Website or blog?

jennNovember 11, 2007

I've had my own personal website for a several years that I created to share recipes, gardening, and other information around the home.

I've found quite a few recipe blogs that I like very much. Some have their own domain.

Can anyone tell me the differences in maintaining a blog vs. a website?

I have no idea where to begin... but for starters I'd like:

-- My own domain (easier for others to remember)

-- Highly expandable... I don't want to wish I had more space or options later, and have to move again

-- First-rate service (like what FutureQuest.com provides for my personal site now)

-- Attractive user-friendly site that does not require a log-in

-- No ads, pop-ups, etc.

-- Lots of space for photos

Can anyone recommend some good blog hosts, and places to start?

Thanks,

Jen

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holly_bc

Frankly, I don't know an awfully great deal about blogs. In those I've observed, they seem to me to be more of a journal (which one could do on their own website anyway) than a place to share photos/projects/home + garden stuff. And mostly I've found them rather boring. :-))

Maintenance wouldn't be all that much different. You still either need to use a program (such as FPage for websites and I'm sure there are others for blogs) or use some 'pre-scripted' site which gives you choices of interface(s)/font . . .

I also maintain my own website which I find far more flexible (and interesting) than most blogs I've come across. Actually I find most blogs hard to read/navigate.

I guess I'm not really answering your question. LOL. Have you tried a Google on terms like "Blog Space" or "Blog Software" or other similar terms?

Unless you create a blog within your own website (which gives you control over all parts of the site) I believe your blog cannot have a unique name but will be something like --mysiteatXYZblogspotdotcom.

As I find blogs largely boring and as you already have a website, I'm rather confused why you want a blog at all when you already have a website.

I'm wondering if what you have is one of those offered by your broadband/dsl provider which does not have a unique name? If so - that is easy to change at not a great deal of cost and may provide you with all you desire.

Perhaps someone else who is more familiar with blogs can weigh in with more blog info.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 6:32PM
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mollyavalon

It's true that blogs can be much more journal-ish than websites. But they don't have to be.
A blog uses special software that resides on the server, not on your computer. It's set up to make it dead easy to edit.

Re your requirements:

  • -- My own domain (easier for others to remember) - Blog setup is free, but there are extras you can pay for. Using your own domain is one of those extras. If you don't use your own domain you'll have a URL such as the one Holly put above.

  • -- Highly expandable... I don't want to wish I had more space or options later, and have to move again - With Wordpress you get 50MB of space, and I believe Blogspot is similar. At the same time, and related to the previous point, you can sign up with a regular web host that also provides blog software. Then the amount of space you use is limited only by your account with them. I've never heard of an individual user (as opposed to a company) whose host doesn't have enough space for them. It costs more, of course. (Do a search for "web host wordpress" or "web host blog". I see that FutureQuest doesn't provide this, but you could ask them.)

  • -- First-rate service (like what FutureQuest.com provides for my personal site now) - I think that there are sites out there that rate web hosts. But competition for hosting is so intense that a host that provides poor service won't stay in business very long. As for the blog-specific sites, like Wordpress and Blogger, I haven't heard any complaints.

  • -- Attractive user-friendly site that does not require a log-in
    -- No ads, pop-ups, etc.
    -- Lots of space for photos
    Ads are dependent on what you want. On Wordpress, you don't have to have them. If it's hosted on your own web host, the same is true. I think when you see ads it either means the hosting is free with the understanding that you'll allow their ads, or that the person whose site/blog it is has put them up. Google ads are very easy to put in, and in theory get you some revenue. I'd never have them on my blog.

I started a blog on Wordpress last summer because a friend of mine needed help getting started, so I did one so I could see how it worked. It's free, and you can start one up in a matter of minutes. You can select from a variety of free themes, and then you can customize from there. You don't need any software on your own computer.

So I'd suggest you just try one and see what you think.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 3:26PM
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jenn

The main reason why I'm considering switching to a blog rather than my web site is to save money and time. It is very easy to create a new recipe on the blog. On the web site, I need to (1) create a new file, (2) upload the file, (3) update the file that links to the new file, and (4) upload that file. Not only that, I pay a lot for the web host and while they are excellent, it's a little painful to pay the bill each year.

I have begun a blog at blogspot.com and started posting recipes. It's VERY easy to just copy/paste the text from the recipes at my web site into the blog, and save it.

The only thing that concerns me is how the blogs are backed up. mollyavalon, perhaps you can explain that to me. Does Wordpress do back-ups of blogs so they can be restored? It's scary to think I'd do a lot of work on a blog and then it's all gone in a server crash or virus attack.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 1:55AM
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mdvaden_of_oregon

You know...we get what we pay for.

Personally, I don't find the $130 I pay per year for my webhosting to be very "painful". And I could pay less, but am returning a favor to someone.

On the other hand, I get $100 per month average from Google due to people visiting Google Ads on my pages. But even without coming through the year over $1000 into "the black", I still think $100 or so per year is a bargain for web hosting.

For some pages, I considered the "Free" blog spots. But most of them have very little control over content. Someone could be more versatile with their very own blog, but it would cost more.

Or "may" cost more. Depends. If it get a lot of visits, you could post Google ads and see if it pays-off a bit. Hard to know unless you try it.

My choice was to skip a blog, and get a forum loaded up instead, allowing it to really become a live thing. Some sections can be locked, other sections can be left open to replies.

Good free forum software is available. The hardest part is probably loading it into a server.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 4:33PM
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