Google just keep taking away features that we all seem to use. First it was Google Friend Connect for non-blogger blogs. No more of that and my following got me quite a lot of traffic, thanks.
Now they are pulling Google Reader. The RSS reader has been losing users and Google clearly want to focus their efforts on other projects. On July 1st the reader will be retired and I know a lot of bloggers are wondering if they should stick with Google.
You might user Google Reader to keep up with your favourite fashion and beauty blogs. Or perhaps you see a lot of traffic coming from it.
Alternatives to Google Reader
I can’t recommend Bloglovin enough. I’ve spoken about it many a time on here but it really is the best place to read your favourite blogs… If they are signed up.
One of the biggest downsides to this reader is that you can’t just pull the RSS feed from any blog. You have to find your fave then follow them.
However, any blog who has any pride or business savvy is on Bloglovin’. You shouldn’t struggle to find the ones you want to follow. It’s also a good chance to discover new blogs.
They’ve made it easy to transfer your Google Reader blogs to Bloglovin’.
You should also take a look at this article from CNET, it gives great alternatives to Google Reader.
Give up on Google?
Now, I love Google. However, I don’t really get on with Blogger, I never have. A lot of bloggers are talking about moving away from Google now that they are taking away services. I wouldn’t recommend this. Although WordPress.org (the self-hosted version) is much, much better, you’ve got no reason to move away from Blogger just yet.
However, if they keep taking away services (I’ve heard rumours of Feed Burner and Google Friend Connect) then there’s not really any reason to stay as WordPress.org is much better as a blogging platform.
If you do want to make the change
WordPress.org is a little more complicated than WordPress.com and Blogger. Instead of just signing up and getting a blog you have to sort yourself out with hosting. I use TSOHost and to set up WordPress blog with them is very straight forward. If you want some advice on how to do this just email me jess(at)feelingstylish.co.uk.
I will be doing a full tutorial on this at a later date. However, for the time being, check out the WordPress.org documentation.
Benefits of WordPress.org
- You have more control over your SEO
- You’ll get your own domain name
- You have thousands of more choices when it comes to layout
- There are thousands of plugins that change the look/functionality of your blog
- More control over documents, media files, bandwidth and email addresses
If you do think you’ll eventually make the move, do it now. You can then use your old blog to slowly drive those followers to the new URL. You can also remind them that you can be followed over at Bloglovin’ or whichever other RSS aggregator you recommend. You can make sure everyone is following you somewhere by the time Google Reader is retired in July.