Blogger blog.

Regarding your concerns:
# self hosting seems the way to go ($$$)
I'd disagree with this. If you go with WP.com, you get Akismet antispam for comments for free. It's well worth it.

# higher learning curve.
I disagree. WP.com is really easy to learn.

# no advertising unless you pay (really?)
On WP.com, this is true. No AdWords.

Katie @ The Kouture Mommy said...

I am a WP lover as well, it is so much easier in my opinion. And honestly you can change the css/html in WP too. It might be a little more work to do it in WP, but you can still make changes to a template to make it your own version.

Melissa said...

Thanks for the tip zahirah, everyone has recommended wordpress.org thanks for the fresh perspective!

Melissa said...

Thanks Katie, that is good to know! I'm a bit of a geek and like to tweak things sometimes.

From Tracie said...

I am definitely thinking about making the switch.

Right now the cost issue is the only big thing that is holding me back.

When did I become my Mom said...

I made the switch from Blogger to Wordpress. I guess you could say I'm ready to take my blogging to a more "pro" level and therefore there are some SEO objectives I want to achieve, and the ability to host whatever content I want (vs being limited to images/video with Blogger) are what pushed me to make the switch.

Blogger is very powerful and should not be underestimated. In my experience, people are more aware of how to accomplish certain things in Wordpress and so they recommend the switch, but for the average bloggy person, Blogger is more than adequate.

Blogger's new template designer allows you to revamp and customize your look without a lot of effort.

Blogger DOES ALLOW STANDALONE PAGES - but they limit it to 10. That's more than enough for most bloggers.

Wordpress has nested comments and email notification. Both are possible in Blogger via the IntenseDebate plugin and CommentLuv is also available via IntenseDebate for Blogger blogs.

Blogger has teamed up with Amazon to anyone to become an Amazon affiliate and earn revenue by simply highlighting keywords and linking them back to relevant products at Amazon, offering a zero-risk opportunity to earn a little extra income with your blog.

Blogger now allows built-in sharing ability via Mail, Twitter and Facebook buttons.

The fact that Google owned my content when I ran a Blogger blog was a deterrent for me personally, but that's something for each individual to weigh.

At the end of the day I think anyone considering the switch needs to be very clear about what they expect in return for the investment in self-hosting and Wordpress. It can be very rewarding, but so can blogging with Blogger.

Melissa said...

Excellent points! This is why it has been such a hard decision, I'm truly torn and still weighing my options, Thanks for your comment!

Selena said...

Hmmmm... Your post sounds so pro-WP that I was surprised to find when I clicked to leave a comment, I was at Blogger!

Blogger was the only platform that helped former AOL Journals users transfer their blogs back in 2008. Thanks for that, Blogger.

I am very happy with Blogger. For $10/yr, I get my own domain name and Google Apps. I have customized my template to the max and I am loving the new stand alone pages (although I figured out how to do this before the implemented pages.)

I use WP for another blog I guest publish at and from the compose standpoint I don't see a difference from Blogger.

One question: Are you sure about Google owning me? Because if they do, why can I transfer my blog away?

Thank for the post.

Melissa said...

Selena, thanks for advocating for blogger! I've read on several posts that google owns your content and that some blogs have even been removed by them. I think this may pertain to only blogspot blogs. If you host your own blog this shouldn't be a problem. But anyone is welcome to correct me if I'm wrong :)

Thanks again for stopping by!

Becky said...

I need to read all these comments. I think wordpress indexes quicker. I've used both but I use blogger too.

Alana, Author of Domestically Challenged said...

I just switched from Typepad to Wordpress and am still getting used to it. I like the custimazation, but wish it was as easy for me to make design changes. I would love to be able to do everything myself, but I just don't have time.

Good luck!

Daenel said...

Hey, visiting on the recommendation of Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman (http://patrice0x0x.blogspot.com/) and she's right, your post is informative. I made the switch from Blogger to Wordpress about 4 months ago and I'm so happy I did it. I like knowing that I own my content versus a big company and I enjoy the flexibility that I get from being able to manipulate the themes/CSS, etc.

Lynda said...

Great article, however you don't need to lose your feed subscribers if you're using feedburner. You can use Feedburner in Wordpress too and you can just change your feed URL in the feed details to point to your new RSS feed. Easy-peasy.

Naturally, I'm all for wordpress. I love Pepper's reply! Wordpress is always free - the hosting, of course, is not if you're self-hosting. I've been paying $10/month in hosting for 9 years. A lot of money oveall, but I've never really missed it.