New to blogging for money? Google’s Blogger appears to be a great deal on the exterior, it’s free!
Lift up the HTML hood and you will be surprised to find a very small engine to transport you to your big dreams of advertising revenue. Although Blogger easily integrates with Google and Amazon advertising programs, the real problems developing a Blogger blog for money come in the restrictions.
1. It is designed to be too easy
The first problem with Blogger is it is designed to be easy, not teach the mechanics of blogging. Just drag and drop your elements in a layout screen. A nifty one-click option buys your own domain name and all of the technical DNS settings automated.
Why is this a problem? If and when you decide to move your blog to dedicated hosting for other benefits, namely a dedicated IP address or more storage space, not learning the basics of blog design and maintenance is crippling.
Google attempts to integrate Blogger and its domain name provider partners into the massive list of Google Applications. The result is far too many options for someone new to blogging and most of it is not applicable.
The support pages are pretty technical too, focusing more on technical definitions and less on step-by-step instructions. Blogger goes from holding a new author’s hand while buying a custom domain name to a sudden onslaught of options and settings to manage or seriously mess up the new blog in the blink of an eye.
2. Theme options designed for standart blog layouts
The theme options for Blogger are best suited for standard blog layouts and designs, not the new generation of flash slideshows and news tickers frequently featured on free Word Press themes. There are options for a new blogger to easily add a photo for the header, but getting the graphic’s dimensions just right for your theme layout takes advanced pixel measuring. The lack of originality in Blogger themes makes it very difficult for new bloggers to compete for avid readers.
3. Little variety in creating a home page
Also unlike Word Press, there is very little variety in creating a home page. Older versions of Blogger allowed authors to trick the system into making a static home page. This workaround is removed in the newest version of Blogger, meaning every home page consists of the latest posts in a prominent location.
Blogger users also cannot upload their own documents like PDF or word processing documents to their posts. This means if you do have say a free e-book featured on your blog, you will need to “host” the content at another site and only link to it from your Blogger blog, making your reader leave your site.
4. No Friendly URLs
The biggest restrictions on a Blogger blog for money come in search engine optimization. Instead of blogging platforms like Word Press where an author can change the permalink as she creates the post, Blogger ascribes to the formulaic date/title format.
This is a huge setback for any writer attempting to optimize links for keywords. Search engines do not like stop words (a, the, it, etc.) and really focus on the first three words in title.
Readers on the other hand would like grammatically correct titles, not titles that sound like gibberish. Consider a post titled “Blogging for Money: Blogger Is A Poor First Choice.”
Here is how Blogger would make a permalink:
In other blogging software, an author has more control over permalinks, including a parent category to add another keyword. For example in WordPress, an author could place that post in a category titled “work-at-home” and make the last part anything he wanted:
A Word Press permalink:
The control over keywords in the URL is a big deal as search terms are not always grammatically correct. When a new blogger really delves deeper into blogging for money he will find that SEO still drives traffic. Using any kind of keyword competition tool, a slightly more obscure keyword phrase allows for top ten competition, even though the content covers the same information.
For example, “blogging for money” may be a key phrase that is too saturated for any real traffic from search engines. Instead, an author may pursue the key phrase “blog to make part-time income.” In Blogger, unless that is also your post title, you cannot place that key phrase into your URL.
5. Does not offer a “pay” option
If you are looking to just learn the ropes of blogging, sign-up for a free Word Press blog and then graduate to a paid hosting service that installs the free Word Press software with one click. Blogger does not offer a “pay” option, and a free Word Press blog at wordpress.com does not allow you to post your own pay-per-click advertisements or affiliate information.
Learning the ins and outs of Blogger will not allow you to graduate up to a newer level of control. The free wordpress.com blogs allow a new blogger to learn the mechanics of Word Press and easily exports to your paid-hosting Word Press blog.
The faults of Blogger as just free blogging software are many, and these become insurmountable obstacles when developing a blog for income. The limitations on style, post organization, and keyword control translate into a bored audience, too much concentration on the latest post, and few opportunities to manage how a search engine judges your content.
All of these issues make success in advertising or affiliate programs an uphill struggle. Despite easy integration with many Google Applications, including Adsense, and partnering with Amazon’s Associate program, the difficulties in designing a blog the author envisions and driving traffic to read it outweigh the convenience.