Saturday, 21 April 2012

Switching from Blogger to Wordpress: Should You?


 There are a lot of comparisons of blog platforms out there. I read a few when I started out and I chose Blogger, as many newbies do, for the simple reason it’s easier.

Later, we often get encouraged to move to Wordpress, either Wordpress.com or the self-hosted Wordpress software. 

But I am sticking with Blogger, at least for the time being, and here’s why:
  • Blogger is still easier. Self-hosting would require me to learn more technical shtuff (technical term). I’ve already learned more shtuff than I care to, at great personal pain to my brain. I like the fact using my blog is easy and straight-forward and requires very little shtuff. My website is largely managed by my Dad,and requires loads of shtuff, and I certainly don’t want to pester him every time I need a blog uploaded. Unless you can show me the harder option reaps me more benefits, hard is, well, a hard sell;
  • I haven’t seen a lot of Wordpress layouts I like. Yes, OK, this comes down to the customisation of each user, but I do like my Blogger layout. So why would I put in a lot of extra work for no gain? I hear a lot that Blogger looks less professional, but since the introduction of the new interface, Blogger is so customisable I don’t think this is true. With very little shtuff (and maybe a bit more in the way of creative juice), you can build a blog that looks fantastic. Sure, if you’re a professional blogger, this may be a different kettle of fish, but I’m not.
  • If you’re concerned about having blogspot.com or Wordpress.com on your blog, you can redirect your Blogger blog to your own domain name. The ease of using Blogger with the appearance of a self-hosted blog! I am halfway through this process. I did ask my webmaster (aka Dad) to set up the subdomains  but I forget what they were and must now ask Dad… Hey, I have a lot on my plate, OK? Don’t judge.
  • Yes Blogger has known comment problems but you can fix this using Disqus (see here Discuss With A Q). I believe everyone should use Disqus anyway, regardless of what blog service they use, and I know plenty of people with self-hosted Wordpress blogs who do.
  • Blogger now allows me to seamlessly integrate my blog with my website, so there is a menu across the top that links to all the pages of my site, and my site links to both blogs. Unless you look at the URL, you may not even know the blog isn’t on the website. And I bet a bunch of you didn’t notice… Sure, my blog layout is not identical to my website, but I’ve chosen complementing themes and colours to create the same mood if not precisely the same look and feel.
So those are my reasons. A few have attempted to convert me to Wordpress, but so far their arguments haven’t made a lot of progress! They’ll need to keep at it before they convert me. 

What do you think? Do you use Blogger or Wordpress? Why, and what do you like or dislike about the platform you use?


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39 comments:

Kate O'Mara said...

I used both & like Blogger. :)
Kate
Following/Visit http://whenkateblogs.blogspot.com/

Amberr Meadows said...

I love Wordpress, but you have a damn nice blogger blog going on. The fact that it is integrated with the awesome website Webmaster Dad (sounds like a DJ, kinda) hooked up for you. Do what you're comfortable with. We know you're a writer much more so than a blogger.

Jack said...

I've compared both platforms and I find Blogger more user-friendly. Although I still have to figure out how my domain name can hook up to my site! :)

Oh, and congratulations for entering the blog competition! Good luck!

Solitary Mama said...

I've always been with WP but had a client on Blogger. IMO Blogger was more difficult but I think that's only because of whatever you become familiar with. Had I started with Blogger it may be different. I have also recently started using Disqus and so far I like it a lot more than all of the other commenting systems I've used (I've tried a lot).

Voted for you, btw. Good luck!

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Thanks for the vote! Blogger is more or less point and click - or is now. It does have a relatively new interface, so it may not always have been that way. But it is true that often changing is harder than learning a system (any system) the first time. This is why Nokia had so much brand loyalty - until the iPhone anyway.

I'm notoriously disloyal though. I've never had the same brand of phone two contracts running.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Yeah I can't purport to be an expert on that one, I've only gone halfway through the process. I'll let you know how it works out for me LOL

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Thanks Amberr. I'll let Dad know about his new DJ status LOL.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

What did you like most about Blogger?

SM Johnson said...

I have used both, and I absolutely looooove how I was able to customize Blogger, so I stick with that. WordPress is okay, but truth? Sometimes when I get to WordPress, I can't even find a place to log in. Makes me crazy.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

That seems to be a common theme with more and more sites these days. The ones you can't logout of really drive me crazy!

Jolie du pre said...

I've used both. I'm not a Wordpress fan. I prefer to blog with Blogger, because Blogger is cheaper and easier. I like the $10 a year cost that comes with having my own domain. That's a lot cheaper than Wordpress. Wordpress can get complicated, although I can always figure it out. Blogger is NEVER complicated. However, if you're an erotica writer, Blogger can be a pain-in-the-butt. You can find yourself with a warning page added to your blog that you don't want.

WordPress Designer said...

nice blog.

Jeri Walker-Bickett said...

I started out on Blogger and I liked how it was linked to my Google account and was pretty user-friendly. Since I wanted to learn more about technical "shtuff" I switched and started a WordPress.org blog in November. It came with a pretty high learning curve, but I have learned a lot. I'm not sure if the switch made much difference in my blog traffic, but everyone says WordPress is best for SEO purposes. Hopefully I will continue to see my blog traffic pick-up little by little.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Very true for people who write erotica or other sensitive content. For specific issues like that, self-hosting becomes a betetr argument.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Thank you

Ciara Ballintyne said...

It's interesting, I've read Blogger is better for SEO because it's Google.

When I start to read conflicting opinions like that I begin to wonder if anyone really has a clue.

☠CPirateTV☠ said...

Well Ciara and Jeri I actually started out the other way around with a full blown hosted website, but was an early adopter of Blogger before Google picked it up (anyone remember that blogger was a separate company?). I then migrated to hosting on Word Press. org after I started noticing that Net Objects Fusion was becomming a chore keeping me from producing art. All the eyes now are on twitter and facebook and Google+. No one really wants to leave there to visit a website.

The creators of these Word Press sites are suffering from what I call P.S.S. (Play Station Syndrome) where they spend an exorbitant amount of time playing with the coding features of WordPress and hardly anytime writing the blog or interfacing with their readership. That's when it calls for a simple B.I.L.I. (Blogger It and Leave It).

With this at least if your blog is interesting enough people will read it and you more time to write more instead of one blog a week with the rest of the time playing with Word Press. Jeez if your Avante-Garde enough you'll realize you can video blog and embed a YouTube blog video right into your BlogSpot.

I hope my interesting thoughts and comments are appreciated for what they're worth.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Thanks, I value all thoughts! I don't video blog myself, although I know it can be done, because as a writer I am here principally to showcase my writing talents, but definitely for other bloggers I agree it can be a valuable tool.

Definitely the focus of any blog needs to be on the content and not the features, because it's your content that gets the attention of the readership! This is part of the reason I steer clear of WordPress. I have no time for the coding or learning how to do it, and my time is already stretched thin getting the content done.

Evie Knight said...

I used Wordpress for 2 years and never really found a template that went with my blog. For me WP was user friendly, but I wasn't getting what I wanted from it, and hits were so low. Recently I moved to Blogger and I love it. I found a perfect template (one that goes with what I do) and the hits I get are awesome.
http://inluvwithromance.blogspot.com

Tim Miller said...

I started out with blogger but I switched to wordpress. Wordpress seemed easier for me to customize and track my traffic. And since switching I noticed my views went up considerably for some reason

Ciara Ballintyne said...

I find it fascinating that different people have completely opposite experiences. This seems to suggest to me that it very much depends on a person's precise situation and there is no one size fits all solution.

Sheenah Freitas said...

I've always used Wordpress and am super comfortable with the platform. I've seen a lot of Blogger layouts that scared me away and at the time when I started building my blog, Wordpress seemed to be the only option (maybe I just didn't research enough). But it's super versatile and it does everything I want it to do, so I'm happy. I must say though, your Blogger layout is one of the best I've seen. Very clean.

LynneinPborough said...

I started blogging on WP 4 months ago. I found it pretty easy to get going with but mine's very basic and I'm not even IT literate enough to put a pic on my profile.
Those in blogger seem to be able to link up with others easier!
I'm very loyal and likely to be with wp forever now!

Ciara Ballintyne said...

I'm notoriously disloyal when it comes to brands, and I still haven't been convinced to leave Blogger

E.B. Black said...

I doubt I'll ever leave blogger. Maybe I will ad

Ciara Ballintyne said...

I certainly haven't found a good reason to move my blog across.

Mina Lobo said...

I also haven't found a WP template that feels like "home" for my blogging. Really dig my Blogger template, though. I've used WP for my work's blog and didn't find it too difficult. What I wish Blogger would provide is a more comprehensive "how to" guide - I'm not very tech savvy and some things flummox me (like, how the heck to implement Google Analytics on my blog pages - still haven't figured that out).

Some Dark Romantic

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Yeah, you got me on the Google Analytics too....

Mariana Araujo said...

Werther it's blogger or wordpress it is still the same. as long as your post more reliable and as long as you don't scam it is still cool.

Stephanieberget said...

Thanks for the information. I started on Blogger and have been wondering whether I should change. For now, I'm not going to worry about it. Like you, my plate is full.

jdbegin5 said...

Great post, Ciara, and captures some of the same rationale I used in sticking with Blogger for the time being. I also couldn't find a Wordpress template I felt strongly about and didn't have the time or energy to recreate my blog in WP for marginal gain, if any. That could change in time, but for now I'd rather use my limited time to write rather than design. I get enough of the latter with my f/t job. Best, J.D.

Rhea Buenavista said...

Hi Ciara! I started blogging on Blogger and I shifted to Wordpress. But now I'm back on Blogger. I wrote about it here: http://rheabuenavista.blogspot.com/2012/08/back-to-blogger.html

chnlovegirls said...

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Danielle at yeahisaiditblog said...

Thank you so much for posting your reasons! I was just considering making the switch to Wordpress (again), but am intimidated by the process. I like the ease of Blogger too, but I really want to be able to use some of the cool widgets I see around the Blogosphere. (I spent all afternoon yesterday trying to install a cute share button like yours down there. V) (To no avail.)

So, just--thank you. I think I'll stick with Blogger too.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Glad to be able to help :-)

Ciara Ballintyne said...

Yes, I don't think WP is necessarily better than blogger for basic blogging, and for those of us who are time poor I think Blogger has certain appeal.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

That's interesting! You're the first I've met who switched and then switched back.

Ciara Ballintyne said...

As you know, this is a Blogger blog, and I still use cool widgets. Sometimes it takes a little more hard work to find how to do it, and some of them have required me to make changes to the hard coding of the blog rather than just use the template system, but I've managed to figure out how to do that without breaking my blog too often LOL. I've not made any changes to either blog for some time now because I'm happy with them both. If you let me know which sharing gadget it is you are interested in, I might be able to tell you how to do it.

Marco Daniel said...

+1vote for WordPress. I guess there's no reason to hesitate in making the move from Blogger to WordPress. WordPress suits perfectly for those who are getting serious about blogging and want to have a complete control over the content. I found a lot of answers here
http://www.cms2cms.com/blog/converting-blogger-to-wordpress-pros-and-cons.
Hopefully, it will prevent somebody from investing huge time and effort.

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