Blogging, Web Applications

WordPress versus Blogger

Blogger may be the original but even after a short period using WordPress I am starting to feel it is far from the best. The first thing to impress was that WordPress actually seems to generate decent HTML rather than Blogger’s colossal fudge of a single paragraph with line breaks in. This extends to the editor which I think is far easier to use than Blogger’s equivalent purely because it is closely linked to valid HTML which allows things like the Path bar to tell you exactly where you are from a syntax point of view and allowing to avoid formatting issues due to tag soup.

WordPress’s idea of using categories to divide a single blog rather than Blogger’s multiple blogs per account is a less clearcut idea. On the one hand it is really convenient because the tags serve multiple purposes as they help categorise but they also help publicise your posts. On the other hand I would like some threads to actually exist in a separate blog with different templates and settings (say) but which I could still control through the same dashboard.

One feature that really surprised me was that WordPress offers far better searching information both about people visiting your blog and which posts were popular. This is really Google’s bread and butter but Analytics is way overkill for just running a blog.

Another thing that surprised me is that far more people visit and read my WordPress blog than my blogspot ones. Checking with a few searches seemed to tell me why. The Categories first of all drive a certain amount of traffic but the real answer is that Google’s PageRank does not seem to do all that well with blogs at the moment. If you look at most of the blogging search sites then they tend to work on the basis of returning everything about the keywords you’re using, matching them as closely as possible rather than trying to make a judgement about how popular they are.

With the Blogspot searches going off how many links there are to a post it skews the searches to the more popular blogs or listings and not those that match your interest most closely. Until someone introduces a Digg style way of rating blog posts popularity in terms of linking does not seem a good judge of whether the posting is relevant or not. If I want to search for posts on say Tube station names then I want to see posts actually about names before, say, a popular blog about Tube Stations in general.

Anyway the upshot is that WordPress is currently my fave of the blogging tools and has a distinct edge on its rivals in all areas not just a couple. Google really needs to give Blogger a kick up the arse because as a company it is way behind the standard the other Google purchases are at.


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