Blogger vs WordPress is an age-old comparison. If you’re about to start a blog, you’ve probably heard people talk about both Blogger and WordPress and have some questions. Like, what is the difference between WordPress and Blogger? And which blogging platform is best for you?
Starting a blog is easier than ever before. However, if you’re new to blogging, it’s only natural that you ask yourself these questions. Choosing a blogging platform is one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make in the beginning. So when it comes to Blogger vs WordPress, it’s good to know the pros and cons of each.
I’ve been blogging on both platforms, so this comparison is based on both facts and my own personal experience.
Why do you want to start a blog?
Before doing a full WordPress vs Blogger comparison and looking at the pros and cons of each platform, I think it’s important to understand what you want to accomplish with your blog. So here are a couple of questions you should be asking yourself:
- Do you want to start a simple hobby blog or do you want to make money with your blog? Blogger is okay if all you want is to write down your thoughts for your family and friends to read. However, if you’d like to monetize your blog (now or in the future), WordPress has all the features you need to grow your blog into a business.
- Do you want to build a brand (or personal brand)? Blogger is very limited when it comes to design and functionality, so building a brand on Blogger is almost impossible. In this case, WordPress is definitely your best bet.
Blogger vs WordPress smackdown
Here I put together a list of pros and cons that will hopefully answer all your questions.
In order to avoid any confusion, I want to point out that this comparison is between the self-hosted WordPress.org and Blogger, not WordPress.com vs Blogger.
Also, keep in mind that Blogger and Blogspot are one and the same.
|Blogger (aka Blogspot)||WordPress|
|Your content is hosted on their servers and they can do whatever they want with it.||You have full control over your blog and its content.|
|The URL of your blog will end in blogspot.com. You can purchase a custom domain for approx. $10 a year.||You’ll get a custom domain right away.|
|Easy to learn and use if you’re building a simple blog.||WordPress is a professional platform, which means it has a bit of a learning curve, but it’s a skill well worth learning.|
|There aren’t many tutorials to help you improve and grow your blog.||You can find tutorials and courses for anything and everything you need help with. The WordPress community is incredibly active and generous.|
|Very limited customization, with only a few templates available. Making changes requires HTML and CSS knowledge and messing up things I way too easy.||There are thousands of both free and paid WordPress themes available. Whatever your niche and needs, you are guaranteed to find a theme that’s right for you.|
|Very limited support on Blogger’s side. You won’t find much information that goes into the gory details online either.||There’s a very active community surrounding WordPress. Each theme and plugin has its own support forum. There are tons of blogs and even specialist companies that offer both free and premium support. Facebook groups are also helpful.|
|Blogger doesn’t offer any help with SEO. On top of that, a poorly coded theme can hurt your SEO without you even knowing it.||There are many free and paid SEO plugins that you can install to increase your chances of being found in Google.|
|You cannot personalize your link structure, which means the URL of your blog posts will always include the date when a post was first published.||You can personalize your link structure.|
|Comment moderation is lacking entirely. Replying requires extra steps.||There are many powerful plugins that automatically clean up spam comments for you.|
|Brands don’t always take Blogger blogs seriously, so it’s not always easy to monetize your blog.||WordPress blogs are considered professional. There are no limits and you can monetize your blog any way you want.|
|Free.||WordPress as a blogging platform is free. However, in order to use it, you need a web host.|
I hope this Blogger vs WordPress comparison will help you avoid starting on the wrong blogging platform, which is one of the most common mistakes newbie bloggers make.
Following, let’s have a closer look at all the advantages and disadvantages of both Blogger and WordPress have.
Custom domain name
If you are even a tiny bit serious about blogging and you want to have a voice on the web, you’ll want to pick a custom domain. Both Blogger and WordPress give you this option.
- Once you’ve created your blogspot.com blog, simply go to ‘Settings’. Under ‘Publishing’ you have the option to add a custom domain. Blogger will handle this for you and the domain only costs around $10 per year.
- You have the option to choose WhoIs Directory private registration to protect your information (like your name and address) from unwanted eyes.
- I recommend you purchase your domain together with your hosting plan so you won’t have to waste your time changing nameservers later on. FYI, Bluehost, the web hosting company I use and recommend, gives you a FREE domain when you purchase the hosting through them. It’s super easy and I describe the whole process in great detail in my tutorial on how to start a blog.
- Domain private registration can be purchased with your domain.
Just like people like in houses, blogs live on servers. Servers can be rented from web hosting companies.
- Free blog hosting
- You will be sharing the server and its resources with many other blogs and that’s that. As your website grows, the only way to move to a dedicated server is by changing to a different blogging platform, like WordPress, which can be complicated, time-consuming and risky (you could be losing some of your content and the formatting of your posts will most likely suffer).
- Blogger’s free hosting account has certain limitations. For example, the homepage has a size limit and if your posts are image-heavy, the number of posts to display on the homepage will always be overruled by the page size limit. This is a bummer if you want to showcase several images per post.
- Blogger comes with 1 Gb free image storage space.
- Although WordPress.com offers free blog hosting, the limitations are really impairing (like they won’t allow you to put ads so you won’t be able to make money with your blog). That’s why in this article, I’m only talking about the self-hosted WordPress.org.
- First of all, you’ll need to find a web hosting company. I wholeheartedly recommend Bluehost for nearly everyone and for new bloggers above all.
- Setting up an account with Bluehost is not only incredibly easy but it’s cheaper than coffee as well. Bluehost is a hosting company recommended by WordPress and it only costs $2.95/month. As mentioned before, they even give you a free domain name with your plan! If you need further guidance, here I wrote a step-by-step guide on how to start a blog with Bluehost (but you can use it to start any type of blog, really).
- Blogger is probably the easiest to use blogging platform out there. It’s intuitive, self-explanatory and you can have a blog up and running in a matter of minutes.
- Blogger hasn’t received much love from Google in the past 5 years or so, but if you want to make money with display ads, it’s quite nicely integrated with AdSense (a Google product).
- The Blogger dashboard is easy to use, with only a few options, so it won’t overwhelm you.
- WordPress is open-source software, which means there are many people all over the world working on it and improving it all the time
- It’s periodically updated and there are regular security and maintenance releases.
- Although the WordPress dashboard is more complex and can be intimidating at first, you’ll get used to it pretty fast.
- The new Gutenberg editor is super intuitive and beginner-friendly. This means you can create content-rich blog posts (like the table above) without ever touching a line of code.
Customisation & functionality
- When it comes to customization, there’s only this much you can do in Blogger. You have to be prepared to make compromises and get used to the idea that things won’t always look the way you want. If you want your blog to look similar to some of your favorite blogs, my best advice is to start learning and get comfortable with HTML and CSS (or opt for WordPress).
- In the layout section, you’ll find drag and drop containers where you can place your gadgets.
- You can edit all the code of your template in one place. In your dashboard, go to Template >> Edit HTML. Only use this if you know what you’re doing.
- When it comes to customization, the sky is the limit.
- Plugins are little add-ons that expand the functionality of your blog and there’s a plugin for everything! Seriously, there are tens of thousands of plugins available in the WordPress repository, and new ones are being added every day.
- You can easily expand the functionality of your blog with the help of freemium page builder plugins (I like Elementor best).
- The source code of your WordPress blog is divided into multiple files. If you are a newbie, finding what you are looking for can be quite a chore.
- By default, Blogger has a very limited set of free templates. You can customize them, but you won’t get very far unless you are a code geek.
- You can find more templates with a quick Google search. They are not official Blogger templates, hence, it’s good to use them with caution and back up your blog before uploading them because they can break your site. Many of them have been adapted from WordPress themes and the coding might have some shortcomings, which can hurt your SEO.
- There is an incredible number of both free and premium WordPress themes available and they can be installed directly from your WordPress dashboard.
- My absolute favorite WordPress theme is Divi by Elegant Themes. It’s an incredibly flexible theme that can become anything you want and can be easily adapted to any blogging niches. The cherry on the cake is that the Elegant Themes membership gives you access to 80+ professional-looking themes for the price of one.
- Another great option is StudioPress. Their themes are well coded, good looking, SEO friendly, light and fast. They have a nice selection of themes suitable for all kinds of niches.
- You can turn on and off the mobile version of your blog and choose between various mobile templates in Blogger’s dashboard
- Blogger controls this behind the scenes. The mobile version means optimized images, and a simplified version of the blog with no sidebars, footers, or custom header. It won’t help you in your brand-building efforts but it offers a clean user experience
- In WordPress, a responsive blog equals a responsive theme, which means you have to pay attention to these details before going through all the hustle of installing and personalizing your theme.
- The good news is that most themes nowadays, especially premium ones, are responsive.
- Apart from some online documentation, there isn’t much support on Blogger’s side.
- You’ll have to turn to Google search for answers, which might or might not be there.
- WordPress has its own very helpful, very active support forum. My other go-to forum is Stack Overflow. There are so many WordPress developers and users out there, it’s unlikely you won’t find help.
- Facebook groups can also be of help.
- Your own hosting company might be able to help you with certain issues.
- If everything else fails, try premium support.
- AdSense is a Google product, hence, it’s part of the Blogger dashboard and easy to use.
- You can place sponsored content, banners ads, sponsored text links, affiliate links, run giveaways, etc.
- There are several AdSense plugins to choose from.
- You can install WooCommerce, the most popular eCommerce platform on the web and sell your own products and services yourself.
- You can monetize your blog any way you want (sponsored posts, affiliate links, eBooks, etc.)
- All Blogger accounts come with 1 Gb disk space to store your photos. This is quite a lot, believe me, and you most likely won’t need more than that for a very long time.
- However, going through your photos can be a daunting task. Finding one, in particular, is almost an impossible endeavor.
- You have as much disk space as you purchased with your hosting plan
- The Media Library is a life-saver. You can view and manage all of your images, videos, and other files from one screen.
- Searching for images is super easy.
- New blog posts get index instantly.
- Responsive design regardless of the template you use (Blogger default or from the web). However, using custom templates from the web will pretty much result in multiple code errors which can hurt your SEO.
- Blogger’s servers are reliable and there is virtually no downtime.
- New blog posts take a few days to be indexed (this depends on how often you publish new content).
- You have to make sure you use a responsive theme that is SEO-optimised.
- WordPress themes have way fewer errors than Blogger’s custom themes
- There might be some downtime, depending on the web host you are using. If you are not happy with your web host, consider migrating to a different one.
- There’s been a lot of talks whether you own or not your Blogger blog. The content is yours, but it’s hosted on Blogger’s servers. So it’s best practice to back up your blog from time to time, just in case. To do so, go to Settings >> Other >> Export blog
- Google might decide to shut down Blogger any time and delete your blog together with it. However, it’s unlikely they will do it overnight and without warning
- Just like Facebook and other social networks, in the fine print, Google reserves the right to use and distribute your content.
- Since your blog is hosted with a web host of your choice, your blog is undeniably yours and you have full control. It’s still good practice that you back up your blog every now and then though. This can be easily done with a plugin like Updraft Plus.
- This doesn’t mean Google can’t penalize it or ban you from AdSense or the search results if you are in violation of their terms and services.
- Blogger’s native comment system offers way too many options, which can be confusing
- There’s no way to manage spam comments so you have to read all comments one by one and approve or delete them. This can be quite time-consuming. Blogs tend to get lots of spam comments.
- You can use the native WordPress comments system, Disqus, CommentLuv, etc.
- Comments can be edited by the admin so you won’t end up with a bunch of misspelled words.
- WordPress makes it super easy to reply to reader comments right from your dashboard.
- There are lots of plugins, like Akismet and Antispam Bee that will automatically delete spam comments for you so you won’t have to read dozens of offensive comments every day.
Security and spam
- Blogger is in general very secure. To be honest, I’ve never heard anyone complaining of being hacked.
- Spam comments are there. Blogger does its best to filter them, but its best is often not good enough.
- WordPress is quite secure, but since it is a self-hosted solution you are responsible for security and backups. There are plenty of plugins that make this task easier for you.
- WordPress blogs are more likely to be hacked and spammed.
Choosing a blogging platform for your new blog should be easy now. Maybe this Blogger vs WordPress comparison brought to your attention many pros and cons you haven’t thought of before. However, the only clear advantage Blogger has is that it’s free.
On the other hand, WordPress is a socially validated blogging platform used by some of the biggest brands in the world (think BBC, The New Yorker, Sony Music, TechCrunch, Time Inc, Walt Disney, and even Beyonce).
If you are serious about blogging and you want others to take you seriously as well, then I highly recommend you create a self-hosted WordPress blog. When you use my Bluehost referral link you can get hosted for as little as $2.95 a month (which is a 63% discount!). This is really inexpensive and Bluehost is a super reliable hosting company. I’ve been using them for years and have no complaints whatsoever.
I truly hope my post helped you make up your mind and choose between Blogger and WordPress. Now it’s time to create your blog. Woohoo! If you need help setting up everything, head on over and follow the steps I highlight in my super detailed post on how to set up a blog (you can use it to create any type of blog, really!). Best of luck!
Hey girl hey! I’m a writer, designer and the creator of I Am Unstoppable: A Journal For Winning At Life. I’m on a mission to inspire and empower women to simplify their blogs and business so they can show up for their dreams in a sustainable way. I also love to travel, play with kitties and decorate my home.