It looks like I’ve finally done it. I’ve accepted that my current system of building websites with Notepad, HTML and some very crappy CSS just isn’t gonna cut it in the fickle Web 2.0 world. People want gadgets and gizmos and content that’s updated 3 times an hour and RSS feeds and all the bells and whistles that, until a couple weeks ago, I had pretty much zero knowledge of.
Why I am a Blogging Convert:
- Community - This is by far the major advantage to starting a blog. They’re interactive and you will be almost instantly connected to a community of like-minded people. Bloggers are a lot less anal about sharing a bit of link love and following people’s blogrolls is a great way to find other people who are into the same things as you.
- Instant Feedback - No matter how great the content on my static websites is, it’s very unlikely that I’ll get any feedback on it. Sure, I can see how popular a page is in the stats, but it can’t compare to getting a comment with feedback on what you’ve written. I know I can set this sort of thing up on my sites but I’m too lazy to figure out how to do it and using WordPress makes the whole process painless.
- Loads of Templates - I hadn’t realised how many websites there are out there with free WordPress themes for me to get my greedy paws on. Even if customisation is beyond the blogger, the availability of templates means that we’re not subjected to loads of sites that are clones of one another.
- Customisation Easier Than I Thought - When I made my first few head exploding attempts at customising my WordPress theme I was downloading and uploading everything with a separate FTP program. I hadn’t realised I could do all the customisation in the admin area and this discovery has made everything a lot less confusing.
- Widgets - Why didn’t anyone tell me about the wonderful world of dragging and dropping plugins? Now that I’ve discovered the mighty widget, all is clear. It’s great being able to add cool features to the sidebar without having to wrestle with coding I don’t understand.
- Can Be Up and Running in Minutes - There really isn’t much to getting a blog up and running and that’s a totally new thing to me. Most of the sites I design from scratch take a month or two before they’re alive and kicking. Setting up a blog gets things going quickly and if I want to add static pages to teh site later I still have that option. Things move fast in the online world and wasting a month tweaking a design really isn’t the best use of my time.
- Non Techie People Have Things to Say Too - Ok snobbery aside, I suppose I can share the net with people who might be a bit HTML challenged. There are pleny of people out there who have stuff to say but might be a bit techie challenged and I still want to be able to read their ramblings. BlogsÂ have openedÂ up the internet to one and all and for every crappy blog out there I’m sure there are a few that I’m glad I’ve found.
So I have been mostly converted to the powers of the blog but still have a few reservations. I’m still a bit dubious about a few things like the long layout of the intro page (although I know this can be tweaked) and I think static website have an advantage with search engines (this isn’t based on anything really… just my own experiences) but I love the interactivity and sense of community and that outweighs any negatives.
Once I start working on my mighty web empire full time I might experiment with moving a static site over to WordPress. Travoholic.com is in shambles so I think this site might be a good candidate. I always seem pretty resistant to change (I still use Notepad to build my sites!) but I think I’m sold on the merits of blogging and WordPress as a content management system.
Is anyone else an anti-blog convert?