I just wish Blogger had a simple way of creating static pages, that did not necessarily show up as a blog posted page.
Anyone that has been blogging for sometime will tell you, that there is certain information that a person or company would like to have readily available through a link on the blog itself to a separate page with the same branded template image as the main home page. Other times, it would really be cool if a person could have a unique page or pages that have a different template style. For example: maybe all the blogs posted under a particular label; a person would like to have a different image at the top of the page header to separate and visually identify the postings. There are Blogger workarounds and hacks that place in different pictures or images depending on certain parameters, but it would be nice to have maybe a different customizable template area for the static pages and/or labeled categories.
Additionally it would be cool if a person could easily blog to a different subdirectory area of the website when using Custom Domain Name Blogger publishing on another hosted account. While FTP publishing does allow multiple separate blogs under one domain name, custom domain name publishing does not provide the ability to create separate blogs under the main area of the website. Which means you can not have mondays.ws and mondays.ws/coolwidgets as a place to blog directly about coolwidgets. This would be a very handy feature to be able to easily add another subdirectory area under the current blog as a person would have with a unique category area and static pages on a regular website. You can however have other sub domain names with the same custom domain name using Blogger Custom Domain Name option. For example: backflag.com is the domain where I post short snippets using Tumblr as the free online publisher engine. But I use marketingstrategies.backflag.com as the custom domain name publishing option with Blogger to the sub domain marketingstrategies, for information about marketing strategies. Keep in mind that subdomains are typically viewed as separate websites and it is important to note from a search standpoint (see note below about having different websites).
Static Page Workaround for Blogger
Probably the simplest static page workaround for Blogger at this time is to go to the earliest blog posting date and post a new page with backdating it to this earliest time. Turn off comments and backlinks under post options for this posting if you want, and set the date to the oldest date. Then simply link to it.
The Strength of the Free Blogger Service
The strength of the free Blogger service is the ability to customize the html and css (cascading style sheets) code in order to create your own unique branded image. Other blog hosting services that offer free hosting such as WordPress, provide some of the features such as static pages but have severe limitations on what can be altered and customized with the css and the html.
The ability to use hundreds, if not thousands of free templates set up for the Blogger service is one of the features that I have come to love. Just about any webpage or website template can be converted to a Blogger template with having an understanding of the Blogger drive engine and placing the proper coding from Blogger into the template design area. This feature really makes it much easier to brand the blog to the current site design. Read about Blogging with Professional Web Services.
Additional Blogger Wishes
I love the new Blogger with XML. I wish we could use the XML features on the non Google hosting services. For example: currently one of the Blogger options is in the classic design template mode for ftp publishing to a paid hosted provider with full customization. We have our website at www.pwebs.net for Internet marketing services. We publish a blog using Blogger at: www.pwebs.net/internet-marketing.htm about the Internet marketing industry, in which we write about various aspects of Internet marketing. Currently we are using ftp publishing for the blog, and a customized classic template design. There are some pretty cool features that XML has, as compared to the standard ftp classic design template. If the XML new Blogger templates could be used for other than the free Blogspot account hosting or the Custom Domain option (see below), then it would make it much easier to customize and manage the information for publishing.
I know I said this before but it bares repeating. Blogger currently allows you to use the Custom Domain name option, but hosting still takes place on Blogger servers, and only allows one blog per main domain name without subdirectories as compared to ftp publishing (see above). A person can create Sub Domains for different blogs using the custom domain name option, but these are considered separate websites, and if information was substantially the same between these Sub Domains, the Search Engines would more than likely not look too favorably to having created additional subdomains. For example: www.jimwarholic.com could have a subdomain as info.jimwarholic.com with unique information at both areas and this would be OK. This is no different than Blogger hosted services with millions of subdomains at blogspot.com, such as eclectic-marketing.blogspot.com and professionalwebservices.blogspot.com.
One reason to choose Custom Domain Name Blogger publishing over FTP publishing is the speed at which a page publishes using the custom domain name option. Whereas on an ftp account, hosted somewhere else, it can involve quite a delay with ftp publishing timeouts on very large blogs. Custom Domain Name publishing is also easier to add widgets and other items for the novice blogger. Expert bloggers can also customize the templates quite extensively.
In this world, nothing is ever perfect as it is. Everything man-made can always be improved. Not everyone will have everything they want. What are some of your thoughts on the Blogger wish list? What features would you like to see added? One last thing that I forgot to mention is I would like the labels to be able to automatically show up when using classic template de
signs for ftp publishing, just like in the XML template designs provides the sidebar widget to display the labels. Currently for classic templates you have to create the list manually for the sidebar areas.
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