Saturday, December 19, 2009

Difference Chart 2009 Between Blogger and Wordpress

In the following chart features at Blogger ( and are compared. These are the two main contenders for free blog hosting. Features which are clearly better at either BlogSpot or Wordpress have been highlighted. Widgets are listed in another summary table after the features list. If you have your own website with PHP/MySQL support, you can download and use WordPress with no restrictions (get it here).

Themes and customization You can edit template layouts, styles and colors, or install a third party theme. No template editing. Style sheet editing is only available as a paid upgrade. Many of the 60+ themes let you upload a header image. Some have additional customization options.
Visitor stats You can include third party tracker scripts
— or any type of script.
No scripts allowed. The admin dashboard shows 2 days of stats and daily, weekly and monthly graphs.
Import Only from another BlogSpot blog. Import from Blogger, Yahoo! 360, Live·JournaI, Type·Pad, MovabIe·Type or another WordPress blog.
Image storage 1 Gigabyte. There is no interface to browse through the images unless you sign up for Picasa Web Albums. 3 Gigabytes. Paid upgrades are available to add more space.
You can also upload .ppt, .doc, .odt and .pdf files (more file types with an upgrade).
Galleries You can use Picasa Web Albums. Simply add the tag [gallery] to any post or page (more info).
Static pages Not available. Create posts or 'pages'. Static pages are listed in separate menus.
Categories 'Labels'. 'Categories'.
Optional excerpts New: Expandable post summaries (more info). Some WP themes allow unique text. Others depend on a "more" tag.
Post by email Submit your posts by email. You can receive new posts by email too (helpful for team blogs). Submit your posts by email. Images can be attached (more info).
Contact forms Not available. You could add a third-party contact form, however. Simply add the tag
to any post or page.
Private blogs You can restrict access to invited Google account holders. You can restrict access to 35 invited Wordpress account holders (unlimited with a paid upgrade).
Alternatively, individual posts can be password protected or Private.
Team blogs Administrators and non-administrators only. Administrator, Editors, Authors and Contributors.
Comments Visual confirmation and moderation options, but no editing of comments. Moderation, comment editing and Akismet spam protection.
Widgets See the next table.

Blogger comments:

Visitors can preview comments. They can also choose to receive follow-up comments by email. However, the embedded Comment Form option is entirely dependent on JavaScript.

Wordpress comments:

Earlier in 2009 added follow-ups by email and comment threading options. Wordpress has more comment options than Blogger, but there have been problems with Akismet spam protection. See this post on the WP user forum...

Widgets compared:

BlogSpot Widgets
Add a Gadget Software applications that do cool things. There's an extensive menu in the sidebar.
Followers Displays a list of users who follow your blog.
Blog List Show off what you read with a blogroll of your favourite blogs.
Subscription Links Let your readers easily subscribe to your blog with popular feed readers.
Slideshow Add a slideshow of your photos to your blog.
Newsreel Automatically add current headlines from Google News to your blog. (see an example)
Video Bar Display clips from YouTube and Google Video for your readers to watch without leaving the page.
List Add a list of your favourite books, films or anything you like.
Link List Add a collection of your favourite sites, blogs or web pages.
[for the sidebar]
Add a picture from your computer or from somewhere else on the web.
Text Add some words to your blog - like a welcome message - with our rich text editor.
HTML/JavaScript Add third-party functionality or other code to your blog. [ i.e., any third-party widget]
AdSense Earn revenue by displaying relevant ads on your blog.
Feed Add content from a site feed to your blog.
Labels [categories] Show all the labels of posts in your blog.
Logo Choose from a variety of Blogger logos to add to your page.
Profile Display information about yourself. [Wordpress blogs have an "About" page]
Page Header Display your blog's title and description.
Blog Archive Display links to older posts.
Poll Survey your visitors by adding a poll to your blog. [Regular visitors can dictate the outcome by voting again and again!] Widgets
Akismet | Archives | Blog Stats | file sharing | Calendar | Categories | | Flickr | Links | Meebo | Meta | Pages | Platial MapKit | Recent Comments | Recent Posts | Search | Sonific Songspot | Tag Cloud | Text | Top Clicks | Top Posts | Vod:Pod Videos | Twitter | Gravatar | RSS Links

WordPress shortcodes are like widgets for individual posts. For example, you could add a poll.


Theme choices

Although the collection of 60+ themes sounds like a lot, many of them are quite disappointing. Two of the themes are specifically for the Christmas season, and of the remainder, a significant proportion are gaudy or tacky (in my opinion). A few of the themes have bugs which would be obvious to anyone who had done cross-browser testing at different screen resolutions. And if you don't like small font sizes (smaller than on this page), the number of acceptable choices shrinks even further. Considering that there are many hundreds of excellent Wordpress themes out there, it's hard to fathom the criteria that inspired this particular collection. Check out these full-size screenshots of themes before you sign up (not a complete list).

If you don't like any of the BlogSpot themes you can modify them or install third party themes. There's a template customization tutorial here.

Ongoing improvements

The WordPress team frequently add new features and sometimes new themes, and since the new BlogSpot publishing system was rolled out in 2006, the Blogger software team have added new features too. Visit the developer blogs to find out what's new:


I wanted to find out what was on offer in terms of free blog hosting. A year ago, Blogger was looking stale, and didn't have nearly as many themes or features as it does now. On this occasion I chose Blogger, and this is my first post. If allowed stylesheet editing without having to pay, and visitor stats comparable to the tracker scripts you can obtain for free, my choice would have been for sure.


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