Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Blog or Website - The Eternal Question by Morgan Mandel

Now that Blogger has added the ability to add 10 new pages to a blog, it's even more tempting not to maintain a website.

I've got one over at http://www.morganmandel.com/, but I have to admit I don't update it anywhere near as often as my personal blog. That's because blogs are designed to be interactive. The news is fresh. I can see almost immediately when someone makes a comment and can answer right away. A website doesn't offer that, unless--

Unless, you have the  best of both worlds and can somehow place your blog prominently on your website, so people can still makes comments. I still don't know how to do that, but I believe there is a way. I do have links to my blogs listed there, but that's not the same thing.

Anyway, the next best thing is the extra 10 pages Blogger offers. I've already set them up at http://morganmandel.blogspot.com/ . If I don't incorporate a blog in my website, someday I may change the layout of my blog so it looks like a website. Until then, I'll keep my main website at http://www.morganmandel.com/ . I may always keep it. There's so much over there I'd hate to waste it. If you've got nothing to do, stop over sometime. You may find something of interest there.

If this post seems all over the place, that's because there are a bewildering number of choices. You can tell I'm not exactly sure where I'll go next, or what will happen next in the blogging world.

What about you? What do you prefer - a blog or website? If both, how do you manage them - altogether, or separate?

Thanks,
Morgan Mandel
Find me also at http://facebook.com/morgan.mandel

19 comments:

L. Diane Wolfe said...

There is a way to put the two together, I've just never tried.

I maintain both. And while my YA series website will eventually go away, my professional speaker site will not. For that, a website is better than the blog. And at the moment, my series website and blog have completly different angles. Most of my reader fans visit the website instead of the blog.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

I have enough trouble taking care of my one-page blog. Have lots of pages on my website. Though I suppose if I were just starting out, a blog would be enough for a website, with so many pages available.

Marilyn

Sharon said...

I swapped my website for a blog, and I like it better. When I had the site it was difficult to find background graphics. I easily found templates for the blog.

Karen Walker said...

Hi Morgan,
I have a website for book fulfillment and PR kinds of stuff, but truthfully, no books are getting sold from that site. I prefer the blog for the reasons you mentioned - it's interactive and immediate. I didn't know blogger had added that new feature. have to check it out now.
Karen

Stephen Tremp said...

Although I have both, my blog is my Web site. I never go to my Web site or update it. My blog is where all the action is. This is where visitors can easily purchase my books, leave comments, interact with me, and network with other bloggers, authors, and editors.

I'm having new business cards made and using my blog site rather than the eb site.

Stephen Tremp

carl brookins said...

I have both because they perform different functions for different audiences, according to traffic reports.

Just as do the other sites I belong to, plus I get more places to insert my reviews of crime fiction.

Jesse Fox said...

I'm fairly new to the publishing world (close to 2 years) and in that time I've tried a few things. I finally discovered Word Press which works for me. It has both multi-pages and a blog, RSS Feed, and e-mail subscription. It also has connection capabilities to Twitter, Yahoo, and Google if I'm not mistaken.

Yes, it's free, but you can also purchase an upgrade and the good thing is that even with the free version I was able to have my name first in the URL.

http://jessefox1968.wordpress.com/

Having Word Press has simplified my life. Somewhere down the line I'm hoping to purchase an upgrade, but until then I'm content.

Maryann Miller said...

Morgan, this topic is being discussed on a couple of loops and blogs, and it is most interesting. I can see the possibility of only having one site to maintain being a real benefit to writers. We are all so stretched for time, that I would like to move toward only updating one site. What I don't look forward to in reconstructing all that is on my Web site on my blogger pages.

Cheryl said...

I started a blog first because I wanted an online presence and didn't have a website or the knowledge to create one.

I now have several blogs and a website through a free host. I am looking at having a site designed through WordPress this year because my first book is coming out. If it's in WordPress I should be able to maintain it myself, which is good for a control freak; but I'll always be more of a blogger than someone who updates her website.

Cheryl

Morgan Mandel said...

When I didn't pay attention to my blog, I constantly updated my website. I like the way my front page looks on my website, but other than that, I don't go there often myself.

If anyone doesn't know how to add those extra pages on your Blogger blog, I've got instructions for you at my personal blog at http://morganmandel.blogspot.com

Morgan Mandel

Brooke said...

I have a full service website which intergrates three blogs- Book Reviews, Podcast, and an essay section. I also created additional pages for and Index which has books listed by genre, author, and rating. I also have photo pages for book themed events. I also have a discussion forum.

Having one website doesn't increase the amount of time I spend working on my site. The the three blogs are what gets updated most. Everything else stays the same. I do notice that because I have everything in one website people spend a lot more time browsing. In fact I have twice the pageloads that I have in visits. I've noticed that some people literally spend an hour on my website.


I would recommend the switch to a website with integrated blog. But come visit and see for yourself.

Debra St. John said...

I have a website of my own, which I update fairly regularly. As far as blogging, I just "share" this one with the gang here. I really don't have time to post more than once a week, so this method works out best for me.

Helen said...

I have both blog and website, but have thought of doing the Blogger pages with information. Sort of a mini-website. I'm going to go look at what you've done.

Helen
Straight From Hel

Lisabet Sarai said...

Hi, Morgan,

I have both a blog and a website. There's a link on the front page of my website that does to the blog. There's a link on the blog that goes to the website.

I view the two as both necessary. They serve different functions. The blog is for interacting, for sharing daily thoughts, for running impromptu contests and for serious promoting. It also provides me with the opportunity to reciprocate when other authors have me as a guest on their blogs.

The website is cumulative. It has information on all my books. Every month (at least) I do an update of my "news" page, which serves as a newsletter. I usually add a new free read. I'll add any covers and excerpts for new releases. But I generally don't take anything away. I maintain my publishing history on my website, adding new information each month also.

Blogs are ephemeral. Yes, you can go back and look in the archives, but it's not always easy to find the post you're looking for if you don't remember exactly when it came from. A website is more a "permanent" presence that also gives readers more choice in what they want to peruse.

Also - as I mentioned on your other blog recently--I wouldn't trust a free service like Blogger to be my only web presence. You have zero recourse if for some reason the service disappears or they decide to kick you off.

Best,
Lisabet

Julie Lomoe said...

I love my WordPress blog. It has so many features, including the static pages, that it can function almost like a website.

I also have a basic website my husband put up for me four years ago, but I don't know how to update it myself and it's virtually extinct. I'd still like to have a website I can manage myself and have the blog as a link from it, as many of you do. One of these days . . .

Speaking of that, does anyone have any free user-friendly web design programs you can recommend?

Julie Lomoe's Musings Mysterioso
http://julielomoe.wordpress.com

Rebbie Macintyre said...

I agree with some of the other comments: I have a hard time keeping up with a blog and a website. I don't need to add anything else. I'll stick to that, but it's always good to know more about resources. Thanks, Rob.

Kate Collins said...

A website gives an author a professional appearance and can serve multiple functions at once. But there's nothing like a blog to interact with readers. I do a once a week blog with other mystery authors, plus have a Facebook presence to connect with fans, in addition to my website, but I like Brooke's suggestion of integrating the blog within the website. Good discussion!

Dorian said...

When you are starting your website it is necessary that it come within the first 30 websites that get listed on Google or any other search for people to visit your site. In order to do this it is necessary to do web positioning (posicionamiento web) to increase your web rank.

royal caribbean cruises said...

I just want to tell the key difference between blog and website to you so you can decide yourself what to do is better.The key differences between a blog and website is that a blog's main function is being a web log or online diary. Online diary is where a blogger can generate a lot of interesting personal comment and details and information about a particular niche subject or topic that they have chosen to cover. Blogs are quick and easy to set up. A web site on the other hand is the official address and location of a web-based business. Just the place you would expect to find e-commerce tools and landing pages where customers can make a purchase online.So now you can easily understand that what you want to make.