WordPress vs. Blogger – How To Choose Which Is Best For You
Most people would think a fight between WordPress and Blogger is just plain unfair… But you might be surprised at just how close it is. In fact, what if I told you that Blogger actually manages to steal a couple of rounds? Stick around to see how the fight goes down.
While pretty much anybody can set up a website or blog in 2019, it does come with its challenges.
One of the most challenging aspects usually occurs before you write or publish a single word…
I’m talking about choosing which platform to use.
Although there are many fantastic and unique blogging options out there… all with their own advantages (Gator, Tumblr, Squarespace, Medium, Ghost, etc.).
Today we’re pegging two of the heavyweights of the blogosphere against each other.
WordPress(.org) Vs. Blogger
The idea being that after these two blogging heavyweights go head to head, you’ll hopefully have a better sense of which platform is the best choice for you.
Now to start with, I’m going to assume most of you are familiar with WordPress, but for those who haven’t been introduced to Blogger (or had no idea it still existed!)…
Blogger is a platform owned by Google that lets anyone start their own blog or website for free in a couple of clicks.
The good thing about Blogger’s association with Google is that your website or blog is hosted by the conglomerate and everything is taken care of for you.
However, as you’ll soon find out, as good as this association may be, it does come with its drawbacks.
In any case, if you’ve finished listening to the referee’s instructions…touch gloves, and…
Round 1: Cost To Set Up
Okay, this first round might be a tad unfair, but you did this to yourself WP…
Blogger has the upper hand clearly because it’s a completely free platform. There is an option to connect your own domain (domains can cost around $10), but it’s entirely up to you.
The only downside is if you don’t register your own domain, your default URL will always be: “http://(websitename).blogspot.com/”
But as mentioned, the option for a custom domain name is there if you want it.
As for WordPress, although the software itself is free to use there are some costs involved.
You’ll need to set your site up with a domain name, which as mentioned could cost you around $10. And you’ll also need hosting which can cost anywhere from $50 – $500+ per year.
As well as this, although they aren’t always needed, premium WordPress plugins and themes also come at a cost.
But if you’re just starting out the free themes and plugins available will usually be enough.
Of course, what you’re willing to spend will depend on the type of blog or website you’re setting up.
With all that said, I’m going to have to declare the winner of round 1…
Winner Of Round 1: Blogger!
Round 2: Managing Your Website and Publishing Content
Once you’ve got your blog set up, it’s time to have a look around and start posting.
For this round, we’ll look at the functionality of each platform and how easy it is to publish a simple page and adjust a few settings.
Starting with Blogger:
Although visitors only ever get to see the front end of your website, the real action happens behind the curtain.
It all starts with the dashboard:
You’ll also notice a number of different menu items which will enable you to customize your blog or website:
If you head to the settings section, you can change the title and description of your blog:
You can also play around with other settings such as changing the URL, as well as adding blog authors and adjusting the privacy settings of your blog (below).
It’s also simple to publish pages and posts on your website. This could be evergreen pages like an about page or a contact page.
On that note, let’s see how easy it is to whip up a simple “about page.”
Start by clicking pages on the sidebar menu. Next click “new page” to create your page.
The Blogger interface is much what you’d expect from this kind of platform. Simply enter your content using the WYSIWYG editor.
You can also see a preview your page before you publish it, which gives you an idea of how the page is going to look when it goes live.
Once you’re ready click publish and your page will be out there in all its glory.
When it comes to publishing posts, it’s pretty much the same process. You can also manage your pages and posts from your dashboard:
Okay now let’s see how WordPress stacks up…
Once you’ve installed WordPress you’ll be greeted with the following dashboard, where you can manage your website and create content.
Creating posts and pages in WordPress is similar to the way it’s done in Blogger, the big difference being there are a lot more settings and options available to you.
For example, in Blogger you only have the option of labeling your posts… whereas WordPress lets you add tags and categories to your posts so they can be grouped into appropriate sections and digested by the right audience.
When it comes to the actual editor, you’ll find that the layouts and functionality of these to be relatively similar.
However, WordPress recently introduced the new Gutenberg editor. Although there are options to switch back to the classic style of editing.
Like Blogger, you can create a draft post, preview it, and then hit publish when it’s ready to go live.
Changes to the title and tagline of your site also happens in the settings like it does in Blogger. However, WordPress does offer some additional settings.
For instance, WordPress allows you to grant users different levels of access to your website.
So you might create an account which only allows a user to create new posts, as opposed to making changes to how the site looks and operates.
Okay, I think this round we have a clear winner…
Winner Of Round 2: WordPress!
Round 3: Security
Because Blogger was bought by Google back in 2003 your website is hosted on Google and covered by their security blanket.
This essentially means you don’t have to worry about managing server resources, creating backups, and your blog’s security.
And although Google isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, the company does have a history of axing underperforming platforms (ahem Google+).
Of course, when it comes to WordPress YOU are solely responsible for the security of your website.
There are plenty of great WordPress plugins for security and backing up…
But if the user fails to stay on top of things and continue to update, what’s the point?
Hmmm, this is a hard round to call…
But I’m going to have to give it to:
Winner Of Round 3: Blogger!
That could have gone either way, but I gave it to Blogger – mainly because big brother Google was involved…
Round 4: Customization
Now it’s WordPress’ turn to have an unfair advantage… you did this to yourself, Blogger.
Because when it comes to customization and variety of options, WordPress certainly floors Blogger.
Not only this, things that are relatively simple in WordPress somehow become frustratingly complicated in Blogger.
For example, if you’re looking to create a website with multiple pages and a separate blog section, it’s way easier to do on WordPress.
But WordPress really stamps its authority when it comes to themes and plugins.
Although Blogger’s theme selection is decent (and free) and you can access some third party templates if needed…
It’s nothing compared to the THOUSANDS of designs and themes you can choose from with WordPress.
You also have an endless selection of free and premium themes which can be added to your site to give it a makeover and more functionality.
And then you have over 50,000 plugins to choose from… all with their own unique ways to help your website or blog perform at its peak.
You’ll find it all in the WordPress plugin directory, as well as in off-site market places like CodeCanyon.
No surprises this round…
Winner Of Round 4: WordPress!
It’s 2-2 going into the final round!
Who’s going to take it out?
Let’s find out:
Round 5: Support And Community
When it comes to the amount of support available to users Blogger appears to be much more limited.
You do have access to documentation and a blog forum. However, in terms of direct support, it’s certainly not extensive.
WordPress, on the other hand, has a more active support network.
Like Blogger, there’s plenty of documentation and community forums … as well as an internet relay chat (IRC) chat room, where you can seek help from experienced WordPress experts.
In terms of a user community, again and unfortunately, Blogger cannot compete with WordPress.
In fact, Blogger’s community doesn’t extend much further than its help forums and documentation…
Whereas the WordPress community is always active with WordCamp events and meetups constantly being held around the world.
There are also huge amounts of blogs, articles, tutorials and new developments coming out of the WordPress community everyday.
On that note, I think we know who takes this round, and the fight…
Winner Of Round 5: WordPress!
Was that closer than you were expecting?
Blogger put up a good fight, but it was always facing an uphill battle.
Having said that, just because WordPress won this particular fight, it’s not to say that Blogger doesn’t have its place.
Which Platform Should You Choose?
If you just want a basic blog that serves its purpose, and you’re not worried about extensive features, plugins, or a cutting edge design – Blogger could be the solution for you.
It’s also free and comes with no start-up costs.
On the other hand, if a blog is the first step on your way to conquering the world, then maybe WordPress is the one for you.
In order to grow your website or blog, you’re going to need access to the extra plugins and themes WordPress has on offer.
This is especially relevant if your blog or website is going to be used as part of a business venture.
Yes, it may set you back a bit of cash.
Yes, it requires a little more effort to set up and there is a learning curve.
But the sheer amount of customization and flexibility available to you is comprehensive and will enable you to create an amazing statement piece.
In our opinion, WordPress scores the TKO.
We’ll leave it up to you to decide who wins in your world.