WordPress or Blogger, Blogger or WordPress? No Longer a Question of Statistics

comparing apples to apples, wordpress or bloggerArticle first published as Blogger or WordPress: Do Stats Compare? on Technorati.

Blogger or WordPress, WordPress or Blogger? What’s the best free blogging host? It’s the Coke-Pepsi question that comes up repeatedly in Cyberspace, each with pros and cons. Common opinions are: WordPress doesn’t allow JavaScript or AdSense… Blogger is owned by Google which could boot you if they don’t like the content… WordPress has a better forum… Blogger is easier to use… the arguments go on and on.

When I wrote, How to Make, Market and Sell Ebooks All for Free, a whopping 7 months ago, the deal-clincher was the stat-monitoring with WordPress compared to nothing from Blogger. T’was hard to believe since it’s owned by Google which freely offers Google Analytics. Well, that’s all changed and the debate continues.

Way, way back in July 2010 (man, I’m so out of it sometimes) Blogger introduced this feature and quietly added it to existing blogs. Yes, I didn’t even notice until a few weeks ago. Now I can peruse traffic numbers, which posts are most popular and where people are coming from.

Blogger breaks up the page into four sections: Overview, Posts, Traffic Sources and Audience. WordPress has seven: Visits, Referrers, Top Posts and Pages, Search Engine Terms, Clicks, General and Incoming Links. A comparison of categories:

Overview and Visits- similar for both sites reporting visitor numbers by day, week, month and all-time. Blogger has the extra feature of near-live results for each hour within a day. Not hugely important but kinda fun to see what happens after a post or trying to figure where a burst of recent visitors came from. Advantage barely to Blogger.

Posts and Top Posts/Pages- both report each posting and the number of views by popularity. Advantage neither.

Traffic Sources and Referrers- handled differently as Blogger combines Referring Sites, URLs and Keywords to give a rundown of the ways visitors find your blog. WordPress just lists the referring URLs and puts Search Engine Terms and Incoming Links in a separate category. I find this of marginal value; often they lead me places where I cannot determine a link to my site and even wonder if it’s a spam-bot in action. It’s the Keywords that are most useful, as I get a feel for which search terms direct visitors. Additionally WordPress has an Incoming Links category which only lists four links to my blog (strangely all are from my Blogger blog) which is a tiny fraction of the true total. This mistake could count against WordPress, but really the advantage here is neither.

Audience- Blogger has a feature showing which country, browser and operating system the visitors represent. It seems to be grossly inaccurate since it only lists ten countries for my blog and the least common (Spain) has forty-eight visitors. There must be plenty of foreign visits from Australia, Canada and India to name a few that are suspiciously missing. It’s good to know the browser types and operating software; that Internet Explorer and Firefox are the big players as well as Windows. Also fun to see a few visitors utilized iPhones, iPads and Blackberries to visit. Since WordPress doesn’t offer this, advantage Blogger.

Clicks- WordPress has this category for what links people clicked to go elsewhere. This is smart as the most common clicks tell a blog owner what external sources visitors appreciate. Advantage WordPress.

General- within the WordPress tab of General is a subset for Subscriptions, people who have chosen to follow your blog. Could be a great way to contact others or look into networking possibilities. Advantage WordPress.

Overall, these are fairly equal. If I had to choose, WordPress would have the tiniest advantage in stats though it’s still a toss-up. Because of my love for JavaScript gadgets, I’ll probably remain teetering on Blogger’s side on the fence.

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Future of Web-designers: Extinction or Evolution?

make free website, your own free website, how to make your own free website, web design, sell ebooksArticle first published as Future of Web-designers: Extinction or Evolution?; on Technorati.

Often times I wonder, is the future of web-designers extinction or evolution? Extinction is probably a harsh word. After all, we don’t hold web-designers in the same boat with accident attorneys, IRS collection employees or oil and pharmaceutical executives. Evolution is really a better term for web-designers, as in they’ll likely need to evolve to stay afloat. I say this because their services are similar to others that are destined to be obsolete in the near future, like video rental warehouses and brick and mortar bookstores. You might ask, however, why is the future uncertain for web-design? Well, because it’s incredibly easy for anyone to build their own website and to do it for free. Part of this is really my own much needed therapy; it’s a rant of pent up energy after spending several thousand dollars on four different web-designers over the past few years, especially after learning, to my painful amusement, that I could have built the sites myself for free. Now that so many web and blog hosting services offer both the space at their venues and the site-building software included, absolutely anyone can make his/her own website and edit it to hearts content for no cost. Don’t believe me? Check out these dot coms: webs, yola, wordpress, blogger, weebly, wetpaint, webstarts, viviti, forummotion and so many others. Most of these companies didn’t exist when I first hired out for a site, and you can bet on it that many more are popping up all the time. The competition will only increase to give users more flexibility, bandwidth, applications and ease of use when it comes to making their websites. Oh, and of course it will absolutely have to be free of cost. Yes, a pure dot com domain still costs a bit, about $10 per year, but does it really matter anymore if your domain name ends with the extra suffix as in example.webs.com? Hardly anyone manually types in a URL these days; they click on links to go everywhere. Wouldn’t surprise me if you could get the pure dot com for free pretty soon. That would be a nice feature for a fledgling free web-hosting company. I can see it soon, custom domain names included for free! So what are these $120/hr web-designers going to do in the not so distant future? My guess is they’ll either work for the rich and lazy or specialize in increasingly complex sites. Today the average Joe has plenty of options for getting a name, business and online identity happening at absolutely no cost. Read more: http://technorati.com/blogging/article/future-of-web-designers-extinction-or/#ixzz10Cr2rKU3

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