Monthly Archives: May 2015

Blog Comparison

Let’s look at WordPress, Blogger, and Square Space. Square Space isn’t a blogging platform per-say, but rather a website editor with blogging tools. One can argue this is what wordpress has tured into anyway.

If I were to rank these for blogging I’d probably put then Blogger, WordPress, and then Square Space. The reason being is, with blogging you really only need an easy publishing tool, and it doesn’t get much easier than blogger. It’s straight forward, easy to use and really only does one thing. WordPress has evolved into a very in-depth web authoring tool and as such can be a bit harder to hit the ground running. Square Space has blogging as a feature more than anything else.

If I were to rank these by best overall tool however, I’d probably put them WordPress, Square Space, and then Blogger. WordPress is extreamly extensible, has access to probably millions of plugings, and the source code is 100% editable. It’s easy to stand on the shoulders of giants with WordPress and make some amazing things. Square Space is a great authoring tool, with some amazing built in customization features, but is a bit less open to edit. Blogger is very limited and very hard to edit. I’ve had experience with how cumbersome it is.

When choosing one though you still have to factor in other things, like the fact that Square Space isn’t free. Blogger ONLY runs on it’s platform and the underlying code I don’t believe is customizable at all. The large majority of developers know wordpress (at least some what) and could help if needed. These are just some other factors that come into play when choosing one.

Best Practices

It’s going to be hard to separate my personal beliefs I’ve held in my profession for years and those I am trying to read about today. While not an avid blogger, I’ve been involved in many blogs for years because of my profession. So without any particular order, the list.

Search Engine Optimization

While this encompasses and effects much of what you do on your blog, I think it’s almost the most important. You write a blog to get read, and generally to get read it must get found. Taking into account how search engines find your work and rank it will dramatically affect how you go about blogging.

Content is King (https://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-social-media/blogging)

I’m going to lump a few tips into one here. People come to your blog to get to your content, and as such, some things matter much less. What that is depends on your blog. I don’t care much about the design, pictures or writing style of the progamming blogs I read. I care about the clarity and examples. If I were a photographer I would care much less about the words and more about the images. When I read sports blogs I care much more about the creative writing style and images than I do in some other areas. Think about your auidence, why they are there, and whatever content they are looking for. Make that content king.

Involve Readers (http://www.campaignercrm.com/en/community/blog/crm/post/10-best-practices-for-corporate-blogging/)

I think one of the other most important thing is involving the readers. There are a few blogs I’ve visited where I can’t comment on the posts. This can be bad when I have questions or would like clarity on topics covered. It’s not needed for every setting, but in most cases, comments can’t hurt.

Educational Blogs

Most of the internet I frequent I would consider to be educational blogs. At least, they way I see it, blogs that teach or train would be educational, not just blogs that focus on traditional education. In fact this blog I am posting to is one I used to teach the webmasters I worked with how to use our system and to perform their tasks. I don’t aspire to be a teacher so I think these are much more applicable to my career. Though, some of these blogs are used in conjunction with or referenced from training I have attended.

I think the most useful thing about blog software in regards to teaching is the ease in which teachers can show examples and answer questions or otherwise interact with students and have the thoughts of all shared with everyone. It’s pretty great actually. One of my favorite is Norman Nielsen’s article blogs. (http://www.nngroup.com/articles/) Sure he calls them articles, but if you read through them they are pretty much in blog format and do a great job of teaching as well as selling their services.

Ben Nadal (http://www.bennadel.com/) is a great example of sharing his skills and expertise through his blogs. He never hesistates to interact with his readers, follow up on their questions, and touch on trending topics.

Smashing Magazine (http://www.smashingmagazine.com/) has daily articles as well which resemble NNG’s posts above. In all these example they provide what amounts to free training for those interested.