One of the most common questions I receive is whether WordPress or Blogger is a better platform choice. Coming from the educational blogger world since 2012, most of us started out on Blogger. It was an easy choice and I always told my clients, “If you can send an email, you can manage a Blogger blog.” But is Blogger still the clear answer? Spoiler alert: I don’t think so. I know making the switch to WordPress can feel like a huge leap, but here’s why I think it’s the best idea.

Wordpress vs Blogger for new blogs and websites

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WordPress Benefits

  • Endless options for customizing your layout. WordPress runs on themes, which are like blueprints for a house. There are endless options here for “blog” styles or “website” styles and you’re never locked into one; change at any time. There are free themes, but I typically use and recommend paid ones that average $50-$75.
  • Lots of options for SEO, search engine optimization. I could write about SEO all day and it’s something I knew n-o-t-h-i-n-g about when I started. I wish I had because it’s much easier to set things up correctly from the start than to go back later and fix it all. {I’m looking at you, teacher-blog from 2012.} When you adjust your SEO settings, you increase traffic to your website from sites like Google.
  • Numerous plug-ins (widgets) that improve both design and performance. Blogger simply cannot compete here. Plug-ins can help you connect your newsletter subscribers, convert with opt-ins, password protected libraries for your best readers, increase social media traffic, etc. If you can think of it, there’s probably a plug-in that can do it. The majority of the plug-ins I use are FREE!
  • You truly own your website. Blogger is a free option, but it’s “owned” by Google. With the shutdown of Google+, many Bloggers were left feeling uneasy when all of their Google+ comments were deleted. If Blogger goes away someday, what will happen to all of your content that you haven’t backed up?

WordPress Limitations

  • If you’re coming from Blogger, WordPress is more difficult to learn. It isn’t nearly as “plug and play” as Blogspot. I’m pretty techy and still had to look up tutorials to find my way around initially. Fortunately, there are many great resources out there with a simple “How do I…” Google search.
  • WordPress.org is a free, open source platform. It’s the engine under the hood, so to speak. But you will still need to host your own site. This means you’ll need to buy a domain and select a hosting provider. Fortunately, this is a small expensive that costs just a few dollars per month for most users. I wrote an easy-to-follow tutorial on how to use Bluehost for this. I also offer this service with my new website installs so that you receive a turnkey site without any of the work.
  • Custom website designs tend to be more expensive on WordPress than Blogger. It takes more time to set these sites up because there are more “bells and whistles” so to speak.

So What About Blogger?

  • If you’re on a budget, Blogger is still a good free option.
  • Blogger is much easier to set up for beginners. If you can email, you can blog on Blogspot and if you don’t want a fancy design, you can most likely set it up yourself.
  • There are paid themes for Blogger that can give you a responsive, mobile-friendly design. These are more complicated to install, so you may need to hire a designer to help. After that it’s pretty much turnkey though.
  • Even with paid themes, you have far fewer options to truly customize your website. There just aren’t as many integrations like I mentioned above for WordPress.
  • You may have reduced SEO because you have less control over adjusting and checking your settings.

My Final Answer

If my best friend was starting a new site, I’d hook that girl up with WordPress. It’s much easier to do things right from the start than to go back later and make adjustments.

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