Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to mark the passing of Blogger.com The free blogging platform that I have been using ever since I woke up decades ago and thought ‘Hey this blogging thing looks like a laugh, how hard could it be?’ For so long it has served so many with blogs ranging from seaside adventures to sex dolls and every weight loss, Indian dental plan, food creation content corner and picture dump you could throw at its way, but now-
Actually *90’s hip hop record scratch* Blogger.com isn’t actually dead (cue Monty Python’s Holy Grail ‘He says he’s not dead!). More I’m parting ways with it after so many years, from free to paid hosting, from a few options to a veritable ocean of plug ins and endless customisation. My old stuff will still be where it was until the world falls over (or Google buries the idea) but Yes I’ve jumped ship from Blogger to WordPress for quite a few logical reasons.
WHY YOU SHOULD THINK OF MAKING THE SWITCH FROM FREE BLOGGER.COM TO A PAID HOSTING BLOG
-THE NEW KID ON THE BLOCK EVENTUALLY BECAME THE OLD GRUMPY MAN WHO YELLS AT KIDS TO GET OFF THEIR LAWNS (WHILE MUMBLING ‘BACK IN MY DAY’ TO ITSELF CONSTANTLY.)
I started off with a bang back in 2012 and a few ideas rocketed things off into the stratosphere. I made a little coin off the back of it, I was happy. But then things started to change and the rocket started running a bit rough over the next years now matter what I did or how much I wrote and by January 2017, it flat out ran out of fuel and just spluttered about until now. Things didn’t turn up through search engines nearly as quickly as they once did and the early success dropped off significantly as Google decided it had far more exciting toys to play with instead. In the ultimate tale of the tape if I had shares or cryptocurrency that looked like this, I probably would have sold it off with a heavy heart years ago.
As another paid hosting blog quite smartly pointed out ‘When was the last time anyone recommended you anything with .blogspot.com in the title?’
I can’t recall a time of that every happening come to think of it.
Once upon a time they ranked well but unless you have a super popular post or two on it, they don’t nowadays. I don’t think Blogger.com was ever king but in 2022 at the time of writing it seems it hasn’t been invited to a popular Kingdom search party in quite some time. If anything it’s potentially banging on the metal gate outside wondering why it sounds like so much fun is happening somewhere else.
-IT’S COST ME THE EQUIVALENT OF A MEAL OUT WITH A COUPLE OF BEERS FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR
In the view of saving money and improving what I can around my life (that’s the aim of this blog, planning on improvements constantly) I did shop around, looking at everything from overseas servers to SEO friendly WordPress themes. I looked up Black Friday specials, read reviews, trawled Reddit and consulted some oracles (actually I didn’t do that last bit) but in the end when I went back to my original hosting (a shout out to Uptime Webhosting here in Australia that look after my second hand car blog Drive Another Day) I found out that it was just as affordable to stick with them for this new project. It took a form or two and a couple of clicks but the next thing you know, WordPress was off and installing itself while I was penning this into a Word document while I waited.
All up I’ve spent $50 to set it up and that was on the hosting and domain name alone. I’m sure I’ll be playing around with themes until I find one that sticks so that might add to the cost (although I’ve done okay with free themes in the past) but that’s still incredibly affordable for a blog project considering I could easily spend that on a steak and two schooner dinner at quiz night at the Bended Elbow in town without a thought.
Although that steak idea does sound like a winner too..
-I PREFER PLUG INS TO PROGRAMMING
I didn’t study web building back in high school because back then it simply wasn’t a thing. No I wasted time in textiles burning anything with cheese and home economics breaking steel needles by the box load.
Or was that the other way around?
My point here is, like my cars I like my parts to be plug and play and come in a variety of options. Plugins for search engine optimisation? WordPress has plenty, Blogger.com not so much. Actually no, that’s not an option Blogger actually gives you. Meta tags? Again there’s plenty of ready to plug and play options here. With Blogger.com I had to find some code to insert myself and then strangely the place went a little sideways according to the site health report. It’s still there thankfully, it just acted like a car with an engine swap that hadn’t had all the bugs ironed out of it yet (I will get around to fixing it..eventually).
Customisation and additions are so much easier with a hosted WordPress and as long as they’ve been tested by the programmer, they’re going to work out of the box. (And if they don’t, I’ve become pretty savvy with Google by now to work out how to uninstall them from the back end.)
I don’t have time to muck around with code, it’s not my forte. Sorry editing script in Blogger.com. Give me plug and play all the way.
-FINALLY I’M MUCH MORE INVESTED WHEN THERE’S SKIN IN THE GAME (OR IN THIS CASE MONEY)
Don’t get me wrong, I love my free stuff as much as the next bloke trawling the Freebies section of Gumtree (and for the record I’m currently searching for a free BBQ not rusted to high hell). But whoever pointed this out to me a few weeks ago (look it’s been a busy few weeks, you’ll forgive me if I forget a name or in this case a website or two..) was 100% correct, you care for things a lot more when you’ve invested in it compared to the things you get for free.
Think of the last time you put a bet on anything – your interest in the game, sporting event, race or two flies crawling up a wall multiplies dramatically on the outcome doesn’t it? Of course it does because it has a chance of making you even more money. If you bet nothing then the outcome isn’t nearly as interesting is it?
Yes it’s only a crisp Australian fifty dollar note we’re talking here and effectively less than two hours work for what I make in a day in my day job but it’s still the want of making every dollar count. Now that I’ve spent the money, I want to become a multi-millionaire because of it. Really, is that too much to ask?
(Actually no need to answer that one.)
SO IN SHORT
Blogger.com was and still is a great place to start. However if you want ranking, options and more toys to play with in the rumpus room, switch to WordPress and some paid hosting. For a small time (currently) operation like this it doesn’t cost much to run at all and all going well, it’ll be a far more enjoyable blogging experience.