A great deal of you have difficulty deciding whether or not to build a blog (weblog), a website or both. Mainly because you may not understand the difference between the two.
So, first of, to clear up any confusions between a blog being a website and vice versa - A blog is basically a type of website.
A website is a group of pages containing text, images, videos or any other media, which contains a 'home page' with links to other pages throughout the site called 'subpages'. Websites usually requires some sort of knowledge of HTML and XHTML - at least if you want something fairly attractive and unique to draw viewers/customers in. It is generally the official address of a web-based business or idea.
Also, another important note - the pages on a website are almost always static - meaning they rarely change or update.
A blog, on the other hand is a frequently updated journal or "online diary" in which a blogger can use to generate a lot of interesting personal comment and intimate details and information about a particular niche subject or topic that they have chosen to cover - not necessarily on a single subject, and usually doesn't require, if at all, any computer or programming expertise.
The creation of tools to enable non technical users to create a blog, and free hosting service led to the rapid expansion of Blogs from 100 in 1997 to over 20 million in 2005.
But which one is better? Let's look at the differences:
- You need (or should) update everyday
- Almost always written by an individual person
- Organized as a series of posts each with its own title and body, dates and tags and is usually archived (by category or date) in some way with links to each post on the right
- Blogs do not require any cost to use and maintain (unless allowed usage is exceeded)
- Blogs do not require any knowledge of HTML (but can be used if desired)
- Blogs are interactive - allowing visitors to leave comments and even message each other via widgets on the blogs
- There is automatically an RSS or similar feed
- Blogs get indexed quickly by search engines
- You only need to make a page once
- Can be written by more than one person or groups
- Organized as a series of pages with the same main navigation menu located on all individual pages. There are usually no dates or tags since website pages are not updated regularly, if ever.
- Websites are stored on a server, which is a network of computers designed to store them. Server space is sold and maintained by hosting providers - which means you have to pay to have them host your website. Hosting your website on a server ensures that your website is open to the public.
- Some knowledge of HTML is usually required.
- Websites aren't usually interactive.
- No RSS feed is usually provided.
- Websites don't get indexed quickly by search engines
Gosh, looking at the differences automatically one would assume blog is the better choice, hands down, all the way. However, it all depends on you as an individual and what you are trying to do or sell.
But in my personal opinion and experience, if I had to choose between a blog or a website - I would have to choose a blog simply for the fact that it is cheaper to use. Then there are other great factors such as there is no knowledge of HTML required and ease of use is better in terms of setting up and publishing.
Over the years the look and feel of blogs have morphed to resemble static websites and by adding extensions, plugins and custom themes, a user can expand their blog and offer thousands of features.
So in conclusion, blogs are fun and easy to add to and use, but may not offer the facilities you need to upload the content you want. However, a website may suit you if you want to put up some serious one-time information which will not require updating on a regular basis.
For the best of both worlds - why not use both! You can put up your main content on a website and link it to your blog, where you can easily publish updates and keep in touch with your readers.
Blog Facts and Stats:
According to Hubspot, an experiment they conducted in 2009 showed the average company that blogged had:
- 55% more visitors
- 97% more inbound links
- 434% more indexed pages
Did You Know... The World Wide Web (WWW) was created in 1989 by CERN physicist Tim Berners-Lee. On 30 April 1993, CERN announced that the World Wide Web would be free to use for anyone.
The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger on 17 December 1997.
The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase weblog in the sidebar of his Blog Peterme.com in April or May of 1999- - Wikipedia
Resources: build-you-website.co.uk, ezinearticles.com, brandbuildsell.com, hooverwebdesign.com, wikipedia, trafficgenerationcafe.com