If you’re an OG blogger, you might’ve used the platform appropriately named Blogger to create your online journal. Your domain name was probably something like http://bloggerwhoblogsonblogger.blogspot.com/ and that’s where the confusion began for bloggers and blog readers everywhere.
Are Blogspot and Blogger The Same Thing?
Yes and no. Blogs with blogspot.com domains confused the hell out of everyone because people assumed that Blogspot was a blog-creating platform. That’s not the case.
Users who create blogs on Blogger are automatically given a free Blogspot domain for their site, like example.blogspot.com. So Blogspot is really just a subdomain service that exists to support Blogger.
More confusion ensues when people are automatically redirected to Blogger.com after typing Blogspot.com in their address bar. A lot of people think that Blogspot became Blogger, but that’s not how Blogspot works. It’s always been a subdomain service, and Blogger is the content creation platform.
So when people ask ‘Does Blogspot still exist?’ The answer is yes—just not in the way they probably think.
Creating a Blog on Blogger
Blogger was created by Pyra Labs in 1999, which is why you’ll see a lot of old-school blogs with blogspot.com subdomains. It was bought by Google in 2003, and all Blogger accounts have been hosted on Google’s servers since 2006, making it a pretty reliable platform to build on.
How does Blogger work?
Like we mentioned before, anyone who creates a site on Blogger automatically receives a free Blogspot domain, but Blogger also lets you use your own custom domain. You’ll have the option of buying a custom domain from Google right inside the platform. A Google account (like Gmail) is required to get started, but you probably already have one of those.
Once you’ve chosen a title and domain for your blog, you’ll pick a template or upload your own (there’s tons of designs available from third parties online). From there, it’s pretty easy to get started. The platform has been around since the dawn of blogging and it’s still pretty lightweight, designed to be a basic tool.
There’s a simple dashboard with a left-hand menu where you can select ‘New Post’ and just start writing—it’s really only as complicated as you make it. Unlike a lot of the website builders out there, Blogger was made for blogging. So if you just want to write the way you would in Google Docs and get your stuff out there, Blogger’s CMS is great for that.
You can play with personalizing your theme by editing in HTML, if you know how to do that. If not, you’ll pretty much have to stick with the template and just start writing. There are, however, a few basic customization options you can choose from using Gadgets (the equivalent of Wordpress’s Widgets), like adding a comments section or displaying your archive.
Using the left-hand menu, you’ll also be able to edit previously published blog posts and view analytics and earnings from ads.
Benefits of Using Blogger to Create Your Blog
The major advantage of using Blogger is that you have the perks of being connected to Google.
- Your site is hosted on Google’s servers, which are a lot more secure than others. You won't need to secure your blog or create any backups because Google pretty much has you covered, unless Blogger goes down. You also don’t need to worry about software updates or installation issues either.
- Blogger helps you figure out how to monetize your blog by using AdSense.
- What is AdSense? It’s a Google program that matches ads to your site based on your content and visitors. When your ad space becomes available through AdSense, advertisers can bid on your space and you can choose the highest bidder to make the most profit. AdSense also helps you optimize your ads for desktop or mobile, and takes care of the billing process with advertisers to make sure you get paid.
* You don’t need to use Blogger to use AdSense, but you do need to use one of AdSense’s approved host partners.
4. You can easily connect your blog to Google Analytics to get deeper insights than you would from a more basic analytics program.
Disadvantages of Using Blogger to Create Your Blog
The disadvantage of using Blogger to create your blog is also that you’re connected to Google.
- Google owns your site, not you, and they can suspend your blog at any time. You’re tied to Blogger’s terms and conditions.
- Blogspot domains are kind of unsightly and outdated, and you might lose some credibility if you have one. (It’s worth getting your own, and you can still use Blogger without a Blogspot domain.)
- Customization is limited. Blogger’s templates are more basic and rigid than other platforms. Creatives who want their blog to be more design-forward probably don’t want to use Blogger.
- Google makes it super difficult for you to switch to another platform if Blogger isn’t working out for you, so if you don't like dealing with headaches or you’re kind of lazy, you’re stuck there.