It seems the two major players in the blogging space are WordPress.com (not .org), which is owned by Automattic; and Blogger (owned by Google). Today, we’ll talk about the two platforms, contrast some of their features and conclude with some observations of which is best.
For the similarities:
- Both are hosted, which means you don’t have to find and purchase hosting from a third-party and learn how to install software. Your posts are automatically backed up for you
- Both are free
- Both give the author the ability to upload photos and videos
- Both allow submission of posts via email and mobile phone. I see there’s a WordPress iPhone app, didn’t find one for Blogger
- Both feature helpful videos, although WordPress has recently come out with WordPress.tv, which seems a cut above what Blogger has
- Use your Google account credentials to sign up for Blogger – one less account login to keep track of
- Choose a name (URL) for your blog and have the ability to easily change it later, or use your own domain name
- Add a gadget to your blog that connects your blog to your Picasa account to show off your photos (limited to Picasa photos (owned by Google)
- We mentioned the ability to embed videos in your blog – you can link to Google Video or YouTube
- Ability to make your blog private, i.e. by invitation only. Great feature for families with kids to keep photos and family information for friends and family only
- Ability to add others as authors or administrators. An Administrator can do everything you can do (may not want this), Authors only have the ability to write, post and edit their own writings
- Ability to embed audio (podcasts) into your blog. Also provided are instructions to get your podcast into iTunes
- Wide choice of themes and Blogger makes it easy to revise your theme to customize to your needs
- If you have a blog on another platform, you won’t be able to import it into Blogger, so if your blog is somewhere else right now, you might not want to switch
- Limited to 1GB of on-line storage, (less than WordPress), but if you have your pictures linked to Picasa, that doesn’t count against your limit
- Ability to import your blog from other platforms such as Yahoo! 360, Blogger, Type-Pad, Moveable-Type and other WordPress blogs
- Over 75 themes from which to choose. If you’re handy with CSS, you can revise your template. Some templates allow custom pictures in the headers
- WordPress has Askimet spam protector. This feature saves a lot of your time and aggravation weeding and eliminating spam
- Ability to add other editors/authors and give them more specialized permissions than Blogger allows
- Ability to make the entire blog private (you can invite up to 35 people to have viewing privileges, more with a paid upgrade)
- You get 3 GB of storage (equal to about 2,500 pictures)
- Import photos and videos – link your blog to Flickr or Photobucket
- Great widgets that are super easy to add and you don’t need to worry about knowing html, such as adding an image widget
These are the main features as I see them, feel free to leave a comment with a feature that has helped you out.
If you haven’t started a blog and are thinking about it, which should you use? I’m a WordPress user. I started out with the .com and switched over to the .org (self-hosted) about 7 months ago. Before I started bloggingl I did a little research and it seemed to me then, as it does now, that WordPress seems more suited for business or semi-business use while Blogger seems more suited for personal blogs. To me, the ‘W’ icon seems more elegant than the ‘b’ icon that Blogger uses.
With WordPress, there’s room to upgrade to the self-hosted WordPress where you’ll discover endless customization and possibilities with plug-ins, e-commerce, etc. WordPress seems to attract more developers who are writing/coding great themes and plug-ins (I’m using i-Themes for my theme). WordPress conducts popular low-cost ‘WordCamps‘ all over the world. If you’re into optimizing and tracking visitors and trends, then WordPress is the platform for you. If you’re looking for more of a personal journal or a way to share pictures and stories with far-flung family and friends, I’d go with Blogger.