Southern Belle in Training

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle Blog || Est. 2012 || Charlottesville, VA

October 23, 2020

Blogging FAQ: Why I Still Use Blogger Instead of Wordpress.

      Welcome back to Blogging FAQ! Today's blog post is all about why I love using Blogger, which is the Google-owned platform that I have always run this blog on. Hopefully this might be helpful to any of you who are considering starting a blog and looking at different platforms right now!

    {Photo originally from this post}

     I started Southern Belle in Training in 2012, but I had actually first started blogging on a different blog about a year and a half prior, when I was in high school. My friend Katie is my oldest friendship- we have been friends since we were seven and eight. She had a blog when we were in high school that was mostly focused on her creative writing projects, but I loved reading her posts, and I thought blogging seemed like such a fun hobby.

     The first half of my junior year of high school was really rough for me on a personal level, as I struggled with severe anxiety and depression. Things were finally getting a little better for me in the second half of junior year, and inspired by my friend Katie I decided to take my first plunge into blogging. Katie was using Blogger at the time, and I didn't know about Wordpress or any other blogging platforms, so I made a Blogger account as well and started using it. My first blog was called... wait for it... Confessions of a Maine Teenager. 😂 I know, I know, what a name haha! (Don't try to look for it, I made that website private a long time ago.) My first blog itself wasn't very good at all and my writing was all over the place and it was super inconsistent with when I'd share new posts, but dipping my toes into blogging in high school is what made me fall in love with it. I stopped posting on that blog around the time that I graduated high school, but I missed blogging so much that I decided to start SBIT once I went to college! 

     Because I'd enjoyed using Blogger with my first blog, it was a no-brainer to me to use it for SBIT as well. Back when I started blogging in 2012, Blogger was very much still in its prime. Most of the "big bloggers" that are full-time today were using Blogger back then when they started as well. I created SBIT initially on Blogger, and have still had such a positive experience that I haven't been drawn yet to switch to WordPress. 

    I'm a big fan of a pros and cons list, so I thought I'd make one to highlight my observations on Blogger. No, it's not a perfect platform and there are some cons... but I personally think the pros definitely outweigh the cons, which is why I've remained using it for so long. I'm not saying that I'll never move my blog to WordPress (or another platform like Squarespace), but I did want to share the reasons I've been content with Blogger for so long!

3 Pros to Using Blogger for Your Blog:

1) User friendly and easy to design: First and foremost, Blogger is incredibly user friendly, even if you aren't tech savvy! Since Blogger is owned by Google, all you need is a Gmail account to sign up. It's easy to figure out how to draft a new post, add images and labels, and also fairly easy to design your website and upload custom templates. Since blogging is my side hustle and not my day job, I prefer to keep the platform I blog on as easy and low-maintenance as possible. Although I haven't used WordPress for SBIT, I have gotten experience with it over the past few years from my day jobs. For every radio job that I've had, the websites have been WordPress hosted. I have found all of my work websites and work blog pages to be a bit harder to navigate and confusing at times. 

2) Cost effective: You get a lot more bang for your buck each month by using Blogger! The costs I pay to keep SBIT up and running are so much less than bloggers that use WordPress. Annually, I pay GoDaddy once a year to keep the domain Southern Belle in Training. That's it- that's my only technical "required" cost! I have also paid various design companies when I've purchased my templates, but Blogger templates are generally a fraction of the cost of WordPress ones. With WordPress, not only are templates a lot more expensive, but you also have to pay monthly for your web hosting (since you own the space on the internet that is storing your content- with Blogger Google owns it so that's covered). 

3) Zero hosting issues: Since WordPress blogs are self-hosted, as I mentioned in the previous point there are costs involved with that.  The cheaper the web hosting, the less web traffic that a website can handle at once. If a lot of people are on your blog at once, it can crash if it gets overwhelmed (unless you upgrade your hosting plan). Google is pretty much the biggest website in the world, and since they own the hosting on Blogger blogs that means they can easily handle a large surge in website traffic, should that ever happen! I can't tell you how many times in blogging Facebook groups I see people posting about their WordPress blog being down for hosting traffic issues or website maintenance. I've had problems with accessing my website a grand total of once in eight years! (One time a few years ago Google was doing some maintenance on Blogger and I struggled to get in for about a day, but that's literally it!)

3 Cons to Using Blogger for Your Blog:

1) You don't own your content: This is probably the biggest con, although with that said it's not something I worry about often. As I mentioned before, Wordpress blogs are self-hosted. When you pay for hosting of your content online, you own it outright. Blogger blogs are hosted for free by Google which means Google "technically" owns your content. That means that God forbid Google ever shut Blogger down, your content could all be lost forever. But with that said- I see the chances of Google shutting Blogger down as being extremely slim! This is something I try to keep tabs on every year or so, and each year I see information showing that Blogger is still profitable for Google and they seem to enjoy having it. In fact, this year Blogger's interface underwent a major upgrade, which I see as a good sign for Google still investing in their product. 

2) SEO is limited: Wordpress definitely has the upper hand for search engine optimization, or SEO. This is what helps content from blogs rank highly for certain search keywords on Google or other search engines. There are a lot of plugins and things you can do on Wordpress to help SEO that Blogger doesn't have. 

3) Less customizable on some features: Overall, Blogger blogs are fairly customizable with the capability to upload unique templates and change layouts. But Wordpress blogs definitely have the upper hand with customization options. There are some website designs and features like widgets that aren't able to work with Blogger coding, and probably won't ever be. I'm very content with the way my own blog looks on here, and I'm usually able to make minor changes myself. But if you want something truly customizable in every sense, Wordpress has the upper hand. 


    Can I say I'll never switch to Wordpress? Nope! It is something I've considered doing over the years, and I'm sure I'll continue to consider it and maybe even make the switch someday soon. (A lot of web designers offer packages to transfer your Blogger blog to Wordpress and not lose any content in the transfer.) But for over eight years I've been very happy with Blogger, and I don't see that changing soon.

     A lot of bloggers that used to use Blogger have switched to Wordpress in the last year or two, but there's some of us still using it! The most notable to me is probably Krista of Covering the Bases- she blogs full-time and still uses Blogger. My friends Amy and Cara still use it as well, and there's a few others I can think of too.


      God Bless,

     
      xoxo Annaliese 





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4 comments

  1. Great post. I've used blogger for a long time and find it very user friendly as well. It's more of a hobby for me than anything else so it's perfect for my needs.
    Ellibelle's Corner

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  2. Couldn't agree more! I use Blogger and love it. Although, I consider blogging a hobby, and maybe if I did it professionally I'd feel differently. I think you nailed all the pros and cons!

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  3. I loved hearing your perspective. I started on wordpress.com in college around 2012?, LOL my first blog was Fashion Is An Art Your Wear for a class project.

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  4. I agree I love blogger and that is one thing I am stubborn about no matter how much people say I should switch to Wordpress. I will stick to blogger as my main blogging platform. I love your blog and I am glad I find a lot of bloggers who share my views about blogger.

    ReplyDelete

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If you have a question in regards to one of my posts, or just want to say hi, the best way to get ahold of me is by e-mailing me directly at: rainbowflash94@yahoo.com. I am better about responding to e-mails than blog comments sometimes!
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